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Shimano puts their spin on Narrow Wide chainrings, adds 11-46t cassette, quick link, new gearing, more!

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Shimano Prototype Cassette

Remember that mysterious 11-46 wide range Shimano cassette we spotted last summer in the photo above (courtesy Willow McEvoy)? Now it’s official, along with several other new mountain bike technologies and designs that’ll be making their way to XT and XTR this summer. It’s 11-speed only, and target weight is 450g. Other than that, no images or info have been released.

Maybe the most noteworty is Shimano’s entry into the narrow-wide chainring category – sort of. Shimano isn’t coming out and calling it narrow-wide, rather their DCE (Dynamic Chain Engagement) tooth profile. We’re hoping to see one in person soon, but from the digital rendering it appears that the wider teeth have distinct regions which contact the chain, followed by a shark fin-looking tooth that isn’t quite as wide. In addition to better chain retention, and less noise, Shimano also places an emphasis on durability with different constructions…

Shimano-Dynamic-Chain-Engagement-narrow-wide-chainring-design

XTR (SM-CRM91) receives strengthened aluminum teeth for less weight, and XT (SM-CRM81) sees steel plated teeth for even greater durability. Click to enlarge either image for better detail.

Shimano-SM-CN900-11-speed-chain-quick-link

Shimano has attempted a quick link before, but it hasn’t stuck around. Perhaps the new Quick-Link SM-CN900-11 will be the one. Compatible with all Shimano 11 speed chains, the link appears to look more similar to other links on the market compared to the last Dura-Ace quick link.

Shimano-FC-MT700-2-mountain-bike-crankset

Shimano is also introducing new gearing options for entry level 2×11 and 3×10 cranksets. Meant to provide lower gearing for those who need it for steep climbs, the cranks include the Dyna-sys 11 FC-MT700 34/24 double with Hollowtech II arms, and the MT500 40/30/22 3×10 triple with a two piece crank arm.

Shimano-SM-RT10-mountain-bike-disc-brake-rotor

The lower end groups also see new brakes with non-series M365 and M315 hydraulic disc brakes which slot in under Acera. The M365 will be a bit lighter thanks to an aluminum lever. To go along with the new brakes Shimano has a new Centerlock lock ring for 160 and 180mm SM-RT10 rotors. Instead of cassette tools, the lockings will use either the TL-FC36 serrated wrench or TL-LR11 socket tool for installation.

Pricing is still TBD, but everything should be available for purchase this summer.

Bike.Shimano.com

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Mike Bechanic
Mike Bechanic
8 years ago

How do you say “eating crow” in Japanese?

codyish
codyish
8 years ago

TL;DR – Shimano SRAMifies their components.

i
i
8 years ago
Reply to  codyish

true, but being Shimano it’ll work better and cost half as much. You can already get a complete XT 1×11 setup that shifts better than anything Sram has ever made and costs less than an XO1 cassette.

Garrett
Garrett
8 years ago
Reply to  i

I gotta disagree. While some may prefer the feel of one over the other, SRAM stuff just doesn’t have the same quality. I have been told by bike shops that SRAM has to offer their awesome crash replacement to keep customers, because if you crash, something will break. Avid/SRAM brakes? Heeeeck no. Been there, been almost deafened or driven to madness by the horrible squeaking. Never had that issue with Shimano.

nightfend
nightfend
8 years ago
Reply to  Garrett

Garret, you are not disagreeing with anyone. Re-read the message you replied to.

Myke
Myke
8 years ago
Reply to  nightfend

I own a x01/xx1 & XTR m9000 groupos Shimano wins in my world and I think if one weighed what the positive attributes of shifting in general Shimano would win. That being said they are both great in their own regard.

Eric Hansen
Eric Hansen
8 years ago
Reply to  i

I love SRAM stuff because I can pull it off a new bike, sell it for wholesale + 20% on eBay, then replace the entire drivetrain with one that actually works.

duder
duder
8 years ago
Reply to  i

> costs less than an XO1 cassette.

X01 cassette is a work of art, it’s lighter than anything Shimano has out, and XD is a superior interface. Sram’s had x-dome out for several years and Shimano still hasn’t caught up.

myke2241
myke2241
8 years ago
Reply to  duder

never had such issue shifting with my M9000 kit. but i have had shifting issues with my X01 stuff, i actually have had both rear DR’s fail on me. but the issues that sram has had is slightly greater on my end.

fiddlestixbob
8 years ago
Reply to  i

that’s a lie. I love shimano as much as the next guy and have both a X01 and an XT (w/clutch) based mtb. The X01 shifting is leaps ahead of the XT setup. The XT setup is very finicky and sometimes fail shifting in particular. The X01 setup is absolutely perfect. I can’t fault it. Well, except for the price maybe.

That new version that is specifically made for 1x looks great though, if they undercut sram prices I’m right there.

fiddlestixbob
8 years ago
Reply to  fiddlestixbob

Note: I’m talking about the XT setup with 1xand a narrow-wide chainring of course.
In 2x the XT is very good.

Eric Hansen
Eric Hansen
8 years ago
Reply to  codyish

Really more like “Shimano releases components to mollify the ignorant, while continuing to iterate and innovate their vastly superior 2x electronic drivetrain.”

Matt Faulkner
Matt Faulkner
8 years ago
Reply to  codyish

Right. Because Sram has definitely never used any technologies developed by Shimano. At least none of the following: Indexed shifting, dual pivot road brakes, splined cassette bodies, derailleur specific cable housing, shift ramps, vee brakes, electronic shifting, integrated shift/brake levers, splined 22mm BB spindles/cranks, hydraulic road brakes, outboard bearing BB interface, lined brake housing, chain pickup pins on front chainrings, clutch derailleurs, trigger style shifters…

dustytires
8 years ago

There is no proof that Shimano performance is any better, one can’t quantify that. You either like the feel or one of the other, like dating, you gotta ride it to decide. Half the price hah not even with shimano whoring parts to Chain/Wiggle are they ‘half’. An XO1 cassette is in the XTR catagory as SRAMs lightest. ALL cassettes are pricy today, regardless of brand. SRAM may price the XO1 lower than XX1 as it is not nickle plated, but that makes it a good deal over XX1, not comparable to XT. Shimano stuff works great, everyone knows that but in order to be a Shimano fan boy you must make compromises in gear range and their crow eating quick link, 46t and half thick tooth profile are crow none the less.

Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden
8 years ago
Reply to  dustytires

Call it eating crow if you like. I prefer to think of it as having the balls to not release a product if they can’t make an argument for why the one they’ve engineered is better than the other options. Shimano pulled their quick links because they weren’t satisfied with THEIR quick links. It had nothing to do a ‘quick links are bad’ philosophy. They didn’t release carbon cranks because they don’t have a, ‘me too’ philosophy; they have a, ‘is it better’ philosophy. They didn’t release narrow wide in their original profile because they had a better (real or perceived) idea. Now they’ve improved on that by incorporating narrow-wide with that original idea.

I’d argue after owning several high end groups from both Shimano and Sram, both road and mountain, that both companies have beta tested on consumers from time to time, but Shimano’s initial quality is consistently higher, and they’ve never screwed up so bad as Sram with, e.g., hydro road rollout.

i
i
8 years ago
Reply to  dustytires

I get it, you are a Sram fan, and will disregard the fact that on Jenson, right now an M8000 cassette sells for $67, where an X01 goes for $263. X01 shifter: $115, XT $40. X01 derailleur $229, XT $60.

every part sells for well under half; actually closer to a third. You are either incredibly bad at math or have a bias. (deleted)

B
B
8 years ago
Reply to  i

i, how much does Jenson charge for the Shimano cassette that’s as light as an XO1 cassette? Oh that’s right, they don’t make one that’s even close.

Erik
Erik
8 years ago
Reply to  i

Ladies, ladies, let’s turn off the internets and go ride our bikes.

Ol'shel'
Ol'shel'
8 years ago

What are the odds our current 11spd derailleurs will work with 46?

What?
What?
8 years ago
Reply to  Ol'shel'

It will work! Already using an E-Thirteen 9/44 with zero trouble.

Duzzi
Duzzi
8 years ago
Reply to  What?

I have been using XT 11-speed with a 45 cog (One-up) with no problem at all.

MP
MP
8 years ago

So basically Shimano noticed that nobody buys their stuff anymore because outdated gearing and finally decided to admit thy were wrong and copied Sram?

Miffed
Miffed
8 years ago

And what are the odds that the 11-46 will work with my long cage SRAM 1x rear derailleur. Cause we all know the gaping hole in shimanos line up is a gravel set up. Give us a clutch rear derailleur that works with road levers, or better yet a di2 gravel setup.

preston
preston
8 years ago

I would like to use the new XTR (or XT) cranks, but they don’t make a 32t middle ring, and no one is making aftermarket 2* rings for these cranks.

“cranks include the Dyna-sys 11 FC-MT700 34/24 double with Hollowtech II arms, and the MT500 40/30/22 3×10 triple”

These are the same ratios they’ve already offered.

Duzzi
Duzzi
8 years ago

Great News! 11-46 is where it should have been from day one. It has exactly the same range of 1042 but avoids the stupid 10 cog and the need of a non-standard hub.

XT level means getting the cassette for around $75 retail, but I wish Shimano had a XTR 11-46 around 350 grams. That would be very nice!

bearCol
bearCol
8 years ago

Late to the party but better late than never. I switched to xt rear mech/shifter and couldn’t be happier. I’ll probably stick with sram cassettes unless shimano offers something lighter. I can live without the xd driver and 10t as long as a 44t or lower is offered so I can up the front tooth count. As of now, shimano cassettes are just too heavy to get me totally away from sram.

Marin
Marin
8 years ago

Copying is the best form of flattery.
I don’t know what people see in Shimano at all.

Used to have Deore, XT M785/786 and it’s shifting was worse than X7/X9, not to mention X01 I have now.

Having used X01 for 1.5 years now I only had to adjust it once.

XO1 is just amazing, no Shimano comes close especially considering 1x.
Cassette is 2x lighter, you don’t need large front ring to cope with 11t and shifters have much smother action.

I’ve bashed my X01 RD and it’s working perfectly whereas one small nudge to my old XT sent it into the wheel and broke it along with few spokes.

Not to mention clutch mechanism had a life span of fruit fly because that small coio would break and you get automatic downgrade from M786 to M781.

Walt
8 years ago

Hard not to see this as near-total capitulation on Shimano’s part. But nice to see an alternative 1x/wide range system that can compete. Vive la difference?

Gilio
Gilio
8 years ago

And If we want to have 35T in front on a 1×11 drivetrain?

dave macdonald (@davechopoptions)

Seriously? Run a 34T and a larger volume rear tyre?

APRO
APRO
8 years ago

RUDEBOYYYYYY

Eric
8 years ago

Can we all just relax? What is the point of arguing SRAM vs Shimano? And really, who cares? You cannot win the internet! Just ride what you like.

Oh, and 46t rear is f’ing gigantic!!!

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