Ghetto repairs series

…the cheaper you get it the cheaper it is…

A friend of TBC

Any issues or failures that occur on your bike can quite often be resolved with a set of simple tools. It is however quite difficult to replace the specific parts when they go wrong. It costs a lot at times and can be sometimes can be only done by a qualified mechanic/technician. That is why we introduced a ‘ghetto repair’ series at which we will discuss heavily discounted or free alternatives to some of the expensive parts/repairs.

We will start with, in our opinion, most useful yet the simplest advice we were given long time ago; it will save you plenty of time and will make your life much easier. It is a ‘how-to’ on stopping cables from fraying when storing them.

Bicycle gear/brake cables are one of the most used and/or replaced parts on your bike. They make it possible to translate the shifter/lever pull into the brake arm/dérailleur action. The y are made of the number of thin steel wires twisted together; they are strong and robust while remaining flexible. When they are being replaced some of them are in a good enough condition to be stored and reused where needed.

The problem with a used cable is that you most likely have cut the end of it to trim it to required length and secured with a crimp. When the cable gets removed you remove the crimp making the cut end exposed and quite easy to untangle.


There are number of ways to store cables (flat, coiled, etc.) but none of them eradicates the need to protect the end of the cable. The best technique we discovered (so far anyway) is the use of the heat shrink that gets put on the end of the cable and heated up to snugly fit around the wires. The heat shrink will work on any cable, greasy or not, and will stay there forever.


When the cable is needed you can simply snip the end of it or slide the heat shrink off the end and you are ready to go…

Have you got any ghetto repairs on your bike or in your workshop that save time, money, stress or all combined?