If you’re no longer getting the same action from your rear brake then it could mean the cable has become contaminated. Here, we’ll be working on the rear brake as it is the slightly trickier of the two to do. Watch on to find out how to fit a new brake cable.

Tools you need to replace a rear brake cable:

  • Allen Keys
  • Cable cutters
  • Internal cable routing kit/old spoke
  • New brake cable
  • New outer cable
How to fit a new brake cable

Snip the clamp off of the cable

We’ll be replacing the inner cable and the little bit of outer cable nearest to the calliper – because it’s nearest the back wheel it’s often a point of contamination, and can get a bit gross.

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To begin, you’ll need to remove the pinch bolt on the brake, then snip the end of the cable and pull it free from the calliper and then remove the outer cable.

Remove the cable stop and then pull the cable through the frame. If you hold in the rear brake lever you should be able to pull the cable right through and then dispose of it.

Pulling the cable through the lever in how to fit a new brake cable

Pull the cable through the lever and then replace it

Take your new cable and reverse what you’ve just done, but before you thread it through the frame be sure to replace the ferrel if you’ve lost it. Once done, you can thread the cable into the top tube and use your J-bend spoke to fish it out the other end.

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Snip a fresh piece of outer cable the same length as what you had before, bear in mind that fresh cable cutters will give the cleanest cut.

Using fresh cable cutters to get the cleanest result in how to fit a new brake cable

Use fresh cable cutters to get the cleanest result

Thread the cable stop back on to the cable in the right direction and pop it back in the frame, then replace the bolt.

Now, you can replace the short bit of outer cable. Again, make sure you have a ferrel in place then thread the inner into the outer and through the cable clamp.

Clamping the pad by hand before tightening the pinch bolt in how to fit a new brake cable

Clamp the pads by hand before tightening the pinch bolt

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Clamp the brake pads by hand and secure the cable with the pinch bolt, then check at the lever that it feels tight.

Pulling the lever into the bar also helps bed in the cable, meaning when you next ride your bike there won’t be a change in performance.

Crimping the end of the cable in how to fit a new brake cable

Once finished, crimp the end of the cable

Once done, match the cable tension to the front break and tag the end of the cable with a crimp.