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Simplex Retrofriction shifters: how much cable do your pull?

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Simplex Retrofriction shifters: how much cable do your pull?

Old 03-09-11, 06:57 PM
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JunkYardBike
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Simplex Retrofriction shifters: how much cable do your pull?

I want to use a pair of braze-on Simplex Retrofriction shift levers on an 8 speed shimano cassette. I've got a set of clamp-on RTs on another bike, and with an ultra-spaced 6 speed freewheel and 1st generation Suntour Cyclone RD without a cable adjuster, the lever moves way past perpendicular to reach the large cog.

I plan to use the braze-ons with a modern Shimano RD with cable adjuster. Is this going to work without having to move the lever 180 degrees?

Yeah, I can and will test it out, but I'd like to plan for alternatives before I place an order for some other bike stuff.
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Old 03-09-11, 07:01 PM
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Yes.
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Old 03-09-11, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by kludgefudge View Post
Yes.
This doesn't answer my grammatically challenged question: how much cable do your (levers) pull? Unless you were answering the question about the possibility it will need to move 180 degrees. I assume they'll work, but how ridiculous will the maximum lever position be?
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Old 03-09-11, 07:47 PM
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MalcolmsFrejus
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I have them on my bike with an 8 cog cassette. They pull enough - yes. But hitting that big cog puts the lever parallel to the ground or just about.
I'd say it doesn't look ridiculous when you're riding it.
It was an "adjustment" to get used to pulling the lever that far back.
I can try and get a pic if you want to see where it ends up(?).
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Old 03-09-11, 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by MalcolmsFrejus View Post
I have them on my bike with an 8 cog cassette. They pull enough - yes. But hitting that big cog puts the lever parallel to the ground or just about.
I'd say it doesn't look ridiculous when you're riding it.
It was an "adjustment" to get used to pulling the lever that far back.
I can try and get a pic if you want to see where it ends up(?).
Thanks, no need for a pic, your description is enough. I'm not worried about it looking ridiculous, I'm worried about fumbling around to find the lever buried somewhere under the downtube. But I suppose I'd acclimate. Are you using an RD with cable adjustment? I know with my RF's I'm running on my other bike, I have to pull at least 5-10 degrees before I get enough tension to start moving the RD.
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Old 03-09-11, 08:39 PM
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You need to put more tension on your cable. A 4th hand tool works well for that. Pull it as tight as you can without moving the FD off of its stop.
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Old 03-09-11, 08:43 PM
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No need for a 4th hand tool. Shift up one cog, adjust barely hand tight, it will shift down and be tight.
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Old 03-09-11, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by JunkYardBike View Post
Thanks, no need for a pic, your description is enough. I'm not worried about it looking ridiculous, I'm worried about fumbling around to find the lever buried somewhere under the downtube. But I suppose I'd acclimate. Are you using an RD with cable adjustment? I know with my RF's I'm running on my other bike, I have to pull at least 5-10 degrees before I get enough tension to start moving the RD.
Yes, it has a cable adjuster (DA 7402).

Last edited by MalcolmsFrejus; 03-09-11 at 08:55 PM. Reason: Too "wordy".
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Old 03-09-11, 09:47 PM
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Originally Posted by MetinUz View Post
No need for a 4th hand tool. Shift up one cog, adjust barely hand tight, it will shift down and be tight.
Thanks, good tip.
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Old 03-10-11, 02:57 AM
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I put some heatshrink on the gearcable where it wraps around the Simplex lever to 'effectively' increase the lever diameter and so pull more cable. It cuts down how you have to pull the lever for a specific cable pull.
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Old 03-10-11, 06:26 AM
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That is a smart idea! Thanks for the tip!

Originally Posted by LWaB View Post
I put some heatshrink on the gearcable where it wraps around the Simplex lever to 'effectively' increase the lever diameter and so pull more cable. It cuts down how you have to pull the lever for a specific cable pull.
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Old 03-10-11, 08:46 AM
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For a while, I had Retrofrictions with an Ultegra 10s rear derailleur and 10s cassette. The combo worked nicely. However, it required nearly 180 degrees of throw for the full gear range. In practice, I found it a little annoying and decided to switch dedicated 10s DTs. Keep in mind that I regularly use my full gearing range. Not a lot of riders do that.

Originally Posted by LWaB View Post
I put some heatshrink on the gearcable where it wraps around the Simplex lever to 'effectively' increase the lever diameter and so pull more cable. It cuts down how you have to pull the lever for a specific cable pull.
This is exactly what I was planning to do to help the cable pull. I never got around to giving it a try, but I'm glad to hear that it works. If only the cams on Retrofrictions were larger, they would be the perfect friction shifter... They already are the best, after all.
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Old 03-10-11, 09:02 AM
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Thanks so much for this thread! I installed a Retrofriction last night in one of the Rivendell pods and the stop doesn't put the shifter lever perpendicular to the ground, which would be best. I like the shrink wrap idea, but I'm not sure this will work for me because of the bar end pod. I will likely end up building a wheel with a 126mm hub and 7sp freewheel. I will use all 7 cogs. I can see the shifter lever being in the way while climbing in the drops because with the largest cog engaged the shifter will likely be pointing up, perpendicular to the ground.



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