For those who have decided to step into the world of racing bikes, Shimano has prepared a warm welcome. Although not entirely an entry-level, the Tiagra set has been substantially improved this year so as to fit this category of users. Today, we’ll thoroughly look into derailleurs and levers.
The rear derailleur
Following the consistent upgrading the whole set underwent in 2012 (the most notable thing being Tiagra’s going to 10 speeds), the rear derailleur looks better than ever. Finishes are decent, there’s no objection to make in this respect, only design can perhaps be improved, because the current one it is quite simple. The best of this derailleur is how it works and compatibility with any Shimano 10-speed. Operation is very accurate and fast, especially if we refer to the destination of this set. Of course, things could be better, but with a Tiagra set, but any beginner will get a good start in point of racing bikes.
The version we tested is for three chainrings drive trains, and this means long cage. Thus, if you are not sure of yourself when you face a road with many ascents, you can always install a 28-tooth sprocket so you can be sure that this derailleur will order the chain to climb smoothly. The present version weighs 266 grams, 100 grams more than the top of the range, Dura-Ace.
Weight: 266 grams
The front derailleur
This part does not have anything special, but it works well both in the ups and downs on the chainrings. There would be room for improvement, but I must take into account that I tested a set that has not been run. A possible disadvantage could be that this derailleur can’t be used for plates with more than 50 teeth. So if you want a higher ratio, you have to consider the cassette. But, again, if we consider the target audience of this set, the problem mentioned is unlikely to occur.
The 4603 Tiagra front derailleur has two clamp versions: one, with its own clamp collar, weighing 132 grams, the other to be mounted on to a clip on specially welded on the frame, weighing 114 grams.
Weight: 132 grams
Now let’s have a look at their appearance. It has not been improved, which could be a minus. It doesn’t look like high quality product, giving a slight impression of manufacturer’s negligence. From an ergonomic point of view, levers are not sensational either, though they offer an acceptable level of comfort. However, I recommend you to equip yourself with a pair of cycling gloves for consistent grip.
In terms of functionality, the Tiagra 4600 levers are working above average. Like I said earlier, derailleurs operate with accuracy, which is true for levers as well, as they control the movements these parts must perform. The cable travel has an important influence being an effective choice in this case. As for disadvantages, I mention the 520 grams of this pair of levers.
A useful property of 4600 Tiagra levers are the two indicators in their end. They are designed to show the sprocket and also the chainring on which the chain is placed. Given the large number of ratios to choose from, there is a risk of a wrong choice, this article (http://www.freerider.ro/mag/cum-sa-utilizezi-corect-vitezele-bicicletei-tale-24537.html ) explains why. So, the two displays are very welcomed, especially because you do not have to watch the derailleurs, so you can stay focused on the road.
Weight: 520 grams