Soldering motorcycle control cables

I am after advice for soldering new "end" on shorten motorcycles cables. I have made my own ends using 6061T6 which is readily available from the
hobby shop and used both Rosin core solder 60%tin and 40% lead and 60% silver with 40% lead. The soldering seems very strong. I could not pull the "end" of the new cables.
I would like some advice of what others may have done insofar as joining "end" to typically motorcycle cables.
Thanks in advance. Tom
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I have done much the same as you. Make sure that cable is well degreased first. Also, the solder should not penetrate up the cable otherwise it looses it's flexibility and can break prematurely. Always apply the solder to the opposite side of the end fitting to the cable.
John

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I had to do that a couple of months ago. I took a 8mm lead bullet (.30 will do), shortened it to length and drilled a cross hole for the cable. Then I cut a slot across one side, and split the cable lating 1/2 into each side and epoxied it in place. Splitting the cable gave it strength even before epoxy, I faired the hole to give not too sharp a bend. Been working great.
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the
Make sure you splay out the end of the cable before soldering, making it less likely for the end to pull out.
Leon
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cables.
joining
Firstly you need brass not aluminum for cable ends.
Firstly place cable end over cable, then clean and tin last quarter inch of cable. Then put your soldering iron on the cable end, and get it hot enough to allow it to slide over the tinning at the end of your cable.
Make sure the end of the cable is flush with outside surface of cable end, then grip cable end in vice, and splay over end of cable with something like a centre punch, and after that get it all nice and hot with your soldering iron, add more solder, clean up excess solder and job done.
Incidentally proper cable ends, always have a bit of a countersink to allow splaying out end of cable.
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Do NOT run those cables on your vehicle. The solder with that flux has *not* wet to the cable ends, and will pull through.
Jim
================================================= please reply to: JRR(zero) at yktvmv (dot) vnet (dot) ibm (dot) com =================================================
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Hey Tom,
I've never done one for a motorcycle, but the "best" way to provide a high strength fastening is to make a cone-shaped hole in the material which suits the intended use, with the minor end hole just large enough for the cable to be pushed through from that end, splay the free cable into individual strands, then "double-over" each end of the strands of wire into a rosette with the free ends "in". Be careful not to let the cable "unwrap" too far when splaying, so it stays "whole" for the next step. Then pull hard on the cable to try to pull the now doubled thickness back through the small hole. While it is held in that position, apply (squish) any good metallized epoxy like JB weld, into the rosette, and hold in place until set. Provides a 98% full strength fastener. You could use solder or babbitt, but if they "creep" along the wire lays, it makes that area of the cable just outside the fastener very stiff and prone to fracture.
Any interest, write back and I'll be more descriptive.
Take care.
Brian Lawson, Bothwell, Ontario. XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
wrote:

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I used to carry a couple of spare ends in the tool kit of my dirt bike. I made these out of steel, and used a set screw to hold them on. I did that after once having to tie a knot in the cable to get me back to the truck A failed throttle or brake cable miles out on the trails can be a bummer.
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Lichtman says...

Another approach to this is to change the cables well before they get old, and put in brand new stuff. Then take the used cables and zip tie them either to the frame in an out of the way spot (mine go under the seat) or dirctly alongside the new ones. That way a failed cable can be set right in minutes on the road.
Jim
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wrote:

shusss..you will give away all the Beemer tricks. <G>
Gunner, with two clutch cables zip tied to his frame.
That rifle hanging on the wall of the working-class flat or labourer's cottage is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there.         - George Orwell
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I made my own ends out of brass stock and a machine screw to clamp it. Karl

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TR wrote:

    Here's one method.... <
http://www.eurospares.com/graphics/cable8.jpg
-- __ Pete Snell Royal Military College Kingston Ontario snipped-for-privacy@rmc.ca
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wrote:

http://www.dansmc.com/cable_ends1.jpg For heavy clutch cables.... check out the contents of this tray - bottom row, second and third from left, and top row, far right. Cable is soldered into ferrule, ferrule fits into recess in cable end.
Wayne
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This is a multi-part message in MIME format. --------------070203040601030005080308 Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii; format=flowed Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
I can finally add some useful comments to the group.
My parents owned a European motorcycle shop in Mesa, AZ. We made our own cables as needed as most motorcycles we worked were not easy to find spare parts that fit correctly.
I have built hundreds of cables from scratch and repaired even more. No known failures. (I'm sure I would have heard about them if they had. No brakes or clutch or throttle tends to bring them' right back.)
Tips.
Use a solder pot, not a soldering iron. Irons do not supply enough heat to properly "wet" solder the brass ferrules.
Pot must be on for at least 30 minutes to be up to temperature. Any less and the solder will not flow correctly. Soldered ends should shine like mercury when hot and be smooth not lumpy.
Only dip 1/8 of an inch of the end into the pot. Let the solder wick to just above the ferrule and no more. (Otherwise makes the cable stiff where it should be flexible and it will break there.)
Don't use acid flux, it will eat and break the cable. I never used any flux and let the solder and the heat do the work on the clean new cable stock.
Put a dab of grease on the barrels that fit in the hole in the levers. If they can't rotate when squeezed they will break right at the barrel.
Don't reuse old cable! It just finds another place to break where it has been weakened before.
Use the largest cable that would move smoothly in the outers.
Don't use set screw ends. They only fall off with vibration and time. (Usually at the worst time. One customer made up his own carb cable this way and it fell off and was ingested in the motor. A piston replacement valve replacement and valve seat replacement later and I still had to make a soldered cable for him. We hated to see this at the shop, we knew it would have only cost him $15 for a cable made by us and it cost him over $600 to fix the damage he caused himself. MOST large jobs we worked on were due to "fingeritis" or the customers putting their fingers on stuff on which they had no business working on. )
Don't use epoxy ever! When it gets warm it softens. (Clutch cables or any other engine cables get hot to the touch.) There is NO WAY a epoxy joint is a strong as a well done solder joint.
Use hard solder (more tin than lead. Available from Flanders Motorcycle supply) Again we saw people that used normal "soft" solder and it pulled the ends right off. A good supply of "hard" solder was old printing type. (Tough to find now.)
To test cables (especially brake cables!) we would install and use BOTH hands to squeeze the lever as hard as we could. In a panic stop you would be surprised how strong people are.
Nothing was as satisfying as assuring a customer that you could get whatever they had left as a cable working again. We had a customer "limp" into the shop at 5:45pm (we closed at 6:00) with a broken throttle cable on a Moto Guzzi (you really build muscle with the heavy springed Dellorto twin carbs) and we made two new inner cables and had him out the door by 6:00. Didn't even remove the cable outers from the bike, just put the solder pot on a extension cord and brought it to the cable ends on the bike.
Here's the link to all the parts you need to make ANY cable. Flanders was the only place we could find these parts.
Flanders Cable page <javascript:void(_search=open('http://www.topfivesearch.com/search.asp?cf=1&aff_idG897&uu `2327815717&mt=flanders%2Bmotorcycle','_search','toolbar=1,menubar=1,location=1,status=1,scrollbars=1,resizable=1'));_search.blur()>
Alas, my parents sold the shop about 7 years ago and no one else in town has taken up the task.
Bart D. Hull snipped-for-privacy@inficad.com Tempe, Arizona
Check http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/engine.html for my Subaru Engine Conversion Check http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/fuselage.html for Tango II I'm building.
Remove -nospam to reply via email.
wmbjk wrote:

--------------070203040601030005080308 Content-Type: text/html; charset=us-ascii Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
<!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN"> <html> <head> <meta content="text/html;charset=ISO-8859-1" http-equiv="Content-Type"> <title></title> </head> <body bgcolor="#ffffff" text="#000000"> <tt>I can finally add some useful comments to the group.<br> <br> My parents owned a European motorcycle shop in Mesa, AZ. We<br> made our own cables as needed as most motorcycles we worked <br> were not easy to find spare parts that fit correctly.<br> <br> I have built hundreds of cables from scratch and repaired even <br> more. No known failures. (I'm sure I would have heard about them<br> if they had. No brakes or clutch or throttle tends to bring them'<br> right back.)<br> <br> Tips.<br> <br> Use a solder pot, not a soldering iron. Irons do not supply <br> enough heat to properly "wet" solder the brass ferrules.<br> <br> Pot must be on for at least 30 minutes to be up to temperature.<br> Any less and the solder will not flow correctly. Soldered ends <br> should shine like mercury when hot and be smooth not lumpy.<br> <br> Only dip 1/8 of an inch of the end into the pot. Let the solder<br> wick to just above the ferrule and no more. (Otherwise makes<br> the cable stiff where it should be flexible and it will break<br> there.)<br> <br> Don't use acid flux, it will eat and break the cable. I never used<br> any flux and let the solder and the heat do the work on the clean <br> new cable stock. <br> <br> Put a dab of grease on the barrels that fit in the hole in the <br> levers. If they can't rotate when squeezed they will break right<br> at the barrel.<br> <br> Don't reuse old cable! It just finds another place to break where it has<br> been weakened before.<br> <br> Use the largest cable that would move smoothly in the outers. <br> <br> Don't use set screw ends. They only fall off with vibration and time.<br> (Usually at the worst time. One customer made up his own carb cable this<br> way and it fell off and was ingested in the motor. A piston replacement<br> valve replacement and valve seat replacement later and I still had to make<br> a soldered cable for him. We hated to see this at the shop, we knew it would<br> have only cost him $15 for a cable made by us and it cost him over $600 to fix<br> the damage he caused himself. MOST large jobs we worked on were due to "fingeritis"<br> or the customers putting their fingers on stuff on which they had no business<br> working on. )<br> <br> Don't use epoxy ever! When it gets warm it softens. (Clutch cables or any<br> other engine cables get hot to the touch.) There is NO WAY a epoxy<br> joint is a strong as a well done solder joint.<br> <br> Use hard solder (more tin than lead. Available from Flanders Motorcycle supply)<br> Again we saw people that used normal "soft" solder and it pulled the ends right off.<br> A good supply of "hard" solder was old printing type. (Tough to find now.)<br> <br> To test cables (especially brake cables!) we would install and use BOTH<br> hands to squeeze the lever as hard as we could. In a panic stop you would be surprised<br> how strong people are.<br> <br> Nothing was as satisfying as assuring a customer that you could get whatever they<br> had left as a cable working again. We had a customer "limp" into the shop at 5:45pm<br> (we closed at 6:00) with a broken throttle cable on a Moto Guzzi (you really build <br> muscle with the heavy springed Dellorto twin carbs) and we made two new inner cables<br> and had him out the door by 6:00. Didn't even remove the cable outers from the bike, <br> just put the solder pot on a extension cord and brought it to the cable ends on the bike.<br> <br> Here's the link to all the parts you need to make ANY cable. Flanders was the only place we<br> could find these parts.<br> <br> <a href="javascript:void(_search=open('http://www.topfivesearch.com/search.asp?cf=1&aff_idG897&uu `2327815717&mt=flanders%2Bmotorcycle','_search','toolbar=1,menubar=1,location=1,status=1,scrollbars=1,resizable=1'));_search.blur()">Flanders Cable page</a><br> <br> Alas, my parents sold the shop about 7 years ago and no one else in town has taken up <br> the task.<br> <br> </tt> <pre class="moz-signature" cols="80">Bart D. Hull <a class="moz-txt-link-abbreviated" href="mailto: snipped-for-privacy@inficad.com"> snipped-for-privacy@inficad.com</a> Tempe, Arizona
Check <a class="moz-txt-link-freetext" href="http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/engine.html ">http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/engine.html </a> for my Subaru Engine Conversion Check <a class="moz-txt-link-freetext" href="http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/fuselage.html ">http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/fuselage.html </a> for Tango II I'm building.
Remove -nospam to reply via email.</pre> wmbjk wrote: <blockquote cite=" snipped-for-privacy@4ax.com" type="cite"> <pre wrap="">On Mon, 10 May 2004 20:45:56 +1000, "TR" &lt;<a class="moz-txt-link-abbreviated" href="mailto: snipped-for-privacy@optushome.com.au"> snipped-for-privacy@optushome.com.au</a>&gt; wrote:
</pre> <blockquote type="cite"> <pre wrap="">I am after advice for soldering new "end" on shorten motorcycles cables. I have made my own ends using 6061T6 which is readily available from the hobby shop and used both Rosin core solder 60%tin and 40% lead and 60% silver with 40% lead. The soldering seems very strong. I could not pull the "end" of the new cables.
I would like some advice of what others may have done insofar as joining "end" to typically motorcycle cables.
Thanks in advance. Tom </pre> </blockquote> <pre wrap=""><!---->
<a class="moz-txt-link-freetext" href="
http://www.dansmc.com/cable_ends1.jpg ">
http://www.dansmc.com/cable_ends1.jpg </a> For heavy clutch cables.... check out the contents of this tray - bottom row, second and third from left, and top row, far right. Cable is soldered into ferrule, ferrule fits into recess in cable end.
Wayne </pre> </blockquote> </body> </html>
--------------070203040601030005080308--
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Hi Bart,
The link to Flanders does not work.
---------------------------------- http://www.wallenderengineering.com
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http://www.flandersco.com/FlanCableSearch.html
Try this link, don't know why it didn't come across right the first time.
Bart D. Hull snipped-for-privacy@inficad.com Tempe, Arizona
Check http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/engine.html for my Subaru Engine Conversion Check http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/fuselage.html for Tango II I'm building.
Remove -nospam to reply via email.
Gears wrote:

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I can finally add some useful comments to the group.
My parents owned a European motorcycle shop in Mesa, AZ. We made our own cables as needed as most motorcycles we worked were not easy to find spare parts that fit correctly.
I have built hundreds of cables from scratch and repaired even more. No known failures. (I'm sure I would have heard about them if they had. No brakes or clutch or throttle tends to bring them' right back.)
Tips.
Use a solder pot, not a soldering iron. Irons do not supply enough heat to properly "wet" solder the brass ferrules.
Pot must be on for at least 30 minutes to be up to temperature. Any less and the solder will not flow correctly. Soldered ends should shine like mercury when hot and be smooth not lumpy.
Only dip 1/8 of an inch of the end into the pot. Let the solder wick to just above the ferrule and no more. (Otherwise makes the cable stiff where it should be flexible and it will break there.)
Don't use acid flux, it will eat and break the cable. I never used any flux and let the solder and the heat do the work on the clean new cable stock.
Put a dab of grease on the barrels that fit in the hole in the levers. If they can't rotate when squeezed they will break right at the barrel.
Don't reuse old cable! It just finds another place to break where it has been weakened before.
Use the largest cable that would move smoothly in the outers.
Don't use set screw ends. They only fall off with vibration and time. (Usually at the worst time. One customer made up his own carb cable this way and it fell off and was ingested in the motor. A piston replacement valve replacement and valve seat replacement later and I still had to make a soldered cable for him. We hated to see this at the shop, we knew it would have only cost him $15 for a cable made by us and it cost him over $600 to fix the damage he caused himself. MOST large jobs we worked on were due to "fingeritis" or the customers putting their fingers on stuff on which they had no business working on. )
Don't use epoxy ever! When it gets warm it softens. (Clutch cables or any other engine cables get hot to the touch.) There is NO WAY a epoxy joint is a strong as a well done solder joint.
Use hard solder (more tin than lead. Available from Flanders Motorcycle supply) Again we saw people that used normal "soft" solder and it pulled the ends right off. A good supply of "hard" solder was old printing type. (Tough to find now.)
To test cables (especially brake cables!) we would install and use BOTH hands to squeeze the lever as hard as we could. In a panic stop you would be surprised how strong people are.
Nothing was as satisfying as assuring a customer that you could get whatever they had left as a cable working again. We had a customer "limp" into the shop at 5:45pm (we closed at 6:00) with a broken throttle cable on a Moto Guzzi (you really build muscle with the heavy springed Dellorto twin carbs) and we made two new inner cables and had him out the door by 6:00. Didn't even remove the cable outers from the bike, just put the solder pot on a extension cord and brought it to the cable ends on the bike.
Here's the link to all the parts you need to make ANY cable. Flanders was the only place we could find these parts.
Flanders Cable page <javascript:void(_search=open('http://www.topfivesearch.com/search.asp?cf=1&aff_idG897&uu `2327815717&mt=flanders%2Bmotorcycle','_search','toolbar=1,menubar=1,location=1,status=1,scrollbars=1,resizable=1'));_search.blur()>
Alas, my parents sold the shop about 7 years ago and no one else in town has taken up the task.
Bart D. Hull snipped-for-privacy@inficad.com Tempe, Arizona
Check http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/engine.html for my Subaru Engine Conversion Check http://www.inficad.com/~bdhull/fuselage.html for Tango II I'm building.
Remove -nospam to reply via email.
wmbjk wrote:

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I've made molds for making the ends of the cables (and fishing lures also). If you are only making a few, it can be done with plaster of paris mixed with water and some white glue. If you want it to be more durable, use bondo. I used those hinged plastic do-dad containers to hold the material. Mix up whatever you are going to use and fill it on one side of the container. Then put some vaseline on an end of the cable you are trying to duplicate. Push the flat side of the cable end in the center of the mold, about half the way down. Leave it there and let the material dry. Then file a little bit of the plastic away from the plastic on the opposite side, until you can close the box with the cable sticking out. Then put some vaseline over the surface that has the cable halfway inserted. Fill the other half of the plastic container and then close the box. Let it dry. Then open the box and remove the cable. On the opposite side of where the cable goes in make a 'hole' from the outside of the box all the way down to impression for the cable end. Then make a funnel shape from the outside to the inside. Now take your cable (splayed ends like others have said) and put it in the mold and close it. Then all you have to do is pour the lead into the funnel. You can buy ladles for heating lead. I just took a piece of thinwall pipe bent it and using a hose clamp, attached it to a water pipe end cap. Get some old wheel weights from the tire dealer. Put the ladle on the stove and heat it up until you can melt the lead.

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