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  1. #1
    Senior Member 2wheelchef's Avatar
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    Parallel or Cris-Cross

    When cleaning my bike I noticed that the DR cables cross over each other rather than running parallel the length of the bike. Is this correct?

  2. #2
    Senior Member Steev's Avatar
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    Some people do it this way as it gives a wider, smoother curve to the housings from the bars to the downtube stops.

  3. #3
    headtube. zzyzx_xyzzy's Avatar
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    Some people like crossed because the cables don't bend as sharply coming off the shifters. On the other hand some frames have the cable stops placed so that crossed cables rub the downtube. If that doesn't happen you can run them either way.

  4. #4
    Senior Member 2wheelchef's Avatar
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    Could this cause slow response in the rear DR? I had the FD re cabled because the cable was sticking in the housing. Since then I've been having problems with the "chain skipping" in the RD, or more like it's slow to respond, shift then a few tics later the chain moves. Could the crossed FD cable pinch or hold the RD cable and cause the shifting to be unresponsive? BTW I had originally thought I had a pinched link from the breaking and replacing two links in the chain recently but I couldn't find one. Thought maybe it was holding up the shifting as the frozen part of the chain traveled though the rollers (the slow shifting does not happen often, and mostly in the small front/large rear combos)

  5. #5
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    If you run the shifter cable housings to the downtube stops on the "wrong" side of the bike (i.e. the left brifter housing to the right side downtube stop) the housing doesn't rub the headtube on a tight turn so it doesn't abrade the paint. To get the shifting to the correct derailleur, the cables have to be crossed under the downtube.

  6. #6
    Senior Member 2wheelchef's Avatar
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    This I understand, I'm not so sure that before I took the bike in to be re-cabled that Specialized had this configuration as stock. My question is "can this be the cause of shifting problems or is it just personal preference"?

  7. #7
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    More likely dirt in the shifter cable housings , or frayed inner cable. Also look for dirt under the bottom bracket.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2wheelchef View Post
    .....My question is "can this be the cause of shifting problems or is it just personal preference"?
    Answer: Yes.

    Actually it is personal preference since some riders want to avoid the headtube paint damage which can occur if the housing stops are located fairly low on the downtube where downtube shifters bosses are installed. If the cable stops are on the head tube or high on the downtube, as with many newer frames, paint abrasion by the housing is a non-issue.

    Depending on the frame and cable stop locations, it either has no effect on the shifting or can have a deliterious effect.

    And no, I don't think Specialized set the bike up that way initially.

  9. #9
    Senior Member JustChuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
    And no, I don't think Specialized set the bike up that way initially.
    Some Specialized(and some other manufacturers bikes) come out of the box with crossed cables.

  10. #10
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    The crossing angles are so minor that there's no chance of this being the cause of any drag. You'll want to check the rest of the systems.

    I've crossed my own cables on many bikes for years now without any issues related to the crossing at all.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCRider View Post
    The crossing angles are so minor that there's no chance of this being the cause of any drag. You'll want to check the rest of the systems.

    I've crossed my own cables on many bikes for years now without any issues related to the crossing at all.
    I can see it being a problem or even impossible to do if the housing stops are high on the downtube or, particularly, if they are on the headtube.

    Interesting that Specialized did deliver new bikes set up this way.

  12. #12
    surly old man jgedwa's Avatar
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    I don't think the crossing would contribute to the problem. If anything, it would marginally make it better if the bends coming off the bars are smoother because of it. Otherwise, no effect.

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  13. #13
    What is this demonry?! Szczuldo's Avatar
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    your problem is just a badly tuned rear derailleur. You have the barrel adjusters on the downtube and at the derailleur for a reason. First set the top and bottom limits of the derailleur, then go to your smallest gear. From there make sure the cable is tensioned but not so much that it pulls the derailleur away from the limit screw. Shift up by one, if it doesn't shift, tighten the cable by means of the barrel adjuster on the derailleur and keep adjusting it until it shifts, then go through the rest of your gears by one making sure they shift, if they do not then tighten. Then shift back down to your smallest gear but this time if it doesn't shift you need to loosen the tension. Do this back and forth a couple of times until everything is good.

  14. #14
    Senior Member JustChuck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
    Interesting that Specialized did deliver new bikes set up this way.
    I noticed it when one of the guys built two Tri-Cross on the same day. They were the same model in different sizes, one was crossed and one was not. He had not been assembling long and asked about. So we took a look at the assembled bikes on the floor and they went back and forth between the two styles, but none of them had interference problems(Tho that does happen)

  15. #15
    Senior Member stripes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HillRider View Post
    If you run the shifter cable housings to the downtube stops on the "wrong" side of the bike (i.e. the left brifter housing to the right side downtube stop) the housing doesn't rub the headtube on a tight turn so it doesn't abrade the paint. To get the shifting to the correct derailleur, the cables have to be crossed under the downtube.
    This is correct. When I built up my bike, I crossed the cables for this reason.

    I have also been told that shops do it as one of those "attention to detail" things, like lining up tire labels with the valve stems. It shows that the bike was assembled by somebody who knows what they're doing. This may just be a rumor, I haven't looked into it, but I have heard it from a couple different people.

  16. #16
    Senior Member 2wheelchef's Avatar
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    I'm sure, mostly that Specialized did not set up this bike or any other that (sorry my computer sent this before I finished, will try again)

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by stripes View Post
    I have also been told that shops do it as one of those "attention to detail" things, like lining up tire labels with the valve stems.
    There is a practical reason to line the tire label up with the valve stem. In the event of a flat, when you find the hole in the tube it gives you a reference point to find the object that caused it in the tire.

  18. #18
    Senior Member 2wheelchef's Avatar
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    So I'll try to post again:
    I'm fairly sure that Specialized did not set up this bike nor any other sent compleat from the distributor with crossed cabels. I have 3, my Roubaix, a Rock Hopper and another that all have the same cable guide at the bottom bracket that apears to be set to recive "parrallel" cables. And the 2 MTB bikes and I belive the Road bike did not come with crossed cabels as spec. I'm fair to compitant at ajusting my RD (top and bottom) this being why I was so flumixed when I noticed the crossed cabels. So I guess I'll check out the whole set up, problem is if I re-configure the cabels I'll never know if it was the cris-cross or dirt or stuck housing or barrel ajustment because I'll be doing all that and more when I put it all back where I thought it was before I took the bike to the LBS. Guess there isn't any easy way to know what to do?

  19. #19
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    you can cross the cables on DT cable stops easily if you take your fork off... don't even have to cut the cable caps. just loosen the cables, pop the fork off and swing the cables over.
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