Bicycle Travel > Gear Talk

Replacing my 25 yr old derailleur, any suggestions


I have a 28 yr old road bike that I am using for touring and recreation riding.  Finally the derailleur broke.  I want to replace the derailleur.  The bike was an expensive bike and still very comfortable to ride.  I have a triple crack of 48/38/28 and a 5 cog freewheel of 32-14.  

I have several questions on new derailleurs.
1.  Is there a real difference between MTB and road derailleurs.
2.  Looking at road derailleurs, they don't list the maximum size of rear cog they will accept, but they do list long cage vs short.  Do I simply want a long cage and will the long cage work with a 32 or 34 tooth rear cog?
3.  Any suggestions on make/model of derailleurs to buy for my replacement.

Finally, I noticed that newer handlebars are wider than my bike's current handlebars.  Is wider more comfortable for touring?

The biggest difference between mountain and road derailluers are the chain wrap and maximum cog size.  In general, mountain derailluers have a greater chain wrap and can handle a larger cog.  Since you have a triple crank and a 32 cog, go with a mountain derailluer, but make sure it is not a "rapid rise" derailluer because it will make your shifter work opposite to what you are used to.  Go to for more information.  For a replacement, I'd consider a Shimano Deore LX.


Assuming that you aren't a small person and need narrow bars, yes, generally wider bars are more comfortable and give the steering a feel of more stability.


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