DISRAELI GEARS

Shimano Crane GS (DR102)

Shimano Crane GS derailleur (DR-102) 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 example of the Crane GS is a well-used, early, version, with the outer cable stop part of the casting of the rear knuckle.

Some of its key features are:

  • An fixed cable stop.
  • Main Allen bolts with large, flat, heads with no wrtiting on them.
  • An aluminium, domed, cable clamp nut.
  • Plastic pulley wheels with 10 teeth and bronze, metal on metal, bearings. These are labelled 'SHIMANO' and '333'.
  • An outer pulley cage plate with round holes and a square punched rotation stop.


  • Derailleur brands: Shimano
  • Categories: Shimano - the Dura-Ace story
  • Country: Japan
  • Date of introduction: 1971
  • Date of this example: unknown (no two letter date code, and has ‘333’ marking on pulleys)
  • Model no.: DR102 and sometimes D510!
  • Weight: 238g
  • Maximum cog: 34 teeth (Sutherland’s 4th edition)
  • Total capacity: 34 teeth (Sutherland’s 4th edition)
  • Pulley centre to centre: 75mm
  • Index compatibility: friction
  • Chain width: 3/32”
  • Logic: top normal
  • B pivot: sprung
  • P pivot: sprung
  • Materials: aluminium (including the cable clamp nut!)

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Shimano exploded views - Crane

Shimano exploded views - Crane

  • Publisher: Shimano
  • Date:
  • Derailleur brands: Shimano
  • Derailleurs: too many to list here
Shimano Bicycle Parts Catalog - 1973 page 22 thumbnail