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Should I upgrade?

Old 05-18-20, 06:02 AM
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Sn00p444
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Should I upgrade?

I recently picked up a 93ish specialized Allez which has a shimano downtube mounted shifter and Rx100. Curious if I should update it to a handle mounted shifter integrated into the brake handles such as a shimano Claris. Everything seems to work but I need to replace the tires, cables, and cable outers.
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Old 05-18-20, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Sn00p444 View Post
I recently picked up a 93ish specialized Allez which has a shimano downtube mounted shifter and Rx100. Curious if I should update it to a handle mounted shifter integrated into the brake handles such as a shimano Claris. Everything seems to work but I need to replace the tires, cables, and cable outers.
only if u dont like the current shifters. Personally i use barend friction on everything.
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Old 05-18-20, 06:31 AM
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In your place, I wouldn't.

When you ask whether you "should" update the bike, I wonder if you're worried about something. As long as 1993 technology is working well (and it very likely is), there's nothing to worry about.

Brifters save a small amount of the rider's time. This is important if you're racing. Most people aren't racing and never will race; and if they did want to race, they could make much greater time savings by training than by changing the location of their gear levers.
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Old 05-18-20, 11:56 AM
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DT looks best IMO. Run what you've already got. Brifters offer very incremental benefit but cost $$ and mess up your bike's feng shui with more cables shooting out of the bars.
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Old 05-18-20, 01:52 PM
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Just to offer another opinion. I have bikes with both brifters (shifter/brake combined) and bar end shifters, and spent many years/ miles with downtube shifters. I like brifters much better than the alternatives; mostly because you don't need to move your hand to shift( bar ends depending on where your hand is) or take your hand off the bar to shift (dt shifters) . Not a big deal if you are just rolling along but if I'm pounding up a hill in traffic I would just as soon keep both hands on the bars

Yeah, I know people used downtube shifters for decades......but
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Old 05-18-20, 01:53 PM
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Shimano's RX100 is a solid groupset, provided it's not been abused (of course). If you know how to replace cables, cable housings, tires, etc and tune everything up again, keeping the original groupset is the simplest way to get the bike back in action and better than it's pre-maintenance state.

I really like the Claris groupset as it looks sharp, the STI/brifters are comfortable and work well, and it doesn't cost an arm and a leg yet gives you proven performance. The brake and shift cables are both under the bar tape, so the look is very clean. It is 8-speed, so a new rear wheel is needed to operate to full potential as 7-speed freehub bodies are shorter/less wide than 8-10/11-speed freehub bodies. You could put 7 of the 8 cassette cogs on your current wheels and do that to save time and hassle if you wanted. I'd lean towards a new wheel/wheelset with 8-10 (or 8-11) speed compatibility because it saves the hassle of fidgeting with things and not forgetting, plus you get all 8 speeds and the ability to go to more speeds at some point in the future if you ever want to. That's just me though, and there are plenty of decent new and used wheelsets (~$100) for sale that should do the trick.

STI/brifters offer a lot of convenience and can be more comfortable than older brake levers (with whatever bars were used with them), so you won't find me discouraging you from going ahead with them. I think or I assume you "should I" question is a matter of practicality as you'll have everything disconnected and thus it makes it a perfect time to put other parts on it before cabling it all up.
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Old 05-18-20, 02:15 PM
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I like brifters too -- they were common enough by '93 -- go for it.
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Old 05-18-20, 02:18 PM
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"Upgrade?? Upgrade??!!"



"Refund??!!"
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Old 05-18-20, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by 3Roch View Post
Just to offer another opinion. I have bikes with both brifters (shifter/brake combined) and bar end shifters, and spent many years/ miles with downtube shifters. I like brifters much better than the alternatives; mostly because you don't need to move your hand to shift( bar ends depending on where your hand is) or take your hand off the bar to shift (dt shifters) . Not a big deal if you are just rolling along but if I'm pounding up a hill in traffic I would just as soon keep both hands on the bars

Yeah, I know people used downtube shifters for decades......but
Exactly.
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Old 05-18-20, 05:59 PM
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I think the reason for riding vintage bikes has little to do with what's "best". My old Super Course will never be the bike that my Roubaix is, but I still love it for what it is. I recommend keeping it as original as possible.
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Old 05-19-20, 12:36 AM
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I like brifters; but I like downtube shifting just as well. I guess what I like about brifters is mostly the complex gadgetry component of the whole deal. "Can I get all this persnickety stuff to work the way it's supposed to?" Turns out I can,and yeah, it's fun to use, but the plain old downtube shifters work just as well for me, and they basically fall into place on their own.

And Shimano Claris is as fugly as it gets - at least on a classic old steel frame. There is no love in my heart for that grotesque stuff.
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