A little background on finding an intermediate parking brake cable

If you need to replace your intermediate brake cable and you want a NEW cable you are pretty much out of luck.  Several people have searched for new intermediate brake cables without success. Some auto parts sources still list the intermediate cable but when you place an order they will either cancel the order or send the wrong cable.

If you want to try to find a new intermediate brake cable for the Buick Reatta, all the years are the same. The OEM P/N is 1642481. An aftermarket cable from Wagner Brake is P/N BC129671. There is also a Bendix P/N C1703. I have not been able to find any of these anywhere.

I tried to find an alternative solution that would be a direct fit. I wrote to Inline Tube Company in Shelby Township, Michigan. They made a duplicate cable (not quite exactly the same) for $100.00 plus shipping. The cable is the correct length and has correct fittings on the outer casing and the correct cable end at the rear. They also put on an outer protective sleeve similar to what came originally on the Reatta but it is larger diameter and is a bit of trouble to feed the cable through the openings where it gets routed. Unfortunately the threaded rod for adjustment has the wrong size thread. They supply the cable with 5/16-18 threads. The original GM cable and replacements listed earlier have metric M8-1.25 threads. That special order part number for the Inline Tube cable is SFT-15 at a cost of $100.00 plus shipping.

An alternate solution that I have come up with

I bought a cable for right rear Chevrolet and GMC trucks - 1984 through 1986.  Price range is from around $10.00 up to $30.00. This cable also fits a few other models of truck. This cable is very close in length of cable and length of outer casing to the original Reatta part but this cable also has the 5/16-18 threads. I also bought a new Reatta adjusting equalizer (ACDelco P/N 25537451) with the internal nut.

There are four different numbers I have found for right rear Chevrolet and GMC truck cable.

  1. Dorman -  P/N C93249
  2. ACDelco - P/N 18P428
  3. Wagner - P/N BC108764
  4. Pioneer - P/N CA5580

There are other cables / suppliers who list cables for the same vehicle (Chevy / GMC trucks) but they have a ball on the end rather than the cylinder we need for our cable connector. That is why I listed only those four possibilities that I did. The four cables I listed have the correct end for the Reatta.

I have made the modifications and installed the cable on my car to insure fitment and functionality. Click on each tab below to see what I did to make it fit.

How to modify the cable

I have used and proved that the cable made by Dorman (P/N C93249) will work

The first modification to the cable is to remove the locking fingers at the rear cable casing fitting so it looks like the Reatta fitting.

compare cables 1a

I then removed material from the large diameter of that fitting to allow fitment of the rear Reatta equalizer (ACDelco P/N 25515645). A lathe would be nice but I did it on a bench grinder.

grinding cable OD 1a

The large diameter measured 0.750 before I ground it. It needs to be around 0.625 to 0.650 diameter. 

measuring cable ODa

After this modification the cable is ready to use.

Please note that the cable has a spring on it similar to the Reatta front cable. I left the spring on the cable when I installed it in my car.

Click on the next tab above...

How to modify the equalizer

I bought a new Reatta adjusting equalizer (ACDelco P/N 25537451) with the internal nut and modified it to accept the truck cable. 

The modification is to re-tap the threads in the nut from M8-1.25 to 5/16-18. Then this part is ready for use.


Click on the next tab above...

How to install the cable

Installing the modified cable is basically the same as installing a standard Reatta intermediate brake cable

I thought I would include a couple of photos of the modified cable installed on my car. I found that using brake pliers made dis-assembly of the cable being removed from the car a little easier.

brake pliers 1abrake pliers 2a

front cable connection a

rear cable connection a

Thanks to fordrodsteven, member of the AACA and ROJ Reatta forums, for this information and the photos.