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Installing brake cable

Old 12-19-20, 03:09 PM
  #1  
maperna
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Installing brake cable

I just received a new folding bike that I bought online. I have to install the brake cable to the caliper on the handles. The problem is - they sent me the cable with the sheath all the way to the top of the cable - right up to the mushroom head. How do I remove the crimp, strip the cable and re-install the / a crimp after getting the head onto the caliper?
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Old 12-19-20, 03:19 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
I just received a new folding bike that I bought online. I have to install the brake cable to the caliper on the handles. The problem is - they sent me the cable with the sheath all the way to the top of the cable - right up to the mushroom head. How do I remove the crimp, strip the cable and re-install the / a crimp after getting the head onto the caliper?
Which end of the cable fits your brake lever?
Cut off the other end and install the cable. Likely you can use your old outer cable if you want. Normally you have to cut it to length anyway.
Get a cable crimp for the brake caliper side. But the brake will function without that.
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Old 12-19-20, 03:35 PM
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Wish I could post a photo but it won't let me since I'm new. The cable is already installed on the brake at the wheel. That leaves just installing the mushroom head onto the caliper, which I can't do due to the sheath that is all the way flush with the mushroom head. So, I'm assuming I need to remove the crimp, remove just enough of the sheath so that I can fit the head into the caliper and through the end of the assembly. I'm assuming I may be able to re-use the crimp if I don't mangle it too badly when I remove it. When I re-install the crimp? does it go right up to the handlebar assembly where the wire feeds through going into the caliper?

What tools do I need to do this?
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Old 12-19-20, 03:47 PM
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The pasrt on the handlebar is the lever not the caliper. Check the run of cable, I suspect that the housing has slipped out of a stop somewhere and that is taking up the slack you need to install it into the lever., so you need to seat it properly in the stop Or, if you have V-brakes you may need to undo the noodle at the brake and that should give you enough slack. https://www.sheldonbrown.com/canti-direct.html
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Old 12-19-20, 03:48 PM
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What on earth are you talking about? Installing the mushroom head at the caliper? Sheath? I have a feeling you have no idea how any of your brake system works. You're gonna need to take part in some threads and then post photos.
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Old 12-19-20, 03:53 PM
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Thanks for your help. I would upload a photo to show what I am talking about but it won't let me since I am new. Sorry for using non-bike-expert technical terms.
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Old 12-19-20, 03:59 PM
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I don't really understand the problem, but maybe if you watch a video on installing brake cables you'll have a better understanding of things:


There are lots of videos online for almost any bike mechanical task.
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Old 12-19-20, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
Thanks for your help. I would upload a photo to show what I am talking about but it won't let me since I am new. Sorry for using non-bike-expert technical terms.
Can you close the brake caliper by hand to give you the skack at the brake lever.
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Old 12-19-20, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
Wish I could post a photo but it won't let me since I'm new. The cable is already installed on the brake at the wheel. That leaves just installing the mushroom head onto the caliper, which I can't do due to the sheath that is all the way flush with the mushroom head. So, I'm assuming I need to remove the crimp, remove just enough of the sheath so that I can fit the head into the caliper and through the end of the assembly. I'm assuming I may be able to re-use the crimp if I don't mangle it too badly when I remove it. When I re-install the crimp? does it go right up to the handlebar assembly where the wire feeds through going into the caliper?

What tools do I need to do this?
That's likely your problem.
You didn't allow for enough cable and pulled it too far through the housing before attaching to the brake LEVER.
Undo it from the brake and install in the lever.
NOW, you can measure where to attach it to the brake.
Caliper is by the wheel. Lever is attached to the bar.
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Old 12-19-20, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
................. I would upload a photo to show what I am talking about but it won't let me since I am new...................
Be devious. Just write the URL of where the photo is posted in the plain text of your message. Remove the https:// and change the '.' to ' dot '. If the spam filters balk still then do some further obfuscation of the URL. The forum police won't come knocking on your door for this. They only worry about actual spammers.

If the site that hosts your pic/pic's has a Share function then use the URL generated by that. There is a gallery here on BF too, but I don't know the policy for newb's putting photos there. But if it lets you, you can use that as a host to get a URL.
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Old 12-19-20, 04:11 PM
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Thank you. I HAVE already watched that video. I can see that it's fairly easy to attach the cable to the handlebar. But, as I am trying to explain, not very well I guess, the company that sent the bike to me already attached the cable to the brake. I just need to attach the other end to the brake lever. They sent it with the cable housing all the way flush with the disc end that goes into the lever. So I am unable to thread the cable into the lever and through the lock and barrel adjuster into the linkage end that holds the disc because it is covered with cable housing all the way to the disc end. There is no slack of the housing that I can pull back to expose the cable at that end. And it is crimped in place right up to the disc end.

Soooo, I need to remove the cable housing and crimp in order to get the cable to fit into the handle lever. Just asking for some advice on how to do that. I know I will need to remove the crimp, remove some cable housing so the cable will fit into the lever and through the barrel adjuster, etc. What tools do I need to buy to do that? And do I put the crimp back in place right in front of the lock in front of the barrel adjuster? Where do I get a new crimp if I ruin the one that's on there right now?
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Old 12-19-20, 04:18 PM
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I've only seen it once, but I have seen a bike that you could install the cable and not have to remove a crimp on the end of the cable. If the manufacturers or vendor that sent it too you put the cable together and crimped it, you might have such a bike.

I wouldn't think they'd waste their time putting the cable in the housing much less crimping it if it couldn't be installed that way. Call the place you got it from. They'll know for certain.
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Old 12-19-20, 04:35 PM
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The manufacturer provided a video showing how to attach the cable to the lever. The video shows the bare cable. I have contacted them telling them that I have been quoted $60 to have a bike repair shop do the work. Either that, or how to return the bike. I'm sure that they will not cover the postage so it will probably cost just as much to return as to have a bike shop do the work. I am awaiting their response. But, in the meantime, I was thinking that maybe I could give it a try. The attaching of the cable to the lever is very easy. Unfortunately, for me, is the fact that I have to remove the cable housing that they erroneously installed to the top of the cable in order to install it.
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Old 12-19-20, 05:36 PM
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IF you manually move & hold the lever on the caliper that the cable is attached to, will it generate enough slack to attach to the Br. lever?
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Old 12-19-20, 05:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Bill Kapaun View Post
IF you manually move & hold the lever on the caliper that the cable is attached to, will it generate enough slack to attach to the Br. lever?
Bill is a smaart guy, I have a feeling this is exactly what the bike seller intended for you to do. Have a friend squeeze the brake calipers together on the wheel end which should push enough cable out of the housing on the handle bar lever end for you to get that little sucker in there and connected. Good luck,
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Old 12-19-20, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
Thank you. I HAVE already watched that video. I can see that it's fairly easy to attach the cable to the handlebar. But, as I am trying to explain, not very well I guess, the company that sent the bike to me already attached the cable to the brake. I just need to attach the other end to the brake lever. They sent it with the cable housing all the way flush with the disc end that goes into the lever. So I am unable to thread the cable into the lever and through the lock and barrel adjuster into the linkage end that holds the disc because it is covered with cable housing all the way to the disc end. There is no slack of the housing that I can pull back to expose the cable at that end. And it is crimped in place right up to the disc end.

Soooo, I need to remove the cable housing and crimp in order to get the cable to fit into the handle lever. Just asking for some advice on how to do that. I know I will need to remove the crimp, remove some cable housing so the cable will fit into the lever and through the barrel adjuster, etc. What tools do I need to buy to do that? And do I put the crimp back in place right in front of the lock in front of the barrel adjuster? Where do I get a new crimp if I ruin the one that's on there right now?
The crimps are installed and removed with pliers. Squeeze it on the side and it loosens and falls off. As long as you dont destroy it, it can be re-installed the same way with pliers. The crimps can be bought in packs from ebay. Search cable crimps.

Alternatively you can use a steel wire/cable cutter hand tool and cut the crimp off. Dont cut off any cable that is needed. Avoid that.

Once the crimp is off you can slide off the outer cable. If you need to shorten the outer cable. a cable cutter hand tool will do it.

Something like this
https://www.ebay.com/itm/8-Steel-Wir...QAAOSwwUJdwMV6

Loosen the cable clamping bolt on the caliper with a hex key, to slide off the outer cable.

The crimp needs to be put on the very end of the cable. It doesn't matter if it's near the clamp or not.

The crimps is only there to prevent the cable strands from unravelling.

Last edited by trailflow1; 12-21-20 at 10:22 PM.
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Old 12-19-20, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
The manufacturer provided a video showing how to attach the cable to the lever. The video shows the bare cable. I have contacted them telling them that I have been quoted $60 to have a bike repair shop do the work. Either that, or how to return the bike. I'm sure that they will not cover the postage so it will probably cost just as much to return as to have a bike shop do the work. I am awaiting their response. But, in the meantime, I was thinking that maybe I could give it a try. The attaching of the cable to the lever is very easy. Unfortunately, for me, is the fact that I have to remove the cable housing that they erroneously installed to the top of the cable in order to install it.
It's really easy. Save yourself $60 and do it yourself. $60 for this job way too much to pay.

If you upload the image to imgur.com. Then copy and post the link on here without the https://www. bit at the front

like this
imgur.com/gallery/72z0IBh

Last edited by trailflow1; 12-19-20 at 07:13 PM.
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Old 12-19-20, 09:35 PM
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Outer cable ...please people, it's called HOUSING.
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Old 12-20-20, 08:03 PM
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I tried replying to you guys last night but this forum’s ridiculously restrictive rules prevented me from doing so. After 5 posts, I had to wait 24 hours to make another post. How are you supposed to have a decent conversation with that rule?

Anyway, thanks, Bill, for instructing me on terminology and the suggestion that worked. There is a lot of extra cable at the wheel, so I loosened the nuts at the wheel. That gave me the opportunity to pull the cable up through the housing up near the lever - enough so that I could install it onto the lever. Such a simple thing that I would never have realized. Thanks so much.
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Old 12-20-20, 08:40 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
I tried replying to you guys last night but this forum’s ridiculously restrictive rules prevented me from doing so. After 5 posts, I had to wait 24 hours to make another post. How are you supposed to have a decent conversation with that rule?

Anyway, thanks, Bill, for instructing me on terminology and the suggestion that worked. There is a lot of extra cable at the wheel, so I loosened the nuts at the wheel. That gave me the opportunity to pull the cable up through the housing up near the lever - enough so that I could install it onto the lever. Such a simple thing that I would never have realized. Thanks so much.
The idea is to prevent spammers. We have been hit by them in the past. Once you become a member of the forum and hit your ten posts, you won't have the restrictions. Just get ready to become an active member of the forum and have fun around her.
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Old 12-21-20, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
There is a lot of extra cable at the wheel, so I loosened the nuts at the wheel. That gave me the opportunity to pull the cable up through the housing up near the lever - enough so that I could install it onto the lever.
That's probably not the way the Park Tool guy would describe this.

But, at this point, if whatever you did solved the issue for whatever the problem was, then I guess that's a win.
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Old 12-22-20, 03:17 PM
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Maybe you can tell me how Park Tool guy would have worded it. So as not to embarrass myself in the future.
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Old 12-23-20, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
Maybe you can tell me how Park Tool guy would have worded it. So as not to embarrass myself in the future.
He would have used the correct terminology in very exacting sentences using the active voice. I have no idea what you did, so I can't interpret it for you.
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Old 12-23-20, 01:05 PM
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Originally Posted by maperna View Post
Maybe you can tell me how Park Tool guy would have worded it. So as not to embarrass myself in the future.
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