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  1. #1
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    Twist Shifters to Tigger Shifters?

    The other day when cleaning up my son's bike and noticed that the grips on the twist shifters are on their last leg. Thinking new ones might make a good Christmas present I did a little "Googling" to find options. Since I really love my trigger shifters, I wonder if changing to a trigger/rapid-fire is a good option. I would like to hear pros and cons of switching them out.

    My son has been riding off road for a few years now so he does shift occasionally, not just ride in the highest gear.

    I would be replacing the Shimano Revoshifts that control the 7 speed Altus derailleur.
    Thanks all!
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  2. #2
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    My 11-year old has pretty small hands.. Ive noticed that sometimes its a stretch for her to activate the rapidfires and still keep her hands safely on the grips.. They're for the front derailleur (grip shift for rear) and the levers do have a longer throw for the FD.. Otherwise, they're fine, and she actually says she likes the rapidfires better! (Smart girl!)

  3. #3
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    My son just switched to rapidfire from Grip shifts and he loves them and finds it much easier to shift. I highly reccomend the change.

  4. #4
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    My son's been riding triggers since he was 5.
    I like turtles

  5. #5
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    Our son's been fighting with GripShifts since he started riding his MTB's a few years ago, and at 11 years old is just getting to the point where he can grip and rotate them without working at it much more than we do. I's switch him to XTR triggers, but they're molded onto brake levers that are pre-vee... so he gets what he gets, ha ha! Anyway, I think triggers are often better for kids with small hands.

  6. #6
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    On the last trip I was really watching his technique and I was confused that in technical sections he kept going from top to bottom to top gear, almost no gear in between. I suspect that he cannot concentrate on riding and turning the handle only one click. I wonder if Triggers will allow him to be a little more precise about changing gears.
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  7. #7
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    My son's Kona Hula 24 came w/Grip Shift on it (got it when he was almost 8 y.o.) Last winter, I set his bike up on a stationary trainer so he could spin and shift both twisters back and forth to see what happens without having to worry about braking, watching where he was going, etc.

    This year we started riding bikes to school a lot this year. We have to climb over a decent hill to get to the school. I usually follow my son over this hill and I can watch his shifting and he's got it down pat. He shifts down a few entering the hill and as we continue to climb, he continues to shift down to keep his RPM's up.

    Triggers or twisters, I think giving them the opportunity to learn their shifting by utilizing a trainer makes a TON of difference!

  8. #8
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    My 5 year old is finding tough to shift with GripShift. He had no problem operating the SRAM X5 on his brother even though the bike is too big for him.

  9. #9
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    So, would any 7 speed shifter work?
    Looking for something under $40 each. Any suggestions?
    Thanks!
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  10. #10
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    As long as they are not Sram's 1:1 ratio shifters (so nothing from the X._ series) any shifter should work.

  11. #11
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    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  12. #12
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    Shimano revo is the worst gripshifter that I've ever had. It's hard to twist but since I use sram mrx the shifting is become much smoother.

    If you want the EZ shifter for 7 speed try Shimano Tourney ST-EF40

  13. #13
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    I thought I would post an update...
    Santa brought these shifters, actually the set of shifters with grips at the bottom of the link. $37 and 5 days delivery time.

    Installation was a breeze! The only thing not mentioned in the instructions is, you will need to remove the brake levers as the shifters go inside, rather than outside the brakes like the twist shifters. But no biggie.

    My son (9 year old) learned to use them pretty much instantly. So if you are considering the swap, do it!


    Last edited by coopdad; 12-29-2011 at 10:20 AM.
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  14. #14
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    I got one of those 7spd 310 shifters for my kids 20" Trek, he can actually shift. Outrode my 10 yo nephew who was having major issues with the Revo shifters on his 24". Kids use the shifter as grips, and those things were shifting all over and making it a sucky experience. That and my 5yo thinks it is cool to have the "same" shifter as dad (how long will that last?)

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  15. #15
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    I'm just echoing the masses here, but I swapped out the revo shifters on my 6yo son's 20" hotrock for some trigger shifters before i gave it to him for christmas, and I feel like that was a very good decision. Those revos are quite stiff, and I know he would be struggling with them. It took him all of half an hour to get used to shifting with the triggers and which paddle does what (he still occasionally forgets, but remembers quite quickly).

  16. #16
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    Yes. you made a right choice. If it's a Shimano Revoshifter SL-RS 35 its totally stiff for mountain biking. I switch it to SRAM MRX.

  17. #17
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    Good job!

    My boy HATES the gripshift, fights that shifter tooth and nail sometimes, can't pick a precise gear despite his honest efforts. He frequently shifts from 1 to 7 and nothing in between. And this is the kid who can finesse anything into doing what he wants.

    This is just what I needed to know. Ordered one on Prime. It'll be here on Wednesday. Thanks for this thread, it was enlightening.
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  18. #18
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    As I read back on this thread there are three issues being addressed:
    1. twist shifters not being good because they are imprecise (difficult to only shift one at a time)
    2. twist shifters are often hard to turn for young people
    3. questions if changing to trigger is possible and which brands work.

    But I am not sure we addressed #2, only implied the answer.

    My son has no problem physically actuating the shifter. We let some of his younger (8 year old I believe) friends try them recently and they too had no trouble pushing the "triggers".

    I will swapping out the twist shifter on my daughter's new bike soon also.

    Hope this helps.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by coopdad View Post
    As I read back on this thread there are three issues being addressed:
    1. twist shifters not being good because they are imprecise (difficult to only shift one at a time)
    2. twist shifters are often hard to turn for young people
    3. questions if changing to trigger is possible and which brands work.

    But I am not sure we addressed #2, only implied the answer.

    My son has no problem physically actuating the shifter. We let some of his younger (8 year old I believe) friends try them recently and they too had no trouble pushing the "triggers".

    I will swapping out the twist shifter on my daughter's new bike soon also.

    Hope this helps.

    Something else I noticed but haven't had time to address yet. I thought that my son didn't have the finger strength to shift the front derailleur.

    After taking a look at his bike, I'm left wondering if it's the shitty chainrings on it. No ramps, just 4 pins. Since his bike is getting handed down to my daughter, I'll be changing the rings and letting you guys know if that makes a difference on the FD issue.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by coopdad View Post
    As I read back on this thread there are three issues being addressed:
    1. twist shifters not being good because they are imprecise (difficult to only shift one at a time)
    2. twist shifters are often hard to turn for young people
    3. questions if changing to trigger is possible and which brands work.

    But I am not sure we addressed #2, only implied the answer.
    I don't think #2 applies to all shifters - just the combination of the cheap revo shifter and little hands. A quality twister or bigger/stronger hands make it a non issue.

    I just know for my 6yo sons bike, there was a significant difference in hand force required between the revo and the rapidfire shifters. I am sure he fouls have used the twisters, but I'm glad I switched them out.

    Regarding the front derailleur - no doubt that uses a stiffer spring and is harder to push, but I would make sure the cables are in good shape and lubed with no kinks before swapping chainrings.

  21. #21
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    I forgot to mention it before, the Amazon.com Shimano Acera shifters that we purchased did come with new cables.
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  22. #22
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    This is a great thread, will give me the info I need to determine if I ask the bike shop to swap shifters on a new bike so it's ready at delivery time or not. I might ask, and they'll look at me like I'm nuts.

    Yes, because this forum requires new users to post 5 times before starting a thread or doing other actions (there's a laundry list of dumb requirements and hoops to jump through) I'm looking for some threads to respond to and bump to prove I'm not a deadbeat spammer or whatever this forum is trying to protect against.

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