Note: Like another reviewer, this is a SRAM 5.0 front derailleur. There is no category for this part, so I put it with the SRAM rear derailleur.
The SRAM 5.0 Front derailleur is a royal POS. The thing is all plastic, except for the cage and spring.
I adjusted in on the workstand and everything was perfect. Then I took it for a test ride and it wouldn't shift into the big ring. I brought it back to the shop and it worked perfectly on the workstand. I tried modifying the behavior on the workstand, but I was only guessing and I couldn't get it to work correctly on the trail. I decided to try changing the front derailleur and I found a Shimano Deore front derailleur that was the right style and clamp size. I changed it, set up the height, rotation and limit screws and adjusted the shifting. Everything worked perfectly on the workstand and on the trail.
I would not even use this front derailleur to prop a door open.
a Cross Country Rider
from Decatur, GA USA
Date Reviewed: January 2, 2010
Strengths: Rode over 15,000 miles with no problems, even after hitting it on a curb. Only occasional minor adjustments and lube. Shifts cleanly and reliably.
Bike Setup: Truvativ Elita Crankset, Shimano Sora Front Derailleus, SRAM 5.0 Rear Derailleur and Shifter, SRAM 5.0 11-32 Cassette
a Cross Country Rider
from Budapest, Hungary
Date Reviewed: June 6, 2007
Strengths: Smooth and fast operation. Much better than its concurrent Alivio.
Weaknesses: I did not find any. For my purposes, it is perfect.
I like this derailleur. It is not expensive, operates very good and precise (with SRAM chains, freewheels, X GEN front derailleurs, 5.0 gripshifts). I use it mostly in the city. I have ridden with it more than 1000 miles, and it works so good, as in the first day. I hope it runs 2000 miles, and then I will change it for an X-7.
Strengths: worked for 2 years- during which it was never ridden off pavement until today
Weaknesses: Piece of $hit. The main housing that contains all the guts and the main spring is made out of a greenish blue plastic. The first 10 feet of off-road that I hit today COMPLETELY killed the thing. One small twig and I look back and see it wrapped around the cassette.
Lucky for SRAM, they pulled their heads out of their @sses and redesigned the 5.0 so that it now is made out of mostly metal.
I've had the pleasure of riding bikes with 5 of shimano's RD's, from an ultra low-end walmart one up a deore, and all worked well, twigs hitting them along the way. The first SRAM RD I try doesn't last 10 feet off road. I thought about getting an X.0, but they're way overpriced and have less metal surrounding the internals than shimano's RD's
Similar Products Used: Walmart crap "SIS", Acera, Alivio, C201, Deore, and the plastic crap that SRAM calls 5.0
Bike Setup: 2001 Univega DS900, with 4-piston XT discs, Selle Italia seat, and soon an XTR real derailleur
Date Reviewed: July 1, 2004
Strengths: Inexpensive. 1:1 "direct pull" is more forgiving of adjustments. Also requires less effort to shift to larger cogs. This product has evolved substantially over the years. The current ESP 5.0 is 8/9 speed compatible and appears to be the 7.0 design of a few years back.
Weaknesses: Early designs subject to breakage. A stick snapped the casting where it bolts to the hanger (keeps the hangar from getting bent :+) The earlier models I have say "Carbon Composite" Maybe they mean carbon steel? I see no plastic or carbon composite anywhere in the design
The latest incarnation seems to be a very good design. I like the GripShift system. I also like any system that separates the shifter from the brake levers. Wish they were Shimano compatible but will stick with the 5.0 drivetrain unless breakage continues to be an issue. If you prefer GripShift over thumb shifters then seek out the SRAM ESP components. I'd put the current design on par with Shimano Deore LX for quality. If you're an aggro trail rider consider 7.0 as the entry point.
Bike Setup: Barracuda A2FS CrMo hardtail. SRAM 5.0 GripShift. LX front derailleur. Shimano linear pull brakes, Tekro levers, Hutchinson Mosquito Gold tires.
a Weekend Warrior
from Caracas, Venezuela
Date Reviewed: August 20, 2003
Strengths: When it's clean and lubed, it shift....well let me think if there is anything else, maybe...it shift when is really clean and lubed. and additionally, when you keep it clean and lubed it shift. But nothing else.
Weaknesses: everything, think how to keep a rear derraliuer clean while you are in the middle of ride. crossing rivers, small ones, and going uphill and downhill. 15 miles away from civilization. it´s difficult. But think when your rear tire get flat, you change the tube and when you put rear tire on it´s place, and with your HAND!!!!! you pedal to lead chain to the selected cogs, and suddenly hear and strange noise, as if something have broken. Yes, it was the F......plastic rear POS derrailleur. it brokes!!!! only when I was pedaling with my hand with Bike upside down. to adjust chain. 15 miles away of everything, image me and my bike walking uphill crossing 26 times a river and WALKING!!! what the h..l composite means, cheap plastic?. Well now I have to relace it, but worse is that the bike has ESP 5.0 Shifter, and supposedly is not compatible with SHIMANO. because I won´t buy SRAM anymore.
SRAM bur in H...L, my feet hate you. I walked 15 miles in the middle of nowhere just because you can not understand what is SHIMANO´s secret. Composite, HA, HA, HA,. Plastic you mean, not even the no brand taiwanese deraileur in my son´s bike is to s....y as your´s. Do yourself a favor and fire the stupid guy who designed SRAM ESP 5.0 rear POS deraileur. Instead of a flamin chili i would like to give them a kick you know where. 1 chili? why can´t we give this kind of products 0 chili?
Bike Setup: Old pro flex reptile with almost all components upgraded, and off course not SRAM anymore
Date Reviewed: January 27, 2003
Strengths: Shifts fast, precise, and smooth
Weaknesses: nothing mechanical, but it looks like chunky
This came stock on my Madwagon hybrid bike along with Sram 5.0 shifter and I upgraded the no-name cassette to a SRAM 7.0 9 speed cassette and everything works killer. It was easy to adjust when I set everything up and hasnt needed to be adjusted since. Im happy with how well it works, but yeah it looks kinda funky and chunky, but oh well.
a Weekend Warrior
from Bristol, UK
Date Reviewed: September 19, 2001
Weaknesses: just about evrything NOTE THIS A REVIEW FOR THE FRONT DERAILLEUR
The SRAM 5.0 front derailleur simply won't work with Shimano parts, maybe it's better with other SRAM parts I don't know, but it's been hopeless for me. Out of the shop and I couldn't find 2 after being in 3. It can't cope with 1 or 8 on an 8-speed and it rattles with 2 and 7!! What is this? And now, when I come to replace it, the coup de gras is that my LBS says that it's hard to rplace it with something better cause this thing has eaten the cable and damaged the bracket guides. I don't want Shimano to become a monopoly, but if their rivals are gonna produce junk like this plastic pos then what else? I'm normally generous with my reviews, check them out, but I can't be with this, sorry... At least it's cheap, but who'd buy it on purpose?
Bike Setup: Saracen Havoc '01, now with total LX upgrade
a Weekend Warrior
from Kalispell, MT
Date Reviewed: July 30, 2001
Weaknesses: Seem to have to keep it REALLY clean. Only works with SRAM shifters.
Came on the bike. Seems to work ok if it's really clean. Every time mine gets the least little bit of dirt in it, it hangs and won't shift properly.
Crashed and hit it on a rock this weekend. Bent the hell out of the dropout and tweaked the derailleur. Didn't break though. Time for an upgrade anyway. Might just be my derailleur but would like something a little less suseptible to dirt.
a Weekend Warrior
Date Reviewed: July 6, 2001
Strengths: not too bad shifting if it works
Weaknesses: cheap, not very strong plastic
i took my bike out for a ride one day when i noticed my shifting was impaired. When i took a closer look i noticed the central disc that touches the frame to stop it from spinning round had snapped in two. I was not too happy when i had to walk two miles home.
Weaknesses: looks much lower quality then deore xt
My fuel 90 came with a deore rear derailleur wich I swaped out for my old xt one. I am thinking about swaping out the front derailleur wich is sram 5.0 with my old xt one. Have ridden it for a few rides now and the sram seems to work good, although it looks cheap is this composite or plastic? Guess I will weigh both and see which one weighs more. I've never had a problem with any front derailleur no mater how low quality, so I don't think it matters to much. Oh, by the way, I didn't notice much difference between the deore and the xt. The only difference noted was that the chain seems to be quiter going through the pulleys, so there is probably a little less friction.