Shimano & Campy: A difficult situation (long)

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by gregk, Mar 2, 2004.

  1. gregk

    gregk New Member

    Aug 20, 2003
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    I know everyone has seen the endless debates between Campagnolo and Shimano. However, I have a unique situation on my hands and I would really appreciate some advice. I have 9-speed Campagnolo on my 2001 Marin San Marino. It is all Veloce, with the exception of the front derailleur, which is Daytona (precursor to Centaur). Here’s my situation: I am a collegiate racer. I have been having some mechanical problems lately. First, with the shifters, then with a noisy rear derailleur, now with the chain. At my last race, I was dealing with the chain, and nobody had the Campy-specific chain tool or knew how to fix the problem. I half-fixed it and raced… luckily without any catastrophic failures. Another issue: I had my race wheels on my bike, but I wasn’t able to bring my spare wheels. If I flatted, I would have been out of luck. If I had Shimano, I could borrow a team mate’s spare wheel and be fine.
    The second part of the equation: I am getting a custom TT/triathlon bike in the near future. I had planned on getting full Chorus 10 with bar-end shifters. Now I’m debating going with Shimano. That raises a problem- I can’t interchange parts and wheels between the two bikes. The solution to that would be to convert my road bike to Shimano. I would almost definitely go with Ultegra on both bikes, since two Dura Ace groups are out of the budget (unless I can find a screaming deal on a brand new ’03 9-speed group). I’d also have to sell my Campy Zonda wheels, unless I could find a cassette that will make them Shimano compatible. SO… I’m asking this: is it worth it to go Shimano? Despite my love for Campy, I have this nagging feeling that Shimano would be smarter in the long run. Since I will be competing a lot, I can’t afford to have my bikes in the shop for days at a time.
    A third issue: Shimano upgraded DA to 10-speed; does this mean that Ultegra will follow suit next year? I am getting the TT bike for triathlon collegiate nationals, so I can’t wait until next year while all the 10 speed is phased in. Is it worth it to get 9-speed Ultegra now, only to have it be outdated in 1-2 years? Remember, the key here is ease of service and availability of parts.
    Right now it seems that Shimano is more practical in the long run, although the switch would be a pain in the ass (selling wheels, group, etc). But again, the other side of the coin is that Shimano might end up not being better than Campy (service-wise) during the current 9-to-10 speed evolution. I compare Campagnolo to Shimano like Ferrari is to Honda. When the Ferrari works, it WORKS. It is smooth, quick… almost an extension of your body. The Honda may lack emotion, but it makes up for it 10 fold in reliability. Everyone can change the oil on a Civic, but not a 360 Modena.


    -I already have it
    -Thumb levers (personal preference)
    -10 speed
    -Aesthetic appeal/quality

    -Lack of tools
    -Nobody keeps parts in stock
    -Can’t interchange with Shimano
    -More expensive


    -Parts availability
    -Ease of service
    -Lance rides it!

    -9 speed
    -May get outdated
    -No thumb lever
    -No passion!

  2. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

    Oct 16, 2003
    Likes Received:
    You don't need a campy tool to work on a Campy chain. Even if you had a shimano 9 speed setup and threw on a different wheel, you might still need to readjust the RD to make it shift well, since there are differences in hubs and tolerances. A shimano 9 speed cassette/wheel will work with an otherwise 9 speed campy setup,but might require some derailer adjustment. If you had campy 10 on one bike and 9 on another,you still could not interchange parts. Ultegra will be 10 speed next year. You really need to have a better grasp of alot of things,do your own work and forget about the shop. Campy and tools is not an issue as the only ones that are unique are BB and cassette lockring tool, and with chorus and record the same tool does both and it's cheap!...'Shimano ease of service'?? You gotta be kidding. for the most part, it's disposable.