Shimano Ultegra ST-6500 Shifters

Available At:
Ultegra ST-6500

  • 9-speed SIS Shifting
  • Compatible With Double or Triple Chainrings
  • The ST-6501 is the Shimano Flight Deck Compatible Design

  • User Reviews (63)

    Showing 1-10 of 63  
    danielflood80   Recreational Rider [Apr 17, 2007]
    Strength:

    (when set up properly) - awesome shifting. Only a tiny movement required to jump from small to big chainring. Trim allows me to use the 12tooth cog in the small chainring with no rub, and something like 23tooh cog in the big chainring with no rub. Shifting is smooth and precise, although due to the fact that you can go up 3 shifter on the rear with one sweep of the lever, sometimes you accidently go up too many gears, although this applies to all the other road shifters out there too.
    As brake levers they are great, very solid and reliable. I find the hoods comfy, although some people seem to find the campy hoods better. Use whatever fits your hand best.

    Weakness:

    requires more maintenance than campy, but come on, what bike part doesn't require maintenance? If you want a "set and forget" bike, then a high end road bike isn't for you.
    Getting the trim set up can take some experimenting, although this isn't a weakness, just my lack of knowledge.
    The only serious weakness is that it's too easy to accidently go up too many gears sometimes on the rear, although this is really just a matter of getting used to it.

    I bought these second hand on ebay a year ago, and they have worked flawlessly ever since. These work great, but like any mechanical component require servicing. For some reason, cyclists seem to think shifters with all their moving parts can just keep working into infinity without proper care.

    I am writing this because I think the 9spd ultegras are fantastic shifters, and a fantastic groupset, and if you're like me, building a bike on a budget, you can get them for a great price on ebay.

    These shifters clog up with dirt quickly and easily. Twice a year, more depending on how much you ride, you need to disconnect the cables, buy a can of teflon based lube with a narrow nozzle, and thoroughly flush out the entire innards with the lube. That means every single crevice, pull the brake levers down, flush behind them etc, it's easier if you take the shifters off first. While you flush you will see dirt running out. Keep flushing until it's 100% clean. Use half a can if you have to, we're not lubing so much as cleaning. Then dry them as best you can with a clean rag. If you do this, I bet you they will never seize.

    As far as functioning, when properly maintained and set up, these are amazing. Rear shifts are spot on, only a tiny movement of the lever required to go up a gear, or you can go up 3 in a big sweep. Front shifting is incredible IF you have it set up properly. I installed these myself and spent ages getting the trim working properly, and now it works flawlessly, only the tiniest movement of the lever is required to go from the small to big chainring. If yours doesn't do this, it's not set up properly.

    I can't recomend these enough. Nowadays they are very cheap on ebay, and provided you service and set them up properly, they will perform on par with any other shifters out there.

    Similar Products Used: shimano sora
    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    5
    Available At:
    Jubal Dais   Recreational Rider [Jul 25, 2006]
    Strength:

    More precise shifting

    Weakness:

    Price

    I have a Cannondale R800 with a mix of 105 and Ultegra. I wanted to make it all Ultegra, so I upgraded from Shimano 105 shifters to Ultegra. Shifting is definitely more precise and quicker, especially with the front gear(left shifter)

    Similar Products Used: Shimano 105
    OVERALL
    RATING
    5
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    ElSupreme   Road Racer [Feb 10, 2006]
    Strength:

    Shift feel in great, espically compared to the 9speed 105 which are crap.

    Weakness:

    Blowing up feature tha requires buying new 200$ shifter combo. ^&$@%!#$%%&^%&#$%@# top caps SURE SUCK.

    Great shifting, last pair has lasted really long time. The first pair blew up for no reason. Fairly light and exelent shifting feel. Mine say DURA-ACE on top because the *^$*&%#*@^&$#%*&@# SOB top caps fall off all the f-ing time. They also have atendency to blow up for no reason. GETS 3 in value because 105 is that bad. Gets 3 in overall because the top caps are worthless and they blow up randomly (but it seems to lock you in your 25 about 40 miles from your house)

    Similar Products Used: Dura-ace, 9. 105 9. Campy Record.
    OVERALL
    RATING
    3
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    HALsaves   Recreational Rider [Oct 26, 2004]
    Strength:

    Smooth shifting while it lasts.

    Weakness:

    Low quality. Unserviceable.

    Complete garbage and unservicable to boot. The right shifter siezed after 1 year. The left shifter has now stopped working correctly after 2.5 years. I bought Campy Veloce yesterday.

    Similar Products Used: Modolo Morphos
    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Fuzznsmoo   Recreational Rider [Aug 31, 2004]
    Strength:

    Cheap and Simple

    Weakness:

    Not Rebuildable ala Campy

    My levers are still working fine after five years and 11,000 miles, but some maintenance was required. The screw under the cap had to be loctited in, and most important, the levers have to be flushed out with lube about once a year or they will seize up. I've tried Finish Line dry lube (spray), silicone spray, and Triflow spray, and the Triflow is the clear winner. I get in every nook and cranny and really try and flush the dirt and grime. If I do this once a year or so, the levers work great. But I do wish there was some way to really take these apart and clean them properly.

    Similar Products Used: Other Shimano
    OVERALL
    RATING
    4
    VALUE
    RATING
    4
    qbot   Recreational Rider [Aug 19, 2004]
    Strength:

    not as $ as DA

    Weakness:

    small screw should've had some permanent loctite applied to it, or at the very least some blue loctite. or better yet a permanent rivet, since the lever mechanism isn't serviceable anyhow. it's a throwaway item.

    received these shifters used with about 2k miles on them. noticed they were a little "sloppy" in their fit and finish and shift action. tiny screw on right side inner lever fell out, and you guessed it, the lever locked up. had to ride home in the f#$$&* rain in 1st gear for 10 miles. i will be smashing these levers with a 15 lb sledgehammer at 6 o'clock, for anyone who wants to drop by and have a beer watching this. holding the brake lever did not help downshifting. of course if i would of had my multitool hex wrench i could have manually adjusted the cable into a fixed gear, wish i would have remembered that darn multitool... well, i'm not looney or liberal enough to publicly denounce shimano ownership, so i'm getting a new set of da9's from nashbar. they still have the 7700 non-fd for $199, plus discount coupon. contrary to what some people say, i think there is a slight "feel" difference betw da and ult. da feels more solid and smooth.

    Similar Products Used: ergo 8 and 10, da9, ult9, old skook downtubes of course
    OVERALL
    RATING
    3
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    MD Jeff   Recreational Rider [Oct 13, 2003]
    Strength:

    Generally good shifting and braking. Found the hoods to be comfortable.

    Weakness:

    Terrible reliability and no repair option available.

    I have been generally happy with Ultegra performance on the years, but my second catastophic failure in less than a year has me swearing off non-repairable Shimano for all future purchases. In both cases the left (front der) shifter broke and could not be repaired. The first shifter was less than 2 years old, the second less than a year. In both cases the shifting was very good before the big "snap, crackle, and pop." Looks like it is time to try Campy.

    Similar Products Used: Pretty much been an Ultegra and Shimano 600 person for years.
    OVERALL
    RATING
    2
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    richsanque   Recreational Rider [Aug 19, 2003]
    Strength:

    Shifts well for the first year of riding.

    Weakness:

    Once their done, THEY ARE DONE!!! Pieces of sh!t!!!!!!!!!!!! They will ruin your ride when you least expect it!!!

    Worked flawlessly for almost a year...up until the little screw above the small shift lever made its way loose on the right side. I thought I could survive, but halfway thru today's ride the stupid right shifter completely froze-up. For the 189 bucks I paid, Shimano should have put more thought into their stuff.

    Similar Products Used: 105 9sp (sucks), 600 8sp & RSX 7sp (good, reliable stuff)
    OVERALL
    RATING
    1
    VALUE
    RATING
    1
    Justine   Recreational Rider [Aug 13, 2003]
    Strength:

    Provides good braking power. Never had problems with front shifts, either double or triple. (I've had both setups on this bike.) Comfortable grip. An off-the-cuff observation: I've noticed that men with small-to-medium hands--and most women--prefer the way STIs feel in their hands, while those with bigger mitts like the Campys. (I'm slightly-larger-than average for a woman.)

    Weakness:

    Wears faster than Dura-Ace. Rattle, rattle, rattle.

    New, they shifted just about as well as Dura Ace (which I use on another bike). But over time, they became sloppier, particularly in the 4th through 6th rear cogs. (I replace cables at least once a year.) And...the infamous rattle.

    Similar Products Used: Dura Ace 9-speed STI (currently on another bike), Dura Ace 8-speed STI, early Ergo, more downtube shifters than I want to remember.
    OVERALL
    RATING
    2
    VALUE
    RATING
    3
    David   Road Racer [Jun 30, 2003]
    Strength:

    Work well for first year or so

    Weakness:

    Shift quality diminishes greatly over time, shifters rattle, the finish easily scratches and looks awful

    I got these stock on my 1999 Trek 2300. The shifting at first was precise, but slowly has gotten worse with time. For the last few months the right-side lever was slow to upshift and finally stopped working all together. I expected much higher quality and durability for a product at this level.

    OVERALL
    RATING
    2
    VALUE
    RATING
    2
    Showing 1-10 of 63