Bicycle Mechanics - opening SACH chains
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besides pushing a pin out, is there a way to open a Sach chain at the special link. I tried needle nose pliers.
Are they meant to be reopened anyway?
Try this ...
The PowerLink is indeed designed to be opened and closed, at least a few times. I'm embarrassed to admit I've never worked with one, preferring to assemble my SRAM chains in the conventional rivets-all-around fashion. Since I do advocate carrying a PowerLink for emergencies, I suppose I need to learn how to use one. Others have reported that they are pretty tough to open and close, which probably enhances their reliability.
OK, here's the method again:
pinch the chain together 1 full link either side of the powerlink. slide a small screwdriver through the links. hold them together with a clothespin, rubber band, or whatever. at this point, the ends of the powerlink are exposed. using the needle nose pliers, squeeze opposite corners of the link together. this method takes 10 seconds and never fails.
01-12-02, 12:21 PM
The easiest way I have found for opening them is to squeeze the plates of the power link together and then collapse the chain along it's length. It's hard to describe in words. The key is squeezing the side plates together.
01-12-02, 12:22 PM
Finding the power link on a dirty chain can be a challenge.
Before you fit the link, have a look at it closely. The way it works is fairly evident from the design. You need to compress the sideplates together, then compress the two halves together to match up the enlarged holes with the rivets.
You dont need any tools at all to undo it. After a bit of practice I was able to unlink it by hand.
Im not sure it will be much use to repair a snapped chain. Surely you need a chain tool to free up the rivets of the snapped link, and you may as well rivet the chain back together 1 link smaller.
Michael, my logic was that almost all bike chain failures involve an outer, rather than an inner, half-link. Not caring about preserving the health of the failed link, I figured I could dispense with the chain tool and free the half-disconnected plate by twisting it back and forth with pliers as I pulled it outward and off the end of the rivet. Fortunately, I have never experienced a chain failure in 150K km/almost 100K miles of cycling, presumably because I inspect them carefully, replace them per Sheldon's 0.5% elongation standard, use a good chain lube, and avoid Shimano chains.
01-13-02, 06:30 PM
I had a chain snap on my very first MTb ride.
I was pretty fit from road riding, so we borrowed some MTBs and did a 30 mile ride, down into the Snake River Canyon in SW Washington State.
It took 2 hours of pedalling to get back up,then a 10 mile road ride back home. As I returned the bike, I hammered up a steep bank on the front lawn, and the chain snapped, 5 yeards from home. That was way back before I even knew what a chain tool was.
01-15-02, 03:03 AM
I know this is retro-grouch but, I find it easier and comforting to throw the connecting link away and use my "lever action" chain tool. I hope this isn't a step toward old....
Okay I got the idea. Thanks everyone.
Pat, why are you against the special link. Do you find them weak?
(Ride without special links)
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