This is a new-old-stock (NOS) Shimano 105 front derailleur from the very early 90's (model FD-1055). Some of it's more prominent design features include...
Capacity: double chainring with 14T (max) difference (shop catalog specs)
Compatibility: marketed as road bike model during the 7-speed cassette/freewheel era (although see notes that follow for other drivetrain possibilities)
Mounting bracket: braze-on...so please make sure the intended frame has the mounting bracket on the seat tube to accomodate this mouting type
Cable pull: bottom (so cable routing must enter from below the unit)
Design: conventional/bottom swing
Weight: 100 grams (per our digital postal scale)
Our Shimano catalogs indicate the 105 groupset in the early 90's was marketed primarily as a seven-speed drivetrain with 126 mm (locknut-to-locknut) spacing. These specs indicate this front derailleur was considered narrow chain compatible, as defined for this period (as the seven speed drivetrain with a 126 mm freehub typically required a narrower chain). Please do keep in mind, however, when we speak of narrower chains from this era, this is relative to the wider chains historically used on regular spaced six speed drivetrains with 126 mm spacing and/or regular spaced five speed drivetrains with 120 mm spacing. Today's nine and ten speed compatible chains are even narrower then those that were typically used on these seven speed drivetrains.
Having said the above, we also compared this model FD-1055 front derailleur to it's predecessor FD-1050 (the latter of which was marketed in the late 80's primarily with a six speed drivetrain...so effectively compatible with a wider chain). We compared these two units...and specifically the derailleur cages (or chain guides), because we wanted to assess any differences in their width and/or design. After making such comparisions and taking some caliper measurements, it's actually fairly difficult to make any significant distinctions between the two cages...and the inside width of each cage appears similar. As a result, the derailleur cage (or chain guide) on this model FD-1055 should be wide enough to handle most of the wider chains found on vintage road bikes. The widest of these chains (8.0 mm or wider) may still present some chain rub problems, but we see very few of these extremely wide chains in today's market...so this will probably not be an issue when considering one of these front derailleurs for a vintage drivetrain.
In terms of condition, all of these front derailleurs are new-in-the-box...so their condition is very nice.
General note regarding narrower/wider front derailleur cages (chain guides) and chains...
We do not see many good quality clamp-on front derailleurs with these slightly wider cages, which are typically more effective at shifting the wider chains desired on some vintage road bikes. Narrow chains may also be used with these vintage setups, but because they are typically more expensive and usually not as durable (because they are made with thinner/lighter component pieces)...they are probably not the best alternative for a vintage road bike. Wider chains are usually a better option, because they are made with thicker/heavier component pieces that will generally hold up better over a longer period (so more miles between replacements). The problem is that most of today's front derailleurs are built with cages to accomodate extremely narrow chains (for 9 and 10-speed shifting), which means they might not work as well on a vintage road bike when a wider chain is preferred (for the reasons noted above). In many cases, it's still possible to get the newer front derailleurs to function...but with a narrower cage and a wider chain, it would appear the limit screw adjustments have to be near perfect to eliminate chain rub (so little margin for error here...and hence the reason the slightly wider cage on these older front derailleurs is a nice feature).
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Note to international customers regarding shipping...
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Note to international customers regarding customs...
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