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  #1  
Old 20 Feb 2009
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Question To oil clutch/throttle cables or not?

I'm a bit confused as most sources tell to oil clutch/throttle cables now and then, but on the other hand my genuine Suzuki service manual does not say a word about it. I see that oil can stick more dirt and that will do no good. Perhaps the cable tubes have special material inside that does not need oiling?
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  #2  
Old 21 Feb 2009
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Hello,

clutch and brake cables come from the factory lubed up with thick grease but over time this gets washed/pulled out the ends.

I would use something like chain lube (because it's sticky) and a aerosol cable luber if you don't have access to a hydraulic cable luber to force some grease down the cable.
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Old 21 Feb 2009
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I'm betting the Suzuki manual is under 10 years old and designed for their techs? Their techs don't need the mess and "Elf n Safety" hassles of lubeing cables and will view any failure as repeat business.

You on the other other hand want the cables to last as long as posible, so replacing the factory grease as it's lost is a good idea. My own preference is for motor oil down the cable then a blob of grease on the ends to seal it in and dirt out.

Andy
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Old 21 Feb 2009
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In service manual greasing of cable ends and levers is mentioned but no word about cables themselves.
I forgot I had brand new spare clutch cable, so I took a good look at it. Seems there is no typical grease inside. The cable itself is coated with thin layer of stuff that looks more like wax/paraffin than usual grease or oil. Unfortunately can't see inside the tube, can only open it at adjustment thread.
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  #5  
Old 21 Feb 2009
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Some bikes have teflon-lined cables, they should not be lubricated.
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Old 21 Feb 2009
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Teflon: No Lube

plus one on the Teflon cables. I suppose a bit of grease on the end would be OK but don't force oil down a Teflon coated cable. Some may use a dry Graphite as well? I remember reading something about this on the Motion Pro site.

One tip about carrying a spare cable: Use Gaffa tape to tape cable ends when the cable is stored. Will keep it nice and clean, like new.


Patrick

Last edited by mollydog; 21 Feb 2009 at 21:02.
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  #7  
Old 21 Feb 2009
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Nope.

On most bikes, from the 80's onwards, if they are not Teflon coated they will have a nylon sleeve on the inner cable.

As a general rule, you do NOT oil or grease cables unless they are worn out. Then a bit of lube as temporary relief is ok.

You SHOULD grease/oil the nipple/holder.

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Old 21 Feb 2009
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No Lube ?

Not wanting to disagree too strongly with the above but I would always lube or ensure that the cable stays lubricated and free from cable rotting dirt, salt or other krud that will shorten the life of the cable. Teflon lubed or nylon sleeved covers only do half the above job.

Turning the clutch handle bar adjustment to face backwards is not enough.

My 10 cents worth..

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Old 23 Feb 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gixxer.rob View Post
Not wanting to disagree too strongly with the above but I would always lube or ensure that the cable stays lubricated and free from cable rotting dirt, salt or other krud that will shorten the life of the cable. Teflon lubed or nylon sleeved covers only do half the above job.

Turning the clutch handle bar adjustment to face backwards is not enough.

My 10 cents worth..a

The problem with lubing teflon coated cables is that the lube dissolves the teflon and you get a slurry of oil and teflon which doesn’t lube at all. It works for a few thousand km but then it’s worse then ever.
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Old 23 Feb 2009
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Been there, done that!

Last edited by mollydog; 25 Mar 2009 at 07:54.
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  #11  
Old 23 Feb 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AliBaba View Post
The problem with lubing teflon coated cables is that the lube dissolves the teflon and you get a slurry of oil and teflon which doesn’t lube at all. It works for a few thousand km but then it’s worse then ever.
Yup, +1! My cable was getting old, so i lubed it for the rest of the trip. Within a few thousand k's, i had the forarm of a butcher! If it's teflon coated, don't lube it, it'll just get worse. As for the others, well, i really couldn't tell you.
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Old 23 Feb 2009
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I stand corrected.

Just for my own interests sake what type of lubricant has been used that dissolved the teflon coating? RP-7, WD-40, chain lube, grease, oil ?
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Old 23 Feb 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gixxer.rob View Post
I stand corrected.

Just for my own interests sake what type of lubricant has been used that dissolved the teflon coating? RP-7, WD-40, chain lube, grease, oil ?
Mine was some sort of prenatrating lube in a can i bought in Medellin, sorta like WD-40 or 1-2-3. It literally destroyed my cable lining! I only used it because the cable was going south on me and i figured i had nothing to loose because i had a spare in my box. Lesson learned. Maybe engine oil wouldn't have the same effects?
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Old 24 Feb 2009
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Originally Posted by gixxer.rob View Post
I stand corrected.

Just for my own interests sake what type of lubricant has been used that dissolved the teflon coating? RP-7, WD-40, chain lube, grease, oil ?

I dislike heavy throttle-cables so I always lube them when they wear out, this gives me okay performance until I can fit new ones.

I have used CRC, WD40 and chain lube (yes I have two chain-bikes) and all gave the same problem. Chain lube didn’t lube much at all.
Personally I don’t believe in dry Graphite on but it’s worth trying, maybe next time but don’t hold your breathe I will change the cables shortly and they will probably last 80kkm
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  #15  
Old 6 Mar 2009
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All new cables on motorcycles from 90s onwards (maybe earlier as suggested) are indeed teflon lined and factory greased.

If yours are sticking, they are WORN and can not be revived. You can oil them but this will be a temporary fix as in time, the oil will glog and gunk up and just make things worse.

All you can do is replace them
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