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  1. #1
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    nine speed shimano ultegra upshifter stuck to downshifter won't move independently

    So i'm on my ride and notice my right hand 2003 nine speed ultegra shifter/brake lever when downshifting isn't returning to its home position....

    Then i push it over to the home position and then notice that the upshifter won't click or move without moving the whole downshift/brake lever to the left with it.

    I can not down shift at all. Now i'm stuck on the largest rear cog. It appears perfectly capable of downshifting. It appears that the upshifter is sticking out a milimetter or two outside the brake lever more then my left side shifter/brake lever.

    The bike wasn't dropped recently that i know of. It was working fine yesterday then this morning i got the issue.

    I fooled around with it trying to press the upshifter with some force to see if it was stuck to the downshifter but no luck. Its boggling my mind what is making it stuck.

    I've read that i should spray it with wd40 or brake cleaner but it doesn't appear to be a lubrication issue to me....


    Is this common? Is this a sign of failed tiny gears in the shifter, and replacement is necessary or can i take it apart and clear the jamb or whatever is the problem?

    Any advice here of what to do?

  2. #2
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    If the internals are gunked up, WD40 might free things up. If things are broke, you might try eBay for a replacement.
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  3. #3
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    How many miles on your rear shifter cable? Pull the hood back and see if the cable is frayed. When the cable fails, they fail inside the shifter from being twisted around repeatedly. Tiny cable pieces can cause nasty things to happen inside the shifter.
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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lombard View Post
    Pull the hood back and see if the cable is frayed.
    Probably a waste of time. I don't believe there's much to see with 9 speed shifters and his cable is wound all the so any frayed area is unlikely to be showing anyway.

    Op, Being stuck in the big cog is a problem because you can't get the cable out with it there. You need to be in the 11 or whatever your smallest, in size, rear cog is.
    Maybe latch on to some exposed cable (like on the down tube) with pliers or vice gribs and see if clicking with additional pull will unwind it.
    Obviously the point here is to get the cable out so see if it's frayed.

    Your cable isn't releasing so either the shifter is dead or something is hanging it up. Theoretically your rear der. spring could be dead but I don't think that ever actually happens.
    I've had similar symptoms and once it was a dead shifter and the other few times it was frayed cable Although with the frayed cable I could shift a few cogs. With the dead shifter it was stuck in the largest cog. Extreme gunk on the cable guide or elsewhere could also prevent the cable from releasing but I'd never seen it so bad as to freeze things in one cog.

    Either way, you need to get the cable out first and then take it from there by cleaning things up and you may as well start with a new cable even if the old one looks okay.

  5. #5
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    My cable is frayed right where it goes into the shifter and since I am stuck all the way in the biggest COG does that mean it's going to be next to impossible to get the cable out?

  6. #6
    'brifter' is a lame word.
    Reputation: cxwrench's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drewbabich View Post
    My cable is frayed right where it goes into the shifter and since I am stuck all the way in the biggest COG does that mean it's going to be next to impossible to get the cable out?
    Old 9 speed shifters? It's definitely going to be difficult.
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  7. #7
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    I have never replaced the cables

    The bike is roughly a 2003 and I bought a slightly used a few years ago it was almost like brand new but I have never changed the cable in about three or four years of ownership

  8. #8
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by drewbabich View Post
    The bike is roughly a 2003 and I bought a slightly used a few years ago it was almost like brand new but I have never changed the cable in about three or four years of ownership
    And now you know that you need to change them sooner. Do the housing too.
    I work for some bike racers
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