Bikernet Blog Search Bikernet
Ride Forever - Bikernet.com
Sunday Edition


CABLE FIGURING FROM MOTION PRO AND BIKER’S CHOICE

Hints on How to Order and Maintain Cables from the Experts

By Motion Pro, Bandit, and with illustrations from Motion Pro, and photos by Wrench
8/1/2012


Share this story:



Watch for Angela in our next AFT bike feature. Jim trained her in ordering accurate cables for their metric customs.
Watch for Angela in our next AFT bike feature. Jim trained her in ordering accurate cables for their metric customs.



Janitor's Note: This year at the Cincinnati show I met with Carmen from Biker’s Choice, and ultimately was introduced to Joe from Motion Pro. I was on a mission. Every year we build motorcycles and need to order cables. It’s always a roll of the dice trying to figure out the perfect cable length, and what fits what. Joe, from Motion Pro knew exactly the mysterious quandary I faced. We decided to work together on a tech. Actually, Joe and the Motion Pro staff liked the idea so well, they stepped up and place the following info on their web site.

I’m going to switch it around some and add a handful of comments, if need be. Let’s hit it:



Company Chest Pounding:

Motion Pro is dedicated to producing the best cables in the powersports industry. With over 20 years of race proven experience, Motion Pro products deliver performance, quality and value.

We work directly with top riders and mechanics in the AMA Dirt Track series to develop and test our products. Race proven is not just our slogan; it's our guarantee that Motion Pro products deliver the performance and quality champions demand. Our new lineup of V-Twin cables offers a product for every need. From standard OE replacement to show bike custom, Motion Pro has you covered.

Motion Pro offers a full line of black vinyl OEM replacement cables, braided stainless steel Armor Coat cables, the new bright silver finish Argent cables, and the new Blackout cables that feature black fittings on black vinyl housing for the complete "blacked out" look. All Motion Pro clutch cables are available with our longitudinally wound (LW) housing that provides a smooth, easy to pull, compression free clutch cable. Building a custom bike?

The Motion Pro custom cable shop can meet all your custom cable needs and carries a full line of housing styles, fittings and inner wires. The Motion Pro custom cable shop offers professional service, quick turn-around times and all custom cables are made in the USA. Dedication and quality is in every Motion Pro product we produce.

Here’s the info you need to get started:

Identifying Cables
• Year, make and model of machine
• Carburetor
• Throttle type
• Special routing
• Handle bar modifications
• Describe cable specifications in sufficient detail for us to build the cable you want
• Send cable for us to duplicate (indicate modifications if needed in +/- size)
• Specify housing type (Armor Coat, Argent, Black-Out, black vinyl O.E. replacement or gray vinyl for vintage bikes)



Motion Pro Housing Options:


Argent Cables: See Website at http://motionpro.com/motorcycle/search/by_motorcycle/argent_cables/

 
Blackout Cables: See Website at http://motionpro.com/motorcycle/search/by_motorcycle/blackout_cables/

Black Vinyl Replacement Cables: See Website at http://motionpro.com/motorcycle/search/by_motorcycle/black_vinyl_oe_replacement_cables/
 

 Motion Pro Cable Definitions "What's In A Word"
 

Ball-End: A ball fitting used on the end of an inner wire.



Barrel: a barrel end used on the inner wires of cables, commonly used in multiple sizes in most types of cables.

Cable Type: The type of cable, IE throttle cable, clutch cable, speedo cable

Cables Fitting Kit: See Website at http://motionpro.com/motorcycle/tools/category/cable_fittings_kit/

Cable Glossary (associated words):

Choke Cable: The cable that operates the choke.

Coil Wound: Standard Type Housing

Elbow Angle: The bend of an elbow fitting measured in degrees.









Elbow Fittings: A cable fitting usually used on the end of the cable housing, but have been used in the middle of a cable housing, with a bend measured in degrees.

Elbow
Elbow



End Caps: A small tin cap used on the end of a cable housing. Provides a means of covering the end of the housing and provides a load point for the housing.

Free Length: The amount of exposed inner wire of a cable, measured by pulling the inner wire all to one end, if there's a rubber boot on the inner wire measuring this end of the cable making sure any adjusters are collapsed, measuring just the exposed inner wire excluding any fittings on the inner wire.

Housing Diameter: The outside diameter of the housing, commonly 5mm, 6mm, & 7mm for throttle and choke cables, 7mm, 8mm, 9mm, & 10mm for clutch's and mechanical brake cables.

Housing Length: The length of the housing, measured by including any fitting on the end of the cable housing that is straight, and excluding any fitting with a bend, only measuring where the cable housing comes in contact of the elbow. Making sure any in-line adjuster is collapsed.



Housing Type Fitting: Fitting that will be installed on either or both housing ends of a cable (adjuster, elbow, cap etc…).

Housing end
Housing end



Inline Adjuster: A component of the cable designed to set free length. Used to properly adjust a cable's free play requirements.

Inner Wire: The internal wire of a cable (see free length for information on how to measure this dimension).

Inner Wire Diameter: The diameter of the inner wire, 1.2mm & 1.5mm commonly used for throttle and choke cables, and 2.0mm, 2.5mm, 3.0mm used on clutch and brake cables.

Inner Wire Type Fitting: Fitting that will be installed on either or both wire ends of a cable (bowel, nipple, ball, pear, stud, etc…)

Inline adjuster
Inline adjuster



Location of Inline Adjuster: For most metric applications this dimension is measured from the top of the housing to the top of the adjuster. In American V-Twin applications this dimension is measured from the bottom of the housing to the bottom of the adjuster.

Longitudinally-Wound Housing (LW): Housing will not compress and feel mushy under heavy loads.

Multi-Cable With Splitter: A cable that includes a junction box that allows the cable to split from a single cable into multiple cables. Can be a single cable into 2, 3 or 4 lines.

Push-Pull Cables: Used primarily in throttle application when the carburetor requires two cables to properly operate the throttle. One cable to pull it open, commonly referred to as the pull cable, and one cable to close the carb; commonly referred to as the push cable.

Speedo Cable: The cable that operates the speedometer. Tach Cable: Cable that operates the tachometer.

Stock Cable: An OEM replacement cable, made to meet or exceed OEM quality to OEM specifications

Thread Pitch & Diameter: Diameter and thread pitch of any threaded adjuster or nut.

Throttle Cable: The cable that operates the carburetor throttle assembly.

T3 Cables: See Website at http://motionpro.com/motorcycle/search/by_motorcycle/t3_cables/

Usable Travel: See Free Length



Drawings






Please include the following information if you send a drawing:
• Housing length (with in-line adjuster fully turned in if cable has in-line adjuster)
• Free length
• Inner cable diameter
• Inner cable bottom fitting (ball, barrel, dimensions)
• Inner cable top fitting (ball, barrel,dimensions)
• Housing outer diameter
• Housing in-line adjuster (y/n) NOTE:If yes, length of usable travel and specify location of in line adjuster (distance from top of housing)
• Housing bottom fitting type - straight or angled (if angled specify degree of bend) and thread diameter and pitch
• Housing bottom fitting type: straight or angled (if angled specify degree of bend) and thread diameter and pitch


Measuring images

Metric Choke Measurements
Metric Choke Measurements



Metric Clutch Measurements
Metric Clutch Measurements



Metric Speedo Measurements
Metric Speedo Measurements



Metric Throttle Measurements
Metric Throttle Measurements






Metric Fittings:



Nipple(wire end-fitting)



Threaded Adjuster with Nuts
(housing end-fitting)



Barrel (wire end-fitting)



Threaded Adjuster with Nuts (housing end-fitting)



Ball (wire end-fitting)



Pear A (wire end-fitting)





Threaded Elbow
with In-Line Adjuster

(housing end-fitting)

Elbow
Elbow



Elbow (housing end-fitting)



Clevis
(wire crimp fitting)



Elbow with Step-End (housing end-fitting)



Clevis (wire non-crimp fitting)



Elbow with Threaded Adjuster and Nuts (housing end-fitting)

Housing End Cap (end-fitting)



In-Line Adjuster



Stud (wire end-fitting)



Accordion Boot



Step Cap (housing end-fitting)





V-Twin Fittings



Eyelet (wire end-fitting)



Speedometer Nut Nipple (wire end-fitting)



Flanged Housing End for Speedo Nut



Barrel (wire end-fitting)



Flanged Housing End for Speedo Nut



Ball (wire end-fitting)



Step Cap (housing end-fitting)
 
In-Line Adjuster



90° Elbow Assembly with In-Line Adjuster and Snap-In Type Fitting



Threaded Adjuster (housing end-fitting)









Pricing:

Motion Pro Harley-Davidson Custom Cable Program

The pricing listed below is standard pricing for one-of-a-kind cables that are 80 inches or less (overall housing length). If you are referencing a Motion Pro part number and the part number being referenced is more expensive than the standard custom cable cost, pricing will be based on the part number cost plus 10%.

Throttle/Idle Cables in Black Vinyl or Black-Out housing
Single line
$35
Single line, Cruise Control idle cable
$50
Dual Pull (splitter)
$50
Throttle/Idle Cables in Argent™ housing
Single line
$55
Single line, Cruise Control idle cable
$60
Throttle/Idle Cables in AC™ (Armor Coat™) housing
Single line
$66
Single line, Cruise Control idle cable
$75
Speedo / Tach Cable
CW (coil-wound)
$55
AC™ (Armor Coat™)
$73
Argent™
$65 (can only build with 45.5" or shorter H.L.)
Black-Out™
$59

Clutch and Brake (non-hydraulic) Cables
NOTE: LW housing is stock on all 1988 and later H-D applications
NOTE: Maximum housing length of 95\" on clutch cables with eyelet. For clutch cable orders with housing lengths over 80\", increase cost by $10.00
 
CW (coil-wound)
$46
LW (longitudinally-wound)
$67
AC™ (Armor Coat™)
$73
LW - AC™
$80
Argent™
$67
LW - Argent™
$73
Black-Out™
$67


Motion Pro Metric Application Custom Cable Program

The pricing listed below is standard pricing for one-of-a-kind cables that are 80 inches or less (overall housing length). If you are referencing a Motion Pro part number and the part number being referenced is more expensive than the standard custom cable cost, pricing will be based on the part number cost plus 10%.

Throttle and Choke Cables w/ Black or Gray Vinyl housing
Single line
$35
Push/Pull Sets
$70
Dual Pull (splitter)
$50
Triple Pull (splitter)
$60
Four Pull (splitter)
$70
Throttle and Choke Cables w/AC™ (Armor Coat™) housing
NOTE: AC™ splitter cables will have BV housing below the splitter
Single line
$66
Push/Pull Sets
$132
Dual Pull (splitter)
$76
Triple Pull (splitter)
$83
Four Pull (splitter)
$93
Speedo Cable / Tach
CW (coil-wound)
$55
AC (Armor Coat)™
$73
T-3 Cables
Clutch
$65
Hot Start
$50
Throttle (pull only)
$46

NOTE: Pricing for +/- custom builds of existing part numbers only-all other requests will require further verification of build ability for model in question
Revolver Throttle Kits (Black Vinyl Only)
Custom made complete kits
$174.99
Custom Street Splitter cable kits
$219.99
Cables Only (BV set)
$90
Cables Only (Splitter set)
$135
For custom made Street kits use Part #00-2615
For custom made Dirt kits use Part #00-2614
Metric Clutch and Brake Cables-Sport Bike / Dirt Bike / ATV / Metric Cruisers
CW (coil-wound)
$40
LW (longitudinally-wound)
$46
AC (Armor Coat)™
$68
Custom Trike cables, VW based throttle cables
CW (coil-wound)
$65
AC (Armor Coat)™
$85

Expedite Program
1. The Expedite Program may not be available at the time of your build. Availability is based upon scheduling and availability of components, and is subject to review by the custom cable sales department. You will be notified if we are unable to offer this service for your order.

2. Cost is $25.00 for the first cable and $5.00 for each additional cable, excluding any shipping cost {3-Day, 2nd Day or Next Day air}
3. Cables will be made and shipped in half the current lead time. For example, if the current lead time is 5-7 working days,
an expedited order will ship in a maximum of 3 working days from receipt of order.

This was the old school way of lubing a cable before assembly. I just happen to be installing a Motion Pro clutch cable on our Bonne Belle.
This was the old school way of lubing a cable before assembly. I just happen to be installing a Motion Pro clutch cable on our Bonne Belle.



Maintenance

IMPORTANT: Motion Pro throttle and clutch cables are supplied dry without lubricant and must be lubricated with Motion Pro Cable Lube (15-0002) prior to use. Motion Pro speedometer cables are assembled with lithium grease and do not need to be lubricated prior to installation. All control cables require regular maintenance and lubrication. Improper cable maintenance will lead to premature cable failure.

Maintaining your motorcycle is an important job. Not only so that your bike will live a long life, but also so that it works at its optimum. Everyone knows the basic, really important tasks, like changing your oil, making sure your tires are in good condition, cleaning and oiling your chain, etc.

There is one very important maintenance task that a lot of people overlook. That's the process of maintaining your throttle, clutch and other control cables. Most people don't give much thought to the controls of their bike, but it is one of the most important parts of your bike, and well-maintained controls can make riding a lot more fun. On the other side, neglected controls can be downright dangerous, or leave you stranded with a broken cable.

The new Motion Pro cable comes with a new cable O-ring and Teflon barrel for the lever.
The new Motion Pro cable comes with a new cable O-ring and Teflon barrel for the lever.



Doing the work to maintain your controls and cables is pretty simple work; it just takes a small investment in time, and a little familiarity with some easy procedures. The frequency of maintenance will vary depending on the type of riding you do, what kind of bike you have, and what sort of conditions you ride in. A dirt bike that gets ridden hard in dirty or muddy conditions will need much more maintenance than a street bike that just gets ridden on sunny weekend days.

A good rule of thumb is to at least start the riding season with a good maintenance overhaul. Start with the cables, and then go from there. A street bike may only need this work once a season, a dirt bike may need it every other ride, or maybe every ride!

These procedures also apply to new replacement cables. Most replacement cables are sold without any lubrication, it is critical for their proper function and long service life that cables are properly lubricated.

I needed to grind the end of the cable so the link would pivot into place.
I needed to grind the end of the cable so the link would pivot into place.



Remove the Cables

First thing you have to do is remove the cables from your bike. Always refer to the factory service manual for your model motorcycle for these procedures. Getting any part of the disassembly or assembly wrong could result in a stuck throttle or a non-functioning clutch, both of which are extremely dangerous. You service manual will also have detailed specifications about cable adjustment and in some cases, proper cable slack, which is also critical to the proper and safe function of your motorcycle.

For all cables, the first thing to do is to clean up the housing, and inspect the cable for any wear. If the housing is worn to the coil winding, or one of the fittings is damaged or worn, this is a good time to think about some new cables. If they look good, the next step is to relubricate the inner wire.



Lubricating the Cable

Lubricating the wire inside the housing will make it slide more smoothly, and will also extend the life of the cable by reducing friction. Motion Pro makes an excellent Cable Lube, and also a Cable Luber to make this job as easy as possible. The Cable Luber installs over the end of the housing, and clamps over the inner wire. There is a port in the side of the tool where you can insert the tube from the spray can of lube, and then short bursts of the aerosol will force lubricant into the cable housing and down along the inner wire.

The lubricating process will also clean the inner wire and housing of debris. Continue to inject cable lube into the cable after the lube begins to drips out of the bottom of the housing. At first the discharge will be dirty, but when you see clean lubricant coming out you are done. Make sure to have some extra shop rags around though, because it is a somewhat messy process.

That is the main job to be done with the cables removed, and if you want to short cut this process some, you can just remove the cables from the controls, and then lubricate them while they are still in place on the bike, but this will keep you from doing a thorough inspection of the cables, and may result in cable lube getting on your bike, meaning more clean up.



Re-install the cables

When reinstalling the cables, there are a couple of very important things to do. One of the most important is to properly clean and lubricate any pivot points, like the clutch cable barrel in the clutch lever on the handlebar, and the throttle cable barrels in the throttle tube. If these points are not clean and lubricated with high quality grease, they can bind, which will cause the cable to flex and prematurely wear and fail. Lubricating these points will also result in finer feel and control, making your interface with the bike more sensitive. While you are at it, remove the clutch lever, and regrease the pivot there also, so it is working at its smoothest. This also applies to the brake lever, so that it works as smoothly as possible.

When adjusting the cables, refer to your service manual for the proper free play adjustments, as a throttle cable that is too tight can cause engine revs to rise when the bars are turned, causing an unsafe condition. If a clutch cable is too tight, it can cause the clutch to slip, and if too loose, shifting can be difficult. A note on the adjusters on a cable: Don't over tighten the adjuster fitting. They are hollow, so that the wire can pass through, and only need about 8 ft-lbs of torque to properly secure them. Over tightening the adjusters can cause them to crack and fail.

On most bikes, all of these jobs should only add about a half an hour of work to your garage time. It's time well spent to make sure your bike is performing at it's best. It will also make your riding time safer and more enjoyable.

Can't find cables for your special project bike or custom motorcycle? Let the Motion Pro Custom Cable Shop build what you need. We stock a full range of fittings, housing types and diameters and inner wire sizes to make any cable.

• Made in any of our housing materials
• Premium chrome fittings
• Made in the U.S.A.


Competitive prices, fast turn-around-time (usually 5-7 days) and professional quality service are the hallmarks of the Motion Pro Custom Cable Shop. Give us a call for all your custom cable needs!

Phone: 650-594-9600
Fax: 650-594-9610
Email: cables@motionpro.com

http://www.motionpro.com
Advertisement
 

Share this story:



Back to Tech




Reader Comments


Good info.
Would be nice if they would come up with their
own cable/brake line measuring tool/kit.

Harley has one for their products. It works
real good. No guessing.

pablo
Hoopesto., IL
Saturday, August 4, 2012
Editor Response I need one, goddammit.
--Bandit

Your thoughts on this article

Your Name
Email
City
Country
v
State/Province
v
Comments
Anti-Spam Question:
Please enter the words you see in the box, in order and separated by a space. Doing so helps prevent automated programs from abusing this service.
Submit
Clear