Calfee’s Getting New Shifters & Rear Derailleur…

After giving it some thought — and despite my long-standing love affair with Campagnolo’s Ergo shifter design — I’ve gone ahead and ordered up a set of Shimano Ultegra ST-6703 STI shifters and an RD-6700-GS-G long-cage rear derailleur to replace the hybrid system on our Calfee.

So, the Campy Ultra 10 Record shifters and the SRAM X.0 rear derailleur will be going into the parts box and will likely see use on something else at some point.

campagnolo-2008-record-ergopower-shifters-10-speed 2010 SRAM X.0

In their stead will be the older spec, 10 speed Ultegra shifters & rear derailleur that are pretty much what Co-Motion specs on their full performance tandem line.


No, it’s not sexy but it should work well right out of the box and I’ll just learn to adapt to the different shifting.  In fact, our triplet has the very rare Dura Ace 7703s triple shifters which have the same basic ergonomic function as the 6703’s, and I’ve been able to adapt to and use those without too much trouble.

They won’t arrive in time to go on the Calfee for STR; however, they’ll be a welcome addition for our fall and winter rides.  I’ve also ordered up some new cables and housings so that everything in the shifting path will be fresh, as will the brake cables and housing.

Shimano 6800 brake largeDagnabit, I also need to rethink my brakes!  Campy uses a release button in the brake lever / shifter housing to “open” the brake calipers whereas Shimano uses a cam lever on the caliper.  If I don’t change at least the front brake then I’ll be hard pressed to remove the front wheel while still maintaining proper brake lever feel and purchase.  Hmmm, back to fleabay I guess.


About TG

I've been around a bit and done a few things, have a couple kids and a few grandkids. I tend to be curmudgeonly, matter-of-fact and not predisposed to self-serving chit-chat. Thankfully, my wife's as nice as can be otherwise we'd have no friends. My interests are somewhat eclectic, but whose aren't?
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4 Responses to Calfee’s Getting New Shifters & Rear Derailleur…

  1. Dave Mansfield says:

    I have two bikes (tandem & triplet) with Campy 10 speed shifters and Ultegra rear derailleur using a Jtec ShiftMate. The shifting is great it’s better than when I tried Campy shifters with a SRAM derailleur and as good any bike I’ve ever had with full Shimano or Campy.This gives me Campy shifting and brake release and the cassette selection of Shimano and SRAM.

    • TG says:

      Good to hear you’ve found a sweet spot.
      – We’ve used the Jteks with Campy RD + Campy Ergo + Shimano Cassette and they worked well ‘most of the time’ but the Campy RD’s cage just wasn’t long enough for a 32t rear cog: cog & idler wheel would contact even with the B-screw adjusted to the max.
      – JTek with SRAM X.0 9spd also worked pretty well, but the Jtek would occasionally need to be re-set.
      – Thought we had the hot-ticket with the newer SRAM X.0 10spd and no Jtek. It worked well for quite a while, but of late it’s gotten sloppy. Frankly, it’s probably the 8-year old Campy shifters with a 4-year old G-spring that needs to be replaced along with a derailleur cable / housing re-fresh. So, the smart play would have been to rebuild the right hand Campy shifter… and it will still be an option down the road.
      – I suspect I’ve just gotten to the point where I want to change things up on the Calfee and also see how life with a Shimano drive train might be like on the tandem, as it’s been “pretty good” on the triplet. In other words, I’ve grown restless and needed to change something, lest I start thinking about a complete tandem upgrade!

  2. Chris says:

    I just wondered how it went with the 6703 shifters? I have a tandem and I am looking to make it 10 speed if I can using the ultegra rear and a triple front. I’ve read lots of reports of issues with the ultegra shifter (left) and might consider the 105 as I have that combination on my bike and it works well. I would love to hear how it went and any issues.

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