Kids having a hard time figuring out shifting => remote shifter?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Kids having a hard time figuring out shifting => remote shifter?

    Has anyone tried setting up a remote shifter on the parents bike with a wireless group, AXS or something? My kids are still shifting at the wrong time or just not shifting.

  2. #2
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    I went with Shimano Rapid Rise on my sons Hot Rock build, it was the best mod I did. I found an XT short cage derailure and paired it with an Altus shifter.

    The Rapid Rise reverses the effort, when they come to a hill and need to shift, the spring does the work, instead of their tiny thumb.



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  3. #3
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    Kids having a hard time figuring out shifting => remote shifter?

    Just yell out what number they need to be in. And switching to trigger shift and new cables made a big difference.

    Or we will just stop and switch them get going again. This is really only a few month problem. Kids get on gears at 4 or 5 and figure it out in a few months.


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  4. #4
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    I hear your concern but the reality is.... practice. a lot of things are not simple at first but in a short time become intuitive.

    I've recently started doing actual mountain biking with my eleven-year-old. He has a very nice trailcraft bike but it is set up 2x10. He is quite small for his age and manipulating the front derailleur with the shifter has been a problem. Not to mention which gear combinations work for the given situation. However after just 8 or 12 rides his improvement has been exponential.

    I've already priced out the needed equipment to turn his bike into a 1x 11 but now I've decided not to bother. Kids are very adaptable. whether it's shifters that are hard to manipulate or learning the timing of shifting it will all come with practice and time on the trail.

    My advice, let them learn on the go. Don't be too quick to try to fix it for them.

  5. #5
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    My sons old bike was a 24" Trek MT220 with a lousy (in hind sight) Altus front and Alivio rear 3x7. With Altus trigger shifters he could physically shift, but I found that he would not shift the front and rarely shift the rear. The Altus / Alivio stuff I had installed myself with new cables and shifters, and they worked much much better than the junk that Trek had put on the bike. He would force himself to pedal up hills in the highest gear because he did not want to shift.

    On Sunday we too delivery of a Commencal 27.5 with SRAM SX rear and SX shifter. He actually shifts that much more frequently, and my only reasoning is because it's easier. He still does not get into the lower gearing on the cassette, but will shift between the middle and highest gears on the cassette much more frequently. It's an 11-50 cassette, I don't see him needing the 50 for the trails we ride, he just has it.

    Also he has been riding trails for a year but he still shifts at the wrong time, I don't know if that will go away anytime soon, because he prefers to "challenge" himself and then waits until he is half way up a big hill before giving up and downshifting at completely the wrong time. Maybe something similar is going on?

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marshfly View Post
    Just yell out what number they need to be in. And switching to trigger shift and new cables made a big difference.

    Or we will just stop and switch them get going again. This is really only a few month problem. Kids get on gears at 4 or 5 and figure it out in a few months.
    With my 4 (almost 5) year old I don't even have the number display on his shifter -- it's an older 9 speed XT shifter with different colors for each paddle, so I just tell him "Grey" or "Black".

    I did take a look at something like the Archer D1X, but concluded it was more than I wanted to spend at the time.

  7. #7
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    What shifters are they running? I've seen this frequently with the garbage grip shifters that so many kids bikes come with. I'm another vote for rapid rise and some decent older triggers.
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  8. #8
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    I bought an SL-M310-7R for my kid but his bike has a 7 speed free hub. I got brand new cables and housings and put a new short cage Tourney derailleur on. He had to get some strength in his thumb for the downshifts but that only took a few rides. Now he shifts like a champ. He turned 5 in November.


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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by TimTucker View Post
    so I just tell him "Grey" or "Black".
    This is my approach with my 5.9yo precisely. The newer XT trigger shifter works great under his fingers, so it's just managing gear. Our own language is "silver" or "black."

    Mid ride it's so simple, our litanies are things like "hill coming, two Silver!" or "your legs are too fast, black shift!"

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by the.vault View Post
    Has anyone tried setting up a remote shifter on the parents bike with a wireless group, AXS or something? My kids are still shifting at the wrong time or just not shifting.
    Not sure your exact situation, but when my boy was 5, he wasn't strong enough to use a mechanical shifter, so I installed Di2 on his bike. Still took him time to learn when to shift, but at least the main hurdle was gone. The other benefit of electronic shifting is the RD won't jam if accidentally pulling off too many shifts at once. If you are considering AXS for his bike, I would go ahead and install the shifter too. Learning when to shift only comes with practice, as others have said.

  11. #11
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    My 8 year old girl says her thumb can't reach the lower upshift lever. I've adjusted things a lot but it's designed for an adult hand and just doesn't fit.

    Really she doesn't seem to care much. I just stick the bike in 3rd gear for her most of the time.

    That said, if anyone has a good suggestion I'd like to hear it. Was considering one of those twist shift grip things. Are they pretty universal?

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by davee5 View Post
    This is my approach with my 5.9yo precisely. The newer XT trigger shifter works great under his fingers, so it's just managing gear. Our own language is "silver" or "black."

    Mid ride it's so simple, our litanies are things like "hill coming, two Silver!" or "your legs are too fast, black shift!"
    We used a label maker to print a large 'H' for Hard, as in the trail is about to get hard to pedal up and stuck that sticker on the downshift lever. This language works about half the time. I yell 'HARD!' and she'll downshift 1-2 gears, usually.

    I love that a kid's bike has Di2 on it! Awesome.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suns_PSD View Post
    My 8 year old girl says her thumb can't reach the lower upshift lever. I've adjusted things a lot but it's designed for an adult hand and just doesn't fit.

    Really she doesn't seem to care much. I just stick the bike in 3rd gear for her most of the time.

    That said, if anyone has a good suggestion I'd like to hear it. Was considering one of those twist shift grip things. Are they pretty universal?
    Shimano shifters with 2 way shifting:
    https://bike.shimano.com/en-EU/techn...y-release.html

    You can use thumb or press it towards you from your hand wrapped around the bars.

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