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Replacement for Shimano Acera M391 brake+shifter unit (9 speed)

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Replacement for Shimano Acera M391 brake+shifter unit (9 speed)

Old 06-09-23, 03:19 AM
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Replacement for Shimano Acera M391 brake+shifter unit (9 speed)

The Shimano rear shifter on my hybrid seems to be worn in that the gears don't change well any more, and haven't done even after replacing the cable. The shifter and V-brake is a single unit. It seems peculiarly hard to get a replacement integrated unit. Any ideas? Do I get separate shifter and V-brake, taking to account there is precious zero space left on the handlebars? And which Shimano range - there is Deore, CUES, Acera, EZ Fires Plus, but some of these I read are being discontinued? I have no idea which is decent, I certainly don't want worse than the existing Acera brake/shifter and Deore derailleur that I have.
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Old 06-09-23, 04:07 AM
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Tried spraying wd40 into the shifter?

Old dry/hard grease in shifters can stop them working properly.
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Old 06-09-23, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by drb01
The Shimano rear shifter on my hybrid seems to be worn in that the gears don't change well any more, and haven't done even after replacing the cable. The shifter and V-brake is a single unit. It seems peculiarly hard to get a replacement integrated unit. Any ideas? Do I get separate shifter and V-brake, taking to account there is precious zero space left on the handlebars? And which Shimano range - there is Deore, CUES, Acera, EZ Fires Plus, but some of these I read are being discontinued? I have no idea which is decent, I certainly don't want worse than the existing Acera brake/shifter and Deore derailleur that I have.
Was the cable housing also replaced or just the inner cable?
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Old 06-09-23, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by SoSmellyAir
Was the cable housing also replaced or just the inner cable?
just the cable, although the housing was replaced a couple of years ago too. the shifting just seem to be getting slowly worse, hence my suspicion that the shifter is wearing (if they actually do wear?). I am happy to replace it. Just seems hard to find something equivalent with a built in brake lever
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Old 06-09-23, 12:38 PM
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It doesn't have to be Acera, just Shimano compatible for hybrid/MB.
https://www.amazon.com/SHIMANO-ST-EF...11691650&psc=1
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Old 06-09-23, 12:42 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun
It doesn't have to be Acera, just Shimano compatible for hybrid/MB.
https://www.amazon.com/SHIMANO-ST-EF...11691650&psc=1
I don't think that works with V-brakes? Also I'd want to get one that isn't bottom of the range, so preferably better than Acera (I doubt Acera was particularly good either frankly!)
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Old 06-09-23, 12:53 PM
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Originally Posted by drb01
I don't think that works with V-brakes? Also I'd want to get one that isn't bottom of the range, so preferably better than Acera (I doubt Acera was particularly good either frankly!)
Having one bike with canti's and one with V, it's near impossible to find one that ISN'T V brake only.
The Acera on my hybrid has been working fine for the last 11 years, but if you want to make it difficult on yourself, be my guest.
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Old 06-09-23, 01:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun
Having one bike with canti's and one with V, it's near impossible to find one that ISN'T V brake only.
The Acera on my hybrid has been working fine for the last 11 years, but if you want to make it difficult on yourself, be my guest.
Sorry but I'm very much learning my way here and certainly don't want to make things difficult! The listing doesn't seem to say in the description that it's V-brakes and in the questions someone says it is definitely not V-brakes.
I've also had my Trek 7.4 for 11 years, but the gears seem to have been struggling for a while now, despite regular new cassettes / chains etc
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Old 06-09-23, 01:20 PM
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Originally Posted by drb01
The Shimano rear shifter on my hybrid seems to be worn in that the gears don't change well any more, and haven't done even after replacing the cable. The shifter and V-brake is a single unit. It seems peculiarly hard to get a replacement integrated unit. Any ideas? Do I get separate shifter and V-brake, taking to account there is precious zero space left on the handlebars? And which Shimano range - there is Deore, CUES, Acera, EZ Fires Plus, but some of these I read are being discontinued? I have no idea which is decent, I certainly don't want worse than the existing Acera brake/shifter and Deore derailleur that I have.
here's a recommendation .. run a search.. Similar 3x9 Pairs and right or left MTB Brifters are EASILY LOCATED and Purchased from multiple outlets. Ebay, Jenson, Amazone... etc.
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Old 06-09-23, 01:22 PM
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I had a good experience with Sunrace ST-M930 (it was paired with Tiagra 4603 RD).
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Old 06-09-23, 01:23 PM
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Not experienced with MTB components at all. But the ST-EF510 appears to be what you might be looking for - Acera-level, 9-speed, and the DM says they "are equipped with a mechanism to make them compatible with V-BRAKE brakes, which contain a power modulator, cantilever and roller brakes."

https://bike.shimano.com/en-EU/produ...F510-9R2A.html

The older ST-EF65 (9-speed version) might also be workable, and is still available from some sources. I believe (but won't swear) that those are also V-Brake compatible.
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Old 06-09-23, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by drb01
Sorry but I'm very much learning my way here and certainly don't want to make things difficult! The listing doesn't seem to say in the description that it's V-brakes and in the questions someone says it is definitely not V-brakes.
I've also had my Trek 7.4 for 11 years, but the gears seem to have been struggling for a while now, despite regular new cassettes / chains etc
LUBE THE SHIFTERS with PB Blaster or (not my fav) wd-40... wait a few minutes, then operate the shifters while the chain is not on the sprockets... Remove the rear wheel to get the chain off those sprockets... derail the chain to the inside of the front sprockets.
the problem is USUALLY old, stiff, grease making the tiny parts in the shifter get stuck to each other...

PS.. i just now completed this "repair" to a 3x8 shifter/brake pair... the 3x side was not working at all... i lubed and operated both sides.

i carefully removed the tiny philips screws(do this ONLY over a hard floor surface with no cracks, they Love to get lost!) then i spray the PB blaster into theshift mech... i then carefully move the spring loaded pawls with a tiny screwdriver until they easily move and snap into position by themselves.. i then operate the shifters dozens of times before replacing the cover and those tiny screws that Love to get lost.


TIP: If the shifter cover is on the bottom of an older style brifter or shifter, I loosen and rotate the shifter cover to the TOP before working on it... and i NEVER do this over a cracked, dirt, or gravel surface, or in a dark area where finding those Expert Hider screws will be impossible if they get dropped..

Last edited by maddog34; 06-09-23 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 06-09-23, 01:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun
It doesn't have to be Acera, just Shimano compatible for hybrid/MB.
https://www.amazon.com/SHIMANO-ST-EF...11691650&psc=1
Originally Posted by drb01
I don't think that works with V-brakes? Also I'd want to get one that isn't bottom of the range, so preferably better than Acera (I doubt Acera was particularly good either frankly!)
drb01 may be right; the one linked by Bill Kapaun appears to be for hydraulic brakes:

Shimano Altus ST-EF505-9R 9-Speed Right EZ-Fire Plus Shift/Brake Lever for Hydraulic Disc Brake, Black - Modern Bike

However, this one is Acera and for B-brakes:

Shimano Acera ST-EF65-9R 9-Speed Right EZ-Fire Plus Shift | Components | Shimano | PlanetCyclery.com
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Old 06-09-23, 02:18 PM
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Good catch. I forget about hydraulic brakes.
In limited experience, I found the EF-65's shift a little more precise vs the EF-51's.
A canti braked version also works with V brakes. I've not seen a canti braked only version.


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Old 06-09-23, 02:30 PM
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May I ask as to why you're going back to brifters?
Why not just buy a shifter and then use a brake lever of your choice?
https://www.ebay.com/itm/363825624242?
Buy a pair.
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Old 06-09-23, 02:46 PM
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This is the set up I have going on on my 1x9 (work in progress)
I can run the shifters need with the levers I prefer.

Last edited by Schweinhund; 06-09-23 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 06-09-23, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Schweinhund
May I ask as to why you're going back to brifters?
Why not just buy a shifter and then use a brake lever of your choice?
Simply because there is zero space left on the handle bars, and I assume separate components will need extra space..
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Old 06-09-23, 04:14 PM
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Originally Posted by drb01
Simply because there is zero space left on the handle bars, and I assume separate components will need extra space..
My set up is about 3cm wide at the bar. But you don't have to use the levers I do, these are narrower a the bar by about a third and the reach is adjustable.
https://bike.shimano.com/en-EU/produ...0/BL-4700.html
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