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Best ever rear derailleur

Old 11-06-12, 10:21 AM
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lanab
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Best ever rear derailleur

I can't find any reference of reviews of different manufacturers and models of RDs, i have one site but it lacks reviews of newer models like the DA7400 series.

What would you consider the best RD ever made, both older friction based and newer indexed?
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Old 11-06-12, 10:27 AM
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Gentlemen....start your engines!
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Old 11-06-12, 10:28 AM
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My votes:
Friction - ST Superbe pro and Campy SR with Bullseye pulleys. Second choice: C-Record
Modern - Campy Record Ergo. I hear the SRAM Red is a nice system, but have yet to experience it and have heard it is more finicky. I know many who swear by Dura Ace, and now that Shimano has finally done away with their fugly brifters perhaps they are an option

If I were to choose, I'd go with Record 10 speed.

I see a poll in this thread's future.
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Old 11-06-12, 10:30 AM
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For me, it'd be a Nuovo Record, but my preferences date back to about 1970... But there are many, many that will work just fine.
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Old 11-06-12, 10:42 AM
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Friction - Suntour GT/GT Luxe. I went with this over the Cyclone only becasue it has a barrel adjuster.

SIS - Shimano 1056/6500 (105/600) from the late 90's/early 2000's. All metal, shift flawlessly, wide gear ranges available, and fairly robust.
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Old 11-06-12, 10:42 AM
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Shimano Eagle.
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Old 11-06-12, 10:44 AM
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Bicycling magazine just had an interview with Mr. Rear Derailleur.
He chose the Ofmega Mistral because it was cool, and his 2nd choice was a 134g Soviet bloc design.

Me, I like a Shimano Ultegra 9-sp long cage. Does about everything I'll ever need done by an RD.
After that, Campy 8-sp Chorus. Tough, dependable, infallible and reliable.

Best ever? Superbe Pro friction. Does more to make the rider appear competent than any other RD.
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Old 11-06-12, 10:46 AM
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Suntour Cyclone GT MkII gets my vote....
Quick, precise shifting always, Light, beautifully made and not so hoity toity expensive...at least back in its heyday...
I'll find one for myself again one day.....
Second for me is the Mavic 851 SSC, Just the most interesting looking derailleur of that time and its looks sets it apart from everything else. Helps that its so light too, Performance is better than most other similar straight parallelograms of that time, the ingenious cage height adjustability makes that possible as you can get the jockey wheels closer to the FW cogs.

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Old 11-06-12, 10:52 AM
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Frank Berto had a special shoutout in his book to the Suntour VX...I'll look it up later for the exact quote. I think he wasn't referring to 'Best Ever,' but more like 'really good, really affordable, raised the bar for all derailleurs.'
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Old 11-06-12, 11:14 AM
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Suntour Cyclone gen.1 short cage is the best I've used. I'm also a big fan of Suntour Vx-GT, Cyclone GT 1st gen., Campagnolo NR. I haven't used anything other than friction derailleurs or internal gear hubs in recent memory or to any real extent.
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Old 11-06-12, 11:14 AM
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Originally Posted by dbakl View Post
For me, it'd be a Nuovo Record, but my preferences date back to about 1970... But there are many, many that will work just fine.
True but Nuovo Record didn't get that good reviews.

The parallelogram geometry is not optimised for gear changing - Campagnolo was never overly interested in the idea of ‘chain gap’. The Nuovo Record does not like low gears - and it also does not give a precise change with very small cogs at the high gear end. Many was the road race that was lost due to a missed shift into a 13 tooth top cog.
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Old 11-06-12, 11:18 AM
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Paul Rasta, mon.

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Old 11-06-12, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Chicago Al View Post
Frank Berto had a special shoutout in his book to the Suntour VX...I'll look it up later for the exact quote. I think he wasn't referring to 'Best Ever,' but more like 'really good, really affordable, raised the bar for all derailleurs.'
Yeah, if the vote was for best RD, dollar for dollar, the Vx seems like a clear winner.
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Old 11-06-12, 11:49 AM
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Originally Posted by fender1 View Post
Shimano Eagle.
Naw--- Huret Allvit all the way!!!! And a picture proves it!



Great chrome. Fantastic styling. Precise shifts. Impeccable handling!
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Old 11-06-12, 12:07 PM
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Originally Posted by lanab View Post
Many was the road race that was lost due to a missed shift into a 13 tooth top cog.[/FONT][/COLOR]
I never road raced nor missed a shift. I've been running 14/28s with NR since 1972, low enough for me then, but now I need a triple. Still my favorite and a constant. I'm sure there's something better, but I've never felt the need for it. I love my old crap!
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Old 11-06-12, 12:08 PM
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Looks good but i would probably choose SuperBee over Vx.
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Old 11-06-12, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by due ruote View Post
Yeah, if the vote was for best RD, dollar for dollar, the Vx seems like a clear winner.
But look at the NIB factory finish.



I rode the 6 speed version of these into the ground, still have it somewhere. My fave. The 7 speed is just fine too.

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Old 11-06-12, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by pastorbobnlnh View Post
Naw--- Huret Allvit all the way!!!! And a picture proves it!



Great chrome. Fantastic styling. Precise shifts. Impeccable handling!
Well, riding with no chain like that, I can see how you'd have a hard time mis-shifting.
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Old 11-06-12, 12:32 PM
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Shimano XT 8s.. 730/737. Mid 1990s, durable, shimano 8speed is burly with good action, it is the most durable and user friendly and low maintenance indexed system with the most widely available parts. The similar year XTR is probably better but I have had more experience with these and I suspect the XTR is no more durable than the XT.
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Old 11-06-12, 12:43 PM
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Based on performance alone, Suntour Vx.
- I'd give it the edge over the Cyclone/Superbe.
My Huret Challengers would be my 2nd runner-up, while my Campy NR would only win the prize for Miss Congeniality.
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Old 11-06-12, 12:49 PM
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Originally Posted by himespau View Post
Well, riding with no chain like that, I can see how you'd have a hard time mis-shifting.
Seriously....so much better with a chain

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Old 11-06-12, 12:50 PM
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Campagnolo Euclid Gets my Vote.. I have a couple, on my Touring Bikes,
I got them many years ago..
It was Campag's trying to get a share of the MTB market.

since then they dropped out, and concentrate on just Road bikes.
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Old 11-06-12, 01:02 PM
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Originally Posted by cobrabyte View Post
Suntour Cyclone gen.1 short cage is the best I've used. I'm also a big fan of Suntour Vx-GT, Cyclone GT 1st gen., Campagnolo NR. I haven't used anything other than friction derailleurs or internal gear hubs in recent memory or to any real extent.
Our list is almost identical... the Mk1 Cyclone in the short and long cage version is amazing in every respect from it's aesthetics, performance, and lack of weight... if you want something a few grams heavier that is striking looking and shifts just as well the Vx series is equally as nice and it has grown to be one of my absolute favourite derailleurs of all time. If I swapped a Cyclone Mk1 for a Vx I would not feel like I was downgrading anything and would give the edge to the Vx for being a little more robust with a less fragile cable clamp.

The Cyclone Mk2 is a little heavier than the Mk1, shifts just as well, but is not as pretty while the Mk3 series is merely alright but nothing like it's predecessors.

The NR is legendary for it's reliability and shifts well within it's operational limits... and they are beautiful to look at.

For grail items, the Simplex JUY 543 on my 1957 Peugeot shifts so well you would think it was indexed and is a helicoil design that competed with early Campagnolo parallelogram models and exceeded their performance and would say it shifts better than the NR as well.
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Old 11-06-12, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post

.......The Cyclone Mk2 is a little heavier than the Mk1, shifts just as well, but is not as pretty.....
I always thought the MkII was lighter as it looks like there's less material used on it compared to the MkI when you compare the two, side by side.
Velobase seems to confirm this as it lists the Mk1 at 178 grams, while the MkII weight is indicated as 162 grams.....It's just a little lighter......but it is lighter...
As for looks, like everything, its subjective. I personally just happen to like the cleaner, more modern lines on the MkII....

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Old 11-06-12, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by lanab View Post
I can't find any reference of reviews of different manufacturers and models of RDs, i have one site but it lacks reviews of newer models like the DA7400 series.

What would you consider the best RD ever made, both older friction based and newer indexed?
By the mid 80's Shimano had perfected the rear derailleur. The first generation of Shimano 600 indexed derailleurs were as good as it gets, and didn't suffer from the compatability problems of the early Dura-Ace units. I can't see any substantive improvement in derailleur-based shifting since then.

Now to expand the debate....

As far as the best shifting performance, everything I've ever used pales next to my Alfine 8-speed internal hub. I have used pretty much every variety of derailleur-based system going back to the early 70s, right up to current STI and Ergopower systems. But the Alfine shifts correctly every time. There is no hesitation, no mis-shifts, no noise, no in-between gears, no clattering or complaining. The shifting is utterly reliable, quiet and fast. Plus the hub has a silent clutch, and it is quiet while coasting, and it engages the chain the instant you apply power.
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