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Rehab noob seeking 1988 Cannondale advice

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Rehab noob seeking 1988 Cannondale advice

Old 08-26-20, 11:37 AM
  #1  
Beachdaze
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Rehab noob seeking 1988 Cannondale advice

Hello vintage cyclists,

Even though I'm mostly riding a sweet Felt carbon fiber comfort frame road bike that I bought last summer, I can't even think of getting rid of my battered 1988 Cannondale ST400-- It has been with me since it was new, and over many many miles in many places. My Canny has all vintage stock equipment (Suntour Accushift alpha 3000 etc) except for the flat bars and brake handles that I put on about 25 years ago because the drop downs were too long a reach for me. I'm trying to understand the following:

1. I really hate the down tube shifters. What are the best kind of bar-mount thumb shifters to put on a bike of this vintage? Would it be possible to get index shifting on the 6-speed Shimano freewheel?

2. What kind of shifter cable posts do I need to get for the downtube?

3. Would it ever be possible to switch the groupset to a Shimano mountain bike set that I have lying around?

4. Is there an affordable 1" carbon fiber threaded fork available that would work?

Ideas appreciated!

Site won't let me post photos :/

My dear old "extension of my body" 1988 ST400.

My new ride on the new Tappan Zee Bridge bike lane over Hudson River.
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Old 08-26-20, 12:15 PM
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If you could find some 6 speed Deore thumb shifters, those are nice. I assume you would need to swap in a Shimano rear mech to have it index properly.
What is the mtb set? How many speeds?
Personally, I donít think I would bother with a carbon fork.
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Old 08-26-20, 12:31 PM
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If you want to keep the Alpha stuff, buy a set of thumbie mounts from Rivendell. You can mount your current downtube shifters on them, and pick up a pair of downtube cable stops (about $15 on eBay or Amazon, or Riv may also sell them). Recabling will, of course, be required.

Re your MTB group, pictures and description would help. Your frame will accept up to a 130mm rear hub, but not a 135...some later Deore stuff was 135, I think.
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Old 08-26-20, 12:49 PM
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My 88 SM500 came with 6 speed uniglide and Exage Mtn group. The spacing is 128 so the early mtn groups will be fine.

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Old 08-26-20, 04:46 PM
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I have an 86 ST400. Since there is a through-hole in the downtube for the shifter bosses, you should be able to fabricate something pretty readily to mount a set of aftermarket shifter cable posts. I upgraded a different bike to Shimano 600 SIS bar ends. They're great. I got the shifters NOS, so the RD shifter had the crescent needed to get the right spacing for standard 6 speed (i.e. Shimano, or any pre-index 6-speed excepting ultra spaced). Make sure whatever indexed shifter you get is standard 6 speed, if you're planning on staying with a standard 6 speed cluster. If you're open to other options, the world is your hamster.
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Old 08-31-20, 07:59 AM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by due ruote View Post
If you could find some 6 speed Deore thumb shifters, those are nice. I assume you would need to swap in a Shimano rear mech to have it index properly.
What is the mtb set? How many speeds?
Personally, I donít think I would bother with a carbon fork.
Many thanks for the input. MTN bike set is 9 speed with Shimano Deore XT RD. It's from what I believe to be a 90s CAAD 2 mountain bike that I bought a couple of years ago for $200. However the frame/ fork setup are super stiff and a little big for me, so I'm hoping to use the parts for a different bike since the shifting is excellent.
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Old 08-31-20, 08:05 AM
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Originally Posted by old's'cool View Post
I have an 86 ST400. Since there is a through-hole in the downtube for the shifter bosses, you should be able to fabricate something pretty readily to mount a set of aftermarket shifter cable posts. I upgraded a different bike to Shimano 600 SIS bar ends. They're great. I got the shifters NOS, so the RD shifter had the crescent needed to get the right spacing for standard 6 speed (i.e. Shimano, or any pre-index 6-speed excepting ultra spaced). Make sure whatever indexed shifter you get is standard 6 speed, if you're planning on staying with a standard 6 speed cluster. If you're open to other options, the world is your hamster.
Thank you. I bought some vintage Suntour thumb shifters for flat handlebar with 6-speed index. I would rather go for something fancier, but I'm a noob and so the learning curve is a little steep.
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Old 08-31-20, 08:18 AM
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This site doesn't seem to let me post or reply to photos.
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Old 08-31-20, 08:21 AM
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1988 ST 400, needs flat handlebar thumb shifters and it would be nice to upgrade to 700c wheels. Other ideas?

Last edited by Beachdaze; 08-31-20 at 08:26 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 08-31-20, 08:30 AM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by rccardr View Post
If you want to keep the Alpha stuff, buy a set of thumbie mounts from Rivendell. You can mount your current downtube shifters on them, and pick up a pair of downtube cable stops (about $15 on eBay or Amazon, or Riv may also sell them). Recabling will, of course, be required.

Re your MTB group, pictures and description would help. Your frame will accept up to a 130mm rear hub, but not a 135...some later Deore stuff was 135, I think.
Cheers. Rivendel site looks great. Pretty sure my 9 speed mountain bike cassette is too wide for the 126 dropout on my Cannondale. It's from a CAAD 3 mountain bike with Deore ST components. Probably stick with the old 6-speed gear for now.

Last edited by Beachdaze; 08-31-20 at 08:32 AM. Reason: addendum
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