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  1. #51
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcb78 View Post
    And i'm sure you've seen the "cost" on just a cable, crazy right? For me to make my margin goals I would have to sell 2 cables for nearly the same price as a complete set.
    Exactly...it's kinda crazy.

    Quote Originally Posted by metoou2 View Post

    So, CXWRENCH what are you going to install on the customer's bike?
    I put standard Shimano cables (no coating) in w/ new housing and it worked perfectly.
    I work for some bike racers
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  2. #52
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    cxwrench, are you seeing this less often with the 9001 shifters compared to the 9000?

  3. #53
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    Very good CX, let us know when if the customer has any more issues.

    Did you do a 'blind taste test' and not mention to the guy which cables you fitted?

  4. #54
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    [QUOTE=rcb78;4791846]
    Quote Originally Posted by metoou2 View Post
    Very good CX, let us know when if the customer has any more issues.

    Did you do a 'blind taste test' and not mention to the guy which cables you fitted?
    I didn't say a thing to him. He came in w/ a bike that didn't work and he left w/ one that works perfectly. He'll be happy.
    I work for some bike racers
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  5. #55
    'brifter' is a lame word.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 5DII View Post
    cxwrench, are you seeing this less often with the 9001 shifters compared to the 9000?
    Far as I can tell it's exactly the same as no changes were actually made w/ the internals of the shifters. Same part #'s. Maybe they changed the cables a bit? They definitely didn't 're-engineer' the shifter. There's only so much room in there and the only thing that matters is the radius of the bend the cable is wrapped around. That's the same.
    I work for some bike racers
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  6. #56
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    That cable-breaking-in-the-shifter thing...

    Quote Originally Posted by ibericb View Post
    Q: Is a coating necessary to prevent the cables from being worn/fraying? If so, the whatever is being used for the coating wasn't up to the task, at least on this cable set.

    As a retired materials guy, I'd be wondering what polymer was used for the coating. It looks like it fails by fibrillating, which makes me suspect it might be an LCP (e.g. Vectra).
    As a materials guy, don't you think the cable (not coating) fraying problem is a materials and not necessarily a shifter problem? Seems to me that one can make a shift cable that has practically infinite fatigue life. Maybe cold working on cables shortens fatigue life.

  7. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Evil View Post
    Has any tried cables with a higher strand count? Alligator make some with 31 strands. These should be substantially more flexible, and thus last longer before fatiguing.
    I just ordered some of these 31 strand cables, so will compare them to the 19 strand Shimano cables on hand. I have the plain stainless steel, 6800 and 9000 here already. The price of these cables is right ($5)
    It's hard to say why there would be a difference between coated and non-coated cable life in the same shifters. Unless the coated cable has a smaller diameter steel cable under the coating, or the steel used is a different grade or finish.
    Maybe the coating causes more stress as it constricts the individual wires movement as it bends?

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfdemicco View Post
    As a materials guy, don't you think the cable (not coating) fraying problem is a materials and not necessarily a shifter problem? Seems to me that one can make a shift cable that has practically infinite fatigue life. Maybe cold working on cables shortens fatigue life.
    When done properly, materials and design go hand in hand. That said, I have seen far too many cases where a new material was substituted into a traditional design. The most common result was unexpected failure with the new material. Then the new material gets a bad rap, when in fact it was the design was ill-suited for the new material.

    Shimano has a long history of exemplary engineering and design. On these shifters, however, somebody screwed up. Most people point to the design change that came going to the 9000 series. In my mind it's a package deal. So in my mind both shifter, the underlying cable and the coating should be questioned. When they were brought together, it didn't work.

    A simple solution for Shimano would be to put everything back like it was. But that simply ignores the problem (opportunity) they've discovered. Hopefully their engineers learn something in sorting out the root cause of the cable/shifter failure. It's a system, and it needs to be approached as such.
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  9. #59
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    If you take a look at the pathways (angles) created by the shift cable routing parts for the 6700 / 7900 series and then do the same with the 9000 / 6800 / 9001 they both have to follow similar paths to arrive at the barrel that the cable wraps around.

    Yes, the entry points are different when comparing the (2) different gen. shifters. But both pathways cause the cable to make a 90deg bend and then wrap around that barrel.

    6700 / 7900 had cable heads popping off very early on. Shimano said it was due to bike assembly companies not using Shimano ferrules and housing. Who knows for sure, but the problem didn't or hasn't plagued that entire generation of shifters.
    This current issue seems to be a persistent problem for many people riding the 9000 / 6800 / 9001.

    ibericib, you said it best when you described the shifter and cable as a system.

    These failures always raise the question as to why these sorts of problems can't be ferreted out during prototype trials. It has been my experience that often the problems occur when the parts reach the stage of actually being produced in mass. Something gets lost during that transition and the production guys fail to meet certain standards that were established by the prototype engineers and testers.
    And the flip side of that is the testers can fail to adequately test out the system.

    Some things that stand out after all the reading I've done;
    There are cyclist who have fitted these poly coated cables to the last generation shifters; 5700 / 6700 / 7900 and they are reporting the same premature cable failures. This seems to point the finger at the poly coated cable.
    Additionally, mechanics/ cyclists are fitting 'normal' stainless Dura Ace cables to 9000 / 6800 / 9001 shifters and reporting longer, more normal cable life.
    The same can be said for mechanics/ cyclists fitting Jagwire cables to these same shifters.

    I have in my possession;
    new 9000 shifters purchased Jan. 2013 from a LBS
    new 6800 shifters purchased Jan. 2015 (these came from RIBBLE) RIBBLE was at zero stock status right up until Dec. 18, 2014. They got in product and I ordered. So it would appear that my 6800's were 'fresh off the boat' from whoever produced them.

    Caly Fretz of Velonews reported that Shimano's statement was that the 6800's and 9001's had ONLY cosmetic changes. And the only 'engineering' change was to the actual poly coated cables being supplied with the shifters.
    I made a call to Shimano Tech and they said the same thing.
    I believe the statement about cosmetics based on observing the shifters I own. And by viewing the EV drawings supplied by Shimano.
    And I believe the statement about the cables based on observing and measuring the cables I own.

    9000 shift / brake housing is identical to the 6800. It is the same SP-41 housing that was used in the last gen. shifters.

    9000 shift cables;
    strand counts are identical to 6800
    couldn't measure the diam. of the cable bundle due to the poly coating
    total diam is .002 inches bigger for the 6800

    And as far as 'appearances' go, the poly coating on the 6800 shift and brake cables is significantly darker than the poly coating as seen on the 9000 shift and brake cables.

    I realize companies will hide certain facts for many reasons. However, it has been (2) years since 9000 was released. In that time Shimano has produced the 6800 , 9001 and the 5800's. That's plenty of time for Shimano to decide what exactly is the source of the failures. And if they felt it was the design of the shift cable routing parts inside the shifters then why would they continue on with a faulty design?
    The design is there for all to see. The Shimano EV drawings show identical shift cable routing parts being used for; 9000 / 6800 / 9001 / 5800. This alone shows that Shimano is sticking to their design.

    The short version; "I think the cable done it".
    Last edited by metoou2; 01-26-2015 at 10:01 PM.

  10. #60
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    After sleeping on this, and going back and looking at a few historical references, my suspicion tends towards changes in cables that came post 7800/6700 as being more of the problem than the shifters, but the shifters helped.

    Up through the 7800 and 6700 shifter Shimano "strongly discouraged" the use of a frame with internal cable routing because they felt it impaired index shifting function due to "high cable resistance". More recently that objection has disappeared. My SWAG is that along the way Shimano went to a stiffer internal cable in the interest of overcoming what they believed to be "high cable resistance" with internal frame routing, but in doing so ended up with cables that reach critical fatigue (strand breakage) with fewer cycles. Cable fatigue would also be exacerbated with more strained bending, as would occur with a smaller radius bending cycle on shifting.

    It's just a SWAG, but my bet is the newer Shimano cables are stiffer and have a lower cyclic fatigue level than the older ones, or tried and true well known alternatives to Shimano.
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  11. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibericb View Post
    It's just a SWAG, but my bet is the newer Shimano cables are stiffer and have a lower cyclic fatigue level than the older ones, or tried and true well known alternatives to Shimano.
    This snapping issue is not new or unique to the most recent generation of shimano shifters ard cables and using alternative brand cables does not remedy it.

  12. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Strongbow View Post
    This snapping issue is not new or unique to the most recent generation of shimano shifters ard cables and using alternative brand cables does not remedy it.
    All cables will eventually fail due to cyclic bending fatigue. The more you bend and cycle them, and the more strain they endure in bending (smaller radius bending), the sooner they will fatigue and break. From everything I've read about the newer designs is that they are failing much sooner than the older ones. As I noted, the newer shifters probably aided, but my guess is cable fatigue limits went down as well. Put the two together and it looks really bad.
    Last edited by ibericb; 01-26-2015 at 06:34 AM.
    "When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments."
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  13. #63
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    That cable-breaking-in-the-shifter thing...

    Hence ... drum roll please ... the solution is wireless control of the front and rear derailleurs.

  14. #64
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    Huh? What's wrong with a wired electronic connection? Cable fatigue???????

  15. #65
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    That cable-breaking-in-the-shifter thing...

    Quote Originally Posted by goodboyr View Post
    Huh? What's wrong with a wired electronic connection? Cable fatigue???????
    Yup.

    Trust the force, Luke.

  16. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by myhui View Post
    Hence ... drum roll please ... the solution is wireless control of the front and rear derailleurs.
    Close, but not exactly. Just do away with the stranded wire shift cables, and go electronic (hard wired or wireless) , which was the good cxwrench's point with this thread. The alternative is replace cables more frequently, or change to something other than Shimano. Choose your poison.
    "When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments."
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  17. #67
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    That cable-breaking-in-the-shifter thing...

    The brifters tend to give brake cables a smooth path. So keeping those mechanical should be just fine.

  18. #68
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    That cable-breaking-in-the-shifter thing...

    I was window shopping the Lynskey web pages and realize that no holes need to be drilled into the frame if I use wireless electronic shifting, and run the rear brake cable externally with full length housing.

    The bottom of the bottom bracket will be fully closed on that frame.

    The battery for the controller can be fastened onto the handlebar.

  19. #69
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    That cable-breaking-in-the-shifter thing...

    Quote Originally Posted by ibericb View Post
    After sleeping on this, and going back and looking at a few historical references, my suspicion tends towards changes in cables that came post 7800/6700 as being more of the problem than the shifters, but the shifters helped.

    Up through the 7800 and 6700 shifter Shimano "strongly discouraged" the use of a frame with internal cable routing because they felt it impaired index shifting function due to "high cable resistance". More recently that objection has disappeared. My SWAG is that along the way Shimano went to a stiffer internal cable in the interest of overcoming what they believed to be "high cable resistance" with internal frame routing, but in doing so ended up with cables that reach critical fatigue (strand breakage) with fewer cycles. Cable fatigue would also be exacerbated with more strained bending, as would occur with a smaller radius bending cycle on shifting.

    It's just a SWAG, but my bet is the newer Shimano cables are stiffer and have a lower cyclic fatigue level than the older ones, or tried and true well known alternatives to Shimano.
    I would think lower friction would be needed instead of more stiffness; hence the coated cables. I'm not sure how you can make a steel cable stiffer unless you increase the diameter because all steels have practically the same modulus of elasticity. Housing can effect the stiffness, but the inner wire, no.

    I think brifters tend to break cables because of the high force the long lever arm of the brake lever puts on the cable button when you try to push past low gear. The small lever of bar end and down tube shifters don't put much force on the cable in comparison.

  20. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by ibericb View Post
    All cables will eventually fail due to cyclic bending fatigue. The more you bend and cycle them, and the more strain they endure in bending (smaller radius bending), the sooner they will fatigue and break. From everything I've read about the newer designs is that they are failing much sooner than the older ones. As I noted, the newer shifters probably aided, but my guess is cable fatigue limits went down as well. Put the two together and it looks really bad.
    Then you're reading the wrong stuff. As someone metoou said earlier: "Caly Fretz of Velonews reported that Shimano's statement was that the 6800's and 9001's had ONLY cosmetic changes. And the only 'engineering' change was to the actual poly coated cables being supplied with the shifters.
    I made a call to Shimano Tech and they said the same thing.
    I believe the statement about cosmetics based on observing the shifters I own. And by viewing the EV drawings supplied by Shimano.
    And I believe the statement about the cables based on observing and measuring the cables I own."

  21. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Strongbow View Post
    Then you're reading the wrong stuff. As someone metoou said earlier: "Caly Fretz of Velonews reported that Shimano's statement was that the 6800's and 9001's had ONLY cosmetic changes. And the only 'engineering' change was to the actual poly coated cables being supplied with the shifters.
    I made a call to Shimano Tech and they said the same thing.
    I believe the statement about cosmetics based on observing the shifters I own. And by viewing the EV drawings supplied by Shimano.
    And I believe the statement about the cables based on observing and measuring the cables I own."
    The newer shifter reference was to 9000/9001 & 6800 vs. 7800 and 6700, respectively, as older. What am I missing?
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  22. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Evil View Post
    Has any tried cables with a higher strand count? Alligator make some with 31 strands. These should be substantially more flexible, and thus last longer before fatiguing.
    This is exactly how they should be being made. In the electrical world, you go from solid wire, where wires are permanently installed and never move, to stranded for use in exposed power cords, all the way to welding wire where you need huge overall gauge but maximum flexibility. Many small wires = max flex + max life.

    The only downside is that you get a smaller cross section of actual steel, so ultimate and yield strength is reduced somewhat. I would think we aren't pushing the envelope on the shifter side, but this might matter for brakes. So I'd think the optimum stranding could differ between shifter cables and brake cables (and FD/RD at that)

  23. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by mfdemicco View Post
    I would think lower friction would be needed instead of more stiffness; hence the coated cables. I'm not sure how you can make a steel cable stiffer unless you increase the diameter because all steels have practically the same modulus of elasticity. Housing can effect the stiffness, but the inner wire, no.

    I think brifters tend to break cables because of the high force the long lever arm of the brake lever puts on the cable button when you try to push past low gear. The small lever of bar end and down tube shifters don't put much force on the cable in comparison.
    You may be right on the stiffness, certainly of the steel strands. But when you look at how the new poly coated cables are depicted in various reports, the new poly coating is shown as wrapped around the helical strands, somewhat like old metal tube coiled metal tube housings, rather than as a smooth polymer coating over the metal. Depending on the polymer used and the possible orientation in the polymer filament that could make the internal cable "stiffer", but probably to a limited degree.

    I don't think it's friction of the whole per se, but in may be that the previous design of the smooth PTFE provided, somehow (possibly depending on how it was applied), a measure of internal lubrication between the outer strands that the new wrapped polymer design doesn't. In that sense it may be internal "friction" or simple stress concentration as the metal strands contact each other in bending, increasing strain locally.
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  24. #74
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    I don't have experience with the 9000/6800 series but lots of experience with 7900/6700. I have found the 7900 shifters and cables (Shimano SP41) are definitely prone to fraying and eventual breakage. I would say 5000-7000 km for me. My winter bike has 6700 shifters and I built it with Yokozuna shift cables/housing. No joke, this bike has 16000 km (10000 miles) of use in a lot of bad weather and I'm still on the original cables, with no fraying at the shifter. Now, 16K km just sounds like lazy maintenance and you would be partly correct in assuming that but I'm also interested just to see how long the cable will last. The other thing is that in general this setup has resulted in a lot less fine-tuning of the shifting in the long run, compared to any of the bikes I've had with 7900 and SP41 cables.

  25. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by metoou2 View Post
    looigi, which model of Jagwire did you buy? Would be great if you could fast forward (6) months and give us a follow up report...
    Jagwire Road Pro. Cables have a hard black coating. I have them on two road bikes with about 2k miles on one bike. Shifting is still very good. The brake housing are also compressionless, like Yokozuna, but wrapped with Kevlar instead of a flat steel band. These noticeably firm up braking.

    I've put on many different sets of cables over the years and they all worked great when new. The differentiator has been how long the keep working well. One thing is for sure, cables start working poorly much sooner with under the bar tape routing than they did when exiting the sides of the shifters.
    ... 'cuz that's how I roll.

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