Best Rear Derailleurs for Mountain Bikes

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Mountain Bike Rear Derailleur

Don’t you just hate it when your rear derailleur gives out and needs to be replaced? Fortunately, this is an easy fix – all you need is a replacement part, and you’ll be back on the road again in next to no time flat. The only hard part of the process is choosing which one you will get next. We’ve made it much simpler for you by checking out hundreds of reviews and selecting our top three picks.

MTB Rear Derailleur Buying Guide

1.It is best to keep the shifter and derailleur parts from the same brand to ensure they operate correctly.

2.Make sure you get the right derailleur according to the number of gears you have. Sounds obvious, but many buyers forget this when bogged down in -the selection process. Look at your cassette and count the cogs to make sure.

MTB Rear Derailleurs 101 - Adjustment, Troubleshooting & Knowledge

 

3.Make sure you buy the correct cage length, use this guide.

4.Prices will vary greatly depending on the quality of the components used, always buy the best within your price range.

Sram 10 speed GX Type 2.1 Read Derailleur 

Spram 10 speed GX Type 2.1 Read DerailleurAn affordable yet reliable mountain bike rear derailleur, the 10-speed GX SRAM 2.1 is the perfect option for a stable, smooth mountain bike ride!

Leveraging SRAM’S legendary shifting history, the GX 10-Speed derailleur affords incredible shifting precision and speed. Moreover, with its unique Exact Actuation technology, it can effectively help stabilize/simplify the edgy act of balancing precise cable extension, tight cog spacing, and rear derailleur hanger design.

This derailleur is available in long, medium, and short models and features a distinct 2.1 Roller Bearing Clutch technology to guarantee utmost drive train stability-even through severely punishing terrains. Furthermore, this derailleur is designed to operate with 10-speed MTB SRAM shifters as well as a distinct 2x chainring system.

Lastly, by applying a 1:1 cable pull ration combined with its remarkable clutch technology, this SRAM rear derailleur will guarantee you a precise and crisp gear change.

Pros

· Compatible with multiple gears
· Swift and precise shifting.
· Improved chain engagement.
· Minimizes shifting force.

Cons

· Questionable Durability
· Heavy
· Fragile

 

Best Rear Derailleurs for Mountain Bikes 1

 

 

Sram X5 9 Speed Rear Derailleur

SRAM X5 rear derailleurWithout a doubt, the 9-speed SRAM X5 rear derailleur is the ultimate option for precise and flawless shifting on all trails. Besides being compatible with 9-speed bikes, it also facilitates faster gear shifting, subsequently allowing you to focus on the trail ahead. Even better, this rear derailleur is easy to install and adjust even for novices, and since it requires minimal time to mount, it is no problem even to beginners.

Essentially, the X5 9-speed SRAM derailleur is not only affordable but also noticeably faster compared to other available options. What’s more, with its light shifting capacity, you enjoy a smooth ride across the terrain. It is an amazingly affordable yet remarkable upgrade.

 

 

 


Pros

·Budget-friendly
·Lightweight
·Durable design.
·Easy to adjust and mount
·Faster shifting.

Cons

· A thin cage that can easily bend

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Sram X01 Eagle 12 Speed Rear Derailleur 

SRAM X01 Rear DerailleurIf you are looking to push your way over the rather unmerciful grades smoothly, then the Eagle SRAM X01 is your best bet. In fact, with its substantial gear range across 12 cogs, your tank will still have something once you reach the top.

This 12-Speed SRAM X01 Rear Derailleur effectively binds the system together and drives accurate gear changes across the whole cassette with a resilient, forged aluminum build and titanium spring. Like with the 11-speed SRAM offerings, this derailleur is ideally designed to afford a clean-shifting, budget-friendly ride experience.

It comes with an updated Roller Bearing Clutch comprising a larger lower pulley and repositioned upper pulley to adequately hold the extra chain length-necessary to operate the significant number of clogs properly. What’s more, paired with the Exact Actuation technology, it manages chain tension effectively to eradicate chain slap and derailleur bounce for a noise-free and stable ride.

The Eagle X01 also boasts an exclusive X-Horizon feature that further enhances this stability by efficiently limiting the shifting movement of the derailleur across the horizontal axis complimented by its huge upper pulley design ensuring the maintenance of a steady chain gap across the cassette. This way, it efficiently cuts down shift initiation force as well as eradicates irritating ghost shifting, meaning you only need minimal effort to drop into the right gear. How about that?

SRAM Eagle X01 vs Eagle GX Derailleur - Worthy Upgrade?

 

Pros:

Clean shifting action
Reinforced clutch technology
Almost eradicates chain bounce entirely

Cons:

· Expensive

 

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SRAM X4 8-Speed Rear Derailleur

SRAM X4 Rear Derailleur - 7,8,9 Speed, Long Cage, Black
243 Reviews
SRAM X4 Rear Derailleur - 7,8,9 Speed, Long Cage, Black
  • Compatible with 7-, 8-, and 9-speed systems
  • 1:1 shifter-to-derailleur actuation ratio for precise light-action indexing
  • Largest Cog: 34
  • Chain Wrap Capacity: 45
  • Cage Length: Long

This product has been designed to take advantage of the best elements in SRAM design and shifting, with an eye on keeping the price affordable.
Features
• Compatible with 7- or 8- speed systems.
• Easier shifting through the use of Direct Route Technology
• An exact 1:1 Actuation ratio

Many people said that they would be SRAM clients for life after trying this.
This is not compatible with Shimano shifters, but that is a very easy fix – you just need to get new shifters. It’s an investment but a worthwhile one.


Pros
• Excellent price point
• Well made
• Easy to install

Cons
• Not compatible with a Shimano shifter.

Shimano Rear Derailleur RD-TX35 by Tourney

SRAM X4 Rear Derailleur - 7,8,9 Speed, Long Cage, Black
243 Reviews
SRAM X4 Rear Derailleur - 7,8,9 Speed, Long Cage, Black
  • Compatible with 7-, 8-, and 9-speed systems
  • 1:1 shifter-to-derailleur actuation ratio for precise light-action indexing
  • Largest Cog: 34
  • Chain Wrap Capacity: 45
  • Cage Length: Long

This is a lower end model and very basic. You have two choices, the 6/7 speed with claw mounting or the SGS option with regular mounting.
Features
• It is compatible with 6- or 7-speed systems.
• Excellent price point
Many users were surprised how durable this is because it is so inexpensive.
You do need to take care to choose the right model for your bike when ordering because they are not interchangeable.


Pros
• Works well
• Excellent price point
• Durable

Cons
• The description for the models is a little confusing
• Installation is not as easy as with the other options

Shimano Acera RD-410 Mountain Bike Rear Derailleur

Shimano Acera M360 7 and 8-Speed Rear Derailleur with SmartCage, Black
236 Reviews
Shimano Acera M360 7 and 8-Speed Rear Derailleur with SmartCage, Black
  • Shimano Acera M360 7
  • 8-Speed Rear Derailleur with SmartCage, Black

This one provides a blend of style and excellent performance.
Features
• Gear changes are made easier by the Advanced Light Action Design
• The link pivot bushings are low friction
• SGS cage design
• Compatible with 8-speed systems

Many users said that they felt this performed really well. Some even commented that the look and feel were more like that of a much higher-priced model.

It would be better if It were compatible with more models. However, if you have an 8-speed bike, this is not really too much of an issue.


Pros
• Easy to install
• Good value for money
• Works well

Cons
• Only compatible with an 8-speed bike

All in all, it just goes to show that you don’t have to spend a fortune to get better performance from your bike. The products reviewed here will all make shifting gears easy and can be installed at home. They make an excellent alternative to the much more expensive models.

 

Image sources: Amazon.com, Bikerumor.com