Wacky shifting on my 9 speed Sora shifter. It's fine going up toward biggest cogs but skips 2-3 gears when going down from the biggest cog. It shifts fine when going down from the middle to smaller gears. Is the shifter dead or is something else at play? I've tried flushing it with wd-40 with little success.

  • 1
    Does it often click but do nothing, then when you click again go several gears? Did you clean the derailleur as well as the shifter? What state are your cables in? Not just when were the inners last replaced, but also how old are the outers?
    – Chris H
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 6:17
  • It sounds like when you say up and down you're referring to cog sizes, not gear ratios. Is that true?
    – Chris H
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 6:19
  • It's clicks and changes but if I click from a larger cog to smaller it'll jump 3 cogs down not 1. And yes cog not gear ratios
    – user53490
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 6:31
  • Derailer and cables cleaned and greased
    – user53490
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 6:31
  • Would you say it has done a substantial mileage? It sounds like the ratchet is worn out.
    – Noise
    Commented Oct 25, 2020 at 7:30

1 Answer 1


A delay in upshifting is often caused by the cable sticking in the housing. The force trying to move the derailleur outwards comes from just the derailleur spring which sometimes cannot overcome friction between the cable and the housing. The solution is new cables and housing, or sometimes just removing and cleaning the cable will work.

However, it sounds like you are getting multiple sprocket upshifts with a single lever click with no delay. This might be a problem with the shifter ratchet mechanism. You can diagnose this by detaching the shift cable from the derailleur and pulling it out of housing sections up to the housing on the handlebar. Put tension on the cable and work the shifter. If you can get it to skip positions as you upshift the the shifter is at fault.

If you have full-length housing you can still do this procedure but you may need a friend to pull on the cable at the back if the bike as you work the shifter.

  • Tried this last night. It's definately the shifter. Shifts up and down fine when there is not cable tension but as soon as you tension it skips. Guessing it's time to go looking for a new shifter. thanks for the help!
    – user53490
    Commented Oct 30, 2020 at 0:14

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