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Identifying front gear shifter problems
Basically - the front gear shift no longer moves the derailer - it doesn't click as if it's moving anything but I can't see that the cable if broken... being new to this game - fed up with bike shop costs, I figure it could be broken within the shifter housing... does that seem likely...?
Excuse my ignorance - keen to learn!! enjoying the website....

What kind / make of shifter is it?
Undo the cable at the dreailleur and see if the system works now. You can pull (tension) the cable by hand to simulate the movement.
Can you move the shifter at all?
Can you move the derailleur with your hand?

Ride hard or ride home alone!
it's a shimano shifter... the lever moves - but feels inert - like it's running loose...
basically - it feels like I could move it up the cogs - into the hardest, but there's no clicking release mechanism to bring it back down - consequently it's stuck nearly on the 3rd cog - as long as I use the outer rear gears it just rub too much - not good though...
when it stops raining! shall have a play with the derailer - thanks for the reply Smile

Try squirting some release oil into it (WD40 etc).
You say it's Shimano - is that Rapidfire (straight handlebars) or STI (drops)?
Some Rapidfire have removable covers but you have to be VERY careful not to lose the small parts.

Ride hard or ride home alone!
given the derailer a good clean - it seems to move okay in both directions, but the shift won't release it onto the smaller gears....
they are straight handlebars - so I guess rapidfire...
strangely every time I use the bike after it's been in active the shift works, but as soon as I move up the cogs, it won't go back down!
they do seem to have removeable covers - am guessing am opening a can of worms there though!!


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