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  1. #1
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    Help with Front Derailleur not shifting from first to second chain wheel

    Just got a new cannondale trail 6 and it has a SHIMANO FD-M190 Altus front derailleur.

    The bike will not shift up to the second (middle) chain wheel from the first (smallest) chain wheel when I have the chain on the 1rst or 2nd rear cogs (largest ones). Everything else seems fine. It appears the H and L settings for the 3rd and 1rst chain wheels are set correctly.

    What is the issue I cant seem to correct it. I think the shifter cable tension is correct as well.

    Any help would be appreciated.
    Last edited by Strife21; 04-24-2013 at 12:59 PM.

  2. #2
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    I'm trying to think if I even shift up from such a low gearing I'll have to check next time I'm out.

    FD's can be quite finicky. I had an Atlus or Alivio FD before and replaced it with an XT which has worked better and can be had for cheap. You might try adjusting the height of the derailleur and also moving it to one side or the other slightly around the seattube. There's a decent writeup on park tools site about derailleur adjustments.

  3. #3
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    cable needs more tension. Turn your barrel adjuster counter-clockwise a few turns. Make sure that when the chain is in little chainring, big cog, the inner plate of the front derailleur is 1-2mm away from the chain. Do this with the low limit screw, and do this before you adjust cable tension.

  4. #4
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    New question here.

    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocop View Post
    cable needs more tension. Turn your barrel adjuster counter-clockwise a few turns. Make sure that when the chain is in little chainring, big cog, the inner plate of the front derailleur is 1-2mm away from the chain. Do this with the low limit screw, and do this before you adjust cable tension.
    Turning it counter clockwise helps but then If I am in the 6th cog and biggest chain wheel then try to shift down to middle chain wheel it takes a real long time shift.

    There is no in between it seems to be one or the other.

  5. #5
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    It also seems like sometimes it will work fine for a while then start doing it. I hope the actual trigger shifters aren't messed up.

  6. #6
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    I wonder if you're trying to shift under load? FDs, especially low-end ones like the Altus, often don't like to shift if you're pedalling hard. Does it shift correctly when the bike is up on a workstand and you turn the cranks by hand?

  7. #7
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    No it does not work on a stand. And it does not work when I pedal and shift not on load. I thought that might be it too

  8. #8
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    As someone said; front derailleurs can be finicky, sometimes it takes some time making small adjustments to get it all right.

    Carefully follow the Park adjustment guide from the beginning, don't assume the derailleur is set to the correct height or is aligned correctly, you should be able to work it out:

    Park Tool Co. ParkTool Blog Front Derailleur Adjustments

    Personally I try no to use the front derailleur, less to worry about that way.

  9. #9
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    So I took it to my LBS and they put it on the stand and I showed them the problem. Needless to say at first they thought it was the adjustments but after closer inspection they too believe something else is going on and are going to need to take some time with it. They thought it looked a little odd.

    Not sure if its the chain, cables, shifter, derailluer or crankset but something is up. They said they would try replacing stuff on the bike with other items they have lying around to see if that helps the problem one at a time.

    I am a bit upset being I just got the bike and my LBS is not a cannondale dealer, thus I will have to pay for all this out of pocket and it wont be covered under warranty. Wonder if I should call cannondale and see if they can help me out.

  10. #10
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    Update:

    Well the LBS worked with the bike shop I bought the bike at when I was at of town and they agreed to pay for the new parts which was awesome. Apparently the owners new each other.

    Anyhow they discovered my chain line was at way to much of a angle and it was causing issues. LBS felt it was just like that from the factory. But they wanted me happy so they put a deore front chainset and new BB which replaced my tourney/altus crankset and then replaced the front altus derailleur with a Deore one. Shifting is much better now. I just had to pay my LBS for the labor.

  11. #11
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    Awesome...Get out and enjoy your fully functioning new bike.

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