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Defy.....my logic, perhaps poor logic though

benmitchell423benmitchell423 Posts: 29
edited August 2013 in Road buying advice
Morning people.

Looking for a bit of advice. I bought a Defy 4 Compact in September last year as my first road bike. With family commitments etc. I didn’t want to/couldn’t afford to up the budget much more. It is likely that this will remain my bike for the foreseeable future and I was thinking that I would ideally like to rid myself of the thumb shifters that are present on the 2300. I know the consensus is to save pennies for a new better bike etc. but as I said it is likely that this will be my steed for the next few years. I am slowly upping the miles and rides and am now becoming frustrated with the thumb shifters, mainly due to spending more time on the drops as I ride I think.

Here is my thinking:

I have already replaced the tyres and tubes and this seemed in my newbie state to make some difference to the ride.

I would like to get rid of the thumb operation so thought about slowly changing over the components to a higher groupset to achieve this. It will be easier to justify the cost of the parts here and there to the “boss” with the potential for contributions/presents of the various parts.

Is it worth it? In theory should circumstances change and I can buy a new bike in a couple of years, I would keep this one as a poorer weather/turbo ride etc so I wouldn’t be chucking money away would i?

If I were to slowly upgrade, what level should I look at, stick with Tiagra or maybe 105?

I know I will be looking at new cassettes, shifters, derailleurs etc. Just after some thoughts from those more experienced than me.

Discuss please…..

Posts

  • bazzer2bazzer2 Posts: 189
    Pay attention to how many gears your shifter has. This will mean you have to change all parts to match simultaneously. So, shifter > cassette. Then, can the wheel take the cassette you need > new wheel > new bike? etc, etc....

    This is the major PITA when 'trading up', most other stuff is compatible to an extent.
  • elderoneelderone Posts: 1,410
    Im the opposite,I bought my defy4 because it has 2300 on it.I like it alot and has never let me down.
    There is nothing stopping you upgrading yours so if you feel the need then make it so.
    Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori
  • AlitogataAlitogata Posts: 148
    Wait until 2014 when shimano will upgrade the 2300 8 speed groupset with the Claris 2400 new groupset that has no thumb shifters. It will be compatible with the 2300 groupset's parts so you can buy only the shifters.

    http://www.bikeradar.com/road/news/arti ... ook-36427/
  • 16mm16mm Posts: 545
    edited July 2013
    double post thingy
  • 16mm16mm Posts: 545
    16mm wrote:
    So this is just to change from the thumb shift when going down the cassette?

    It's a lot of faf and $$$ for such a small thing.

    And you'll need to move your hands more when changing on the tops. I can use campag downshift buttons from the tops without moving my hands. With the upgraded shimano you'll need to let go of the tops to change down.

    Back in the day.....downtube shifters .....etc ........
  • gozzygozzy Posts: 640
    I'd probably wait for Claris to come out. In the meantime you could keep an eye on ebay for Shimano 600 or RX100 shifters, both have 8 speed dual control levers.
  • gozzygozzy Posts: 640
    16mm wrote:
    16mm wrote:
    So this is just to change from the thumb shift when going down the cassette?

    It's a lot of faf and $$$ for such a small thing.

    And you'll need to move your hands more when changing on the tops. I can use campag downshift buttons from the tops without moving my hands. With the upgraded shimano you'll need to let go of the tops to change down.

    Back in the day.....downtube shifters .....etc ........


    You can use both shimano shift levers from the tops you know. Unless you mean the back edge, then yes you would have to move.
  • skyblue337skyblue337 Posts: 135
    If you want to upgrade the 105 5700 gear kit from merlin looks good to me for under £190. 10 speed cassettes and chains are not especially expensive to complete the drivetrain:

    http://www.merlincycles.com/bike-shop/road-parts/transmission/gear-sti-ergo-levers/shimano-105-5700-gear-kit-black.html
  • 16mm16mm Posts: 545
    Gozzy wrote:
    16mm wrote:
    16mm wrote:
    So this is just to change from the thumb shift when going down the cassette?

    It's a lot of faf and $$$ for such a small thing.

    And you'll need to move your hands more when changing on the tops. I can use campag downshift buttons from the tops without moving my hands. With the upgraded shimano you'll need to let go of the tops to change down.

    Back in the day.....downtube shifters .....etc ........


    You can use both shimano shift levers from the tops you know. Unless you mean the back edge, then yes you would have to move.

    Tops rather than hoods or drops. Hands by the stem. I can use the downshift paddle from there, and often do.
  • passoutpassout Posts: 4,425
    I'd wait for the Claris - I have 2300 & this is my plan.
    'Happiness serves hardly any other purpose than to make unhappiness possible' Marcel Proust.
  • Graeme JonesGraeme Jones Posts: 361
    I have a Defy 3 2012 with sora with thumb shifters and it first they drove me mad.
    The issues I had was thumb getting rubbed on hoods it took some time to get my position right and this isn't a problem any longer.

    Use on the drops I was of the same mentality that it wasn't ideal but for any decent descents I select the max gear before dropping down its not really goi g to make a huge difference in the grand scheme of things.

    How often do you use the drops? Some say that using the drops aren't as aerodynamic in comparison to the hoods/tops when you make your profile more narrow at the front so don't be fooled that lower is faster.
    I use the drops generally for sprinting and yes it would be preferable to have sti levers but if you get the bar position right and you've not got tiny hands you can use the up shift in the drops.
    I regularly pull 30+ on flat sprints so not doing me too much harm according to strava and my Garmin 500 ;-)
  • johngtijohngti Posts: 2,329
    I've had a defy 4 for a similar length of time and just upgraded it to complete 105 from the shifters down. It's all well and good for folk to say you're better off replacing the whole bike but I'm like you and couldn't afford to do that. The groupset I've got was used but in excellent condition and I say go for it. It took me a day to do the whole lot including the bottom bracket and chainset but its absolutely transformed the bike for me (I'd already swapped the shifters for some microshift ones that I preferred - the thumb button just wasn't for me)

    The merlin cycles deal seems pretty darned good to me; start with those and a new cassette and chain, add the brakes next (105 brakes are so much better in my opinion but you'd probably get the same effect from just changing the shoes and pads). Not sure what difference the hollowtech bb is making but it felt a lot smoother that the square taper. So yeah, ignore the negatives if you have the money for an upgrade and go for it!
  • ianwilliamsianwilliams Posts: 257
    johngti wrote:
    The merlin cycles deal seems pretty darned good to me; start with those and a new cassette and chain, add the brakes next (105 brakes are so much better in my opinion but you'd probably get the same effect from just changing the shoes and pads).

    Hey John, I have a Defy 1 and am thinking about upgrading the brakes. All I see is Defy's with 'deep drop brakes' - and there isn't a 105 deep drop. Did you just use standard 105 brakes, and did you have any problems?

    There is an Ultegra equivalent deep drop brake, but it is only in silver and so spoils the lovely colour coordination of the Defy!

    To the OP - its a great frame. Upgrading all the parts could also be a fun project - a good opportunity to learn a lot about the bike!
  • johngtijohngti Posts: 2,329
    Hi Ian

    Yep, standard 105 brakes - the only thing I had to do was to use the original nuts that were fitted to the generic brakes. I haven't tried fitting the mudguards yet (it's summer!) but there appears to be as much room as the originals had.
  • Thanks for all the replies gents. I know the merlin offer is a good one, but i think it will be a case of picking the various components up over the next little while to spread the cost. I can then maybe go into next summer with the new kit on the bike.
  • AlitogataAlitogata Posts: 148
    Gozzy wrote:
    I'd probably wait for Claris to come out. In the meantime you could keep an eye on ebay for Shimano 600 or RX100 shifters, both have 8 speed dual control levers.

    May I ask something? (there is no reason to open an new thread I think).
    Can someone tell me please if there is an 8 speed groupset that is more functional and ligher than Shimano's 2300? I mean something that is not so entry level like the 8 speed Shimano's groupsets. ( including Claris which seems to be one of the same with 2300).
    I have such a groupset and I don't feel the need to go for 9 or ten speeds, but then the 8 speed groupsets isn't so well made and light like the 9-10-11 speed groupsets.
    Is there any alternative? ( for road bike).
  • chillingchilling Posts: 267
    R650 are the Shimano deep drop brakes. Very stoppy.
  • Lycra-BykaLycra-Byka Posts: 292
    Defy 3 for me.

    I changed the std brake calipers to 105 versions(guess it wasn't just me who thought the originals were awful?)
    Waste of money, made no major difference. If budget is an issue, just change to some koolstop green pads. For £15 it transformed the stopping power more than new cables and 105 calipers did together.
    By far the best upgrade for the defy range is the wheels btw, I learnt to live with the thumb shifter, whilst unusable in the drops it doesn't bother me anymore.(sora 9 speed btw)
  • johngtijohngti Posts: 2,329
    Alitogata wrote:
    Gozzy wrote:
    I'd probably wait for Claris to come out. In the meantime you could keep an eye on ebay for Shimano 600 or RX100 shifters, both have 8 speed dual control levers.

    May I ask something? (there is no reason to open an new thread I think).
    Can someone tell me please if there is an 8 speed groupset that is more functional and ligher than Shimano's 2300? I mean something that is not so entry level like the 8 speed Shimano's groupsets. ( including Claris which seems to be one of the same with 2300).
    I have such a groupset and I don't feel the need to go for 9 or ten speeds, but then the 8 speed groupsets isn't so well made and light like the 9-10-11 speed groupsets.
    Is there any alternative? ( for road bike).

    I think microshift is worth a look - its certainly lighter than the equivalent shimano stuff and it worked well for me.
  • cescocesco Posts: 252
    I have a Defy 3, with Sora. I have no issues whatsoever with the thumbshifts, or the braking. I must say that front mech shifting can be a bit tricky, but o well. If there's any complaint from my side, it's that there are too many gears haha. Coming from a 12-speed bike, sometimes it's hard to pick the right one, or even feel the difference for that matter.

    As I never use the third ring, plus think it looks kind of ridic, changing that and the shifter will probably be my first upgrade.
  • AlitogataAlitogata Posts: 148
    johngti wrote:
    Alitogata wrote:
    Gozzy wrote:
    I'd probably wait for Claris to come out. In the meantime you could keep an eye on ebay for Shimano 600 or RX100 shifters, both have 8 speed dual control levers.

    May I ask something? (there is no reason to open an new thread I think).
    Can someone tell me please if there is an 8 speed groupset that is more functional and ligher than Shimano's 2300? I mean something that is not so entry level like the 8 speed Shimano's groupsets. ( including Claris which seems to be one of the same with 2300).
    I have such a groupset and I don't feel the need to go for 9 or ten speeds, but then the 8 speed groupsets isn't so well made and light like the 9-10-11 speed groupsets.
    Is there any alternative? ( for road bike).

    I think microshift is worth a look - its certainly lighter than the equivalent shimano stuff and it worked well for me.

    Thanks for the suggestion. I just google them and I find them very interesting and in a very good price.
    But again, I don't get why the 7 or 8 speed groupsets aren't same sophisticated like the 9-10-11sp. Perhaps some people don't want or don't bother to have more speeds. I personally I'm not even interested, because I used to ride single and triple speed bikes for two decades and I recently turn to classic road bikes, ( because I'm getting older.. :lol::lol: ).
    So 16 speeds are more than enough in my case.. why having more weight on my bike with a bigger cassette after all? 16 speeds are fine for me and it would be better if there were 16 of a very high quality, not the censored that usually are this kind of groupsets.. ( they call it entry level now.. :roll: :P :D )
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