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  1. #1
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    shifter cable stuck in downtube shift boss

    Hi all. I'm trying to replace the shift cable on a friend's bike. When I cut the cable and try to thread it back out of the downtube shifter, it seems as though the head of the cable has become lodged and it won't budge. I've tried everything I can think of to get it out of there. The other cable popped out with no problem. Has anyone run into this before? Any tips or tricks would be helpful. Thanks.


    Richard

  2. #2
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    I hate that. If the stop is slotted, you can use a very thin screw driver and tap it out from the backside.

  3. #3
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    This is a pain...got some penetrating oil?

  4. #4
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    Try some penetration oil and let is soak for a while. If that fails, measure the diameter of the other cable end fitting and use a drill bit the same diameter or just a hair smaller to drill out the stuck fitting. Be very careful not to drill too deep as you only want to remove the head, you don't want to drill through the smaller hole the cable wire goes through

  5. #5
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    I never learned to ride a bike. It is my deepest shame.
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    I would try to drill it out.

    I would probably use a small nail to make a guide hole then use a tiny drill bit to make a hole a few mm deep into the head of the cable. If the drill bit snags on the cable end it might break it loose, then your problem is solved. If the drill makes its hole and comes out cleanly you could try threading a small self tapping screw into the hole and pulling with pliers. If none of that worked I would probably try drilling further through and take the cable end off the cable and pick out the bits.

    Remember: if you take my advice and end up destroying your shifter, or getting a peice of drill bit or cable-end-shrapnel in your eye, I will deny ever giving any advice.

    -LD

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by LarDasse74 View Post
    Remember: if you take my advice and end up destroying your shifter, or getting a peice of drill bit or cable-end-shrapnel in your eye, I will deny ever giving any advice.
    -LD
    Consider that my disclaimer too.

    I just miked the end fittings of a couple of Shimano shift cables and they averaged 0.175" or about 4.45 mm so a 3/32" or 7/64" drill bit could be used for the initial pilot hole. Threading a sheet metal screw into the hole as an extractor is a good idea too.
    Last edited by HillRider; 04-01-09 at 10:20 AM.

  7. #7
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    If penetrating oil doesn't work by itself, heat the shifter lever with a propane torch and then try again to push the cable end back out with pliers held close to the back of the lever body. Remove the shifter from the bike and disassemble it as much as possible to minimize collateral damage from the torch.
    My one attempt at drilling out a cable end wrecked the shifter when the drill bit "walked" off-centre and into the surrounding shifter material. Maybe with practice....

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