Author Topic: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?  (Read 5194 times)

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Offline tbessie

Long tale of mechanical adventure here to get to my very simple question, so please bear with me. :-)

So I have two touring bikes.  I bought a Bruce Gordon for my 50th birthday present to myself, and have used that to tour around the US.

I also wanted to tour in other countries; specifically the UK, for now (I live in the US).  I wanted to get a bike that had S&S couplers on it, so I could save a bit of money on baggage fees (and also make it easier to get the bike from place to place).

My dream bike would have been a Co-Motion Americano, but I couldn't afford that.  So last year I bought a Surly Long Haul trucker, brought it to Rex Cycles in Sacramento, and had him put couplers on it.  Then I had it repainted and put back together.

This is the bike I took with me to bike from Cornwall to Edinburgh last year.

This year I'm going back to do a tour of Scotland.

One thing I wanted to do was to upgrade it a bit, since it has some cheaper parts on it (along with some more expensive ones).  It looked like this:

  • Off-brand cranks (triple)
  • Off-brand cassette and chain (10 speed)
  • Shimano Deore XT rear derailleur (10 speed)
  • Shimano Sora front derailleur
  • Microshift bar-end shifters

What I wanted to do was move to a dual-mode rear shifter (flip between friction and indexed), as last year the bike got out of tune for shifting within a few days of riding it.  Luckily, I passed through a town with a really excellent bike shop with a great mechanic (I think it was The Bike Shed, Barnstaple, Devon), and the guy spent an hour tweaking everything (he said many things were out of whack) and only wanted to charge me like 5 pounds for it (I gave him more anyway ;-) ).

I'd like to avoid that kind of situation in the much more remote regions I'm going to this year, thus the dual-mode shifters.

I had already gotten a 10-speed Shimano Deore XT chain and cassette as part of the upgrade.  It turns out that they didn't make the dual-mode shifters for 10-speeds anymore.  Luckily, I found some new old stock online and ordered it (they're officially Dura-Ace shifters, they haven't made them in about 7 years or so).  I did this because I wanted to stick with 10-speed, as it is newer, and also the 9-speed's largest cog is slightly smaller than the 10-speed's.

The shop put them on, and then found that the rear derailleur didn't work well with those shifters.

Around this time, the guy who was working on my bike (who had done a lot of touring) quit, so I was left with my bike in a half-completed state.  Luckily, the place I originally got the bike are very experienced, so I brought it to them.  The owner has also done a lot of touring, and he realized that these shifters needed a different rear derailleur; there was another XT that would work, but the cable routing was wrong for the Long Haul Trucker, so we had to go down a level to a regular Deore.  He also found that the front derailleur (Sora) didn't work very well with the new shifters, so he experimented a bit and found that a Ultegra front derailleur worked very well.

So now I had:


All fine, everything works well.  However, my question is - did I do myself a disservice doing all this, since I had to "downgrade" somewhat from XT to plain Deore rear derailleur?  Has anyone found it made a big difference in their shifting, to go between those two?

- Tim
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 01:04:51 pm by tbessie »
Touring: Bruce Gordon Rock 'n Road Tour (2014)
Touring: Custom Steve Potts Ti with S&S Couplers (2018)
Century/Weekend: Custom Titanium Firefly with Campagnolo Chorus (2017)
Every Day: Bianchi Brava frame, Campagnolo Mirage (1999)
Every Day Backup: Jamis Quest parts on a Surly Pacer frame (2012)

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #1 on: May 15, 2017, 09:38:45 am »
First, I'm not sure why your mechanic felt he needed to "downgrade" you to a straight Deore.  10 speed MTB Shimano derailer should be 10 speed MTB Shimano derailer.

That aside, you'll miss the bling when you look at the rder, but not much else.  I've got a bike with, I think, 26,000 miles on the Deore, and it still shifts well.  What more of a recommendation can I give?

Offline dkoloko

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #2 on: May 15, 2017, 10:39:24 am »
I  have used XTR, XT, (maybe LX) and Deore rear derailleurs. Did I notice "a big difference" between them? no.

Offline DaveB

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #3 on: May 15, 2017, 11:53:18 am »
I expect your "downgraded" Deore rear derailleur is a previous generation 9-speed one if it indexes properly.   Shimano 10-speed MTB rear derailleurs don't work with 10-speed road shifters but 9-speed ones do.  Your original equipment changes (10-speed MTB rd and 10-speed road shifters) were automatically incompatible.

Just about any front derailleur will work with barend or downtube shifters since they are all friction. 

And, yes, Deore level components are fine.

Offline tbessie

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #4 on: May 15, 2017, 12:57:50 pm »
I expect your "downgraded" Deore rear derailleur is a previous generation 9-speed one if it indexes properly.   Shimano 10-speed MTB rear derailleurs don't work with 10-speed road shifters but 9-speed ones do.  Your original equipment changes (10-speed MTB rd and 10-speed road shifters) were automatically incompatible.

Just about any front derailleur will work with barend or downtube shifters since they are all friction. 

And, yes, Deore level components are fine.

I think you may be right about the rear derailleur... the itemized bill says "Derailleur, Rear Deore M591 SGS Long Cage Blk" - so yes, you are right (just looked it up :-) ).

The problem with the front derailleur was that when it was adjusted so that it shifted easily onto the big cog, it also would often flip the chain over the cog so that it fell off.  If it were adjusted even a tiny amount so that it wouldn't do that, you had to really force the shift levers at the end of their range in order to make it shift.  The mechanic said he suspected that the Sora front derailleur I had on there had a bit of flex to it, causing the issue I saw.  When he upgraded to Ultegra (not Dura-Ace, I was mistaken there), it fixed it.  He said that the flex may have been caused by the fact that the Sora front derailleur was positioned further away on the seat tube from the chain than the Ultegra derailleur is.  In any case, the change made it work better.

Thanks for your reply!

- Tim
Touring: Bruce Gordon Rock 'n Road Tour (2014)
Touring: Custom Steve Potts Ti with S&S Couplers (2018)
Century/Weekend: Custom Titanium Firefly with Campagnolo Chorus (2017)
Every Day: Bianchi Brava frame, Campagnolo Mirage (1999)
Every Day Backup: Jamis Quest parts on a Surly Pacer frame (2012)

Offline tbessie

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #5 on: May 15, 2017, 01:04:06 pm »
First, I'm not sure why your mechanic felt he needed to "downgrade" you to a straight Deore.  10 speed MTB Shimano derailer should be 10 speed MTB Shimano derailer.

That aside, you'll miss the bling when you look at the rder, but not much else.  I've got a bike with, I think, 26,000 miles on the Deore, and it still shifts well.  What more of a recommendation can I give?

It was due to the change in shifters - the Microshift bar-end shifters work with Shimano MTB 10 speed rear derailleurs, but Shimano bar-end road shifters don't.  I mistakenly put that he changed it to a 10-speed Deore - it was a 9-speed Deore, as DaveB surmised. :-)  (I've since modified my original post, above, with the correct info).

Good that the plain Deore isn't problematic. :-)

- Tim
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 01:05:47 pm by tbessie »
Touring: Bruce Gordon Rock 'n Road Tour (2014)
Touring: Custom Steve Potts Ti with S&S Couplers (2018)
Century/Weekend: Custom Titanium Firefly with Campagnolo Chorus (2017)
Every Day: Bianchi Brava frame, Campagnolo Mirage (1999)
Every Day Backup: Jamis Quest parts on a Surly Pacer frame (2012)

Offline RussSeaton

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2017, 07:59:30 pm »
I have the plain basic painted black Shimano Deore 9 speed rear derailleur.  Think its 9 speed.  It works great with my Shimano 105 STI 10 speed shifters.  All Shimano derailleurs work excellent.  No functionality difference amongst all of them.  Just appearance and weight differences.

Offline opus

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2017, 09:21:13 am »
I hope you finally got all sorted out.

A couple things I'm not sure you were aware of:

- Your Microshift bar ends were already dual mode SIS/Friction

http://www.microshift.com.tw/BS-M10.html

- You could gotten a Long Haul Trucker Deluxe (either the frameset or a used bike) for I'm assuming less than adding couplers to an existing bike.

https://www.modernbike.com/surly-long-haul-trucker-deluxe-26-frame-set-deep-water-blue


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Offline tbessie

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2017, 12:24:28 pm »
I hope you finally got all sorted out.

Yes, thanks!

Quote
A couple things I'm not sure you were aware of:

- Your Microshift bar ends were already dual mode SIS/Friction

Really? I attempted to switch to Friction mode on the rear derailleur using the Allen bolt on the shifter, but it didn't seem to do anything helpful.  Perhaps I was doing it wrong.  I'll look at the manual for it.  The Shimano shifter is, at least, much more obvious in how to switch it over (there's a wire loop you just turn).

... I just looked at the manual - I guess all I had to do was loosen the cap with the Allen bolt, and rotate the cap (there's even a handy little flange to help the rotation).  D'oh!  All that work to install the new shifters.  Oh well, I guess I can say "Hey, it's all Shimano now!" or something. ;-)  Now I feel rather silly for spending all the money to "upgrade" it.

I'm surprised none of the mechanics I spoke with told me this; either they really wanted to sell me their services, or they weren't aware of it.

Quote
- You could gotten a Long Haul Trucker Deluxe (either the frameset or a used bike) for I'm assuming less than adding couplers to an existing bike.

I was aware of that model, and looked for it before I bought the regular one.  I wanted to find a new/unused frame in my size, but couldn't find one (since they're no longer manufactured).  They do make the "Traveler's Check" (a Cross Check with couplers), but its chain stays aren't long enough for me (I'd likely get a lot of heel strike with that one).

Thanks for your tips, in any case!

- Tim
« Last Edit: May 27, 2017, 01:03:30 pm by tbessie »
Touring: Bruce Gordon Rock 'n Road Tour (2014)
Touring: Custom Steve Potts Ti with S&S Couplers (2018)
Century/Weekend: Custom Titanium Firefly with Campagnolo Chorus (2017)
Every Day: Bianchi Brava frame, Campagnolo Mirage (1999)
Every Day Backup: Jamis Quest parts on a Surly Pacer frame (2012)

Offline opus

Re: Dual-mode bar-end shifters and Deore vs XT derailleurs - opinions?
« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2017, 02:49:46 pm »
I hope you finally got all sorted out.

Yes, thanks!

Quote
A couple things I'm not sure you were aware of:

- Your Microshift bar ends were already dual mode SIS/Friction

Really? I attempted to switch to Friction mode on the rear derailleur using the Allen bolt on the shifter, but it didn't seem to do anything helpful.  Perhaps I was doing it wrong.  I'll look at the manual for it.  The Shimano shifter is, at least, much more obvious in how to switch it over (there's a wire loop you just turn).

... I just looked at the manual - I guess all I had to do was loosen the cap with the Allen bolt, and rotate the cap (there's even a handy little flange to help the rotation).  D'oh!  All that work to install the new shifters.  Oh well, I guess I can say "Hey, it's all Shimano now!" or something. ;-)  Now I feel rather silly for spending all the money to "upgrade" it.

I'm surprised none of the mechanics I spoke with told me this; either they really wanted to sell me their services, or they weren't aware of it.

Quote
- You could gotten a Long Haul Trucker Deluxe (either the frameset or a used bike) for I'm assuming less than adding couplers to an existing bike.

I was aware of that model, and looked for it before I bought the regular one.  I wanted to find a new/unused frame in my size, but couldn't find one (since they're no longer manufactured).  They do make the "Traveler's Check" (a Cross Check with couplers), but its chain stays aren't long enough for me (I'd likely get a lot of heel strike with that one).

Thanks for your tips, in any case!

- Tim

I know how you feel. I've had my share of "Damn, I didn't know it would do that." It's definitely a shame none of the mechanics mentioned it.

I wouldn't be able to ride a Cross Check either with size 13/14 shoes. I even have my panniers set back, haha.



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