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Internal Bike Cable Hacks | How To Replace Internal Brake & Gear Cables

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– Internal cables, they look absolutely fantastic, the reason being because they hide your cables, and quite frankly, there's not many cables out there which are a real joy or delight to look at There is a downside though, on some components and frames, they can be a real nightmare to thread through

So today I'm going to go through a few hacks and tips so you can fit yours just a little bit easier (reverberating percussive synth) Firstly then, let's clear up a few things and that is that quite a lot of frames and components out there actually have internal guides for you to be able to route through your hoses or your cables However, not all frames and components are created equally Hence the reason for this video So, with a few different bits and pieces that you're likely to have laying around inside your own workshop, this will be a piece of cake for you to be able to complete

Right, my first tip or bit of advice for you has to be if you're using a standard folding style cable always use a fresh new one, the reason being it's likely that one, you're threading through this cable in the inside of a frame or handlebar, that sort of thing, it's going to end up bashing against the inside wall of those components which means if it's not new, it's going to fray A new cable, they tend to be soldered very finely on the end, preventing it from fraying If you're going to use an old cable, well, don't say I didn't warn you, but a bit of advice, what you could do is freshly trim it really, really short and then just add a dab of Super Glue to try and seal it up before you start the threading process For the purpose of this video, I'm actually going to use a pair of handlebars because, well, it's the same as a frame, let's face it We're putting a cable in and we're trying to fish it out at the other end, but a pair of handlebars normally is slightly more difficult because you've got bigger bends and tighter curves, if that makes sense

It's not as easy to actually fish out So, first up, let's imagine that we want to fit a new outer cable through the holes So, we've got a insert here and it exits underneath Now sadly, underneath these handlebars, as good as they are, there is no internal routing So, it means if I want to fix a new outer cable, if I go ahead and put it in there, it's not going to be that easy to move around inside, the reason being those outer cables aren't that flat, you see

So, I've got myself here a normal break cable, so the internal one, and then I'm just going to find its way inside, gradually poke it around until it comes out or starts to try and come out at the other end Now, these things aren't always that easy to actually spot That's where this comes in So, providing, of course, you can spot it, if not a torch is always really good or certainly aim it towards the light or sun Those things are going to make this job just a little bit easier too, but this in my hand here is an old bit of outer brake cable that I've stripped some of the plastic sheathing away, and then I've simply grabbed onto one end and pulled it really hard

So, I've got this sort of corkscrew-like grabber or gripper and when I see that internal cable, I can try and hook it out and pull it out of the hole Now, it will take a little while, but it's a lot easier than just trying to poke around and hope for the best 'cause that's not going to get you anywhere very fast Once it pops out, you can then use this cable as a guide for the outer cable to go through Believe me, it's going to make that job a lot easier There we are, it's out

Now if you went away just poking around in there just trying to get it to come out the other hole, you're going to take forever and ever, even if you're using thin little pliers in there, it's not that easy to grab the end But now we've got this in place, well, the outer cable is going to be able to slide on there nice and easily, and then just pop out the other end Alright, what then if that following step you just dismiss and you couldn't be bothered, well, there is another option You could try putting through the outer cable to start with and while hoping for the best, it's normally ever so stiff getting it around and inside the first bend, but what have I got here, you may ask? Well this is just a bit of really thin garden wire, the sort of thing that I hold my sunflowers upright with, and while I've cut it down a little bit, and hopefully I can match it into the end of that outer cable, try and get it to come out Again, it does take quite a bit of time sometimes, and there is no sort of one-solution-for-all type thing, but once you hook onto it, you're going to be laughing

Now the other bit of cable I'll just show you then, that unraveled cable, that won't do the job because it doesn't tend to be, the opening isn't quite big enough to actually wrap around the outer cable, but I've got it (upbeat funky music) So, what then if you've got an internal cable that needs replacing but you're going to keep the outer cables? Well firstly, I would never advise to do that I would always say replace the whole system You aren't going to get better gear shifting or braking, but with all that aside, we've got a problem Let's try and solve it

Let's think that this is a frame or even a handlebar, for instance, but it's more likely to be a frame, but it's just a scaled down version It's easier to explain So, first up, we've got a bit of outer cable which comes from your shift lever, stops in the frame there, then you've got an inner cable which runs all the way through and it doesn't have any type of housing or anything and it comes out the other end And then you've got a little bit of outer cable then into a rear derailleur, for example Well, what we're going to do then, because if we take out this inner cable, you're not going to be able to replace it that easily, let's face it, because you've got to try and find those tiny little holes, entry and exit holes, at either end of the frame

So, what we're going to do is undo the clamp cable of the component and just, well, lose the component or keep it in place on the bike, then the last bit of cable out the back there, you're just going to remove, and then you've got the inner cable revealed This is where this comes in handy It's a little bit of cable sheathing So, pop down to your local bike shop They should have some

It's available for both gear and brake inners It's obviously a gear inner and it's a little bit thinner in diameter, about, well normally a couple of millimeters or rather a couple of fractions of a millimeter and that's not going to fit over the brake, so make sure you get the right stuff If in doubt, just get yourself the brake, 'cause that will do both Slide it over that inner cable You want it to be nice and long, and it will, it will find its way over it alright, like you can see and just keep pushing it until it pops out at the other end

Normally the actual set-up of the cable when it's under tension, it's going to be able to slide on there nice and easily Obviously my little set-up here is not under any tension at all inside of a frame or lever It's just a cable which is loosely placed inside, but once that is on, this inner sheath, like you can see here, it just pokes out onto the cable So here's my cable from there you can see popping out of the actual handlebar there, or the frame entry and exit point, at which point what you want to make sure is that the far end, so the end with derailleur or where the brake caliper is, that doesn't go inside of the frame whatsoever You want to make sure it stays outside

So, if in doubt, maybe tape it onto the component or the frame, that'll be all right, and then when it's out of both ends of the frame, it's normally a frame you're doing this on, sometimes a handlebar, you are good to go Then you can just whip out that inner cable, no problem You've got a guide from end right the way through to the other, meaning you can take that cable out of your shifter and then you can simply fit a new one in and you can reuse the manky old outer cable So, let's be honest, just put some new ones in there because there's no point in reusing dodgy old outers, and then when it goes through, it simply threads back inside of that plastic sheath, pops out the other end, easily done (smooth synth music) Now if you are really struggling with an internal cable as it goes down through the down tube and around the bottom bracket junction, the best bit of advice I can actually give you there is to remove your chain set, remove those cranks and maybe even the bottom bracket in some cases just so you can actually see what's going on a little bit easier, as well as possibly freeing up any obstructions in there

Now, if you've got yourself a hydraulic brake set-up, for instance, it goes all the way through the frame and you're finding that a bit of a struggle, well, the folks at Park Tool, they even have a bit of a kit which threads on the internals of a hydraulic hose It does also thread into the internal of a brake and gear outlet, though they don't strictly recommend that, but it is possible And then, with this really strong magnet, you can control this all the way through a carbon or aluminum frame taking it from one end through to the other It's a really ingenious bit of kit and one of our colleagues here, Peter, he swears by it But let me know, though, what bits and what tips do you use to actually get your internal cables routed nice and easy

Let me know down there in the comments section below Mr Tom Last, well he uses a bit of cotton in a vacuum cleaner So get involved down there, and also remember to check out the GCN shop at shopglobalcyclingnetwork

com where we've got a whole heap of goodies for you to check out, and now I have two more great videos How 'about clicking just down here and just down here

Source: Youtube

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