How To Upgrade a Groupset without Spending a Fortune

If you cant quite splash out on the new shimano 9100 dura ace groupset or the new Sram eTap groupset just yet, then follow our ways that we’ve come up with so you can upgrade a groupset for less!

We all love to get better, lighter and faster parts for our bikes, but sometimes we just can’t afford to splash out. So you want to upgrade your groupset, but can’t afford the whole shebang. Have you thought of just replacing some key parts to make that big difference? Replacing some parts on a groupset can really make a difference to shifting, weight and performance. But if you don’t what to rip the whole thing off your bike and start all over again then here are some top tips on how to get the most for your money.

Top Tips on how to Upgrade a Groupset:

  1. Chainset

    These are probably the first thing you would look to upgrade. So for instance is you are running a 105 Groupset you can always upgrade to a Ultegra crankset. They are much lighter, so can save quite a bit of weight. You can keep your existing 105 levers and even chain and cassette if you like. But just remember that if your chain and cassette are very old and are wearing out, by putting a new chainsets on it may not run 100% right. This is simply because mixing old with new tends to cause chain suck or slipping.

    Chain wear and indicator tools are helpful in knowing if you are on the way out.

  2. Cassette

    The second most biggest change you can make is changing the cassette as again this is quite a heavy component so a lot of weight can be saved by upgrading to an ultegra or dura-ace cassette. weghts are typically around 232g for an 11-25g ultegra  320 g for an 11 speed 105 cassette. Not only will this save weight it will provide you with much smoother and efficient shifting. This naturally helps with overall performance. Who said all performance enhancing tricks are illegal!

  3. Cables

    Now this is probably not one you would naturally think of changing. But by replacing the standard cables with some nice Vel cables this can help significantly with smoother and much more seamless shifting that will also last longer. Especially during the winter months when grit and dirt find their way into system.

    These Vel cables feature a pre-stretched, extra smooth stainless steel inner cable coupled with a lined outer, the result is a low friction, smooth braking cable.

  4. Mix and Match

    You may be questioning weather you can mix and match parts like this but the answer is yes. Providing you are ensuring that you replace 10 speed with 10 speed. Or 11 speed with 11 speed.

    Similar goes for the chainset. You have to ensure the bottom bracket or spindle is compatible. English tread with English bottom bracket. You are unable to mix Italian with English.

So instead of spending thousands of pounds on a new groupset you have nice upgrade for under £500 pounds.

Writer and expert