Brake Cables Buying Guide

Brake Cables are used on road bikes, mountain bikes and BMX bikes which use cable pull braking systems. The cables consist of two parts, an inner cable which is made from stainless steel and a protective cable housing. As you use your bike and it’s brakes - your brake cables can become stretched, worn and frayed - meaning that they need to be replaced.

Bike Brake Cables are interchangeable between road bikes and mountain bikes, and the same cables can be used on bikes with rim brakes and non hydraulic disc brakes. Commonly found across road bikes and mountain bikes, caliper brakes, cantilever brakes and cable disc brakes are all operated by brake cables and levers.

Although both bike gears and brakes are operated by cables, there are differences in the housing used on bike gear cables and bike brake cables. The housing used on gear cables uses a different housing to maintain a more accurate pull - meaning that gear cable housing is not strong enough to be used on brake cables, which can result in a tear and rupture of the cable.

When buying new brake cables, there are two main choices - you can purchase just the inner cable, or a complete cable kit which comes with protective cable housing. Complete cable kits usually come with two lengths of 1.5mm or 1.66mm wire and a single length of protective cable which can be cut to size.

If you are cutting brake cables, ensure to cut the right amount of cable housing to suit your frame. Most frames have lengths of cable which are exposed between cable stops. Also be sure to cut the housing cleanly to ensure the best possible performance. The easiest way of ensuring you do this correctly is to match the cut to your old brake cables.

Budget wise, brake cables typically perform the same function - but higher end cables are tougher and more resistant to corrosion - providing a solid way to improve the performance of your mountain bike or road bike.

Bike Brake Cables Online

At Westbrook Cycles, we stock and supply an excellent range of bike brake cables - suitable for both upgrade and repair of your existing bike cable system. Please do get in touch if you have any questions about the range, or which cable is best for your requirements.