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quick tech question - RD switch out

jdd

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Any input here?

To improve shifting, besides a new chain I'd like to swap the rear derailleur on my road bike for a new one. (and do that instead of trying to replace little bits on the present RD, probably a hit and miss process)

Present RD is an ultegra, 10-speed (ancient, 15+yrs old). Cassette is 11(12?) - 28, and I'd prefer not to change this out--it's titanium, so tho it's old I'll guess it's not worn, and not likely the reason for poor shifting, tho I'm open to advice on that.

Front is a triple and still shifts well enough, not looking to change anything there.

Amazon has a 105 that's 10-sp and seems to have the right capacity, price is fine, too:

I'd like to leave the shift levers as they are, that is, use the present ultegra levers with a new RD that will work with them. That's the big question--will the present shifters work with a 105 (or tiagra) RD? Also, I don't think it's an issue, but will a 105 RD like that one (or something tiagra) work with a triple?

If swapping out the cassette comes into play, it'd be nice to have lower gears--maybe 34 or 36 as a low instead of the present 28. In which case, then a medium? or long? cage RD instead of the above.

What do you think? Any ideas/suggestions?

*
And before you say try adjusting this screw or that, my LBS has played with it a couple times, and I trust them.
 

kiwisimon

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If the cassette is old, it's likely worn, Ti wears much faster than steel.
An old RD is unlikely the problem. What is the shifting problem?
If you are changing the chain you should swap in a new cassette, otherwise the worn cassette will wear the chain.
You will need these anyway if you do get a new RD so it's not a waste.
Road Shimano 10S works with any 10S. Ultegra or 105 but are you sure the RD you have is a short cage with a triple up the front?
Unlikely as the triple means extra chain wrap is taken up by a medium or long cage.
 

jdd

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If the cassette is old, it's likely worn, Ti wears much faster than steel.
Okay, that's news to me. I'll call the shop a little later.

So maybe a chain and new cassette would do it... If so, much less worry if I don't need a RD.
 

jdd

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Scroll down a bit for 3x10 speed. Yes you need a med cage GS derailleur for triple.
yep, does look like that -- tho as above, fingers crossed that it's the cassette. The shifting 'problems' were mid cassette (middle gears), which from my (uninformed) view, a worn cassette makes some sense. More used, more shifted across.
 

jdd

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When shifting to a lower gear, shift, hear the click, nothing happens. Try again and push a little more on the lever to get it to go--maybe it'll work, or then I'll get two gears instead of one. Or there'll be some noise like the shift isn't complete. Workaround is to shift to a lower gear than I'd want, and then 'release' back to a higher one.

Shifting to higher gears, from larger to smaller sprockets on the cassette, works better, but not always (at least is not so annoying). Sometimes it will shift fine, but sometimes it won't, then when trying again it'd jump two gears instead of one.

Def a center-of-cassette phenomenon. Maybe I should have suspected the cassette initially. I never would've thought Ti wore faster.
 

OreoCookie

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With a drive train this old, when you ask “what component is worn?”, the answer is often “all of the above.” My last mountain bike had a nearly 10-year-old drive train. The RD was worn, the cassette was worn, at least two of the three chain rings were worn, the chain was worn and the rear trigger was getting a little soft.

The thing is, wear can be “your friend”. E. g. if you have worn chain rings and a worn cassette, putting on a new chain can make things worse. If your chain rings are worn, you could have trouble shifting in the front now, too. That's because the old, worn chain was stretched and fit better into the worn chain ring and cassette.

You can see wear on the chain rings relatively easily. Wear on the cassette is much harder to gauge (at least in my experience).
I never would've thought Ti wore faster.
Aren't only the top gears titanium, though? In any case, my money is that the cassette is also worn.

If your drive train is this old, I think it'd make sense to simply look for a used or new 105 11-speed drive train instead.
 

jdd

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Well, the bike's old, and I'd prefer not to go all out on it. I've always gotten a new chain every year or two, tho this one has been on longer (fewer km/less riding as I'm older). I can't remember when, but I've replaced the middle and big chainrings, but it's the shifting in back that's the issue. ((And as you know, I was recently interested in a 'new' road bike--maybe I should've sprung for that?!? ;) ))

Agreed that it could be anything/everything getting old. Eg, I'd like to use the same levers, but the hoods are showing a lot of age and finding new ones would probably be hopeless.

Going for new 105 and 11-sp would probably mean losing the triple in front, and tho modern stuff does have more range, I need the low gears.
 
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OreoCookie

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Well, the bike's old, and I'd prefer not to go all out on it.
Sure, I understand that perfectly. The thing is when you need to change e. g. chain rings, cassette, chain and rear derailleur, price-wise you might get into territory that is similar to a used 11-speed groupset. That was what happened on my mountain bike. (It also needed new wheels and new rotors and pads …)

However, my strategy was to replace my mountain bike with another one. After almost 10 years that was totally fair, it more than did its job. Since I didn’t have money for a new one, I got a used one (on this forum, thanks to @andywood). I put some money in (the brakes needed upgrading and I needed a new saddle and new handlebars). Maybe that’s ultimately the better option for you. But in case you want to replace a few parts to eek more life out of your bike, I just wanted to throw the option of getting a new 105 or used 105 drivetrain out there.
((And as you know, I was recently interested in a 'new' road bike--maybe I should've sprung for that?!? ))
That’s something else to consider: bikes have a limited life span, and 15+ years is well past replacement IMHO. Road bikes last longer than mountain bikes (no suspension and road kilometers are easier on equipment than offroad kilometers), but still, after 10 years, I would have started saving money for a new bike.
 

microcord

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. . . use the present ultegra levers with a new RD that will work with them . . . will a 105 RD like that one (or something tiagra) work with a triple?
Why ever not? However, the latest model (still 10-speed) of Tiagra RD won't work with a brifter designed for any other 10-speed RD. (The latest but one, will. Though I don't keep up to date with these matters; if Shimano has brought out another Tiagra in the last couple of years, my numbers will be off.) If you google "tiagra compatibility" or similar, I suppose you'll find it.

bikes have a limited life span, and 15+ years is well past replacement IMHO
Quadruple that. No, multiply it by six.
 

kiwisimon

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That’s something else to consider: bikes have a limited life span, and 15+ years is well past replacement IMHO
shaking my head at that no-no-no.gif
Road frames hardly ever wear out, so then it's most consumables: tires, tubes, brake pads cables,grips, hoods, and components as they wear out.
@jdd what is the model number on that RD? you'll find it on the frame side of the parallelogram.
 

jdd

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@kiwisimon I took it to the LBS yesterday, so can't look for the number on the RD. This is the bike, and it's not specified there, either, tho very likely 6600 (and GS, as @Cactaur's link pointed out).

(It's had dura-ace wheels on it for a long time. Those original wheels were horrible, rims developed a couple cracks around the nipples (the hubs sucked, too), got free warranty replacements w/in the initial two years, which are still doing fine on a different bike.)
 

kiwisimon

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LBS should be able to fix it with new cassette and maybe chain. might not be a bad idea to get cables (shift and brake) changed if it hasn't been done in the last few years.
 

microcord

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@kiwisimon. . . . This is the bike, . . .
It's described as "carbon", so @OreoCookie may have a point after all. (More so if this was the "Hardest Crash" bike.)

Japan does of course have a splendid array of artisans building frames and forks that aren't mere "consumables". On a not-so-long ride the day before yesterday, I spotted two Cherubim ("Cherubims"?), one Nakagawa, and one Sansom. (Yet I failed to notice one extraordinarily large frog, which my fellow-riders remarked on.) Frames with a dignity befitting a mature gentleman, and not prohibitively expensive. (In other words, we're enablers, happily spending your money for you.)
 

jdd

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No, crashed off a different one (steel). I don't think this one has even ever tipped over.
 

jdd

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LBS should be able to fix it with new cassette and maybe chain. might not be a bad idea to get cables (shift and brake) changed if it hasn't been done in the last few years.
I'm proactive with the shifter cables. Had one fray once inside the brifter such that they almost couldn't get it out and talked about sending it to shimano. They showed me an exploded view of a brifter--an unbelievable number of tiny parts. An engineering marvel that's accepted as normal.
 

OreoCookie

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shaking my head at that
no-no-no.gif

Road frames hardly ever wear out, so then it's most consumables: tires, tubes, brake pads cables,grips, hoods, and components as they wear out.
Yes, and if you replace everything but a frame, you will likely spend more money than replacing it with a completely new bike. It isn’t impossible, but if you spend similar money for equipping your frame with new components as getting a new bike, why not go for the new bike and sell the old one? Plus, I would only consider stripping the bike to the frame and building it up from scratch if I would do it myself. If you ask a LBS to do it, that’d probably be another added expense.

Also, there are also things like standards to consider, which makes acquiring new parts either harder or more expensive. E. g. groupset manufacturers are phasing out rim brakes, and I would expect that e. g. Shimano’s last (quality) groupset with rim brakes will be DuraAce. That comes with a cost.

Just to be clear: money might not be the only motivating factor. Perhaps you love tinkering and building up a bike from a bare frame. Perhaps you love this particular frame or this era of bikes. Or you feel super attached to the bike and you want to keep it around for longer.
Japan does of course have a splendid array of artisans building frames and forks that aren't mere "consumables".
I’d quibble with the word consumable: any item you have has a finite life span. Keeping an old bike around makes sense in some circumstances, just like some people like to maintain and drive older cars they keep in great condition, some people like to ride older or vintage bikes. That’s totally cool. But you don’t keep a 30-year-old BMW on the road because it is a sound financial investment, it is because you like old BMWs.

Keeping a bike for 8–10 years seems good enough to me. It has done its job, and the bike still has some resale value. Or I could repurpose it. (In Germany old bikes often serve as commuters.)

Artisan frames fall in the latter category to me. You get them, not because they are the best value, but because you appreciate the craftsmanship and the quality. And perhaps you get a frame with a custom geometry bespoke to you.
 

microcord

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@OreoCookie , I'm always puzzled by how common it is for people to make points about bikes by analogy with cars. I can't claim to know much about cars -- I drive them occasionally (and without incident) but have never owned one -- and maybe that's why I see little similarity between a 30-year-old bike and a 30-year-old (four-wheeled) BMW. The former is likely to have parts that are interchangeable with those of a great many other bikes of the same age. If you need new shock absorbers for your 1990 BMW, I wouldn't assume that you can simply install slightly worn examples described in some flea-market as having been salvaged from a 1990 Datsun. The de facto standards for bikes have changed quite a bit (and proliferated) since 1990 and in some ways bikes have improved. But if you get the rear of your 30-year-old steel road frame "cold set" from 126 mm (if that's what it is) to 130 mm, you've got a frame that's pretty similar to a non-negligible minority of today's new frames, and one that will take a wide range of wheels, cranksets, seatposts and stems that are easily obtained new or old. And as for "downstream" (?) compatibility, my oldie has new "Grand Bois" rims laced to its half-century-old Zeus hubs, new Koolstop pads for its decades-old Mafac brakes, etc.
 
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