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  1. #1
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    Bar end cable routing??

    I'm finishing up my first touring bike build and have questions about how to route the shifter cable housing. Seems that running the cable out of the bar tape at the lower bend of the drop bars is traditional but what other options are there? I like the idea of running the cable housing all the way up the bars for the clean "Campy" look but am concerned about cable friction. Any thoughts out there on this??

    Thanks,
    John

  2. #2
    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    I run my bar end shifter cables 'ergo style'. Shifting is just as smooth and I like the setup. You will find that the stock cut-to-length SIS cables usually supplied with bar end shifters will be too short to run the length of the bars to the top, therefore you need to pick up longer SIS cable for this routing.
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  3. #3
    Member DaveMaddux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Fixer
    I run my bar end shifter cables 'ergo style'. Shifting is just as smooth and I like the setup. You will find that the stock cut-to-length SIS cables usually supplied with bar end shifters will be too short to run the length of the bars to the top, therefore you need to pick up longer SIS cable for this routing.
    Very nice! Very clean and uncluttered. I have never seen it done this way, or never noticed at least. I have one bike to convert to bar-end shifters sometime soon, will definitely do it this way.

    Dave

  4. #4
    Death fork? Naaaah!! top506's Avatar
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    Both my barcon set-ups (one friction, one index) route the cables in this fashion with no problems.
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    You know it's going to be a good day when the stem and seatpost come right out.

  5. #5
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    Thanks Fixer! That's exactly what I wanted to hear/see. I always thought it looked silly and unwieldly to run the housing out of the drop bend. Cable housing length shouldn't be a problem as I have about 20ft of bulk housing..........

    John

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    hello roadfix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by john_iverson
    Cable housing length shouldn't be a problem as I have about 20ft of bulk housing..........

    John
    Another thing I forgot to mention is that standard road length rear derailleur cable might be a bit on the short side, depending on your frame size. I had to use a tandem rear cable.
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  7. #7
    Year-round cyclist
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    Very important point. I would even say that they sometimes sell 2650 mm "tandem" cable as well as 3000 mm tandem cable. Well, I need something like 2900 mm.

    P.S. No shifting problems with my setup, which is not as clean as "The Fixer's" (I have a second lower stem for my handlebar bag). But if you want a few views from the cockpit, here they are.
    Michel Gagnon
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  8. #8
    Klaatu barada nikto cascade168's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by john_iverson
    Thanks Fixer! That's exactly what I wanted to hear/see. I always thought it looked silly and unwieldly to run the housing out of the drop bend. Cable housing length shouldn't be a problem as I have about 20ft of bulk housing..........

    John
    With all due respect, there is good reason to run bar end shifter cables out of the drop bend. It's a fact that every bend you add reduces shifting performance. And, the smaller the radii of any bends, the more you adversely affect shifting. While running all those cables all the way under the wrap you are adding two additional tight radius bends to the cable routing. It may look nice, but there is no way that it will shift as easily as one large radius routing (the one you think looks silly).

    The prime - and worst - example of this principle can be seen on any bike with a rear derailleur. The final loop that routes the shifter cable to the RD is almost always the worst case bend on the bike. This short bit of cable housing requires regular care to maintain optimal shifting and it tends to get easily gunked up. Fortunately, it's usually easy to unseat it from the chain stay cable guide (if the guide is slotted) and lube that part of the cable with some light lube.

    Any time you route a cable (brake or shift), the two prime objectives are to keep the number of bends to a minimum and keep the bend radii as large as you can. Cyclists have been routing bar end shifter cables out of the drop bend for a very long time for good reason.
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  9. #9
    just keep riding BluesDawg's Avatar
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    Although friction should and could be a problem, I've been running my cables this way for years without a problem. May be more likely to be a problem with indexed shifting. I have friction shifters, but I have run this way with indexed without a problem.
    The more you ride your bike, the less your ass will hurt.

  10. #10
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    While I agree with Cascade 168 in principle, I think both The Fixer, Top506 and myself are saying that it works fine. In my case, both my single and tandem are used in indexed mode (rear, obviously), and both shift crisply up and down. Well, maybe shifts take 0,5 s more when it's -15°C. I ride year round and while I like a well-functioning bike, I am definitely NOT the guy who cleans and degunks a drive train frequently. With two young children at home, I have other things to do!

    But it is true that the longer the routing, the more careful one needs to be with cable routing. Make sure the bends are good and that you don't kink the housing when the wheel flops. And if your down tube geometry allows you to cross the cables as shown on BluesDawg bike, do so, because it makes for larger curves and decreases cable resistance. In all cases, I have found that indeed the rearmost curve – from chain stay to derailleur is the most critical one. With compressionless housing (which is very rigid), I find I get the best results if I shape it before I put it in place.
    Michel Gagnon
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michel Gagnon
    While I agree with Cascade 168 in principle, I think both The Fixer, Top506 and myself are saying that it works fine.
    True. In fact, the cable routing is almost identical to Campy Ergos, plus perhaps an additional 6 inches of cable housing. My 9 speed system indexes flawlessly (even with the use of a slightly wider 8 speed chain which I happen to be running at this time).
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  12. #12
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    Mine is sort of a compromise between the standard lowest friction Cascade 168 routing and carrying the housings in the bar tape all the way to the stem like The Fixer and Top506. Frankly, I was afraid to try routing the housings in the bar tape all the way to the stem.

    Shifting is flawless.

    - Stan

  13. #13
    Klaatu barada nikto cascade168's Avatar
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    To all -

    I did not say it would not work. It will just not work as smoothly as the standard routing will. I am just saying what the accepted standard in the business is. If you were to go into a shop and have barcons installed and not state specifically how you wanted the bar wrap and cable routing, you would almost certainly get what I have described.

    With all of the mechanical problems and limitations associated with bicycles, the goal is - in most cases - to minimize these problems. The cable routing basics I discussed earlier adhere to this philosophy. Just like a weight weenie trying to shave 15gm off a bike, every little bit helps. You don't see many cases where people want to reduce the performance of their bicycle.
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  14. #14
    Klaatu barada nikto cascade168's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Fixer
    True. In fact, the cable routing is almost identical to Campy Ergos, ...
    Well, except for the additional 100+ degrees of bend (not inconsequential) you eliminate by using barcons and coming straight out. Every bit of bend you can eliminate from a cable makes a difference.
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  15. #15
    Klaatu barada nikto cascade168's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scooper
    Mine is sort of a compromise between the standard lowest friction Cascade 168 routing and carrying the housings in the bar tape all the way to the stem like The Fixer and Top506. Frankly, I was afraid to try routing the housings in the bar tape all the way to the stem.

    Shifting is flawless.


    I've never seen it done like that, but it is done in a most elegant fashion.

    I don't often comment on bikes shown here, but your Paramount is really beautiful. It's really worthy of a vintage bike show. I hope you get out and ride it sometimes. Really nice job ;-)))
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  16. #16
    59'er Mariner Fan's Avatar
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    I went traditional. I guess I didn't think you could run the cables under the bar tape completely. Actually, it doesn't cause a problem like this.


  17. #17
    Since 1938... JunkYardBike's Avatar
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    Assuming one uses the traditional routing, does the NOS stainless spiral housing provide any advantage? Or does modern, plastic lined housing provide superior performance with less maintenance?

  18. #18
    Muscle bike design spec robtown's Avatar
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    Should my ebay-bought barcons ever arrive - I have a question about finishing the bar tape. How do I keep the tape in place at the bar ends and bar tops? Do you use some sort of shrink tubing or electrical tape at the barcon end to keep it sharp? How about some close-ups of the bar ends?

    Without barcons I've started on the tops and used a little trick that keeps it clean without electrical tape, then overlapped the bar tape at the bar end. The plugs hold the ends in.
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  19. #19
    Paste Taster Retem's Avatar
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    you should be able to do it this way just wrap the cable housing then instal the shifter then thread the cable


    I am confused by this barcon is it a generic term because I have suntour gt-luxe bar end shifters on my old tourer and from what I understand they were copied by shimano later on
    I am dyslexic so bear with my posts.... [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  20. #20
    Death fork? Naaaah!! top506's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Retem


    I am confused by this barcon is it a generic term because I have suntour gt-luxe bar end shifters on my old tourer and from what I understand they were copied by shimano later on
    Acronym for BAR-end CONtrol.
    FWIW, Campy, Smiplex, and Universial made them before Sun Tour.
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