Cable housing cutting question

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by slyjackson, Aug 3, 2007.

  1. slyjackson

    slyjackson New Member

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    What do you perfer to cut your cable housing with, a wire cutter for steel wires and cables or tubing cutter? I've been looking at a "Mini Heavy duty" tubing cutter at sears that is used to cut steel brake line.

    If it works It should provide a clean cut without the need to file, bend and clip ends of the cable housing after cutting it. I could be wrong however since I've never tried using one to do this. What do you guys think?
     
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  2. Scotty_Dog

    Scotty_Dog New Member

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    I don't think it will work very well. While I have never used a tubing cutter to cut bicycle cable housing, I have used it to cut actual tubing 1000's of times. For a tubing cutter to work well, the tubing surface needs to be fairly smooth and uniform, unlike the helical metal portion of a bike cable. I would guess a tubing cutter would try to follow the helix instead of making a new cut.

    I'll try it later and tell you if it works.
     
  3. slyjackson

    slyjackson New Member

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    I thought about that too, but since I have used a pipe cutter to cut flexable conduit in the past, I thought that a tube cutter might work with cable housing as well.

    Let me know if it works and if it does I will go and get on today.

    Thanks Scotty !
     
  4. pistole

    pistole New Member

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    - just coming off a DIY build , I used normal wire-cutter pliers on both types of cable-housings (ie , the brake and shift). The results of the cut were poor at best , but can be very nicely sorted with the use of a flat-bladed file.

    cheers.
    .
     
  5. sogood

    sogood New Member

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    Similarly just came off a build. I used a Park Tool cable cutter and the result was less than perfect at the cable housing ends. As was pointed out earlier, the spiral outer winding made it very difficult to achieve a perfectly square cut. I ended up filing the ends down. If a Park Tool cable cutter can't do it, I doubt others can.
     
  6. Scotty_Dog

    Scotty_Dog New Member

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    It didn't work at all. The cutting blade kept following the spiral, instead of cutting.
     
  7. WIGGUM1

    WIGGUM1 New Member

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    Dremel power rotary tools have high rpm, thats what I use, it doesn't need filinig if you use it right.
     
  8. slyjackson

    slyjackson New Member

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    Thanks Scotty, I think I will go and get a dremel. I've always wanted one, now I have a reason to get one. Thanks for all you help !
     
  9. capwater

    capwater New Member

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    Dremel is the only way to go. Plus, an excuse to buy a new tool is always a good one!
     
  10. thomas_cho

    thomas_cho New Member

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    I use a Park cable cutting tool, and file down the edges to trim it. I wouldnt say its a lot of work at all. Whole process takes 2 mins?
     
  11. sogood

    sogood New Member

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    I read somewhere that with a Dremel tool or dental drill, the high temp can melt the plastic bits and clog the housing. Anyone can confirm or deny this?
     
  12. capwater

    capwater New Member

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    Cut it with a Dremel and then use an awl or drill bit to poke it in the hole to clean it up. 30 seconds max per cut.
     
  13. gclark8

    gclark8 New Member

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  14. Slugster438

    Slugster438 New Member

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    As I've seen it, the Dremel with a thinner cut-off wheel is best.

    If you're careful you can just cut through the metal spiral, and then you slice through the inner plastic liner with a knife or other blade.

    I haven't EVER seen a conventional cable-cutter that doesn't mangle the ends of the metal jacket. They never cut the metal off square, it's always crooked and needs more filing to get it squared off.
    ~
     
  15. daveornee

    daveornee New Member

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    I add my vote for Dremel with cut-off wheel. It makes a smooth and precise cut for brake & cable housing as well as cables.
     
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