Hi. I'm currently piecing together a bike for touring/ commuting/ and perhaps some cyclocross. I'm trying to use parts on hand as much as possible to save some $$$. My question is about deraileurs.
So I've got an Shimano XT deraileur from the late 90s and also a Shimano RSX 100 deraileur off a road bike from the 90s as well. The "mountain" XT deraileur is a medium cage length while the "road" RSX is a long cage length. Uncle Sheldon says that "long" cages are better for touring applications but doesn't explain why. My impulse is to use the smallest cage length possible for maximum chain tension/ better shifting. My gut feeling is to use the XT for this reason. Both bikes had 32t as the largest ring on the cassette so I'm pretty sure either would work (right?). I'm going to use the cassette off the road bike since its relatively new, if that matters.
What puzzles me is this - if shorter cage length deraileurs have snappier shifting, why did this road bike which certainly looks like the geometry was made to be "racy" come equipped with a long cage deraileur? Does it even really matter?
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