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  1. #1
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    Which Alfine 8 Shifter?

    I am setting up my 29er Inbred for bikepacking with an Alfine 8 disc rear wheel. I am looking for guidance in which shifter to buy.

    The shifter will go on a standard MTB bar with Speed Dial levers for BB7s.

    I see several types of shifters on the market for Alfine 8 hubs. My hub is the standard S501.

    Is this the shifter I need, an SL S503? Here is a link/photo:

    http://www.modernbike.com/ItemGroup.asp?IGPK=2126204102



    Thanks for the help!

  2. #2
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    The shifter to use depends on the cassette joint (CJ-8S20 or CJ-8S40) you have (should be in the small parts kit).

  3. #3
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    Which Alfine 8 Shifter?

    This is the small parts kit I was planning to order:

    http://www.modernbike.com/ItemGroup.asp?IGPK=2126203953


  4. #4
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    That looks like CJ-8S20. Better get Shimano part numbers from Modern Bike and verify compatibility.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by anga View Post
    The shifter to use depends on the cassette joint (CJ-8S20 or CJ-8S40) you have (should be in the small parts kit).
    No, it doesn't - the only difference between the two cassette joint kits is that one (CJ-8S40) has (questionable) weather sealing and the other doesn't. See here
    Cable pull, of course, remains exactly the same and the shifter you pictured is the only Shimano Alfine 8 speed trigger shifter there is (well, there's a silver version too).
    Or you could use the Nexus twist shifter if you want to but it's a bit "plasticky" feeling.

    If you can live without a gear indication you could always use one of these, of course.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Which Alfine 8 Shifter?-zerode-shifter-1.jpg  

    Which Alfine 8 Shifter?-zerode-shifter-2.jpg  


  6. #6
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    Which Alfine 8 Shifter?

    Thanks, guys. Thinking I will stick with the Shimano shifter for now, unless there is a compelling reason to go with the Zeroed. (BTW, I don't care about the optical thingy.)

  7. #7
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    The Zerode shifter (which of course is a SRAM X9 with a different index plate) looks and feels like a nicer bit of equipment, takes up a bit less space and has a different feel - not better or worse, just different.
    As an aside, it's not as leg/knee friendly as the Alfine shifter, as it has lots of nice sharp corners rather than being smooth and rounded.......

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy R View Post
    The Zerode shifter (which of course is a SRAM X9 with a different index plate) looks and feels like a nicer bit of equipment, takes up a bit less space and has a different feel - not better or worse, just different.
    As an aside, it's not as leg/knee friendly as the Alfine shifter, as it has lots of nice sharp corners rather than being smooth and rounded.......
    Are you talking from experience?
    The Zerode/Sram shifter is way nicer to use in every way than the Shimano one IMO. It's modified internally as well as externally. Multi shifts also unlike the Alfine one.
    About $90 from Zerode site. Highly recommend it. Other option is Nexus grip shift if you're that way inclined.

  9. #9
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    Yes, from experience, otherwise it wouldn't have occurred to me to comment on it.
    The only modification to the X9 shifter is the replacement of the original index plate with the Zerode one. There are no external mods, unless a Zerode decal counts.

    Yes, it multi-shifts but only upwards unfortunately, which I hardly ever use.

  10. #10
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    Which Alfine 8 Shifter?

    Ordered my Alfine 8 shifter a few days ago. Only went with it over ther Zerode because it seemed to have a smaller lever.

    My wheel looks beautiful -- built by Steve at SRLPE. I will have to post some pix.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy R View Post
    Yes, from experience, otherwise it wouldn't have occurred to me to comment on it.
    The only modification to the X9 shifter is the replacement of the original index plate with the Zerode one. There are no external mods, unless a Zerode decal counts.

    Yes, it multi-shifts but only upwards unfortunately, which I hardly ever use.
    I work for a business selling Zerodes, and we've never had anyone want to go back to the Alfine shifter. Hence why I was surprised by your comment. and you can't blame me for wondering if you were just speculating, it is the internetz after all. Where most people seem to just regurgitate stuff or guess.
    Yes different size inside. Was unaware of the term "indexing plate". Thought you may have meant something external, My bad.
    Still, statistically your 1 in about 40 that I know who prefers it.
    Sram is lighter, allows more brake positioning options, feels more ergonomic IMO. Just feel your comments were a bit misguiding from my experiences of lots of other users opinions. But to each there own. Alfine shifter is still fine. Keen to try the Nexus twit shifter I have some time. Good for multi shifts if that's what you want. Loved my Rohloff shifter for that reason, although you could over shift from time to time, and it had nice clunky shifts. Anyway, I'm rambling. Enjoy your shifter OP and Andy R. If you can't get your brake inboard far enough for one finger braking, get the Alfine one. Or if you want a lighter set up, tidier bars(match Maker).

  12. #12
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    Hey, Yo Yo, I think that you've got me a bit wrong here. I'm in no hurry to go back to the Alfine shifter and I think that its only advantage is that it is more "knee friendly" - although, to be fair, it's my shin that the Zerode shifter made a lasting impression on (well, the scar's still visible a few months later....)

    As far as the multi-shifting bit goes - all I meant was that it's not very often that I need to change up 2 or 3 gears at a time, whereas (if the 8 speed hub wasn't "rapid rise") it would be useful to dump a few gears in a hurry, like multi-shift was designed to do.
    The Zerode shifter is a nice, quality, alternative to the OEM shifter and looks like something that belongs on a nice, carefully specced mtb, unlike the Alfine shifter, which looks more at home on a shopping bike....

    Anyway - have a good 2014, man!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy R View Post
    No, it doesn't - the only difference between the two cassette joint kits is that one (CJ-8S40) has (questionable) weather sealing and the other doesn't. See here
    Cable pull, of course, remains exactly the same and the shifter you pictured is the only Shimano Alfine 8 speed trigger shifter there is (well, there's a silver version too).
    While the shifter (the part that attaches to the handlebar) is the same, the end where the cable connects to the hub is different for the two cassette joints. You can always buy the shifter for one cassette hub, obtain the extra parts and modify. Or, you can buy the shifter configured for the cassette hub that you own.

  14. #14
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    Looks like the OP bought the Shimano shifter, which work fine. I just want to add my experiences.

    I have two bikes with Alfine 8 hubs, one with the Shimano trigger shifter and one with the Zerode (mod'd SRAM) shifter. I'll say from experience that I prefer the Zerode shifter. While they both work well, the shifts seem more precise with the Zerode shifter. Also, it seems just nicer in quality, metal not plastic, etc... I've had absolutely no issues with either. I've also used both cassette joints with both shifters without issue.

  15. #15
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    Hello,

    Is it possible to use a bar end shifter in friction mode with an alfine 8?

    Thanks

  16. #16
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    It would shift, but the hub is so sensitive to cable pull and indexing, you'd be constantly tweaking the shifter and run the risk of destroying the hub.

  17. #17
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    Thank you!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by anga View Post
    While the shifter (the part that attaches to the handlebar) is the same, the end where the cable connects to the hub is different for the two cassette joints. You can always buy the shifter for one cassette hub, obtain the extra parts and modify. Or, you can buy the shifter configured for the cassette hub that you own.
    I have both Alfine 8 cassette joints, Alfine trigger shifter, Nexus grip shifter and three different Alfine 8 hubs. They all interchange perfectly without any issues WITHOUT any adjustments. I've never seen or heard of what you claim, please post part numbers and relevant Shimano documents to back up this claim.

  19. #19
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    If you have the CJ-8S20 cassette joint then all you need is the cable and shifter - if you buy the CJ8S-40 then in addition you need -

    Rubber Cover: Y-74Y 27000
    Outer Casing Holder: Y-74Y 28000
    Rubber Bellows: Y-74Y 30200

    The rubber cover and rubber bellows are for weatherproofing and the "outer casing holder" is just a cable stop which the ferrule on the cable outer fits into. Like on the 8S20 cassette joint really.

    There is only one shifter and the cable that comes with it is just a length of gear cable inner anyway, so what can change here?

    Maybe some places are selling a shifter bundled with the above three items but I've never seen anywhere that does and there are no different Shimano part numbers.

  20. #20
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    seat of the pants: the gods have spoken.

    Read this for shifters for CJ-8S20 and CJ-8S40

    If you want the part numbers, google is your friend

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by anga View Post

    If you want the part numbers, google is your friend
    Yes, they're the part numbers that I posted above.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy R View Post
    Yes, they're the part numbers that I posted above.
    The shifters for the two cassettes have different part numbers.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by anga View Post
    seat of the pants: the gods have spoken.

    Read this for shifters for CJ-8S20 and CJ-8S40

    If you want the part numbers, google is your friend
    I read the rant, you have misinterpreted the issue. In the rant, the user's issue has nothing to do with the shifter, only that if you go with the "sealed" cassette joint be sure to get all the parts. Both cassette joints work with any of the Shimano 8 speed IGH, Nexus or Alfine. BTW, I bought the sealed cassette joint and it came with all the parts.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by anga View Post
    The shifters for the two cassettes have different part numbers.
    Well, will you please enlighten this stupid old man and tell me what the part numbers are and how the shifters differ?
    As far as I know the only part number is SL-S500.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy R View Post
    ...As far as I know the only part number is SL-S500.
    As far as I know, you're right, if you read the long winded rant that is the reference for the claim, the LBS ordered the "improved" sealed cassette joint and it didn't come as a kit. I bought mine from universal, it came as a kit, Shimano part number ICJ8S40WT (scroll down ~2/3 of the page):
    Universal Cycles -- Shimano Alfine/Nexus Internal Gear Hub Parts

    Name:  99009.jpg
Views: 660
Size:  8.1 KB

    This cassette joint uses everything from the shifter (cable, housing, cable end/ferrule and cable anchor) but you have to remove the cable anchor to string the big fat sealed end and bellows that this cassette joint includes. Then you have to set the anchor to the correct position/length on the shifter cable so the hub shifts correctly.

    BTW, universal shows a new Alfine 8 trigger shifter (still only one part number) the SL-503, Shimano part number ESLS503210LLL:
    Universal Cycles -- Shimano SL-S503 Alfine 8 Speed Shifter

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