SRAM Red 10 speed rear derailleur breaking, any experiences?

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.

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by josephtroppo

Update: Sent in, great service, replaced, I'm back on my Cervelo. Two thumbs up for SRAM!

Hi guys,

Would like to ask you for some expertise and suggestions.
I've become quite a fan of SRAM Red, mostly performance wise and of course being a weight weenie the grams count as well.
However I've seen 3 rear derailleurs breaking at exact the same point now, so wondering if that is a problem.

1. My Ridley X-Night CX bike, 10 speed red rear derailleur broken during touring during a simple shifting maneuver. Nothing like climbing/intervals etc. Middle of rear cassette.

2. Cannondale SuperSix, last 10 speed version Red (limited green) rear derailleur broken during training. No hing intensity cycling here either.

3. Last saturday, Cervelo S3, 10 speed Red rear derailleur broken during descent, middle of rear cassette, shifting toward 14.

Two bikes have been maintained by the same mechanic, the third by a different one.

The strange thing is all derailleurs broke at the same point. Please refer to the attached picture from last saturday.

Have mailed SRAM directly with the same question, at the first two I thought "derailleurs break, all in the game".
However with the third in mind I'm considering either a technical failure from my mechanic or from SRAM.

So before spending another 250 on a new would I'm wondering if you guys have any suggestions.

Last edited by josephtroppo on Tue Dec 01, 2015 12:49 pm, edited 2 times in total.


by Krull

Sorry, no expertise, just info: my red-derailleur, ca 5 years old, broke at the same point like yours.
Last edited by Krull on Mon Sep 14, 2015 11:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

by Weenie

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by CerveloBert

Quite disconcerting considering you've been through three of them breaking at the same point, and it's not like even 1600+ watts on a sprint should be making them break like that. Looks like manufacturer at this point. Makes me glad I made the move to DA9000.

The picture shows the derailleur breaking at the upper jockey spindle joint, please correct me if I'm wrong.

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by xena

I broke one like that 2 years ago. It was a weight weenie , under 100 grms ,but it was on my bike for nearly 3 years.
My friend had a Record rear mech go in the same place , it ripped into his wheel and chipped the paint on his custom Viner.
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Frankie - B
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by Frankie - B

This is a known failure of sram red mechs. The friendly folks over at sram DSD might even swap it out for you. Before the mech breaks, the shifting isn't as crisp as sram used to be. that is a tell tale sign.
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by josephtroppo

Frankie-B, thank you very much for your answer! Couldn't find many similar problems.
The shifting started to worsen lately in fact, that explains things.

Have contacted SRAM DSD Benelux directly, let's see how they respond..

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by Thirstyman

i had two in 18 months go that way. warranty coverage for both. still. when I went 11 speed, I went Shimano.

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by josephtroppo

Short update to keep you guys informed;

The DSD Department of SRAM has kindly reached out and requested me to send the derailleur in.
They want to analyze it to see if they can find out the reason for the failure.

I'll keep you posted.

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by flafonta

Happened to mine too. I noticed you have Oval rings, which I do as well. I think the oval rings add wear to that pivots, as it moves a bit with every crank rotation.
SRAM replaced the derailleur for free. But my frame and Zipp wheel took a beating.
Edit: Sorry, bad vision, you don't appear to have oval rings...

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by racingtiger

I went through three SRAM Red RDs this year. They all broke at that exact same point.


I'm 129 lbs! How's that for light!

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by jooo

Thirstyman wrote:...when I went 11 speed, I went Shimano.

So you could get shifter cables and cassettes warrantied instead? :lol:

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by pingpong


2012 version.

Took just over two years. Warranty Denied.

It was clearly failing (sloppy shifting) before the two years were up.

Now that I know the weak link, I'll look out for it next time. Next time will probably be Force or Rival, $175 a year for a rear derailleur is a bit steep.

Not going to go through the trouble of posting a picture, but part of the hat brim on top of the pulley cage spindle breaks off, and a notch wears out on the screw-pin that retains the pulley cage spindle.

Presto, two piece derailleur. And you have to figure out how to get home.


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by Ivan

I bought SRAM Red in 2011. Rear derailleur broke after a bit more as a year and I went with Force because a new Red was too expensive for me. That rear derailleur is still going strong. Every now and then I see broken Red derailleurs (on internet and in real) and can't help of thinking how much money and training I would have lost if I would have sticked to Red.
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by sanrensho

Well, I guess I'm abandoning any plans of upgrading my Force derailleur to Red.

I'm also seeing a lot of reports of broken Red derailleurs on a Facebook group I belong to. Seems like every couple of days someone is posting looking for a Red derailleur.

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by josephtroppo

Hi guys,

just a quick update from my part; have spoken to one of the representatives of SRAM Benelux.
He offered me to send the derailleur in and have them examine it.

Can only say they have been great thus far, very available to explain their production and warranty process etc.

For some of the negative comments; please keep in mind: when I ask for people who have had a similar problem, only they respond, the thousands of people without problems won't.

by Weenie

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