Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Classic & Vintage
Reload this Page >

Need help with vintage Shimano 3 speed shifter.

Notices
Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

Need help with vintage Shimano 3 speed shifter.

Old 06-11-19, 08:57 AM
  #1  
riverdrifter
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
riverdrifter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 465

Bikes: Trek 620, Jamis Satellite Sport, Raleigh Sport

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 151 Post(s)
Liked 139 Times in 66 Posts
Need help with vintage Shimano 3 speed shifter.




I'm not sure if this shifter is missing a part, or has a piece broken off. The cable keeps popping out, it stays connected, but the barrel end slips out. I've searched and can't find one like this. I figured it would be a pretty common item. Could someone link me to a suitable replacement? Thanks!
riverdrifter is offline  
Old 06-11-19, 09:43 AM
  #2  
dweenk 
Senior Member
 
dweenk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,866

Bikes: Lots of English 3-speeds, a couple of old road bikes, 3 mountain bikes, 1 hybrid, and a couple of mash-ups

Mentioned: 51 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 848 Post(s)
Liked 257 Times in 183 Posts
It appears that part of the plastic housing has broken off. A coop or ebay may your best chance to find one. I think that is the "333" model.
__________________
I hope...that all mankind will at length…have reason and sense enough to settle their differences without cutting throats. Ben Franklin
dweenk is offline  
Likes For dweenk:
Old 06-11-19, 12:30 PM
  #3  
noobinsf 
Senior Member
 
noobinsf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 3,017

Bikes: '82 Univega Competizione, '72 Motobecane Grand Record, '83 Mercian KOM Touring, '85 Univega Alpina Uno, '76 Eisentraut Limited

Mentioned: 54 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 982 Post(s)
Liked 956 Times in 577 Posts
Is it a friction shifter? If so, is that plate with the numbers and “3 speed” a separate part? Maybe you could swap out that plate with a Sunrace thumb shifter, like the one linked below and have a new shifter with the old look. I have no idea if the dimensions are same, but for $7, it may be worth a shot. At worst, you have a new Sunrace shifter that works.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Sunrace...-/362631435140
noobinsf is offline  
Likes For noobinsf:
Old 06-11-19, 12:47 PM
  #4  
Kuromori
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 528
Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 237 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 83 Times in 64 Posts
IGH shifters are index. I would be tempted to just try to epoxy a cable ferrule in the right spot and build it up with epoxy.
Kuromori is offline  
Likes For Kuromori:
Old 06-11-19, 12:50 PM
  #5  
dweenk 
Senior Member
 
dweenk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Maryland
Posts: 3,866

Bikes: Lots of English 3-speeds, a couple of old road bikes, 3 mountain bikes, 1 hybrid, and a couple of mash-ups

Mentioned: 51 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 848 Post(s)
Liked 257 Times in 183 Posts
Originally Posted by noobinsf View Post
Is it a friction shifter? If so, is that plate with the numbers and “3 speed” a separate part? Maybe you could swap out that plate with a Sunrace thumb shifter, like the one linked below and have a new shifter with the old look. I have no idea if the dimensions are same, but for $7, it may be worth a shot. At worst, you have a new Sunrace shifter that works.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Sunrace...-/362631435140
The OP's shifter is indexed, each click moves the cable a certain distance. While a friction shifter will work in theory, it will be damned hard to locate the "sweet spot" for the gear change.
__________________
I hope...that all mankind will at length…have reason and sense enough to settle their differences without cutting throats. Ben Franklin
dweenk is offline  
Likes For dweenk:
Old 06-11-19, 12:57 PM
  #6  
noobinsf 
Senior Member
 
noobinsf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Oakland, CA
Posts: 3,017

Bikes: '82 Univega Competizione, '72 Motobecane Grand Record, '83 Mercian KOM Touring, '85 Univega Alpina Uno, '76 Eisentraut Limited

Mentioned: 54 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 982 Post(s)
Liked 956 Times in 577 Posts
Originally Posted by dweenk View Post
The OP's shifter is indexed, each click moves the cable a certain distance. While a friction shifter will work in theory, it will be damned hard to locate the "sweet spot" for the gear change.
Whoops, got it - I’ve never used one of these. Yes, that complicates things.
noobinsf is offline  
Likes For noobinsf:
Old 06-11-19, 02:33 PM
  #7  
PatTheSlat 
Senior Member
 
PatTheSlat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Youngstown, OH
Posts: 636

Bikes: '63 Schwinn American, '64 DL-1, '65 Schwinn Racer, '73 Super Course, '83 Voyageur SP, '89 Miyata 914, '03 EZ-1, '13 Raleigh i8 Folder

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 42 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 24 Posts
You can fix this temporarily by zip tying the cable to the handlebars.

I'm surprisingly not seeing much on ebay for replacements- I have a lot of 3 speed parts, I will check my parts bins when I get home and see if I have an extra one I could sell.
PatTheSlat is offline  
Likes For PatTheSlat:
Old 06-11-19, 02:37 PM
  #8  
riverdrifter
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
riverdrifter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 465

Bikes: Trek 620, Jamis Satellite Sport, Raleigh Sport

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 151 Post(s)
Liked 139 Times in 66 Posts
Originally Posted by PatTheSlat View Post
You can fix this temporarily by zip tying the cable to the handlebars.

I'm surprisingly not seeing much on ebay for replacements- I have a lot of 3 speed parts, I will check my parts bins when I get home and see if I have an extra one I could sell.
Thank you! I've been searching ebay and other online sites for 2 days and haven't come up with much.
riverdrifter is offline  
Old 06-11-19, 04:23 PM
  #9  
gna
Count Orlok Member
 
gna's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: St. Paul, MN
Posts: 1,655

Bikes: Raleigh Sports, Raleigh Twenty, Raleigh Wyoming, Schwinn Le Tour Luxe Frankenbike

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 41 Post(s)
Liked 47 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by Kuromori View Post
IGH shifters are index. I would be tempted to just try to epoxy a cable ferrule in the right spot and build it up with epoxy.
Those shifters are cheap and available from coops and recyclers. I wouldn't bother.
gna is offline  
Old 06-11-19, 04:42 PM
  #10  
JaccoW
Overdoing projects
 
JaccoW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Rotterdam, former republic of the Netherlands
Posts: 2,281

Bikes: Batavus Randonneur GL, Gazelle Orange Excellent, Gazelle Super Licht, Gazelle Grand Tourist, Gazelle Lausanne, Gazelle Tandem, Koga-Miyata SilverAce, Koga-Miyata WorldTraveller

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 732 Post(s)
Liked 974 Times in 569 Posts
Aren't these compatible with Sturmey Archer 3-speed shifters?
JaccoW is offline  
Old 06-11-19, 04:48 PM
  #11  
PatTheSlat 
Senior Member
 
PatTheSlat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Youngstown, OH
Posts: 636

Bikes: '63 Schwinn American, '64 DL-1, '65 Schwinn Racer, '73 Super Course, '83 Voyageur SP, '89 Miyata 914, '03 EZ-1, '13 Raleigh i8 Folder

Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 42 Post(s)
Liked 34 Times in 24 Posts
Originally Posted by riverdrifter View Post
Thank you! I've been searching ebay and other online sites for 2 days and haven't come up with much.
The good news: I have four of these shifters. The bad news: Every one of them is broken in the same way as yours.

After scouring ebay, I can find ONE listing for under $50, and it's the older style that uses a thread-in ferrule on the end of the cable: https://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Shi...UAAOSwWEhc4Idv

I had absolutely no idea these had become this scarce, and I'm surprised no one is doing 3d-printed replacements. Your best bet might be to go with a zip-tie for now, and hit up some co-ops or older bike shops to see what they have laying around. I believe these twist style shifters will also work on the style hub you have: https://www.ebay.com/itm/shimano-sty...0AAOSwwZtc~buh

EDIT: Regarding the above, Sturmey Archer hubs used different cables and I believe a different amount of cable pull.
PatTheSlat is offline  
Likes For PatTheSlat:
Old 06-11-19, 05:43 PM
  #12  
gna
Count Orlok Member
 
gna's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: St. Paul, MN
Posts: 1,655

Bikes: Raleigh Sports, Raleigh Twenty, Raleigh Wyoming, Schwinn Le Tour Luxe Frankenbike

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 41 Post(s)
Liked 47 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by PatTheSlat View Post

I had absolutely no idea these had become this scarce, and I'm surprised no one is doing 3d-printed replacements.

EDIT: Regarding the above, Sturmey Archer hubs used different cables and I believe a different amount of cable pull.
Wow, me either. I probably have one in the garage; I'll go look. I suppose I could drop by the recycler, too.

Yes, Sturmey-Archer shifters and and hubs had different cables and different amounts of pull.

EDIT: I found this in the garage:


It seems to work, though it is very stiff. OP, send me a PM.

Last edited by gna; 06-11-19 at 06:16 PM. Reason: Pictures of Parts
gna is offline  
Likes For gna:
Old 06-11-19, 10:18 PM
  #13  
riverdrifter
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
riverdrifter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 465

Bikes: Trek 620, Jamis Satellite Sport, Raleigh Sport

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 151 Post(s)
Liked 139 Times in 66 Posts
Originally Posted by gna View Post
Wow, me either. I probably have one in the garage; I'll go look. I suppose I could drop by the recycler, too.

Yes, Sturmey-Archer shifters and and hubs had different cables and different amounts of pull.

EDIT: I found this in the garage:


It seems to work, though it is very stiff. OP, send me a PM.
PM sent, thanks!
riverdrifter is offline  
Old 06-12-19, 07:16 AM
  #14  
T-Mar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 22,881
Mentioned: 607 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4536 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 2,673 Times in 1,688 Posts
While the plastic housing is broken, tension in the cable should keep the housing barrel seated against the internal metal bracket and allow it to function. If the barrel is "popping out", this suggests to me that there is an additional issue, likely with resistance between the cable and housing. As noted, they are indexed, with the indexing function provded by a ball bearing that nestles into one of three holes in the mounting bracket. The lever itself is very simple to overhaul (see attached). Replacement cables are getting hard to obtain but I've improvised by using a standard cable and crimping a derailleur cable cap securely onto the free end.
T-Mar is offline  
Likes For T-Mar:
Old 06-12-19, 07:26 AM
  #15  
riverdrifter
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
riverdrifter's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 465

Bikes: Trek 620, Jamis Satellite Sport, Raleigh Sport

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 151 Post(s)
Liked 139 Times in 66 Posts
It still shifts okay, and the cable doesn't come completely dis-engaged. What happens though, is the cable sleeve slips down and out and that creates less resistance for the cable. Then it becomes impossible to access all 3 gears, you can only get to 2 of them, then you realize the cable slipped down again and you have to pull it back in place. I figure that will probably lead to a broken cable eventually.
riverdrifter is offline  
Old 12-21-20, 11:52 AM
  #16  
Schwinneffect
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 53

Bikes: Invicta 3 speed

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Liked 11 Times in 6 Posts
Bad dog

I have a 1981 Miyata Commuter with the same shifter described by the OP. My shifter was damaged in a dog crash, but I've repaired it with superglue. I'd like to find a replacement. I did find an Nos shifter on ebay a while back, but the asking price was $269. I did not pay much more for the while bike. Does anyone know if a Nexus 3 speed trigger will work? Btw. The dog is fine, and he does not chase me anymore.
Schwinneffect is offline  
Old 12-22-20, 04:39 AM
  #17  
bwilli88 
Not lost wanderer.
 
bwilli88's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Kampong Cham, Cambodia but I have quite a few in Lancaster, PA
Posts: 2,951

Bikes: Bikes in USA; 73 Raleigh SuperCourse dingle speed, 72 Raleigh GranSport SS, 72 Geoffry Butler, 81 Centurion Pro-Tour, 82 Raleigh RRA.

Mentioned: 67 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 754 Post(s)
Liked 596 Times in 336 Posts
I should buy a bunch of these cables and maybe some shifters and bring them to the States in Apr or May when I come. They are cheap here, like $5 for a complete cable set and maybe $8 for a shifter.
bwilli88 is offline  
Old 12-22-20, 06:33 PM
  #18  
Velo Mule
Senior Member
 
Velo Mule's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Long Island, NY
Posts: 1,557

Bikes: Trek 800 x 2, Schwinn Heavy Duti, Schwinn Traveler, Schwinn Le Tour Luxe, Schwinn Continental, Cannondale M400 and Lampert

Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 560 Post(s)
Liked 508 Times in 377 Posts
Please let me know if you bring a bunch on your next trip. No rush, especially now. I have a Japanese frame that I am thinking might be a good candidate for a Shimano 3 speed.
Velo Mule is offline  
Old 12-22-20, 08:17 PM
  #19  
bark_eater 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Location: Eastern Shore, MD
Posts: 1,603

Bikes: Road ready: 1993 Koga Miyata City Liner Touring Hybrid, 1989 Centurion Sport DLX, "I Blame GP" Bridgestone CB-1. Projects: Yea, I got a problem....

Mentioned: 17 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 550 Post(s)
Liked 297 Times in 210 Posts
Sounds like job for Sugru,
bark_eater is offline  
Old 12-23-20, 08:00 AM
  #20  
Schwinneffect
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Location: Kentucky
Posts: 53

Bikes: Invicta 3 speed

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 19 Post(s)
Liked 11 Times in 6 Posts
Bikeforum posting must bring good luck. I'd looked for an OEM shift trigger for months. A day or two after posting about the matter I acquired one on ebay for 57 USD. If bwilli can bring some select vintage bike parts to the USA, he can make decent money during our little bike boom. I had begun to suspect that the cheapest way to get one of these shift triggers was to get a complete beater 3 speed bike, and remove the part. I hate parting out cool vintage bikes. Of course my ebay part probably came from someone who did just that.
Schwinneffect is offline  
Old 12-23-20, 12:55 PM
  #21  
markk900
Senior Member
 
markk900's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ontario
Posts: 2,366
Mentioned: 15 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 366 Post(s)
Liked 306 Times in 183 Posts
Glad you found one. Out of curiousity I did some searching myself, as I am in the midst of restoring an old Honda C70 Cub and many parts are only available (at reasonable costs) from Asia directly......no I didn't find a cache of Shimano shifters cheap, but this one sure looked interesting......(and not even from overseas)

NIB/NOS Shimano 3-Speed EM 333 Internal Gearing Thumb Shifter: Red/White Japanese text - 1960's 1970's - Cable/Housing - Bike Recyclery
markk900 is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
BoozyMcliverRot
Bicycle Mechanics
3
05-05-14 02:04 PM
Daniel Sundance
Classic & Vintage
22
01-04-13 06:43 PM
lindsayalex
Bicycle Mechanics
8
12-26-10 10:14 PM
figsman
Classic & Vintage
1
08-19-10 05:49 AM
chico1st
Classic & Vintage
23
01-03-10 10:39 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.