Glad you found it. I usually just buy new cables when mine starts to get tight for that reason.
Concerning the new bike, It just reduces the amount of things that can go wrong, but doesn't eliminate it from happening. I was racing a 2000 model ktm300 2 years ago when I got the chance to race a 2009 300. I decided 2 miles in that I'd never race my old bike again...the newer bike was so much better and I worked so much less to go fast.