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Old 03-10-11, 08:14 AM   #1
hardyt
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Rusted cable stuck in corroded barrel adjuster stuck in rear derailleur

Anyone have any idea how to get this out? It's a broken rear derailleur cable that corroded inside the broken barrel adjuster that corroded inside the derailleur. The bike is a 76 Schwinn Traveler. The rear derailleur is a Shimano/Schwinn GT-420.

I've tried soaking it in WD-40 and yanking/drilling/heating. Drilling into it is hindered by the steel cable stuck inside.

Thanks,
Tom

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Old 03-10-11, 08:17 AM   #2
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Never seen this before, what about drilling it out with a dremel??
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Old 03-10-11, 08:23 AM   #3
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When you say you soaked it are you saying you actually submersed it or you just sprayed it? I would put something like PB Blaster or Liquid Wrench in a small container and let it sit in that overnight.
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Old 03-10-11, 10:29 AM   #4
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I would put something like PB Blaster or Liquid Wrench in a small container and let it sit in that overnight.
+1
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Old 03-10-11, 10:42 AM   #5
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+100, definitely soak it in something made for freeing rusted hardware. Another besides the two mentioned is Kroil. These are oil/acid blends made specifically to wick in and attack rust.

Then try pulling the remaining wire out from the bottom. If it's broken off flush at both ends, use a Dremel or small file to square it off so you can start a 1/16" drill. Drill from the bottom up and the drill should follow the hole since rust is fairly soft. Or use a 5/32" drill to remove the entire adjuster, then you can re-tap the RD.

That's a lot of work, so let's hope that soaking and carefully turning with pliers does the job.
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Old 03-10-11, 11:40 AM   #6
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When you say you soaked it are you saying you actually submersed it or you just sprayed it? I would put something like PB Blaster or Liquid Wrench in a small container and let it sit in that overnight.
I like Liquid Wrench. Way better than WD-40.
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Old 03-10-11, 12:25 PM   #7
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wd-40

I did not immerse the part in WD-40, just let it soak in repeatedly. I'll get some PB Blaster and let you know if it worked. Thanks!
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Old 03-10-11, 12:40 PM   #8
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Definitely give it a good soak in a penetrating oil. I had this happen once though, and I ended up having to very carefully drill out the cable from the barrel adjuster. I started with small bits and worked up. Eventually the ferrule peeled out of the barrel adjuster
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Old 03-10-11, 12:58 PM   #9
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Definitely give it a good soak in a penetrating oil. I had this happen once though, and I ended up having to very carefully drill out the cable from the barrel adjuster. I started with small bits and worked up. Eventually the ferrule peeled out of the barrel adjuster
From the pictures, this sounds like the way to go. I'd probably even try to use cable cutters to snip the cable closer to the hole and try to get as much of that to a flat surface. Drill it with a nail to get it started, then the smaller to larger drill bits to carefully grind it out. Would also put it in a bench vise to ensure it didn't miss or go anywhere and hold it still in 1 place.
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Old 03-10-11, 01:59 PM   #10
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OMG - this reminds me of the things I saw all the time 25 years ago, when I used to casually work on peoples' bikes for less than minimum wage, because there was no way I could charge them more than the bike was worth. Kroil is your best bet, and 'Sili-Kroil' is even better. You can apply light heat before applying the penetrant which really helps it work. Like they said, cut/file off the excess wire so you can punch/drill it out. It might take a few days, heating/applying penetrant, but I think you can save it.
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Old 03-11-11, 03:48 PM   #11
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rusted cable is out - now how to clear threads?

Short story: Now I have it so I can see the beginnings of threads, but the barrel's threads are still solidly stuck. Any suggestions on how to get the remnents of the barrel threads out? I don't have a 5mm tap on hand and I'm working it with a nail, but with no success...

Long story: After letting the corroded cable/barrel/rd soak, heating it, soaking it overnight, I still could not pull out the cable nor twist the barrel out.

I then filed the cable and barrel down on the flat side as suggested and carefully drilled out the cable. Initially, I couldn't drill straight down the center because the relatively hard steel cable kept making the tiny bit slip into the soft barrel. I tried drilling at a 45 degree angle into the center of the cable, hit a big pocket of rust, and the cable's filed end popped out. I then could drill all the way straight through. I drilled it out to the point where I can see threads appearing.
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Old 03-12-11, 07:47 PM   #12
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It's all good now!

After trying a night in the freezer (didn't work), I bought a tap and die set. The tap made very short work of the barrel adjuster remnants. The rear derailleur is saved!

For anyone else with this problem, drill until you see the beginning of threads and then use a M5-0.8 tap. You don't need to buy the whole tap and die set - just the tap. It was really easy.
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