Shimano XTR Shadow Derailleur

DESCRIPTION

The Shimano XTR RD-M972 'Shadow' specific rear derailleur features a lower profile body with direct cable routing, stronger spring, and redesigned bracket to avoid chainstay contact. It also has a wide link parallelogram design which allows for more rigidity and more precise shifting. It features:

  • Designed for 11-32 and 11-34 cassettes only.
  • Carbon cage and aluminum B-attachment with a Top-Normal return spring (ideal for RapidFire Shifters)
  • Wide link parallelogram design increases rigidity and service life
  • P-body rubber bumper reduces noise and adds durability
  • 4 flourine coated link pivot bushings minimize friction
  • Aluminum construction with sealed bearing 11 tooth pulleys to reduce wear by alternating tooth contact
  • Speed: 9 speed
  • Min/Max rear cog: 11/34T
  • Capacity:
    o 33T (GS Medium Cage)
    o 45T (SGS Long Cage)
  • Weight:
    o 180 grams (GS Medium Cage)
    o 185 grams (SGS Long Cage)

  • USER REVIEWS

    Showing 1-10 of 22  
    [Sep 25, 2015]
    DavoG
    Weekend Warrior

    OVERALL
    RATING
    2
    VALUE
    RATING
    2
    Strength:

    Cool looking carbon, smooth shifting, stays tuned

    Weakness:

    Carbon swing arm breaks, high cost of repair/replacement

    This beauty came on the 2010 Stumpy Elite my buddy bought, and I liked the bike so much I bought one too. An XTR on a $2800 bike? Sign me up! I've loved this deraileur for the way it shifts and looks ever since. Reliability? Not so much.
    We both experienced FCF (full carbon failure) within the first year, and we both got replacements under warrantee. In my case, the carbon swing arm dove into the spokes under normal shifting. My buddy's crapped out a second time a few months later, and he just replaced it with an XT.
    I've baby'd mine ever since, never once striking it on anything, careful not to cross shift, and cleaning it after every weekly ride. Last week I noticed the little metal pin that separates the carbon plates at the bottom had come unglued on one side. I took it to my LBS who said there was nothing they could do. A new swing arm would cost $160, more than a whole new XT deraileur. Might as well ride this one until it falls apart, which it did the very next ride.
    I always assumed that when you pay top dollar for something, you are paying for piece of mind in knowing that the manufacturer tested, refined and retested it before putting it on the market. Shimano clearly didn't do that with this XTR, we are their test mules. Carbon fiber simply has no place on a deraileur.

    [Jun 17, 2014]
    motogarden
    All Mountain Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Strength:

    Light
    Pretty
    Works well when it's still in one piece

    Weakness:

    Carbon Fiber cage is a joke
    CHINA makes better CF products (sometimes)

    Both sides of the cage snapped on my 2nd ride with this thing when the derailleur hit a big root at maybe 2mph, -technical trail..
    Ridden same trail 100+ times without incident with metal shimano derailleurs.

    But the CF Shimano uses WILL shatter if you like to ride anything remotely technical and chose the wrong line. Justa matter of time.

    I'd bet even money against a Huffy drivetrain taking hits better than this.

    And I'm l life long shimano fan.

    Similar Products Used:

    STX,LX, XT,

    [Apr 04, 2013]
    Jeremy

    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Strength:

    looks cool; shifts well when dialed in

    Weakness:

    many; expensive for little benefit over cheaper options; cost prohibitive to repair

    Yeah it might shift well when dialed in and look cool while doing it, but plan to do only fire road and on-road riding. I'm not a crazy aggressive rider but enjoy single track riding. Although I don't remember doing so, I must have hit a rock which broke the knuckle (bottom) of the outside cage so the chain no longer stays on the bottom pulley wheel. Shimano wants $175 to replace 1 cage!! Crazy and stupid! A new derailleur will cost $190 on most websites. Remind me to never buy Shimano's stuff again.

    [May 10, 2012]
    mathieu asselin

    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Strength:

    Looks cool

    Weakness:

    Useless
    Breaks esaily

    Broke on the second ride, STAY AWAY from this derailleur, its light and good looking but not made to actually put on a bike. Shimano should offer an aluminum replacement part for free.

    [Dec 10, 2011]
    Taco188
    Cross Country Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    Strength:

    Crisp shifts, Light weight, Strong for intended use

    Weakness:

    None

    Crisp shifting smooth operation stylish and ultra-light weight. Used for rocky terrain, washboards, and sand. This derailleur is one tough customer. Much tougher than I thought.

    [Sep 03, 2011]
    ineffable
    Weekend Warrior

    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Strength:

    Light and shifts well with Shimano trigger shifters.

    Weakness:

    The derailleur is too flimsy for any serious mountain biking. The pivot arm is weaker than the derailleur hanger it attaches to; I had one bend without any impact (i.e., just due to load), sending the cage into the spokes. The carbon fiber cage is similarly underdesigned. Mine snapped below the bottom pulley when cleanly landing a small jump. Given that the derailleur did not hit anything during the jump--in fact, it had never been hit (the bike was new)--this is inexcusable.

    The derailleur is only suitable for a road bike or a mountain bike that spends all day on a digital scale. Get an XT or a SRAM instead.

    Similar Products Used:

    SRAM X.9, Shimano XTR

    [May 13, 2011]
    ryguy135
    Racer

    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    4
    Strength:

    Effortless shifts, 450 miles and only one minor adjustment needed due to cable stretch

    Weakness:

    None. Get this derailleur!

    Great derailleur. This is for the 2011 M-980 series med cage on a 11-36T cassette. Took ten minutes to install and get set up and only once in 450 miles has needed any adjustment. Get this derailleur. Much better feel than XO. Been banged on rocks a couple times and still never needed any work. Ain't cheap though

    Similar Products Used:

    Older XTR,

    [Dec 14, 2010]
    Arider
    Cross Country Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    Strength:

    Light weight. Reliable. Best shifting deraileur I've used.

    Weakness:

    Still falls somewhat short of totally seamless shifting - difficult to 'get it right' in all 3 chainrings with all nine cogs.

    Maybe I've been lucky, but in 18 months I haven't had any problems with the XTR Shadow deraileur. I ride 2-4 times/week all year in the Sierra's and western Nevada, much of it very rocky and rough terrain. I ride aggressively, but am a fairly 'light' rider. I've had to add protection to the underside of the frame downtube and BB, but haven't had any concerns with the rear deraileur.

    I also clean and lube the deraileur and chain after every ride.

    Similar Products Used:

    Other Shimano products

    [Sep 09, 2010]
    matsgone
    Cross Country Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Strength:

    Well.....

    Weakness:

    Broke the cage on the first ride, WITHOUT hitting anything.....its a real joke!!!

    Shimano should make a recall because everyone I talk to, has had the same disastrous experience within the first 3 rides. This is a real joke, DO NOT BUY THIS PIECE OF CRAP!!!

    [Aug 04, 2010]
    Dave
    Cross Country Rider

    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Strength:

    None So Far

    Weakness:

    Came on bike, snapped carbon cage on first ride, replaced it at cost because I worked in a shop and it really doesn't shift well. Either shifts well in higher or lower gears, but not both.

    I have never had a rear derailleur break, nor have I ever had a rear derailleur not shift perfectly with good housing. It's pretty pathetic.

    Similar Products Used:

    XT for 15 years

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