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Trying to put together the second 'cross bike and I am not a parts snob. In fact, I have some fun out performing some guys who are using Dura-Ace or Record level stuff. PLUS, less overtime lately means less money for toys... so here's what I'm looking at:


Campagnolo Mirage Brifters, 10sp, and set them up for a ShimErgo situation

Microshift Brifters (Sampson, Forte and Nashbar house-brand).


Anyone with experience with eithe one? I find reviews either really happy with Mirage or disapointed. And how does Microshift work in a race-situation? I can get the 9-sp version from Performance (Forte) pretty reasonabley.  I see some reviewers love them, some people have issues reaching the smaller paddles. Would they realistically be useful or an hinderance if raced?


Thanks in advance for the time and help.

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hey there - we reviewed the sampson stuff in an early print mag - it worked fine. i didn't love the little paddle moving a bit when you shifted the bigger paddle - a small complaint, really. it was fine for budget levers.

what's your budget? I've seen new veloce levers on ebay for $100 sometimes. granted, some have the escape mechanism but i see newer/older ones too.

another option is to buy one higher level campy lever. you can do that pretty reasonably with campy (local shops can order through quality, or you can order directly from shops' websites, like Then go single ring or barcon. I've been known to do that. yes, it's retro, but it's light and trimable. lots of new england legends won plenty of races using two barcons - even after brifters came out. using it for the front works really well.

good luck and let us know what you decide. as you probably know, I love the shimergo set up. check out the upcoming issue 9 for more shimergo bike geek content.
thanks for the input. I di go back and re-read the Sampson review. Was wondering about durability and such. I have been keeping an eye on Veloce stuff, but I'm not on eBay daily so I tend to miss some stuff. But I'll probably end up going that route (Shimergo). And yeah, I've got barcons on several of my older bikes. Used them for... 5 or 6 years now. So I suppose that's always an option and retro or cheap or whatever.

Just looking for something durable, not a lot of cash outlay but not out of place on the Airborne. thanks.
i understand the desire for something affordable. if you do go one side only and don't order it new, there are deals to be had, like this auction that ended for an almost new campy veloce lever. there's a more used one here, but it looks like an Escape model.
OK, well... I had a bid on a Mirage set of brifters after reading several reviews that had them equivicable to Shimano 105's. Then I read several reviews that related them more to Sora-level stuff, and I read Andrew's reply, and I had hoped someone would outbid me. As usual, the one time you *don't want to win an eBay auction, there it is.

And here is where my complete lack of Campagnolo shifter knowledge is: What is it about the Escape mechanism that seems to be less-than desireable? What I've been able to find says they're lighter and require less maintenance. Maybe that's not the case? In any event, yes, the levers I got have the Escape mech.
hi jd,

if you're coming from shimano and haven't used campy before, you'll be fine - upshifts (harder) are single shifts. if you're an old campy user, you might miss it. I'd say in cx there are def. more opportunities to want to shift several gears at once, but coming from shimano, it's no different right?

but once you read issue 9, you might be bumming just a litte. sorry that's all I can say for now!

i did see a pair of new athena 11s for $120 on ebay. and somehow i found myself going through checkout a few seconds later (funny how that happens even if you can't afford it - but it's for the benefit of CXM readers!). now I should be able to run shimano 9 or 10. stay tuned.
UPDATE: Finally got the bike built up, and here's what I used:

Campy Mirage 10-sp brifters
Sram 11-30 8 speed cassette
*old* Suntour Seven shortcage rear derailer

went with the Suntour rear derailer because is was a short cage that could clear the 30t cog. And it has the old-n-funky vibe. Results? Works AWESOME!.

Too bad I'm selling the Airborne, but going to move this setup over to my main bike.
I am looking at your set up and thinking that if I went with Campy 10 speed I could rock one of my 2 old Suntour Superbe Pro 7 speed derailleur on a Shimano 8 speed cassette? is that an approximation of what you did? Just trying to see if I actually might have a couple of old "new" derailleurs in my parts bin!
Yep, that's it exactly.
And on my other bike, I run 9-speed Tiagra brifters, 9-speed cassettee with a very old Deore rear derailer (Back when Deore was top of the line touring stuff). Takes a bit of time to get dialed in, but once done it works great.
OK, maybe not exactly. My Suntour 7 rear derailer was from the friction shifting bit, so the top pulley didn't float, which meant quite a bit of fiddling to get it to get it right in the middle of the range. A newer derailer from an indexing system would work better. Or I could have just swapped out top pulleys.
wow, this suntour derailleur was from the index era, right? if so, that makes sense I guess since bridgestone used to mix/match the suntour shifters with shimano mechs I think. this is pretty cool. take some pics before you dismantle. i wanna see this.

too bad my old superbe is all pre-index. that's really interesting (in a geeky way).


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