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From grip shift to... Not grip shift.

Old 05-05-17, 08:49 PM
  #1  
Skeletor916
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From grip shift to... Not grip shift.

Looking at changing the incredibly unhelpful 3x6 grip shift that I'm constantly accidentally changing gears with. I don't see anything particularly helpful regarding the shifter other than "GripShift TM" on the handle.

It looks like this: (hoping this works)

which is identified as a sunlite product

Basically, I'm wondering if I'm going to have to replace derailleurs, the cabling, and a bunch of other stuff to rid my bike and my life of these horrible grip shifters or if I'll be able to just swap it out with another shifter. I read a bit, watched a video, but it was just "find a compatible one" which isn't much help.

Thanks in advance!
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Old 05-05-17, 09:30 PM
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Since you don't know which family of shift compatibility your twist grips/system is we can't really answer your question. I'll bet your system is Shimano compatible. If so then any equally compatible shift control (lever) will work with the rest of the drivetrain. If you don't know how to figure this out then visit your LBS and they will help you for the cost of their selling you the right parts. Both Shimano (and their clones) and SRAM make lever controls to replace twist grip ones. Andy
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Old 05-05-17, 09:36 PM
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First, these shifters appear to be pretty basic - and I'm assuming this is a pretty basic bike. If the shifters are just failing, it looks like they can be replaced for under $30. That could be an option. Then you know you could keep the same housing and cables (provided they aren't frayed and you can get them back through the housing).

It has been awhile since I've done this, but I have removed the grip shifters from a couple of bikes and installed different shifters The big thing about it working with new shifters is what your derailleurs you currently have (front and rear). You want to make sure those match the new shifters.

From your picture, it looks like your shifters are Shimano compatiable with other things that are 6 speed (for the back, 3 for front). This looks like it is in the tourney line (as an option) of Shimano products. These are mostly other kinds of grip shifters, but I didn find the following thumb shifter:
https://www.amazon.com/Shimano-Tourn...ywords=SL-RS35.

Going a step beyond this. In the past, when I've been looking at something similar, I've just replaced the grip shifters with stem-mounted friction shifters. These are what was on old style ten-speeds. Two levers that attach to the stem near your handlebars. You can buy them new (they are cheap) but they will be dirt cheap (just a buck or two) anywhere where they sell used bike parts. Friction shifters pretty much fit everything but won't index. They're mechanically simple, especially more than these lower end index shifters that really aren't designed for longevity. They should last longer. You won't get any style points, though. Stem shifters can do their job, and do it well, but they are associated with low end road bikes from a bygone era.

You wouldn't necessarily have to replace the cables and housing if and only if your new shifters work fine with the length of housing/cable you have now and the cable fits your new shifter...but without knowing more, I'd guess it is more likely you'd need new cables and housing. In particular, switching shifters requires re-threading the cables through the housing. If the end of your cables are frayed or otherwise a big mess (and they often are), you'll need to replace the cables as you can't threat hot mess cable ends back through housing. Again, it has been a long time, but I think I also remember those grip shifters being horrible about getting the cables out anyway.

Last edited by vins0010; 05-05-17 at 09:46 PM.
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Old 05-05-17, 09:38 PM
  #4  
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Sunlite is a budget brand
But I believe they are Shimano compatible.
So they derailers can probably stay as is.

biggest issue is that it's a 6spd on the rear.
No one makes 6spd Rapidfire Shifters.
Which means your only option for an alternate style shifter is a simple thumb lever. Either indexed or friction.

if that kind of ergonomics works for you:
oh look, here's one that's also made by sunrace
https://www.niagaracycle.com/categor...ht-6-speed-sis
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Old 05-05-17, 10:36 PM
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Thanks everyone for the identification help. Sorry as i am responding from my cell phone that i won't be multi quoting or anything fancy like that.

My bike is pretty old, but it's solid. A 90s era specialized hard rock. Truthfully, I'm learning to ride on it (at 34, never learned as a kid) and learning the maintenance/repair/replacement goodness in the process. So far have replaced tubes, tires, saddle, pedals, adjusted the derailleur because of some chain drag, and i added a wired trip computer. I'm sure it sounds silly but I like the tinkering aspect of it and I got the bike for $40... So there's that.

I don't want to replace the shifters with something similar because it's frustrating to shift on accident when I'm death-gripping the handles. With the riding I'm doing (or planning on doing) it's not like I'll be shifting regularly.

I didn't even know about those stem-adjacent friction shifters, so thanks for that too. They're funky and I like them after seeing them in a video.

I'm not particularly worried about replacing the cables, in hindsight. More the derailleurs. Another expense and potentially beyond my scope at the moment.

Thanks again for the help and especially the product links. In hindsight, I probably should have waited to post this until I could type everything out but I definitely appreciate you guys taking the time to respond.
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Old 05-05-17, 10:54 PM
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Just use some 7 speed shifters and the limit screws on the derailleur will naturally lock out the 7th gear selection.
Shimano Altus SL-M310 shifters would work just fine.
Shimano ST-EF65 are also pretty good and pretty cheap. Since they incorporate the brake lever you could swap your levers out too.
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Old 05-05-17, 10:57 PM
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If you payed $40 for the bike, pretty much anything you do will cost a significant part of the bike.
But if the bike fits you, and you're OK with spending, go ahead.
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Old 05-05-17, 11:46 PM
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I don't think you can use 7 speed shifters with a 6 speed freewheel/cassette due to cog spacing. If it were me, I'd get some inexpensive thumb shifters, maybe indexed, and handlebar grips and call it a day. I wouldn't even mess with stem shifters and flat handlebars. If you can re-use the cables, maybe $20 at the most. Check out eBay.

John
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Old 05-06-17, 12:05 AM
  #9  
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7 speed index won't work perfectly. Depending on one's criteria, it can be made to work OK.

Getting decent quality 2nd hand 6 speed indexed shifters, or even friction shifters is a good option. Many old 6 and 7 speed indexed shifters have a friction/indexed switch, so one can choose which mode to use. All the friction ones will work.

Something like this is perfect:


My writing and info on shifter compatibility can be read here, if it helps.
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Old 05-06-17, 01:11 AM
  #10  
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If all else fails you can get a pair of Sunrace SLM 10 friction thumbies with cables for $10 or less. I got a set a few months ago intending to only temporarily replace the left indexed shifter after it kept skipping the middle chain ring. But I've gotten so accustomed to the simple friction shifter I haven't been in a hurry to repair or replace the original Shimano indexed thumb shifter.
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Old 05-06-17, 01:36 AM
  #11  
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Yeah you are right, I've got away with using a 7 on 6, but it's not ideal.

You can get the ST-EF41 in 6 speed however... but they aren't super cheap.
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Old 05-06-17, 05:43 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Skeletor916 View Post
I don't want to replace the shifters with something similar because it's frustrating to shift on accident when I'm death-gripping the handles. With the riding I'm doing (or planning on doing) it's not like I'll be shifting regularly.
There is another option, and that is to replace your grips. Buy a pair of ODI Longneck grips like these:

https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...s.php?id=54066

Their design makes them easy to cut and make shorter.

Cut and make the grip an inch or more longer than the half-grip that you currently have on the bike. Err on the side of making the grip longer, because longer means more friction and the grip is better able to stay put on the bar.

Loosen the grip shifter and shove it further inboard. Install your new, longer grip.

Put the other grip on the other side, so that things match.

With an older bike, it is possible you'll need to source a wider handlebar.

Don't forget the bar-end plugs. A set will come w/the grips. Install them too, for safety.

Here's a blog post I just remembered that I wrote on the technique:

Cutting Grips ? Jonathan Gennick Living in the 906

I do this sort of thing all the time with kids bikes. No one likes how short those twist grips are.
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Old 05-06-17, 07:03 AM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Skeletor916 View Post
Looking at changing the incredibly unhelpful 3x6 grip shift that I'm constantly accidentally changing gears with. I don't see anything particularly helpful regarding the shifter other than "GripShift TM" on the handle.

It looks like this: (hoping this works)

which is identified as a sunlite product

Basically, I'm wondering if I'm going to have to replace derailleurs, the cabling, and a bunch of other stuff to rid my bike and my life of these horrible grip shifters or if I'll be able to just swap it out with another shifter. I read a bit, watched a video, but it was just "find a compatible one" which isn't much help.

Thanks in advance!
Another knockoff brand found on big box store bikes. I've seen others, like Sun Run, an obvious knockoff of Sun Race, which produces respected, functional components. The knockoffs I've seen, for the most part have very little precision or durability built into them, and if the derailleurs are from the same source, pairing them with any indexed shifters, even good ones may not work very well.
Put on a set of cheap friction shifters and call it good.
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Old 05-06-17, 09:15 AM
  #14  
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Brand of rear derailleur is the fork in the road .. Shimano Or What? SRAM*, Microshift?

*Grip shift was their TM brand name, but licences to, Legit, copy can be bought..
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Old 05-07-17, 09:35 AM
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Thanks again for the help/ideas, everyone.

So after more digging, there is more information.

The grip shifts are SRAM SRT 200i shifters. The rear derailleur is an indexed Shimano.
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Old 05-07-17, 09:39 AM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by Skeletor916 View Post
Thanks again for the help/ideas, everyone.

So after more digging, there is more information.

The grip shifts are SRAM SRT 200i shifters. The rear derailleur is an indexed Shimano.
Well, in that case, a set of indexed Shimano shifters matching the number of cogs should work. One thing about Shimano, even the bottom tier stuff works.
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Old 05-07-17, 10:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Dan Burkhart View Post
Well, in that case, a set of indexed Shimano shifters matching the number of cogs should work. One thing about Shimano, even the bottom tier stuff works.
Cool cool cool.

So something like this Shimano Tourney SL-TX30 Shifter Set 3x6Speed Left Right MTB Bike Thumb Shifters | eBay
or this if I wanted to combine the shift/brake lever? https://www.amazon.com/Shimano-Tourn...dp/B00PM3T8WQ/

Come to think of it... is it even preferable to have them combined? If it's like most things, I would think you'd want them separate. Like that weird restaurant that makes Chinese, Italian, and American food. You know it can't be good at any of them.
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Old 05-07-17, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Skeletor916 View Post
Cool cool cool.

So something like this Shimano Tourney SL-TX30 Shifter Set 3x6Speed Left Right MTB Bike Thumb Shifters | eBay
or this if I wanted to combine the shift/brake lever? https://www.amazon.com/Shimano-Tourn...dp/B00PM3T8WQ/

Come to think of it... is it even preferable to have them combined? If it's like most things, I would think you'd want them separate. Like that weird restaurant that makes Chinese, Italian, and American food. You know it can't be good at any of them.
The combination levers will be fine as long as the bike has linear pull or disc brakes. If it has cantilevers or side pulls, you would need to get different levers with shorter cable pull.
Some levers are resettable to work with either type, but I saw no mention of that feature on that listing.
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Old 05-07-17, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Dan Burkhart View Post
The combination levers will be fine as long as the bike has linear pull or disc brakes. If it has cantilevers or side pulls, you would need to get different levers with shorter cable pull.
Some levers are resettable to work with either type, but I saw no mention of that feature on that listing.
Great! Thanks again. The brakes are definitely cantilever so I'm going to see what I can find at my LBS before looking to order online.
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Old 05-07-17, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Skeletor916 View Post
Come to think of it... is it even preferable to have them combined? If it's like most things, I would think you'd want them separate. Like that weird restaurant that makes Chinese, Italian, and American food. You know it can't be good at any of them.
combining the shifter and brake levers into a single mounting reduces weight
may not apply to your specific situation though, since you're comparing two different types of shifter
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Old 05-08-17, 11:04 AM
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Simply get Shimano Revoshift 6 speed version. Should work perfectly as their other speed ones.

Don't waste time using a 7 speed shifter. It doesn't mesh perfectly.
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Old 05-16-17, 07:50 PM
  #22  
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Quick update:
Installed the Shimano Tourney SL-TX30 shifters and ODI grips while keeping the old brake levers. The rear derailleur was easy and the front was finicky as heck to get adjusted properly. Have taken it out on a few rides since and it's SOOOOOO much nicer. Thanks again for the help, everyone.
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Old 05-16-17, 08:35 PM
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here... get this... SHIMANO ST-EF41 RAPID FIRE 3 X 7 SPEED BLACK SHIFTER--LEVER W/ CABLES

then,upgrade BACK TO the 7 speed freehub and cassette your bike came with originally, once you have the extra cash... you can locate such rear wheels, with a cassette(gear cluster) for about 20 to 25 bucks on your local craigslist.
the rear wheel your bike has on it now is a freeWHEEL design, and you can opt to buy a 7 speed freeWHEEL gear cluster for about 20 bucks, then have a shop swap it on for you.

it would help us here to post a pic of your rear gear cluster, especially the central part of it... and remember to try and upgrade to a similar count of teeth on the biggest gear on the freewheel, or you might run into trouble with chain length, and enough range of tension of the derailleur, ok?
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