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  1. #1
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    reduce force for kid - Shimano Alivo derailleur/shifter

    I just bought a used Kona Shred 2-4 for my 8 year old son. I replaced the broken shifters with Shimano Alivo parts: thumb up, finger trigger down.

    The work fine for my adult thumb, but he doesn't have the same strength in his hands yet. I used new cables with the used derailleurs, Shimano Alivo in the front and Tourney in the rear. It is a 7-speed drivetrain.

    I am not too excited at the prospect of throwing more money at this bike for 9-speed stuff. Really, the front derailleur is the stiffest anyway.

    What can I do to reduce the force required? Is there any way to somehow adjust the spring preload opposing the shifter on the front derailleur? It was not obvious to me just from looking.

    My son loves being able to shift gear, but that front gear is problematic.

    Thanks for the help,

    Lifespeed

  2. #2
    Meh.
    Reputation: XSL_WiLL's Avatar
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    Make sure that the housing runs are nice and smooth with nice straight cuts at the ends. Maybe use a light lube inside the housing.

    I had an XT front derailleur before that one of the coils on the spring broke. I was able to remove the broke coil at the end and still stretch it to make it work. Perhaps that is a last ditch effort.

  3. #3
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    In my experience, shifters make big difference in how strong you have to push.
    Try to clean the existing ones, or even better, get new ones.

  4. #4
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    The shifters are new as are the cable housings. They make smooth bends. I wonder if I should get a nice SRAM shifter or something like that? I don't think the 7-speed setup matters for the front . . .

    I did not use any lube on the cables, I hear you're not supposed to as the housings are lined with some supposedly slippery material.

    I thought I covered all my bases except for a new front derailleur. I sprayed it with cleaner and blew it out with compressed air. Can it be disassembled for cleaning?

  5. #5
    bike rider
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    I thought modern 8 year olds have evolved super-thumbs from all the video games. If your's hasn't, get him off the bike and on a strict regimen of Xbox and Playstation. Also, replace conversation over dinner with texting. He'll be banging off shifts in just a few months (if you can pull him away from the TV).
    Last edited by Lelandjt; 03-29-2009 at 07:50 PM.
    Keep the Country country.

  6. #6
    LDH
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    use a grip shift for the front until he gets older.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by LDH
    use a grip shift for the front until he gets older.
    Agree.
    You can use the sram front twistie with the front Alivio, (but not the rear) Lots of people run twistie on one side and triggers on the other.

    Mikey

  8. #8
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    The twist shifter sounds like a good idea. Either that, or more video games

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