Derailleur/Brake cable maintenance

Rohan Kini Uncategorized

Feel your shifters and brakes are no longer shifting/braking as smoothly as they used to ?

Might because of the tons of grit in the cables ! Rains especially play havoc here.

Luckily its very simple to clean the cables. In either case make sure you don’t loosen any bolts – as that would require a resetting of brakes/gears which is unnecessary and can be expensive.

What you would need:
  • a bicycle (Duh)
  • a clean rag
  • WD 40
  • some lubricant (I normally use the tried n tested Singer sewing machine oil which is widely available)
Time to bake:

about 10 – 15 mins for the complete job

Instructions:

For Derailleur cables

Front – Shift to the lowest gear and the cables should slacken up. After which you can easily get the cables out of the brackets (cable stops) on the frame.

Rear – for the rear derailleurs you can easily do this by shifting to the highest gear.

  • clean the exposed cable with a clean rag that has some WD40 sprayed on it. The WD40 should help remove the more obstinate elements.
  • go one casing-section at a time. Add a drop or two of your chosen lubricant in the casing opening, and vigorously slide the casing on the cable so that the oil gets in. This action should help remove the muck which is sitting on the inside of the casing. Keep cleaning the surface of the exposed cable. You should see your clean rag get progressively dirty.

For Brake cables

Its pretty much the same procedure for brake cables.

If done properly, the brakes should feel snappy and your shifting should feel much smoother ! If not maybe its time to get it back to BOTS :) or wait for the next basic maintenance workshop

This was also discussed recently on BlueCollarMTB, one of our favorite goto biking sites ( link to the article )

Rohan Kini
WHAT I LOVE ABOUT CYCLING I love riding my bike. Whether its a simple commute, a high intensity road roace, a jaw grinding brevet, fixie rides thru packed Indian city or a kick ass technical single track - I love it all. Apart from riding bicycles, I love being all geeky and know everything there is to know about bicycles, technology, bike fit and service. I started BUMSONTHESADDLE to share this passion for cycling. DISCIPLINE: Partial towards MOUNTAIN BIKING but love it all CURRENT BIKE(S): Specialized Rockhopper, Specialized Tarmac, Pure Cycles Original DREAM BIKE: S-Works Epic HT & S-Work Roubaix OTHER PASSIONS: Technology, Photography, Baking, Travel and Reading