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My Shimano DA 7703 (triple) 9 speed shifters have been steadily degrading and lubrication, new cables and service by a competent mechanic hasn't seemed to make a significant improvement. I estimate that I have about 9,000 miles on these.

I'd like to keep the triple drive train if at all possible as I already have another bike with a compact drive train. This bike is a Serotta Hors Cat used for travel, mountains, centuries, a "never have to worry" about a climb bike.

What are my best options?

Sam in Cincy
 

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Rub it............
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Check the front derailleur. The FD is very susceptible to having excessive friction due to sweat and drinks from water bottles. Physically pull on the cable, to make the FD shift. If resistance is excessive, then its the FD and not the shifter or cables.

DA shifters should last at least 3 times as long as what you have on them.
 

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This is REALLY common with all of the older 9spd STI levers. Remove the blade from the lever body with cables removed and drop it into good degreaser(I like orange for this). Let is sit for 24hrs or more(no limit). Take it out and flush it out witha TON of White LIghtening Clean Streak(or just use acetone if you've got it compressed). Then flush with a good WET but thin lube(I like T9), then fill it up with Finish line wet or Phils or any thick old school lube. Click it through all the gears a bunch of times and spend a long time wiping off all of the lube that dribbles out for a hour or two. If this doesn't fix it then nothing will. Seriously, I/we do this about once a week at the shop, IT WORKS WONDERS!
 

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MPCBIKE-

When you say remove the "blade" from the lever body what part do you refer to here? Does the cleaner affect the finish on the lever?
 

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davcruz, by the "blade" I mean the brk/shift lever and all of the internals. They come off by removing the pin in the body just behind the lever where it meets the "hood". Small allen screw in the botton and 1 spring, it's easy to do. If you don't want to do that just throw the whole lever(remove hood+cables) into the orange degreaser. Make sure internals are all submerged. The LONG soak makes sure that 100% of the orig grease is removed, acetone flush(clean streak) gets all the residue out of there. It will likely feel a little more "notchy", but 90% of the time 100% function is restored.
 

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Easier way

mpcbike said:
This is REALLY common with all of the older 9spd STI levers. Remove the blade from the lever body with cables removed and drop it into good degreaser(I like orange for this). Let is sit for 24hrs or more(no limit). Take it out and flush it out witha TON of White LIghtening Clean Streak(or just use acetone if you've got it compressed). Then flush with a good WET but thin lube(I like T9), then fill it up with Finish line wet or Phils or any thick old school lube. Click it through all the gears a bunch of times and spend a long time wiping off all of the lube that dribbles out for a hour or two. If this doesn't fix it then nothing will. Seriously, I/we do this about once a week at the shop, IT WORKS WONDERS!
IME it's a lot easier to just work it through the gears while shooting WD-40, TriFlow, etc. into the mechanism. You just let the solvent or lube drip out of the lever while shifting up and down the range. When things are working again, then shoot any liquid lube of your choice into the lever. TriFlow is a popular choice but most non-dry lubes will work. You don't have to take anything apart or remove the levers from the bars. Just have a rag handy to catch the drippings.
 

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'brifter' is f'ing stupid
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Kerry Irons said:
IME it's a lot easier to just work it through the gears while shooting WD-40, TriFlow, etc. into the mechanism. You just let the solvent or lube drip out of the lever while shifting up and down the range. When things are working again, then shoot any liquid lube of your choice into the lever. TriFlow is a popular choice but most non-dry lubes will work. You don't have to take anything apart or remove the levers from the bars. Just have a rag handy to catch the drippings.
i'm gonna agree w/ Kerry...again...
no need to remove the blade from the shifter. just shoot WD or TriFlow into the shifter and use a rag to catch what drips out...or let it drip onto your shop floor, whatever you prefer. shift the thing a bunch...99% of the time, problem solved. takes on average 5-10mins.
 
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