Two fold question. MTB has 7 speed cog and 3 chain-rings. Shimano Deore LX rear derailleur and Acera front derailleur with rapid fire shifters.

First, the right shifter will now only index four cogs. I've checked and adjusted the rear derailleur and even when cable is detached the shifter will only advance or descend four clicks. Is it repairable?

Second, can I replace the rapid fire shifters with grip shifters?

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    Grip shifters are a hallmark of a cheap nasty BSO bike. Why would you downgrade? – Criggie Nov 7 '17 at 20:05
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    Lazy/temp fix is to blast the pod shifter with solvent. Its gummed up with old lube that has hardened, possibly made worse by dust from MTBing offroad. Solvent to remove the old lube, let it dry, then re-lubricate. – Criggie Nov 7 '17 at 20:06
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    I work on a lot of used bikes with a wide variety of shifters. Twist grip shifters tend to be the least reliable and most difficult to operate, even when they're working. There are a few brands that are OK, but I can't name them. – Daniel R Hicks Nov 8 '17 at 1:21
  • @Criggie - I agree with your assessment of grip/twist shifters but this is my wife's ride and she finds the rapid fire shifters cumbersome. Thanks for the input. – mikei Nov 9 '17 at 14:42

You can try saturating the shifter internals with wd-40, which may help. You're not going to find replacement parts, so they're typically not repairable.

7 speed shifters from Microshift or in Shimano's Tourney line or SRAM's Attack! line are compatible, so I'd suggest just spending the 10-20 bucks and getting one of those instead. The SRAMs are grip shifts, as are some of the Tourney shifters. The SRAM ones are probably a bit better quality (note the Attack! name; regular SRAM shifters will not work). The Microshift shifters and Shimano Tourney shifters will be easiest to find.

That being said, my 7 speed bike had the shifters go after higher quality than the bargain basement Shimano shifters weren't so easy to find (altus/acera+). I ended up moving to 8 speed and getting a good quality shifter.

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  • Thank you for input. Parts are hard to get where we live and I always try to repair if possible. I'll try the oil but look in the the SRAM Attack and Microshift – mikei Nov 9 '17 at 0:44
  • @mikei - where do you live? Note that you can always go with friction shifters, which are effectively indestructible. – Batman Nov 9 '17 at 12:30
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    @Batman- We live in Belize C.A. where most bikes are of the cheep single speed beach cruiser type. I have found only one higher quality Bike Shop in the entire country and it has very limited stock. Shipping from the US is expensive and usually takes more than a month for arrival. – mikei Nov 9 '17 at 14:55
  • @mikei - I'd suggest buying a friction shifter then. They're much cheaper than index shifters (<10 USD a pair for good quality stuff, versus 2-3x that at least for index shfiters), and are very difficult to go wrong. – Batman Nov 10 '17 at 2:08

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