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After crash, shift indicators on MTB not working...

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After crash, shift indicators on MTB not working...

Old 07-11-20, 08:28 PM
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pbass
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After crash, shift indicators on MTB not working...

My son has an entry-level Jamis hardtail--pretty nice actually for the $. It has a triple. We were riding today and he took a spill onto the drivetrain side into soft sand(we were trying to muscle across a sandy stream bed). The derailleur hanger does not appear bent, and it is shifting normally. But this bike has those little numbered indicators on the shifters on the bars, and those got tweaked. The indicator for the rear on the right handlebar just stays stuck at the lowest gear (though you can see it try to move when you shift), and the indicator for the front rings jumps from one side to the other--it skips the middle ring. But again, it is shifting properly, other than the fact these little numbered indicators are off. Is this an easy fix, or something for the LBS? I've been working on my mechanic skills but still a noob--I can't figure out how that component (the little indicator thingies) work!
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Old 07-11-20, 08:53 PM
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What brand and model of shifter?
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Old 07-11-20, 09:12 PM
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Last bike I had that had a gear indicator was a 3 speed english racer in the late 60's. I know it's slightly more common on mountain bikes, but are they really needed?

As for DIYing them, if they are Shimano, you can usually find the exploded diagram on their tech doc site. Some of the other brands have this info too if you look hard for it.

Some shifters are inexpensive though so it might be worth getting new.
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Old 07-11-20, 10:16 PM
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Does it still shift without the pretty pictures ? you know we got along fine, for decades, without them, right?
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Old 07-11-20, 11:11 PM
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As suggested, you can get an exploded view and start taking it apart. You may get away with removing the cover and blowing the sand out of it. If it doesnít work, just replace them and use these as a backup set.

For most riding the indicators are of little value as you will shift up or down as needed. They are a psychological aid/hindrance sometimes when climbing. It is good to know there is another gear so you can grind knowing itís there and set up the shift, if you need to, by backing off the pressure. You donít want to shift under pressure and you donít want to back off and find no gear.

As he gets stronger, he may not even use them. Iíve ridden with and without. I do prefer having them even if I donít use them much.

John
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Old 07-12-20, 12:21 AM
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Thanks for the replies, all. I'm down with doing w/o these things on his bike, I'd actually like to take them off!
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Old 07-12-20, 05:19 AM
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On some Shimano shifters, you can remove the gear indicator and replace it with a cover like this https://www.jensonusa.com/Shimano-XT...indow-Cap-Bolt
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Old 07-12-20, 06:08 AM
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I volunteer at a non-profit shop and one of the most common causes of donation is a broken shifter. So I get to take a lot of them apart to try to fix them. A few have the indicator. It's never a priority to get the indicator working again, but I do give it a few seconds of effort. Sometimes I throw away the moving part so it's not a distraction. As mentioned above, it's probably a case of removing a couple of very small screws, popping off a plastic cover, and brushing or blowing sand out of the works. It's also been mentioned that it's not too hard to replace the shifter(s). And there's a chance of breaking it by taking it apart.
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Old 07-12-20, 06:43 AM
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Does sound as if some sand might have gotten in there. Maybe a can of computer air? Anyway, no loss if the shifters still work. Paint or tape over the windows if it's a distraction.
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Old 07-12-20, 10:47 AM
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Thanks folks, I'll have a go at trying to take it apart. But I think I can convince him it's no biggee if we can't get 'em working again.
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Old 07-12-20, 11:26 AM
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features like that were added to increase the market size to include people
who don't drive a car without an automatic transmission.
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Old 07-12-20, 11:36 AM
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Yeah, back in the good old days bicycles didn't even have pedals. We are just getting too soft! <grin>
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Old 07-12-20, 01:03 PM
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Naturally, it's part of the whole molded assembly, plus one of the screws holding it together is some weird 5-point thingy which I don't have a bit for. I got it cracked partially open and blew some compressed air in there but no go. What's weird is how it's both sides, both shifters on the right and left of the bars, yet he only laid it down on the right side. Oh well, as I say, seems to be sifting normally...
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