If the Crane was symbolic of Shimano’s determination to mix it with the best, the Titlist was the gear that was actually designed to do the business. The Titlist shared the same parallelogram but had steel cage plates. Mysteriously, this small change meant the price was much, much lower.
The first style of Titlist had a cast outer cable stop, just like the first style of Crane (they both use the same casting).
The Crane was exotic, expensive, and in Britain, at least, a minor seller in a market dominated by Campagnolo. In contrast, the more affordable Titlist was a runaway hit, shifting better than anything from Europe (but not as well as the SunTour V) and selling better than anything from Europe (but not as well as the SunTour V). It was fitted in quantity as original equipment on numbers of mid range bikes.
I consider it to be the ‘first ancestor’ of both Ultegra and Deore XT - which is a pretty significant position to hold in the history of the derailleur.
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