Update: I took my wifes bike to the LBS. After about 20 minutes of messing with it he was able to get it not to hit, and not to rub the der. however it did not want to shift into the granny gear when the rear was in the first 3 gears. I figure hell, it was better than I could do so took it on home and ordered the x-gen. Got bored during the day and began to mess with the LX Fr. der. again and wouldn't ya know, I got it to shift fine on ever gear, no rub, no frame bash. So it can be done just takes some luck I guess.
Ok, got the Sram X-Gen and finally have had some time to work on installing it. Below are some pics comparing it with the stock XT, unmounted and mounted. As you can see, the X-Gen gives significantly more clearance at the rear of the derailleur, and definitely clears the front of the right chainstay with plenty of room to spare. (However, I eventually reinstalled the XT derailleur -- see my next post for more on that.)
Ok, so from the pictures above, looks like all is good with the X-Gen, right? But there were actually two issues with it. 1 -- The inside surface of the X-Gen seemed to provide a little less clearance with the lower (red) linkage. Still cleared OK, but made me a bit uncomfortable. Also, 2 -- the X-Gen mounts higher on the seat tube and close to the point where the welds were for the upper linkage support (see pic). # 2 might be a deal-breaker for frames smaller than my 19", but I'm not sure how and if the weld points differ on different sized frames.
These two issues, plus the fact that the X-Gen was a bit heavier, made me decide to modify my XT and go back to it. I used a bench grinder to grind off about 3/32" (see pics). Actually, it's only the inside-rear point that needs to be removed, but I ended up grinding it evenly across the whole back edge. Mounted it back on, and it clears fine. I guess if it wasn't already back on, I might have taken another 1/32" off to provide a little more clearance.
Bottom line summary, IMO: X-Gen works better than unmodified XT, but for me, modified XT was a better choice than the X-Gen.
Got out the dremel tool and got the front deraileur to not hit the rear triangle. Good deal.
Problem is that while it does not hit the right rear chainstay, the inside edge of the front deraileur
still contacts the lower pivot point (red piece of aluminum). Not as dramatic as where it was hitting as shown in some of these pictures. The way that I noticed it was by compressing the shock completely while in granny gear. I noticed that I do not hit the
rear triangle, but the front deraileur moves away from the frame as I fully compress the
shock. Any one that has "fixed" this? If you have tried to fix it, does your front deraileur
still hit the frame, just not at the right chainstay. I was able to move it out with deraileur
adjustments, but then middle and big ring rub on the chain. .
I got an email from someone at IH to call them if I had problems and that it was very tricky
to get right.
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