Q: My brake cable always binds up when I do barspins. Its already a mile long and still locks up the brakes when I spin the bars, even if its only once. When I ride the cable actually snags on my front tire when I go over bumps or land. So please explain to me how guys like Chris Doyle and do double trucks with a straight cable?
A: While the brakeless and detangler users out there will have their own opinions, there really is no reason you cant spin the bars at least once with a straight cable, without locking your brakes up. By the sensitivity of your brake system it sounds like you run your brakes tight and have a “rounds-wound” housing. This is a catch 22 because round-wound housings make your brake pull feel softer the longer the housing gets, in turn driving you to tighten up your brakes so they are all but rubbing the rim already. So step one, if you are tossing the bars, get a linear cable, like those available from Fly, Kink or Stolen. Next, figure your length, you want the cable to be just long enough to turn the desired amount of times without kinking around the headtube or snagging the stem. Remember, the shorter your cable, the more responsive your brakes will be. Since linear cables bind very little when wound up, with minimal flex, you should be able to spin your bars and still achieve the short lever throw you are looking for.