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Old 02-15-12, 02:45 PM   #1
mainstreetexile
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Exage rapidfire shifter overhaul?

Anybody ever overhauled one of these exage rapidfire shifters? It's on a vintage mountain bike, I think the part # is ST-M050. The front one was sticky and only hit a few of the gears. I opened 'er up and now it won't catch / click at all.

This is why I prefer friction shifters and I would throw a set on this bike but I'll probably be passing it along to a friend who wants to get into riding a bit. Is it toast or is there a trick to getting it 'pre-loaded' / re-sprung when you attach the bottom part back onto the brake lever mount?

These pictures aren't mine, but they're the same part. Just a visual aid:



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Old 02-15-12, 03:00 PM   #2
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I have taken apart a bunch of them and gotten them to work great again. You take the bottom screw out, the barrel adjuster and then you work slowly. You unscrew the chrome nut (reverse threads) and take off one piece at a time noting direction of the piece. When you put it back together, some pieces will only slide on one way. After its apart enough, you use some strong solvent to clean out all the nasty sticky dried up grease in there. Blow it out clean. Put back together and lube with some oil, I use 3-1 oil just because its what I have available. Pay particular attention to cleaning up the pivot points and the pawls that are probably sticky as all get out.

For solvent, I use either brake cleaner, carb/choke cleaner, or wd40.

You might even get lucky and be able to just spray it down with solvents and clean it out enough to get it working well without disassembling it.
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Old 02-15-12, 03:32 PM   #3
Bill Kapaun
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Originally Posted by bobotech View Post
I have taken apart a bunch of them and gotten them to work great again.....
Sounds like you've been busy!
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...era?highlight=

Just do as MINIMAL disassembly as required.
Get the "straw" from a spray can of WD-40 or similar solvent and FLUSH liberally.
Let soak for a few minutes and try out the shifters.
Repeat (up to 2 more times) if necessary.
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Old 02-15-12, 03:43 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
Sounds like you've been busy!
http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...era?highlight=

Just do as MINIMAL disassembly as required.
Get the "straw" from a spray can of WD-40 or similar solvent and FLUSH liberally.
Let soak for a few minutes and try out the shifters.
Repeat (up to 2 more times) if necessary.
Well my local bike coop had a bunch of them that were all sticky and pretty much non-functional so I took them home and played with them during my free time. I'm weird in that I like doing little tedious projects like taking apart shifters and cleaning them or rebuilding carburetors from various small engines, repairing laptops, etc. Even though i may spend an hour cleaning up a 10 dollar shifter, i find it relaxing and enjoyable.

I also have 3 older '90s era mountain bikes that use those old STI shifters and they all were sticky.
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Old 02-15-12, 03:58 PM   #5
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Thanks for the responses everybody. I took the right shifter apart a bit and it looks like the problem was that they were shifted too far past the first click / gear so they were unable to catch. I manually rotated the little center piece with the pawls / catches on it and I'm going to try re-installing it.



On the first gear:





Where it was, too far to catch any gears:





Is there supposed to be something that stops the center piece from rotating that far?

Last edited by mainstreetexile; 02-15-12 at 04:14 PM.
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Old 02-15-12, 04:05 PM   #6
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I think that perhaps that pawl isn't falling down far enough to catch on the teeth. I overhauled some 200ex shifters, and after finding all the parts on the floor, they went back together with only minor swearing.
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Old 02-15-12, 04:27 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by mainstreetexile View Post
Thanks for the responses everybody. I took the right shifter apart a bit and it looks like the problem was that they were shifted too far past the first click / gear so they were unable to catch. I manually rotated the little center piece with the pawls / catches on it and I'm going to try re-installing it.



On the first gear:





Where it was, too far to catch any gears:





Is there supposed to be something that stops the center piece from rotating that far?
FWIW, I normally leave the big allen head screw in place and don't take that off. I only take off teh phillips head screw and barrel adjuster and work from that side down. if you work the other direction, its next to impossible to get the unit back together properly.

I actually came across a unit like yours, the one that doesn't appear to have a shelf to stop the ratchet pawl from going past the 7 main ratchet shelves. I ended up using it for parts towards another just about identical shifter except it had a shelf/stop that prevented the shifter from dropping past the 7 main ratchet shelves.
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Old 02-15-12, 05:29 PM   #8
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Hey, nice to see that stuff on this forum. A while ago I mounted some well used 200 GS shifters, derailers and crankset on a 14-speed road bike just to see if it would work and the result was most satisfying. Not the prettiest or coolest of Shimano groups, but it works well.
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Old 02-16-12, 05:46 AM   #9
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99.9% of the time it is the pawls that just get stuck and with some lube and a little screwdriver to move it back and forth manually they will work after that, I never take them apart any farther then that to repair them. A lot of the time spraying it down with CRC and letting it sit for a few minutes will work I then blow them out with air and lube with light oil and all is good to go.

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Old 02-16-12, 06:42 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by non-fixie View Post
Hey, nice to see that stuff on this forum. A while ago I mounted some well used 200 GS shifters, derailers and crankset on a 14-speed road bike just to see if it would work and the result was most satisfying. Not the prettiest or coolest of Shimano groups, but it works well.
I rehabbed a Fuji Monterrey womens Hybrid bike (700c / cantis / indexed ) that had a 200gs set on it.. after rehabbing the shifting was flawless. I was impressed.
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Old 07-09-15, 08:08 PM   #11
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Sorry to res and old thread, but it seems that I have the same kind of shifters @mainstreetexile I want to do some work like you did with your, but my only problem is I don't know how to separate the cable from the shifter. I've tried a few things, but it's my 1st time doing any real bike maintenance so I can't tell you what I did using the proper terminology, but the part that twists where the cables connects to the shifters, doesn't want to come out. I could provide pictures if needed.
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Old 07-11-15, 04:14 PM   #12
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Pictures needed! The barrel usually threads right out counter-clockwise. Bent adjuster barrels require some force/torque btw.

The cable feeds through the shifter only when in hi gear (as in smallest cog)!

Glennfordx4 is exactly right, that some coaxing in all direction with small screwdriver and oil will free both pawl pivots(!), but don't pry against the pawl's fragile hair spring by accident.

I always just remove the cable and adjuster, flip the clamp shifter 180-degrees on the bar, then remove the little screw and work the plastic cover off.
Then I locate both pawls, lube them and the spool too, and free up both pawls with a mini screwdriver. It helps greatly to push the pawl off-axis, in both directions, as well as swinging it through it's normal motion arc! Repeat, repeat, repeat!

About half of the time, I can restore sluggish shifters without any disassembly at all, by blasting them to the saturation point with this foaming oil product. I then lay the bike over to let the oil drain out for ten minutes before cleaning off excess oil and working the levers.
Shifters that will not click fully even when moved <<<slowly>>> in warm weather will not likely respond to this "no disassembly" method.


Last edited by dddd; 07-11-15 at 04:28 PM.
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