Shimano 3.3.3.

Shimano 3.3.3. derailleur main image

The legend goes that Shimano produced a ‘racing’ pull-chain derailleur called the ‘3.3.3.’ in 1956 and a ‘touring’ pull-chain derailleur called the ‘Champion Speed’ in 1957.

My guess is that this is the 3.3.3.. The pulley cage, sliding rod and spring assembly are the same as on my other Shimano pull-chain derailleur - the difference is the drop-out mounting. In general I consider it to be a copy of a Cyclo design, with one sprung pivot and one unsprung pivot.

This is a competently manufactured component but does not have the class of either the Sanko or the SunTour pull-chain derailleurs. Shimano’s real interest clearly lay elsewhere - with their 1958 ‘3.3.3.’ three speed hub gear.

  • Derailleur brands: Shimano
  • Categories: Shimano - pull-chain models
  • Country: Japan
  • Date of introduction: 1956
  • Date of this example: 1957 (it is stamped 32.7, in the Japanese Emperor Year (Wareki) system the 32nd year of the reign of Emperor Hirohito (Showa 32) was 1957)
  • Model no.: unknown
  • Weight: 233g excluding missing volute spring, pulley spindle nut, hanger plate and hanger bolt
  • Maximum cog: 26 teeth?
  • Total capacity: 16 teeth?
  • Pulley centre to centre: 56mm
  • Index compatibility: friction
  • Chain width: 1/8”?
  • Logic: low normal
  • B pivot: unsprung
  • P pivot: sprung
  • Materials: steel