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  1. #1
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    Grip shifters and a Shimano 3cc hub -- compatible?

    I think the title has it all. I'm fixing up an old folder for my wife. It's got a Shimano 3cc hub with an old, thumb shifter. I know my wife prefers twist shifters, but I figured I was better off sticking to the shifter that came with the bike, until I saw this. A Shimano 3 speed twist shifter. I hadn't even realized that was an option on these older bikes until I happened on an old cruiser that had them the other day. I figure a Shimano hub and Shimano 3 speed shifter sounds like a winning combination, but I thought I'd see anyone knew of any compatibility issues before I tried it out.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Bill Kapaun's Avatar
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    I wouldn't count on it working.
    Those old Shimano 3xx hubs are pretty fragile internally.
    Even being a "little" off, means the gears won't be fully engaged. A recipe for crunch!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    So you think trying a different shifter is going to cause problems for me? Or you think just continuing to use that hub will cause me trouble?

    I have an old Sturmey Archer 3-speed coaster hub that I could use instead. I haven't been considering it because the original Shimano is already conveniently laced into the wheel. Any grip shifters that would be compatible with that?

  4. #4
    Senior Member Bill Kapaun's Avatar
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    The 3xx series are 20+ years old. Any compatibility would be a coincidence.
    The hub will probably be fine for normal riding, as long as the gears are properly engaged.
    The amount of "throw" on the indicator rod is so small, it doesn't take much error to mess things up.
    It probably could be done, if you measured the actual "throw" per shift and compared that to X brand shifter. Then find a ShiftMate that would convert that ratio to the proper Shimano "throw".
    Not sure if it would be worth it?
    EDIT:
    Almost forgot cable compatibility. You have the "special" 3xx cable end to the hub..
    I believe the actual Shimano cable and housing comes as a unit because the ends would prevent inserting the cable into the housing afterwards?
    So, I think you would have to do some cable "splicing"?
    I got rid of my 3xx gear a couple years ago, so the memory is somewhat foggy.
    Last edited by Bill Kapaun; 06-21-08 at 04:00 PM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the info, Bill. Sounds like the best plan may be to work with what I have for now, but when I go to replace the rims, lace in the SA 3-speed hub instead.

  6. #6
    Biking Viking. goatalope's Avatar
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    I have a 3CC hub with a grip shifter that look like the ones you linked to. It worked fine.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by goatalope View Post
    I have a 3CC hub with a grip shifter that look like the ones you linked to. It worked fine.
    Well that's encouraging. Maybe I should give it a try. I do have a back up hub, just in case, so maybe it's worth a shot.

  8. #8
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    I have also used a Shimano 3 speed grip shifter in place of a Shimano 3 speed lever. The grip shifter does require the proper cable. Shimano and Sturmey Archer shifters are not interchangable.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    Well, that's two votes in favour of it working, so I may have to give it a try. I don't want to mess up the hub, but when my wife was picking out her full-sized bike, the twist shifter was one of her sticking points, and this is all for an old folder that I'm hoping we can travel with, so I want to make as much to her specs as possible.

    And, yeah, I figured I wouldn't be able to just swap hubs without also swapping shifters. Is there an SA equivalent of the Shimano twist grip? I was just assuming that if I went the the Sturmey Archer hub, I'd have to give up on the twist shifter, but maybe not.

  10. #10
    guy on a bike
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    any update on this?

  11. #11
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    No. I'll try and remember to post back here when I actually try it. At the moment, the bike is in pieces, and I've just been collecting pieces for reassembly. I don't even have the grip shifter yet, but I hope to soon. Even so, there's some stripping, derusting, and powdercoating between now and then, so it may take some time before I report back.

  12. #12
    Senior Member badmother's Avatar
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    I`dlike to hear more about this if possible. I`we got a 20" wheel with a Shimano 3cc. Has got the stiff cable, not the type you find om most bikes. Is it possible to find a grip shift for it? I`d like to put this wheel on a folder If I can find a shifter I like better than the old one.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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    This project has been on hold for me for a while, so I can't report back on that specific situation, but I did swap a Sturmey Archer hub for a Sram on my other bike. The Sturmey shifter didn't agree with the Sram (actually an old Sachs) hub. I got a modern Sram shifter, and it works great. This makes me a lot more confident about changing shifters on my other bike. I feel like as long as the manufacterer is the same for both parts, there's a good chance it'll work. Since both Shimano and Sturmy made a twist shifter, I should be able to find a working combination for my bike.

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    Anybody know where you can get just a regular Shimano shifter for the old Shimano 3-speeds? Any NOS or remakes around?

  15. #15
    Senior Member Rob_E's Avatar
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