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A cautionary tale for old derailleurs

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A cautionary tale for old derailleurs

Old 05-23-19, 07:24 PM
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Even more useful than a dork disc is a derailleur guard. (We need a pejorative term for this, too. Any suggestions?) This thing really is useful, but we won't use them because they come on BSOs.

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Old 05-23-19, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by seedsbelize View Post
I use dork discs. And I use helmets.
...how do you attach the helment to the rear cluster to prevent the chain from dropping in against the spokes ?
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Old 05-23-19, 08:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Aubergine View Post
Hmph! I am offended. I love my DuoPars!! They are better than even the best Suntour friction derailleurs. So there, Nyah Nyah.

Seriously, the DuoPars work very very well, but I acknowledge they need attention. Which is why it really is on me that I did not notice the limit screws were loose enough to unscrew. And @SurferRosa, the derailleur is on a 1973 Motobécane Jubile with Huret dropouts, so it fits perfectly with the age and character of the bike.

I have another DuoPar on my Old Peugeot #1, an AO8 from 1974 or thereabouts. It has been a standout. So I am confident that these work well when cared for.
...I have a couple of those Duopars in the box with the dork discs.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
(We need a pejorative term for this, too. Any suggestions?)

...bike dropper's doohickey.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:04 PM
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Originally Posted by tiger1964 View Post

(OTOH, it's been a while since I've even been in the lowest sprocket, so I wouldn't be risking much)

...there's your answer. Live someplace flat.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:17 PM
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Applies just the same to new derailers too, if we are lump everything into one basket. Some of the low-end modern crap will loosen up quickly without any help, while other "old derailers" will hold their position for 30 years.

*cough* Suntour *cough*

There are so many good C&V derailers (to bad) in regular circulation that I tend to suspect the mechanic in these situations, if their first inclination is to blame the part on a blind assessment of age.

-Kurt
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Old 05-23-19, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Even more useful than a dork disc is a derailleur guard. (We need a pejorative term for this, too. Any suggestions?) This thing really is useful, but we won't use them because they come on BSOs.

Put one on the other side and you can call them Nerf Bars for performing Pitt maneuvers on other bikes.

As far as damaged spokes, I had a similar issue with my Campagnolo NR with Rally cage apparently causing damage to 4 drive side spikes before Eroica 2019. Luckily was caught when I brought the wheel into my LBS for bearing service and a freewheel swap - besides the damaged spokes, I had at least 6 other spokes loose. Thankfully they were replaced, retightened, and trued. I rechecked and adjusted the limit screws prior to the ride.

Shutter to think what might have happened on the Santa Rita or Cypress climb at maximal effort.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by katsup View Post
...

In my opinion, compared to a helmet and lycra, a spoke protector is low on the dork scale.
I've never thought of it that way, but you're right.

I don't have dork disks on all my bikes, but I also don't take them off the ones that came with them. I rarely ride without a helmet, though, because my dorky head has hit the ground several times with significant force.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:49 PM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Applies just the same to new derailers too, if we are lump everything into one basket. Some of the low-end modern crap will loosen up quickly without any help, while other "old derailers" will hold their position for 30 years.

*cough* Suntour *cough*

There are so many good C&V derailers (to bad) in regular circulation that I tend to suspect the mechanic in these situations, if their first inclination is to blame the part on a blind assessment of age.

-Kurt
Kurt, I blame the mechanic (me) too. I adjusted the derailleur when I put it on the bike, so I take responsibility. I just hoped to save other C&V spokes from the
same fate.
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Old 05-23-19, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by 3alarmer View Post
...I have a couple of those Duopars in the box with the dork discs.
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Old 05-23-19, 10:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Aubergine View Post
Kurt, I blame the mechanic (me) too. I adjusted the derailleur when I put it on the bike, so I take responsibility. I just hoped to save other C&V spokes from the
same fate.
You came out of it OK, that's all that matters!

In your defense, the Duopar can be quite the handful to install. Lots of bits moving about, occasionally a retaining nut on the back depending on the model, and it's easy to get distracted from the limit screws just by trying to get the thing on.

-Kurt
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Old 05-24-19, 05:45 AM
  #37  
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I had a wheel that had lasted over 30 years finally break a spoke because the derailleur hit the spokes. I am pretty sure in that case it was the hangar bending, that happens sometimes. I'm trying to remember what happened to the other wheel that died fairly soon after that, the hub failed on that one. There were some derailleur-related shenanigans, but I don't remember exactly what they were.
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Old 05-24-19, 06:50 AM
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Can't believe no link to the burnt-off, plastic dork disk thread in Road Cycling, has been posted yet. Not going to take the time to search for it, but that one takes the cake for strange wrenching behavior.

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Old 05-24-19, 06:50 AM
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Originally Posted by BFisher View Post
Ha ha! Steely good Suntour Honor, Nervar cranks, and a dork disk. Yeah, baby!

@Aubergine, sorry to hear about your limit screw up. I nearly did the same thing once. Only caught it as I checked the shifting in the stand before I set out. Hope you get things squared away quickly.
Apropos of nothing: I really wish that steel/alu pie plates were still used instead of cheap plastic discs. Can we start a letter/e-mail campaign to the CPSC?
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Old 05-24-19, 07:11 AM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Applies just the same to new derailers too, if we are lump everything into one basket. Some of the low-end modern crap will loosen up quickly without any help, while other "old derailers" will hold their position for 30 years.

*cough* Suntour *cough*

There are so many good C&V derailers (to bad) in regular circulation that I tend to suspect the mechanic in these situations, if their first inclination is to blame the part on a blind assessment of age.

-Kurt
Suntour VGT, the reliability king of Disraeli Gears. Reliable as ever was made.
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Old 05-24-19, 07:49 AM
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Originally Posted by ApolloSoyuz1975 View Post
Apropos of nothing: I really wish that steel/alu pie plates were still used instead of cheap plastic discs. Can we start a letter/e-mail campaign to the CPSC?
Old plastic disks are worthless, that's true. It's pretty common for them to shatter when used, if the bike rack at work is any indication. But metal disks were always the mark of a cheap bike.
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Old 05-24-19, 08:18 AM
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It's common for the hanger to bend inwards, and there are often no symptoms initially. Your derailleur appears to work normally, but you have to shift farther than before. But you don't notice that. You don't remember the bike being banged in a self-closing door or laying the bike on its drive side or something else bumping against it. And it might get banged and bent several times before the derailleur goes into the spokes. You might even readjust the limit screws so it works properly, not noticing the bend in the hanger. I've worked as a shop mechanic, and I've seen this many times. Often the bike owner will swear with 100% certainty that the hanger or derailleur was never bent, but I've seen it enough to know what's really going on. This is why a derailleur guard is even usefuller than a dork disk, because it prevents the bending, and the bending is why the dork disk is necessary.

I don't use a derailleur guard or a dork disk, for purely aesthetic, vain reasons. If I ever take a long tour, I would seriously consider both or at least the derailleur guard.

I've been lucky. I have had bent derailleurs that I didn't know about, and as I was shifting it into the spokes, I felt it quickly enough and shifted back out before any damage happened. That's a combination of luck and good sensitivity to what my bike is doing.
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Old 05-24-19, 08:44 AM
  #43  
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The only time I worried about shifting into the spokes was with a normal-low Cyclo bandspring rear derailleur, but that was on a bike with a hybrid transmission (wide-range Sturmey Archer 3-speed IGH with 4-speed cog block) that had no provision for a spoke protector. (On those, if your shift lever comes loose or your cable snaps, the derailleur cage heads right for the spokes.) On my few bikes that have come with spoke protectors, standard procedure is to remove the spoke protector and replace the 5-speed freewheel with a 6-speed (ultra, if necessary), or a 6-speed with a 7-speed. I do shift into the largest cog only at low speeds and only directly from the second-largest cog, so I have never had a low gear overshift issue or dropped a chain into the spokes.
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Old 05-24-19, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Kent T View Post
I love Suntour friction era derailleurs a lot, never met a VGT, AR, or ARx I didn't like. Never had issues with them. Shifted impeccably every time. Run one on the Rolling Stone (my 1982 Bridgestone Spica, aka the $20 wonder).
I bought an '70s Bianchi for my wife that was full ARx....I remember getting it all ready to upgrade it and well....never did. They were very, very reliable. My wife rode that heck out of that bike and I never had to replace a thing other than cables, tires, and tubes. It wasn't high-zoot but it worked well and was reasonably "light".
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Old 05-24-19, 09:45 AM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
Even more useful than a dork disc is a derailleur guard. (We need a pejorative term for this, too. Any suggestions?) This thing really is useful, but we won't use them because they come on BSOs.

Unlike old metal dork discs, these are just plain old aesthetically ugly. I won't do it to my bikes. I love them all too much to harness them with a "clutz clanger".
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Old 05-24-19, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by mech986 View Post
Put one on the other side and you can call them Nerf Bars for performing Pitt maneuvers on other bikes.

As far as damaged spokes, I had a similar issue with my Campagnolo NR with Rally cage apparently causing damage to 4 drive side spikes before Eroica 2019. Luckily was caught when I brought the wheel into my LBS for bearing service and a freewheel swap - besides the damaged spokes, I had at least 6 other spokes loose. Thankfully they were replaced, retightened, and trued. I rechecked and adjusted the limit screws prior to the ride.

Shutter to think what might have happened on the Santa Rita or Cypress climb at maximal effort.
That is what I refer to as a potential Widow Maker. Glad you got it sorted before Eroica. Pitt maneuver comment also quite the delight in wit.

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Old 05-24-19, 10:01 AM
  #47  
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Duopars are awful, unreliable, fragile, quirky, require the unobtanium tabbed washer, display a stunning probability of catastrophic failures, require an unobtanium propriety upper pulley, can’t safely roll backwards, have 2 parallelograms- either one, the other or BOTH can go out of alignment because of the cheap manufacturing, even the titanium looks cheap. And Suntour self destructed trying to chase the Duopar- despite that ANY **** ty cheap, low end Suntour derailleur being better than the Duopar.

“Oh the Duopar will take a 38T cog.” Really. When have you ever used a 38T cog? When have you even WANTED to use a 38T on an old bike? A Suntour XC will do a 38T cog- with none of the potential drama. I’ve personally used Shimano M735 and MT-60 and Suntour XC Pro and XC Comp on 34T cogs. All those were world class units- SIGNIFICANTLY less expensive, significantly more durable, index compatible- and they didn’t look like a cheap stamped derailleur. Plus, even a cheap ATB derailleur would work as well. I’d like to test out a V-GT Luxe and see if that’ll do a 38.

I get that it was a miracle of modern innovation, I get that it was an obscenely expensive component that only the fancy people knew about, and I get that there are serious cyclists that have put more miles on one Duopar than I’ve ever even ridden- period...

There’s just no reason to taunt fate with all the potential catastrophic failures that the Duopar presents.

And the the same thing goes for the clowns who search out and install 1st generation Mountech rear derailleurs.
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Old 05-24-19, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by The Golden Boy View Post
Duopars are awful, unreliable, fragile, quirky, require the unobtanium tabbed washer, display a stunning probability of catastrophic failures, require an unobtanium propriety upper pulley, can’t safely roll backwards, have 2 parallelograms- either one, the other or BOTH can go out of alignment because of the cheap manufacturing, even the titanium looks cheap. And Suntour self destructed trying to chase the Duopar- despite that ANY **** ty cheap, low end Suntour derailleur being better than the Duopar.

“Oh the Duopar will take a 38T cog.” Really. When have you ever used a 38T cog? When have you even WANTED to use a 38T on an old bike? A Suntour XC will do a 38T cog- with none of the potential drama. I’ve personally used Shimano M735 and MT-60 and Suntour XC Pro and XC Comp on 34T cogs. All those were world class units- SIGNIFICANTLY less expensive, significantly more durable, index compatible- and they didn’t look like a cheap stamped derailleur. Plus, even a cheap ATB derailleur would work as well. I’d like to test out a V-GT Luxe and see if that’ll do a 38.

I get that it was a miracle of modern innovation, I get that it was an obscenely expensive component that only the fancy people knew about, and I get that there are serious cyclists that have put more miles on one Duopar than I’ve ever even ridden- period...

There’s just no reason to taunt fate with all the potential catastrophic failures that the Duopar presents.

And the the same thing goes for the clowns who search out and install 1st generation Mountech rear derailleurs.
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Old 05-24-19, 10:09 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by Weresquatch View Post
Unlike old metal dork discs, these are just plain old aesthetically ugly. I won't do it to my bikes. I love them all too much to harness them with a "clutz clanger".
Yes, they're immensely ugly. I've never used one, because (1) they're immensely ugly, (2) my bike has no provisioning bolt holes for them, and (3) I associate them with BSOs. But look what we're doing. We are balancing aesthetics against practicality. If we were sensible, we would use them. And if everyone used them, we would not consider them ugly, especially if they had been on bikes ever since derailleurs came out.

And thanks for the pejorative term. That's a good one.
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Old 05-24-19, 10:10 AM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by The Golden Boy View Post
Duopars are awful, unreliable, fragile, quirky, require the unobtanium tabbed washer, display a stunning probability of catastrophic failures, require an unobtanium propriety upper pulley, can’t safely roll backwards, have 2 parallelograms- either one, the other or BOTH can go out of alignment because of the cheap manufacturing, even the titanium looks cheap. And Suntour self destructed trying to chase the Duopar- despite that ANY **** ty cheap, low end Suntour derailleur being better than the Duopar.

“Oh the Duopar will take a 38T cog.” Really. When have you ever used a 38T cog? When have you even WANTED to use a 38T on an old bike? A Suntour XC will do a 38T cog- with none of the potential drama. I’ve personally used Shimano M735 and MT-60 and Suntour XC Pro and XC Comp on 34T cogs. All those were world class units- SIGNIFICANTLY less expensive, significantly more durable, index compatible- and they didn’t look like a cheap stamped derailleur. Plus, even a cheap ATB derailleur would work as well. I’d like to test out a V-GT Luxe and see if that’ll do a 38.

I get that it was a miracle of modern innovation, I get that it was an obscenely expensive component that only the fancy people knew about, and I get that there are serious cyclists that have put more miles on one Duopar than I’ve ever even ridden- period...

There’s just no reason to taunt fate with all the potential catastrophic failures that the Duopar presents.

And the the same thing goes for the clowns who search out and install 1st generation Mountech rear derailleurs.
I rode across the country on my 1983 Trek 720 and a duopar derailleur. It handled all the shifts really well. It does need to be eased into the shift a little more than is the case with the other derailleurs I've used. It could well be somewhat more prone to being mangled. That said it was a good derailleur that can handle a lot of chain. I'd take a suntour over a duopar but it's not quite as bad as all that.
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