I have a frame-building project that is near completion: An old 90ies steel MTB frame was cut, and converted into a frame for a cargo bike.

In my enthusiasm, I have overlooked one detail: The original routing of the shift cables (shown in the photo below in green) is not possible any more, because

  • the frontal mounting points near the position of the former head tube were cut off (schematically shown in blue in the attached sketch), and
  • the cargo beam is attached below the bottom bracket, and therefore takes/blocks the former place of the shift cable guide.

My idea is now to re-route the shift cables along the top tube, as schematically shown in yellow in the photo.

However, I'm still missing the mounting points. If possible, I would like to avoid removing the paint and start welding again. Are there any options, like some cable casing mounting points that can be attached with screws, clamps, or something alike?

Since I believe that this could be interesting to any person that likes to tinker with old bike frames, I'm putting my question here.

Photo of frame with schematical shift cable routing

1 Answer 1


I'd go with full housing for both brake and gear cables and hold the cables on with cable clamps. There are many kinds of cable clamps to choose from. I prefer the type that have a screw clamp over the clip on type. The key will be finding clamps for your tubing diameter.

If you need to have cable stops there are clamp on versions from a variety of vendors. problemsolversbike.com has a variety of solutions for tricky problems.

Items linked are examples and not endorsements.

  • 1
    Cable stops! So my futile search was probably due to the fact that I was missing the correct words for what I need. From a quick glance at your links, and an additional search, this solution will be functional, easy to implement, and aesthetically pleasing. Thank you very much! Commented May 23, 2019 at 19:31
  • 2
    In old days end to end housing was always the way it was done. With a RD or brakes there's no problem whether the housing goes all the way through. With the FD it might be trickier if the derailleur lacks a housing stop. There's just the point to consider that long housings are more compressible and the precision of shifting/indexing or the strength of braking is maybe 'softer', so chose quality housing.
    – Carel
    Commented May 23, 2019 at 20:14
  • There are advantages and disadvantages to using full length housings. The plus side the cables are protected and essentially weatherproof. The downside is the length equates a lot of drag (resistance) for the inner cable to move solely on return spring pressure.
    – mikes
    Commented May 23, 2019 at 21:11
  • 2
    There are also rivet attached versions of anything you might need. cycle-frames.com/bicycle-frame-tubing/…
    – renesis
    Commented May 23, 2019 at 21:58

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