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  1. #1
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    XTR M980 Cassette Issues

    Anyone else having problems with XTR M980 cassettes? I've had two of the 11-36 cassettes and seem to have issues with the pins on the Ti cog carriers coming loose, primarily the carrier that the 24 and 28t are pinned to. For reference I race cat 1 XC and weigh ~180 pounds.

    After using the cassette exclusively on my race bike for ~1 year I replaced it with another M980 11-36. When removing the worn out cassette I noticed that the pins holding the 24 and 28t to the carrier were loose. Since it was worn out I didn't think much of it and just thought it was a fluke. After replacing the cassette with another I was having great luck with it until this weekend. I was going up a very steep punchy climb and was putting a LOT of power into the pedals. About halfway through the steep climb I heard a CRACK and my leg/quad slammed into my bar/stem, only thing I could think is the chain snapped. After I got off and walked to the top of the climb I found that 1/4 of a Ti cog literally fell out, leaving the other 3/4 of the cog hanging by the single remaining pin. When I removed the cassette from my freehub I found that the pins had completely popped out and were loose in between the carriers/cogs/etc.

    The cassette wasn't very worn since it was replaced about 2/3 of the way through last year's race season and only used on my race bike. Now I'm out a $300 cassette and have a gigantic bruise on my quad (I'm lucky that's all that happened).

    I'm trying to decide how hard I should push my LBS to get shimano to warranty the cassette. I already had to replace it with an XT cassette since it could be awhile before shimano sees it. The XT cassette seems stronger/more rigid due to the steel cogs and more rigid carrier since 3 cogs are pinned to each carrier. If it's that much stronger/more durable I don't have a huge problem with the ~60 gram weight penalty. At this point I'm not sure I'll use the 980 cassette if they do provide a warranty replacement since I've lost faith in the durability for stronger riders.

    Just trying to get a feel for if this is a more common problem than shimano would like to admit. Anyone with experience?

  2. #2
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    Components typically won't be warrantied once they've been raced on. Companies cite rougher use as the main reason.

    I have not personally heard of that happening with XTR/Dura Ace cassettes, but considering the mode of failure, I imagine that if it was going to fail, it would be there.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by wschruba View Post
    Components typically won't be warrantied once they've been raced on. Companies cite rougher use as the main reason.
    I could possibly understand that, except for the fact that the R in XTR stands for race.

    I won't lose any sleep if the cassette doesn't get warrantied, I just won't be buying any more XTR cassettes. Lesson learned. Mainly curious to see if others have experienced similar issues.

  4. #4
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    If you can't get warranty replacement you could try ordering replacement parts:
    MTB FAQ's

    http://techdocs.shimano.com/media/te...9830708778.pdf

  5. #5
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    Good news, shimano is stepping up and sending a warranty replacement.

    Need to decide if I should go with the XT cassette I picked up, or use the XTR replacement. Will the strength/stiffness of the cogs be that much better on the XT?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiflow_21 View Post
    Good news, shimano is stepping up and sending a warranty replacement.

    Need to decide if I should go with the XT cassette I picked up, or use the XTR replacement. Will the strength/stiffness of the cogs be that much better on the XT?
    Did you ever have a similar problem with the XTR 11-34 cassettes (9 speed)? I wonder if it is the extra leverage from the 36T or is the design for the 10 speed way different on the XTR cassette than the 9 speed versions?

    Glad to hear Shimano will provide a warranty replacement.

    BB
    The 14 warmest years have all occurred in the 16 years since 1997.

  7. #7
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    Thanks for the info. Sticking with XT cuz they last a couple years.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by BruceBrown View Post
    Did you ever have a similar problem with the XTR 11-34 cassettes (9 speed)? I wonder if it is the extra leverage from the 36T or is the design for the 10 speed way different on the XTR cassette than the 9 speed versions?

    Glad to hear Shimano will provide a warranty replacement.

    BB
    Can't say I've used the 9 speed XTR cassettes. Only began using XTR cassettes when making the jump to 10 speed.

    I don't think the breakage has a lot to do with the bigger cog. The main reason I say that is because I was in either the 24 or 28t when the cog/carrier broke. The 32 and 36t cogs are on their own separate carrier. I haven't had any hub issues due to the 36t cogs, although I run fairly stout hubs.

    This weekend I rode in KC with an XT cassette 1x10 and seemed to prefer it. Seems slightly stiffer, I didn't get some of the odd sounds I normally get out of the XTR cassette in certain gear combinations. Part of that could be due to the better chainline 1x10 provides.

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