Broken Ratchet Spring in Shimano 105 5800 Shifter?

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  • Hi guys

    I have a left Shimano 105 5800 shifter that won't shift. I've opened it up a little and it looks as though the ratchet (might not be the correct term for this) no longer returns. It should be spring loaded, so my thoughts are that the spring has broken, but I can't see any obvious evidence of a broken spring. I have Googled this to try and get a view of what this "should" look like but haven't had any luck. I've added some photos of the part that should spring back but doesn't.

    Anyone had this problem before and solved it?


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  • Any ideas? Anyone got a 5800 shifter that they could look at?

  • Looks a bit mucky/sticky. I'd flush it out with degreaser or isopropyl alcohol as they can get gummed up and the return spring isn't strong enough to get it moving.

  • thanks for the response. I've shot a load of degreaser through it and I don't think that is the issue. There is no tension whatsoever on the ratchet, it can move freely as if there isn't a spring at all.

  • when you say it can move freely, do you mean the lever or the little ratchet circled in the pictures above?

  • I mean the little ratchet. When in an upright position, as the shifter would sit on the bars, it drops down off the the teeth of the mechanism as there is no tension on it.

  • ok, that bit is a pawl, see if you can find a fix related to that. honestly though, unless you can see an obvious problem, such as a spring having popped off, I would leave it.

    they're complicated and fiddly to put back together. even if it was taken apart and you found a broken part I'm not sure you could get spares. it would be easier to just replace. give it a try but it will be tricky to get working again. its not one of those things with a certain fix at the end.

    unfortunately if it was the lever not doing anything, there an easy fix for that.

  • Appreciate your input.

    It seems like it "should" be a fairly simple fix. If I tip the shifter upside down, gravity pushes the pawl into place and I can shift through all the gears perfectly well. It seems like the pawl just needs some pressure on it keeping it in place and without seeing the internals of this section I can't figure out where the pressure should come from/why the existing set up isn't providing any.

  • there should be a spring on there, I can't help thinking it may be the pawl thats broken rather than a spring. have a look though, if it doesn't work you have nothing to loose by pulling it apart. getting it back together is the hard part.

  • Long shot … 2 year old post.

    Did you ever get it fixed? I have the EXACT same problem :-(

  • It wasn't a 5800 lever, but a 105 hydraulic shifter. The ones with the big ugly bulbous hoods. Seems to be a really common problem with them that the spring breaks, but you can't buy replacement springs. My local bike shop managed to fix it by making a new spring from piano wire. The guy there said he'd seen loads of these come though and need similar fixes so was quite good at it by now.

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Broken Ratchet Spring in Shimano 105 5800 Shifter?

Posted by Avatar for Dropped.Bars @Dropped.Bars