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Jagwire Hyper Brake Cables are a low compression design aimed at the entry level to mid range road and mountain bike rider that with a bit of careful prep also make sound choices for winter and cross duties too.
The 4mm thick plastic coated conical outers have Teflon linings and the stainless steel inners feature snip to suit pear/barrel heads to suit drop or flat levers. Detailing is generally very good right down to the anodised aluminium ferrules, crimps and those nifty silicone cuffs that prevent the outers gnawing through paintwork.
Playing devil's advocate I'd still be tempted to pay the extra and plump for their more refined racer siblings but nonetheless, ours have greatly improved modulation and feel from my Univega's otherwise dependable Tektro/Dia-Compe configuration these past nine months or so.
Let's tackle this compression issue. Low compression is good since it minimises friction and therefore mushiness when engaging the brake. However, zero (essential for crisp gear shifting) isn't since this counteracts braking efficiency (as a hapless housemate studying engineering discovered during our second year at Polytechnic! Happy days... well, not a particularly happy day for him). A choice of seven colours should be fine for most tastes with brand specific Kelly Green and Bianchi Celeste offering the last words in coordination.
Installation and set-up is pretty straightforward so long as you've half a hour's peace, decent cutters and work methodically. Being a daily driver, my Univega sees the elements in all their glory year round so I decided to keep maintenance to a minimum by carefully stripping the cables to their individual component parts and running the linings the complete length, thus protecting the otherwise exposed inners. This has worked wonders, although doesn't quite match the sealed type of cable when fed a diet of salty coastal roads in the middle of January but then run these and you'll have saved a bundle and a few grams to boot.
Achieving smooth, graceful lines where they exited the levers proved pretty simple too and it wasn't long before modulation and feel were spot-on. Cable stretch is a moot point so feel free to trim quite short-being over cautious and leaving the rear slightly longer saw ours brush against the mudguard, fraying annoying during our first outing. Thankfully there was sufficient to crop short before I went all belt 'n' braces, soldering the ends for good measure.
Cost effective upgrades for lower to mid range brakesets.
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Make and model: Jagwire Hyper Brake Cable Kit
Size tested: Purple
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
"Step up from generic factory housing to high performance braking with a Jagwire Hyper Cable Kit. Compatible with SRAM, Shimano and Campagnolo, these versetile L3-lined housings offer a universal solution for road, mountain and cross bikes". No argument here.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
CGX low compression outers with a teflon liner and stainless steel inner wires.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
While lacking the outright refinenent of the performance orientared racer siblings, with a bit of careful preparation, the hyper make excellent choices for winter, cross and mountain bikes thanks to simple, yet solid construction.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Good quality materials, moderate pricing and a choice of seven colours.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Stainless inners seemed prone to fraying unless promptly crimped/soldered.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes, makes a very good workshop staple.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Age: 38 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)