Hello It seems that the stock 52t chainring for a road triple ultegra 9 speed is on back-order or has been discontinued. Is there a replacement that will fit and shift? This is for my wifes Trek and she is not one to be told " Just baby it a little on the up shift " Thanks in advance for any and all help in this matter.
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You should be able to replace your chainring this with any 9 or 10 speed chainring that is 110 BCD (which is the Bolt Circle Diameter for the spider on an ultegra triple crankset).
Tiagra/105/ultegra replacement rings should all fit, as well as most 3rd party manufacturers replacement rings. Make sure the ring you want to use as a replacement has ramps and pins so that it will work as well as the original. Stick with shimano parts to be sure of the best performance with the ultegra drivetrain.
I had the same problem and found that the 6603-52T, made for the 10-speed Ultegra, works just fine on the 9-speed triple. BCD was 130.