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Thread: help with gears

  1. #1
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    help with gears

    Hi, I am looking to buy new gear shifters for my old dawes ultra galaxy with dropped handlebars and was looking at sti shifters(or brifters) (that are on the brakes). My problem is that my bike has 2 cogs on the front and 6 on the back (i assume this makes it a 12 speed) and dont really understand how buying new shifters works. I cant find any 12 speed brifters anywhere!

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks loads,
    Tommy.

  2. #2
    Senior Member cyclist2000's Avatar
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    And you won't find them anywhere
    I don't do vintage, I bought them new, rode them, kept them. Now they are just old bikes
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/bustercrb/sets/72157623483647522/

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    Oh.
    Is there any particular reason for this?

    What are my alternatives?

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    Senior Member cyclist2000's Avatar
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    Brifters weren't made during the 6-speed rear cog era, shimano had sis down tube shifters brifters were introduced first to 7 or 8 speed drive trains
    I don't do vintage, I bought them new, rode them, kept them. Now they are just old bikes
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/bustercrb/sets/72157623483647522/

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    Assuming you have a freewheel, not a cassette, you can replace it with a 7-speed freewheel. But that may require a slightly longer axle and a later rear derailleur with the correct actuation ratio to work with 7-speed STI shifters. You would also need cable stop bosses on the down tube, new cables and housings (those come with new shifters), and new handlebar tape.
    The money put into this kind of upgrade may be better spent on a new bike.

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    ah. ok thanks for the info. any ideas for alternatives? I currently have downtube friction shifters.

  7. #7
    Senior Member cyclist2000's Avatar
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    Is the old Dawes Galaxy is a touring bike? if it is, a lot of tourers favor the bar end shifters these can be used in a friction mode vs trying to find a 6 speed sis version and the proper rear derailleur.

    If you are intent on using brifters then look at the response from Al1943.

    or find the components from a donor bike.
    I don't do vintage, I bought them new, rode them, kept them. Now they are just old bikes
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/bustercrb/sets/72157623483647522/

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    thanks. I might just get some new down tubes (unless anyone really reccomends tube ends?). if I buy a set of 12 speed changers will that work or do I need a 6 and a 2?
    also, would you reccomend friction or non friction?
    thanks loads.
    I apreaciate all the help.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Monster Pete's Avatar
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    12 speed shifters don't exist AFAIK- 11 rear sprockets is the maximum you can cram in as yet (and this strikes me as too small a benefit to be worthwhile). Suitable shifters will be described as 6-speed, since that is the rear freewheel they suit. The left shifter will most likely be friction, and with two chainrings in front that's all that is needed, since the high/low stops give you all the indexing you need. Another option if you don't like downtbe shifters are stem-mounted shifters or bar-end shifters.

  10. #10
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Frame maker Kelly has a widget to fit downtube shifters up by the brake lever.

    Path of least resistance Bar End, or Down tube levers,
    but Kelly 'Take Offs' are an alternative .

  11. #11
    back in the saddle bent-not-broken's Avatar
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    What are you trying to accomplish? Do the current Down Tube (DT) shifters work or do you just not like DT shifter? If you don't like them what do you like. As stated Brifters are not a good (economical) option for that bike.
    Bent

    When the earth is covered with 2/3's beer, then I'll buy bottled water!

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    If your bike is shifting OK just ride it and save your money.

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    Yep, they are old and getting stiffer and was thinking about a replacement anyway, surely shifters onthe handle bars are more ergonomic?

    I looked atr the kelly take off. it looks more like a rip off! 30 pounds to stick my own shifters on the handle bars!!! I could do that on my own with a bit of duck tape and a pair of pliers!!!

    Ooh! just found this! Looks interesting...

    http://yacf.co.uk/forum/index.php?ac...;topic=20727.0

    Hmm...

    Btw, Thanks for all the responses!!

  14. #14
    Senior Member Monster Pete's Avatar
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    The cheapest option for you would be to get a stem clamp for your DT shifters, along with replacement cables. Not quite on the handlebars themselves but more ergonomic than the downtube.

  15. #15
    Real Men Ride Ordinaries fuzz2050's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tburn View Post
    I looked atr the kelly take off. it looks more like a rip off! 30 pounds to stick my own shifters on the handle bars!!! I could do that on my own with a bit of duck tape and a pair of pliers!!!
    !
    If you thought the Kelly shifters were a rip off, wait till you see what Paul makes. Or for that matter, what a new pair of brifters costs.

  16. #16
    Senior Member Pars's Avatar
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    Since these are downtube friction shifters, pretty much any downtube shifter will work. The first thing I would do would be to disassemble and clean the ones you have (pay attention to the washers, etc. when you disassemble them!), and reassemble them with light grease on the washers. You can adjust their tightness with the screw on the side (usually a thumbscrew), but these depend upon being tight enough to hold the derailleur position. The best D/T shifters were retrofriction (usually Simplex), which used a spring mech. to hold the position without being overly tight.

    I never cared for stem-mounted shifters as it always felt like I was reaching up for them and getting out of a good riding position, whereas D/T shifters you pretty much just drop your hand/arm and there you are.

    Switching to indexed (STI) shifters could be done, but more than just the shifters will need to be replaced. 7 speed is the lowest number of speeds available, but D/T shifters were made by at least Shimano, and possibly SunTour as well. You would need to use the appropriate bits (freewheel, possibly rear derailleur, hub/frame spacing, cables and housing for indexed shifters, and maybe more).

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