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Cleaning brake shifters

Old 05-01-23, 12:19 PM
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Cleaning brake shifters

I'm replacing my Shimano Ultegra rubber brake hoods, and prior to their arrival: While I have them off, (planning on leaving the shifters in place on the handlebars), with the shifter mechanism exposed, is there a once-and-done cleaner that will work to get any grime off of them, and lubricate at the same time? I've seen recommendations for WD-40 then a soak in mineral oil - for when you have them pulled and are able to place them in a small receptacle - I just do not plan on getting that involved with them.
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Old 05-01-23, 01:24 PM
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Which version? Ultrgra spans pre indexing 7speed to current 10+ speed stuff.

Generally the better the liquid cleans the worse it will lube and visa versa. The more solvent like the liquid is the more you will want to make sure it has drained, evaporated away before adding any lube. Just like a chain cleaning.

If the levers ratchet through their range consistently I would only add a medium weight of an oil to the internals and just wipe off the rest of the levers with a solvent sprayed onto a rag. When was the last time the cables were replaced? Now is a good time to consider that too. Andy
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Old 05-01-23, 01:25 PM
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Here
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Old 05-01-23, 02:32 PM
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Rear shifter cable was replaced just last week - I did not see the internals when it was done.

They shift pretty smoothly - I just didn't want to get the hoods off, then realize I didn't have anything to clean it with if it needed it.
It's an 11-speed Shimano Ultegra 6800.
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Old 05-01-23, 02:34 PM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv
Yeah, I posted the same question in the Road group, because it always seems to be the most-populated one on the site.
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Old 05-01-23, 04:19 PM
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When my left STI lever developed a squeak and slight resistance while shifting the big front lever, I covered the bar tape with paper towel, cling wrap, and masking tape, then sprayed the internal mechanism fairly liberally with this: Amazon.com : DuPont Non-Stick Dry-Film Lubricant Aerosol, 10 oz : Power Tool Lubricants : Sports & Outdoors

After everything dried off, I dripped a few drops of this onto the internal mechanism: Amazon.com : Boeshield T-9 Bicycle Chain Waterproof Lubricant and Rust Protection, 4 oz Liquid, Original Version (122183) , White : Cycling Personal Care Products : Sports & Outdoors
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Old 05-01-23, 05:10 PM
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Originally Posted by travelerman
Rear shifter cable was replaced just last week - I did not see the internals when it was done.

They shift pretty smoothly - I just didn't want to get the hoods off, then realize I didn't have anything to clean it with if it needed it.
It's an 11-speed Shimano Ultegra 6800.
If they're working fine just leave them alone. The best lube job they'll ever see is from the factory and any cleaning will require more frequent lubing from then on. Wait till they stop working perfectly to clean and lube.
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