Category Archives: shifter

Drop Bars of Glory

The conversion of my tourer from its original MTB-style shifters/brakes and pursuit bars to drops has been underway for a while now. It’s pretty-much been converted; the brakes are still a wee finicky and the derailleurs need to be precision-tuned.

Out with the old….

This was my Christmas gift; a pair of NOS 8-speed RSX brifters, a Nitto B-115 Rando bar and some cross brakes. I’m not complaining – I was expecting any old drop bar, with some bar ends and some generic aero levers, so you can understand my elation!

Of note: without a mount-on point for the barrel adjuster for the F. derailleur, I have had to “eye-ball” it, just simply adjusting the pull by loosing and tightening the cable bolt. It works OK, but I *might* need to find another solution…. However, nothing else major has come up on the drive train; the standard MTB parts seem to work fine with the brifters, even meshing well with the old 7-speed cassette in back. I also got a 13/15 cone wrench (I’m cheap, so I only got one and use a wrench for the locknuts), so I pulled apart both hubs for the first service they have had in 16 years and ~6000 kms. Only sign of damage was moderate pitting on the downward-facing sides of the cones of the front hub. The rear hub is golden.

…and in with the new!

The largest problem I encountered during the upgrade was something I would have never expected – brake clearance. It turns out that the regular “low-profile” cantis on bikes, generally, cannot be used with brake/shifter combos, because of the mechanical advantage. They only have 1.5 mm clearance on each side, and my rims ain’t that perfect! I now have to invest an additional $40 to get a pair of wide-angle cantis, which, according to many cylocross folks, will fix the cable pull problem.