I have had the shifters for about a year and they have only been used moderately on my road bike. I was changing gear prior to putting it on the turbo when the right long shift lever went 'slack'and it would not change gear any more when trying to move to easier gears on the rear cassette. It felt like the lever had reached the stop limit and there was no l,konger any audible click. Moving to harder gears with the small lever still worked fine.

At first I thought the cable may have snapped but this was still intact. After a lot of fiddling I decided to take the shifter off the bike completely. I then removed the rubber hood cover and the small cover plate on the underside of the shifter.

I took out the gear cable just to make sure it was not fouling anything up in the mechanism. I also gave it a good flush through with silicone spray as I know old grease and debris can cause problems.

Once clean I spent some time looking at the mechanism and found the following;

  • when the shifter is held upside down it seems to work properly and a small silver flange engages with the splined cog as you press the big lever across. It shifts up one gear at a time without problem and there is an audible click each time.

  • when the shifter is turned the right way up i.e as fitted on the bike, the small silver flange drops downwards slightly (as per photo-left of picture) and no longer engages the splined cog. The lever therefore just pushes right the way across instead of moving the gears one at a time. There is no audible click. I did try refitting the cover plate to see if this held the flange in place but no joy.

It seems like the silver flange should be under some kind of tension to hold it in place as gravity makes it fall downwards and away from the splined cog. I assumed maybe a small spring or something had broken. I therefore ordered a brand new shifter and found after fitting it to the bike the exact same thing happened.

Anyone else had the same problem or am I doing something wrong in the fitting process?

Photo attached showing silver flange on cog.

enter image description here

  • 2
    Shimano will probably warranty replace this. You'll find no spares are available so repair is a moot point. A decent shop will handle the warranty as part of a service generally.
    – Noise
    Commented Apr 17, 2021 at 21:45
  • I’m not sure, but is a shifter supposed to work without cable pull? Does it work properly if you put in a new cable and pull on the cable?
    – Michael
    Commented Apr 18, 2021 at 9:27
  • Please do not put any SOLVED into the question title. Instead, select one of the answers under your question as accepted. You may have to wait some time before you can accept an answer of your own. Commented Apr 18, 2021 at 12:42
  • Apparently I've exactly the same issue with the rear-shifter. Long lever moves two, sometimes only one time, with feelable/audible click, while the short lever moves infinite times. This got worse w/i a couple of shifts 6x, 4x, 2x/1x max. (Maybe even reduced to 1x-9x on the larger cog end since a couple of months. Not clear because until now I thought another issue was the cause for that.). Can you give me some guidance on how to remove the shifter? Do I have to remove the cables or should I be able to inspect and fix this with cables attached? Commented Aug 31, 2021 at 20:09
  • 1
    Easiest would be to take the shifter off the bars but leave all cables attached. You can then turn it upside down to inspect it properly. Look at my photo and see if the small spring is in place at the points shown by yellow and white arrows. If it isn't then follow instructions to move it back into place.
    – BigErnie
    Commented Sep 2, 2021 at 9:57

2 Answers 2


Thanks for the responses. Spent some more time looking at the problem and managed to solve it!

One end of the small spring seen in the centre of the picture fits through a small hole to keep it in place. This spring originally had no tension on it and seemed broken.

The other end of the spring had somehow slipped past the silver flange and was on the wrong side of it. This end of the spring has a small piece that should put pressure on the silver flange and only allows it to move slightly off the cog.

Once I had worked out how to get the spring in the right place it all works fine.

The way I did it was to pull the end visible out of the hole so the whole spring rotates. Find the other end of it and squeeze it past the silver flange so it rests on top. It is flexible so quite easy to do.

The larger end of the spring is then under tension and you can pull it back up and fit it through the hole. This is a bit fiddly but achievable.

Photo of the finished result with yellow arrow pointing to large end of spring going through hole and white arrow pointing to other smaller end resting on silver flange under tension.

Hopefully it may help somebody else. I wonder how many shifters have been discarded because of this small spring!

silver flange with spring


In addition, if this issue happens on a ride, and you can't change up (it's not clicking and the lever moves without tension against it), just hold your thumb against it as you change up. That will be enough for it to keep it contained and register a click and allowing you to shift.

  • to clarify this comment is aimed at the type of gear shifter you see on a drop handle bike, eg Shimano Sora.
    – tolsky
    Commented Mar 21, 2023 at 0:34
  • Hold your thumb against what part?
    – DavidW
    Commented Mar 21, 2023 at 4:18

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