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  1. #1
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    Stainelss v. Teflon-Coated Cables

    Time to replace my derailleur cables and housing and I'm debating between Jagwire Ripcord and Switch. The only difference I can gather is the Ripcord cable is teflon coated, whereas the Switch is just stainless. The cost difference is negligible, so my only concerns are whether the teflon-coated provide a shifting benefit and if so, is the possibility of the coating coming off worth that benefit.

    Any input is appreciated. Thanks

  2. #2
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    In my limited experience with the coated inner wires, I haven't found any benefit over the standard die-drawn stainless ones, so I save the dough and use the normal SS wires.

    You might also check to see if the switch and ripcord housings are different. If not you might go for the less expensive kit unless you like the cosmetics of black wires where they're exposed.
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Backnsaddleagain
    Time to replace my derailleur cables and housing and I'm debating between Jagwire Ripcord and Switch. The only difference I can gather is the Ripcord cable is teflon coated, whereas the Switch is just stainless. The cost difference is negligible, so my only concerns are whether the teflon-coated provide a shifting benefit and if so, is the possibility of the coating coming off worth that benefit.
    Well, the coating does come off, particularly at the points where the cable enters and exits the housing. (After a few rides, my teflon cables are always shiny at those points.)

    More important in my opinion is the quality of the cable housing. Get the kit that has the superior housing. If there's no difference, then do as Francis suggests and choose based on price or color.

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the responses. They, of course, lead to the question of whether anyone is aware of a difference between the housing in the Ripcord kit vs. the Switch kit. Anyone?

  5. #5
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    If you buy one of these kits with housing and cables together, I'd just go with whatever cable it offers, like others say the teflon coating only lasts so long (and some say it gunks up the housing somewhat over time). The Switch housing isn't the same as Ripcord housing, though; Ripcord is the kevlar reinforced compressionless housing, Switch isn't (Ripcord makes for the better brake housing IME).
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  6. #6
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    Teflon wires are slicker. They will gum up if you lube them, don't do that and they work well for a long time. For brakes and derailleurs there is not really a huge advantage. My Gravity dropper has a weak spring in it and I do notice the lower drag on the teflon cable.
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  7. #7
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    My experiece has been thus:

    Teflon coated cables are much better in the initial stages of life. They are so smooth, and don't bind on the sealed sections of cable ends. However as they age they start to shed the coating, which gets trapped in the outer making them worse than a regular cable.

    The best all-round cables I've had are the specific Dura-ace packaged cable.
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikinfoolferlife
    If you buy one of these kits with housing and cables together, I'd just go with whatever cable it offers, like others say the teflon coating only lasts so long (and some say it gunks up the housing somewhat over time). The Switch housing isn't the same as Ripcord housing, though; Ripcord is the kevlar reinforced compressionless housing, Switch isn't (Ripcord makes for the better brake housing IME).
    Here's what the Jagwire site says http://www.jagwireusa.com/index.php/...s/mountain/469

    The derailleur housing for both is 4.5mm LEX reinforced housing w/ L3 liner. The Ripcord brake housing is 5mm Kevlar reinforced compressionless housing w/ L3 liner while the Switch brake housing is 5mm CGX low-compression brake housing w/ L3 liner.

    The Ripcord has teflon coated cables and the Switch has stainless steel cables.

    Ripcord has better brake housing. I'd buy the Ripcord brake and the Switch derailleur, assuming the Switch was cheaper. Otherwise, buy all Ripcord.

  9. #9
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    My experience..

    The problem here in MA with all the rain and mud means that anything that is not full housing will get jammed. 10 miles and shifting is gone. That is all that matters around here.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by meloh1
    Here's what the Jagwire site says http://www.jagwireusa.com/index.php/...s/mountain/469

    The derailleur housing for both is 4.5mm LEX reinforced housing w/ L3 liner. The Ripcord brake housing is 5mm Kevlar reinforced compressionless housing w/ L3 liner while the Switch brake housing is 5mm CGX low-compression brake housing w/ L3 liner.

    The Ripcord has teflon coated cables and the Switch has stainless steel cables.

    Ripcord has better brake housing. I'd buy the Ripcord brake and the Switch derailleur, assuming the Switch was cheaper. Otherwise, buy all Ripcord.
    Thanks, meant the brake housing in particular.
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  11. #11
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    I've use and have gotten many recommendations for the XTR cable sets, and they are teflon coated. So far they seem to be the best one's I've used and retain the snappy feel a long time. Did not like the Avid Flack Jacket cables.

    Now that I think about it, my 1996 Stumpjumper has XT components on it (from that era), don't recall having changed cables and I swear that bike still shifts better than any components I've had since...xtr or xo. I think the cables are stock shimano whatevers with regular stainless cables.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Backnsaddleagain
    Time to replace my derailleur cables and housing and I'm debating between Jagwire Ripcord and Switch. The only difference I can gather is the Ripcord cable is teflon coated, whereas the Switch is just stainless. The cost difference is negligible, so my only concerns are whether the teflon-coated provide a shifting benefit and if so, is the possibility of the coating coming off worth that benefit.

    Any input is appreciated. Thanks
    I use only teflon coated cables. Full length housing, if possible, and no lube. Works great, does not gum up as there is no lube to attract dirt. Just watch out for "pre-lubed" housing. Defeats the idea.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexRandall
    My experiece has been thus:

    Teflon coated cables are much better in the initial stages of life. They are so smooth, and don't bind on the sealed sections of cable ends. However as they age they start to shed the coating, which gets trapped in the outer making them worse than a regular cable.

    The best all-round cables I've had are the specific Dura-ace packaged cable.
    Never experience "shredding" myself. I suspect the housing ends were not finished off properly. Burs at the housing ends are one of the biggest causes of poor cable performance.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlexRandall
    My experiece has been thus:

    Teflon coated cables are much better in the initial stages of life. They are so smooth, and don't bind on the sealed sections of cable ends. However as they age they start to shed the coating, which gets trapped in the outer making them worse than a regular cable.

    The best all-round cables I've had are the specific Dura-ace packaged cable.
    Exactly my experience. Word for word. Used an XTR cable set once and found the shifting awesome initially but untimately I had to change them sooner than a good set of high end stainless inners, due to the teflon flaking off around the cable stops.

    I find the Dura-ace inner cables and outers the best system that is not a silly price. I buy the outer by the meter from CRC as the kits end up with wastage.

    Teflon cables should be perfect for full length or full sealed systems though!

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