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Barcons, DT, brifters, ???

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View Poll Results: What shifting method?
Brifters 105 9 speed
12
21.43%
DT Dura-ace 9 speed
17
30.36%
Barcons Dura-ace 9 speed
24
42.86%
Hybrid of barcons for the rear, DT for the front.
3
5.36%
Voters: 56. You may not vote on this poll

Barcons, DT, brifters, ???

Old 04-15-21, 01:42 AM
  #1  
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Barcons, DT, brifters, ???

Rebuilding my Fuji and I have a nice set of 105 yellow label shifters, derailleurs, cranksets, & brakes. I know the frame is not vintage but the group set is. Trying to decide a couple of things. 1, Do I go with the matching 105 brifters, a nice set of Dura-ace 9 speed DT levers, or Dura-ace 9 speed barcons? 2, I have both the 2x and 3x cranksets, I have the 2x installed, not sure I need the 3x here.
I have the long cage RD and have a 12-36 cassette.
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Old 04-15-21, 02:02 AM
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These tyres scream for barcons.
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Old 04-15-21, 04:47 AM
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What are those handlebars? Nitto I´m guessing, which one?
Voted for DT shifters, of course.
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Old 04-15-21, 04:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Zas View Post
What are those handlebars? Nitto I´m guessing, which one?
Voted for DT shifters, of course.
Nope, Not Nitto. Old Schwinn bars I think, not sure but a real nice Rando bar.
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Old 04-15-21, 06:16 AM
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I vote for one brifter, one barcon, and the set of downtube shifters mounted but not hooked up just because.
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Old 04-15-21, 06:32 AM
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DT because of Aristotelian Telos. Those mounts were designed for shifters. I know they have their destinies twisted into serving as cable stops at times , but they want to be shifter mounts.
Do you really want to take the chance of relying on existetially frustrated braze-ons?!
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Old 04-15-21, 07:22 AM
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I've really come to like bar-ends.

My two multi-speed road bikes have 11 speed 105 STI levers and 10 speed DA downtube shifters on bar-end mounts, respectively, and in a lot of ways I prefer the bar-ends over the STI levers. I sometimes feel like the STI levers take too much force to use especially on longer rides. My STI levers are the more contemporary versions with all cables routed under the bar tape so I know they will feel different than your 9 speed 105, but you might want to consider the actual shifting motion of your hands anyways.

I've tried to love downtube shifters, but they're just sooo far away from me on 64cm frames. You may not have that issue, though.

(I'm also a little biased towards bar-ends in this scenario because I just don't find the early STI shifters attractive in any way...)
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Old 04-15-21, 07:29 AM
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HA! You know you're in the C&V forum when DT Dura Ace shifters are leading the vote for a bike like that. Those would be my absolute last choice for a no name gravel bike.
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Old 04-15-21, 08:14 AM
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Assuming you're keeping those tires and that rando bar (i.e., OG flared drop), and assuming you're going to be hitting some rough stuff, I vote for barcons. Might be parallax from the photo, but the caliper clearance looks a little tight.
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Old 04-15-21, 08:25 AM
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For me, since everything else seems like modern, I'd go with the STIs. I don't mind using DT shifters on bikes with 6 or 7 speeds, because it's part of the aesthetic, but 8 and up and I like brifters.
YMMV.
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Old 04-15-21, 08:42 AM
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My 2c: downtube shifters for riding smooth roads, otherwise barcons. As mentioned above, those tyres would imply barcons. The brifters might come in handy on windy days for propping open the screen door.
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Old 04-15-21, 09:05 AM
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Downtube, because that's all I've ever used, except for brief forays with bar end and brifters. I will say that with my current gravel bike, a Trek 414, the dt shifters are not ideal.
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Old 04-15-21, 09:08 AM
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For me, the best choice would be Brifters every time unless I was seeking to keep a bicycle as original as possible.
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Old 04-15-21, 09:25 AM
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If you “like” Brifters, toss a coin for Brifters vs Bar Ends for x2 in the front.

Bar Ends if going x3 in the front.

I’m just not a DT shifter guy.
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Old 04-15-21, 09:46 AM
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I actively and very much dislike Shimano's insistence on indexing their left-hand brifters, so that is a no-go as far as I am concerned. I have nothing against their right-hand brifters except a mild dislike for the aesthetic of a cable sticking out the side.

I am also too old, fat, tall and inflexible to want to deal with DT shifting any more, so those are out.

So if it were me, I would choose: (1) barcon for the left-hand (FD) shifter; and (2) either the barcon or brifter for the right-hand (RD) shifter. Probably the brifter as I do like the right-now hand-on-the-bar, but Shimano barcons are great.

Now if you were talking Campy, I'd go with the brifters and never look back. Campy doesn't index their FD shifting, and that is worlds more flaxible and better than the Shimano system. At least, that's what I think.

Keep in mind that my opinion is worth exactly what you are paying for it.
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Old 04-15-21, 10:45 AM
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I really like barcons, particularly a rough road / gravel or in a crosswind or with a somewhat twitchy frame. Otherwise, I appreciate the responsiveness and clean lines of downtube shifters, which are what I have used most of the time over the years.
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Old 04-15-21, 10:51 AM
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1. Barcons
2. Downtube
3. Brifters
4. Hybrid
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Old 04-15-21, 11:15 AM
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Originally Posted by stevel610 View Post
1. Barcons
2. Downtube
3. Brifters
4. Hybrid
Barcons I can sorta get, but why DT ahead of brifters?
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Old 04-15-21, 11:51 AM
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I didn’t see the poll when I posted...

the bar end rear/DT front doesn’t make much sense- Brifter rear/DT or bar end front makes sense with indexed front shifting on brifters.

The way I’m seeing it- going with whichever method is more comfortable to you in the rear, but going with the friction method you’re most comfortable with (especially with 3 chainrings) in the front.

Is there a reason one would wish to go with a combination of bar end/DT shifting?
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Old 04-15-21, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by shoota View Post
Barcons I can sorta get, but why DT ahead of brifters?
A couple of reasons. First the bike already has them and I like the aesthetic. Second is I am experienced with downtube and barcons so familiarity with the system. (Actually just got my first bike with brifters yesterday..... I know, welcome to the 90's. )

If pure performance were the goal brifters would clearly be the choice.
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Old 04-15-21, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by stevel610 View Post
A couple of reasons. First the bike already has them and I like the aesthetic. Second is I am experienced with downtube and barcons so familiarity with the system. (Actually just got my first bike with brifters yesterday..... I know, welcome to the 90's. )

If pure performance were the goal brifters would clearly be the choice.
I have a sneaking suspicion that is the case for most folks in this subforum. Nothing wrong with it but having ridden proper gravel with all three of these solutions I can 100% say that brifters, then Barcons, then dt shifters, are the best experience, in descending order. If the OP is just putting around town with occasional bike path rides then yeah any of them will be fine. But if it's going to be a proper gravel bike and ridden like one, then brifters all the way, it's not even close. Just depepnds on the usage, which we have no info for yet.
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Old 04-15-21, 01:21 PM
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Where’s the DT friction option in your poll?
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Old 04-15-21, 01:24 PM
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as always big personal choice and how what your are riding

I have gotten to wear I really like Brifters, super efficient and make my ride fun.

I still use and like DT but I ride differently with them, and of course is de riguer for heroica which I am planning on doing this year

I simply don't like barcons, first I am always hitting them with my knee at rest and then starting out trying to shift and second they have always seemed more awkward to shift than going to the DT
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Old 04-15-21, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by shoota View Post
I have a sneaking suspicion that is the case for most folks in this subforum. Nothing wrong with it but having ridden proper gravel with all three of these solutions I can 100% say that brifters, then Barcons, then dt shifters, are the best experience, in descending order. If the OP is just putting around town with occasional bike path rides then yeah any of them will be fine. But if it's going to be a proper gravel bike and ridden like one, then brifters all the way, it's not even close. Just depepnds on the usage, which we have no info for yet.
I'm with Shoota! If you are going to ride gravel with any level of aggression, brifters are the way to go. I will add that I agree with the earlier criticism of Shimano's left side (front derailleur) brifter but have found that the Dura Ace brifters in 8 and 9 speed are much better than the Ultegra, 105, etc. models. If you are trying to channel a vintage vibe then bar-end shifters.
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Old 04-15-21, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by stevel610 View Post
1. Barcons
2. Downtube
3. Brifters
4. Hybrid
Command Shifters for the win.

IMG_2402 by Dave The Golden Boy, on Flickr

Command Shifter + RRL Lever by Dave The Golden Boy, on Flickr
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