Sunday, August 19, 2012

Shimano STI shifter repair, Oakland CA

Here's the deal. Bike shops don't work on STI shifters - they are really intricate and difficult to take apart and reassemble. The labor cost just isn't worth it. They don't even have the one tool you really need (I asked around at a ton of places looking for one...)

If your shifter is under warranty, send it back to Shimano. If not, you have nothing to lose. So bring it to me. If I am able to repair it, pay me $30, and you're back in business for a lot less than a new shifter will cost you. If I can't, I get to keep the broken parts but you owe me nothing.

I'll be very honest: the most likely outcome is the latter. That's part of why the bike shops won't even try. If any internal component is broken, Shimano doesn't sell replacement parts. It may not even be clear what the problem is, since the mechanism is so intricate. The best you can hope for is a disengaged spring, perhaps. But at least I'll try.

I'm in downtown Oakland, CA. Email me at the link on the right with a description of the problem, to the best of your knowledge, and the model, number of gears, and whether it's the left or right shifter.

(In related news, sheer stubbornness will get you a long way... My broken set of $243 shifters on my new used road bike that had been banged up pretty good in an accident are now almost as good as new. After more hours of effort and visits to bike shops than I can count. Now I feel like I've invested enough that I should put the knowledge to generalized use :)

2 comments:

Sheng said...

You managed to repair Shimano shifters. That is very impressive! I have Campagnolo shifters that I took apart once to replace a few broken parts. I barely managed to put it back together, even with the help of a manual.

Vera L. te Velde said...

hehe thanks. hopefully the epoxy on the broken washer holds. but yeah, I've spent at least 4 hours trying to get the last spring on each one engaged with various concocted tools (didn't want to wait a week for the real one). The soundtrack was very similar to the dad in A Christmas Story when he's repairing their boiler...

(thank god for http://www.nitrodyno.com/Ultegra-STI/index.html... that guy is a hero. he only has instructions for the triple but the other one was simpler.)