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  1. #1
    Senior Member Bob J's Avatar
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    Installing Shimano SIS Shift Cables and Housings

    Reading the instructions it says that a special grease is used on the gear cables and it shouldn't be mixed with other greases. However it doesn't tell me what this special grease is or where I can get it.

    Then it says I should grease the cables before inserting them into the housings.

    Now what do I grease them with if I can't get this special grease? :confused:




    TIA

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    I would say get rid of the instructions. I bought an XTR cable set a while back and the instructions were vague at best.

    I do not grease my cables. More expensive cable systemes use coated cables and housings with should not be greased (that said, of course, the XTR set comes with ferrules that have some kind of goop inside).

    I have heard of people using light machine oil on cables to prevent rusting, but I do not know of special cable grease.

    The thing with greasing cables, is that it can collect dirty can slow down the cables a bit.

    If in doubt, you can check with the shop where you got the cables and see what they recommend you do.

    - Jeff

  3. #3
    Just ride. roadbuzz's Avatar
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    Barnett's says oil and grease aren't necessary, but you can dribble a light weight oil down inside of the casing. I usually grease new cables with whatever I've got, then wipe it all off before inserting them. I do it more to reduce corrosion then anything. 'Course the cables are stainless steel... it's probably a waste of time and grease.

  4. #4
    Not-so-Senior Member
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    I've heard from various sorces that you should use Tri-Flow, whatever that is (I guess it's American). You should pour it into the housing until it starts pouring out the other end, then insert the cable. I use 3-in1 oil, which seems to work fine. But you definately should not use WD40, as it will corrode the lining of the housing.

    Of course if you have teflon-coated cables, you won't need to lube them.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    I understand 3-in-1 is a vegetable based oil, which turns to gum over age, so shouldn't be used on a bike

  6. #6
    Year-round cyclist
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    Originally posted by roadbuzz
    Barnett's says oil and grease aren't necessary, but you can dribble a light weight oil down inside of the casing. I usually grease new cables with whatever I've got, then wipe it all off before inserting them. I do it more to reduce corrosion then anything. 'Course the cables are stainless steel... it's probably a waste of time and grease.

    Maybe, but my oiled cables don't rust whereas those I have forgotten to oil or grease do rust after 2-3 Winters. No structural problem that I am aware of, far from that. It's just that a rusted cable slides much less easily in its housing.

    Proper installation also helps. The worst offenders are little pieces of housing found near the bottom bracket of old bikes. They have open ends on the upside and the bottom part of the housing collects salt water and humidity. BTW, mudflaps help control the problem.

    For oiling, my best success is with a light or "dry" lubricant, which doesn't collect sand.
    Michel Gagnon
    Montréal (Québec, Canada)

  7. #7
    Back in the Sooner State
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    I'll use tri flo on housing that I'm recycling (hey, I'm a cheap SOB, what can I say?). On new housing and cables, I don't use anything.

    The real problem that most folks have in the long run is the maintenance and adjustment of their derailleurs and chain, not the presence of lube on the cables.

  8. #8
    Senior Member miamijim's Avatar
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    Barnetts is wrong. If the instructions say to lube them, then why not? Never ever ever never use 3-n-1 oil or WD-40 to lube anything on anything you own. Use white lithium grease (cheap) or what ever you lube your chain with. I use Shimanos grease.
    WWW.CYCLESPEUGEOT.COM 2005 Pinarello Dogma; 1991 Paramount PDG 70 Mtb; 1976? AD Vent Noir; 1989 LeMond Maillot Juane F&F; 1993? Basso GAP F&F; 1989 Terry Symmetry; 2003 Trek 4700 Mtb; 1983 Vitus 979

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