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  1. #1
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    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus

    First off let me state I LOVE MY SHADOW plus!
    It is awesome, it combined with my chain guide removes all chain slap. Not a single noise escapes the combo.

    But, yesterday while riding I noticed some chain noise from the rear and stopped to make sure the clutch was engaged. It was so I figured I was just riding extra badazz that day (ya right).

    Today I was checking over the bike making sure everything is tip-top for a trip to Santos tomorrow. I checked the tension on the der and found that engaged or disengaged the tension was the same. So I figured I should adjust the clutch in the der and which should stop the chain noise.

    I opened up the der to find that the tension adjusting clamp for the clutch band broke on the backside at the bend and wasn't providing any tension on the clutch band. I can only assume this will be warrantied and if it isn't then I can only assume this little part is really cheap.

    I also apparently have the new version that does not have the adjusting wrench included inside of the casing. You are supposed to use needle nose pliers to adjust the tension nut.

    The der works perfect other than the clutch doesn't work at all so I'm going to use it tomorrow and have it warrantied on Monday. I just wanted to give everyone a heads up and show the pics.

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-image-9.jpg
    How it appeared when I opened it up

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-image-10.jpg
    The broken piece

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-image-11.jpg
    It is really broken, that is the clutch cam it surrounds on the left and on the right is the tension adjusting nut

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-image-12.jpg
    How it is supposed to look on the clutch cam

  2. #2
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    Time to call Shimano. They will take care of you, they have good customer care, just explain to them the situation and they will probably just send you out a new one.

    Seems like a few of these have been breaking lately in the same spot. Also appears to be with the XT versions. I purchased an XTR version when the clutch mechanism was first released by Shimano back in 2011, and so far mine has not given me any issues.

  3. #3
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    Good if its a known issue they will fix it fast then!

  4. #4
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    I just got the same unit -- thanks for the heads-up!

    I also apparently have the new version that does not have the adjusting wrench included inside of the casing. You are supposed to use needle nose pliers to adjust the tension nut.
    My high-school auto teacher would be having a hissy-fit about now

    A 5.5mm ignition wrench fits perfectly. I got a "midget Craftsman wrench set" off ebay for about $12 delivered -- the other wrenches in the kit could be useful for other small work.

    A 7/32" wrench is pretty close.

  5. #5
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    I was going to use a 7/32 wrench I hate pliers as well!

  6. #6
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    Same thing happened on my SLX, they warrantied in less than a week.

    Now I've got an even weireder issue where it feels like the clutch is notchy, and engaged even when I set it to "off."

    It's awesome how you can deal with them directly and their warranty is awesome, but I think there is still some engineering to be done with the Shadow+. I'll just keep sending em back, as a new derailleur every ~3 months is not a bad deal.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by half_man_half_scab View Post
    Now I've got an even weirder issue where it feels like the clutch is notchy, and engaged even when I set it to "off."
    I would check for dirt inside of the roller clutch which is the saw blade shaped part that the tension band surrounds.

  8. #8
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    I cleaned it with a q-tip, but was afraid to hit it with isopropyl for fear of messing it up. Shimano said clearly in their service instructions that you are not supposed to lubricate it either.

  9. #9
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    thats sucks, but shimano will def take care of you fast. bummer that its was broke for your ride. if you know a welder he could through a couple tacks on that in 5 seconds. you'll probably get a whole new RD, my dust cover fell off my zee shifter and i inquired about buying a new one and 2 days later i had a new shifter in the mailbox. CS is awesome.

  10. #10
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    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus

    Just had my second XT Shadow+ break yesterday. My LBS and Shimano took care of the last one quickly and I expect no different when I take this one in.

  11. #11
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    Fishwrinkle-- I am a fairly decent welder but the metal is so thin it would have to be such low heat that the weld wouldn't be much better than chewing gum
    And the weld would add a lot bulk that there isn't room for

    The lbs already 2 dayed the der it should be back by Saturday or Monday

  12. #12
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    yeah i was thinking of an in a pinch solution. i fab with sheet metal all day, that looks like about 16ga, thats on the thick end of what i work with. 17.6V 190 ipm would get you nice flat tacks. i knew you'd have a new RD quickly.

  13. #13
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    Ha okay I use a big blue 700 the thinnest stuff I'll weld is 1/8th inch. Im pretty sure my welder isn't capable of turning down that low.

  14. #14
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    Just noticed my XT Shadow Plus clutch is not working....Only had it for a couple of months.

  15. #15
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    The clutch plate is what, a 3 cent part? Shimano should just call it a wear item, and stock shops with them until they can figure out a more robust design. It'd be a sh1tload cheaper than sending everybody new derailleurs every time.

  16. #16
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    ^^^ yep it would be and unless your shop is a "shimano authorized dealer" they can't just call them up and say " hey this is broken I need a new one" they have to return the part to shimano and let them decide.

  17. #17
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    Took it apart and sure enough it's that piece with the adjuster on it.

    So they won't send me a new piece? It's really easy to replace.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by half_man_half_scab View Post
    Shimano said clearly in their service instructions that you are not supposed to lubricate it either.
    That's weird, they show a tube of grease with a part # in the exploded view.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by canuck_tacoma View Post
    Took it apart and sure enough it's that piece with the adjuster on it.

    So they won't send me a new piece? It's really easy to replace.
    Call them and try
    It didn't help me my lbs had to send it off

  20. #20
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    thats weird, the xt's are having most of the problems b/c i've been running a zee for several months w/ no probs. i would assume that it is the same part from the trickle down, no?

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by fishwrinkle View Post
    thats weird, the xt's are having most of the problems b/c i've been running a zee for several months w/ no probs. i would assume that it is the same part from the trickle down, no?
    Could be the abuse it's taking? I have a feeling that piece is a "break away part" made to fail before major damage occurs on terrain that exceeds its ability.

    I bet those of us who break them will keep breaking them.

  22. #22
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    oh i see, it could be

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by canuck_tacoma View Post
    I bet those of us who break them will keep breaking them.
    I would think this is right and I'm fine with it as long as Shimano let's me buy them a dozen at a time to replace them

  24. #24
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    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus

    Mine is broken again. Third one.

    Shimano should just sell that little bracket that keeps breaking. I'd keep a couple on hand. Then I wouldn't have take off my derailleur. Take it to the LBS. Wait for Shimano to warranty it. Repeat.

  25. #25
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    Or just engineer it so it doesn't break -- better metal or a little more of it. It isn't a wear item, and should last as long as the rest of the derailleur. This is a design flaw.

  26. #26
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    Been having a similar problem with my XT. Noticed some chain noise. When shifting down into smaller cogs, enough movement to slack the chain as if it's "OFF". Shift back up to a larger cog and it's rock solid. Had the cover off to inspect and adjust tension and noticed the part mentioned in above posts looks slightly deformed.

    Got a race this weekend, so I'll be heading to the LBS for them to contact Shimano.

    Has anyone had this problem with the XTR or SLX? Maybe I'll upgrade to XTR.
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  27. #27
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    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus

    Quote Originally Posted by jdinsj View Post
    Has anyone had this problem with the XTR or SLX? Maybe I'll upgrade to XTR.
    Two of my hardest riding friends have over a year on their XTR ones with no problems. I'm going to get an XTR one this weekend and keep the XT as my backup.

  28. #28
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    I wonder what's breaking them, downshifts with it on just feel wrong and chain growth on some bikes must give them hell.

  29. #29
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    I wonder if the guys breaking them are running full-suspension? It continues to run flawlessly on my hardtail after 400 mi.

    If that bracket is flexing slightly and getting weakened as a result, it will happen a lot sooner on a FS, but eventually will break in any case.
    Two of my hardest riding friends have over a year on their XTR ones with no problems. I'm going to get an XTR one this weekend and keep the XT as my backup.
    The XTR doesn't even seem to have the part that is breaking.

    XT, part#8
    http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830801190.pdf

    XTR
    http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830801193.pdf
    From this diagram I can't figure out how the XTR works.

    Anyway, hopefully mine will last a while. I have an XTR FD, but don't want to spend the $$$ for an XTR RD being how exposed RDs are. I have broken one already -- fortunately just the SLX that came on my bike.

  30. #30
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    I probably won't bother with mine...pretty sure it will just break again.

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by DennisF View Post
    I wonder if the guys breaking them are running full-suspension? It continues to run flawlessly on my hardtail after 400 mi.

    If that bracket is flexing slightly and getting weakened as a result, it will happen a lot sooner on a FS, but eventually will break in any case.

    The XTR doesn't even seem to have the part that is breaking.

    XT, part#8
    http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830801190.pdf

    XTR
    http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830801193.pdf
    From this diagram I can't figure out how the XTR works.

    Anyway, hopefully mine will last a while. I have an XTR FD, but don't want to spend the $$$ for an XTR RD being how exposed RDs are. I have broken one already -- fortunately just the SLX that came on my bike.
    So, part #8 is the piece that is breaking? From the description, I was thinking part #7.

    Going to keep an eye on my XT plus derailleurs. Added a touch more tension to one of 'em -- might go back and dial that off.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by ncfisherman View Post
    So, part #8 is the piece that is breaking? From the description, I was thinking part #7.

    Going to keep an eye on my XT plus derailleurs. Added a touch more tension to one of 'em -- might go back and dial that off.
    On the XT its part #8 that is breaking #7 is the clutch band

  33. #33
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    The xtr diagram is the old version. That version is the one that includes the tool to adjust the clutch and the tool is part of the assembly

  34. #34
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    dang it. mine stopped working and I was just looking into how to adjust it. I'm opening it up this evening, and really hope that this piece isn't broken, but my guess is it will be. sheee-it.
    ​mountain biking is fun.

  35. #35
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    The cam unit (#8) in my XT RD also broke at the bend. I got poor service at my LBS. Any hope Shimano will just sell the cam unit so users can replace them? Seems like this is going to be an ongoing issue.

  36. #36
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    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus

    I got my new XTR the other day. Opened the clutch cover just to see if it was the same as the XT. It is definitely different, but I didn't get too deep to see if it had the same bracket. It didn't seem like it.

    I hope I have better luck with the XTR. Considering how much I spent on the damn thing, it better not break too.

  37. #37
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    The XTR model doesn't use a metal clip to support the actuator (the piece that presses against the friction band when you set the lever to 'on'). It sort of looks like it in some pictures but I think that's just the wrench for adjusting tension. From the pictures I've seen of the internals, it looks like it might be part of the housing or something. It looks a lot stronger, whatever it is.

    So yeah, mine broke today after just over 400 miles, and yes I'm on full suspension.

  38. #38
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    My clutch broke on my XT Shadow Plus after about 8 months of light riding. I dropped it by the bike shop yesterday. We'll see if Shimano warranties the part. I ride a hard tail.

  39. #39
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    +1 more for the broken clutch, about 3 months. I may have been running my chain a little tight. Shimano replaced it no problem. I replaced my chin and ran 2 extra links it seems to be running fine now.

  40. #40
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    I can't remember were I read it, but the XT+ on a FS bike needs 5 extra links for chain growth and to keep the FS chain stretching from stressing the RD. Which makes no sense? There is video of the clutch system on an FS bike that has the 5 extra links and the Plus system can barely tension the chain, as it was designed to do, when in front middle ring and the suspension is in its resting position.

    It's my understanding that the clutch system is not to reliable for FS bikes. In the long run it's cheaper to get a non-Plus RD and get some type of chain tensioner, whether it be an ISGC mount or a C.Guide.

    My XC bike will have a clutch when I get the rest of the grouppo; my AMTB will have a simple, inexpensive, 9spd-10spd RD with some type of chain tensioner. The Shred I'm getting will not come with an ISGC mount, So I'm going to have one fitted and welded to the BB shell.
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  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by pdxmark View Post

    It's my understanding that the clutch system is not to reliable for FS bikes. In the long run it's cheaper to get a non-Plus RD and get some type of chain tensioner, whether it be an ISGC mount or a C.Guide.
    Really?! Than why does Shimano offer Saint and Zee components with a clutch? Also, the trail version of XTR is the on that has a clutch.
    Formerly known as iceaxe

  42. #42
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    Broke my XTR m985 recently while doing some maintenance & I'm lazy to send it back.
    This is my quick fix using steel wire, hope it holds.
    In the mean time still waiting for my new frame replacement.
    Will test it and see how long it will last with my own quick fix.

  43. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by iceaxe View Post
    Really?! Than why does Shimano offer Saint and Zee components with a clutch?
    Because they have the tooling capability to make them, and people will buy them.

    I'm not saying that Clutch technology does not work on FS bikes, I'm just sharing an observation that clutch technology does not seem to work as well on a bunch of FS bikes compared to HT bikes. It also has to do with the rear end of a FS and how much chain stretch the rear triangle causes. The longer the arc on the upstroke, the longer the chain is stretched. There are FS frames out there with a longer arc in the rear travel and if your clutch and chain is not dialed properly for the stretching you will cause damage to your clutch mech.

    I know three people that have broke one or more clutch mechs this last season(in different ways) on their FS bikes. All of them have decided to use an ISGC mount with a chain tensioner to alleviate the cost of buying another clutch mech. I think they were smart in doing so, knowing that smaller parts break before beefier, thicker, stronger made parts break.
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  44. #44
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    Shimano did me right and I now have a new XT Shadow Plus rear derailleur. I sure hope the clutch lasts longer than 9 months this time.

  45. #45
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    My SLX+ clutch broke after 6 months moderate use on hardtail. Just about to send back for warranty, but meanwhile decided to pay up for XTR as don't see an SLX or XT replacement lasting any longer.
    The XTR M986 has a very solid looking machined stainless steel part in place of the pressed clip on the lesser mechs (it still has the little spanner, but I think the first XTR+ relied on the base casting to hold the nut in place).
    I would have gone for Zee having realised the SLX cage is longer than necc for 1x10, so have fitted saint cage plates to get a short cage XTR safer from sticks and stones - hoping it will last for ever like this, given the price!

  46. #46
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    Been running on an XT-786 Shadow+RD... It's been an excellent RD. Noticed a week or so ago that I was getting some chain slap. Didn't pay much notice, until I read this thread... Went and pulled the clutch cover and out fell the little metal / plastic band... Called Shimano the following day. Said the quickest way to get a replacement RD was to go through a local BS. Which is what I did. Asked the Shimano rep. if the issue was corrected in the new derailleurs. Said they were aware of the problem and yes, the problem was dealt with. New one is one it's way. Shimano is an excellent company to deal with !!!!

  47. #47
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    I bought one of these last month. I hope it is the updated one!
    However it has not broken yet, and l have been out on the bike dozens of times with it fitted.

    I did take the cover off today to have a look, and all seemed fine, but there was no visible grease on the clutch, like tgere is in the picture above.

    Should l grease the internal parts?

  48. #48
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    Anybody know the answer to this?

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    see techdoc: http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830789046.pdf
    a little grease may be needed under the friction spring, but not inside the clutch mechanism

  50. #50
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    Thanks for the info, that picture above shows the whole mechanism covered in grease!

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  52. #52
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    Over the past month I've been noticing chain slap while descending. I finally popped the cover on my clutch and found my cam was broken just like the OP. Thanks to posts like this it was easy to diagnose (Thank you!). I contacted the vendor I purchased it from and Shimano. The Shimano tech advised that I take it to my local Shimano Service Center (SSC) shop for them to help process the warranty claim. The tech was very familiar with this particular failure and stated the replacement derailleur has addressed this problem. My derailleur has been left w/ my local SSC shop and now I'm waiting to hear back from them after they contact Shimano. The Shimano tech mentioned a fast 3 day turnaround, but perhaps that's because I live in So Cal. I'll try to post back to give the finality of this issue.

  53. #53
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    Almost a year on my XTR shadow plus and zero issues. I have a Santa Cruz Nomad so I dont think having a full suspension has anything to do with the clutch failing. One question, how often does everyone flip the clutch on and off? I ride mine in the on position all the time. I flip the lever if I need to take the wheel off.

  54. #54
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    Mine's on all the time. I turn it off for wheel or chain replacement if I remember.

  55. #55
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    Follow Up:

    Shimano replaced my rear derailleur within about four days. It's unfortunate that they had to replace an entire derailleur for a failed cam, but I appreciate their support of their product. I just hope the weak cam has been fixed on this new derailleur!

  56. #56
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    Hmmm . . . . I'm in the "failed clutch" camp now as well, after not that long of ownership. Dropped it off at the LBS on Sunday, and yet no word back yet. I bet its the shop dragging its feet . . . . time for a phone call. I don't wanna keep waiting on a rear mech.
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  57. #57
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    I have kept my old rear mech, which is a regular XT. So if my Shadow plus clutch fails and l have to return it, l can put my old one back on the bike and keep riding while l wait for a repair/replacement.

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    Mine took best part of 2 weeks to sort by Chain Reaction Cycles - but I bought replacement out of own pocket to stay on the road (had no other 10spd mech) and received credit vouchers instead of replacement mech - OK if you know you're going to need to buy something else sooner or later.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 007 View Post
    Hmmm . . . . I'm in the "failed clutch" camp now as well, after not that long of ownership. Dropped it off at the LBS on Sunday, and yet no word back yet. I bet its the shop dragging its feet . . . . time for a phone call. I don't wanna keep waiting on a rear mech.
    Probably too late, but if you have proof of purchase, the fastest way to get your issue remedied is to take your broken derailleur to your local Shimano Service Center (you can figure this out via the Shimano website). Even though you did not buy it there, they can handle your warranty claim in an expedited fashion. Good luck!!!!

  60. #60
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    I called the shop today. They're just waiting on the replacement to arrive. Already been RMA'd, etc. . . . .they just planned on calling me when the new one came in. I probably would have preferred better communication, but whatever . . . at least they weren't sitting around on it.
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  61. #61
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    my SLX shadow plus on my FS Mojo stopped functioning after about one year.
    Clutch ON = Clutch OFF.
    No Shimano service centre on my island, 1900 kilometres away.
    That's the down side of living in bikers paradise.

    Just had an answer from the Shimano Service Center where I bought the derailleur:
    "Sorry the item is not in stock".

    No mentioning of if or when it will (or will not) be.

    Shimano service in Spain sucks.

    Last edited by las-palmas; 12-12-2013 at 11:10 AM.

  62. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdinsj View Post
    Been having a similar problem with my XT. Noticed some chain noise. When shifting down into smaller cogs, enough movement to slack the chain as if it's "OFF". Shift back up to a larger cog and it's rock solid. Had the cover off to inspect and adjust tension and noticed the part mentioned in above posts looks slightly deformed.



    Got a race this weekend, so I'll be heading to the LBS for them to contact Shimano.

    Has anyone had this problem with the XTR or SLX? Maybe I'll upgrade to XTR.
    Yep! My SLX 675 Shadow Plus has the Y5Y198120 (Shimano spare part number) "Cam unit" broken. Same as in XT. Bought a XTR 986 and it has a completely different system.
    Shimano here is not as friendly where I live as some of you have experienced.
    The Cam unit is not strong enough to handle the power of the spring that stops the chain jumping. I aggree with DennisF that this part is a design flaw. On pictures I have seen on the web they all break on the same side and on mine it is easy to see that this side is bended harder than the other side.
    If Shimano does not warranty it and does not want to sell the spare part the dérailleur can always be used as a rear shifter on a bike that is not going off-road.

  63. #63
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    Another one bites the dust! Noticed some chain slap after last ride and popped off the cover and found the busted cam mentioned in all these posts. Called Shimano and they said it would be taken care of via LBS.

    Thing is the shifting was still perfect and I wonder how many of these RD's are still being ridden with riders not aware of the issue. Shimano tech I spoke with did not indicate if this part was re-engineered so what's the odds of part failing again? My RD has seen only a couple of months of use and I have never broken drive train components so I am suspect of this XT design. Like the clutch when it's working, maybe bite the bullet and upgrade to XTR .

    For those who have had the fix, how is it working out?

  64. #64
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    1200 miles and no issues with the replacement. It works perfect

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    I've been riding / using my broken XT for the past month or so. The XT was given to me as a gift (4/13), so I am unable to come up with proof of purchase. I called and spoke with Shimano explaining my dilemma. They told me there is nothing they would do without a receipt. I called and spoke with my friend (the one who bought it) and asked if he could find the receipt or copy of same. Said he looked and could not find it. With that said I called Shimano back to see what could be done. Again, I was told nothing. And that my only option was to fill out a consumer claim form and send the RD in for them to review the claim. I was told that this process usually takes 4-5 days... Which in turn puts my bike out of commission for a good week plus... Needless to say. I am very dissatisfied with Shimano's lack of handling my situation.. Even the guy who works for Shimano said its known issue. Thats why there new Shadow Plus RD's have a different clutch design... So until I decide to be without my bike (thanks Shimano). I'll continue to ride with the broken clutch on my bike.

  66. #66
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    Not unusual these days, nobody seems to care.
    I guess Shimano will know they won't lose any business worth bothering about, so why do anything?
    Is there any way to know whether my XT Shadow + bought in October 2013 is the improved version?

  67. #67
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    I'm starting to wonder if the reason many are breaking is related to lubrication? I have 2 SLX M675 Shadow Plus , 1 from Feb , 1 from April, and then I just bought a Deore M615. I am hopeful any changes got into the latest Deore since they have only been out a very short time and have just showed up on a few sites for sale. They all use the same Shadow Plus clutch based on the Shimano Techdocs. After reading this thread, I lubed my SLX models this morning, one had a decent amount of grease, the other not so much and was kind of notchy feeling. I used Buzzy's sweet honey, and now they all feel the same, smooth yet taught with the clutch on. I guess time will tell.

  68. #68
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    I switched to the shadow plus in August and have broken three in four months. They last an average of 25 hours of riding time before the clutch breaks. I used to love shimano but they now rate far below Sram in my book. No 11 speed option and worthless a clutch derailleur for 2x10. At least they make a decent brake.

    Btw. I've been purchasing a new derailleur from jensonusa and then send the broken one back for a refund. That way I have no downtime and I don't have to deal with shimano warranty. I'm about to do this for a fourth time but it's getting really old. I don't have the money to switch to an xx1 system. Should have kept my 2x9.

  69. #69
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    Update - Shimano is apparently not replacing derailleurs anymore, just the broken cam and telling the LBS to charge for labor. Luckily my LBS is cool and just giving me the new cam to install myself. No biggie for me as its just 3 screws and pop it in but for a lot who don't work on gear they get screwed with a labor charge. Shimano doesn't want the LBS to just give the customer the part without install.

    Think Shimano stepped in shit and drug it all over the house on this one!

  70. #70
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    Funny timing coincidence with post directly above. Don't know if I was able to get this only because Shimano just changed their policy or if this has been generally available.

    When my clutch broke (that cam unit piece) last week, I just ordered a replacement piece from my LBS rather than dealing with a warranty on it. I couldn't get just that piece by itself - it came with the clutch/stabilizer unit and was billed as "stabilizer unit".

    Here's a pic with the shimano label and part number. LBS charged me $13 USD. A high price for a little piece of metal. But easier and faster than dealing with a warranty claim. Installed so, so easy in about 3 minutes.

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-clutch-shimanorear.jpg

  71. #71
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    ^^^ I will gladly pay $13 rather than not ride for a week
    Might order a spare here soon

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by WarBoom View Post
    ^^^ I will gladly pay $13 rather than not ride for a week
    Yeah, exactly. Was a no-brainer for me.

  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by addATX View Post
    Funny timing coincidence with post directly above. Don't know if I was able to get this only because Shimano just changed their policy or if this has been generally available.

    When my clutch broke (that cam unit piece) last week, I just ordered a replacement piece from my LBS rather than dealing with a warranty on it. I couldn't get just that piece by itself - it came with the clutch/stabilizer unit and was billed as "stabilizer unit".

    Here's a pic with the shimano label and part number. LBS charged me $13 USD. A high price for a little piece of metal. But easier and faster than dealing with a warranty claim. Installed so, so easy in about 3 minutes.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Looks like the cam in the XTR RD!

  74. #74
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    The rep thingy is broken, so I just want to say "Thanks AddATX -- I am filing this away in case mine breaks."

    I probably won't order a spare to keep on hand. If it breaks I´ll just live without that feature for a few days. No biggie.

    I have over 900 miles on mine BTW.
    Last edited by DennisF; 12-21-2013 at 08:02 AM.

  75. #75
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    In the UK at least, if an item is faulty (usually within 12 months from date of purchase) then the supplier has a legal responsibility to repair or replace it.

    If Shimano won't do anything then that is not the customer's problem. Their contract is with the supplying dealer/LBS etc.

    A bit like if you buy a new TV and it fails after a month, you would not expect to have to fit the new part yourself, or pay the shop you bought the TV from to fit it.

    The law states an item has to be "fit for purpose" and last a "reasonable time".

    This is not always good for the LBS, who then by the sound of it cannot recover the money from Shimano, but that is the law in the UK.

    However, having said all that, if I can repair it myself for £10 I would not be looking to recover that from the LBS that I bought it from.

  76. #76
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    My son bent a cog on the Deore cassette on his new bike in the first 50 miles. The Trek dealer wouldn't cover it because Trek wouldn't cover it, and normally he is pretty good about any problems you have with stuff you buy from him. The thing probably wasn't defective. I gave him mine that had 1800 miles on it and got myself an XT, and he broke that too. He is a big guy and likes to power up hills in high gears.

    Here in the US, some states have "implied warranty of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose" laws. I don't know if it is the duty of the retailer or supplier to honor this however. I have never heard of an individual consumer using this as an argument to get warranty coverage. With social media and all, stores are generally pretty good about replacing stuff.

    No doubt implied warranty is a factor in these class-action lawsuits against makers of defective plastic pipes that get eaten by chlorine and that sort of thing.
    Last edited by DennisF; 01-01-2014 at 09:32 PM.

  77. #77
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    I got one off an English internet site shipped to NZ in August. Was very good until it broke at the end of November, exactly the same as all the posts here, after about 350 kms of riding, on a carbon hardtail. I don't genuinely think this is a usage fail but a manufacturing/design fault. Something shouldn't fail after this amount of time under general use and I'm really surprised Shimano hasn't addressed the problem based on their usual product excellence and reputation. It just needs to be made out of heavier material, not rocket science!
    The internet store I sent it back too is sending me a replacement at no cost so will see how this one lasts. Based on the manufacturers 12 month warranty as applied I guess I'll be able to keep doing this until the XT M786 is no longer available and then get a refund and buy something else if it keeps on happening?
    The real question will be, what is going to happen when they all start failing on the 2014 O.E bikes as pretty much the XT + version is the standard derailleur on most middle to upper level bikes sold over here, Giant, Specialized, Merida, both HT and DS so there are going to be a lot of unhappy people if this hasn't been addressed.

    Just really hope my new one is and those replacement cam tensioners you guys are getting are redesigned strengthened versions. Such an easy thing to fix so you'd seriously hope so.

  78. #78
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    I'm getting about 30 hrs out of my shadow plus. Noticed a couple of chain drops on my last ride, just took a look and guess what? Broken, again.

  79. #79
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    Add me to the list...
    SLX M675 in my case, but failed in exactly same place as the others above.
    For the record, bought it in April 2013 and had done 531 kms before it broke.

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-img_6423-1024x683-.jpg

    I live in Australia and bought it from CRC in the UK.
    Have sent them an email with picture and will see what response I get.
    Last edited by PerthMTB; 01-02-2014 at 12:42 AM.

  80. #80
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    okay so far...

    I have a 2014 bike with XT Shadow Plus...only 200 miles and all appears good. Just for grins, I popped off the cover to take a look see. Nothing broke and just a very small amount of green grease in the clutch...gave it a kiss and put it back together.

    Just a side note regarding warranty issues. Generally speaking, the manufacturer's liability exposure is for a predetermined amount of time from date of original purchase. The key word is purchase...assuming a 12 month warranty, and you had a failure after 6 months, then all is good...for another 6 months. Your warranty clock does not reset for another 12 months. There could be exceptions if the manufacturer understands that the failures are due to a design or manufacturing defect. Just an observation cause after 20 years managing a Caterpillar dealer service department, I found it was a common misconception.

    I'd be interested what date Shimano made the engineering or design change or if they even acknowledge it
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-dsc01519.jpg  

    2014 Nail Trail 29...

  81. #81
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    It does seem like the problem is still not sorted with these, as people are having second and third failures with new units.

    The clutch system is superb when it works, so it would be better not to lose the facility.

    What about fitting the SRAM clutch rear mech instead? I have not heard of any failures with those.
    Will it work with Shimano shifters and cassette?

  82. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by lotusdriver View Post
    It does seem like the problem is still not sorted with these, as people are having second and third failures with new units.

    The clutch system is superb when it works, so it would be better not to lose the facility.

    What about fitting the SRAM clutch rear mech instead? I have not heard of any failures with those.
    Will it work with Shimano shifters and cassette?
    I believe there is a compatibility issue with shifters...shifter cable ratios are different...can't imagine cassette would care, but we don't have a cassette issue anyway. I certainly hope this is not as terminal as it appears at face value. At least it doesn't stop the wheels, it just breaks and transforms into a XT minus the shadow plus. The worst that can happen is a dropped chain. I am just going to order a clutch for the puppy-poop $$.

    I am also going to ask my LBS to make some calls and find what they can find that hasn't already been discovered here.
    2014 Nail Trail 29...

  83. #83
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    I live in Australia and bought it from CRC in the UK.
    Have sent them an email with picture and will see what response I get.
    Well, just got a reply and they're sending me a replacement mech and no need to send the original back.

    Great customer service Chain Reaction!

    Now we'll see if Shimano has strengthened that piece on the new stock...

  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by lotusdriver View Post
    What about fitting the SRAM clutch rear mech instead? I have not heard of any failures with those.
    Will it work with Shimano shifters and cassette?
    You can't mix SRAM/Shimano rear mechs/shifters. The Shimano cassette would work fine though.

  85. #85
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    An idea why they are breaking

    I was pondering why they would all be breaking at that one place -- the other corner of the bracket is of the same design and it isn't breaking. I first thought that if the outer eye slipped off the cam and had no support, it would flex at the place where they are all breaking. However, looking at the OPs photo, that doesn't appear to be the case.

    However, if you operate the mechanism with the cover off, the thing is quite flexy, because there is nothing to support the outer end of the cam.

    The outer cover has a ridge of plastic that the bracket fits perfectly into and holds it in place -- on mine anyway. If those ridges broke or if an older version of the shell did not have a good way to hold the bracket, this could explain the breakage. It doesn't look to me like there would be any way to improperly assemble the outer shell.

    Could ya'll compare your outer shell to mine next time you are in there and see if it is of a different design? Or if the outer shell looks damaged? A crack that would not be visible with casual observation could be the cause.

    Over 1000 miles on mine now BTW.

    Thanks
    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-cover-cam-small.jpg

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-cover-cam-small.jpg

  86. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by lotusdriver View Post
    What about fitting the SRAM clutch rear mech instead? I have not heard of any failures with those.
    There's been a few - SRAM type 2 derailleur issues and x.9 type 2 derailleur problems.

    Both companies seem to have a few issues with the overall reliability with the clutch mechs. Although, in saying that, so far I've had my XT clutch for about 6 months now with no issues, so I guess I've been lucky so far.
    I don't crash, I just have slightly uncontrolled dismounts!

  87. #87
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    Could ya'll compare your outer shell to mine next time you are in there and see if it is of a different design? Or if the outer shell looks damaged? A crack that would not be visible with casual observation could be the cause.
    My casing is the same as yours and has the recess for the cam, and isn't damaged in any way, yet my cam mechanism broke. To be honest, I think this recess in the casing is more to make sure the cam plate goes back in the right position when reassembling, rather than having any support function during operation, as those puny soft plastic ridges aren't going to add any strength to a metal cam mechanism.

    By the way, anyone know if the XTR cam can be fitted to the XT/SLX mech, as it seems to be a better/stronger design?

  88. #88
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    Mine is broken like all the others even though I have a SLX and not a XT.
    The reason they all break in the same place is that they all have the same part bended the same way and that the inner corner has the sharpest bend, so the metal is weaker there.
    With all the identical problems it must be called a design flaw, and I am quite sure that Shimano will get the metal piece made on a different machine for their next generation, as it should be no problem making a piece that can hold the spring in the clutch.
    Weather Shimano will admit they have made an error or not is another question.

  89. #89
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    I bought a XTR as my SLX did not last long. The XTR seems to be holding just fine, but I am not going to open that before it break, which I hope it does not, so I cannot answer your question if the parts from the XTR will fit in the SLX/XT.

  90. #90
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    Re: Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus

    Quote Originally Posted by PerthMTB View Post
    My casing is the same as yours and has the recess for the cam, and isn't damaged in any way, yet my cam mechanism broke. To be honest, I think this recess in the casing is more to make sure the cam plate goes back in the right position when reassembling, rather than having any support function during operation, as those puny soft plastic ridges aren't going to add any strength to a metal cam mechanism.
    Thanks for checking.

    No, it isn't going to strengthen the metal part, but I contend that it does hold it in place. Try operating the on/off lever with the cover off then on. It feels different.

    Oh well, an idea.

  91. #91
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    How about reducing the clutch tension?

    I reduced mine so the lever is loose until it gets to the edge of the Shimano symbol.

    The unit still works fine (no chain slap at all) and my clutch has not broken after a Summer's use.

  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by lotusdriver View Post
    How about reducing the clutch tension?

    I reduced mine so the lever is loose until it gets to the edge of the Shimano symbol.

    The unit still works fine (no chain slap at all) and my clutch has not broken after a Summer's use.
    Interesting thought that might possibly work. Reducing the tension to minimize chain slap (not eliminate), but still have some function might work, but I'm not sure it will eliminate failure.
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  93. #93
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    Great idea. No, it won't eliminate failure -- nothing lasts forever. But it should delay it a lot . As a thought experiment, suppose you loosened it so that it had no tension -- then it would last practically forever.

    Mine doesn't totally eliminate chain slap BTW. More like 90% of it.

  94. #94
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    How about reducing the clutch tension?
    I think you're onto something there. Shimano suggest a clutch torque of between 3.5 - 5.4 nm for the XT/SLX/Deore clutches. But they suggest a lower torque of between 3.1 - 4.1 for the Zee/Saint clutch. Its exactly the same clutch in the SLX/XT/Saint/Zee - same part number. All other things being equal you'd expect them to spec a higher clutch torque on the downhill groups as they are subject to greater chainslap forces, but instead they are recommending lower. Could this be to avoid breakage?

    However, its not a very satisfactory solution, as I already had my SLX set at 4nm which is at the lower range of the spec, and it still broke. In fact the only 'real' solution is for them to make a stronger part, which hopefully they now have, although nobody official seems to be able to confirm that.

  95. #95
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    Re: Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus

    Quote Originally Posted by PerthMTB View Post
    I think you're onto something there. Shimano suggest a clutch torque of between 3.5 - 5.4 nm for the XT/SLX/Deore clutches. But they suggest a lower torque of between 3.1 - 4.1 for the Zee/Saint clutch. Its exactly the same clutch in the SLX/XT/Saint/Zee - same part number. All other things being equal you'd expect them to spec a higher clutch torque on the downhill groups as they are subject to greater chainslap forces, but instead they are recommending lower. Could this be to avoid breakage?

    However, its not a very satisfactory solution, as I already had my SLX set at 4nm which is at the lower range of the spec, and it still broke. In fact the only 'real' solution is for them to make a stronger part, which hopefully they now have, although nobody official seems to be able to confirm that.
    It may be that way because the Zee (for example) uses a short cage, thus needing less effort to reduce chain slap forces.

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  96. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Warshade View Post
    It may be that way because the Zee (for example) uses a short cage, thus needing less effort to reduce chain slap forces.

    Sent from my HTC One using Tapatalk
    That's the most plausible explanation I've heard yet. However, if that is in fact the logic, then there should be different torque specs for different cage lengths. Longer cage lengths would have a longer arm and thus more leverage. More leverage, more torque...less length, less torque. Perhaps the logic is there and it's simply not documented or considered by Shimano. Good tribal knowledge. Thanks Warshade.
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    OK, what exactly are we torqueing? The adjustment screw or force required to move the cage?

    Tnx

  98. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by DennisF View Post
    OK, what exactly are we torqueing? The adjustment screw or force required to move the cage?

    Tnx
    We are referring to the torque applied to the clutch adjuster/tensioner bolt.

    PerthMTB referenced that "Shimano suggest a clutch torque of between 3.5 - 5.4 nm for the XT/SLX/Deore clutches. But they suggest a lower torque of between 3.1 - 4.1 for the Zee/Saint clutch."
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    Will that stabilizer unit work for the xtr rd. looks a little different as I can remove my little tool to adjust my clutch. I don't even need the clutch adjust piece I need the thing with the bearing. Mine keeps on popping out creating a lot of free play.

  100. #100
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    OK, what exactly are we torqueing? The adjustment screw or force required to move the cage?
    We're talking about the force needed to move the cage against the resistive action of the clutch - NOT the adjusting screw itself. To measure it you insert a torque wrench into the 4mm hex key recess in the centre of the clutch drum, and turn anti-clockwise with the clutch switch on. This will give you your clutch torque. To adjust it, turn clutch switch off, turn the adjuster screw, then re-check the torque until you get your desired setting within the range specified for your model.

    This is all straight from the Shimano shadow plus workshop manual...

    Clutch Broken on XT Shadow Plus-clutch.jpg

    It may be that way because the Zee (for example) uses a short cage, thus needing less effort to reduce chain slap forces.
    That's plausible, but as Cleared2land says, if that's the reason then you'd expect them to spec different torque settings for medium versus long cages as well. Unfortunately the workshop manual doesn't explain why there are different settings for XT/SLX/Deore versus Saint/Zee.

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