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1st Generation Silver Shifters In Stock At Rivendell

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1st Generation Silver Shifters In Stock At Rivendell

Old 08-28-21, 02:24 AM
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1st Generation Silver Shifters In Stock At Rivendell

Just an FYI for those who care:

The 1st generation Silver downtube shift levers are in stock at Rivendell right now. These are the longer downtube-lever shaped ones, as opposed to the short-handled 2nd gen thumbie / barcon levers.

I'm not a compulsive Riv-checker, but it seems to me that these haven't been available for a long time. I've wanted a pair since I first saw them in the early Naughties... the Suntour Sprints they were copied from were the business. So, when I saw them in stock and I had the bread, I jumped on it. (Especially because the OEM LePree levers on my Fuji are pretty mediocre.)

--Shannon
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Old 08-28-21, 05:27 AM
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https://www.rivbike.com/collections/...449999jz-lsdkj

probably these
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Old 08-28-21, 07:21 AM
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Dia-Compe "Silver" W Shift Levers

Last year I modified a Campy Veloce 10 speed RD to use with an 8 speed chain and 12-30T Shimano 8 speed cassette. I used longer Shimano pulley cage screws with .5mm washers on both sides of the pulleys to better fit the wider 8 speed chain.



I needed to find some down tube shift levers with enough wrap to cover that combination. DuraAce 8 speed levers wouldn't do it so I bought several levers rated for 8-9-10 speeds.

The first was a set of microSHIFT 10 speed indexable levers.

They worked pretty well in both friction and indexing mode but the stubby levers were designed for bar ends and looked weird mounted on the down tube.



The next day a set of Dia-Compe "Silver" W Shift Levers arrived. Besides looking much better on the bike they friction shift fantastic. The design is a take off on the old Suntour Power Shifters but the steps in the ratchets are much closer thus smoother.




They seem to be the same levers marketed by Rivendell. My only question is how durable are the black plastic spacers under the lock screws going to be? (gray on the Rivendell levers). Also, the ratchet mechanism is not as robust as on the old Suntour Power Shifters.

verktyg

Why the modified Campy RD?

Because I liked the way it looks and I wanted everything to be matchy-matchy - black and blue!

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Old 08-28-21, 03:58 PM
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Originally Posted by verktyg View Post
They seem to be the same levers marketed by Rivendell. My only question is how durable are the black plastic spacers under the lock screws going to be? (gray on the Rivendell levers). Also, the ratchet mechanism is not as robust as on the old Suntour Power Shifters.
I think the current grey inserts are the ones that Dia-Compe came up with when the original ones started cracking. Nothing else was changed, and the inserts are available as small parts, so maybe just buy a set to keep and ride the black ones until they break. If memory serves, the OG ones were good for a few years before they got brittle.

They're an accurate reproduction of the 1985-86 Suntour Sprint shift levers. Pawl-and-ratchet action like the Suntour bar-con levers of blessed memory, but with many more teeth of much smaller size and a lever profile for downtube mounting. The only time I ever rode them was on a black-and-chrome Schwinn Circuit. (It was a club spare that I used in a junior crit when my bike broke.) The shift levers were one of my favorite things about one of my all-time favorite bikes.

And, yeah, the link in Germany_chris's post above is correct. I forgot to link the page.

--Shannon
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Old 08-28-21, 07:00 PM
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...Velo Orange is selling a similar ratcheting downtube shifter, in two different versions on their website. The more expensive ones have additional pull distance, so the will work with 11 in the back. They are also selling the plastic washers separately. I, too, wonder why they are made from plastic. You can also find them on e-bay under the name "ene ciclo" . The levers themselves look a little more like Campagnolo NR levers. I ordered a set for a bike I'm putting back together in a month or two. If they are as good as everyone says, I might order more of the $55/pair ones. Maybe. Assuming they don't disappear again.

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Old 08-28-21, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Germany_chris View Post
And here are the pods if you want to run them as barcons.

Note that in both cases, the price is for one, not per pair, so it's about $130 if you want the entire barcon package.
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Old 09-07-21, 08:07 PM
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Got the levers on Wednesday, installed them on Sunday at the co-op. Test rides seemed good.

Today was the first commute on the new shifty bits... They rock. Much faster than the straight-friction LaPrees, with way less lever travel per shift and overall. That's really nice on the front, since I'm running a road double front derailleur with 45/42/30 triple crankset. The LaPrees used their full swing to reach the big ring. The Silvers have travel to spare.

The shift to the granny is a double-double, 42x26 to 30x20. I make this shift once per ride to work, since the shop is at the top of the only hill on the ride. (8%, 1/2 mile) This morning, I had the best granny-shift since I put the triple on the bike. Almost a single motion. I need more practice on my double shifts, 'cuz it's so, so good when you nail one.

The shift feel is really, really nice. Almost as smooth as Simplex Retrofrictions, in fact. You can feel the little ratchet teeth, but it's almost subliminal, like a little "zzzzt" through your fingertips. It's nothing like the toothy feeling of a Shimano bar-end lever in friction mode. And the Silvers are so much quicker than the Simplexes. We'll see over time, but on balance I may like them better.

Yeah, 70 bucks plus shipping is a ludicrous amount of money to spend on downtube levers. But these are really, really good.

--Shannon
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Old 09-07-21, 08:52 PM
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I've had a set of the grand comps and the silvers and both were great when new but they are more delicate than suntour barcons. An old set of barcons is my preferred. Ymmv.
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Old 09-11-21, 01:26 PM
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The supplied bolts are a bit rusty now on mine. I put them on the Batavus Randonneur GL a couple of years ago. I'll try to shoot some photos tomorrow.
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Old 09-12-21, 03:46 PM
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Dia Compe makes these shifters for Rivendell.

They're also selling them under the Dia Compe brand as downtube shifters, bar ends, and stem shifters, available as ENE version as well.

Now available for 11 speed, rear shifter has a bigger body to pull more cable.
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Old 09-13-21, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Schlafen View Post
Dia Compe makes these shifters for Rivendell.

They're also selling them under the Dia Compe brand as downtube shifters, bar ends, and stem shifters, available as ENE version as well.

Now available for 11 speed, rear shifter has a bigger body to pull more cable.
I think the ENE ones only come in the 70s-looking "pebbled" style, and the smooth, 80s-looking ones are exclusive to Rivendell?

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Old 09-14-21, 01:07 AM
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Originally Posted by ShannonM View Post
I think the ENE ones only come in the 70s-looking "pebbled" style, and the smooth, 80s-looking ones are exclusive to Rivendell?

--Shannon
​​
i've had the smooth ones as bar end shifters.




Only 1 type of 10 speed ratcheting 'smooth' Silver shifters I know about and mine were purchased brand new as Dia Compe not Rivendell. They look identical to me.
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Old 09-14-21, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Schlafen View Post
i've had the smooth ones as bar end shifters.




Only 1 type of 10 speed ratcheting 'smooth' Silver shifters I know about and mine were purchased brand new as Dia Compe not Rivendell. They look identical to me.
Yep, doze be dem. Looks like I thought wrong.

How'd you like 'em as bar-ends? I always worried that they'd be too long. (Not that it matters... The pods aren't available for love nor money.)

--Shannon
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Old 09-14-21, 06:45 PM
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Originally Posted by verktyg View Post


Nice Litton! Ed has painted five or so frames for me over the years. If I were ever to get a custom frame (which I can in no way justify), he'd be on the extremely short list. Good guy, too.
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Old 09-14-21, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by bikingshearer View Post
Nice Litton! Ed has painted five or so frames for me over the years. If I were ever to get a custom frame (which I can in no way justify), he'd be on the extremely short list. Good guy, too.
​​​​​​The only necessary or sufficient justification for a fine custom bicycle from a great builder with whom one already has a long-standing relationship is "Because I want to and I can."

(Definitions of "I can" may vary.)

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Old 09-14-21, 07:28 PM
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Ed Litton

Originally Posted by bikingshearer View Post
Nice Litton! Ed has painted five or so frames for me over the years. If I were ever to get a custom frame (which I can in no way justify), he'd be on the extremely short list. Good guy, too.
I've been stopping by to see Ed since the 80's when he and Albert where together in Oakland. I built a couple of frames for myself at their shop in the early 90's and Ed painted them - Maximum Mojo - Eisentraut's jigs and torches!

Over the years Ed has painted several frames for me and I've bought a number of old frames from him that he had in those stacks of boxes "upstairs".

Two years ago to the day, I stopped in to see Ed. He'd just pulled this frame out of his upstairs stash and it was hanging on the wall. We'd been talking about him building a frame for me for years. It was my exact size so I bought it instead.



July last year, I ordered a new custom road frame from Ed, like this Della Santa track frame. Last week, he said I was number 3 in line!



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Old 09-14-21, 10:40 PM
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Originally Posted by ShannonM View Post
​​​​​​The only necessary or sufficient justification for a fine custom bicycle from a great builder with whom one already has a long-standing relationship is "Because I want to and I can."

(Definitions of "I can" may vary.)
--Shannon
Strictly speaking, "I can" order a custom from Ed, but it would be pushing the envelope a bit. My wife is incredibly supportive of my cycling habit and rarely if ever says anything about my spending. I don't want to abuse that, so I try to exercise some restraint. Emphasis on "try."
.
Originally Posted by verktyg View Post
July last year, I ordered a new custom road frame from Ed, like this Della Santa track frame. Last week, he said I was number 3 in line!

verktyg
Please tell us you heard that from Ed and not from Roland . . . .
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Old 09-15-21, 12:02 AM
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Originally Posted by ShannonM View Post
Yep, doze be dem. Looks like I thought wrong.

How'd you like 'em as bar-ends? I always worried that they'd be too long. (Not that it matters... The pods aren't available for love nor money.)

--Shannon
Brifter biased so to me they are simply archaic, there's just no other way to put it, 2/10 wouldn't do it again.
Never used downtube or bar ends in the past so I tried it now just for kicks. Had them on for a couple months. Suitable for long distance riding where not alot of shifting is required, maybe for long stretches.

Painful if you ride in traffic or anywhere you have to shift often and precise, but this applies to all bar end, downtube, stem or any other weird contraption friction shifters in my book. Def more involved than brifters, not worth the effort for me. I would rather not put that much effort into shifting alone. Would pick brifters any day as they've been very reliable for me, But I prefer11 speed brifters, so there's that.

The Dia Compe bar ends work fine and the ratcheting is smooth but can't see how it helps in any way, wouldn't say it's a feature, they are friction only. I'd rather go for a indexed type next time, if ever, most likely never.

As far as pods availability, if I'm not mistaken, by looking closely at them, these pods look like Shimano, so if you can find similar looking Shimano pods you should be golden, probably cheaper as well. I would suggest trying to find 10 speed pods as the ones for lesser cogs may not have enough space for the levers, but I'm not a connoisseur in old tech so someone else may want to chip in.

I've sold mine in the meantime, they were paired to a 10 speed T6000 rear derailleur, no clutch, and 11-34 SLX cassette, so depending on your setup you may need the leverage as it's taken more than a gentle brush against the lever to shift the 34 cog, would say it could be even harder to shift a clutched derailleur, so lever length is adequate. You can position them so they flare out slightly if worried about hitting them with your knees when inline with the drops, but it never happened to me. My handlebars were Nitto B135AA so they are already flared.

The derailleur I used had a mtb pull so a bit of modifying was required. Bare that in mind for when choosing a derailleur. Allthough the new 11 speed lever for the rear derailleur has a significantly larger body for more pull, only by looking at it I woukd say it's not compatible with the 10 speed pods, there was a very small gap on the ones I used. Possibly downtube use only at the moment.
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Old 09-16-21, 05:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Schlafen View Post
Brifter biased so to me they are simply archaic, there's just no other way to put it, 2/10 wouldn't do it again.
Never used downtube or bar ends in the past so I tried it now just for kicks. Had them on for a couple months. Suitable for long distance riding where not alot of shifting is required, maybe for long stretches.

Painful if you ride in traffic or anywhere you have to shift often and precise, but this applies to all bar end, downtube, stem or any other weird contraption friction shifters in my book. Def more involved than brifters, not worth the effort for me.
Friction shifting is like driving a stick, you either get it or you donít. It connects you to the riding experience.

That said I have no use for bar ends, IMO a ridiculous place to put shifters, downtube only for me.
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Old 09-16-21, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by C9H13N View Post
Friction shifting is like driving a stick, you either get it or you donít. It connects you to the riding experience.

That said I have no use for bar ends, IMO a ridiculous place to put shifters, downtube only for me.
Been stick'ing it all my life and can confirm the manual gearbox is indexed, lol. I would compare it to brifters not friction.

Brifters are extremely convenient and reliable.

Bar end mounted friction is more convenient than downtube mounted.
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Old 09-16-21, 08:16 AM
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Originally Posted by ShannonM View Post
Yep, doze be dem. Looks like I thought wrong.

How'd you like 'em as bar-ends? I always worried that they'd be too long. (Not that it matters... The pods aren't available for love nor money.)

--Shannon
I have the 1st gen Silver shifters on one bike, the Dia-Compe ENE's on another, the MicroShift's on yet another bike, and the typical Shimano's on two more bikes - all installed bar end. Can confirm the Silver shifters are marginally too long for bar end installation, but I think the squared off end is more the issue than the length. The corners can inflict a special kind of pain when they catch your knee!
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