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Old 01-29-05, 02:51 PM   #1
nhcycle
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Suggestions for gear shifters for arthritic hands

I have arthritis in my wrists and thumbs. I have difficulty using my Shimano shifter. Can anyone suggest a shifter that is easier to use for someone who has no strength in their hands?
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Old 01-29-05, 03:59 PM   #2
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Road or hybrid/mountain? If the latter, then maybe grip shifters? Since you are holding the handlebars anyway, all you have to do is twist forward or backward on the grip and you've shifted.
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Old 01-30-05, 02:39 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhcycle
I have arthritis in my wrists and thumbs. I have difficulty using my Shimano shifter. Can anyone suggest a shifter that is easier to use for someone who has no strength in their hands?
As much as I personally dislike these ( I can't believe I'm recommending them but they fit your needs) Try a set of these http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/137...or-V-Brake.htm
They allow you to shift by pushing down and pulling up on the brake lever. You don't have to grip and twist or push with your thumb. Pressure from say two fingers will operate the mechanism.
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Old 01-30-05, 03:27 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raiyn
As much as I personally dislike these ( I can't believe I'm recommending them but they fit your needs) Try a set of these http://www.pricepoint.com/detail/137...or-V-Brake.htm
They allow you to shift by pushing down and pulling up on the brake lever. You don't have to grip and twist or push with your thumb. Pressure from say two fingers will operate the mechanism.
Still have to use your thumb to go up right? I'd go with grip shifters.
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Old 01-31-05, 12:30 AM   #5
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Still have to use your thumb to go up right? I'd go with grip shifters.
No back of the fingers. Arthritis makes it hard to grip things
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Old 01-31-05, 01:13 AM   #6
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No back of the fingers. Arthritis makes it hard to grip things
oh...ok...well the the only obvious choice...use what's still working, your legs, and go SS
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Old 01-31-05, 02:18 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nhcycle
I have arthritis in my wrists and thumbs. I have difficulty using my Shimano shifter. Can anyone suggest a shifter that is easier to use for someone who has no strength in their hands?

I have partial paralysis of both hands due to arrested Lou Gehrig's Disease....Any movement of thumbs & fingers is only accomplished telegraph-style from weak residual wrist action....My upper arms & shoulders thankfully remain strong.....Unlike arthritis, I experience no pain.....


My road bike has drop-bars with bar-end shifters mounted sideways....Movement is horizontal instead of the usual vertical....This set-up enables me to move the bar-end shifters using the little-finger-side forearm bone....No wrist, thumb, or fingers necessary! .....

As you know,from adapting to your arthritis, you may need to practice before it ceases to feel awkward & becomes perfectly natural.....Why doesn't averybody do it this way?!



Hope this helps......
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Old 01-31-05, 03:01 AM   #8
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If you have a road bike, would downtube shifters be an option?
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Old 01-31-05, 03:29 AM   #9
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what if he gets one of those nifty bikes where the bike uses weights on the wheel to change gears.
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Old 01-31-05, 04:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PWRDbyTRD
oh...ok...well the the only obvious choice...use what's still working, your legs, and go SS
Actually P---T, I like this one best. Depends, of course, on terrain. But if one can dispense with gear-shifts altogether with SS, it's only a case of holding on to the handlebars. I think KIS (leave the other S off because there are enough stupid people here without suggesting everyone join them).
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Old 01-31-05, 06:04 AM   #11
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SS? Don't you still have to cope with brake levers? Why not a fixie without a front brake? That's even simpler and all in the legs, right?
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Old 01-31-05, 06:38 AM   #12
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Sachs (now SRAM) used to make some interesting shifters for their 7 speed hub gear. The Speedtronic was an electronically actuated replacement for the cable operated click-box.
Mavic used to make the Zapp electronic derailleur system.
This is about the only sensible application of electronic shifting.
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Old 02-01-05, 07:00 PM   #13
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Single speed coaster brake? No hands need to brake or shift.
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Old 02-02-05, 08:52 AM   #14
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I'd have to concur with Bar end shifters (barcons). I believe that
they are still available for the newer gearing. (have to check on that).

With all due respect to the SS/FIXIE contingency (and apoliogies to
nhcycle) unless we are talking a baloon tire cruiser (coaster brake) I don't
think this is the kind of bike for someone with arthritis that advanced.
also, ever think the nh in his name might stand for New Hampshire, which
if I haven't forgotten my geography in a senior moment is pretty hilly/mountainous.

just my 2 or 3 cents worth.
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Old 02-02-05, 10:28 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MERTON
how do you brake?

Good question.....My brake levers are mounted up-side-down near the stem (handlepost) on the tops of the dropbars.....thus I push on them rather than squeeze them....There's just enough room between the lever & the bar-top for me to rest my hands there.....When my hands are wedged in there, I can get a moderate pulling action when hammering up hill.....Oh, when I'm in a road situation where I suspect I might have to brake quickly & delicately, I ride the top of the brake-lever housing enabling me to feather the brake lever with the little-finger edge of my hands....Full hands on the brake-levers needs to be avoided because the faster you stop the faster you stop!....to the potential point of an endo & faceplant! ...


By the way, Merton, I've been suspecting that beneath your bravura, you are really a thoughtful & sensitive young person........
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Old 02-02-05, 10:31 AM   #16
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He can always buy an auto shifting "Landrider" real cheap on Ebay! ;-)

NOT..

The Bianchi Auto Milano is an option.
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