49. How To Install a Rear Derailleur

Removal and installation of a standard bolt-on rear derailleur.

IMPORTANT: Nuts and bolts on your bike should always be tightened to the manufacturer's specifications.
How To Install a Rear Derailleur
DVD Vol. 2 DVD Volume 2
This video is available on DVD

In this tutorial we’ll learn how to replace a standard bolt-on rear derailleur.

Tools

For this job you’ll need a 5mm hex key for the derailleur’s mounting bolt, and a 2.5mm or 3mm hex key for the jockey wheels if you will not be removing the chain to clean or replace it. If you are removing the chain you may need a chain tool depending on your type of chain. You’ll also need wire cutters and a 9 or 10mm metric open end wrench, or a 5 or 6mm hex key to remove and install the rear shift cable. The last thing you’ll need is a phillips (+) screwdriver for adjusting the derailleur’s limit screws.

Rear Derailleur Removal

The first step is to shift your chain onto the smallest rear sprocket. Then pull off the shift cable’s end cap and loosen the cable pinch bolt. Remove the cable from the derailleur.

Now you’ll need to remove the chain from the derailleur. Some chains have a special connector pin that need replacing if removed, so if you don’t need to remove the chain for cleaning or replacement you can simply remove the lower jockey wheel and rotate the cage plate to release the chain. If you are removing the chain, disconnect a link and pull the chain through the jockey wheels.

Now you can unthread the derailleur’s mounting bolt all the way counter clockwise to remove the derailleur.

Rear Derailleur Installation

Before installing the new rear derailleur, apply some waterproof grease to the mounting bolt. Then thread it part way into the derailleur hanger, and rotate it clockwise to make sure the b-screw or tab is sitting behind the flat on the back of the hanger. Then fully tighten the mounting bolt.

If your chain is still on the bike, undo the bottom jockey wheel and thread the chain over the top pulley. Then re-install the lower jockey wheel. If you have removed the chain, re-route the chain through the jockey wheels and reconnect it. Search the site for tutorials on how to use a chain tool or a quick release chain link.

Rear Derailleur Set-up

Now preset the high-limit (H) screw so the upper jockey wheel is roughly in line with the smallest sprocket when viewed from behind.

Thread the shift cable back into the derailleur, pull it tight and tighten the anchor bolt so the cable flattens. Then find a bare stretch of cable and give it a good pull to make sure the cable is seated and has no slack. Then loosen the cable, pull it tight again and re-tighten it.

Now you’ll need to adjust the rear derailleur as shown in previous tutorials. If necessary, trim the cable so there is about 2 inches remaining. Then slide on a cable end cap and crimp it in place.

Tags

Discuss this topic in the Derailleur Forums

08/01 Question about hangers

I want to replace the rear derailleur on my current mountain bike, but because it is a cheap low end full suspension, it doesn't have a hanger on the frame and only takes a bolt on derailleur. Is there anyway I can adapt the frame so that it is compatible with a hanger? the derailleurs I want all require a hanger. Thank you.... Read more >>

07/29 Front gear goes down but going up is problem

I just got my new Saracen Urban ESC. It has 3 gears in front and 7 at the back.
Couple of issues I have noticed when changing gears. The front derailleurs works fine when changing in to a lower ring. But when i try to shift it up I have to press the shifter twice. First time does not change the gears and make a horrible metallic sound, feels as if the bike is gonna crash.

How can I fix it?... Read more >>

07/28 Newer Mountain Bike Gear Skipping and/or not catching

I just bought a Mountain Bike that I suppose you would classify as a beginner one (Giant Revel 2) and it has been a great experience getting back into riding. Not too long ago I sort of crashed, what I mean by that is I hit the side of an object and ever since that point my front shifting is seeming to suffer. First problem was that shifting from 1st gear to 2nd gear would not always work, it just wouldn't catch and would make a clicking noise as expected. Also shifting into third would do the same. I tried adjusting the shifting knob (the one by the actual gear change on the handlebar) and no... Read more >>

07/20 Takes ages to shift up a gear

Hello.
Thanks for taking the time to read my problem. I have recently bought a new bike. It is around 3 weeks old and done 112 miles on it. Recently it has started taking ages to shift up a gear on the rear cassette and occasionally it feels like it is trying to change gear on its own. The shift down is fine at the moment. In another 3 weeks the bike will have a 6 week free service. Is it worth waiting till then to let the professionals look at it or is it a quick fix I can do myself? I want to keep it in tip top condition so dont want it getting any worse or even damage it by putting mo... Read more >>

07/18 Rear and front derailleurs won't shift

Hello,

I'm trying to do some basic bike repairs, but I've stumbled upon a problem I cannot solve.

I have a Trek Lexa women's road bike (~3 years old) with Shimano derailleurs. It was in need of a tune-up as shifting between gears was not smooth and the chain was rubbing the bracket; however it was capable of shifting. I started by unhooking the shifter cable and adjusting the high and low limits of the rear derailleur. When I hooked the cable back up (tightened the rear adjustment screw, pulled on the cables, tightened the cable as much as I could while the gears we... Read more >>

07/16 Shifter Cable in FD Won't Listen

I've watched hours of tutoring videos all over the internet in search for an answer. This forum is probably my last shot at it. The gears on the left (for the front derailleur) don't change the gears on my bike, because the shifter cable is out. I've been trying to reinsert my shifter cable for my FD, but only gear one and two work, and it's too stiff for the third gear. Ahhhh! Please help!!... Read more >>

07/16 Shifter moves all the way to high gear by itself

Rear Derailleur shifter: Falcon Index System thumb shifter.

The high and low limits are set correctly because I can shift through all the gear with no problem. I just have to hold the shifter in place. If I let go, it will move all the way to high gear (small cog). It won't stay in anything but the highest gear by itself.... Read more >>

07/16 Genesis Roadtech

I recently purchased a Genesis Roadtech bike from Wal-Mart. It's a road bike but I have no idea how to use the shifters on this bike. The image is where the shifters are located.

I'm just getting into cycling so some of this stuff is still very new to me.

Thank you in advance for help advice.... Read more >>

07/08 Frustrating issue with rear gears

Hi guys

I currently ride a Giant Revolt 2, 2014 model Cyclocross bike.

Last week during my commute to work I lost a spacer from my rear cassette so had it repaired by a local guy who is a friend of mine.

He managed to get every gear sweet bar the highest (small cog) on the rear cassette, it shifts nicely from the second smallest cog down to the smallest cog but it won't go back up - only on that one lowest gear.

He took it to his workshop over night and fit a new cassette and removed a link from the chain as the chain was still slack but that... Read more >>

07/06 What gear shifter for my bike?-Sturmey Archer photos

Hello
I have a Sturmey Archer gears on my bike with a following shifter:[attachment=5222]

However I would like to change this shifter for modern one -the one I currently have is a bit rusty and its though to change gears sometimes.I have found this model:
[attachment=5223]

SPECIFICATIONS:

HSJ823

BLACK/SILVER

3 SPEED NIMBUS SHIFTER

FITS 22.2MM BARS.

Will this shifter be suitable to replace the old one?
Thanks... Read more >>

07/05 Help a total bike dummy fix her bike!

Hello!

I have a second hand, 18-speed, index shifting bike that I use for getting back and forth to school and running some errands. I've been having trouble shifting gears on it. The right gear shifter works fine, but the left one is struggling. When I twist the shifter into a new gear, the actual gear doesn't change. It will however randomly clunk into a new gear when I'm riding and haven't recently changed gears.

I've attached a photo showing the back gears. Let me know if something different would be more helpful!

I really now nothing about bik... Read more >>

07/05 Derailleur or pulley?

Sorry if this has already been covered, I'm new to all this

I have recently had my cogs and chain replaced on my mountain bike due to wearing which caused my chain to slip in a number of gears, have spent a few days adjusting the derailleur thanks to online videos, and seem to have everything working perfectly with the exception on one gear,

when the chain is on the largest chainring and the largest on the back the chain seems to jump and make a loud noise, I have noticed the lower jockey wheel may be the cause of this, as this is where the chain seems to be jumping ... Read more >>

07/04 Mongoose Gear Shifter/V Brake not going back past 4

Hi, I'm new to the forum and this is my first post. I don't quite know how to explain it but will try to do the best I can.

I have a Mongoose mountain bike which I picked up for nothing. It had 2 broken spokes which I fixed quite easily. Bike works really well apart from the gears for the back sproket. It will change from 4 to 7 and back from 7 to 4 but then doesn't go any further. I have uploaded a Youtube video



I don't know what the parts are but there is a little cog that works like a ratchet. Once this gets to 4 it reaches the max for the lever. i.e.... Read more >>

06/28 Cant down shift

Okay, so about a month ago I bought this used bike to have a cheap way into the sport. It's been working great for the past few weeks, but then I started to notice my rear shifter getting tight. I have twist grip shifters. It's gotten to the point where it won't down shift at all. I'm certain it's the shifter though and not the derailleur as I can I push the derailleur into gear and it allows me to downshift if I'm holding it in. It seems like the cable is too tight or something. I'm not sure how to go about fixing this issue.... Read more >>

06/26 Need help fixing rear derailleur

I have trek bike and use it occasionally. My rear derailleur is broken and part of it hanging. I tried it put it in but it doesn't hold on anymore.

Please suggest if it can be easily fixed or need to take to a bike repair shop. Added some pictures... Read more >>

New Thread
How To Install a Rear Derailleur
Repair Guide / Help Forums

Free Email Updates: