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I realized today that the front brake noodle on my folding bike is most likely broken. It looks normal as long as the wheel faces left or forward. As soon as the wheel faces right, however, the noodle gets a weird bend (see pictures). Facing left Facing right (1) Facing right (2)

The brakes are still working, but I suppose I should replace this noodle in the near future. Should I look for something special or are they standard parts? Do I need to replace other parts like the cable?

In addition, I am wondering how I can make the replacement noodle last longer. The big cable tree of the folding bike seems to put quite some pressure on the noodle.

Thanks for your help. Matthias

  • Changing the angle of the shot makes it hard to actually see whats going on. – Batman Dec 1 '16 at 20:46
  • It appears that the noodle tube has separated from the tip piece. You should replace the noodle yesterday. The one time I bought one at a bike shop it was incredibly cheap. If you've caught it early enough the cable may still be OK, but odds are it's frayed there by now, so it will need replacement too. – Daniel R Hicks Dec 1 '16 at 22:30
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    You also need to consider whether that spiral wrap around your cables is constraining the movement of the cables too much. It may have contributed to the failure. – Daniel R Hicks Dec 1 '16 at 22:32
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A noodle is totally cheap, and you should replace this immediately even if the brake appears to be working. Dragging the inner around a sharp bend will fray the strands, leading to a sudden failure and a lack of front brake when it snaps.

Noodles come in two different bend radius.

  • 90 degrees, often used on the rear brake
  • 135 degrees, which is most common on the front brake.

Your folding bike might use either, it looks like a 90 degree one to me.

Note, you should change the inner brake cable at the same time. Depending on condition, its also a good time to replace the outer if anything is wrong with it, like cracks or bends or rust.

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  • Wiggle have a brake repair kit for cheap, and they used to have noodles for a few dollars. This is not an expensive fix, just do it. – Criggie Dec 1 '16 at 21:13
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    Well, ideally you want to use the noodle that was designed for the particular brake; I've used 3rd party noodles with some Avid brakes and had issues with the quick release (but not with the Avid noodle). I don't see evidence based on the pictures that the noodle is in bad condition. – Batman Dec 1 '16 at 21:53
  • @Batman you suspect the noodle holder is bent or oversized? – Criggie Dec 1 '16 at 22:44
  • I think DRH's comment above clarified the situation. – Batman Dec 1 '16 at 23:04
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    Thanks for your help. The noodle was indeed badly bent and broken at one location. The cables seemed fine to me, so I let them be for now. Total cost about 10 EUR including shipping. – Matthias Kauer Dec 11 '16 at 12:56

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