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Cassettes - worth paying extra?

andy_nDandy_nD Posts: 40
edited March 2009 in Road buying advice
The constant grinding sound coming from my drivetrain tells me it's probably time for a new chain/cassette. I currently ride a 12-27T block, which I think is only available in Ultegra, but the price is horrific! 105/Tiagra seems to be about half the price (although only available up to 25T) - I'm just wondering what the difference is across the different levels? Presumably there's some weight differences, but am I likely to see a big difference in terms of longevity (which might make any cost savings somewhat of a false economy) or smoothness of gear changes (like there is with front sprockets)?

Many thanks!

Posts

  • DLH1985DLH1985 Posts: 56
    8 in stock of the 12-27 ratios:

    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Shima ... 360020761/

    Try SRAM prices as well; from wiggle's notes at the bottom of the page "Shimano and Campagnolo are not interchangeable so you will need to match the cassette to your levers for smooth and precise shifting. Sram and Shimano chains and cassettes will work together as they use the same spacing."

    Hope that helps :-)
  • dilemnadilemna Posts: 2,277
    DLH1985 wrote:
    8 in stock of the 12-27 ratios:

    http://www.wiggle.co.uk/p/cycle/7/Shima ... 360020761/

    Try SRAM prices as well; from wiggle's notes at the bottom of the page "Shimano and Campagnolo are not interchangeable so you will need to match the cassette to your levers for smooth and precise shifting. Sram and Shimano chains and cassettes will work together as they use the same spacing."

    Hope that helps :-)

    Certainly not my experience as I use a 700C rear wheel with Campag Record rear hub and sprockets 11-23 on a bike with Shimano Ultegra drivetrain - chain, chainset, rear mech, front mech and shifters with no probs what so ever. Shifting is very sweet. I think the important thing is not to mix speeds within the drive chain and shifters.
    Life is like a roll of toilet paper; long and useful, but always ends at the wrong moment. Anon.
    Think how stupid the average person is.......
    half of them are even more stupid than you first thought.
  • maddog 2maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
    9 or 10 speed?
    Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer
  • dilemnadilemna Posts: 2,277
    9 spd.
    Life is like a roll of toilet paper; long and useful, but always ends at the wrong moment. Anon.
    Think how stupid the average person is.......
    half of them are even more stupid than you first thought.
  • maddog 2maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
    depends on how much weight is important really. The Ultegra runs the spider design so is a few grams better off.

    you can get a SRAM PG950 in 12-26 for £32 - bit cheaper than the £45ish for a 12-27 Ultegra

    http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/Mode ... elID=17902

    or perhaps a HG50 12/25 for £22 see ebay 200314605679

    or a HG70 12/25 for £29 see ebay 200322778148

    but yes, if you want 12-27 the it's Ultegra or DA in 9spd
    Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer
  • PoulsyPoulsy Posts: 155
    Any reason why you couldnt use a 9 speed MTB cassette? SRAM PG950 11-28?
  • maddog 2maddog 2 Posts: 8,114
    no, that should be fine.

    Strictly speaking Shimano road mechs are only capable of handling a 27t sprocket but in practice 28t is usually fine, maybe with a tweak to the tension screw.

    The latest Shimano and SRAM 10spd road cassettes have a 12-28t option. Gives you a decent low gear with a compact (33-28 = 31.8" : that's lower than a 12-25 with a triple)
    Facts are meaningless, you can use facts to prove anything that's remotely true! - Homer
  • I have a bike with 105, and a bike with Ultegra - they're both great but every time I get on the Ultegra I'm impressed with just how much crisper the shifting is. Both bikes' kit is equally new (ie no appreciable wear at the moment), so the difference isn't there; but of course I'm talking about an entire groupset, so the cassette on its own might not make such a difference...
    Litespeed Tuscany, Hope/Open Pro, Ultegra, pulling an Extrawheel trailer, often as not.

    FCR 4 (I think?)
    Twitter: @jimjmcdonnell
  • crankycrankcrankycrank Posts: 1,830
    I'll make a very general statement and say that what you are usually paying for with cassettes is higher price = lighter weight but not necessarily longevity or better shifting, provided you're talking about the top 3 or 4 tiers of a mfgs groupsets. I've got Ultegra but use 105 cassetes which shift just as well as the Ultegra and are at least as durable but weigh a few grams more and cost a few quid less.
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