Jagwire Hyper Derailleur Cable Kit hasn't wowed me in the same fashion as its more glamorous racer sibling but it successfully fills the void between budget and bling. Cheap enough to replace on a seasonal basis, the generous, sturdy and yet compliant housings go a long way to overcoming the problems presented by convoluted cable runs and ensuring the Teflon liners' uninterrupted flow maximises foul weather performance when combined with a monthly blast of PTFE spray.
Bursting into the packet and hastily uncoupling the wire ties, the prodigious outers stretch for over two metres – sufficient for tandems, recumbents and other specialist configurations so STI/Ergo systems and very big frames are a walk in the park. Be careful not to lose the sealed goody bag though, since this contains the nine sealed ferrules, crimps, donuts and protective rubber boots. The LEX outer differs from the brake kit in that it employs linear rather than coiled strands, thus ensuring completely compression-less performance.
In common with other Jagwire housings, this seems very resistant to cutting – great news for the rough and tumble of spirited singletrack but a swine in the workshop on a Saturday night. A slightly dulled set of snips nearly ruined ours but the bench grinder came to the rescue with a precision cut... From here it's just a question of slotting the outers in place and feeding the other components through accordingly. Sweet cable flows are a cinch, even at the final loop to the rear mech, but remember to position the cuffs carefully since wet undergrowth and cable rub spell trouble for paintwork.
My crosser with its Tiagra mechs and original equipment cables was arguably the ideal guinea pig and even though the original cables weren't in bad shape, installing the Hyper saw front and rear mechs shift crisply back and forth, seemingly unaffected by split-second changes, even under load. Aside from a momentary glitch on the workstand, the absence of tell-tale chattering suggests last there's no issue with cable stretch, thus making them a good choice for last minute pre-race pit-stops too, especially if you use a modified MTB as a spare bike during cross meets.
Versatile derailleur cables with an excellent performance to cost ratio.
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Make and model: Jagwire Hyper Derailleur 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?
Here's the sales patter: "The Hyper series cable kits are an upgrade over original equipment housings and are compatible with SRAM®/Shimano® mountain systems and SRAM® Shimano® and Campagnolo® road systems. These versatile cable kits are packed with value and the L3 lined housings will deliver miles of smooth performance". Does exactly what it says on the packaging."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Three layer construction comprising of plastic zero compression outer, Teflon liner and stainless inner wires with pear/barrel ends.
These seem prudent upgrades with lower to mid range systems in mind, although I'd be happy enough running them on higher end groupsets - especially those handed down to winter/trainers.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
The hyper are a very competent package that strike a good balance between performance, longevity and cost. Universal ends will suit riders with more than one genre of machine and a few quick tweaks go a long way to ensuring they're fit and forget.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Reasonable quality and comprehensive.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Nothing, given the design brief.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes, excellent everyday cables
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)