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All 8 speed groups worked well?

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All 8 speed groups worked well?

Old 02-27-24, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by 70sSanO
I set up my wife's road bike bike with Claris shifters, Tiagra FD and XT RD (12-34). Shifters are fine. No issues with trim. Even if the throw is a bit long, never a problem.

Not impressed with the Claris brakes. 90's 105 double pivot are better.

The bike came with Tektro mechanical discs, which seem to work fine - she hasn't had any issues. I know I'd hear of it because on a previous road bike, it had some no-name rim brakes (a specialized Dolce with a Tiagra group except brakes) which she actually vocalized dissatisfaction with. I replaced the pads without satisfaction and then put 105 brakes on and she said they worked much better. The brakes had the same Koolstop pads, so it was totally in the brakes. The flex in the brake arms was pretty obviously different and with her hand strength (small in her 60s), that made a big difference. The low-level mechanical discs seem to work comparably to the "better" hydraulic discs on her other bike, at least in her opinion. They both work easily and that's all she cares about.

The Claris R2000 medium cage RD works fine with a 11-36t cassette and 43-30 crank, so the range - at least on the low end - is just like her road bikes with road triples and XT RDs.

I've set up a couple of road bikes for her with road shifters and XT RDs, both 9 and 10 speed shifters with 8 or 9 speed XT RDs.

She's happy because the range of this new gravel bike is the same as her road bikes; she doesn't care if she loses a couple of high gears. Like many of us, the low gears are most important!
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Old 02-27-24, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by icemilkcoffee
The older 8 speed groupsets were fine, except the FD shifting to the big chain ring was not as refined as with later cranksets. You have to maintain pressure on the shift paddle until it finishes the shift. The 9 speed cranksets had better ramps and pins and you could mostly just click it and it will shift. The 10 speed cranksets have even better ramps and pins, and were the final evolution as far as FD shifting was concerned. The newest 8 speed groupsets most likely incorporated all the lessons learned.
I have 2 generations of 10 speed 105, and SRAM Apex 10 speed. None of them will shift the front up unless you hold the lever until the shift is completed.

Originally Posted by 70sSanO
A lot is preference. While not exactly the same, 8 speed automatic transmissions offer performance and better fuel economy. CVT transmissions are probably better, but I've never cared for them.

As far as I know there is no passenger/sports car comes with an 8 speed manual transmission. Can't imagine using one as a grocery getter.

As far as bikes, 12 speed, and 13 speed, excel with 1x setups. If you can get the top end and the range for the terrain, nothing is better. Running a 10/11-36 with a 46t ring probably covers most anything. Especially in comparison to the traditional 13-28 with a 52/42 crank.

Back to cars, no one would drive a split shift passenger car, hats off to Mitsubishi. But doubles, and in the older set, triples, abound. For me it is not nostalgia, it is a marginal benefit. My younger self would be all over a 1x12. My older self just adds a small ring and a larger cog.
50-34 a
There may not be cars with 8 speed manuals or split shifts, but there are plenty of trucks with lots of speeds and split shifts. They face the same problem as bicycles: narrow effective rev range of the motor over a wide range of speed. Back in the day, 4 speeds was a lot, now 6 speeds are common (if you can even find a manual transmission). If the 3 to 6 speed cars wouldn't make it up hills, people would shift as many gears as it took.

52-42 with 13-28 is ancient history. Your 1x setup is certainly not low enough for me: We 's have a lot of steep hills around here, and I am admittedly not the world's strongest (or youngest) cyclist. I went from a 15-34 with 12-27 to a 50-39-30 triple withm12-30 and am very happy I did so. I rarely use the 12 tooth cog, but I do on occasion; I use the the 30-30 more frequently. I would have a hard time duplicating that with a 1x.
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Old 02-27-24, 07:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Camilo
The Claris R2000 medium cage RD works fine with a 11-36t cassette and 43-30 crank, so the range - at least on the low end - is just like her road bikes with road triples and XT RDs.
I set hers up 7/8 years ago with th the old 2400. I understand the R2000 is an upgrade with more trickle down features.

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Old 03-01-24, 11:59 PM
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Maybe the year to year changes arenít much, but over 5-10 years shifting has gotten much better historically. On road bikes I went from a late 80s suntour 7 speed down tube shifting bike (that thing never ever shifted very well) to mid 2000s ultegra 10 speed. Absolutely a quantum leap forward in shifting performance. Now Iím getting to know di2 105, and thatís even better, although shimano made the decision for me on 105, that I would want wide range gearing and not tight steps. The low gear is soooo low.

For MTB, I really loved X-9 grip shifters. So responsive, so easy to quickly dump a ton of gears. Now with sram 1x12 axs, I donít miss the front shifts at all, or the cables.
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Old 03-03-24, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by Dave Mayer
The 8-speed groups did work great. I've owned or ridden the first gen of road bikes with STI shifters (Dura-Ace and 600), and first-gen Campy Ergopower, both 8-speed. The shifting was and still is flawless, as in accurate, quick, and precise. The naysayers will have not either used this gear, or have used it with 20-year old cables and housing, and a worn-out chain and cassette. Or shifters gummed up with 20 years of road grime and sweat, which could be flushed out in minutes with a spritz of the right product.

The dominant force in the bike industry is to constantly be developing and promoting the Next Big Thing, which will cause customer bike turnover. An easy variant of this drive for obsolescence within the innovation-poor bike industry is to add a cog to the cassette every 7 years or so, rendering all previous bikes obsolete and worthless. So now we're add 12 or 13 cogs, when this sorry little game was passed diminishing returns at 9 cogs.

If you want a highly functional road drivetrain for terrain that includes hills, look to 3 x 8 systems. Very wide gear range with smaller cog jumps, and less shifting needed. For 90% of the time you'll be in the middle ring. Climbing: in the granny gear. Descending or a tail wind: the big ring.
​​​​​​I agree about the 8 speed groups back then. I've never used Dura Ace indexed, only set to friction, but 8 speed 600 Ultegra, XTR and XT all worked great, in that they indexed reliably, accurately, quickly, easily, and were durable too. By the early 90s, Shimano (And probably the others, i just haven't used them) had indexing figured out.

The question of whether 8 speed worked well and whether you need/want more than 8 speeds are different questions. And they are being clumped together in this thread. You can have both. 8, esp high end 8, worked (and usually still works) great, but you can want 12, too.

Last edited by Frkl; 03-03-24 at 09:26 AM.
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Old 03-03-24, 03:26 PM
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My old (ancient?) '98 off-road hardtail is a 3 x 8. Doesn't get much use these days, but got used often for a good while, and always worked flawlessly. There were times when I wish the cassette had closer gear spacing. Guess I could have built one with closer ratios, never really needed the smallest cog. But never did, and managed to grind thru somehow. But thinking about it, the 3 x 9 on my road bike has performed flawlessly also. Good maintenance and keeping a drivetrain in adjustment should make any one work well, unless it's a bottom of the barrel groupset.

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Old 03-03-24, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by freeranger
My old (ancient?) '98 off-road hardtail is a 3 x 8. Doesn't get much use these days, but got used often for a good while, and always worked flawlessly. There were times when I wish the cassette had closer gear spacing. Guess I could have built one with closer ratios, never really needed the smallest cog. But never did, and managed to grind thru somehow.
I used to run 13-26 cassettes which had really nice spacing but for most trails around here I need a 32 big cog to get up them hills these days.
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Old 03-03-24, 09:50 PM
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Originally Posted by tomato coupe

I doubt anyone is shifting through their full gear range "many 100s or 1000s" of times in one day.
This is why pneumatic shifting failed except on downhill bikes which didn't need to shift as much. Shimano figured 400 shifts would be enough for one ride and they were very wrong, turns out that people who are really into riding tend to shift a lot.
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Old 03-03-24, 11:37 PM
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Heck, I remember when Ultra-7 freewheels were the new fancy thing that all of us wanted.

I've had very few problems using or rehabilitating 8-speed bikes, although gummed-up 8-speed brifters / Rapidfires are just as time-consuming in the ultrasonic to get really clean as 11s/10s/9s/7s/6s. Just cleaned a set late last week.

On Saturday, I rode a 3x7 drivetrain and Sunday rode a 1x9. I was happy with both, although the 3x7 has higher overall gearing (not used much) and a few steps lower when needed.
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Old 03-04-24, 06:10 AM
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I have never had any major problems with 5, 6, 8, 9, 11 or 12 speed drivetrains I have used over the years. But the 11 and 12 speed are the best Iíve experienced - super quick, precise shifting across a wide range. Currently using SRAM 1x12 mechanical on my MTB and SRAM 2x12 AXS on my road bike. Both flawless and the electronic shifting is sublime.

People on the internet have trouble with anything and everything and the retro-grouches think everything was better bitd.
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Old 03-04-24, 06:12 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat
The main advantage is you can shift the front twice
Thatís a major disadvantage in my book. But each to their own.
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Old 03-04-24, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Frkl
out of curiosity, was the "someone" referring to present day 8 speed groups or past 8 speed groups working great?

the distinction is important because 8 speed is now associated with cheap groups, but that wasn't the case in the 90s. 8 speed 600 Ultegra worked great, I would agree, but it was a high-end group.
so was the eight speed dura ace 7410
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