What is the better way for best chain etc life?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Bigbananabike, Oct 28, 2008.

  1. Bigbananabike

    Bigbananabike Member

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    Here are the options;

    1/ Do what I do and keep the cassette for say 3 chains (Shimano 9 speed) and then replace the cassette and chain at say 15 000 + kms.

    2/ Replace the cassette and chain at say 9000kms.

    What would be your preference and why?
     
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  2. CDAKIAHONDA

    CDAKIAHONDA New Member

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    I prefer to change chains more often under plan 1 based on checking chain pin wear not just mileage. My reasons include not only reduced wear on cassettes (chain rings, and derailleur pulleys) but also better shifting performance. I am a firm believer in keeping your chain well lubed and the entire drive train clean. I had a stiff link in a chain actually "ball up" in the derailleur and under the pressure of a standing start actually snap the derailleur hanger. The derailleur actually came around and broke a carbon seat stay! A new frame was an expensive reminder of proper chain maintenance for me. (Don't ignore a stiff link! - words to live by;) )
     
  3. Bigbananabike

    Bigbananabike Member

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    Yek, bad news re your frame:eek:
    At least it wasn't while you were riding.
    I try to look after my drive line but as I ride through winter its not in perfect condition all the time.
     
  4. Sikhandar

    Sikhandar New Member

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    My (latest) experience. I own a Chorus 2005 cassette with 45000-50000 kms and it's still undistinguishable from the new one. I did about 15000 kms per year and 50-60 races (80 kms/race...) per year. I change the chain every (nearly) 6000 kms; obviously before chainging it I do the "caliber" measurement check, if it's still good I keep it for another month...

    BTW, I use only Record chains...
     
  5. Bigbananabike

    Bigbananabike Member

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    I'm impressed that is big mileage from one cassette:)

    Do you or are you going to replace the cassette or sprockets when they start slipping or some other time?


     
  6. Sikhandar

    Sikhandar New Member

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    Dunno, whan I raced and I was young I wasn't doing many kms (the team changed my bike and sprockets every year), and it's 3 years that I started again racing... so I don't know! Maybe my sprocket is having a long life for the fact that it has a 1) complete steel construction with titan finishing (maybe this helps) 2) I often change the chain, so the cassette rarely "sees" a deformed chain. Perhaps a deformed chain is more "deformant" on the cassette (hypothesis eh!)
     
  7. gemship

    gemship New Member

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    I always find it interesting how folks relate to replacing chains in a "useful service life". I've never done it although I have twisted a link on a bike I've a couple thousand miles on and because of that the chain skipped. It happened on my commuter, a bungee cord found it's way between the cassette,chain and silly plastic spoke protector. Took two pliers and straightened out the chain, works like new. This is my commuter, so I'm pretty cheap about it but I suppose when it comes time for a chain replacement I'll most likely do the whole drivetrain in a process of elimination starting with the chain of course.

    So how do you all know when to replace a chain? Is it bad performance related or just anal preventive must have the best equipment feeling?
     
  8. Sikhandar

    Sikhandar New Member

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    nice'n'easy... you'll just need a caliber.

    pick your chain and measure the distance between 6 repeating units. The measure should be 132.6 mm

    =O-O=O-O=O-O=O-O=

    this is the chain. Well, from the sign "|" to the other

    -O|=O-O=O-O=O-O=O-O=O-O=|O


    ah ok (edit) waaaaaaaait this is the Campagnolo 10 measurement... I suppose that on your manual of shimano things you could have another distance. (look on the internet for the manual of your chain)
     
  9. Peter@vecchios

    [email protected] New Member

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    Measure the length. Rohloff chain checker works great or measure 12 links with a ruler. If pin to pin is 12 and 1/16 inch, replace. It's like the oil in your car, replace before it's done being oil and the innards of your engine will last longer. Same for a chain. You can use a chain to the point that it doesn't work anymore but being stranded is no fun.
     
  10. AngryPenguin

    AngryPenguin New Member

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    I spoke to a nice bloke the other week who does some crazy sort of mileage that swore by rotating chains. He had three chains per cassette and replaced after 1500 miles, after all three chains had been through he then ran them for about 500 miles each or until the cassette wore out. This kept his cassette nice and new apparently.

    I don't do that much milage (compared to some of you guys) and I like to think I look after it, so mine tend to last about 18 months or so (~3000 miles). Bearing in mind that winter lasts a good 6 months in the UK :(
     
  11. dhk2

    dhk2 Active Member

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    I've found the Park CC-3 gauge is a lot easier and quicker than measuring with a ruler. For under $10 USD, it's a handy go-no/go gauge that makes finding that 0.75% wear limit foolproof.
     
  12. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately that checker and others like it aren't actually measuring just the inter-pin distance, which is the critical value. They're measuring the inter-bushing distance, which varies between chain makers and chains. If the ID of a bushing is bigger, the chain will show more wear than is actually present. KMC chains come straight out of the box and show wear via chain checkers. Likewise, chain checkers can give a low reading on wear, too.

    Still checking the chain with a measurement tool is the key to knowing when a chain is dead and to maximizing the life of a cassette. While a lot of people will routinely toss a chain or cassette at a given number of miles, or will rotate 12 chains through cassette and then discard the cassette after 17 chain changes or will discard the chain when either 1000 miles have been passed or the Moon is waxing in Capricorn, there is no basis for doing such things. You can do well by just changing the chain when it's measured wear is too much and changing the cassette when its teeth show too much wear.

    My current KMC-X10SL chain has over 4000 miles on it and still safely passes the ruler test.
     
  13. Peter@vecchios

    [email protected] New Member

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    Except we find that it's not as accurate as the Rohloff. VERY pessimistic, IMO.
    But if you use it as a relative guide. Measure when new and compare when the chain is not new, it can give you an idea of stretch.
     
  14. Dan Burkhart

    Dan Burkhart New Member

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    My experience has been that the Park guage is generally reliable for non-bushing chains up to 7 speed, less so for 8 speed chains, and totally unreliable for 9 and 10 speed chains. It will indicate a brand new 9 speed chain as worn out.
    Been thinking about trying out one of the Shimano guages. The ruler method is most reliable, but I am at the stage of life where my glasses spend half the time on my nose, and the other half at the other end of the shop, and I definitely need them to read a ruler.
     
  15. artemidorus

    artemidorus New Member

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    I've found ruler measurements to be unreliable and falsely reassuring, at least when done by me. Engineering types certainly will do better.
    I can vouch for the Park CC-3 and can affirm that it does not measure new Shimano 9spd chains as being worn - it's spot on for Shimano chains, in fact.
    I take the point about it not working with other chains - I'll avoid the other brands.
     
  16. dhk2

    dhk2 Active Member

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    Surprised to hear about issues with gauging of the interbushing distance vs the interpin length, or that it's not reliable on 9 sp chains. Had assumed that the bushing diameter would be standardized and tightly controlled on chains, just like the 1/2" link measurement.

    Just checked my Ultegra 9-sp chain with both the CC-3 and a steel rule. At 3K miles, it appears to have about 1/32" of wear over 12", and the gauge doesn't drop in. Past experience says I should get ~ 5K miles before the 0.75% side drops and I replace the chain. Also, checking a new KMC 1/2" chain on my track bike, was surprised to find it actually measures slightly less than 12" pin-to-pin.
     
  17. Peter@vecchios

    [email protected] New Member

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    What he said!!
     
  18. Sikhandar

    Sikhandar New Member

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    In my post I've only reported what the Campagnolo manual of the chain says... "the measurement must be done with a caliber ruler", that is this thing:

    http://m2.sourcingmap.com/smap/images/item/n/07b/ux_a07050400ux0006_ux_n.jpg

    (that is also useful to measure other bicycle things, such as forks, stems, handlebar reach and drop, collars etc)

    What does the shimano chain manual says?
     
  19. Peter@vecchios

    [email protected] New Member

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    Must buy the 10s specific, manufacturered by shimano, measuring caliper. NOT compatible with shimano 9s or 8s chains...sorry!!
     
  20. Akadat

    Akadat New Member

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    A steel ruler is very accurate for measuring chain wear over 12 complete links from pin centre to pin centre. A new chain will be 12". If the distance is less than 1/16" over, chain is OK. If the distance is more than 1/16" over it is time to replace the chain but the sprockets are OK. If the distance is 12 & 1/8" or more then the sprockets will most likely be damaged.

    Just hold a 12" ruler against the chain zeroed on one pin, and then look at the 12" mark. No need to count the links.
     
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