Twist grip gear shift

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Skibiker, Jul 26, 2010.

  1. Skibiker

    Skibiker New Member

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    Hi all,
    I recently bought my wife a second hand mountain bike with twist grip gear changes, she loves the bike but hates the gear changes, she say's they are too stiff and make her wrist's ache. I went to a local bike shop to see how much it would cost to have them changed to something more suitable for her, but they said they cannot be changed? Surely this cannot be correct, can anyone advise?
     
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  2. Scotty_Dog

    Scotty_Dog New Member

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    Of course the shifters can be replaced, or maybe just cleaned and adjusted. I would go to a different bike shop. If you told us more about your wife's bike and the drivetrain components, we might be able to give you more detailed suggestions.
     
  3. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    As noted, the shifters can be replaced.

    In the worst case scenario, you would need to buy some Shimano Deore-or-better derailleurs if the current derailleurs on the bike are not compatible with the numerous Shimano shifters which you can choose from; but, it is my impression that the GripShift were Shimano 7-and/or-8-speed derailleur compatible.
     
  4. Skibiker

    Skibiker New Member

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    Many thanks guys,
    Not sure what make the gears are on this machine as it's at our caravan so I will check at the weekend, but the front chain set has 3 cogs and the rear has 6. The bike is an ATB with front and rear suspension.
    Regards.
     
  5. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    Oh ... I reckon the individual at the bike shop probably meant that the shifters couldn't be changed for a reasonable amount of money relative to the value of the bike -- s/he probably figured that s/he would have to charge you about £100+ to change the shifters and/or derailleurs.

    As I've said elsewhere, if you are a wise shopper, then whatever components you were to buy for the bike could be transferred to a future bike ...

    BUT, presuming that you (also) have a MTB/Hybrid/Flat-Bar bike which has trigger shifters, then an option to consider would be to move the components from your bike to hers AND possibly buy slightly better, replacement components for your bike (unless you already have XT-or-XTR components on your bike) ... but, Shimano's 'plain' DEORE is pretty good & not too expensive (at least, via eBay -- figure £20+ ... much more from a bike shop).

    If moving your shifters to your wife's bike sounds like a viable option, then the first thing you would want to do is to see if your shifters could be used with her derailleurs ... if so, then you would only need to buy new shifters for your bike.

    Heck, now that I think about it, I don't know why you couldn't just put a pair of 'plain' DEORE shifters directly onto her bike!

    If you get 8-speed shifters, then it should be a direct connection ... if you get 9-speed shifters (or, if that's what you have on your bike), then you will probably need to replace the rear derailleur on her bike ...

    What kind of shifters are currently on your bike & how many cogs are on your bike's rear wheel?

    BTW, I presume you are moderately handy and can DIY.
     
  6. Skibiker

    Skibiker New Member

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    Hello and thanks,
    Actually my bike also has Griptwist gear change (18 gears) which are not much better than my wifes so no point in swapping them over on to her bike, I used to build my own bikes as a kid so I know my way around them. The bikes are low budget types for occasional weekend use at our cravan, so maybe its a case of you get what you pay for, I've put some oil down the cables to see if that's the problem but it has had no effect, it actually feels like the return springs are too strong I'm starting to think that from a cost point of view it may be best for my wife to leave them be and get used to it.
    Regards Skibiker.
     
  7. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    FWIW. IMO, your wife doesn't "have to get used to it" ... and, you can be (more of) a hero to your wife if the following makes sense to you ...

    Presuming the shifters are functioning properly, the solution, IMO, is relatively simple ...

    I previously suggested (which I think fell on deaf ears because of the inability of the individual to understand OR he thought it was too clunky a solution OR the solution was implemented and he never let the Forum know) that a GripShift could be made much easier to use by simply increasing the diameter of the shifter ... that is, ease-or-difficulty of use is a matter of leverage, or lack of.

    How large?

    Well, a plastic tumbler is certainly larger in diameter than most people can close their hand around, yet we can all grip it, so the diameter of the grip part of the shifter can be significantly larger than the whatever it is (~3cm?). And so, regardless of your how large your wife's hands are, you can significantly increase the diameter of the grip ...

    What to use:
    Now, previously, I suggested that the other person simply try using some water pipe insulating foam to increase the diameter of the grip ... tub-and-tile caulk may be necessary to prevent slippage.

    But, I might opt for something a which is physically more robust ... and, I might make a donut from wood ... flute/knurl/whatever as desired ... I would then use a slot cut (against the grain!) into the donut + a bolt to compress & secure the donut on the shifter (with-or-without a bead of caulk).
    Hope that makes sense to you.
     
  8. Skibiker

    Skibiker New Member

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    Many thanks, good idea and it does make sense.
    I was actually thinking of taking it one step further, by welding or brazing a 2"or so piece of metal rod to a large hose clip which could then be tightened round the twist grip thus giving a kind of mini gear stick, what do you think?
    Regards Skibiker.
     
  9. alfeng

    alfeng Well-Known Member

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    That could work, too ...

    BTW. You'll probably want to remove the rubber sleeve on the GripShift & substitute a scrap piece from an inner tube as the collar onto which the clamp is attached.
     
  10. Skibiker

    Skibiker New Member

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    Many thanks will look at that.
    Regards Skibiker.
     
  11. Yojimbo_

    Yojimbo_ Active Member

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    I don't really understand why your wife is having a problem. I have Grip Shifters on my commuting bike and they work great - I wouldn't change them for anything - especially those thumb shifter thingies.

    What problems is she having exactly?
     
  12. Skibiker

    Skibiker New Member

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    The problem applies to both our bikes really but more so with my wifes bike. The problem is that when trying to change gear the effort needed to move the twist grip is so great that it makes her wrist ache with the effort and causes tenderness between the thumb and 1st finger, and when my wife releases the twist grip it has a tendency to slip back a gear or two, it's as if the return springs are too strong for the job.
     
  13. Yojimbo_

    Yojimbo_ Active Member

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    My grip shift is almost effortless to change.

    Have you confirmed the stiffness isn't in the derailleur? If it isn't, why don't you take the grip shift apart and replace the cables and housing. It isn't that difficult to do and there are YouTube videos that can help.
     
  14. Skibiker

    Skibiker New Member

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    Many thanks will look at that tomorrow.
     
  15. mulebikes

    mulebikes New Member

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    hey...just a thought....not sure of this...but i reckon most places have a bike shop renowned for haveing really random and old stuff knockin around....maybe ask in your regular bike shop if there is such a shop in your locality...good chance ye can get a cheap, although older, external type shifter there.

    if ye get stuck check this....damn ugly but should work...pretty cheap too...

    Shimano TX50 6 Speed Thumb Shifter

    just double checked this link...the photo is of a 7 speed shifter....caution!!!

    here's another set.....

    [ame]http://www.amazon.com/Shimano-SL-TY22-Tourney-Shift-Lever/dp/B000A6B6WA[/ame]

    we must try to keep the ladies happy and on the bike!!!!!!!!!!good luck
     
  16. Gadjetty

    Gadjetty New Member

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    Hi,
    I'm female too and have recently started cycling again. I also have problems with my grip gear shifts as they make my tendons ache (thumbs). But I reckon I'll get used to that again.
    However, I find it very hard to get into the higher gears for climbing hills (to get the chain onto the smallest sprocket). I can change gears from the middle sprocket to the large one and back, but more often than not, just when I need to go up a hill, the gear change to the smallest sprocket doesn't work and I end up having to push the bike up the hill.
    Any tips from you guys please?
    My bike is a budget bike bought from a German department store. I'm happy with it otherwise, it has suspension and I can't afford to change bikes at present.
     
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