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Anyone else hate integrated shift/brake levers?

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Anyone else hate integrated shift/brake levers?

Old 03-09-20, 10:06 PM
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Integrated shifting is so much better! I love it. Everything is right there. It's progress and one that improved cycling. I haven't tried electronic shifting yet but I will.
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Old 03-09-20, 10:42 PM
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I currently have 3 older steel road bikes.

1984/5 Spectrum, 6 speed downtube Dura Ace.

​1996ish Voodoo gravel bike rebuilt as a 1x10 with a bar end shifter.

2001 Tallerico with 10 speed Campy Chorus ergo shifters.

All downright amazing bikes. I would say Ergo>bar end>downtube.

For every metric I can think of. I'd race my Tallerico tomorrow, no concerns. I do race the voodoo, I'll upgrade eventually for weight and wheelbase. The shifting is good enough.

I wouldn't enter the overweight citizens race on the Spectrum, I'd die. I love it but progress has marched forward.

I don't hate downtube shifters at all. I don't hate steering wheel stick shifts either. They are classics now, fun for loads of reasons. Not performance.
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Old 03-09-20, 10:55 PM
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How does the I-Spec thing work? Is it like a regular thumbshifter? I've never ridden an indexed shift bike before.
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Old 03-10-20, 12:07 AM
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Originally Posted by bluehills3149 View Post
As for cost, downtube shifters up to 8 spd are cheap and easy to find. Go to 9 or 10 and you're limited to Dura-ace at $90+ or crappy suntour which ghost shift and last 12 months. My flatbar "pub bike" which I built largely from my parts bin, the downtube 9 spd shifters were the greatest cost.
I've been using SunTour DT shifters on my 9-speed for 12 years. Never had an issues at all. Probably taken them apart, cleaned and re-greased once. (I believe they are Superbe but I spent the first 10 years with no clue what they were. They just works as a shifter should and handled 9-speed easily.)
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Old 03-10-20, 03:41 AM
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Originally Posted by prairiepedaler View Post
How does the I-Spec thing work? Is it like a regular thumbshifter? I've never ridden an indexed shift bike before.
It is a system by Shimano for flat bar shifters/brakes. It uses seperate trigger shifter and brake lever, but both mount to a single handlebar clamp (i.e. only the brake lever has a clamp). Sram has a similar system, the MatchMaker.
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Old 03-10-20, 05:56 AM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
I have always done unsupported touring with bar ends. Usually, it's fine, but there was one day riding across PA that I really wish I had brifters. There was a long stretch of road that had lots of ups and downs. The shoulder was often bumpy and/or gravelly. I didn't feel comfortable taking my hands off the bars to shift at speed as I made the transition from down to up. I ended up coasting the descents and waiting for the bike to slow down enough until it "caught up" to the low gear the bike was in, which doesn't take long when you're fully loaded. Then I would start grinding up the next incline. Had I had brifters I could have shifted cog to cog pedaled to take advantage of momentum longer and conserve energy.
I rode in Eastern Pa a couple of times, brought my bike when visiting someone. The first ride, it seemed my heart rate was always at LT. Steep little climb, steep little descent, rinse and repeat. The climbs always seemed just long enough that you couldn't maintain your momentum and power over the top. It took me a good 30-45 minutes to get a rhythm.

I had bar ends, so shifting wasn't an issue, I could just slide my hand down to shift without taking my hand completely off the bar, but I know what you mean about the rough, narrow, winding, shoulderless roads with poor sightlines. (Also, lots of cow pats in some places.) Fortunately there wasn't much traffic in most spots, once I got away from the highway (I was staying in a hotel).
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Old 03-10-20, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Rajflyboy View Post
Iím getting tired of integrated brake/shift levers. Separate Is much better in my opinion. Makes it easier to change out one or the other if you want to. (Less expensive too)
i like both. I use integrated (sti) on my road bikes. I love being able to move my hands from the drops to brake hoods and being able to shift and brake in either position. Thereís no doubt that cost is a penalty though, but the sti levers last forever, imo. Iíve broken on lever since the first 8 spd version came out decades ago.

i use separate on my flat bar mtn/snow bikes. There really is only one hand position so integrating doesnít have the same value. Also, mtn/snow bikes seem to need a lot more parts (ie crashes, bad conditions, etc). I break stuff every season it seems riding off road.
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Old 03-10-20, 11:40 AM
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Sorry if I'm derailing this thread, but I'm going to be building up a bike, my Trek 750, with drops, and I'm not even sure what options are available for drop bars. It seems like brifters, bar ends, or down tubes are about it; am I missing something?
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Old 03-10-20, 09:35 PM
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I do not like it when brake levers also are used as shifters but my integrated Di2 levers are some of the finest shifting I have experienced. I can also say I love my Gevenalle levers which have Dura Ace 9 speed downtube shifters right on the front of the brake lever. I will say I much prefer integration to downtube shifting (and yes I have a bike with that as well Dura Ace 6 speed and the shifting is fantastic but reaching down ain't fun).

I didn't hate my bar end shifters but I certainly didn't re-spec them on my new touring bike when I built it up and certainly did not appreciate my knees getting in on the shifting action sometimes nor other fixtures if I leaned it wrong.

What I would really love to see is the SRAM S500 brake levers with SRAM R2C shifters on the front that work for Shimano 9 and 11 speed (road and mountain) and you will have my undivided attention. That would sell like hot cakes for sure, those levers are super ergonomic and comfortable at least in my hands and the Return to Center stuff is cool but not yet Shimano compatible (which makes sense SRAM is a direct competitor). Basically taking the Gevenalle concept and making it more modern and sleek and comfortable.
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Old 03-10-20, 09:48 PM
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I am still trying to get used to them.
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