Jump to content
AustinBike

SRAM 12-speed Derailleur Choices

Recommended Posts

Running a SRAM 12-speed drive train on the squish right now, GX shifter and X01 gold derailleur. Based on how the world of supply chains are these days, I was thinking about getting a spare derailleur to put on the shelf for the inevitable break.

Looks like the X01 is pretty pricey and they seem to be pushing their market towards the GX and NX at this point. 

Any insights on the differences between GX and NX? Is it mostly weight? Or is it worth spending almost 2X to get an X01?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Avoid the NX, if you want to save money but still have good shifting go with GX. Differences between GX and the upper tiers are limited to materials for weight savings.

the NX doesn’t have the rigidity in the parallelogram the GX and above has which reflects in the quality of the shifting. But if you only want it as a temporary back up, then it might be fine enough.

and always remember, the derailer is the slave, the shifter is the master. Put your money in the shifter and you won’t regret it. 

Edited by Teamsloan
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 minutes ago, Teamsloan said:

and always remember, the derailer is the slave, the shifter is the master. Put your money in the shifter and you won’t regret it. 

Was going to suggest the same. Read several long term reviews where they said GX der and XO1 shifter was just as smooth as all XO1. And shifters are cheaper to upgrade! My GX has been more trouble free than my last XT drivetrain. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'd agree with the above posts but also add that my bike came with an NX drivetrain. At the time I thought I'd ride it until it broke and upgrade. Almost 2 years later it's still going strong. Shifting is crisp, but I will agree with the above statement that the NX doesn't have the rigidity and solid feel of the GX.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

OK, sounds like a GX is the way to go. This is where I was heading, I assumed that the NX would have some kind of compromise and for another $20, why not get the better of the 2. GX is on the shifter so that is already covered. Needed to buy a new 32T RaceFace so I'll pick this up at the same time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Definitely the GX, 52t version. All the rest are marginal improvements mainly focused on weight savings. They will also hurt that much more when you tear off a $250-300 derailleur currently made of unobtainium.

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, ATXZJ said:

Definitely the GX, 52t version. All the rest are marginal improvements mainly focused on weight savings. They will also hurt that much more when you tear off a $250-300 derailleur currently made of unobtainium.

 

My old XX had its internal spring fail (not the external one and they make no spares.  I was shocked at the prices even then.  Luckily a friend had a broken XX I got the spring from. 

I am hoping the right-to-repair movement does something for us in the cycling community.  It seems ridiculous to throw away 100% of an expensive component that took a lot of resources to make and ship, for a part that comprises 1% of it.  I'm especially thinking of Shimano and SRAM...I can get a caliper or drum brake rebuild kit for a 1950 Chevy C3100 but I can't do the same for a 2021 bike?

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, AntonioGG said:

I am hoping the right-to-repair movement does something for us in the cycling community.  It seems ridiculous to throw away 100% of an expensive component that took a lot of resources to make and ship, for a part that comprises 1% of it.  I'm especially thinking of Shimano and SRAM...I can get a caliper or drum brake rebuild kit for a 1950 Chevy C3100 but I can't do the same for a 2021 bike?

this indeed. I was trying to refresh some Shimano hydraulic brakes and someone at Shimano told me "you can't disassemble that lever unit, or the caliper." I read that while looking down at my completely disassembled lever and calipers, hoping I could replace the worn out seals. their advice was to throw them all in the trash and buy a new system. I was able to reassemble this brake set, but the rubber bits were not available.

image.png.94c0472c22ce3d01cf423d27d044970e.png

Edited by mack_turtle
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Shimano said humans couldn't take apart and reassemble Ultegra shifters.  I took my front shifter apart, and it was a pain, but I put it back together and documented it all.  Someone else in Australia had done the rear shifter.  We linked to each other's pages and got lots of hits.

As far as as replacement parts, my dream is we don't even need to ship parts.  Get a local 3D printer, buy the file and get it locally made.  I'm fine with security measures such that the file can only be used once or whatever.

I wonder if this company can make the seals?

https://www.rapidmade.com/3d-printed-rubber-products

Edited by AntonioGG
type
  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, AntonioGG said:

Shimano said humans couldn't take apart and reassemble Ultegra shifters.  I took my front shifter apart, and it was a pain, but I put it back together and documented it all. 

 

Thats only because you are not human.  After dissembling a few of those (for fun) back in the early days while working at a shop, I would tend to agree with Shimano.

 

When NX first came out I installed a complete drivetrain for one of the local neighborhood kids who had saved all his summer lawn money for the upgrade.  I got it on there and working very adequately.  But I was not impressed with the fit & finish of the components.  I personally would avoid them.  So much so, that when I needed a drivetrain for my back-up bike, I ended up purchasing the new Shimano 12spd Deore and have been mightily pleased.  YMMV

Cheers,
CJB

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, CBaron said:

Thats only because you are not human.  After dissembling a few of those (for fun) back in the early days while working at a shop, I would tend to agree with Shimano.

 I ended up purchasing the new Shimano 12spd Deore and have been mightily pleased.  YMMV

 

Totally agree. Budget Shimano 12spd is WAY better than SRAM. The upper end stuff from SRAM is better,  but that's just my crap 2c

 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, CBaron said:

Thats only because you are not human.  After dissembling a few of those (for fun) back in the early days while working at a shop, I would tend to agree with Shimano.

The hard part was needing a special "tool" to put the spring in and which Shimano actually sells.  I have a small lathe so I made myself one, but one of those spring pins would have worked fine.  I searched for this online and now there are videos of it on YouTube, but it's cool to see how many forums still have a (now dead, don't click it who knows what lurks there) link to my page http://www.nitrodyno.com/Ultegra-STI/.  By far it had the most traffic of any of my stuff.  I can't find the OZ guy's page either.  I still have the whole page archived somewhere in one of my old drives.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

18 hours ago, AntonioGG said:

I am hoping the right-to-repair movement does something for us in the cycling community.  It seems ridiculous to throw away 100% of an expensive component that took a lot of resources to make and ship, for a part that comprises 1% of it.  

The real issue is volume and supply chain. It's not that they don't want you to fix things. Actually, being able to add "user repairable" would be a nice marketing bullet for them. The issue is that the "right to repair" works well when you have something like a phone that is shipped in the millions and is really expensive. 

When you ship products in the millions you will actually build a service stock of spare parts, even those little springs, and you have enough that it makes selling them profitable. You'd rather have your customer fix their broken thing then get pissed about it and swear off your brand forever. But stockpiling all of those parts is expensive, and handling orders for a single $.03 spring is crazy expensive. You can generally assume that typical handling cost on an order is ~$20 (fully burdened) if you are an efficient company like Dell and probably north of $35 for a less efficient company. 

When you are shipping $65 phone screens that you buy for $27 on the market, you can figure out how to absorb the costs in your business for this. But when you are talking about a $150 item with 50-60 parts in it, you're facing a daunting task of maintaining a stock (which costs money), handling parts (which costs money) and dealing with support for repairs (which costs money).

For some products it makes sense. I've fixed a bunch of things on my $1200 Samsung fridge. Every part was wildly expensive but not because they wanted to screw me, it was expensive because they need to maintain a stock, handle all the parts, and deal with the customers.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

6 hours ago, AustinBike said:

The real issue is volume and supply chain. It's not that they don't want you to fix things. Actually, being able to add "user repairable" would be a nice marketing bullet for them. The issue is that the "right to repair" works well when you have something like a phone that is shipped in the millions and is really expensive. 

When you ship products in the millions you will actually build a service stock of spare parts, even those little springs, and you have enough that it makes selling them profitable. You'd rather have your customer fix their broken thing then get pissed about it and swear off your brand forever. But stockpiling all of those parts is expensive, and handling orders for a single $.03 spring is crazy expensive. You can generally assume that typical handling cost on an order is ~$20 (fully burdened) if you are an efficient company like Dell and probably north of $35 for a less efficient company. 

When you are shipping $65 phone screens that you buy for $27 on the market, you can figure out how to absorb the costs in your business for this. But when you are talking about a $150 item with 50-60 parts in it, you're facing a daunting task of maintaining a stock (which costs money), handling parts (which costs money) and dealing with support for repairs (which costs money).

For some products it makes sense. I've fixed a bunch of things on my $1200 Samsung fridge. Every part was wildly expensive but not because they wanted to screw me, it was expensive because they need to maintain a stock, handle all the parts, and deal with the customers.

 

Good points and why I mentioned I think the end game is for a lot of parts (not so complex like chips and something like a spring) to be 3D printed locally.

One of the big obstacles of right to repair for electronics is that there are a lot of measures built into them to prevent things like man in the middle attacks or hacking without you being aware, as well as stuff to make sure this is a thing made by you, and not copied by someone else.  Those IMO are legitimate reasons to have that kind of security built-in and will make local/home repair very difficult or impossible for certain things.

Hey, do you want some Samsung temp sensors?  We had a super fancy expensive Samsung with the extra doors and drawers and what not.  I had to change sensors on it 3x, and the ice-maker would constantly get frozen over (bad design, not sealing the compartment, etc.).  At 18 months we got rid of it and got a much simpler LG and we've been happy with it so far.  Samsung used to be super reliable but it seems like lately their stuff is not so great.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

17 hours ago, AntonioGG said:

Samsung used to be super reliable but it seems like lately their stuff is not so great.

we like to shop refrigerators in stores because we know we'll need to replace ours eventually. basically, everything that Samsung makes that involves water seems to suck, so we avoid those. I know a few people who have had to ditch Samsung laundry machines. I went to ReStore in search of some windows (came up empty) and they had dozens of what appeared to be brand-new Samsung refrigerators. TVs and phones seem to be solid though.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A big part might be reusability. It is far easier for a company to have parts available if they reuse parts in their design, generation after generation. Same thing with cars. 

Product costs are tied to design, tooling, volume, carrying costs, incidence of service failure, and reusability across generations. Everyone seems to think that materials cost is the big driver,  but in reality it is a smaller part of the process. When TI parts cost more it generally has less to do with the difference between TI and the others, or even fabrication (with the possible exception of frames...) It generally has more to do with the carrying cost and the smaller volume. Imagine you are Shimano and you make Deore, SX, XT and XTR. You use the same parts across all of them, but for XTR you use a titanium part instead of steel to cut down on weight. The fact that XTR is lower volume has a huge cost on the fully burdened part cost, the material is probably only pennies in difference.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, mack_turtle said:

why is it that I can source small parts for several generations of Campagnolo, but the two S'es can't do that?

I don't think the newer Campy stuff is as serviceable as the older stuff was. I've rebuilt Campy shifters many times. The other great thing about the older Campy shifters is that you can change how many gears you want just by changing out the carrier gear. 

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 1/21/2022 at 1:43 PM, mack_turtle said:

Shimano told me "you can't disassemble that lever unit, or the caliper."

For brakes, I bet this is more of a liability issue. Even automotive repair places are doing this. Many won't service a caliper, they will just replace it with a rebuilt unit that has a 3rd party guarantee on it. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

15 minutes ago, RedRider3141 said:

For brakes, I bet this is more of a liability issue. 

Possible, but I can buy pistons and seals to rebuild SRAM brake systems. Maybe there's something I don't know, but it seems like Shimano is comfortable with creating more waste and selling more brakes. If I didn't know any better, I'd use SRAM brakes for this reason, except I hate brakes that have to be flushed and bled every few weeks and make constant turkey gobble noises. Working in a bike shop turned me off to SRAM in general.

Edited by mack_turtle
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 minutes ago, mack_turtle said:

but it seems like Shimano is comfortable with creating more waste and selling more brakes. 

Or it just isn't economically feasible. Don't automatically ascribe the worst on a company without knowing the real motivation. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 1/21/2022 at 5:32 PM, ATXZJ said:

Totally agree. Budget Shimano 12spd is WAY better than SRAM. The upper end stuff from SRAM is better,  but that's just my crap 2c

 

Since it's time to replace my SRAM 11-speed cassette, I'm once again considering drivetrain options. One thing I'm trying to factor in is the useful life of derailleurs and shifters. I'm sure there are many variables, but I've been using the same XX1 setup since 2016. The clutch failed once after a year or so, and SRAM replaced the derailleur under warranty. Everything has worked flawlessly since then. A shop guy told me that once you get past 3-4 years of heavy use on a derailleur, you've gotten your money's worth. If that is true, then I'm running on borrowed time. What's been your experience with useful life on shifters / derailleurs?

In terms of options for upgrading to 12-spd, I'm seeing a lot of good reviews on the XT 12-spd setup (mechanical). Anybody had experience with both SRAM and Shimano 12-spd? I rode a buddy's GX AXS 12-spd and honestly wasn't that impressed. To me there was an ever-so-slight delay between pushing the button and getting a shift, whereas on my XX1, the shifting is instantaneous and incredibly smooth. I haven't completely ruled out wireless shifting, but based on my one experience, I'm not sold. In fairness, I've only tried it on pavement.  

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Man, if I had 11 speed I'd stick with that. 12, for riding around here, is overkill. The 50T that I have is hardly ever used, I spin too much. In the process of replacing my front ring with a 32T (long story on why it is not done yet) and I am thinking that in the future I might consider a 34T for the front because the 50T is kinda worthless for me. A 34T up front might change that dynamic. Ultimately 11sp would have been a better choice but the bike came with 12.

Shifters seem to last forever for me, I chew through derailleurs about ever 18 - 24 months, go through cassettes about every 24 - 36 months. But shifters never wear out for me. If I replace them it is because I misjudged a tree gap.

I had a friend that went wireless. She loved it. Then one day she forgot that she was charging the battery and ended up with a singlespeed and could not get it into the optimal range (I am sure you can...) I'm an old guy, I'll stick with cables, I don't trust technology that much (as a tech person).

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

25 minutes ago, AustinBike said:

Man, if I had 11 speed I'd stick with that. 12, for riding around here, is overkill. The 50T that I have is hardly ever used, I spin too much. In the process of replacing my front ring with a 32T (long story on why it is not done yet) and I am thinking that in the future I might consider a 34T for the front because the 50T is kinda worthless for me. A 34T up front might change that dynamic. Ultimately 11sp would have been a better choice but the bike came with 12.

Shifters seem to last forever for me, I chew through derailleurs about ever 18 - 24 months, go through cassettes about every 24 - 36 months. But shifters never wear out for me. If I replace them it is because I misjudged a tree gap.

I had a friend that went wireless. She loved it. Then one day she forgot that she was charging the battery and ended up with a singlespeed and could not get it into the optimal range (I am sure you can...) I'm an old guy, I'll stick with cables, I don't trust technology that much (as a tech person).

Yeah I hardly ever use my lowest gear around here even on my 11-spd. However, I'm planning at least 2 trips per year to destinations that require much more climbing. That is why I'm considering options. Colorado kicked my ass last year on the 11-spd!   

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.



  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...