Shimano Shifter With SRAM Derailleur: Does It Even Work!

There is nothing more satisfying than experimenting with your bike right! But some experiments can harm your bike riding experience. 

That’s why I am here to make your ride a more enjoyable combination for you. 

But the question is, can you use shimano shifter with sram derailleur?

Generally, you can use different shifter and derailleur models without any hesitation. Only if they are produced by an indifferent company. As Shimano and SRAM are different companies, there can be some problems. But if the speed ratio is similar or nearer, then it can be adjusted very easily.

For that reason, we’ve found some amazing Shimano and SRAM combinations for you. And also explain how to adjust your shifter with the derailleur. 

So, we hope when you finish this article you’ll get a transparent idea of how to make it work.

Let’s dig in! 

Shimano Shifter with SRAM Derailleur: Is This Combination Possible?

Yes, it is possible to combine Shimano shifters and SRAM derailleurs. But their speed ratio should be the same or close. If it’s the same then generally there is no need for adjustments. 

But if the speed ratio is close then there might need some adjustments for smooth gear shifting.

For your convenience, we’ve prepared a chart with the best Shimano and SRAM combinations. 

So, are you still confused with which one to get? 

Then read through the next segment. We have deeply discussed the best 3 combinations. Which will be helpful to lessen the hesitation. 

Shimano Shifter with SRAM Derailleur 

Let us tell you an honest confession first. There are basically mixed reactions about this combo. And there is valid evidence of their perspective.

But we are here to make things comfortable for you. We are going to put both pros and cons on the table. And help you to find the best shifter and the best derailleur combination for you. 

All of us know that Shimano and SRAM are two of the best companies for bicycle parts. But the question is are their different parts going well together!

Because sometimes it is seen that different parts of different companies go really well together.  Then again, sometimes those don’t match and create problems while biking.

There are many users who claim that those work pretty well together. But there are users who don’t get satisfied. The major cause is that every model won’t go together.

We know that Shimano and SRAM are two different companies. So the ratio of shift activation and the cable pull may not be the same. And that creates problems when changing the gear.

You can also face problems if you use an 11-speed derailleur with 9-speed shifters

But there should be solutions to all the problems right! And we have found the perfect solution for you. 

The solution is to find the perfect combination. There are many different shifters from Shimano. Then again there are different derailleurs from SRAM as well. 

All you gotta do is to match perfect models for each other. We have found some perfect sram shimano compatibility charts for you. 

So let’s find out if sram shimano compatibility mtb really works or not!

Shimano XTR Shifter with SRAM GX Derailleur 

Shimano XTR Shifters and SRAM GX Derailleurs are really popular on their own. But the question is are they good together? 

We have done lots of research and found that a maximum of the users is satisfied. They claimed these two go really well together.  Because both of them have an equal speed ratio, which is 12.  

Shimano Shifter With SRAM Derailleur: Does It Even Work!

Source: Kustom Bike

But the main concern should be the adjustment. Other than that there will be problems while shifting the gear.

Shimano M8000 Shifter with SRAM GX Derailleur 

As we have already mentioned there are some mixed reactions. So, there are some reviews where people showed they don’t go well together. 

Then again many people think that they can be a good match.

For your information, Shimano M8000 Shifter is an 11-speed system. SRAM GX Derailleur is a 12 speed system. So, there is of course a combination gap.

But the thing is they can go well together if it is adjusted well. Because for a smooth ride the shifter and the derailleur must work smoothly. 

Otherwise, you can face issues while the chain runs through the cassette.

However, here are two of the best GX eagle derailleurs-

This issue can be faced if you use a sram 11-speed derailleur with shimano shifter.

And again there are no worries about this as well. Because we are here to describe the easiest way to adjust the shifter and derailleur.

How to Install and Adjust a Shifter to the Derailleur?

The process of installing and adjusting the shifter is pretty easy. You just have to get a screwdriver. That’s all you need.

I can suggest to you some of the screwdrivers that I find pretty easy to use. 

Do you know besides this adjustment problem there is another problem that can bother you? Sometimes you will get di2 rear derailleur not shifting but that’s not a big deal after all.

So let’s focus on shifter and derailleur adjustment. 

Step 01: Screw up your shifter to the handle in your comfortable position.

Step 02: Trim the cable housing to the proper length. 

Step 03: Thrust the inner cable throughout the housing. 

Step 04: Route it properly into the derailleur. 

Step 05: Adjust the limit screw and the b-gap adjustment.

Step 06: Give it a dry run to make sure there is no problem.

Step 07: Hope there won’t be any problem. If there is then adjust the barrel as per requirement. 

And you are just good to go.  There must not be any problems if you can adjust those properly. That will be the same if you combine a sram gear shifter with shimano rear derailleur.  

You can hold other models like SHIMANO SL-M640 Zee 10 Speed Shifter and SRAM derailleurs. But you need to consider the speed ratio first. Because that makes the main difference. 

So, before getting the shifters or derailleurs must check the speed ratio. If the speed ratio is not that different then there shouldn’t be any problem. Because it can be adjustable.

Besides the shifter adjustment, you should also look into the perfect cassette installation. Because that can make a big difference. 


Can I use any shifter with a Shimano derailleur?

Yes, you can use any shifter with a Shimano derailleur if the speed ratio is 8 or 9. Road kit and mountain bike derailleurs are inter-compatible. Because the cable pull ratio of both of them is the same. So you can easily use a road shifter with a mountain bike derailleur or vice versa.  

Can you combine different shifters and derailleurs?

In most cases, you can mix shifters and derailleurs. If these are from the same brands then there will be less confusion. But the question arises when they are from different brands. Then you need to adjust the speed ratio to get a better biking experience.

Can I mix Shimano shifters with SRAM derailleurs?

There is a different opinion on this which we have already covered in our article. As they are different brands so there can be some speed ratio gap between them.  But if you find those in a similar speed ratio then it can work pretty well. Then again if there are more issues you must try to adjust the ratio for better performance. 


The endnote is that a shimano shifter with sram derailleur can be a good combination. But you need to be sure about the similarity in speed ratio. Otherwise, they don’t match well. 

If the ratio gap is high then it can be a problem. As they are from different companies that’s why there can be issues. But if the ratio gap is less then it can be adjusted.

Till then stay safe and enjoy your ride.  

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