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Help with downtube shifters

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Help with downtube shifters

Old 03-17-18, 05:34 PM
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voyager1
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Help with downtube shifters

Okay I have a question with the down tube shifters on my Trek 1200. What exactly does the left and right ones do. The right one makes little clicking sounds and the one on the left side does not. Is the left one always supposed to either be all the way up or all the way down with the right one being clicked each time?

Sorry if this such a noob question, it is these shifters aren't like my mountain bike at all.
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Old 03-17-18, 05:38 PM
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Right is indexed to match the number of sprockets on the cassette/freewheel, and the left is friction so you can make adjustments for chain rub.

And some MTBs are the same way.
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Old 03-17-18, 07:46 PM
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I just realized....

...I am the same as the OP, but opposite... MTBs are aliens.
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Old 03-17-18, 08:31 PM
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'91 Antelope? Push-button Rapidfire?

The left shifter is for the fronts, and it's pretty much all the way 'up or down' unless, you're running the
'big-big' or 'small-small' combination or like that, so you can 'trim' by moving the FD slightly so the cage doesn't rub on the chain.

The right lever is for the rear derailleur, does it click 5-6 distinct times or lots of little tiny clicks?
Some '90s shimano levers an index mode where one click corresponds to a gear position, and a friction mode that's really a 'micro-ratchet' that has lots of tiny clicks. Good if you're using a non-shimano derailleur, or an older non-indexed shimano. Early 90's bikes still weren't all on the 'group-set' model of equipment yet.
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Old 03-17-18, 09:36 PM
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As mentioned, the left one does your front derailleur. If it has 2 sprockets, then yes, all the way forward will be low tension, and drop the chain to the small sprocket and be easiest to pedal.

All the way back will pull the chain to the large sprocket, and be the hardest to pedal.

If there is a third sprocket, then you may choose an intermediate spot for that one.

If you're cross-chained, then you may experience some chain rub, and adjust your derailleur appropriately to eliminate the chain rub. This is why not every stop has a "click".

As also mentioned above, the right one is for the rear derailleur. All the way forward will be a loose cable, and should drop you into the smallest rear sprocket, or hardest gear. Pull it back, and you should incrementally shift to the rest of the sprockets.
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Old 03-18-18, 03:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Ironfish653 View Post
'91 Antelope? Push-button Rapidfire?

The left shifter is for the fronts, and it's pretty much all the way 'up or down' unless, you're running the
'big-big' or 'small-small' combination or like that, so you can 'trim' by moving the FD slightly so the cage doesn't rub on the chain.

The right lever is for the rear derailleur, does it click 5-6 distinct times or lots of little tiny clicks?
Some '90s shimano levers an index mode where one click corresponds to a gear position, and a friction mode that's really a 'micro-ratchet' that has lots of tiny clicks. Good if you're using a non-shimano derailleur, or an older non-indexed shimano. Early 90's bikes still weren't all on the 'group-set' model of equipment yet.
Oh no the 850 I got down pretty good. I have now ridden the 1200 road bike about 3 times I am getting better with the shifters, though I sometimes forget the brakes are on the drops.
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Old 03-18-18, 03:25 PM
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Originally Posted by voyager1 View Post
Oh no the 850 I got down pretty good. I have now ridden the 1200 road bike about 3 times I am getting better with the shifters, though I sometimes forget the brakes are on the drops.
The brakes are also "on" the hoods.



But if it really bothers you there are interrupter levers to add breaking from the tops.
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Old 03-18-18, 04:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact View Post
But if it really bothers you there are interrupter levers to add breaking from the tops.
Am I the only person who thinks those things are:
A: Ugly
B: Verging on pointless
C: Likely to be temperamental as heck
D: A waste of time & money

?

Unless you're screaming along on the tops all the time, in which case don't use drop bars...
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Old 03-18-18, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by tonyfourdogs View Post
Am I the only person who thinks those things are:
A: Ugly
B: Verging on pointless
C: Likely to be temperamental as heck
D: A waste of time & money

?

Unless you're screaming along on the tops all the time, in which case don't use drop bars...
They are cheap and work fine. They are better than switching to a flat bar. I can certainly think of uglier cycling trends, and you can remove these easily if you aren't using them.
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Old 03-18-18, 06:40 PM
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Originally Posted by voyager1 View Post
Oh no the 850 I got down pretty good. I have now ridden the 1200 road bike about 3 times I am getting better with the shifters,
Keep at it and it will eventually be like playing a trombone--you'll just know where it is.
Jon
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