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dauphin 09-20-06 10:36 PM

Shimano...and the others...
Ok, so I have only become aware of components and their differences over just a few short months. If you had asked me to tell you the difference between Sora, Tiagra, 105...etc five months ago, I would have given you a blank stare. Through reading and research I have learned at least what those supposedly in the know consider to be quality components. I read about Campy Record and Shimano Dura Ace...and that I should probably win the lottery before even thinking about such pricy gruppos. The thing is, in all the bike shops I see primarily Shimano on the road bikes and occassionally Campagnolo. I have also been reading about a really expensive new group from SRAM. I don't think I have ever seen SRAM on a road bike in any shop I have been in. So, how does it work? These companies bribe the bike companies to use their components? Is it like McDonald's serving Coke and Taco Bell serving Pepsi? Are they bought? I see some companies using both Shimano and Campy. What's the deal? Enlighten me please.

dauphin 09-21-06 03:03 PM

no one has a clue?

NOS88 09-21-06 03:19 PM

My understanding is that the pricing is competitive. That is a builder will approach a component company and tell them what they want and how many bikes they believe they will build with those specikfications. Obviously, the larger builders will get better rates. The exceptions are when a builder is not willing to settle for anything but a particular component, e.g., Trek building a Lance Armstrong Signature bike without Dura Ace would not fly, or an all Italian top of the line bike without Campy. I think Shimano has simply done a better job of penetrating the US market.

Lately, I've seen some SRAM stuff at several of the LBS in my area. I think most of this stuff is sold as upgrade components... could be wrong about that, but suspect it's true.

stapfam 09-21-06 03:41 PM

I have heard of several bike manufacturing companies going bust over the years. (Sram was one of them- or they were taken over by someone else at some point) and several companies coming out with products that did not enhance their reputataion or please their customers.Personally- I have never had a problem with shimano products so have never been tempted to stray away from something I know and trust. Only time I ever have was when I was talked into buying a Sram chain. It was not as crisp as I thought it should have been when fitted to my all shimano set up and I think I still have it isn the bike shed with only a hundred or so miles fitted to it. I also have a couple of broken Dure-Ace chains there to remind me never to buy them again.

Whenever I have to get a new derrailer or a new chain or shifters- I do look at the Other manufacturers gear and am often surprised at how expensive they are. Then a year later that model is on close out as a newer model or version has come out. I also keep hearing how good this other equipment is but as I have found out- It may not suit my riding style or my current set up. Take Grip shifters. One of my mates bought a bike with this fitted and he was not too happy about them. Instead of changing to conventianal shifters- he went and bought the most expensive grip shifters. And he kept buying them although he kept having problems with them. Why? I do not know but he was just one of those people that wants to try something new all the time. I am different. If it works for me, then I keep on using it. If it does not work well enough then I go for an upgrade- but in 15 years of cycling- I have sussed out what works for me- what I like and more important- what I do not like.

Campy -sram and probaly some others about, Have their own followers. I suppose they are like me. They started with it- never had any problems so have stayed with it. To actually state that Campy or Sram are better than Shimano is just a personal preference. Perhaps someone will come out with a modiication that does work better than one of the others for a while, but R&D gets going or copies with a twist get made and they are all back to the same level. In the meantime- I'll stay with the gear I know and trust and be happy with it.

linux_author 09-21-06 03:57 PM

- a lot of the problems boil down to patent issues and intellectual property issues... (you'd also be surprised to learn about cross-licensing issues in the electronics industry - it's a wonder any new dvd/mp3/tv gets released to market)...

- here's a link comparing campy vs. shimano:

- for my money at this point in time? 9spd 105 works just fine, although the 2007 tiagra line looks kinda nice:

- i have 9spd across the board for my rides because i like interchangeable parts (chains, brifters, etc.)... plus, i stockpiled on 9spd stuff (105 brifters $100, ultegra dbl crankset $69, DA derailleur $79) over the past two years, so i'm good for a couple years...

sch 09-21-06 05:11 PM

My experience may be atypical but I am a bit bummed on Shimano 8-9spd 105/Ultegra brifters. I have gone through 2 sets of 8 spd and 4 sets of 9spd brifters in the course of riding cerca 33,000 miles since
1997. Of these six sets 2 are currently operational. The R hand shifter gets used for 80-90% of the shifting done and in my experience is the only one that breaks. Somewhere between 2500 and 12500 miles the R brifter loses one or more positions: the ratchet either will not register on a given position or it will not up shift beyond a certain point. If you had watch maker skills you might successfully take one apart and put it back together, but it would be a futile effort as no repair parts are available. I have stocked up on some 9spd brifters, recently being sold for $140-160 and keeping my fingers crossed. I recently used a new set as a rebuild and discovered in Sept that the 4 mo old R brifter would not keep the chain on the 24T cog of a 12-27 cassette. It will stay on the 24 if I hold the shift lever pushed in but as soon as it is released it pops down into the 21T. That is the shortest any brifter has ever lasted, 500 miles or less. Priced at $140-200, for Ultegra or 105 9spd brifter replacements are not outrageous, just very annoying, if they last 10kmi. 10spd however are about twice that for Ultegra with no design changes that suggest longevity will be any better. $280 for a new set of 10spd is bordering on the outrageous. Campy brifters are a simpler, more robust design and spare parts are available, they are in theory fixable. Disassembly is fairly straight forward and reassembly no more difficult. I find the Shimano brifters more comfortable but when I built up a compact crank last fall I used Campy and it works very well.

As to SRAM on road bikes, they have been specced on quite a few comfort bikes but SRAM has only just introduced their drop bar mount road group and it will be in sparse distribution for awhile. Partly this relates to pricing: the two levels (premo and ultrapremo) are priced at high Ultegra and Durace prices ( $1300 and 1800+ IIRC) so this means the bikes are going to retail for $2500 for the cheaper group and up, to $5000 and up for the extra prima group. It will likely be European sourced bikes that will sport these groups for awhile, unless Cannondale and Trek get their arms twisted off.
In theory the groups have been available since July and the extra primo top end group has been raced by several pro teams for at least 18 months.

CrossChain 09-21-06 05:40 PM

I still mourn SunTour. It they had just had a better response to S.I.S. indexing.

ScrubJ 09-21-06 08:02 PM

I think I not long ago saw an Orbea ad mentioning SRAM components.

CrossChain 09-21-06 08:22 PM

Calling all OCP's..........SRAM?

RockyMtnMerlin 09-21-06 10:05 PM

Ever ride a bike with Zeus 2000 components. Almost every piece was drilled! Spanish knock off of Campy before Spain joined the EU. The gruppo I had when I lived in Spain was all black with gold (yes gold) hubs! I was thirty back then and thought they (and I) were the cat's meow. I see some Zeus components now turning up on Orbea bikes.

jazzy_cyclist 09-22-06 01:17 PM

Funny you mentioned this -- I just now finished reading an article on on the new SRAM gruppo and and how it works, what makes it different from Campy and Shimano, and why they guarantee that you'll ride 5 MPH faster (just kidding). It's a really excellent article.

Check it out here.

IIRC, the new gruppo has been spec'ed out on many new bikes.

Skipper 09-22-06 05:19 PM

My Trek 1500 came with an Ultegra rd and a SRAM cassette.

genec 09-22-06 06:54 PM

OK, I'll throw this into the mix... Galli.

I have a full Galli Groupo Sannino bike. Apparently the original Galli parts were all gold anodized. My parts are all pretty much Al looking... with the exception of the FD... which has some of the original gold on it.

I-Like-To-Bike 09-22-06 07:25 PM


Originally Posted by CrossChain
Calling all OCP's..........SRAM?

Google is Good; try it sometime.

Big Paulie 09-22-06 07:35 PM


Originally Posted by I-Like-To-Bike
Google is Good; try it sometime.

So is a decency; try it sometime.

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