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What to do with Tiagra 4600 shifter?

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What to do with Tiagra 4600 shifter?

Old 06-20-20, 04:21 PM
  #1  
drewfidelic
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What to do with Tiagra 4600 shifter?

The rear shift cable snapped on my 2013 Trek 1.5 road bike recently. Replacing the shift cable is generally an easy repair, but I managed to get it jammed into the shift lever. While trying to make this work, I broke off the gear indicator lever. My first thought was just to replace the shift lever, but thatís proved more difficult than I expected. I had been planning on replacing this bike with a higher-quality road bike soon, but I would strongly prefer to keep this one going through this year.

My bike has Tiagra 10-speed 4600 components, which are long discontinued. Fortunately, Shimano components are generally compatible across series, except that Tiagra 4600 and 4700 are not compatible, because they use different cable-pull ratios. But I still have a few options, and I feel lost among them:

1. Just take bike into my local shop, because someone who knows what theyíre doing could take apart the shifter and just fix it. The drawback to this is that if they canít fix this part, Iím paying for both the replacement part(s) and labor. More importantly, because of the huge demand for biking and keeping their staff safe during COVID, there are long delays in service.

2. Buy a replacement (used or new) Tiagra 4600 shifter on EBay or Aliexpress.
Drawback: used equipment likely has more wear and tear. Shipping from China is slow and leaves my bike out of commission. Pro: the easiest and most straightforward fix.

3. Buy a replacement compatible 3rd party Microshift R10 shifter. Pro: inexpensive, arrives quickly, least work. Cons: the few reviews Iíve seen indicate that the Microshift gear isnít quite up to the same quality as the Shimano gear.

4. Buy a set of 105 5700 shifters. More work to install (because they route the shift cable under the bar tape, Iíd definitely want to replace both at once.) Doesnít require replacing any other mechanical equipment, because theyíre compatible with the rest of the equipment on not bike, but is not cheap (the best I seem to find are around $200 for a pair).

5. Buy Tiagra 4700 shifters and derailleurs. These seem to be discontinued at most bike shops and Iíd have to go to Aliexpress to get cheaply (and wait). If Iím investing in this bike, this at least refreshes some components at around the same price as just the 10-speed 105 shifters.

6. Invest significant money into this bike and get new wheels and an 11-speed 105 7000 groupset. This has the advantage of actually improving my bike at more cost. Is it worth investing this much money into an unremarkable 7-year old aluminum bike or am I better off doing a cheap fix and saving up my money to just invest in a new bike?
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Old 06-20-20, 04:38 PM
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AeroGut
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Whatís wrong with the shifter? Could be an easy flush and lube to get it back online.
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Old 06-20-20, 05:16 PM
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Crankycrank
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Originally Posted by AeroGut View Post
Whatís wrong with the shifter? Could be an easy flush and lube to get it back online.
+1, try this first. If no luck another option is the Gavenalle shifters. Also $200 but they'll be brand new. https://www.gevenalle.com/product/cx2/
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Old 06-20-20, 05:33 PM
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I haven't used Microshift shifters but I have had good experience with their derailleurs and they seem to be a good price/performance value. YMMV.
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Old 06-20-20, 05:42 PM
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Flush and relube first and see if that helps. Otherwise, Shimano road shifters aren't really intended to be serviced and most mechanics won't try (I won't, either). If everything else is in OK shape, I'd just buy some used shifters that had relatively light cosmetic wear--they typically last a pretty long time. If only one shifter is gone and the other seems OK, I'd probably source an exact used replacement to keep costs down.

Unless most of the parts are pretty significantly worn I wouldn't bother trying to upgrade to 11 speed--I'm all for 11 (and 12!) speeds, but an extra cog isn't magic and isn't worth the replacement cost if most parts are OK. If you do decide to upgrade, I'd probably recommend 5800 or R7000 (105 level). You can keep your current wheels if you use an 11-34 cassette.

Microshift shifters are honestly fairly nice but they work differently than Shimano--they have two small shift levers, a little bit like Campagnolo.
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Old 06-21-20, 05:44 PM
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drewfidelic
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Thanks for the encouragement. I managed to get the piece of the old cable that was preventing the shifter from moving. All is well, and I can continue without replacing any major components on this bike.
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Old 06-21-20, 06:58 PM
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Microshifts gets mixed reviews. A discerning friend has it and likes it just fine. I wouldn't be afraid. I write this for the record, knowing that you've solved this problem. I might face it, too. I have the previous Tiagra on my bike, a 3x9 drivetrain. The rear shifter is less eager to shift to higher gears (smaller cogs) but I suspect a cable change will fix this. But I still ran through all the various machinations, many of which are expensive.
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