/ Alternative MB Gear Shifters
I thought it was from tight gripping over rough ground, but on playing with my gear shifters yesterday, I'm fairly confident its been caused by using thumb shifters, as the pain quickly transmits up to my elbow.
Anyone had any similar experience with this, and what alternative shifters would people recommend to avoid excess pressure on my thumb.
I'm currently on SRAM X3s
I'd tend to agree with TobyA, have you tried moving the shifters both the angle of them relative to the brakes and the position along the bars relative to the grips. You should be able to get them to a positing where your hands sit naturally.
Rather than upgrade your X3 shifters, consider moving to shimano, as the down click levers on those aren't thumb operated (you use your fingers on the other side of the bar)
> Rather than upgrade your X3 shifters, consider moving to shimano, as the down click levers on those aren't thumb operated (you use your fingers on the other side of the bar)
But that would involve changing your mechs as the ratios are different.
Change them to gripshifters?
It is a very stiff changer, especially going 9 to 1 so its hard work on my thumb. I'll play around with its position and cables and see if it helps before I resort to new shifters and a trip to the LBS.
Do they seem any different to friends' shifters?
re: the idea of switching to Shimano. Shimano and Sram dérailleurs have different pull ratios. So Shimano shifters and Sram mechs aren't compatible and vice versa too.
Get some LBS advice (As you propose) but I think you should be able to move to grip shifters without much problem, certainly if they're SRAM too. The only thing that matters is how much cable the shifter pays out or reels in for each click. This then more or less depends on the mech and how many gears you're using.
It may even work across marques. I had SRAM grip shifters with Shimano everything else on an old Trek, no problems. Don't know if either company tried to break compatibility later on.
just checked wikipedia
Given that friction shifters were compatible with almost any derailleur, index shifting systems have been criticized for their non-interchangeability. For example, Shimano indexing components are often incompatible with SRAM or Campagnolo components, because the amount of cable pulled between each "click" is different in each system. For example, a typical Shimano (2:1), 7-speed shifter changes the cable length by 2.9mm between each gear, while a similar 7-speed SRAM (1:1) shifter changes the cable length by 4.5mm; some other SRAM units, (that differ only by an MRX designator), are compatible with Shimano units. In addition, newer components are often not backward compatible with older systems from the same manufacturer, so finding spares for older systems is often difficult, and stocking all of the possible combinations (shifters, derailleurs, chainrings, freewheels, and cassettes) is a challenge for the local bike shop.
I wouldn't be so quick to rule out overgripping as the root cause, even if it seems to be the thumbshifting that's painful. It's worth experimenting with different gloves, or no gloves, and actively forcing yourself to relax your grip slightly and keep your elbows moving around rather than death-gripping through rough sections. It's good practice anyhow, and will make you a better rider, so you might as well.
Try a few hilly road rides where you can eliminate overgripping as an issue.
However, as others have said, you could make slight adjustments to your shifter position to try to get a more comfortable hand placement. Tiny changes can make a big difference to comfort.
Something else that could be worth looking at is the angle of the bars themselves. Most bars have some degree of sweepback/angling and it's amazing how much difference this can make to comfort, try rotating the bars in the stem a bit and see the difference!
So I guess I'm back on the market for another bike to try and aleviate my problem. Don't suppose anyone knows one avail in the N Walesish area?
I agree that swapping a complete mech would be an expensive fix (especially as it might not solve the issue).
How many gears is it - 7, 8, 9? A gripshifter for 7-speed is less than £12 (9-speed a bit more), and it should be pretty much a straight swap for your existing shifter, ie a job you could do yourself after watching a couple of youtube vids.
Worth trying before you make a loss selling on a perfectly good bike.
Have you tried some of the other suggestions above?
If you don't mind using 'friction' thumbshifters, you can buy some of those for a few pounds from ebay, have seen some sets for £5 or close enough, and some cheapish front and rear mechs for approx £20 each.
You can use the ball of your thumb to shift, or your fingers, they are called thumbshifters but you don't have to use just your thumbs.
You can get a long cage Shimano Acera rear mech for 16.25 including postage, and a pair of compatible friction thumb shifters for 10.00 including postage. I'm sure you could find a front mech for around 10.00 or there abouts.
Friction means there's no clicks from the shifters, and you need to go be sound and how it feels to pedal to tell if you're in gear or not. It can take a little getting used to, but it soon becomes second nature and one good point is you never need to index your gears.
You can still shift standing up, though some MTBers don't think you can. It's just psychological, i've found..
Could look out for some shimano shifters if you want which index, then you could fit them and refit the cables, and have a bike shop index them if you're not sure how?
You can certainly get the parts for not more than £50 if you look around on the internet.
Having a sniff around twist shifters - looks like I can get Sram I motion 9 speed for £12 from Chain Reaction.
May give that a go - anyone know if they're any good and how difficult is it to swap?
I believe they usually come with an inner cable already attached, so it would be a matter of removing your old shifter and cable, feeding the new one down through your outers to the mech, cutting and clamping then checking the indexing.
Faffy but not hard. You'll need decent wire cutters, allen keys, tiny bit of grease for the inner perhaps.
> I believe they usually come with an inner cable already attached, so it would be a matter of removing your old shifter and cable, feeding the new one down through your outers to the mech, cutting and clamping then checking the indexing.
If the OP is changing his shifters because excess friction is causing him major difficulties then advising him to reuse his old cable outers is mind bogglingly stupid. As a.) outer cable is cheap and b.) there's a strong possibility the existing cables and cable housings could be contributing the resistance he has had to deal with so far. So for the sake of less than a fiver's worth of cable housing to not even try and rectify the other major possible cause of the resistance does not make sense.
plus 1 ^^^^^^
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