Author Topic: Barend vs STI shifters  (Read 1225 times)

E-wan

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Barend vs STI shifters
« on: October 11, 2016, 05:49:47 AM »
I am putting together the last few bits to build my Thorn Audax bike on which I'm going to use a flared drop bar (on one midge) just absentmindedly orgered a pair of these.

Shimano Ultegra 6800 2x11 Speed STI Shifter Set
http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/shimano-ultegra-6800-2x11-speed-sti-shifter-set/rp-prod108736


I am now thinking of using bar end shifters instead
Shimano Dura-Ace 9000 SL-BSR1 Double 11 Spd Bar End Shifters
https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/gear-shifters/shimano-duraace-9000-slbsr1-double-11-spd-bar-end-shifters/

Any thoughts on the advantages of one of the other. I like the idea of being able to change multiple sets of gears in one go at the bar end shifter and not having an indexed shifter for the front chain ring.

although I have several bikes I have never owned one will drop bars before and I've never used either of these sort of shifters. Previously i have used mountain bike grip shift, thumb shifters and and rholoff shifter which I liked,and mtb triger shifters which I did not get on with particularly well.

Thanks

Ewan

Tiberius

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2016, 08:25:09 AM »
Coincidentally, approximately six months ago I was in a very similar position. I had only used the Rohloff or trigger shifters and was putting together my first drop bar bike. I was going with 3 x 10 speed and was wondering STI or bar end shifters ??

Despite never having even ridden a bike with STI shifters, I went with a complete Shimano 105 groupset (STI) throughout.
Fitting and setting them up was fairly straight forward…..poor instructions but YouTube is brilliant for this stuff.

That bike now has 2,000 miles on it and I have grown to really like the STI's. They work perfectly and I love having the gear change/brakes right there at my finger ends….and I think that that was the ‘deal breaker’ for me. I really didn’t like the idea of reaching down every time I needed to change gear. The indexed front mech’ works perfectly. The 105 STI’s have a ‘trim’ position which allows you to slightly alter the front mech’ position to reduce any chain rub noises.

When I was researching this build I read that STI’s are more difficult to repair than bar end shifters, and I can see how this is true. However, this bike is not going anywhere too far away from civilisation and so I reckon that I could repair/replace without too much hassle if I needed to. So far the set up hasn’t needed any messing with or adjusting, everything works perfectly.

Obviously I can’t say for certain if they are ‘better’ than bar end shifters, but I can say that for me STI’s are great and that I would definitely choose them again.

I guess that you need to try both types and see which one you prefer……but I didn’t bother !!!….. :P


leftpoole

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2016, 10:13:58 AM »
Hello,
I have used both types of shifters. it is only after use that one can appreciate either type.
However I only (!) own two bikes now (plus a Brompton) and both bikes (one is a Club Tour) have bar end shifters.
Being honest I do have a pair of Sti shifters in a box ready to put onto my Condor fratello when I have time during the coming Winter.
So overall it is a 50% 50% thing deciding!
John

mickeg

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #3 on: October 12, 2016, 12:58:10 AM »
I have been using bar end shifters on several bikes since the 1980s.  At this time I have eight speed indexed bar ends on my Thorn Sherpa and on my foldup bike.  I also used the same eight speed indexed bar ends on my Long Haul Trucker before I got rid of it.

Last winter I built up a bike with randoneuring geometry to use for reasonably fast riding for exercise.  I had tried a brifter before and did not like it, but I thought I should give it another try.  Thus I bought a used brifter for this bike for the rear and am using a front friction downtube shifter.

Bottom line - I like both bar end shifters and brifters.  Thus, I have no plans to change anything.  The thing I like most about the bar ends for touring is that when I put my hand on the shifter, I immediately get some feedback on approximately where my chain is on the cassette or which chainring I am using because of the feel of the lever position.  I do not get any such feedback from the brifter, thus I often find myself cross chaining on the bike with the brifter.  But it is easy to avoid cross chaining on bar end shifters because I know where my chain is from the feel of the lever.

I use the drops on the drop bars when I have head winds and if I want to go fast, thus I do not mind leaning farther forward for using the bar end shifters.  But some people hate bar end shifters because they do not want to reach down to shift them.

Relayer

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #4 on: October 12, 2016, 07:40:55 AM »
The thing I like most about the bar ends for touring is that when I put my hand on the shifter, I immediately get some feedback on approximately where my chain is on the cassette or which chainring I am using because of the feel of the lever position.  I do not get any such feedback from the brifter, thus I often find myself cross chaining on the bike with the brifter.  But it is easy to avoid cross chaining on bar end shifters because I know where my chain is from the feel of the lever.

This advantage is even more pronounced when cycling in the dark, e.g. commuting, audax etc

leftpoole

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #5 on: October 12, 2016, 09:51:04 AM »
I should mention that my bar end shifters are indexed.
John

mickeg

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #6 on: October 12, 2016, 06:14:12 PM »
...
I am now thinking of using bar end shifters ...
I like the idea of being able to change multiple sets of gears in one go at the bar end shifter and not having an indexed shifter for the front chain ring.
...

I should have mentioned this above when I said I put a brifter on my rando bike last winter - my brifter allows me to downshift one, two or three gears at once.  Upshifts are very fast with a push button.  I am using a Campy 10 speed brifter on a Shimano 8 speed cassette and eight speed rear derailleur.

Thus rapid shifting in the rear works with my brifter setup, not any slower than on my bar end shifter.

That said, my front derailleur is controlled by a down tube friction shifter, so that is not quick at all because I am using a triple crank. 

But since you are looking at a double, I see no reason for friction front shifter to be any slower than indexed for the front.  And friction would allow you to trim it if you get any derailleur cage rubbing on the chain.

The thing I like most about the bar ends for touring is that when I put my hand on the shifter, I immediately get some feedback on approximately where my chain is on the cassette or which chainring I am using because of the feel of the lever position.  I do not get any such feedback from the brifter, thus I often find myself cross chaining on the bike with the brifter.  But it is easy to avoid cross chaining on bar end shifters because I know where my chain is from the feel of the lever.

This advantage is even more pronounced when cycling in the dark, e.g. commuting, audax etc

Good point.  I wear bifocal glasses when riding, thus I can't focus in a quick glance at the chainrings or cassette where my chain is.  So for me daytime and night time are the same in that regard.

I should mention that my bar end shifters are indexed.
John

I think 98 percent of the bar end shifters in use are indexed.  I can't remember the last time I saw the old Suntour ratchet shifters or the Shimano ones with return spring in use on a bike.  But I have a couple of the old friction ones in storage even though I can't imagine that I will ever use them again.

Danneaux

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #7 on: October 12, 2016, 07:23:27 PM »
Quote
I can't remember the last time I saw the old Suntour ratchet shifters or the Shimano ones with return spring in use on a bike.
  ;D Come to Danneaux's place, and you'll see plenty! ;)

That said, I sure like the indexed shifting on my tandem's 6-sp Suntour freewheel -- it is a lonnnnng way back to it, and the indexing definitely helps in this case. I also prefer indexing for casettes of 7-sp and up, but give me friction for 5- and 6-speeds (the wider spacing is more forgiving).

By the way, my favorite shifters are mounted on the downtube. Go figure!

All the best,

Dan.

mickeg

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #8 on: October 12, 2016, 09:04:11 PM »
...
By the way, my favorite shifters are mounted on the downtube. Go figure!
...

Glad you like them, but that is part of the reason that I have not put one mile on the bike I have that has friction downtube for both front and rear this year.  I love the way the bike handles, but hate shifting it.  I can live with downtube for front only, since most shifts are in the back, but downtube for both front and back are another matter.

E-wan

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #9 on: October 12, 2016, 10:24:11 PM »

Thanks for your comments and suggestions

Decided to go with bar end shifters,
I will be using a bike for commuting all winter and long-distance rides including at night.

from looking at photos on Google images it seems like there are two options for routing the gear cables from bar-end shifters. keeping them under the grips all the way up to where the grips finish on the tops or having a couple of rolls of tape then The cable exeting.
see fig 2&4 on this page.

http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/bar-end-shifter-service#article-section-1

I would prefer to have the cables under the grips all the way to the tops but wonder if that would create too much friction. planning on using Dura Ace gear cables and outers.


The picture of the green bicycle half way down this page shows a picture of the bars I am using in the orientation I'm planning on mounting them.

any thoughts on which cable routing option would be better?

thanks again for your suggestions so far

Ewan


mickeg

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #10 on: October 12, 2016, 11:05:26 PM »
I do the full length cable runs.  I changed handlebars this year on my Sherpa, photo is the new Sherpa bars.  This is a frame size 610S, I am not sure if I needed tandem length cables or not but I might have because it was a really long cable run.  My notes say I used 2200 mm cable for the rear derailleur, but I do not know if that is considered tandem length or not.  I remember being surprised how much outer housing I needed for this cable run.  A standard cable kit might not have enough outer housing.  I used generic compressionless shifter cable, not any special name brand.

I use eight speed gearing, that has a lot of cable pull per shift and I do not have a problem with that long of a cable run, the shifter stays in adjustment quite well.  But if you have less cable pull per shift, a long cable run might be a bit of an issue.

My foldup bike uses full length outer housing and tandem cable length.  I find on that bike that when I downshift, I have to pull the shift lever slightly more back than the index point to get the bike to shift.  But in that case I blame the full length outer housing.  The folding mechanism of the bike requires more cable length.

I have at times used a very thin lubricant (maybe it was Tri-Flow?) in the housing to reduce friction.  But I do not recall if I did that on the Sherpa.  But I know I did that on my foldup bike.
« Last Edit: October 12, 2016, 11:09:32 PM by mickeg »

E-wan

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #11 on: October 12, 2016, 11:36:10 PM »
thanks

Which edge of the bars aught i to tape the cable outers to before applying the bar tape so as to feel them less through the bar tape when gripping the bars?

Ewan

leftpoole

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #12 on: October 13, 2016, 09:11:32 AM »
I exit the cables below the end of the brake levers. They are easy to get at and tidy plus less friction. The way of taking these cables to the top of the bars is as far as I am aware, a fairly recent design.
John

mickeg

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Re: Barend vs STI shifters
« Reply #13 on: October 13, 2016, 02:11:17 PM »
thanks

Which edge of the bars aught i to tape the cable outers to before applying the bar tape so as to feel them less through the bar tape when gripping the bars?

Ewan

I use strapping tape (tape with filament threads in it for strength) to tape my cables to the bars to hold the housing in place before I put on the handlebar tape.  The outer housing is quite stiff and this works best for me.  Also with new bars, i like to ride the bike several times before I put on handlebar tape to make sure I get the brake levers exactly where I want them on the bars, the strapping tape keeps everything in place for those rides.

Starting at the shifter, I run the housing directly under the bars up to about 3 inches below the brake levers, then I curve the housing towards the inside of the bars along the brake lever so that the cable is parallel to the bars as it runs along the brake lever body.  The bars I used have holes drilled for brake/shifter cables just above the brake levers and again near the tops, I ran the derailleur cables inside the bars at that point.

You will feel the housing, but you will get used to it.  The key point is that you do not want cable on the bars where you put weight on your hands.

I used to drill the handlebars and run the cables inside, but I have been nervous about the newer extra light bars being weakened by this so I no longer drill them.  But if the factory drilled the bars, I trust that the factory knew what they were doing.

When wrapping the tape, I start at the shifter and I wrap the tape a couple times under the cables (between the cable and the bars) so that about an inch (a few cm) of cable outer housing is exposed before I wrap the tape over housing for the rest of the tape job.. 

A final point on installing bar end shifters on the bars, get them on pretty tight, the wrench is counter-clockwise to tighten, not clockwise.  You do not want the shifters to loosen on the bars while riding.