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How To Convert Your 10-Speed Transmission To 11

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1/25/2016 11:25 AM
Edited Date/Time: 1/25/2016 12:09 PM

If you're like many riders out there, you love the idea of wide-range, 1x11-speed drivetrain simplicity, but you're less in love with the idea of having to replace every single part of your existing transmission to get there. Well, thanks to South African company Rapide, there's a hack: their 11-speed SRAM Shifter Converter replaces the indexed gear selector inside your existing 10-speed shifter, in a procedure that the company claims takes no more than 15 to 20 minutes. All you then need to replace is the cassette, the chain, and probably your chainring, and you have a fully functional 11-speed drivetrain. In theory, depending on which derailleur you start out with, there should be enough range in the derailleur to cover at least a 10-42 cassette (XD driver-equipped hub required for that of course). You would forego one of the major advantages of SRAM's 11-speed derailleurs, the X-Actuation movement, but if you're looking for budget bodges you can't be too fussy.

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The company says it has options available that will work with the following shifters:

SRAM X7 or X9 10-speed shifter pre 2014
XO pre 2014
2014 or later X7/X9/XO

Here's a look at the installation procedure, not for the complete novice but nothing the accomplished home mechanic should be worried about either:

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The most interesting part about this hack is the cost: the Rapide gear selector part is listed for 199 Rand, which is about $12 USD. More information on Rapide's website.

What do you think? Would you give it a go?

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1/25/2016 11:44 AM
Edited Date/Time: 1/25/2016 11:45 AM

Tempting, been looking at 1x for the fatbike and this might be the ticket. Shimano xt casettes are cheap from japan and would drop the need for an xd driver..


Just went to order and the website is down due to bandwidth

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1/25/2016 12:49 PM

Kinda silly to me. Not saying a shifter/derailleur isn't expensive but cassette, chain, ring, and (possibly) hub/hub body isn't exactly cheap either.

Those on a budget looking for the range of the modern day 11 speed setup? One-up seems hard to beat in my eyes...

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1/25/2016 1:38 PM

QFT Jeff, QFT. Though, as you said, the shifter and the derailleur are expensive (35 € for the GX shifter, 90 € for the der.), the whole kit (shifter, derailleur, cassette and chain) can be had for 230 € on bike-components for the GX group. Okay, you'd save ~100 €, but you could just as well sell the 10 speed shifter and derailleur and you gain the P shaped cage and the horizontal derailleur movement. Worth it IMO.

This would make sense with Shimano's XT cassette, yeah, but even that cassette costs ~80 €, while the FullPin Sram Cassette is something like 100 €. Not a massive saving.

One up is still the optimal way to go IMO (while staying on 10 speeds ofcourse).

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1/25/2016 1:56 PM

New Xt casettes are $80 usd on ebay, if you're patient and get them from a Japanese seller.

So $12 shifter mod, $80 casette and a KMC chain. Less than $120. I'm in.

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1/25/2016 2:07 PM
Edited Date/Time: 1/25/2016 2:09 PM

billings wrote:

New Xt casettes are $80 usd on ebay, if you're patient and get them from a Japanese seller.

So $12 shifter mod, $80 casette ...more

Seems like a boondoggle and a bunch of waiting for something that is more or less a "hack". Jury still out as to how well your current 10 speed stuff will work an 11 speed setting. My intuition says with exception of a select few people who will find this to be materially advantageous, it will be finicky and never work as well as a factory 11 speed setup. Again, for those who like to tinker go for it. But for most, spending the extra dough will be very much worth it.

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1/25/2016 3:29 PM

Every expander cog I've used either shifted ok on the low end or the high end - never both. 11 speed casette with proper ramping and tooth jumps will shift a heck of a lot better. If it doesnt work, I'm out $12 and buy a gx shifter and derailleur and sell off the 10 speed x9 stuff I already have

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1/26/2016 6:27 AM
Edited Date/Time: 1/26/2016 6:28 AM

I paid 205€ for xt mech, shifter, 11-42 casette and XTR chain shipped from Germany. I was considering updating my zee mech and xt cassete with one-up, which would cost me maybe 1/2 but would still be left with slightly used mech and worn chain/cogs. Decided it was not worth it and went for new. If you have classic hub upgrading to sram x11 sucks because of different freewheel, sole reason why upgrading classic hub with shimano seems rational. I mean its ok if you can get new freewheel easily but i dont think this is always the case...

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1/26/2016 10:02 AM

Point there. But yeah, appart from the freehub Sram's GX offering is not that much more expensive from Shimano's as it has used to been (X1 and X01).

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1/26/2016 4:26 PM

They don't ship to the US apparently, according to their website. Just emailed them. I bet shipping will be like $50 wich will make it not worthwhile.

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