Ultegra vs. SRAM Rival

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by BiggMakk, Nov 13, 2006.

  1. pudster

    pudster New Member

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    I think that I kind of like the new Sram road stuff but there is one thing that is weird about the front deralleur. When you set the der. to sit above the chainwheels the front part of the der. sits very high up above the chainwheel and the back sits low. I guess that what I am trying to say is the cage does not follow the radius of the chainwheel like Campys and Shimanos. It seems to work well but it just does not look right. Anybody else notice this?
     


  2. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    Here's the MAIN reason why I think that Campagnolo has a slight edge over Shimano -- I found that I can EASILY downshift to a larger cog when ALREADY going uphill ... the first time I thought it was a fluke ... OR, that the chain had not actually moved (at all) even though I didn't hear/feel the grinding as it tried to shift onto a larger cog while already going uphill. A couple of more test shifts on the subsequent uphills, and sure enough ... the shifts onto the larger cogs were all-but-effortless.

    Previously, with Shimano Ultegra 6500 shifters, I had to go through the machinations of ensuring my chain began on the large ring before heading uphill. I briefly installed a triple so I would have a granny to bail-out onto as a way of avoiding a balky downshift. I was just on the verge (literally, days away ... the XTR Rapid Rise rear derailleur was in hand and "ready") of installing a RAPID RISE rear derailleur to facilitate downshifts before ascertaining that the Campagnolo ERGO shifters were capable of smooth downshifts when going uphill.

    I guess a previously unasked (by anyone else, AFAIK), so still unanswered, question is:

    How do the new SRAM shifters handle downshifting when under load?

    No doubt, the majority of riders are FLATLANDERS, so it doesn't matter whether you can downshift to yet a lower gear when already somewhere in the 6th MILE of a 10 mile uphill ... but, being able to downshift on the rear is more efficient than flopping the chain between the front chainrings UNLESS one is indeed using half-step gearing + a granny gearing.

    So, until SRAM is proven to be capable of downshifting under load, then I would suggest that Campagnolo's shifters should be considered to have a slight edge over both Shimano & SRAM shifters.
     
  3. Bro Deal

    Bro Deal New Member

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    Unfortunately that logic did not work well when SRAM started making their own rear derailleurs. It took them years to produce something (X.0) that would not break if you looked at it wrong.
     
  4. ScienceIsCool

    ScienceIsCool New Member

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    Mountain biking is a whole other game though. A bajillion g's of shock in any direction, while running your drivetrain through gritty muck. At least that's what it's like around here.

    John Swanson
    www.bikephysics.com
     
  5. BiggMakk

    BiggMakk New Member

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    I was the original question poster. Thanks to all for their input. My decision....Ultegra. Why? My current shifters are STI so there was no learning curve. Also, it's reliable and proven.

    So far I am very pleased. Crisp and sturdy. As for Ultegra being "common" compared to SRAM, I will just have to live with it. You can't have it all.
     
  6. rayhuang

    rayhuang New Member

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    Any new updates?? I have just had two new 10 speed Ultegra/Dura-ace grouppos in the last 5 months and although they work-I am amazed at how little they have improved over my 8 speed ultegra STI grouppo. I figured they would have made the 10 speed shift faster and smoother than my old stuff.


    Again-I am not saying Shimano doesnt work, just wondering if SRAM is crisper, smoother than STI and without as much fiddling with cable tension? For sure without ever trying it-I like the idea of dbl tap tech and the higher pivot on the brake levers allowing more power from braking on the hoods, where I like to ride 99% of the time.
     
  7. rayhuang

    rayhuang New Member

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    OHHH-this is a bit worrisome as quoted from the Cyclingnews.com review by James Huang.

    http://www.cyclingnews.com/tech.php?id=tech/2006/reviews/sram_force


    Technical perfection aside, DoubleTap is not without its idiosyncrasies. If you are already in the largest cog out back and try to shift into the next largest cog (that you don't really have), the result can be an inadvertent upshift, which can be rather disrupting as you're about to pop heading up that 12% grade. Pushing the lever past the upshift point so as to engage the other pawl will avoid that situation, but you do have to be conscious enough to do it. In addition, there is no trim function for the large chainring; instead, SRAM opted for more careful derailleur cage profiling. This is a functionally flawless arrangement, but those users who may try to move the cage ever so slightly inwards may accidentally dump the chain on to the small chainring. Again, 'overshifting' the lever cancels out the problem, but some mental adjustment is needed.
     
  8. rayhuang

    rayhuang New Member

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    I spoke with Sram TA and the gentleman explained that if you have cable tension too high, and your already in the largest cog that going for another gear-most end up going too far with the lever and end up trying to upshift!! But if the cable tension is correct-you end up clicking, but nothing happens (no shift occurs). In other words you get to hear a reassuring click, but no shift.
     
  9. Roadie_scum

    Roadie_scum New Member

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    -1

    I don't understand the appeal of Campy at all.

    99% of people are comfortable with what they're used to, be it Shimano or Campy. Give it a week and you can be happy with either. Campy is harder to maintain (doesn't wash as well), harder to get parts for and generally fiddlier. It's also more expensive. Sure, if you have a pro wrench available for free or you love taking stuff apart, maybe it's the best, but I wouldn't think so. I have ridden more than 10,000 miles into each of 9 speed and 10 speed Chorus as well as Shimano Dura-Ace and have fiddled on SRAM Force, Ultegra, 105, Record, etc. I've worked on Campy and Shimano bikes. Most people who 'swear by' Campy are either overwhelmed by brand love (my god, it's italian!) or haven't ridden the recent iterations of Shimano groups. Sure, Campy was much better 5 years ago... it just hasn't been recently (caveat - I haven't ridden the latest groups with the new crank design, these might be better than shimano).

    Shimano: good, reliable.
    Campy: good, reliable, expensive, fiddly.
    SRAM: an unknown quantity, good value (for Rival), reasonable performance, comfortable
     
  10. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    Okay -- let's talk dollars-and-cents (or, should I say dollars-and-"sense"?!?) ...

    If it were not for what I refer to as the Lance-effect, would you really be willing to pay almost 3x as much for a set of shifters for comparable fuctionality?

    OR, in the past, by your own declaration, almost 3x as much for a set of Shimano shifters for less functionality?

    Take the needle out of your arm ...

    TALK about being enamoured ... look in the mirror ...

    AND/OR

    Wake up and smell the coffee!
     
  11. Roadie_scum

    Roadie_scum New Member

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    I assume you're talking US prices since you talk about the lance effect. I'm not au fait with those since I'm not living there anymore. In Australia, Shimano groups are markedly cheaper than their campy equivalents. If the shifters are more expensive I guess that's a shame - I certainly wouldn't pay more than 3 X as much for Dura-Ace than Record (or chorus - I would choose the cheaper of the three every time, with a slight preference for DA if they were around the same price). The OP asked about groups. Shifter price isn't very relevant as you can't mix and match for the most part.

    Anyway, taking a refresher course from froogle.google.com suggests DA costs about the same as chorus and Ultegra is slightly cheaper. That makes it a no-brainer, especially as when I was last there (on my Campy Chorus bike) I had a hard time finding parts and things like chains, cassettes, etc were substantially more expensive.

    Anyway, its just my $0.02, as someone who has at least ridden all the groups in question and ridden substantial miles on both the major brands. Of course, I don't know about 07 Record since I haven't ridden it, as I said previously. I'm just putting my thoughts out there and I'm a little confused about the venom of your post. (I think it's venom - what exactly does 'take the needle out of your arm' mean?).

    Best of luck finding a functional well priced groupset OP.
     
  12. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    Well, YOU must know that the Mirage shifters are functionally comparable to the pre-Ultra Record shifters ...

    I don't believe Shimano uses anything other than bushings in their shifters (not that it makes a difference OTHER than in presumed longevity).

    The Centaur group may not be comparably finished as the Ultegra OR Dura Ace group, but it is functionally comparable ...

    Or, get a Veloce group + Chorus crank & BB to be functionally equiavlent to the Shimano "stuff." Beyond that, it's just bling-factor, IMO.

    I was merely replying with the tone you used ...
    LOL. That means that you (generically) are allowing the opiates which you've injected to induce an artificially induced stupor to dull your brain.

    You have already forgotten that your own sarcastic remark:



    Most people who 'swear by' Campy are either overwhelmed by brand love (my god, it's italian!) or haven't ridden the recent iterations of Shimano groups.



    Tsk. Tsk.

    Amen!
     
  13. Rocket^

    Rocket^ New Member

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    I have the SRAM Force and it has no problems shifting under a load. I live in West Virginia, so flat roads don't exist. This gruppo does take awhile to get used to, but once familiar with the shifting, it works great.
     
  14. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    THANKS for your feedback on how your SRAM shifters are handling downshifting ...
     
  15. Roadie_scum

    Roadie_scum New Member

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    Dude, sorry the 'my god, it's italian' comment wasn't directed at you. You have clearly put some thought into this and you know your stuff. I agree totally that Centaur is a great group - I put about 1000 miles on it and raced p/1/2, it went well.

    As far as the bushings in the shifters go, I haven't seen them run into trouble but probably both our sample sizes are limited.

    You're quite right that people who buy Shimano can be falling prey to the Lance effect - by the same token people who buy Campy can be falling for the exotica effect. Both have good and bad points.

    Anyway, sorry if I came across all wrong, hope me relating my experiences has been a little valuable at least.

    Peace.
     
  16. rayhuang

    rayhuang New Member

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    After a month of trainer rides, I finally got to take my SRAM Rival on the road and I am all smiles. Did only about 600' of clmibing, but made sure to up and down shift under load and it was all a no brainer. I also didnt realize till I was at the top of one short climb that I climbed it in the big ring and was back in last two cogs of my cassette and no rubbing on the front derailleur. I also descended pedaling in the 53/12 once and no rubbing, so at least on my bike I can use the whole cassette in the big ring without problem.
     
  17. trener1

    trener1 New Member

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    I am about to build up a new bike, I am leaning towards going with the SRAM rival group, currently I am riding Ultegra 9, once I build it up I'll let you know how it goes.
     
  18. rayhuang

    rayhuang New Member

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    If you stay with a Dura-ace cassette you can save nearly 200 grams over a full Ultegra grouppo. And a lot of it comes off the handlebars!!
     
  19. sogood

    sogood New Member

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    Campagnolo Chorus... Please consider! :D
     
  20. sideshow_bob

    sideshow_bob New Member

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    Too late for me I'm in the final build stage of a bike with SRAM Force on it (except the cranks). Like the other poster as soon as I have some miles in it I'll post a review. Like I've said before I believe SRAM make a superior (to Shimano) MTB product and I'll put my money where my mouth is and give the Force gruppo a go.

    FWIW it was about the same price as Chorus, or DA via mail order.

    --brett
     
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