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I have a Fuji Absolute 2.0LE with straight handlebars, mini-v brakes, rapid-fire shifters, 3 chainrings, 9-speed Tiagra derailleur. I found a set of drop bars with Shimano 105 integrated brakes and shifters that I'm considering swapping on.

I'm ok with bike maintenance -- done plenty of brake, spoke, derailleur adjustments, but I've never done the full cabling that (I think) would be required here.

My questions: Are the shifters and brakes compatible with my bike? How big a job am I looking at here? Will I need any special tools?

Let me know if I can provide more specifics or pictures of anything.

  • For an proper answer we need to know which series Tiagra derailleurs you have (googling 'Fuji Absolute 2.0LE' provided ambiguous results). 10 speed 4700 series, 10 speed 4600 and 9 speed 4500 all have differences. If the bike is 9 speed it makes things simpler. If 10 speed and you don't know if you have 4700 or 4600 add a photo of the rear derailleur. Also, is this a double or triple chainring bike? – Argenti Apparatus Apr 9 at 15:12
  • Also, what brake calipers do you have? Specs i found online indicate mini v-brake calipers. – Argenti Apparatus Apr 9 at 15:16
  • 3 chainrings, 9 speed casette, mini-v brakes, and the drop bars say shimano 105. Updated the question with all that info. Thanks! – nvioli Apr 9 at 16:17
  • 105 went 10 speed in 2006. If you have the older 5500 9 speed series I'd say it would be better to get something newer. Tiagra 4500 or Sora 3500. See en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shimano#Road_groupsets for overview and timeline of Shimano road groups. – Argenti Apparatus Apr 9 at 16:43
  • You're saying that (assuming they were made after 2006) the 105 shifters on the drop bars are 10 speed, so they wouldn't work with the 9-speed cassette on the bike, right? – nvioli Apr 9 at 17:14
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Assuming your bike is specced out as per these pages: 9 speed Tiagra (which is presumably 4500 series), Shimano SL-R440 shifters, triple chainring, Tektro mini v-brake calipers.

Any Shimano 9 speed triple drop bar shifter/brake units will work with the 9 speed Tiagra derailleurs. 'Flight Deck' refers to Shimano's computer integration with buttons in the shifters and does not identify the units you have.

Mini V-brake calipers also work with road brake levers, unlike regular full length v-brake calipers.

Be aware that flat bar frames generally have a longer reach geometry than drop bar frames, as flat bars don't position the hands as far forward as drop bars. You'll need a short stem to compensate for that. A short stem will speed up the steering a bit as the bars need to move a smaller distance for a given angle of rotation of the fork and front wheel.

Replacing all the cables and housings is not technically necessary but you will be replacing a a big enough part of them that you might as well go head and replace everything. Retain old housings as you can use some of them to cut new sections to the proper length. There are plenty of good guides available such as this video from Park Tool. A special cutter is needed to cut housing and cable and alternative is a Dremel type tool with a metal cut-off wheel as this does not squash the housing (although it does melt the inner lining which need to be cleaned up).

Update based on additional info provided - OP has 105 shifters.

If you have the older pre 2006 5500 9 speed series I'd say it would be better to get something newer. Tiagra 4500 or Sora 3500.

If you have 5600 or 5700 series 10 speed triple shifters an option is to upgrade to a 10 speed cassette. The Tiagra 4500 derailleur will actually work in this setup as all Shimano road groups 10 speed and below used the same derailleur actuation ratio (ratio of cable length pulled to lateral cage movement).

If you have 11 speed shifters that trick will not work as the actuation ratio is different and most 11 speed cassettes will not fit on a 8/9/10 speed hub. If you determine the shifters are not compatible you can of course sell them on ebay to finance the purchase of an alternative.

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  • Agreed - Flight deck levers are simply normal levers with some added sensors, and a connector for a wire to the computer. – Criggie Apr 10 at 0:14

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