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Thread: Questions about Campy shifters

  1. #1
    suhacycles is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Questions about Campy shifters

    Thinking about getting Campy shifters for cross... just wondering about people's experiences with the latest Athena, Centaur and Veloce models. Are the internals interchangeable? Does the thumb shifter get in the way when wearing thick gloves? Durability? Stuff like that...

    Thanks,
    HS

  2. #2
    roseyscot is offline 2KClub
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    i've been riding nothing but campy for nearly 8 years now, including for cx. i have a few bikes with new generation hoods, though none with the powershi(f)t. i've never found them to be a problem, nor had issues with thick gloves. i commute through the winter, often wearing lobster claw type gloves, again, no issues.

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    ldamelio's Avatar
    ldamelio is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Centaur 10 for cross since 2007 on one bike. Even that, widely acknowledged to be crappiest modern Campagnolo, has been flawless. Current Centaur stuff much better. I also put well used (50,000 road miles) and well loved 2000 Chorus on another cross bike for this season. Easy to shift even with thick gloves. Zero problems, wouldn't hesitate.

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    fixednwinter is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Using 2011 Centaur on a road bike that can fit 27mm tires. So it's not a cross bike but I do use it on rough surfaces.

    No issues, shifts reliably. Unlike Record or Chorus the thumb shifters on Centaur can only go down one ring/cog at a time, but it shifts quickly so it's not a disadvantage. The current hood shape is much more comfortable than the previous version.

    Gloved operation is not a hassle. The firm clicks are easy to detect through gloves

  5. #5
    blasdelf is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    It's complicated, because they introduced a shitty version of the mechanism in the years before 11 speed came out, and then waffled back and forth on the practice.

    The low-end models with gimped internals (formerly "Escape", now "Powershift") are functional, but there's a reason internet pricing on them is $100 lower.

    It's not really a deal: there's no trim on the FD, you can only shift one cog at a time, and there's no spare parts. I don't entirely blame them for doing it since they've gotta be way cheaper to make, but at the cost of giving up all the features that make Campy worth buying.


    A buyer's guide:

    Everything Chorus and up is safely UltraShift with the nice FD trim and the ability to dump through cogs.

    In 2007 and 2008 (the "QS" years), the groups below Chorus were "QS Escape", so avoid lower-end ones that have QS on the front of the left lever body.

    For 2009 and 2010 when the new hood shape came out, all the new ones both 11s and 10s were Ultra-Shift again across the board.

    Then starting in 2011 they reintroduced Escape as Powershift on everything below Chorus. You can tell the difference by the font/style of the group name on the front of the lever blade, which changed at the same time.


    One caveat: the action of the Escape/Powershift levers is significantly lighter, and some people prefer that over the features of UltraShift.

  6. #6
    drietz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by blasdelf View Post
    It's complicated, because they introduced a shitty version of the mechanism in the years before 11 speed came out, and then waffled back and forth on the practice.

    The low-end models with gimped internals (formerly "Escape", now "Powershift") are functional, but there's a reason internet pricing on them is $100 lower.

    It's not really a deal: there's no trim on the FD, you can only shift one cog at a time, and there's no spare parts. I don't entirely blame them for doing it since they've gotta be way cheaper to make, but at the cost of giving up all the features that make Campy worth buying.


    A buyer's guide:

    Everything Chorus and up is safely UltraShift with the nice FD trim and the ability to dump through cogs.

    In 2007 and 2008 (the "QS" years), the groups below Chorus were "QS Escape", so avoid lower-end ones that have QS on the front of the left lever body.

    For 2009 and 2010 when the new hood shape came out, all the new ones both 11s and 10s were Ultra-Shift again across the board.

    Then starting in 2011 they reintroduced Escape as Powershift on everything below Chorus. You can tell the difference by the font/style of the group name on the front of the lever blade, which changed at the same time.


    One caveat: the action of the Escape/Powershift levers is significantly lighter, and some people prefer that over the features of UltraShift.
    This really is a great summary. I couldn't have put it better myself.

    Currently running a set of Record shifters that have been in my possession for oh, five years now. Rebuilt the right one once just because I wanted it all crisp again, but after 30,000miles, that's really not a big deal.

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    suhacycles is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Thanks for the summary and input fellas. Sounds like I'll have to go Chorus to get the multiple shifts at a time and FD trim. Would a Chorus front shifter work with a top pull Shimano CX70 FD though?

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    drietz's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by suhacycles View Post
    Thanks for the summary and input fellas. Sounds like I'll have to go Chorus to get the multiple shifts at a time and FD trim. Would a Chorus front shifter work with a top pull Shimano CX70 FD though?
    Yes, without a doubt.

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    roseyscot is offline 2KClub
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by suhacycles View Post
    Thanks for the summary and input fellas. Sounds like I'll have to go Chorus to get the multiple shifts at a time and FD trim. Would a Chorus front shifter work with a top pull Shimano CX70 FD though?
    i'm using 2010 Centaur with a Shimano CX70 front derailleur. It works, but I find the cable pull to be a bit stiffer/tougher (not in a good way) than with the Campy front derailleurs on my other bikes. I'm using genuine Campy cables, so I don't think that is the issue. It's not unbearable, and in the middle of cx race, I really don't notice it, but on a 90+ minute trail ride, I start to notice it.

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    Peter Chong is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    I have Athena 11. The FD does trim. Dropping the RD one cog at a time is ok, as mentioned, it shifts fast, and I can drop 2 or 3 cogs quite quickly.

  11. #11
    darkmother is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    I've got 2011 Centaur (Powershift) levers on my road bike. They replaced old style Chorus levers because I dig the new lever shape. Initially, I thought I would miss the shift style of the old levers with their multiple downshift ability, but in practice, I don't. The new levers actually shift faster, especially the front. I've set up the FD so I have the trim click locked out.

  12. #12
    fixednwinter is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by darkmother View Post
    I've got 2011 Centaur (Powershift) levers on my road bike. They replaced old style Chorus levers because I dig the new lever shape. Initially, I thought I would miss the shift style of the old levers with their multiple downshift ability, but in practice, I don't.
    Agreed. I switch between the 2011 Centaur, 2008 Chorus and 2012 Record continually. Although I like the ability to do multi-steps on the Chorus and Record, I'm fine with the single shift going down the cogs on the Centaur too. Fast & reliable.

    Of course, the ultimate in multiple cogs shifting, both up and down, in a single stroke, is with either 10sp Campag Bar-Control shifters or down tube shifters converted to 10sp. But only fringe wackos like myself and thollandpe use that set-up!

  13. #13
    fixednwinter is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by roseyscot View Post
    i'm using 2010 Centaur with a Shimano CX70 front derailleur. It works, but I find the cable pull to be a bit stiffer/tougher (not in a good way) than with the Campy front derailleurs on my other bikes. I'm using genuine Campy cables, so I don't think that is the issue.
    For a while, I also did a mix - 2011 Centaur with a SRAM Force FD, using actual Campag cables too. I experienced the same thing - cable pull was quite stiff. It was workable, although it wasn't optimal. Eventually, I did get a Centaur FD to match. Much easier cable pull now.

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    roseyscot is offline 2KClub
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by fixednwinter View Post
    For a while, I also did a mix - 2011 Centaur with a SRAM Force FD, using actual Campag cables too. I experienced the same thing - cable pull was quite stiff. It was workable, although it wasn't optimal. Eventually, I did get a Centaur FD to match. Much easier cable pull now.
    the benefit to the cx70 with the campy shifters is when using a 36-46 cx crankset (like the cx70 cranks), the contour of the derailleur helps ensure quick engagement with the chainrings when shifting and better security against dropped chains (i've had none).

  15. #15
    suhacycles is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Hmm, ok, well if I decide to skip the CX70 derailleur and get 11 spd Chorus shifters, no problem using a Centaur FD?

    Just want to clarify, so Powershift shifter parts can't be overhauled?

  16. #16
    Delicious is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    If you have TT cable routing for the FD, I would definitely go with the Shimano CX70 top pull front derailleur. It is the best CX specific piece of equipment I've bought in a while and this is coming from somebody who has Campy on every bike in the family stable. I haven't noticed the CX70 to be too stiff. If anything it's easier to actuate since it eliminates the dreaded cable pulley and the drag associated with it when it's caked with mud and grass. And like roseyscot says, the contour matches CX chainrings nicely which helps eliminate dropped chains.

  17. #17
    suhacycles is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Makes me wonder, is the stiffness associated with the CX70 FD due to the top pull design or is it equally stiff in the down pull version?

  18. #18
    Erik B's Avatar
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    My 2 cents follow.
    Don't go to 11 for a cross bike.
    There are NOS chorus and record 10 shifters available is you want the ability to dump and like the old hood shape.
    (lickbike has some of these)
    If you want the new hood shape, totalcycling seems to have some of the 2010 ultrashift veloce 10 speed shifters available.
    As far as I'm concerned these are the best of the breed as they are aluminum, maintain the full on thumb dump and best of all are incredibly cheap.
    I snatched up a couple when excel blew them out a couple years ago and total seems to have even better pricing.

    Here's why I didn't go to eleven. 10 speed campy and shimano cog spacing is close enough that I can run either with a medium cage RD and have no effect on shifting that I am able to discern. For me the fact that shimano MTN also goes to ten now is just an added bonus, because I like/need a giagantic bailout gear for the terrain I regularly ride, so I in fact have one wheelset built up as with 11-34 shimano mtn cassette.

    Drive train as follows 2010 Veloce shifters, centaur FD, veloce medium cage RD, veloce UT crank with 39/46 rings, 13-29 or 11-34 wheelsets, bb5's so far it all works seemlessly at my level of abilty to bitch about shit not working quite right.
    I dropped the chain once on a flyover with this configuration which means I should probably add a chainkeeper of some sort.


    my cross bike has both disc brakes and bottle bosses so take my 2 cents for what is worth
    Last edited by Erik B; 11-13-2012 at 03:37 PM. Reason: added some info
    Erik Brunner

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    suhacycles is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by Erik B View Post
    My 2 cents follow.
    Don't go to 11 for a cross bike.
    [/I]
    Actually, I was thinking of using the 11 spd shifters with a 9 speed Shimano cassette+RD setup, ie Shimergo. Worst case, I end up getting a Shiftmate if the shifting isn't very smooth. Thanks for the tip on the Veloce levers... didn't know they offered those in Ultrashift too...

  20. #20
    suhacycles is offline VSalonistas
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    Default Re: Questions about Campy shifters

    Quote Originally Posted by Erik B View Post
    If you want the new hood shape, totalcycling seems to have some of the 2010 ultrashift veloce 10 speed shifters available.
    As far as I'm concerned these are the best of the breed as they are aluminum, maintain the full on thumb dump and best of all are incredibly cheap.
    I snatched up a couple when excel blew them out a couple years ago and total seems to have even better pricing.
    Is this what you're referring to?

    Campagnolo Veloce Ultra-Shift Ergo Levers - Black: Total Cycling

    Confirm, these allow down 3/up 5 shifting?

    Thanks,
    HS

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