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Cables-clean or buy?(7 posts)

Cables-clean or buy?greyghost
Dec 29, 2003 4:27 PM
The shifting and braking on my bike was starting to feel very sluggish by the end of riding last summer. Setup is ultegra. Is cleaning the cables effective, and if so,is the time worth it? The cables themselves should be easy to clean, but how do you clean the housing, then get the cleaner out to lube it properly? I am thinking of just dropping the $20 and getting new cables, but is that just wasting a Franklin? Any wisdom would be appreciated.
re: Cables-clean or buy?russw19
Dec 29, 2003 4:31 PM
Buy new cables and housing. It's cheap and will make all the difference. Get some good quality teflon coated cables and teflon lined housing and it is even better than new.

re: Cables-clean or buy?greyghost
Dec 29, 2003 5:19 PM
If I do get new teflon cables, what are high quality? I can get no name cables from Nashbar or Performace for pretty cheap. But if I go with one of the name brands (IRD, Aztec, Nokon, gore-tex, etc.)they not only get very pricey very quick, but many of them seem geared towards mountain biking where a sealed system is much more important. Would a house brand wire work well?
Go to your LBSrussw19
Dec 29, 2003 11:37 PM
Go to your LBS and ask them to order you a set of Quality Teflon cables. They are sold by Quality which is most shops outside of California's biggest distributor. They make a house brand of teflon cables that is nice and priced very reasonable.

The IRD cables and the Nokon cables are fantastic because they use alloy compressionless housing. They are also pretty much a sealed system like older Gore Ride-On cables. I think Avid makes a set of Flak Jacket cables for Shimano road shifters and brakes, but not Campy Shifters (the cable head is slightly smaller for Campy.)

Something that you can always look for out of a cable (brake or shift) is that it is shaved to a round pattern so it's smooth in the housing. It's hard to picture, but think of a regular cable.. it's a bunch of braided strands and the outside is not uniform because of the braids. Shaved cables are shaved around the outside so the outside is smooth without the edges from the braids. Again, hard to picture based on that, but they reduce friction. Also some companies put an anti-friction coating on their cables. It's like a grey or blue color cable. Quaility also sells these.

If your LBS can't get you a set, post back here to my attention and I will get them for you.

Found a picture...russw19
Dec 29, 2003 11:39 PM
This is a Quality Teflon coated cable and the picture shows what I was talking about with shaved cables...

Just clean/lube the cablesKerry Irons
Dec 29, 2003 5:00 PM
If you remove the cables, wipe them clean, dribble them with oil or light grease (or a mix), and dribble oil down the end of the casing, you'll add signficantly to the life and performance of the cables. It's not as much dirt as it is the lube drying or the casing lining wearing through. Lube will fix this. If it doesn't help, then replace the cables.
I try to clean them and lube them first.dzrider
Dec 30, 2003 2:05 PM
If the housing doesn't twist freely around the cable I try lubing as described in other postings. If I can't get it nice and free or I see rust anywhere I replace both cable and housing.