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Thread: cable crimps

  1. #1
    Senior Member IbikezLA's Avatar
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    cable crimps

    I was messing around with my front derailleur today and I accidentally pulled off the cable crimp. Does it matter if I just leave the cable as it is, it may eventually unravel. If it does unravel should I try to rewind the cable and crimp it or just replace the cable so that way I'll have a clean cable again?
    put the fun between your legs

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    It'll unravel and look ugly, plus it'll be harder to ever adjust the cable in the future. You can get another cap for a nickel if not free at a LBS and crimp it on yourself with a pair of pliers. If you really want to avoid that, you can also try soldering the end of the cable together.

    This isn't going to make your bike fall apart spontaneously or anything - if you're feeling lazy, just wait until you have to replace the cable again to fix it. If you wait 'till the unraveling starts you'll never get it all back together to get another cap on and will have to get a new cable to make it pretty.

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    Get some heat shrink tubing from your local hardware store. Works great. bk

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    Great State of Varmint Panthers007's Avatar
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    How do you keep an idiot in suspense?

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    Senior Member IbikezLA's Avatar
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    I would go to the LBS but I'm beginning to feel embarrassed going over there since I've been going a lot.
    put the fun between your legs

  6. #6
    Senior Member CACycling's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IbikezLA View Post
    I would go to the LBS but I'm beginning to feel embarrassed going over there since I've been going a lot.
    As long as you are spending money, I don't think they'll be too upset with you coming in.

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    Senior Member MudPie's Avatar
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    I prefer tinning the end with solder - gives a real clean, streamline look.

  8. #8
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Just be careful that you don't run that solder tooooooo far up/down the cable, or it will become a solid wire.

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    If you still have the crimp that came off, open it up with a pick or nail and re-use it. I've done that many times.

    But a person really should just have a bunch of them lying around. They're so cheap and needed when you least expect it. I bought a bunch last year, but darn if I could find them the other day when a crimp came off when I was adjusting the cable on the rear brake. I pushed a thin nail into it and re-used it.

  10. #10
    DRF aka Thrifty Bill wrk101's Avatar
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    +1 Buy a decent supply of cable crimps. They sell a couple of sizes, brake cables and derailleur cables (smaller). It really makes the job look finished IMHO.
    Last edited by wrk101; 06-15-09 at 07:44 PM. Reason: comment

  11. #11
    Map maker cbchess's Avatar
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    go to you lbs and get a big handful for $1.00 and be set for a year or more

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    Fresh Garbage hairnet's Avatar
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    I never thought about soldering my wires. I tried just a few minutes ago and the wire won't take the solder. :/ now I am too stuck with a wire without a crimp

  13. #13
    Reeks of aged cotton duck Hydrated's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hairnet View Post
    I never thought about soldering my wires. I tried just a few minutes ago and the wire won't take the solder. :/ now I am too stuck with a wire without a crimp
    Paste flux + high heat = tinned cable
    "We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm." George Orwell

  14. #14
    Reeks of aged cotton duck Hydrated's Avatar
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    Since folks are talking about tinning their cable ends instead of crimping them, I figured that I would chime in with my cable tinning tips.

    • Use paste flux to get the solder to properly flow and adhere to the cable. You can buy a 2 ounce jar of flux for about $7... 2 ounces of flux paste will last you for the rest of your life. Try Radio Shack.
    • Use high heat and a soldering iron that is capable of delivering enough heat to the cable. Bicycle cables are larger than what most electronics folks normally solder. Pour the heat to it.
    • Be careful how you finish your cable ends. If you pull your iron straight away form the cable end longitudinally, you will usually leave a very sharp tip on the cable. That tip can slice your palm or leg open like a razor. Use your hot soldering iron to safely blunt that tip.


    I like tinning my cables instead of crimping. No crimped ends to cut off or fiddle with come adjustment time...
    "We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm." George Orwell

  15. #15
    Senior Member cman's Avatar
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    I have used rubber cement on occasion when out of crimp ends.

  16. #16
    Hypoxic Member head_wind's Avatar
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    I've been unable to solder some cables even using acid flux. Now I take some fine (about #22) copper wire (solid, not braided) and wind 3 or 4 turns around the cable and solder that. When you first think you are done check for flesh-hooks!!

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