Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Bicycle Mechanics
Reload this Page >

Shifter cable super tight...

Notices
Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

Shifter cable super tight...

Old 03-11-18, 10:46 AM
  #1  
eddiearniwhatev
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Shifter cable super tight...

Ever since I put a new set of handlebars on my Long Haul Trucker, the front derrailleur shifter cable has been super tight. It takes some effort to bring the chain to the top chainring.

I thought at first it was the length of the housing leading from the shifter to the frame - it looked a little short, plus if the chain was on the top ring the housing was notably tight, so much so that it was getting compressed at the ends. So i replaced it with a longer bit, with a more gentle curve from handlebar to frame, also replacing the cable itself. This didn't work. Still super tight.

I looked to see if the cable was routed incorrectly, perhaps "sawing" through something, it wasn't.

I checked to see if the problem lay in the shifter itself, and saw that without a cable/ derrailleur pulling on it, there's no tension.

I checked the derrailleur itself to see if it's got some issue, and it seems fine, the resistance is normal, from what I can tell.

Any suggestions for trouble shooting, or theories as per what might be the problem? I've never had this specific problem before, and I know it wasn't like this when I first got the bike. It's obviously something I did when I switched handlebars / cable / housing, but I can't figure out what that might have been.
eddiearniwhatev is offline  
Old 03-11-18, 10:56 AM
  #2  
Facanh
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Posts: 406
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 118 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I'm not sure if the cable being super tight is a problem.

Think about it. If there is slack in the cable as you pull the lever first it needs to pull the slack out of the cable the cable, and only after that it will start to move the derailleur. If the cable is tight, the derailleur moves instantly. That's how it should work.

What shifter and FD? Stock Microshift bar end and Deore?

Last edited by Facanh; 03-11-18 at 11:02 AM.
Facanh is offline  
Old 03-11-18, 11:21 AM
  #3  
fietsbob 
coprolite
 
fietsbob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: NW,Oregon Coast
Posts: 42,006

Bikes: 8

Mentioned: 190 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7180 Post(s)
Liked 705 Times in 457 Posts
Is friction felt when cable is removed from what it's shifting, by loosening the bolt at the derailleur end?
fietsbob is offline  
Old 03-11-18, 12:44 PM
  #4  
Kontact
Senior Member
 
Kontact's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Posts: 3,595
Mentioned: 32 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2146 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Do you have the cable running to the right spot on the derailleur, do did you put the cable to the bottom of the anchor bolt?

Did you take the burrs off the inside ends of the housing?

Is the housing seated correctly inside the lever?
Kontact is offline  
Old 03-12-18, 09:29 AM
  #5  
Retro Grouch 
Senior Member
 
Retro Grouch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: St Peters, Missouri
Posts: 29,818

Bikes: Catrike 559 I own some others but they don't get ridden very much.

Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1405 Post(s)
Liked 291 Times in 176 Posts
Originally Posted by Kontact View Post
Do you have the cable running to the right spot on the derailleur, do did you put the cable to the bottom of the anchor bolt?

Did you take the burrs off the inside ends of the housing?

Is the housing seated correctly inside the lever?
Check the cable routing where it clamps onto the derailleur. Many front derailleurs have a little finger that looks like the cable should go under it. Don't do that. The shift cable has to go over that finger. It changes the angle of the cable which greatly affects the leverage.
__________________
My greatest fear is all of my kids standing around my coffin and talking about "how sensible" dad was.
Retro Grouch is offline  
Old 03-13-18, 12:06 PM
  #6  
Kapusta
Cyclochondriac
 
Join Date: Feb 2017
Posts: 3,191
Mentioned: 23 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1367 Post(s)
Liked 527 Times in 330 Posts
Have you checked the high limit screw on the deraileur?

The adjustment of it should not need to change with the new handlebars and resulting new cables and housing, but there is a chance that it got tweaked (or the deraileur got moved slightly).

Worth checking.
Kapusta is offline  
Old 03-15-18, 01:25 AM
  #7  
70sSanO
Senior Member
 
70sSanO's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Mission Viejo
Posts: 1,823

Bikes: 1986 Cannondale SR400 (Flat bar commuter), 1988 Cannondale Criterium XTR, 1992 Serotta T-Max, 1995 Trek 970

Mentioned: 7 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 369 Post(s)
Liked 114 Times in 86 Posts
If I read this correctly. You merely changed handlebars... Drops to drops or flat to flat. Also this issue did not exist with your old bars.

You may want to give the info on what shifter/derailleur and the from/to bars. It sounds like it could be a bind of the cable where it is exiting the shifter, on drop routing, due to a different handlebar curve. This should be a non-issue on flat bars.

John
70sSanO is online now  
Old 04-02-18, 08:10 PM
  #8  
eddiearniwhatev
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
That was it exactly. When I put on the new handlebars I passed the cable around the derailleur bolt in the wrong direction, creating just enough friction to make it incredibly hard to engage the lever. Amazing. I bolted the cable on properly, and it worked. Problem solved.
eddiearniwhatev is offline  
Old 04-02-18, 08:32 PM
  #9  
Andrew R Stewart 
Senior Member
 
Andrew R Stewart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Rochester, NY
Posts: 13,481

Bikes: Stewart S&S coupled sport tourer, Stewart Sunday light, Stewart Commuting, Stewart Touring, Co Motion Tandem, Stewart 3-Spd, Stewart Track, Fuji Finest, Raleigh Pro, Trek Cycle Cross, Mongoose tomac ATB, GT Bravado ATB, JCP Folder

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2391 Post(s)
Liked 446 Times in 349 Posts
Originally Posted by eddiearniwhatev View Post
That was it exactly. When I put on the new handlebars I passed the cable around the derailleur bolt in the wrong direction, creating just enough friction to make it incredibly hard to engage the lever. Amazing. I bolted the cable on properly, and it worked. Problem solved.

Just for others reading this thread. Changing the placement of the cable WRT the anchor bolt and it's fitting almost always does not change the cable friction. It does change the leverage that the cable is acting on the der with, as in increasing the power/effort required to move the der. To some this might feel like friction has increased but that would be using the wrong term for what's really happening.


I say this to try to educate and inform that while the sensation might feel somewhat the same the reasons are different and so the fix is also different. Figuring out these differences is part of what makes a good diagnostician. Andy
Andrew R Stewart is offline  
Old 04-04-18, 04:36 PM
  #10  
eddiearniwhatev
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 56
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I guess I could have said that the cable placement created RESISTANCE rather than FRICTION.

So diagnostically it would have been more realistic to report that I observed resistance, which is by all means accurate, and opens up more possibilities than an assumption that it is friction.

Thanks for the correction.
eddiearniwhatev is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
Metis
Bicycle Mechanics
6
10-02-19 06:40 PM
noglider
Bicycle Mechanics
2
07-19-15 07:56 AM
DOS
Bicycle Mechanics
3
06-02-12 07:03 AM
ConstantinosYEA
Bicycle Mechanics
6
04-13-10 06:55 AM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.