Anyone got any experience with bottom of the barrel STI?

Thanks to tarck for your answers to my earlier question re a bike for my little sister. I have another one: the bike we’re looking at comes with an STI triple brifter setup that is not even in the Shimano hierarchy, i.e. it’s a step below Sora. Does anyone know for sure whether they are complete pieces of shit? I’m pretty sure they are but ya never know, if they have a few years of reliable light commuting use in them, they might be acceptable. Instead of using them i might see whether the shop owner could throw in a bro-deal on some Silver barcons and those Tektro levers for people with little hands. If you shop guys especially have any input on what customers are returning with to claim warranties or whatever, that’d be much appreciated.

They will work just fine for a while. It’s been my experience working on crappy road bikes that when poor shifting happens its usually related to the lack of quality in the derailleurs first. I have resurrected many a sora/2200 bike that has non-functional shifting with new cables/housing and sometimes a new derailleur. Will it work as well as 105 or Ultegra? No. Will it work. Yes.

It will require more upkeep and adjustment which is why I don’t sell bikes with those parts because the person who buys a sub-1000 road bike seems less inclined to care for it and it will probably go to shit.

I found the 2200 front derailleur particularly hard to set up for triple. They’re very low quality. It really makes you appreciate the engineering in a simple Tiagra or 105 front derailleur. I definitely bent and re-shaped some cages to make them work. No idea on longevity.

I would take bar end shifters over 2200.

I had a 2004 Nishiki Century with Sora, it was really a pain in the ass trying to make the triple work. I can’t imagine the cheaper stuff being any more fun.

Come to think of it, I can never get my Dura Ace/Ultegra 1x9 to hold an indexing anyways. Maybe I just teh suck.

Thanks again to all for your input! I could never get my own DA barcon’d/ XT derailer’d setup to hold indexing either, but i’m pretty sure it’s because the cables are really old and cheesy and i dont care enough/ am too lazy to change them.

It will require more upkeep and adjustment which is why I don’t sell bikes with those parts because the person who buys a sub-1000 road bike seems less inclined to care for it and it will probably go to shit.[/quote]

Yep it’d be hard to train my sis to adjust shifters, change cables etc but she can already run a friction shifter.

I kinda thought this would be the way to go. Friction shifting will hopefully clean up the rest of the shittiness in the shifting system.

I have a pair of the Silver bar end shifters and think very highly of them. They are kind of a nice middle ground between friction and indexed. They will also greatly simplify any upgrading she wants to do a great deal. They will work with just about anything without much bike smarts needed.

Dumb questions - Is Silver a brand name? Never heard of it.

The Sora triple on wife bike was enough of a PITA to set up. After hearing the horror stories, I can’t even imagine how frustrating the 2200 stuff would be.

Model name of a Dia Compe shifter (bar end or down tube). They are a copy of a Suntour design.

Ah. Thanks.

i don’t know why so many people have problems with sora brifters. i have set mine up 3 or 4 separate times between different bikes and probably have over 8k miles on them by now.

but it seems like bar end would be better in your case if you don’t have to spend too much.

The rear was totally fine. I just had a lot of trouble setting up the triple in front. It still isn’t perfect, but it works well enough.

My tiagara shifters work fine. One is a triple as well

Tiagra is good stuff. Sora is not all that bad really. The problem is that the OP was about 2200.

I’ve used Shimano RSX shifters before. The shifting was not nearly as smooth as 105 or Ultegra, but they worked okay.

Yup. I’m actually going to reinstall my RSX group sometime in the near future.