Full-length internal cable housing, critical lessons learned

I learned several critical things during this bike build, that are worth sharing, even if only to keep them in my mind for the next one.

There’s a definite order to routing internal brake cable housing, it’s cable, housing, cable in order to get it right:

  1. Cut the head off of an old brake cable, and thread this through the plastic guide tube provided in your frame. Don’t put it through the brake levers, just through the frame. You use the cable as the guide for the housing.
  2. Remove the plastic guide tube from the old brake cable. Now you should have only the brake cable routed through the frame.
  3. Use the brake cable as a guide to route the brake cable housing through the frame. Be certain to have plenty of housing for this, this will need to go all the way from your caliper, through the frame, to your brake lever, and it will need enough extra for movement of the handlebars.
  4. Remove the old brake cable, cut the housing to fit, and route the new brake cable through the lever, the housing, and into the caliper. If this is a road lever, splice an inline cable tensioner into the housing so you can adjust your brakes.

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