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Lindarets, Wolf Tooth refine Shimano wide-range shifting

A new aftermarket product, the GoatLink 11, is supposed to improve shifting performance when running wide-range cassettes.

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Lindarets and Wolf Tooth Components have teamed up to optimize Shimano 11-speed XT and XTR derailleurs for use with SRAM XD and aftermarket extended-range cassettes. The GoatLink 11 helps clear 44t and 45t cogs while keeping the top derailleur pulley close to the cassette across the entire range for more precise shifting.

“We wanted Shimano’s ergonomics, pricing, and reliability combined with SRAM’s wide-range cassettes,” the companies explained. “What we found, however, was that while we could run XT or XTR shifters and derailleurs with a SRAM 10-42t cassette without modification, performance fell short of what we’d come to expect from each company’s flagship products.”

Compatible with M8000 XT and M9000 XTR, GoatLink 11 works by re-positioning the rear derailleur so that free chain, the primary driver of shifting performance, is within one percent of what Shimano intended while engagement is improved by 27 percent, according to the companies.

For situations that call for a range beyond that provided by 10-42t or 11-42t cassettes, GoatLink 11 claims to improve Shimano 11-speed rear derailleur performance with extended-range 10-44t and 11-45t cassettes.

While GoatLink 11 is only compatible with a single chainring setup, Lindarets and Wolf Tooth are currently testing M8000 SGS (long-cage) rear derailleurs with double chainring systems.

GoatLink 11s are available now from Lindarets and Wolf Tooth Components online stores for $28, and will be available through distributors and shops shortly.