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How do downtube shifters wear out?

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How do downtube shifters wear out?

Old 08-26-18, 01:33 PM
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How do downtube shifters wear out?

Out of curiosity, how do those things wear out? They seem pretty long lasting but I think there's a point in life when they give up... or don't they?
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Old 08-26-18, 01:43 PM
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I have some more than 40 years old still working fine.
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Old 08-26-18, 01:45 PM
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Need to be a bit more specific as to brand and age.
Friction levers rarely die. But some can be temperamental if assembled with or without lubrication depending on the design.
Index shifters or retrofriction shifters can get very specific.
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Old 08-26-18, 02:09 PM
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They're made to last as long as they've lasted, except for defects, like the 6200 early series indexed.

However, every part wears if in contact with something, eventually. I'm going to assume indexed shifters can and do.

After all, Campy Ergos wear out and can be rebuilt. Almost as if they knew it would happen!

I have unfinished business.

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Old 08-26-18, 02:32 PM
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They give up when people upgrade to brifters otherwise they keep working forever YMMV

Last edited by ryansu; 08-26-18 at 02:36 PM.
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Old 08-26-18, 02:52 PM
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Well the Chorus (I think) ones on my Greg Lemond Maillot Jaune wore out by the spings weakening. It would ghost shift when I really got on it. I was told that the current Ergo Lever springs would work of it and that's what I "fixed" it with. Only it didn't fix it. Turns out you do need the older ones which were stiffer. Once I sourced the right ones the DT shifter started working perfectly. But these also can fail when the indexing ring wears out too.

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Old 08-26-18, 03:08 PM
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My old bike came with slotted Campagnolo shifters similar to this.

I'm not sure if it was a factory option, or a "drillium" aftermarket option.

However, over time, both sides eventually flexed, bent, and broke.

They were replaced with levers without the cutout. In fact, I think I still have two left levers, and no right levers on the bike. Someday I'll get all the parts together at the same time I wear out a derailleur cable, and get the right lever installed.
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Old 08-26-18, 05:39 PM
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I used the shifter so much for the rear derailleur on my Motobecane Gran Jubile that I wore through the casting where the cable end sits and had to switch levers from side to side. It's presently still only a five speed. Anybody know where I can get a replacement rear lever for the Huret shifter?
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Old 08-26-18, 05:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Nate998 View Post
Out of curiosity, how do those things wear out? They seem pretty long lasting but I think there's a point in life when they give up... or don't they?
All (that I have heard of anyway) have given up when they were confronted with climbing out of a dumpster.

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Old 08-26-18, 07:37 PM
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They don’t! Worst case, may have to replace a bushing or two.
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