Stop breaking throttle cables

Steel cables fray and break, and over 90% of the time it’s right at the throttle pedal, where there’s a radius much smaller than that recommended for a 3/32" or 1/16" steel wire rope - normally meant to go over a 1 1/2" or larger pulley. They also fray or bind where they come out of the housing, even if you use the right bicycle brake housing to reduce wear.

So don’t use one. Use instead a 1 mm synthetic rope which can be bent around a radius as tight as 2 mm without damage. I now run a 1 mm Cortland Plasma rope inside the plain plastic housing, and tie a trefoil stopper at the carburetor end and a halyard hitch at the throttle pedal. It has much less friction than the steel cables ever did and is 3x stronger. After two weekends I haven’t even adjusted it.

If a business owner wants to commercialize this idea, I can give you a contact who can sell you rope.

This is all well and good and I appreciate the creative problem solving, but I think I’ve literally had one throttle cable break ever in my life. And that was during RoboPong.

Many modern karts now have billet pedals that have nice machined radii that don’t fray the cable.

I usually run mine through a fuel line or leftover sheath. Never measured the radius though.

Actually I’ve never snapped a cable in a racing kart… I might not be doing enough laps on them.

On fraying, when I was shopping for cables for my rental karts I noticed you can get coated cables and outers. I wonder if they are less prone to fraying where the cable leaves the sheath.

1 Like

Early on broken throttle cables were a problem on Leopard. It was as the carb. Once they allowed us to modify it that went away. Other than that I never had a problem. I did see one this weekend that was frayed at the pedal.

I got this:

This is a problem I have never experienced till today and of course while leading!!! The metal ball / nipple broke off and left me dead on the track. So not really wanting this to happen again I am looking for ideas. I suspect my pedal may have been out of adjustment putting too much stress on this ball but even still I don’t want this to happen. It was suggested to replace the cable on a regular basis but I am looking for ideas and suggestions that may do away with the metal end all together. ideas?

I replace throttle cables occasionally as preventative maintenance.

1 Like

As you suspect on yours, 99% of the time this is a poorly adjusted cable. There really should only be enough force running through the cable to hold open the carb slide/butterfly. Never enough to really pull a cable apart.

As others have stated, check the cable often. Check it for wear, kinks, free movement, chafing, and tension adjustment.