Shimano ALTUS Derailleur

2.98/5 (83 Reviews)


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Product Description

Shimano Altus FD-M190 Front Derailleur perfect replacement derailleur for your 8-speed (24 speed) bike or as an upgrade from cheap stamped-steel versions.


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Reviews 1 - 15 (83 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Marcus

Date Reviewed: September 1, 2014

Strengths:    Very good when new, I did on and off road riding with it no adjustment needed good shifts every time. Then my friend had my bike for over a year, he did the same with no problems.

Weaknesses:    When I got it back it wasn't quite as good and needed adjustment to make work good again, after a while (now 6 years old) it is unreliable even with adjustment I can't seem to get it quite right. I would say it is now worst than on a £65 Halfords bike that I had with more mileage under it's belt than this has.


Bottom Line:   
Excellent for a cheapo unit when new but as bad as the cheapest available on the cheapest bikes once a few years have rolled by. A quality unit such as the one on my race bike which is XT spec has never been adjusted and never missed a gear, I bought that bike 2nd hand 10 years ago.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Loveriding

Date Reviewed: August 3, 2013

Strengths:    These came on my kids 29ers. We wanted something better than tourney and I stressed to the bike shop they had to be reasonably reliable and able to handle the trails in the mountains. They told me these would be ok. They have actually worked out pretty well. Wihile certainly no deore XT or SLX for that matter, they have performed admirably. My kids have gone some pretty good moderate level trails and they have worked reasonably well. No gains ripping just because or lackluster shifting. On the road no trouble at all. I could see upgrading them down the road but for now, we are satisfied with them.

Weaknesses:    Way better than shimano Tourney and other cheap products. Feels very similar to alivio and acera.

Bottom Line:   
For kids that are really getting into mountain biking, these seem to fit the bill well before dropping hundreds of dollars on higher end stuff. They work well for helping kids grow and learn about shifting.

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:3
Submitted by David

Date Reviewed: June 23, 2013

Strengths:    I bought this as a first mountain bike (had a Target mtn. bk) from a real cycling shop (life tune-ups), planning to do about 30% off-road and the rest on pavement. In the time I've had it, putting about 3,200 miles on it (one year), I've learned some of the nuances and the shifting has been smoother. On my recent tune-up, it appears the inexpensive derailleur is good for at least another 1,000. But I also clean it weekly.

Weaknesses:    Shifting difficulties from the beginning, which I had to learn how to handle the nuances. When I've cleaned the bike and it's tuned, the shifting is smooth, but even after a couple/three rides, you might have some troubles shifting. On the road, the rear derailleur will do well. Off road, the bumps create problems. Ghost shifting occurs when unexpected. This is a derailleur that, for the money, will take you from point A to point B. However, if you're looking for something that allows you to ride without thinking about babying the derailleur, this is not the one.

Bottom Line:   
On the whole, it can work for me, as I've been more a road cycler than off, but when the time comes to replace, we'll go to something more substantial. Considering Deore.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Albert

Date Reviewed: April 6, 2013

Strengths:    Cheap, very durable, reliable

Weaknesses:    Its branded Altus, not the sexiest beast on the road

Bottom Line:   
I have an old Miele UA 150 that I've used as a commuted for 10 years. Its been all stock up until only fairly recently. I have personally put about 2000 km on city streets, initially on the knobby tires and only recently switched to road slicks. Its never been anything but smooth shifting. It has slipped from time to time, but so far, the drive train is still all original. Have wiped out hard a few times and despite a few scratches on the body, its been non worse for wear. Should be cleaned as often as anything else, but I'm very happy with its performance and how long its lasted to date.

Overall Rating:3
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Dan

Date Reviewed: September 23, 2012

Strengths:    It's cheap and pretty reliable as long as your not doing anything wild with it. Holds adjustment pretty well.

Weaknesses:    Shifts like garbage up hill and is on the poor quality side. Get what you pay for.

Bottom Line:   
I got this derailleur on my first xc bike. It comes standard on a DB Response. Only issue I had with this item was that the bike techs at dick's had a hard time with adjusting it and it was a full cog off when I got it home. About 5 minutes of adjustments and it was fine. Never needed to adjust it again. The bike is gone forever and I have upgraded to XT components on my current ride since then but I still have this derailleur laying around in case I ever need it for some reason.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Andrew

Date Reviewed: August 2, 2012

Strengths:    Well, it's cheap I guess

Weaknesses:    Can barely shift under a small load, very low quality, weak.

Bottom Line:   
If you don't do any serious mountain biking this could work, but the shifting is more road worthy than MTB.

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by Caleb a All Mountain Rider

Date Reviewed: June 8, 2012

Strengths:    Good looking, shifts precisely and quickly

Weaknesses:    None

Bottom Line:   
The Shimano ALTUS is a outstandIng Derailliur for everything to my concern I use It road biking, MTB and just to ride around town I have had it for a year and it hasn't needed adjustment it shifts quickly and precisely every time never skips a gear on the cog it is the same as my dad's Shimano Deore XT that came stock on his Marin Quad XC it shifts just as quickly, smoothly and precisely.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Beverly Park

Purchased At:   Northtowne Cycling a

Similar Products Used:   Shimano Tourney, Deore

Bike Setup:   26" Schwinn Ranger

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:3
Submitted by osmith99

Date Reviewed: May 8, 2012

Strengths:    this derailleur worked good for the past 2 years, it shifted perfectly

Weaknesses:    just the other day a stick was grabbed by it and it bent and twisted the deraillleur and bent my frame :(

Bottom Line:   
good but not worth the damage

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by jsmith75 a Weekend Warrior from Hopkinsville, Kentucky, USA

Date Reviewed: March 10, 2012

Strengths:    Holds adjustment well. Shifting was not affected by mud buildup.

Weaknesses:    Durability may be a concern.

Bottom Line:   
This rear derailleur came stock on my Trek 3700. I have ridden with it for just under a year until it broke today. Picked up a tree limb in the the chain and bent up and broke the derailleur and broke the mounting bracket. Not sure if it was a lack of durability issue or just bad luck.
During the year a used it I did not need to make any adjustments. It always shifted good as long as the chain was well lubed. I think it would serve most trail bike riders well. Probably not good enough for the serious rider. I cannot compare the shifting speeds with any other derailleurs. I will post a review on the Alivio when I get the back from the shop and get some miles on it.
I give 3 chilis for value, this is a good entry derailleur and is very economical but may not last very long if used frequently.


Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Canal Loop

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Purchased At:   Wood and Wave

Similar Products Used:   Shimano Alivio

Bike Setup:   Trek 3700

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:1
Submitted by jkrispies a Cross Country Rider from Palmdale, CA

Date Reviewed: September 26, 2011

Strengths:    None by my account

Weaknesses:    Won't stay in adjustment-- period!!! So what's the point???

Bottom Line:   
Other reviewers claim that this is intended for an easy-going city bike rider, so I won't give it a single chili as an overall rating for that reason alone. Will definitely give it a single chili as a value because it isn't one-- will replace it with way too few miles on it to be considered anything but a liability. Having acknowledged that this is allegedly a "lightweight" shifter, it came to me as OEM on a cross-country bike that I ride cross country, ten miles at a stretch, on dirt, with lots of bumps... and the last time I checked this was a site for real riders. So, take this review as you will. This front Altus refuses to stay in adjustment. End of discussion. My LBS has adjusted it 4 times so far, and it'll usually make it about a mile before it starts giving me fits. I've given up on it-- heck, I've ridden Schwinns bought at a Target that stay in adjustment longer than this thing!!! Will be replacing it with a higher end Shimano or SRAM in the near future.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Still Looking

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Purchased At:   Came With Bike

Similar Products Used:   Various Shimano wares

Bike Setup:   Stock Specialized Hardrock, plus Time/Sette clipless and Kenda Karmas

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:5
Submitted by mihajlo a Cross Country Rider from SRB

Date Reviewed: July 23, 2011

Strengths:    Great shifting if adjusted properly and used as intended. Very cheap, looks good. Easy to adjust and install. Precise shifting.

Weaknesses:    None for this price range.

Bottom Line:   
Great rear derailleur for city riding and trekking. Not for DH/FR, dirtjumping...Good performance, precise and smooth shifting.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $20.00

Purchased At:   PlanetBike

Similar Products Used:   Shimano Tourney

Bike Setup:   Shimano Altus RD, Altus shifters, Tourney FD, SR Suntour fork, SR Suntour crankset.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by AWDfreak a Weekend Warrior from SF Bay Area, CA (USA)

Date Reviewed: June 24, 2011

Strengths:    Cheap

Weaknesses:    Slow shifts, extremely weak

Bottom Line:   
Not for anyone who even thinks about riding on mountains or adventuring. I would say the Altus is only suitable for those who ride mostly on pavement, don't care so much about their bike, and will only ride off-pavement once in a long time.

My personal experience is from much riding in mud. The Altus was clearly not for those adventuring in mud.

Very light-use derailleur, not for the adventurous or those wishing to ride on trails a lot.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Similar Products Used:   crappy Shimano Acera, Shimano Deore, Shimano Deore XT

Bike Setup:   8-speed cassette

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:4
Submitted by CheezyBack a Cross Country Rider from Gosford, NSW, Australia

Date Reviewed: May 24, 2011

Strengths:    Alright shifting if you get it set up well, a little slow at times and occasionally skips.

Weaknesses:    WEAK AS ALL HELL. the thing keeps bending at the connection to my rear forks, then cause of a few problem spokes it decides to play a little orchestra behind me of spoke to derailleur contact. looks pretty damn ugly aswell.

Bottom Line:   
If your just going to use it to much around on to and from the shops, or perhaps commuting then i guess its ok. anything above that and your asking too much of it. the construction is sturdy except at the connection to your frame, the shifting is slow and sometimes innacurate and takes a fair amount of fiddling to get it shifting nicely. dont even try and use this for jumps...your just asking for bent spokes.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Tommo's track

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $30.00

Purchased At:   Anaconda

Similar Products Used:   Shimano SLX shadow, Alivio.

Bike Setup:   Weinman xtb 26" rims, 2.1 Crossmarks, Sr Suntour xct v3's, bb7 with 6" tektro rotors, alivio cassette, alivio crank, prolite saddle blah blah blah....

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by csmac2004 a Cross Country Rider from Kamloops, BC, Canada

Date Reviewed: September 30, 2010

Strengths:    Cheap, reliable

Weaknesses:    Cheap, ugly

Bottom Line:   
The bottom line is that this derailleur is perfect for the money. I hit a log within 1 month of buying my bike in the spring (Alivio derailleur originally on then) and bent/busted the rear derailleur. Not having much cash but needing to ride, I bought the Altus for $30. Yes, it's ugly. Yes, it's cheap.

However, do I have issues with it? Not in the least. I have put over 2500 kilometres on it and it shifts just as nicely as when new. Each cog is hit precisely. I clean and do any necessary tuning every weekend (I commute to work, 5 days a week, 2 hours a day riding trails). I ride this bike with buddies riding bikes that cost 3x as much just as fast if not faster than them, so this derailleur is seeing more abuse than it was made for and yet it is standing up without an issue.

With proper maintenance and tuning, this derailleur is a great buy for the money. For those complaining about it not keeping adjustements for more than a few minutes, there might be other factors to consider (like shifters, cables, housing). Honestly, my bike is entry level with cheap components and it is all holding up to my abuse in stride. I ride the bike as intended, CROSS COUNTRY. I do not drop off 10' drops or hit berms and jumps! Obviously for that riding, spend the money to get something durable. For cross country, this is a fine product.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months

Price Paid:    $30.00

Purchased At:   Taboo Cycles

Similar Products Used:   Alivio, STX, Deore LX, Deore XT

Bike Setup:   Altus drivetrain, RST Gila front fork, Tektro I/O mechanical disk brakes

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:2
Submitted by Stefan Stojanovic a Cross Country Rider from Belgrade, Serbia

Date Reviewed: July 22, 2010

Strengths:    Cheep

Weaknesses:    Needs adjustments constantly. I would go to the mechanic and he would adjust it so that it works flawlesly. Ten minutes later it needs readjustment again (chain slips off, it's hard to change from the second to the third gear, the chain rubs against the cage etc.) It even broke six spokes on my largest chainwheel on my first Tourney crankset, and one on my second Deore crankset.

Bottom Line:   
If you don't change the front gears too often - it's great for the money. It changes gears pretty okay apart from going from the second to the third gear. Of course, if it breakes cranksets while going to the third gear, it's no good at all.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $12.00

Purchased At:   PlanetBike

Similar Products Used:   Some Shimano, now I've upgrated to Deore XT.

Bike Setup:   Capriolo Gila (avid v-brakes, 8-gear cassette, Sun Tour fork, Deore crankset)

Reviews 1 - 15 (83 Reviews Total) | Next 15

Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


Shimano Altus + Schwalbe Big Apple 28x2.35 on Trek X-Caliber is a nogo?

Hello. I have Trek X-Caliber 7 bike and I wanted to switch bit more tarmac friendly tyres on it, Schwalbe Big Apple 28x2.35. [URL="http://www.trekbikes.com/us/en/bikes/mountain/cross_country/x_caliber_29/x_caliber_7_2014/#"]X-Caliber 7 - Trek Bicycle[/URL] Front derailleur is Shimano Altus. Problem ... Read More »

HELP!!!PLS. i need help with my shimano altus shifters.

i have a giant talon 27.5 4 and i today i was riding around and the shifter for the front derailleur broke. When you would try to upshift there was no resistance. so i flipped the bike over and i took it apart to see what was wrong with it and when i was looking around the nut holding everything pop ... Read More »

RD Recommendation for a Shimano Altus ST-EF51 Shifter?

Hello everyone. I just purchased a Shimano Altus ST-EF51 7 speed shifter and it does not seem to be the same pull ratio as my current rear derailleur (SRAM) The cable on the shifter moves approximately 3/4" and my cogset is approximately 1-1/4" Will an Altus RD work? Should I spend a little more ... Read More »

Need RD suggestion (Altus broke)

I somehow got my RD caught up in my spokes on my Diamondback Response, bending the hanger and the sprocket plate coming off the derailleur. It seems like I might as well spend a couple of extra bucks and get an upgraded RD. The bike has a 7-speed freewheel rear hub. I was thinking I'll get a Deore ... Read More »

Changing stock Altus 7 speed RD to Deore on a Hardrock 2011

I have a Specialized Hardrock 2011. Yesterday, while doing a bit of cross country the RD hanger snapped and I managed to wreck the 7-speed Altus RD. Should I just replace with another Altus or would it be possible to replace it with something a bit tougher like the Deore. I don't really want to repl ... Read More »

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