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Finding Shimano Service Manuals

Old 04-05-21, 06:00 AM
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johnggold
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Finding Shimano Service Manuals

I am finding that with Shimano in particular it is near impossible to get manuals for older bike components.

I just had an MTB Carrera bike to service. It is fitted with an unusual brake lever/shifter. The model number is ST051-L. This is for the 3-speed left shifter. Unfortunately this one only shifted two out of three.

I was reluctant to strip it down, without a service manual to help put it back together in the correct sequence. It is unique in that there is no built in display, but a wire link to a binnacle display.

Fortunately I sourced a replacement, but it was disappointing to realise that I can get manuals for old components easily but not for Shimano. Is any organisaation managing archives of Shimano components?
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Old 04-05-21, 08:00 AM
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Have you found Shimano's Dealer/consumer service and technical manual web site (https://si.shimano.com/#/ ). It covers almost every Shimano component but I don't know how far back it goes.
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Old 04-05-21, 08:07 AM
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Maybe here. I didn't scroll the entire list. Documents - Shimano (disraeligears.co.uk) Also if you go to the Shimano site enter the series of your part by it's group name, if it has a name, such as Deore XT and it will show the various versions plus an "archive" choice. https://si.shimano.com/
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Old 04-05-21, 08:43 AM
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ST-1055 (-l) perhaps? Yeah, you should be able to find most all those doc's at the Shimano tech doc site. But it'll help to know the series number of the 105 or what ever that part is. DuraAce, Ultegra, 105, Tiagra...... those are not really model numbers. They are more just name for a particular tier level. Much like a '56 Corvette service and parts aren't the same as a 2021 Corvette
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Old 04-05-21, 08:43 AM
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https://si.shimano.com/#/
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Old 04-05-21, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by johnggold View Post
I am finding that with Shimano in particular it is near impossible to get manuals for older bike components.

I just had an MTB Carrera bike to service. It is fitted with an unusual brake lever/shifter. The model number is ST051-L. This is for the 3-speed left shifter. Unfortunately this one only shifted two out of three.

I was reluctant to strip it down, without a service manual to help put it back together in the correct sequence. It is unique in that there is no built in display, but a wire link to a binnacle display.

Fortunately I sourced a replacement, but it was disappointing to realise that I can get manuals for old components easily but not for Shimano. Is any organisaation managing archives of Shimano components?
Would use caution if stripping them down, generally Shimano (and all bike parts) only have limited serviceability, in both availability of parts, and they are often not designed to be user serviced.

The SI that has been linked to above is pretty comprehensive for service manuals, if it isn't there, you're probably not going to find it anywhere else.

One key thing when looking for the manual you want if the correct description of the item, you have have said you have an ST051-L, this should be searched for as the part number is printed/cast into the item (suspect that this is slightly different on our item to what you have written)

One think to look at if you intend to service any Shimano parts, is the cost, generally, for anything below Deore level the cost of any parts will soon be more than a complete replacement unit, even above this level, you need to look at what the condition of your part is vs the cost of just replacing with new

Last edited by jimc101; 04-05-21 at 10:28 AM. Reason: spellling
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Old 04-05-21, 11:56 AM
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I don't agree that there is any such thing as a non-serviceable part. There are just manufacturers who make life so difficult by not producing manuals, that people are forced to buy a replacement.

I volunteer at the local Repair Cafe, where we are constantly repairing non serviceable items, even through Covid.

Once I got the replacement, I disassembled that one, and this has shown where the fault is. Both the binnacle and the main mechanism have faults. The binnacle just sticks a bit. Paradoxically, the binnacle DOES have a Shimano manual.

As I don't need this model, it will go in the winter repair box.

I have been fixing bikes since I was 12, and restoring vintage bikes has been my hobby until Covid came along and I was servicing multiple bikes a day for my local area. So length of time to fix is not a concern.

I should also say that I have been inundated with donations of broken/rusty bikes since my daughter put me on local facebook. These were destined for the local skip, but all have been immediately sold by the Local Red Cross, after I fixed them.

It has become such a throwaway society that bikes are tossed in the skip, whereas the local charity shops can get someone to fix them, and make a good bit of money.

Coming back to Shimano, when not obsolete, Shimano would have had a PDF already on its website. Why remove it?
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Old 04-06-21, 07:06 AM
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shimano tech docx

dealer manuals and all
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Old 04-06-21, 08:47 AM
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Another good source for rebuilding old Shimano brake/shifters is YouTube. Several members here have posted videos for some models and new vids from other YT'ers get posted every so often. You'll likely get much more useful info for working on the shifters from a video than any Shimano manual.
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Old 04-06-21, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by johnggold View Post
I don't agree that there is any such thing as a non-serviceable part. There are just manufacturers who make life so difficult by not producing manuals, that people are forced to buy a replacement.
Can you get the part? if it's not on the SI, your not getting it, so that limits user serviceability, maybe you could find a broken one to salvage from, but often parts are pinned/joined together in a way, so there is no practical/non-destructive way of getting them apart.

Originally Posted by johnggold View Post
It has become such a throwaway society that bikes are tossed in the skip, whereas the local charity shops can get someone to fix them, and make a good bit of money.
Would disagree with this, yes there are a lot of people who want the latest and greatest, but there is also the issue of time and skills, and space, if you lack any of these, it can be more cost effective to sell/dispose and replace a broken bike with a new/working one, no different to other things like cars, if you don't have a co-op/'repair cafe' who can do cheap/free repairs, the cost of repairing a bike in just labor charges will make a new one look really attractive in a very short space of time.

Originally Posted by johnggold View Post
Coming back to Shimano, when not obsolete, Shimano would have had a PDF already on its website. Why remove it?
Guess you have never seen it before/not being using it for long? as currently there are way more documents on there that when it was created (way more than the previous tech docs), nothing has been removed (from my experience, but a lot has been added).

For Shimano and parts availability, as a general rule, 3 generations/10 years, before availability gets poor to non existent, don't even think about it with SRAM, and Campag, chances are they will have everything but the part you need is available.

With any repair, it's a balance between many factors, cost of repair vs replacement, time and availability of parts are all factors, some of which will are out of your hands some with differ between people.
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Old 04-06-21, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by johnggold View Post
I am finding that with Shimano in particular it is near impossible to get manuals for older bike components.

I just had an MTB Carrera bike to service. It is fitted with an unusual brake lever/shifter. The model number is ST051-L. This is for the 3-speed left shifter. Unfortunately this one only shifted two out of three.

I was reluctant to strip it down, without a service manual to help put it back together in the correct sequence. It is unique in that there is no built in display, but a wire link to a binnacle display.

Fortunately I sourced a replacement, but it was disappointing to realise that I can get manuals for old components easily but not for Shimano. Is any organisaation managing archives of Shimano components?
Trigger shift levers all work pretty much the same. Occasionally they get gunked up. To ungunk, spray some aerosol cleaning solvent into the nooks and crannies, and work it in by shifting. If that loosens it up, let it drain and then spray an aerosol lubricant in there, like Tri-Flow or Boeshield T-9. If it doesn't, it's broken. Shop for a replacement.
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Old 04-06-21, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by oldbobcat View Post
Trigger shift levers all work pretty much the same. Occasionally they get gunked up. To ungunk, spray some aerosol cleaning solvent into the nooks and crannies, and work it in by shifting. If that loosens it up, let it drain and then spray an aerosol lubricant in there, like Tri-Flow or Boeshield T-9. If it doesn't, it's broken. Shop for a replacement.
I have already done all that. The binnacle was gunked up, but the shifter mechanism has a partially jammed spring, so when going from 1-2 it shifts correctly. When going from 2-3 the rotation reverses so that the shifter cannot lock. I used the replacement to confirm the correct action.

I cannot understand in an age where everything is being recycled, upcycled that there is such a reluctance to repair. I could possibly understand it if I charged for labour, and needed to make a profit, but neither are my concern. Where is the challenge of just swapping out a part. No fun at all!

I'm assuming that you are in the USA. In the UK we now have a vibrant national organisation of local Repair Cafes where the majority of our work is repairing non serviceable or non-obtainable parts. I don't know if this has spread overseas.
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Old 04-06-21, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by jimc101 View Post
Can you get the part? if it's not on the SI, your not getting it, so that limits user serviceability, maybe you could find a broken one to salvage from, but often parts are pinned/joined together in a way, so there is no practical/non-destructive way of getting them apart.



Would disagree with this, yes there are a lot of people who want the latest and greatest, but there is also the issue of time and skills, and space, if you lack any of these, it can be more cost effective to sell/dispose and replace a broken bike with a new/working one, no different to other things like cars, if you don't have a co-op/'repair cafe' who can do cheap/free repairs, the cost of repairing a bike in just labor charges will make a new one look really attractive in a very short space of time.



Guess you have never seen it before/not being using it for long? as currently there are way more documents on there that when it was created (way more than the previous tech docs), nothing has been removed (from my experience, but a lot has been added).

For Shimano and parts availability, as a general rule, 3 generations/10 years, before availability gets poor to non existent, don't even think about it with SRAM, and Campag, chances are they will have everything but the part you need is available.

With any repair, it's a balance between many factors, cost of repair vs replacement, time and availability of parts are all factors, some of which will are out of your hands some with differ between people.
Last year thousands of people came forward perfectly able to repair bikes locally. Many of them *not including me) were shown on national TV. Plus in the UK there is a huge appetite for vintage anything especially cars, as they lose so much value the moment they leave the showroom.

New bikes are new to me. Before Covid, I only came across them for my kids and grandkids, and the Repair Cafe rarely produced new bikes . I specialise in 1950-1970 road racers. Getting parts lists, parts and interchanging has never been a problem. I even have a Sturmey Archer service book that goes back to before I was born. Thats more than a 10 year limit.
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Old 04-06-21, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by johnggold View Post

New bikes are new to me. Before Covid, I only came across them for my kids and grandkids, and the Repair Cafe rarely produced new bikes . I specialise in 1950-1970 road racers. Getting parts lists, parts and interchanging has never been a problem. I even have a Sturmey Archer service book that goes back to before I was born. Thats more than a 10 year limit.
The Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hub has been around since 1903. The main changes have been to the shifters (a lever or wheel that pulls cable) and the introduction of 4-and 7-speed models. It was a product that was tough as nails, many bikes had them, and it made sense for a shop to keep a drawer full of spare parts because their customer likely intended to use the bike for another 20 years. In the last 30 years flat bar derailleur shifters evolved from ratcheting thumb shifters in 3x6 to twist-grip and trigger shifters in 2x11 or 1x12. These days the MTB technology life cycle is something like four years.

If it's any consolation, Bridgestone resisted trigger shifters for years because their model MTB customer was unsponsored racers and amateur trail riders who would need to do field repairs to finish the ride, and likely couldn't afford a professional mechanic or a new part every time he or she bunged something on the racecourse.
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Old 04-06-21, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by oldbobcat View Post
The Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hub has been around since 1903. The main changes have been to the shifters (a lever or wheel that pulls cable) and the introduction of 4-and 7-speed models. It was a product that was tough as nails, many bikes had them, and it made sense for a shop to keep a drawer full of spare parts because their customer likely intended to use the bike for another 20 years. In the last 30 years flat bar derailleur shifters evolved from ratcheting thumb shifters in 3x6 to twist-grip and trigger shifters in 2x11 or 1x12. These days the MTB technology life cycle is something like four years.

If it's any consolation, Bridgestone resisted trigger shifters for years because their model MTB customer was unsponsored racers and amateur trail riders who would need to do field repairs to finish the ride, and likely couldn't afford a professional mechanic or a new part every time he or she bunged something on the racecourse.
I have no problem with progress, as long as there is a benefit. Twist grip shifters are my pet hate. They are fitted to kids bikes, and some re impossible to use, as an adult, let alone a child. I did try to insert a new cable into one cheap shifter (SRAM) I think, and I was told that even something so simple could not be done.
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Old 04-06-21, 07:03 PM
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Originally Posted by johnggold View Post
Twist grip shifters are my pet hate. They are fitted to kids bikes, and some re impossible to use, as an adult, let alone a child. I did try to insert a new cable into one cheap shifter (SRAM) I think, and I was told that even something so simple could not be done.
I worked with a very senior mechanic who wouldn't even try. He'd twist it a couple times and say, "You need a new shifter." Often, the cost of the shifter was less than the time we'd put into threading a new cable. I just thought of a new way to do it, though, and I can't wait to try it.

A reporter once asked Eddy Merckx what was the greatest improvement in bikes since he retired. Clip-in pedals, he said. These days I just roll with the changes.

You might get a kick out of this site, www.rivbike.com. After he left Bridgestone, Grant Peterson founded Rivendell, a company where he could clast icons to his heart's content.

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Old 04-07-21, 04:17 AM
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Originally Posted by oldbobcat View Post
I worked with a very senior mechanic who wouldn't even try. He'd twist it a couple times and say, "You need a new shifter." Often, the cost of the shifter was less than the time we'd put into threading a new cable. I just thought of a new way to do it, though, and I can't wait to try it.

A reporter once asked Eddy Merckx what was the greatest improvement in bikes since he retired. Clip-in pedals, he said. These days I just roll with the changes.

You might get a kick out of this site, www.rivbike.com. After he left Bridgestone, Grant Peterson founded Rivendell, a company where he could clast icons to his heart's content.
Don't get me wrong. I buy good cables in bulk so it doesn't bother me to change the brake cables as soon as they look a bit rusty. But when you find that a shifter can't be re-cabled, with a cable costing pence, plus you often have to disassemble the handlebar fittings because they have to slide off, then you have to wonder.

Interestingly,, I work in flat glass processing, and the big problem Clients always have is with glass wastage, often at the expense of too much labour. The concept of a saved anywhere in the factory is the same is very hard to teach, because wasted labour is invisible and broken glass is not.

The same applies when labour cost is zero. Now only parts costs are a cost, and for me there is a storage capacity cost. If I can't find a part, I use up storage capacity, and the charity shop loses revenue. I have to keep turning down bikes because I run out of space, and the charity shop rarely needs more than a couple of days before selling them. It was unfortunate in this case that the binnacle design would have meant replacing both left and right brake/shifters. That would have cost about 2/3rds of the eventual selling price.
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