1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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  1. #1
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    Can someone help me (shifter related)

    I and my girlfriend just picked up some new bikes in January.

    Just some cheap walmart bikes Next - shocker, and Next - Power climber.

    anywho, a month later, we went camping, and took the bikes with us for a casual ride.. she was complaining that her right shifter was stuck, we got it home, and never touched it until today..

    I was wondering what was going on, i dis-assembled the crappy plastic handlebar twist shifter, and out poured around 40 tiny cracked, shattered broken plastic. Clearly the shifter is complete garbage.

    I didn't know if its possible to replace just the shifter with an aftermarket version (she has a 3/7 21 speed) I would really like to be able to just replace the shifter, and not have to purchase another bike.

    Thanks for any help

    -M.T

  2. #2
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    What brand was the shifter?
    (And what brand was the derailleur it shifted - sounds like the rear)


    Hopefully it should be possible to replace (though with 7speed it wont be quite so easy) - partly depends on what mech there is.

    IF the rear mech is a shimano unit, you should be able to rig it up with some Shimano STX 7speed shifters (if you can find them) as I recently had to on my brothers scrapper bike.
    If you can find them, they should be relatively cheap - cheaper than a new bike atleast.
    Instructions for how to get cable tensions set should be available somewhere - or you could get a bike shop to do it for you - if you choose to do it yourself DO NOT use pliers to cut gear cables, as they will fray, you need specific cable-cutters.

    If you chose that route, youd want to replace both front AND rear shifters, since they're a different kind to the twistshifers you currently have (that said, it sounds like they're very break-prone).

    Let us know what the mech is and we can tell you whether this would work.

    Links:
    Rear Derailleur shifter (right hand)
    Front Derailleur shifter (left hand)


    Hope this helps, let us know what mech it is to be sure though.
    T

  3. #3
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    you can just replace the shifter. not too complicated. Find a shifter on any of the online sites that is compatible with the derailleur and install. or.. take to lbs, tell them you want a new shifter installed and have them locate one for you if you do not want to take the time or trouble. that may be the safe route if you have never adjusted a derailleur.

  4. #4
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    yeah you can just replace the shifter. your current shifters are probably just some type of lower end Shimano brand shifters. a replacement should only cost you about $20 or so. try your local bike shop they should be able to get you squared away.

  5. #5
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    ok, sorry for the mis-information. I thought she had a 21 speed, that was my bike, hers is a 18 speed. 3/6.. i mis-counted. The gear shifter has Zero markings on it, the derailleur (the rear shifting part, sorry im new to bikes, 7 year ASE auto mechanic though!) has "sun-_._._._._" something or other after that, the remaining sticker is faded.

    Anywho, I called a local bike shop, they quoted me 45$ for a pair of new shifters installed.. I went to a few online bike places, and found a Crapload for under 25$.

    A new replica bike of what she has is under 100$

    Im kinda stuck in a point if i can just replace the shifter, or the bike.. I'm afraid i can throw a cheap part on there to replace the even cheaper part that broke, and then have something else break (i notice rust on the rear derailleur spring)

    BLAH, let me look around some more, ill probably just swap out both shifters myself.

  6. #6
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    Do any of you guys have a preference of online stores to shop at for bike parts?

  7. #7
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    I do, but being british, they wont be much use to you (we have to pay more for parts than you do).


    To be honest, if you're seeing problems already, the chances are there are more you havent seen yet.


    Spending money fixing that bike might end up costing more than the bike is worth - looking around for a used bike in a good condition might be a better idea.

    Try Craigslist or Ebay - and see what you can find near you, you'd almost certainly end up with a better bike, and less likely to incur more repair costs

  8. #8
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    www.nashbar.com
    www.performancebikes.com
    www.cambriabikes.com
    www.jensonusa.com

    i have bought parts from all of these places over the years and none has disappointed me yet.

  9. #9
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    cool, i found a Local place about 2 miles from my house, whenever my gal gets off work, im gong to go check them out. Wish me luck!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by McTrench
    Anywho, I called a local bike shop, they quoted me 45$ for a pair of new shifters installed.. I went to a few online bike places, and found a Crapload for under 25$.
    It's like with getting your car repaired. There's the cost of the parts, and then there's the labor. If you're mechanically inclined, try a visit to parktool.com. Here's a link that'll get you to a bunch of their instructions related to derailler and shifter adjustments:

    http://www.parktool.com/repair/byreg...ageField2.y=12

    Quote Originally Posted by McTrench
    A new replica bike of what she has is under 100$

    Im kinda stuck in a point if i can just replace the shifter, or the bike.. I'm afraid i can throw a cheap part on there to replace the even cheaper part that broke, and then have something else break (i notice rust on the rear derailleur spring)
    Yeah, it's a dilemma for sure. Do you spend 25% of the cost of the bike to replace just one part? You could, I suppose, buy a second bike and hang onto the broken one as a source of spare parts. That wouldn't be my first choice though.

    You know, sometimes Salvation Army stores and the like have inexpensive used bikes for sale. You might be able to buy one for $25 or so, and then just scavenge the shifter from it. Or maybe find a cheap used bike in the want-ads, and scavenge the shifter from that.

  11. #11
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    Well small update, I ordered the parts.. just some shimano 6x3 pair of shifters..

    after i looked at the shifting mechanism, i found it is operated by tension.. actually kinda fun shifting the bike by pulling a cable.. But after seeing me and my gal's shifters were almost identical (twist shift, by same "rising sun") i decided it wouldn't hurt to just replace mine as well.. I don't want my shifter breaking in 21'st gear on the trail. talk about destroying my legs.

    Anywho, my parts are coming in.. i already have the grips removed, and the junky shifters removed with cables dangling.. just waiting on parts!!

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