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Old 12-26-14, 11:44 PM
rm -rf
don't try this at home.
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On my 10-speed Campagnolo shifters, the cable makes a 90 degree turn within the shifter body before it reaches the cable housing. That repeated flexing eventually breaks the cable, strand by strand, until the last few go all at once.

And it can be quite difficult to fish out the frayed stub and crimp, since there's very little of the cable sticking out. I used a bunch of different tools the last time, and it was frustrating. If I was planning a long tour, I'd swap out the rear derailleur cable in advance of the tour.

The symptoms are: 1. sluggish shifts. 2. a few missed shifts and misadjusted cog rubbing noises. 3. very sloppy. 4. snap! (Phase 2 through 4 usually happen within the same ride.)

The older style Shimano shifters with the straight cable housing coming off the side of the shifter might last longer? But they must have a rotating piece to do the shifts, so they would have a similar flexing problem.

Last edited by rm -rf; 12-26-14 at 11:54 PM.
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