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Certain Areas That Won't Change

Old 10-23-20, 11:54 AM
  #1  
70sSanO
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Certain Areas That Won't Change

Admittedly, I ride older bikes. But I don't have an issue with newer designs and would not have an issue going to a modern carbon frame if I felt the need to upgrade.

But there are a few areas where my retrogrouch rears its head. One main area is gearing.

I have never been able to get beyond 7 and 8 speed systems; although I might consider a 9 speed one day. For years I've ridden a 12/14, 13/15, or 14/16 first and second position cogs. Adding another cog has always been to add range on the low end; 6 speed 24t went to 7 speed 28t. My mountain bikes went from 7 speed 13-34 to 8 speed 13-40.

About 5 years ago I picked up a road bike for my wife that had 10 speed 105 with a triple. The first thing I did, before she even took one pedal stroke, was to strip off the 10 speed components and install 8 speed 12-34 cassette with a mtb rear derailleur and Claris shifters. It takes her everywhere she needs to go.

I'm sure there are others that have one area or another where the line is drawn.

John
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Old 10-23-20, 12:13 PM
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Nope. No line whatsoever. It's all good man.
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Old 10-23-20, 12:40 PM
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Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
Admittedly, I ride older bikes. But I don't have an issue with newer designs and would not have an issue going to a modern carbon frame if I felt the need to upgrade.

But there are a few areas where my retrogrouch rears its head. One main area is gearing.

I have never been able to get beyond 7 and 8 speed systems; although I might consider a 9 speed one day. For years I've ridden a 12/14, 13/15, or 14/16 first and second position cogs. Adding another cog has always been to add range on the low end; 6 speed 24t went to 7 speed 28t. My mountain bikes went from 7 speed 13-34 to 8 speed 13-40.

About 5 years ago I picked up a road bike for my wife that had 10 speed 105 with a triple. The first thing I did, before she even took one pedal stroke, was to strip off the 10 speed components and install 8 speed 12-34 cassette with a mtb rear derailleur and Claris shifters. It takes her everywhere she needs to go.

I'm sure there are others that have one area or another where the line is drawn.

John
Hit me up if it's 5700 10 speed 105 and you still have it. The only line I draw is it's gotta be mechanical.
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Old 10-23-20, 12:53 PM
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I go with things that work. Or are supposed to before I get ahold of them.
As such, I'm hoarding a pair of compact triples. I plan to outclimb the Zombies.

Matching is secondary, BUT...
... sometimes, a man has to accessorize properly, or risk a faux pa.
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Old 10-23-20, 01:13 PM
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At one point, I felt like 5-6 speed friction was all I wanted and all I needed (and this was long after the introduction of indexed systems). Then, I acquired a bike with 7-speed indexed bar-ends. Oooh. I liked that a lot. Then I started experimenting with 8-speed Shimergo systems (10-speed Campy brifters and 8-speed Shimano drivetrains mate perfectly) and 9-speed Shimergo systems (ditto for 11 Campy/9 Shimano). Then, I sprung for a modern 10-speed Shimano 105 group for a particular group (though I have found it runs better in 9-speed mode). Now I have one 1x11 bike (SRAM drivetrain and shfiters) and one 2x11 bike (Campy Potenza drivetrain and shifters).

I have a single-speed for when I want to keep things simple.
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Old 10-23-20, 01:19 PM
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I stopped at 8 when I realized 9 speed chains were pricey. Neal's modernization trend has got me thinking, though.
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Old 10-23-20, 01:23 PM
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Originally Posted by tricky View Post
Hit me up if it's 5700 10 speed 105 and you still have it. The only line I draw is it's gotta be mechanical.
I agree. My favorite quote when Di2 first came out was from BikeSnobNYC, "Electronic shifting will completely change the way you think about bicycles--assuming, of course, that you previously thought of them as being relatively inexpensive and easily serviceable." I think he's since warmed up to it, but I definitely haven't. I don't care if it's better. It's just not right. (Especially on a Paramount!! I'm looking at you, @RiddleOfSteel )

Also, yes, 5703 was the peak of Shimano's triple products.
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Old 10-23-20, 01:26 PM
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If it gets you on a bike and puts a smile on your face, do it.

It's also totally fine to have both old and new. I don't have the same system on any of my bikes.
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Old 10-23-20, 01:29 PM
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Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
At one point, I felt like 5-6 speed friction was all I wanted and all I needed (and this was long after the introduction of indexed systems). Then, I acquired a bike with 7-speed indexed bar-ends. Oooh. I liked that a lot. Then I started experimenting with 8-speed Shimergo systems (10-speed Campy brifters and 8-speed Shimano drivetrains mate perfectly) and 9-speed Shimergo systems (ditto for 11 Campy/9 Shimano). Then, I sprung for a modern 10-speed Shimano 105 group for a particular group (though I have found it runs better in 9-speed mode). Now I have one 1x11 bike (SRAM drivetrain and shfiters) and one 2x11 bike (Campy Potenza drivetrain and shifters).
The fact that all the major manufacturers abandoned triples put an upper limit on my drivetrain modernization -- 10-speed for Shimano, 11-speed Athena for Campy, 8-speed Sachs New Success for SRAM. I see Gevenalle has a 12-speed shifter. I could do that. But, honestly, I was happy with 9-speed. I only moved to mostly 10-speed because the components were more readily available.
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Old 10-23-20, 01:36 PM
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I like 7 and 8 sp because of the no-problems and cheap chain. Would have no issues with a road 9 or 10 sp, I think. But I wouldn't go 11, 12 or 13. Don't know why, maybe just because I'm a retrogrouch, but somehow I don't trust them.
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Old 10-23-20, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Reynolds View Post
I like 7 and 8 sp because of the no-problems and cheap chain. Would have no issues with a road 9 or 10 sp, I think. But I wouldn't go 11, 12 or 13. Don't know why, maybe just because I'm a retrogrouch, but somehow I don't trust them.
We have the technology. We can build Steve Austin better. stronger. faster.

My fondness for 11-sp is about the range, not quite the function.

Today, at this hour, minute, and second, I like DA 9sp or DA/Campy 10sp DT shifters and whatever I feel like matching to them. The sheet works.

Like Neal, I have 1x11 SRAM and that is some slick stuff. Never tried Potenza, but pot and pizza always did go together.

Having just picked up some Super Record 11, I will rail about the price, (double that of NOS Centaur 11), but someone said it would be orgasmic.

I'll find out. I just wish they'd find a way to make this stuff shiny and silver.
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Old 10-23-20, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
I agree. My favorite quote when Di2 first came out was from BikeSnobNYC, "Electronic shifting will completely change the way you think about bicycles--assuming, of course, that you previously thought of them as being relatively inexpensive and easily serviceable." I think he's since warmed up to it, but I definitely haven't. I don't care if it's better. It's just not right. (Especially on a Paramount!! I'm looking at you, @RiddleOfSteel )


If not a Paramount, then an Expedition. Why? Precedent. Wire-in-frame + holes-drilled-in-frame (both from the factory) precedent. Sure, it was for a generator, but still, it counts! External Di2 is super easy to service, but a bit fussy to organize extra wire length (around the base of the seat tube) neatly. Internal battery and routing can be annoying, but you hide the rats nest of extra wire length, it looks clean, and really the only servicing you need to do is battery removal (wedged inside the seatpost per design) for charging. Small price to pay for dynamite shifting and the hottest looking STI levers ever made, IMO.

There was one generation of XTR Di2 that had its front derailleur 3x capable. XTR Di2 is heinously expensive, but hey, it's a triple, and you can run normal road STIs to do the shifting (talk about compatibility!). It's what I would do, and yes, I have thought about it!

*****

As for areas that won't change, I tend to not have any (and am given to heretical bicycle acts, as Andy has pointed out!). Carbon and disc are the two areas that I've had experience in before, and don't mind, but have some reservations on their ability to mesh with what I want my bike to feel like and how easy I'd like to operate/maintain it. Carbon dampens road buzz really well, but it doesn't have (due to its innate qualities) the springiness of steel, titanium, or good aluminum. I do still have much affinity for it, and would love to try a Cervelo R5 or Madone from ~5-10 years ago. And as for disc, it's the fork stiffness and feeling when braking that has put me off before. Well, that and pad contamination (I do like a quiet bike in all conditions). For the right bike, and with a test ride (new road disc forks are a lot better than they were 5 years ago), I'd be up for it again. I love my side pull calipers, though.

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Old 10-23-20, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by 70sSanO View Post
Admittedly, I ride older bikes. But I don't have an issue with newer designs and would not have an issue going to a modern carbon frame if I felt the need to upgrade.

But there are a few areas where my retrogrouch rears its head. One main area is gearing.

I have never been able to get beyond 7 and 8 speed systems; although I might consider a 9 speed one day. For years I've ridden a 12/14, 13/15, or 14/16 first and second position cogs. Adding another cog has always been to add range on the low end; 6 speed 24t went to 7 speed 28t. My mountain bikes went from 7 speed 13-34 to 8 speed 13-40.

About 5 years ago I picked up a road bike for my wife that had 10 speed 105 with a triple. The first thing I did, before she even took one pedal stroke, was to strip off the 10 speed components and install 8 speed 12-34 cassette with a mtb rear derailleur and Claris shifters. It takes her everywhere she needs to go.

I'm sure there are others that have one area or another where the line is drawn.

John
Its a moving target that seems to be moving even more the older I get.

And I get it, some things like pedals, clips and straps are non-negotiable, period, drop bars too although that is very likely to be forced on me sooner or later.

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Old 10-23-20, 02:32 PM
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Originally Posted by RiddleOfSteel View Post


If not a Paramount, then an Expedition. Why? Precedent. Wire-in-frame + holes-drilled-in-frame (both from the factory) precedent. Sure, it was for a generator, but still, it counts! External Di2 is super easy to service, but a bit fussy to organize extra wire length (around the base of the seat tube) neatly. Internal battery and routing can be annoying, but you hide the rats nest of extra wire length, it looks clean, and really the only servicing you need to do is battery removal (wedged inside the seatpost per design) for charging. Small price to pay for dynamite shifting and the hottest looking STI levers ever made, IMO.

There was one generation of XTR Di2 that had its front derailleur 3x capable. XTR Di2 is heinously expensive, but hey, it's a triple, and you can run normal road STIs to do the shifting (talk about compatibility!). It's what I would do, and yes, I have thought about it!

*****

As for areas that won't change, I tend to not have any (and am given to heretical bicycle acts, as Andy has pointed out!). Carbon and disc are the two areas that I've had experience in before, and don't mind, but have some reservations on their ability to mesh with what I want my bike to feel like and how easy I'd like to operate/maintain it. Carbon dampens road buzz really well, but it doesn't have (due to its innate qualities) the springiness of steel, titanium, or good aluminum. I do still have much affinity for it, and would love to try a Cervelo R5 or Madone from ~5-10 years ago. And as for disc, it's the fork stiffness and feeling when braking that has put me off before. Well, that and pad contamination (I do like a quiet bike in all conditions). For the right bike, and with a test ride (new road disc forks are a lot better than they were 5 years ago), I'd be up for it again. I love my side pull calipers, though.
You are particular about bike feel, but you are also an addict of sportiness. You are a fan of classic American V8s but I bet there is the bike equivalent of a C8 out there with carbon and discs that would do it for you or at least serve a purpose in your stable as an all out speed machine.
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Old 10-23-20, 03:15 PM
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I like most of the new gearing systems, mostly. They are finicky and less durable, but they're nice to ride. Truly 8 speeds are enough in most cases. I upgraded our tandem from 3x7 to 3x11. That was a surprise in that the shifting is better than with any derailleur of any type I've ever used.

One thing I'm not eager to try any time soon is tubeless tires with liquid sealant. I've seen a tire inflated, and I've read plenty about them. I understand the advantages, but I would have to get messy when I really don't want to. I know that the intervals between servicing might increase but when they come, damn, what a mess. Maybe the technology will improve, so I will keep an open mind. But I had enough experience with tubular tires to know how to handle them well, and while they are different from tubeless clinchers, there are some jobs I'm not eager to do.

I haven't owned a carbon fiber bike, but I'm not opposed to the idea. One of my bikes has a carbon fiber fork.
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Old 10-23-20, 03:30 PM
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Originally Posted by tricky View Post
You are particular about bike feel, but you are also an addict of sportiness. You are a fan of classic American V8s but I bet there is the bike equivalent of a C8 out there with carbon and discs that would do it for you or at least serve a purpose in your stable as an all out speed machine.
So basically, you're telling me to go ahead and have a custom 67cm carbon Land Shark touring bike (45cm stays plus all the braze-ons) or titanium touring bike of similar dimensions built? Have speediness and all-around capability? Sign me up! Or at least let me get a 66.5cm Expedition (or Sequoia) to build.
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Old 10-23-20, 03:46 PM
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Originally Posted by RiddleOfSteel View Post
So basically, you're telling me to go ahead and have a custom 67cm carbon Land Shark touring bike (45cm stays plus all the braze-ons) or titanium touring bike of similar dimensions built? Have speediness and all-around capability? Sign me up! Or at least let me get a 66.5cm Expedition (or Sequoia) to build.
I give you my full blessing.
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Old 10-23-20, 03:46 PM
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What is with the chain price hangup? You can get a nice nine speed chain for under $20.

I'm building my third nine speed bike. I like nine. Nine is fine.
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Old 10-23-20, 04:23 PM
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I have two hard limits; no electronic shifting and no carbon fiber. I once purchased a bike that had Chorus 11 on it and replaced the Chorus with Athena 11 since it was alloy.

Oh wait....three. I won't purchase a frame that doesn't have DT shifter mounts.
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Old 10-23-20, 04:29 PM
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Maybe I should never say never but I cannot see disc brakes ever being in my possession.
Having ridden 9 speed for many many years my spirit is going backwards to The good ole days of 7 and 6. That is where the fun is.
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Old 10-23-20, 04:54 PM
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I can add that 7-speed index shifting, whether bar-end, down tube, or Gevenalle, is awesome. Particularly if you have a frame you don’t want to respace to 130mm.
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Old 10-23-20, 04:58 PM
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Originally Posted by RiddleOfSteel View Post
So basically, you're telling me to go ahead and have a custom 67cm carbon Land Shark touring bike (45cm stays plus all the braze-ons) or titanium touring bike of similar dimensions built? Have speediness and all-around capability? Sign me up! Or at least let me get a 66.5cm Expedition (or Sequoia) to build.
Waltly - Makers of custom high-end titanium bicycle frames, forks and small parts
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Old 10-23-20, 06:19 PM
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The older I get the more I appreciate extra cogs between the same 11-13T small and 28-32T big cogs. Smaller increments between shifts, less tiring, easier to stay in the sweet spot. Even my 8 speed 12-32 cassette has one awkward jump in the middle of the cog range that feels a bit abrupt.

This summer the local REI was blowing out some parts, especially Shimano, so I paid something like $8 each for a couple of 9-speed chains (I don't have anything 9-speed atm, but things can change), and three BB-UN55's in various sizes for around $8 each. Not sure why they were deeply discounting bike parts during a pandemic induced shortage, but I was happy to buy 'em.

I have some 10-speed components for another build. The DA cassette is 11-25, which wouldn't be my first choice, but it came off a TT/tri-bike with cracked frame cannibalized for the components. I'll use it for one particular build just for chasing PRs and KOMs (yeah, that'll never happen) on good days when the legs are strong. But for most rides I'd prefer a 28T or larger cog for loafing up climbs.
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Old 10-23-20, 06:34 PM
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threadless stem converter

I would never use a threadless stem converter on a 1" threaded front end. Partially because I really don't like the look and partially because they're kind of the worst of both systems. I'm the type of guy to have 70mm or so of threadless spacers or a Technomic. A threadless convervter would either be unsafely flexy to achieve that or much heavier. I will admit to trying the Origin8 31.8 quil stem because modern bars are sooo much more comfortable to me.
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Old 10-23-20, 07:08 PM
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post
I stopped at 8 when I realized 9 speed chains were pricey. Neal's modernization trend has got me thinking, though.
I stopped at 8 after a bought a 9-speed STI group and really didn't notice the extra gear.
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