Things I Like: Jagwire Cables & Housing

Let’s face it, cables and housing generally don’t top the list of sexiest bike parts.  People either buy what’s cheapest, or they opt for the color that best matches their frame, handlebar tape, or sunglasses.  Now, I’ll admit that I’m both thrifty and a fan of color-coordination (in moderation), but what I really like are parts that I can essentially ignore.  That’s especially true when it comes to cables and housing, and that’s why you’ll find Jagwire cables and housing on all of my bikes.

Jagwire is one of the largest producers of cables and housings, and as you can imagine, the company offers products for nearly every type of bicycle control system.  For smooth braking and shifting (and minimal maintenance), I run Jagwire’s Teflon coated inner wires with their compression-free cable housing.

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Jagwire housing on the author’s Salsa Vaya.

New cables and housing always feel great when you first install them, but what about six months later?  Well, approximately nine months ago I built up my Salsa Vaya with Jagwire’s Racer kit, and I can’t detect any noticeable degradation in braking or shifting performance.  Even more impressive are the two year-old Ripcord cables and housings on my full-suspension mountain bike that are still going strong (and are smoother than many new bikes on the showroom floor).  This is definitely a testament to the quality of the materials used, but some of the credit to the system’s longevity is due to the sealed end caps and nosed ferrules.  These fittings–unlike cheaper stamped units–do a superior job of keeping crud and water out, and reducing friction (and wear) at cable stops and guides.

For more information, including installation videos, visit Jagwire’s website.

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