SRAM‘s X.0 rear derailleur went through a redesign for 2008. The most visual of these changes is the new 20th anniversary gold accenting on the mounting bolt and graphics. What you will also see is a new 6061 aluminum backing to the carbon Blackbox cage.
From the SRAM website:
SRAM X.0 Rear Derailleur
- New CNC’d 100% Carbon Outer Cage
- New 6061 Forged Aluminum Inner Cage
- 20th Anniversary 7075 Aluminum B-bolt and Graphics
- Titanium Main Spring
- Outside Facing Limit Screws – Intuitive Adjustment
- Sealed Bearings
- Di.R.T: Direct Route Technology™
- 1:1 Actuation Ratio™ Superior Shift Quality
- Weight: Short 192g / Medium 197g / Long 203g
SRAM’s 1:1 shifting ratio makes them the easiest set up on the market. It also gives them a little bit more room for error and cable stretch than the Shimano line. I used to be a hardcore XTR zealot, but after using X.0…I can say I will probably never to back to Shimano shifting. It just requires too much tinkering to get it perfect, and then the slightest hit and it is out of wack again.
Some of you may be wondering why SRAM decided to go with the alloy backing for ’08. I, for one, am not surprised. Why am I not surprised?? Here is picture of my last X.0 rear derailleur.
Luckily I had a spare in the parts bin off another build, but as you can see…the alloy backing is a must on a high stress area like the cage. For a long time, I had zero issues and I was actually one of the one’s that said it would never happen to me. Similar situations had already happened to many of the guys that I ride with.
Would this cause me to change companies…no. They still offer the best shifting in the business, but there is a little well known secret that doesn’t get published too often. The X.9 rear derailleur is almost exactly the same as the X.0 and it shifts just as well. If someone covered up the RD so you couldn’t see it…you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference on the trail. The only thing the X.9 lacks that the X.0 has is the “bling factor” that many people look for in their builds. The great news is the X.9 comes in at almost a 1/3 of the cost of a new X.0.
As you can imagine…any of my future RD purchases are going to be X.9′s.