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Downtube front shifter problem

Old 09-21-19, 11:23 AM
  #1  
le mans
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Downtube front shifter problem

Issue is new to me, It's an index shifter *click click* two clicks, i'm guessing it's a Shimano Exage which goes with the rest of the components. When attempting to select the large chainring the spring in the derailleur pulls it back, won't stay there. Is it stuffed? or can it be serviced or something?
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Old 09-21-19, 12:58 PM
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Tighten the bolt which holds the shifter in place.

Last edited by blamester; 09-21-19 at 01:02 PM.
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Old 09-21-19, 01:53 PM
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Yep..already done that..tight as she goes...still slips hey.
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Old 09-21-19, 02:13 PM
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Find the shifter on Shimano tech docs. Take it apart and compare it to the diagram.
Maybe a missing part or wrong size bolt.
Is it index and friction compatible.
Because really index is unessecary on a double.
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Old 09-21-19, 03:13 PM
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Cheers i'll look it up. The shifter for the rear can be adjusted for either index or friction, i thought the front was friction at first to be honest, but there is a definite click, forward and back.
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Old 09-21-19, 03:36 PM
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Not much joy finding a diagram. it's an A351. an ebay seller reckons it's index & friction compatible
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Old 09-21-19, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by le mans View Post
Yep..already done that..tight as she goes...still slips hey.
Did you use an unworn screwdriver with a tip large enough to fill the screw slot and a handle which fills your hand? Anything else and you may not have it tight enough. If that doesn't do it, disassemble carefully documenting your parts order and orientation and check for broken washers, etc.
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Old 09-21-19, 04:48 PM
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Originally Posted by le mans View Post
Issue is new to me, It's an index shifter *click click* two clicks, i'm guessing it's a Shimano Exage which goes with the rest of the components. When attempting to select the large chainring the spring in the derailleur pulls it back, won't stay there. Is it stuffed? or can it be serviced or something?
Is it a downtube shifter or is it a shifter that mounts on the handle bar and moves forwards and backwards? I had a bike with the Exage shifters on the drop handlebar and the front one was a bear to adjust properly. Even the angle of the shifter on the handlebar affected the shifting. Check your derailleur outer limit bolt and see if it's far enough out. Try pulling on the shiftercable alone to shift to the big ring. If that works then you know the problem is in the shifter or it's position. Here's an image of the bike I had with the handlebar mounted Exage "Rocker*" shifter. (*my term).



Cheers
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Old 09-22-19, 03:54 AM
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Originally Posted by dsbrantjr View Post
Did you use an unworn screwdriver with a tip large enough to fill the screw slot and a handle which fills your hand?

Yes

Anything else and you may not have it tight enough. If that doesn't do it, disassemble carefully documenting your parts order and orientation and check for broken washers, etc.
I'm having difficulties figuring out how to pull it apart, the guts that is

Last edited by le mans; 09-22-19 at 04:02 AM.
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Old 09-22-19, 04:02 AM
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Miele, The limit screw is set and i pulled the cable by hand, it gets there but just doesn't want to stay there.
Interesting bar shifters you got, I've only seen different models thumb shifters on Schwinn Prelude bikes.
ATM i've tried out a downtube shifter that used to be on my Record bike, friction.. and it works fine, problem is it's black, doesn't match the other side as i'll be selling the bike.

I'd like to know how to make this problem shifter friction.
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Old 09-22-19, 04:17 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by blamester View Post
Find the shifter on Shimano tech docs. Take it apart and compare it to the diagram.
Not likely on that old of Shimano.

Older Shimano DT index shifters are known for breaking index tabs.

https://cimg9.ibsrv.net/gimg/bikefor...dfac339171.jpg
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Old 09-22-19, 10:22 AM
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OOPS! Missed the "downtube" in the title when I read the post.

I've NEVER heard of a Shimano downtube front shifter being indexed. The only thing I can think of is that perhaps the chainrings are too far out for the shifter. What's interesting is that you can pull the shifter over by hand aby pulling on the cable yet if pulls back on its own.

Can you post an image of the shifter?

If the shifter is not holding the derailleur in place then there's a lack of friction somewhere. Do you have the boss that goes between the shifter and the downtube?

Is the mounting bolt too long?

That's all I can think of at the moment that might be causing the problem unless you're missing a washer under the bolt than mounts the shifter.


How many speeds is the rear shifter for? I might have a friction front shifter that'd match if I knew what colour yours are.

Good luck and cheers
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Old 09-22-19, 10:22 AM
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Try backing off the high limit screw about 1/8 to 1/4 turn. If the limit screw is too tight it will precent the shifter from reaching it's detent and it won't hold the shifter in the high gear position.
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Old 09-22-19, 12:30 PM
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Just checked the 7 speed Exage DT shifters on the Bottecchia and mine are the later, completely sealed units that came out after 7400 and 6208 (both of those front shifters used a multi-part assembly including friction disks and washers). On these later units there are no tangs to break and tightening the bolt down beyond simply ensuring that it is correctly mounted using the interstitial boss does not increase the resistance.

None of the sealed unit front DT shifters I have in the fleet (1050, 1051, 7402, 7700, 7850, 7900) have any detents. They all work smoothly from the top to the bottom of the range.

As mentioned in your initial post, yours may be damaged.

Are there any other contributing circumstances to how it's working- recent removal, repair, crash damage, etc?
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Old 09-22-19, 12:38 PM
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I've NEVER heard of a Shimano downtube front shifter being indexed. The only thing I can think of is that perhaps the chainrings are too far out for the shifter. What's interesting is that you can pull the shifter over by hand aby pulling on the cable yet if pulls back on its own.

According to an ebay ad description {same model shifter} it says index/friction compatible
The crank is what was used on the bike originally, Biopace Exage, The shifter I used from my Record bike holds up though.. not a problem, and isn't over tightened on the boss

Can you post an image of the shifter?





Is it missing something?


How many speeds is the rear shifter for? I might have a friction front shifter that'd match if I knew what colour yours are.

6 speed for the rear. I'd simply use the seven speed shifter [replace the freewheel, wouldn't have to dish the wheel] from my Record bike also, but I want to leave it original. Olympic "12", Three of the same model were on the market recently and sold anywhere from 250-$300, they must be collectable, they were over $1000 when new. and they were pink too Lol

Solid bike, was a pleasure to tune in the rear derailleur, just set the stops and only needed to turn the barrel adjuster out a couple of turns and she's done.




Good luck and cheers

Thx
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Old 09-22-19, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by rccardr View Post
Just checked the 7 speed Exage DT shifters on the Bottecchia and mine are the later, completely sealed units that came out after 7400 and 6208 (both of those front shifters used a multi-part assembly including friction disks and washers). On these later units there are no tangs to break and tightening the bolt down beyond simply ensuring that it is correctly mounted using the interstitial boss does not increase the resistance.

None of the sealed unit front DT shifters I have in the fleet (1050, 1051, 7402, 7700, 7850, 7900) have any detents. They all work smoothly from the top to the bottom of the range.

As mentioned in your initial post, yours may be damaged.

Are there any other contributing circumstances to how it's working- recent removal, repair, crash damage, etc?
This frame came with other road bike frames a fella gave away, it only had the derailleurs and shifters on it, so i don't know the history.
So they're a sealed unit hey?! thanks for the info & it could well be stuffed.
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Old 09-22-19, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Retro Grouch View Post
Try backing off the high limit screw about 1/8 to 1/4 turn. If the limit screw is too tight it will precent the shifter from reaching it's detent and it won't hold the shifter in the high gear position.
Yep, i was fiddling around with that before, That other shifter works.. so that Exage one must be stuffed {pity}
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Old 09-22-19, 06:57 PM
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From what i can tell the shift lever is silver. Is that correct? I'll look in my parts bins and see if I have a spare silver front shifter. If I do though, it'd be strictly friction not indexed. Would that be okay for you? If it is and I find it I'll post an image of it in this thread so you can decide if it'd meet your needs/wants colour wise.

Cheers
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Old 09-23-19, 12:26 AM
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Yeah.. an aluminum finish, Miele. and friction is prefered. I did up a similar bike Exage group set and that was friction for the FD

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Old 09-25-19, 09:45 AM
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I had 7 speed Exage Biopace on a Bianchi several years ago but don't remember the exact configuration. It was my first index shift bike, but only on the rear as I recall. This may not apply to you, but a recently acquired Peugeot with Simplex shifters had a front downtube shifter that always kept slipping. I kept tightening the black plastic thumb screw, afraid I would break it. I finally removed the thumb screw, and put a thin split lock washer between the screw and the lever. Worked like a charm, it hasn't slipped since. I'm not a fan of down tube shifters, but this Peugeot was mostly original, so I tried to keep it as is.

When I bought the bike it was missing the front cable, and the broken Simplex front derailleur. Funnily, I replaced the broken FD with a Shimamo Exage, which worked perfectly, with the Simplex set-up.

Exage front, Simplex rear, Stronglight crank, kind of Franken-French, but it works.

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Old 09-25-19, 10:36 AM
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Here's the link to all of the shimano documentation for your downtube shifters:
https://si.shimano.com/#/en/search/Keyword?name=A351 .

All of the documentation states that they are index or friction. However, they need to be partially dismantled to change modes. There is also a blow up pdf parts list but I don't think it will help much. Good luck.
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Old 09-25-19, 03:41 PM
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Like your bike anyway, Slight, and good thinking there
Fliddling around with it on another frame, passed WD-40 through both ends of the sealed unit and she works now, good solid shifts
so.. she's serviceable!

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