Re: [CR]RE: Simplex and other French Garbage?


Date: Thu, 05 Jul 2001 17:50:25 -0400
From: Jerry & Liz Moos <moos@penn.com>
To: Hilary Stone <hilary.stone@tesco.net>
Cc: rfitzger@emeraldis.com, Leonard Bulger <bulger@erim-int.com>, classicrendezvous@bikelist.org
Subject: Re: [CR]RE: Simplex and other French Garbage?
References: <B76A3F0E.E8%hilary.stone@tesco.net>


I presume you meant "from those who have NOT used them". I will confess that the cheaper plastic Prestige in the early 70's did have a lot of flex in the cheap stamped jockey cage (much like the Campy Valentino). But the all-alloy SLJ (in its many variations) and even the plastic bodied but forged jockey cage Criterium found on the PX-10 worked much better than Campy NR. Campy NR derailleurs were strong and almost indestructable, as well as elegant looking, but the best comment I have read on them is that "a Campy NR will shift badly almost forever". French derailleurs, on the other hand, were sometimes less durable, but shifted the best until SunTour blew away everyone else with the slant parallelogram. One of my two PX-10's was having problems shifting when I bought it used. I replaced the worn chain, and the plastic Simplex Criterium, despite being 25 years old, immediately shifted twice as well as any Campy NR I own.

Regards,

Jerry Moos

Hilary Stone wrote:
> Simplex gear mechs are heaped with abuse principally by riders who have used
> them. The Simplex Prestige work really wonderfully offering a faster change
> with far less overshift needed than any pre-1990 Campag rear shifter. They
> also cope far better with wide range chainwheels with the shifter retaining
> its preciseness on both chainwheels. True they are fragile compared Campag
> Gran Sport but I certainly know which one I would prefer to ride with and
> it's not the Gran Sport. And the pre-parallelogram pushrod rear mechs also
> work wonderfully with a quick change even over 14-26T freewheels. The change
> is infinitely superior to the Gran Sport despite the crude appearance.
> Simplex mechs took a lot of stick in The Dancing Chain but the criticisms
> are not in general justified. Try a Simplex mech on your bike and you'll be
> surprised by just how nice they work rather than look.
> Hilary
>
> Russ Fitzgerald wrote:
> > .. and, oh, yeah - WHAT kind of gearing system was Fausto Coppi, Il
> > Campionissimo, venerated maestro and most Italian of Italians - what was he
> > using in the 1949 Tour de France?
> >
> > For that matter - in 1975, Bernard Thevenet sure didn't seem held back by
> > French parts ... and they didn't seem to be an issue for Jacques Anquetil in
> > his five TdF wins, either ...
> >
> > Seriously, deciding French bike parts are junk based on the Simplex Prestige
> > makes about as much sense as deciding Italian parts are junk based on the
> > Campagnolo Valentino or Gran Turismo.
> >
> > Leonard Bulger wrote:
> >> Not to mention headsets that wear out in a season, touring derailleurs
> >> that don't shift and sometimes break the frame, pedals that don't have
> >> replaceable cages, no pedal washers on the cranks...
> >>
> >>
> >> Jerry wrote:
> >>
> >> Yes, one misses a lot by using the inferior French garbage. Like none
> >> of those stylish little cracks on the spider of Campy cranks, no laboring up
> >> hills in a 42 x 24 because NR cranks wouldn't take 40T ring like Stronglight
> and you didn't want to spend the time adjusting chain length to get an NR
> derailleur to wrap a 28T cog, unlike Simplex rears that wrap more chain..
> No 15 minutes of bliss adjusting a Campy NR seatpost when a Simplex post can
> be adjusted in 30 seconds. No powering up hils on the 13T cog because the
> Campy shift lever has slipped into high gear, unlike Simpex retrofrictins
> that never slipped.