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Housing(3 posts)

Jan 5, 2003 6:44 PM
Are brake and derailleur housings interchangable?
I am a little confused. I was looking at some catalogs. Brake housing are 5mm and derailleur housings are both 4mm and 5mm. How do I make the choice?

Short answer...biknben
Jan 6, 2003 12:48 PM
If you're buying new cable and housing it doesn't matter. Shimano started using 4mm housing a few years ago claiming it provided better shifter performance.

There are rare instances where you would want to match specific cables to specific housing. For instance, MTB brake cables are thicker than road brake cables and would require the thicker housing. Also, Gore Ride-on cables require the Ride-on housing.
re: HousingAndy M-S
Jan 6, 2003 3:16 PM
They're not interchangeable. Brake housing has a spiral wrap designed to handle compression--what happens when you pull on the brake levers. Shifter housing (in both sizes) is also known as "compressionless" housing. It is much more fragile than brake housing, and consists of a plastic tube surrounded by parallel strands. This housing is designed to transmit a signal cable. It will not handle compression. Thought experiment. Take a piece of compressionless housing and think about what would happen if you had to push a cable, hard, against the liner. It would spread the parallel strands and pop through the housing, is what! And that would mean, no brakes.