DISRAELI GEARS

Shimano Crane (DB100 2nd style)

Shimano Crane (DB100 2nd style) derailleur main image

With the Crane, Shimano pulled out all the stops in an attempt to make a truly world-class derailleur. It was an all aluminium design with a dropped parallelogram - a world first. The finish was excellent with that anodised ‘glow’ that Campagnolo had perfected. The chromed parts were bright and polished. The pulleys had a two part bushing system so that bronze rotated on bronze. Even the springs seemed to have less of a tendency to lose their tension. All very classy.

Shimano were not backward in coming forward with the price - which set new records for a Japanese derailleur (even if it was still someway from Campagnolo’s extravagant pricing).

The only fly in the ointment was SunTour’s patent on the slant parallelogram. The Crane never changed gear quite as well as the much more lowly SunTour V series - despite Shimano’s puff about the efficacy of their ‘servo pantagraph’ design with its two sprung pivots.


This is a very pleasant example of the fourth generation of Crane with Dura-Ace-(7100)-style hollow Allen bolts with plastic seals at the two main pivots. The all-up weight of this example is an impressive 203g.

Some of its key features are:

  • An adjustable cable stop.
  • Hollow main Allen bolts with branded heads and serious plastic seals.
  • A steel, non-domed (is that a word?), cable clamp nut.
  • Plastic pulley wheels with 10 teeth and bronze, metal on metal, bearings. These are labelled 'SHIMANO' and with the 'S in an oval' symbol.
  • An outer pulley cage plate with a screw-in rotation stop.


  • Derailleur brands: Shimano
  • Categories: Shimano - the Dura-Ace story
  • Country: Japan
  • Date of introduction: 1977?
  • Date of this example: 1977 (two letter date code BK)
  • Model no.: DB100
  • Weight: 203g
  • Maximum cog: 28 teeth (Sutherland’s 4th edition)
  • Total capacity: 28 teeth (Sutherland’s 4th edition)
  • Pulley centre to centre: 46mm
  • Index compatibility: friction
  • Chain width: 3/32”
  • Logic: top normal
  • B pivot: sprung
  • P pivot: sprung
  • Materials: aluminium, with steel pulley wheels
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