UK cable specialist Clark's have announced a bunch of new stuff. First up, the new Pre-Lube cables should be of interest to anyone who's fed up of fiddling around with cables. Which is probably just about everyone. The handy little diagram shows how it works - the 19-strand inner wire has a core coated with silicone grease, which gradually softens and makes its way through the strands to the surface and lubricates the cable. The system is supposed to keep the cable lubricated for life although there's clearly a slight self-fulfilling prophecy here - once the grease has run out then presumably that's the end of the cable's life...
The cable kit comes with durable braided Kevlar-reinforced housing, aluminium sealed ferrules, end caps, and anti-scratch donuts. Past experience with Clark's cable sets suggests that you'll get more of everything than you need, which is nice - there are few things more irritating than getting a new cable set and finding that you're two inches of outer short.
The Pre-Lube cables come in four versions: MTB specific brake or gear and "universal" brake or gear with different shaped ends - just cut off the one you don't need. Prices are from £18-20.
Also new is Clark's CMD5 cable-operated disc brake. It's a neat-looking system and it's versatile. The main caliper body fits post-mount forks and there's an International Standard bracket. We like brakes that work like this as you can line them up on the bracket without having to faff about with shims. Pad clearances are adjustable at the caliper without tools and the pads float to allow them to cope with out-of-whack frame mounts. The pads themselves are thick 4mm items for extra life. Rotor sizes are 180mm front and 160mm rear and you get a Pre-Lube cable system in the box too, all for a suggested retail price of £42. Which sounds more than reasonable.
Clark's also supply organic and sintered disc pads manufactured by Carbone Lorraine for most disc systems.
We've got some cables on the go now, and we'll bring you the low-down on the performance of the brakes shortly after they arrive.