Internal cable routing techniques

StillGoing
StillGoing Posts: 5,211
edited June 2012 in Workshop
I'm fitting new cables to my Basso one of which is internal in the top tube. There appears to be no inner sleeve so it's hit and miss getting the cable to exit through the hole. At the minute all it wants to do is try and find it's way along the top tube nowhere near the exit hole. Having spent a couple of hours at it yesterday I finally gave up hoping someone will have some tips on the elusive art of routing internal cables with no guide sleeve? You tube doesn't appear to offer anything.
I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.

Comments

  • giant_man
    giant_man Posts: 6,878
    have you tried a lengthened coat hanger yet? or pipe cleaner?
  • Bozman
    Bozman Posts: 2,518
    Are you sure that it has no guide sleeve? I just struggled on a couple of the internal runs but after a bit of patience it was done.
    I can't see how you'll get it through without one and surely you'd get rattle from the cable.
  • Best method I've used is a push a length of cotton in the hole you want the cable to come out of. Make sure you have some glue on the end of your cable Swirl it around inside and pick up the cotton. Pull cotton and cable back out the hole.

    Works almost every time

    Those with a Klein in their past know your pain
    Racing is life - everything else is just waiting
  • eccles
    eccles Posts: 96
    I use an old but uncut gear cable with a 45 degree bend about an inch before the end. When you push this through the tube, line the kink up with the exit hole and it usually pops straight out. Once the end of the cable is out, I slot the outer I want to use on the end and use the gear cable as a guide for pushing the outer through. Once the outer is through both holes I remove the gear cable and insert the inner cable I actually want to use. job done :)
    This works every time, even on custom drilled handlebars where the cable has to go through a 90 degree bend.
    Just make sure to use an uncut cable initially so that it won't fray.
  • StillGoing
    StillGoing Posts: 5,211
    Finally managed it. There was no sleeve so it's hit and miss whether you hit the exit or not if you don't use some other assistance as the entry hole is the exact diameter of the cable inner. In the end I cut the end off a funnel and taped it to the vacuum cleaner holding at the exit point of the frame. This concentrated the suction enough to suck a length of strong cotton through. I then tied one end to the cable inner and carefully managed to pull the cable inner through.

    Strong cotton, the end off a funnel and a Henry vacuum are my new best friends in the workshop!

    Thanks for the suggestions though.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • smidsy
    smidsy Posts: 5,273
    Why, Oh Why does the manufacturer not have a better solution to this in 2012???
    Yellow is the new Black.
  • Bozman
    Bozman Posts: 2,518
    smidsy wrote:
    Why, Oh Why does the manufacturer not have a better solution to this in 2012???

    They do, a fine plastic tube linking end to end.
    I wrongly assumed that all frames that have internal cable routing had them, just shows you what i know.
  • rhnb
    rhnb Posts: 324
    Just a thought (and I might look stupid here)...
    Would a magnet work, once you've got the cable somewhere near the exit hole?
    ~~~
    http://www.bikeit.eclipse.co.uk
    Cycle tour reports and the home of \'Cycling Before Lycra\'
  • StillGoing
    StillGoing Posts: 5,211
    Alas the cables aren't magnetic.

    It is a design flaw, but seeing as it is an Italian frame, they probably just didn't like the idea of some hideous plastic tubing being hidden inside the frame despite its obvious practicalities.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • BruceG
    BruceG Posts: 347
    Just think about it when you change them, pull out the old outer leaving the old inner in place, use the old inner as a guide for the new outer, when the new outer is in place pull out the old inner and substitue if for the new one. Never remove both, always leave at least one in situ.
  • StillGoing
    StillGoing Posts: 5,211
    Don't worry lesson learned the hard way. Although, even with the old inner in place I'd have to join it with the new one somehow as there is no guide channel at all and the entry is the same diameter as the cable inner. Cotton tied to the ends of both seems the only practical solution. The Italians design some beautiful stuff but boy, do they make it difficult to live with.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    "Strong cotton, the end off a funnel and a Henry vacuum are my new best friends in the workshop!"

    Sounds like you're trying to get on to the Sex Offenders register....
  • Wheelspinner
    Wheelspinner Posts: 6,611
    philthy3 wrote:
    Don't worry lesson learned the hard way. Although, even with the old inner in place I'd have to join it with the new one somehow as there is no guide channel at all and the entry is the same diameter as the cable inner. Cotton tied to the ends of both seems the only practical solution. The Italians design some beautiful stuff but boy, do they make it difficult to live with.

    :?: Really? I've yet to see any frame with an internal cable routing hole that will only fit the inner cable. Seems like a lousy design altogether if there's no ferrule protecting both the frame hole & the cable - all that movement will have your cable acting like a hacksaw blade! There really has to be some sort of liner inside the frame too else your cable will twang away inside the tubes worse than a Garth Brooks CD....

    Also, not all cables are non-magnetic. I've got a cheap one which is sufficiently magnetic to work for this very application - I've used it several times to thread through where the outer has been removed as well as the inner, easy and quick.
    Open One+ BMC TE29 Seven 622SL On One Scandal Cervelo RS
  • StillGoing
    StillGoing Posts: 5,211
    Inside the recess for the ferrule is a blank with a hole the diameter of the cable inner. At the exit point there is a similar recess for the ferrule. The cables I use are not magnetic hence why I said alas the cables aren't magnetic. It is a lousy design only from the perspective that there is no inner sleeve to assist feeding new cables through and such a design flaw isn't just evident in Basso and I agree with the poster who asked why this was still going on in 2012 albeit my frame is 2010. The cable is not going to hacksaw through the carbon as there are ferrules in place. So perhaps I didn't make it clear but hopefully this explains it.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • Wheelspinner
    Wheelspinner Posts: 6,611
    philthy3 wrote:
    Inside the recess for the ferrule is a blank with a hole the diameter of the cable inner. At the exit point there is a similar recess for the ferrule. The cables I use are not magnetic hence why I said alas the cables aren't magnetic. It is a lousy design only from the perspective that there is no inner sleeve to assist feeding new cables through and such a design flaw isn't just evident in Basso and I agree with the poster who asked why this was still going on in 2012 albeit my frame is 2010. The cable is not going to hacksaw through the carbon as there are ferrules in place. So perhaps I didn't make it clear but hopefully this explains it.

    Ah ok, my bad! Got it.

    Have to agree - how the hell are you supposed to replace the gear inners in this case without a sheath in the frame already?

    Just curious... have you removed the cranks and BB sleeve (if any) to see if there's a pile of jumbled inner cable sleeve crumpled up in the shell?? :D
    Open One+ BMC TE29 Seven 622SL On One Scandal Cervelo RS
  • StillGoing
    StillGoing Posts: 5,211
    Fortunately the only internal cable was the rear brake running inside the top tube, all others are externally routed on the 2010 Astra. That one was enough for me though without any sleeve in place. The blank plate also prevents me from retrospectively fitting a sleeve.
    I ride a bike. Doesn't make me green or a tree hugger. I drive a car too.
  • keef66
    keef66 Posts: 13,123
    That's another thing to add to my list of 'technological advances' to avoid on my next bike...