Shimano Ultegra 6800 Front Derailleur - Road Bike Shop
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Shimano Ultegra 6800 Front Derailleur
Retail Price: $59.95buy now
Our Price: $44.99
Our Price: $44.99
By mirroring the design of Dura-Ace 9000's mechanical front derailleur, Shimano's revamped Ultegra 6800 front mechanism now provides that same smooth and accurate shifting that has made Shimano's marquee group so revered. It's a welcome upgrade from the previous version of Ultegra, as the longer pull arm and revised actuation ratio deliver precise shifting, with much less effort. Shortly after the well-received introduction of its Di2 front derailleur, Shimano knew it needed to make some big revisions to the design of its FD-9000, which have now found their way to the new Ultegra 6800 mech. To start, we should explain Ultegra 6800's shifting goal -- easier action with a shorter stroke at the lever. To achieve this, a multi-part strategy had to be developed. First, Shimano had to revise the actuation ratio -- easier said than done. By standard, Shimano has operated on a variable ratio. This means that the ratio between a unit of shifted cable and its measured movement of a derailleur is varied throughout the gear range. As Shimano sees it, every gear jump is different, and requires a variance in actuation. However, to minimize the stroke effort, the variable ratio had to be lessened. This required a replacement of the leverage points on the front derailleur's body. You'll notice that FD-6800 borrows from Dura-Ace heavily here, as it now has a heightened profile with the leverage point at the top of the body. The enlarged pull arm creates more leverage, and this strengthens the pull, eases the actuation, and thus lessens the shift stroke. Shimano claims that the new derailleur system creates a 35% reduction in shifting effort over 6700 at the lever. And to round things off in the efficiency department, the FD-6800 is pulled by Shimano's proprietary, polymer-coated shift cable. Shimano's new cable nearly eliminates mechanical drag, and further enhances shift accuracy. Altogether, the minimization of stroke and required effort creates a shifting experience on-par...