Ultegra or Dura Ace Cassettes?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Peter Verdesi, Sep 13, 2004.

  1. Peter Verdesi

    Peter Verdesi New Member

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    I'm looking to get a 12/23 cassette for my bike which came with a Dura Ace cassette 11/21 (what can I say it's hilly in upstate New York...hard to push that small cog). Aside from the obvious weight advantage that DA stuff has can anyone tell me why spend the extra $110.00 for the DA over Ultegra? Supergo.com has Ultegra for about $30.00 where as the DA is close to $140.00.
     
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  2. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

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    Bling and poseur' points.......PRICELESS!!
     
  3. beerbecue

    beerbecue New Member

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    Get an SRAM cassette. I swapped out an Ultegra with one, very nice...
     
  4. dgow

    dgow New Member

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  5. supergiraffe

    supergiraffe New Member

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    I personally think, in my experience, that the Ultegra stuff might possibly shift slightly better than the Dura Ace cassette (comparing 9-speed double to 9-speed double). My wife's bike has (1) Dura Ace 7800 rear derailleur; (2) Dura Ace 12-25 cassette; (3) Shimano HG-93 chain; and (4) Shimano 600 "Ultegra" short reach brifters. My bike has the same derailleur and chain, with an Ultegra 12-25 cassette and 105 "black" brifters (which appear to be mechanically the same as her brifters). We go to the same bike shop, and her bike has been tuned-up several times, particularly with respect to the shifting (incl. checking derailleur hanger alignment, etc.), but it never shifts quite as cleanly and precisely as mine does in the rear. The shifts are always a little clunky, particularly on hills. Now, there are many variables that could affect this, including cable maintenance and technique, but I think that the discrepancy in shifting could also be because the lighter Dura Ace Ti cogs are slightly more flexy than the Ultegra's steel.

    Another thing to consider is that the Dura Ace's Ti cogs supposedly wear faster than Ultegra. I will likely eventually upgrade my Litespeed to Dura Ace 10-speed, but will probably wait until the spring, and substitute the '05 Ultegra 10-speed cassette for the Dura Ace in order to get the added durability and save some $$.

    Despite all this, the Dura Ace cassette is "significantly" lighter than Ultegra -- so if you're looking for the ultimate in weight savings, then Dura Ace might be the way to go.
     
  6. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Boudreaux: Disagree on the bling factor....how many people can tell the difference without getting down and closely inspecting the cassette?

    Sure, I've gotten some good poseur points from my FSA Team Carbon crankset, but not one person has said "hey, that's a cool DA 12/25 cassette"....and we've got some real tech geeks here. For poseur value, I'd say just about anything CF will out-bling a DA cassette.

    Having said that, the DA 9 sp cassette shifts great and is doing fine at 4000 miles. Besides, I'm saving 100's of grams of rotating weight.
     
  7. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    The Ultegra cassette should work fine and offer significantly more bang for the buck over DA. And $30 is a pretty decent price for an Ultegra cassette. Just think ... you can buy four Ultegra cassettes (and have some coin left over) for the price of one DA cassette. That way you could have a couple of different gear ratios for different types of terrain. Does that put it into perspective?

    I've been looking at Supergo.com also. Too bad they are currently OOS. :(

    http://www.supergo.com/profile.cfm?LPROD_ID=8173&lsubcat_id=7623&lcat_id=7604&referpage=
     
  8. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    DHK, doesn't the rotational weight savings matter less the closer you are to the axle?
     
  9. dhk

    dhk New Member

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    Yes it certainly does. I was just kidding about the big advantage of the rotational weight savings.....any difference in rotational inertia for a cassette would be pretty neglible.

    Bottomline, do like the DA cassette, but agree the cost is out of line compared to value. Suspect that Shimano makes a big profit on anything DA, just like Record has got to be the profit maker for Campy.

    May replace it with a SRAM or Ultegra after it wears out; will have to see how long it lasts.
     
  10. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

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    My 105s also shift flawlessly. That 'rotating weight' ain't exactly located in a place to do you alot of good, and in something like a 12x25 you are only saving 45 grams or so.
     
  11. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    OK. I didn't realize you were kidding. :rolleyes: Some posters here take their weight savings very seriously (read, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder).

    The Ti cogs will probably last quite a while.

    The bicycle components biz sounds like the computer biz in that the big profit margins are in the so called high end components and the profit on the "lesser" components are derived through volume sales.

     
  12. boudreaux

    boudreaux New Member

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    No longer than steel and maybe not even that long.They are not about long life, just saving weight.Some of the cross chaining weight challenged types always using the big cogs will likely wear them even quicker.
     
  13. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Well, I suppose that's better than the cross dressing weight challenged types! :eek:
     
  14. davidbod

    davidbod New Member

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    www.jensonusa.com DA 7700 9 speed 12-23T = $77.00

    This is one of those parts between DA and Ultegra that give you a big weight advantage. If weight is not a big deal then save the bucks for something else.
     
  15. malcomm

    malcomm New Member

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    When I bought my DA equiped bike, I got rid of the DA cassette to get a better ratio. Advice of several friends who run DA was that the DA cassettes wear out pretty quick which is fair enough as they are made for racing. After all how long do formulae one engines last?
    Anyway I went with Sram as it appears to be a higher quality than Ultegra without breaking the bank. Having owned Ultegra bikes I think the Sram might shift better....
     
  16. mikem

    mikem New Member

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    I just installed an FSA Compact crank and could probably use the change from 12/23 to you 11/21 - wanna sell it? How many miles on it ?
     
  17. rv

    rv New Member

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    peter...was the da cassette a 10 spd? they're considerably more than the 9 spd stuff.

    fwiw...I use da for racing, ultegra for training.
     
  18. hotlipsmc

    hotlipsmc New Member

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    sorry, what is "bling"??
     
  19. Peter Verdesi

    Peter Verdesi New Member

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    Thanks for all the posts. Very helpful. I'm using a 9 speed cassette and I'm going to use the DA for racing as well. As far a selling or trading the 11/21, I'm going to keep it. I'd like to have several gearing options. Any thoughts on buying used DA cassettes on Ebay (about half the cost)?
     
  20. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    Flashy or flamboyant.
     
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