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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just wanted some info from some people who know more than I do about this subject. So tell me what are the Pros and Cons of changing from 8 speed to 9 speed. All input is appreciated.
 

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Pro's - An extra gear, and it seems like there is more of a selection for 9 speed components, 9 - speed cassettes, shifters, etc.

Con's - I've heard that 8 - speed drivetrains require less fine-tuning. Another con would be that if you switch, you'll have to buy new shifters, cassette, and possibly chain and rear rerailleur.
 

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Mantis, Paramount, Campy
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Do A Thread Search

You'll find that everyone and their brother bashes 9spd for one reason or another.

Bottom line is they both work and both work great. If your 8spd stuff works, stick with it. If its worn out, by all means switch over to 9.

There wasn't much backlash when the switch from 7 to 8 was made. Guess what, there were more changes there than from 8 to 9. There wasn't an internet around for people to make and propagate wild claims either. Coincidence? Only you can decide.
 

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Pro's: Lighter weight kit, better shifters available for 9spd, handles cross-chaining better

cons: extra gear is mostly useless (it just fills in a gap, overall range is the same). Chains are less durable. lightweight cassettes wear quickly, no really lightweight 8spd chains (of course you can use 9spd chains on 8spd cassettes)

It's not a switch I'd bother with, unless I was having a really hard time getting cassettes or new shifters (note SRAM makes both in higher-end 8 speed form).
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the input. I am going to just ride what I have now until I wear the cassette and chain out then I will possibly upgrade. Just depends on how any more info i get looks to me. If I wait til then all I will have to get is shifters since I would be getting chain and casette already.
 

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I'm with Shayne on this one....

The 9 speed system shifts a bit quicker, less space between cogs. But it does take a bit more attention to keep running smoothly. But it is no harder to set up and maintain a 9 speed drive train than it is an 8 if you know what you are doing. A 9 speed is a bit more sensitive to debris in the cassette, grass, mud, leaves, whatever. I've never worn out 9 speed components any faster than any of the 8 speed stuff I've ever had so I think that one is bunk, but I suppose it depends on the level of components too. Any really stupid light drive train parts, whether 8 or 9 speed, will wear more quickly. The only real BIG advantage to 9 speed IMHO is the availability of components. Higher end 8 speed stuff it getting really hard to find anymore. There is still some nice stuff (XT and above) out there, but it's hard to find.

The bottom line is, both systems work just fine. So wear out your 8 speed stuff, then upgrade if you want to.

Good Dirt
 

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Squash said:
The 9 speed system shifts a bit quicker, less space between cogs. But it does take a bit more attention to keep running smoothly. But it is no harder to set up and maintain a 9 speed drive train than it is an 8 if you know what you are doing. A 9 speed is a bit more sensitive to debris in the cassette, grass, mud, leaves, whatever. I've never worn out 9 speed components any faster than any of the 8 speed stuff I've ever had so I think that one is bunk, but I suppose it depends on the level of components too. Any really stupid light drive train parts, whether 8 or 9 speed, will wear more quickly. The only real BIG advantage to 9 speed IMHO is the availability of components. Higher end 8 speed stuff it getting really hard to find anymore. There is still some nice stuff (XT and above) out there, but it's hard to find.

The bottom line is, both systems work just fine. So wear out your 8 speed stuff, then upgrade if you want to.

Good Dirt
The reason high-end 9spd will wear quicker is that there is more stupid-light 9spd stuff (think Ti cogs on XTR cassettes et al). XT and LX-spec 9spd wears no faster than the equivalent 8spd kit. But most 8spd kit today is bulletproof LX or Deore spec (or equivalent from SRAM) which is king for durability.
 
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