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SRAM no longer owns the 12-speed market and since Shimano's release of their 12-speed XT and XTR lines, we have seen a handful of riders jumping ship. Love or hate Shimano, they do offer something different than SRAM so if it aligns with what you are looking for on your bike, it might be the way to go. This is the case with Mark. He has been switching out components from his Eagle Drivetrain with the end goal of going completely Shimano. Let's see what his thoughts are:
Do you have a DT Swiss 180, 240, 350, 440 Rear hub, and want to try the new M6100, M7100, M8100, or M9100 12-speed Shimano?? Well, you have to get this freehub to do it. It's a well-known fact that 12 speed is great than 11-speed and that mechanical Shimano is better than Sram (agree or disagree, I have ridden Sram X01 since release, and have not replaced every one of my bikes with Shimano, if you haven't tried it, you're likely missing out.) If you just bought a bike, with Sram GX, you probably can take off all those parts, put them on Pinkbike, eBay, Facebook, or local classifieds and sell them for enough money to upgrade to Shimano SLX or possibly even XT. How do I know this? Well, that's exactly what I did.
After breaking my thumb snowboarding a couple of years ago, my thumb gets sore after a couple of hours on the bike and having to shift Sram's heavy shifter up and down. Then after my XC bike came with Shimano XTR, I noticed a dramatic difference in have smooth and light the shifting is for Shimano. It takes probably half the pressure to shift up or down, which really reduces the fatigue I feel on my thumb. Since my other bike, a Yeti SB130 came with Sram GX, I needed to order a new freehub to convert it to Shimano. Luckily, DT Swiss was one of the first companies to offer an aftermarket freehub for Shimano 12-speed cassettes.
Switching out the freehub is less than a minute process. All you need to do is remove the wheel, remove the Sram or 11-speed Shimano cassette (optional, but if you don't remove the cassette now, you will have to put it back on the wheel to engage the ratchet to hold the freehub in place while you unscrew the cassette), remove the end cap with some soft pliers and just pulling straight out, once the endcap is removed the freehub will literally just pop off. Then to replace the freehub, just do the same procedure, but in reverse, make sure the springs have the wider foot facing the bearings of the hubs and freehub, and not touching the ratchets. Also, make sure you use the new MircoSpline endcap and not the endcap that was on the old freehub. Optional, if you happen to have DT Swiss' red grease, now is a great time to clean your hub and freehub and re-lubricate the bearings, springs, ratchets, and spindle.
"I love this upgrade, and so happy with how easy it was to make the switch to MicroSpline. You can see I haven’t completely replaced the Sram drivetrain. I am still waiting on the XT parts to arrive, but I had the chain and cassette, which works well with Eagle, so I made the switch, and I can already tell a difference in shifting over Sram." - Mark