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  1. #1
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    MTB Brake handles (mechanical)

    I bought some brakes by AVID and have been using a 4mm OD cable housing.
    The part of the brake handle (I will callit a nipple) where the cable housing goes into
    is allot looser then the OD of the cable housing.

    I dont understand why the ID of this nipple is so much larger than the OD of the cable housing.
    Should I wrap some ducttape aorund the cable housing for a snugger fit inside this nipple or threaded
    barrel whatever you call it?

    Should I use a ferrule at the end of the cable housing, even though it is inside the threaded barrel?

    Thanks for any clarification.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Retro Grouch's Avatar
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    All of the brake housing that I've ever seen had a 5mm OD.

    Take a close look at the cut end of your cable housing. Do you see a lot of wire ends? If so, you have shift housing not brake housing.

    You put a lot more tension on a brake cable than you do shifting. If you use shift housing for brakes, it is very likely to break out at one of the bends.

  3. #3
    Low car diet JiveTurkey's Avatar
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    Typical brake cable housing is 5mm outer diameter, which is the only diameter I've seen it in. (Though I'm not doubting the existence of 4mm housing, just never seen it). I've seen shift cable housing in 4mm and 5mm.

    Don't mean to be insulting, but ensure first that you re using brake housing and not shift housing; there is a difference. Using brake housing for shift cables may affect performance, but using shift housing for brake cables can jeopardize your safety.
    Quote Originally Posted by slopvehicle View Post
    Not wearing a helmet makes me more aware of my surroundings. I find myself anticipating the hardness of concrete 50 or 100 feet in front of me, it's almost a zen-like connection between my face and the pavement.

  4. #4
    Low car diet JiveTurkey's Avatar
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    Also, whatever the housing outer diameter, I believe you still need a ferrule on the end of the housing before it goes into the barrel adjuster of the brake lever. 4mm and 5mm inner-diameter ferrules have the same outer diameter.
    Quote Originally Posted by slopvehicle View Post
    Not wearing a helmet makes me more aware of my surroundings. I find myself anticipating the hardness of concrete 50 or 100 feet in front of me, it's almost a zen-like connection between my face and the pavement.

  5. #5
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    Yes I have brake housing, I MEANT to say 5mm OD. Anyway the brake housing cable is still
    way loose inside the barrel adjuster.
    Is it supposed to be like that?

  6. #6
    I have senior moments... bikinfool's Avatar
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    But are you using a ferrule?
    suum quique
    Mountain bikes: Santa Cruz Hecklers (99, 02, 07), Santa Cruz Nomad, Moots YBB, Trek OCLV Pro Issue, American Breezer
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  7. #7
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    Ferrule = the little silver slip on metal piece that goes onto the end of the housing to help support the cut end.

    Also the "nipple" on the lever is called the barrel adjuster since they are almost all setup with threading to be able to adjust the final lever position when you pull the lever.
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

  8. #8
    Insane Bicycle Mechanic Jeff Wills's Avatar
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    I just looked at the Avid levers on my wife's bike. There's considerable free play between the cable adjuster and the ferrule on the brake cable. It's more free play than the Shimano levers, about the same as the Tektro levers, and less than SRAM levers. (I've got a garage full o' bikes.) 5mm cables on all of them. Not a problem on any of these bikes.

    Yes, you should use a ferrule. It will allow the adjuster to turn more easily.
    Jeff Wills

    All my bikes.

  9. #9
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Some ferrules have so much play, you can use a ferrule within a ferrule to take up the clearance...

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjb_ View Post
    Yes I have brake housing, I MEANT to say 5mm OD. Anyway the brake housing cable is still
    way loose inside the barrel adjuster.
    Is it supposed to be like that?
    Would you rather it be tight and have to pry the housing ferrule out if there is corrosion.

  11. #11
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    thanks
    you guys are right. The freeplay between the barrel adjuster and the ferrule is to facilitate turning the barrel. However, I tend to think it is excessive in the Avid Levers so I will wrap a some electrical tape to make it slightly more snug.

    Thanks for the help.

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