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It's decided: the Suntour Vx is the finest friction front derailleur.

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It's decided: the Suntour Vx is the finest friction front derailleur.

Old 08-30-21, 11:00 AM
  #1  
tendency
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It's decided: the Suntour Vx is the finest friction front derailleur.

Man, I had forgotten how perfect the Suntour Vx front derailleurs are: buttery smooth, light yet precise shifting. Completely bomb proof. Absolutely destroys the Dura Ace 74XX and 7700 models I've been using. Heavy clunky and I have to say surprisingly delicate build quality (talking about the Dura Ace). Not a fan. Wow. Suntour Superbe Pro is a close second but in my blind taste testing I prefer the Vx even over the Superbe Pro. Impressive stuff.

Just had to get that off my chest.
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Old 08-30-21, 11:23 AM
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Old 08-30-21, 11:47 AM
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For me, it's the 3-hole NR.

VeloBase.com - Component: Campagnolo Nuovo Record 0104007 (1982 - 1987, 3-hole standard band)
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Old 08-30-21, 12:05 PM
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Originally Posted by SurferRosa View Post
I'm talking performance - not looks I've run the 80s Nuovo Record FD and while it looks great in terms of pure performance I'd take the Vx over it. Just my .02 cents of course.
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Old 08-30-21, 12:09 PM
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Ditto for Vx-S rear. The best kept secret in your local co-op RD drawer.
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Old 08-30-21, 12:10 PM
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Originally Posted by tendency View Post
I'm talking performance.
If it didn't work great, I wouldn't use it.
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Old 08-31-21, 06:14 AM
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Is that reverse action like the Compe V?

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Old 08-31-21, 07:05 AM
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I needed to check, it is a “normal” actuation, does require a loop of housing.

might be a good candidate for a Simplex replacement.


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Old 08-31-21, 09:20 AM
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Originally Posted by jeirvine View Post
Ditto for Vx-S rear. The best kept secret in your local co-op RD drawer.
the rear is an awesome touring setup.
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Old 08-31-21, 10:48 AM
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I vote for Suntour XC Reverse Pull (for C&V MTB).
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Old 08-31-21, 11:05 AM
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Idk

Between the two NRs and a Suntour XC Sport, I can’t really say which performs better. The XC Sport is even working with a weird 3 pulley rear derailleur and all is smooth.

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Old 08-31-21, 05:53 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
...does require a loop of housing.
Not necessarily - if the cable can be run under the BB shell it often will come up lined up well enough to go right through the slot/hole in the housing stop. It might even work with a clamp-on guide, if tweaked.

Those loops - any loop with a U - are water-traps, best avoided.
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Old 08-31-21, 06:41 PM
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I ran a shop in the 80s and its amazing how many people had those on their bicycles. Many took off the campy rear derailleur and put one VX on. Especially if they had a long cage. The VXGT was the best.

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Old 08-31-21, 07:01 PM
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All this time I was under the impression that the NR front der was the best I have used. Hmmmmm. Never cared for reverse action front or rear derailleurs. Have 10's of thousands of miles on NR front der and it has always performed perfectly without trouble. I have also had the Cyclone MkII front der on a bike I used for about 10K miles and it performed well much like the NR. In general ft der rarely underperform for me.
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Old 08-31-21, 11:38 PM
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I haven't really had problems with front derailleurs, so I usually just use a Cyclone FD to match the Cyclone RD (the greatest of vintage rear derailleurs IMO)
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Old 08-31-21, 11:45 PM
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Let us all now praise the least bad FD
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Old 09-01-21, 12:05 AM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
I needed to check, it is a “normal” actuation, does require a loop of housing.

might be a good candidate for a Simplex replacement.


That may be the first time I have ever seen you post a photo. After all these years of dying to see your collection, I finally get a photo...of a Suntour FD?!
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Old 09-01-21, 12:20 AM
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Originally Posted by tendency View Post
Man, I had forgotten how perfect the Suntour Vx front derailleurs are: buttery smooth, light yet precise shifting. Completely bomb proof. Absolutely destroys the Dura Ace 74XX and 7700 models I've been using. Heavy clunky and I have to say surprisingly delicate build quality (talking about the Dura Ace). Not a fan. Wow. Suntour Superbe Pro is a close second but in my blind taste testing I prefer the Vx even over the Superbe Pro. Impressive stuff.

Just had to get that off my chest.
I agree the Suntour Vx is a fine front derailleur, but I'm going to respectfully disagree that it destroys the DA 7400 FD. I find the DA 7400 (no experience with the 7700 line) to be quick, precise, and reliable. In terms of weight, since you mention DA as heavy, the Suntour Vx FD is a respectable 114 grams, but still about 20% heavier than the DA7400 or Campagnolo NR FD at 94 and 95 grams respectively. The Mavic SSC front derailleurs, now those were delicate in my experience (tweaked cages and cracked clamps).
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Old 09-01-21, 01:14 AM
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Originally Posted by onyerleft View Post
What's the best FD for triples?
I really like Campy Racing T FD’s, and only ride triples. I tried a Suntour XC Pro that also shifted very nicely, but the Racing T’s were less likely to need trimming across on 8-speed cassette from the middle ring.

FWIW, I’m shifting with Ergo brifters on my own bikes, but just added a Tripilizer ring to a DA 7400 crank on my daughter’s ’85 Miyata 312 (needs an increasingly rare 28.6mm clamp) with Shimano bar-end shifters, so pretty straightforward, you'd think. Tried a bunch of FD’s thanks to the plentiful choices where I volunteer. Quite a variety of subtle but irritating problems! Clamp arm hits the rear fender. Deep inner cage plate interferes with the middle ring teeth. Thick outer plate contours cause crank arm contact when on the big ring. One of my spare Racing T’s was the answer, although it required very subtle and precise adjustments for FD body rotation and the high limit screw to preclude crank arm-cage contact.

I just found a nice XC Sport in the proper clamp size and might give it a try some day, just to know. It’s outer plate has thinner contours, so it might be better with narrow Q-factor cranks like that DA 7400, but that could also affect its middle-to-granny shifts. And I’ll watch for one of those Suntour Vx fronts, too.

My rings, 46-36-24, and my daughter’s new Tripilizer setup, 48-40-28, are atypical among the fast bike crowd. YMMV.

Last edited by Dfrost; 09-01-21 at 01:21 AM.
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Old 09-01-21, 06:06 AM
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How much different are front derailleurs? I get my push rod Simplex FD's to operate quite well. 40-50 year old FD cages get wonky. A couple bends and precise alignment and they start operating better than new.

Not a fan of reverse pull fronts. I gotta have the feel of pulling the lever down and a big thwonk as the chain engages the big chainring. Thats one of the best feelings in cycling right there.

Back in the day it was common to see Huret FD's on otherwise full Campy bikes because they worked just as well as the Campy NR and cost maybe $5.00.
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Old 09-01-21, 08:07 AM
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I like the NR front. Haven't dropped a chain in years and precise adjustment. Especially for FDs it is almost all in the setup and fine adjustment.
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Old 09-01-21, 08:35 AM
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Back in the day I liked the the Suntour "7" in both the front and rear. I still like the Seven front derailleur the rear not so much.
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Old 09-01-21, 08:45 AM
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I've been running a Suntour GPX this year. I was going to swap it since it's a bit chunky, but it works really well. Fast, positive shifts. Don't think it was designed for 8-speed setups, but I have plenty of clearance.

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Old 09-01-21, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by gaucho777 View Post
That may be the first time I have ever seen you post a photo. After all these years of dying to see your collection, I finally get a photo...of a Suntour FD?!
I have posted others, you have not been keeping watch.
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Old 09-01-21, 09:32 AM
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Originally Posted by oneclick View Post
Not necessarily - if the cable can be run under the BB shell it often will come up lined up well enough to go right through the slot/hole in the housing stop. It might even work with a clamp-on guide, if tweaked.

Those loops - any loop with a U - are water-traps, best avoided.
Cut off the element then, otherwise just extra friction in the system.
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