Urban Velo

Paul Component Engineering Thumbie Shifter Mounts Review

paulthumbie-7

Top-mount thumbshifters are a classic design that the big players have left behind in the race to make a “better” shifter. Other designs are undeniably more ergonomic and capable of faster shifts, all without changing your grip on the bars. But some of us are hooked on thumbshifters, if for nothing else than their proven durability through simplicity. No matter the conditions, no matter the muck and cold, thick gloves and rust, thumbshifters continue to shift. In fact, I still have two pairs of 20+ year old Suntour thumbshifters in service on bikes, along with this set of Paul Thumbies that I’ve been running for over 5 years.

Paul Thumbies are the answer to those of us that want indexing beyond 8-speeds or SRAM or Campagnolo compatibility but want to run top-mounts too. These mounts transform bar end and time-trial shifters into old school thumbshifters. My poison? 9-speed Shimano bar end shifters mated to Paul Thumbies, run in friction mode on my 10-speed dirt road touring rig. Adjustable front derailleur trim and you can shift the entire cassette in one movement with the right touch. I’d go so far as to say, “It works every time!” but I’m to understand the phrase has already been taken. This is a shifter for the tinkerers and the explorers, best suited to people with a secret stash of parts and more ideas about bike setup than available rides to test it.

Paul Thumbies are available for $74 per pair in either silver or black, in either 22.2, 26.0 or 31.8 clamp sizes (mountain bars and road stem clamp sizes) and with Shimano, SRAM, Microshift or Campagnolo mounts. Current Thumbies have hinged clamps for easier installation and removal.

4 Comments

  1. Don AndersonOctober 15, 2014 at 11:43 am

    Or you can get Sunrace thumb shifters complete with levers, indexed for 8 or 9 speeds for a third of the cost of Pauls. I’ve been using a pair with 9 speed indexed shifting for a couple of years now, it’s also flawless and far cheaper.

  2. KinchOctober 17, 2014 at 7:04 pm

    That price is RIDICULOUS. It’s a fucking aluminum clamp.

  3. Slow Joe CrowOctober 21, 2014 at 2:33 pm

    Paul must be charging a hefty markup on direct sales because Universal Cycles is selling Thumbies for $56.00 a pair. That still isn’t much of a bargain unless you already have shifters since Universal also has IRD 9 speed thumb shifters and Microshift 9 & 10 speed parts for $90-110 complete.

  4. hippywarriorMay 9, 2015 at 8:26 pm

    I think Paul charges that price because they don’t pay school girls 1.00 per week to make them………ya think? :-)

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