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  1. #1
    Cyclist Old Gammy Leg's Avatar
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    No chain stretch after 2,500 - replace anyway?

    I now have over 2,500 miles on my Campy record 10 speed chain, and after checking both with a ruler and a Park tool there seems to be no stretch whatsoever. Which I find a bit surprising.

    Should I replace the chain anyway? Record chains aren't cheap, but I don't want it to wear out the sprockets etc.

  2. #2
    8speed DinoSORAs Ed Holland's Avatar
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    The only thing I would be mindful of is whether there is any wear to the chain's rollers. This will be apparent in the amount of play in the rollers, in comparison to a new chain (I can't give you a measure for this I'm afraid). If all seems OK, there is no need to replace.

    Cheers,

    Ed
    Get a bicycle. You will certainly not regret it, if you live.

  3. #3
    Senior Member sydney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Holland
    The only thing I would be mindful of is whether there is any wear to the chain's rollers. This will be apparent in the amount of play in the rollers, in comparison to a new chain (I can't give you a measure for this I'm afraid). If all seems OK, there is no need to replace.

    Cheers,

    Ed
    Never heard of that one.Standard drill is just measure the chain as per Sheldon Browns method.

  4. #4
    8speed DinoSORAs Ed Holland's Avatar
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    ...agreed, though I have noticed "roller wear" in chains along with the usual change in length. I promise I'm not making it up although I'm totally unable to expound on the possible effects on the rest of the components.

    Ed
    Get a bicycle. You will certainly not regret it, if you live.

  5. #5
    You need a new bike supcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Gammy Leg
    I now have over 2,500 miles on my Campy record 10 speed chain, and after checking both with a ruler and a Park tool there seems to be no stretch whatsoever. Which I find a bit surprising.

    Should I replace the chain anyway? Record chains aren't cheap, but I don't want it to wear out the sprockets etc.
    Do not replace the chain until it is worn.

  6. #6
    Senior Member capwater's Avatar
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    Replace your chain every 2000 miles no matter how hard you ride. Take it to your bike shop with your Visa card and let them rack up the bill because this is a very difficult job that requires a highly trained professional and tools worth thousands of dollars.

    Seriously, measure, measure, measure. It's the only way. I am at about the same mileage on one of my bikes. Bought a new chain on sale while I was in Performance and was ready to install back home when I measured and found the old one perfectly fine.

  7. #7
    Senior Member sydney's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by capwater
    Replace your chain every 2000 miles no matter how hard you ride. Take it to your bike shop with your Visa card and let them rack up the bill because this is a very difficult job that requires a highly trained professional and tools worth thousands of dollars.
    You forgot to say to have them also replace the cassette with the most expensivve one they have,because chains and cassettes 'wear together'. Any carpet smoking muppet should know that.

  8. #8
    Recovering Retro-grouch CRUM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sydney
    You forgot to say to have them also replace the cassette with the most expensivve one they have,because chains and cassettes 'wear together'. Any carpet smoking muppet should know that.
    From Sheldon's own lips


    Quote Originally Posted by Sheldon Brown's Website
    If the rivet is less than 1/16" past the mark, all is well.

    If the rivet is 1/16" past the mark, you should replace the chain, but the sprockets are probably undamaged.

    If the rivet is 1/8" past the mark, you have left it too long, and the sprockets (at least the favorite ones) will be too badly worn. If you replace a chain at the 1/8" point, without replacing the sprockets, it may run OK and not skip, but the worn sprockets will cause the new chain to wear much faster than it should, until it catches up with the wear state of the sprockets.

    If the rivet is past the 1/8" mark, a new chain will almost certainly skip on the worn sprockets, especially the smaller ones
    .
    The mark he refers to is a 12 inch mark.

    Contrary to yours and several other's belief that all LBS employees are nosepicking idiots and pick pockets, in my shop we give customers all the options and possibilities we can. It is part of my own shop philosophy to maximize the life of all components whenever possible.

    That said, if Old Gammy Leg came into my shop and the chain showed little or no stretch, I would tell him he's good to go. No new chain needed. But I would also check the cassette for wear just to be safe. AND I would do it at no charge. More often than not, by the time a customer decides they have a problem, the chain is over a link stretched and the cassette is toast.

    Over the years I have discovered that hard and fast rules do not apply in the cycling world. Mileage on a chain is a good benchmark to check for wear, but not the final answer. As pointed out earlier, measuring is the only definitive way to tell. Personally I get well over 2000 miles on my road bike chains. My old Lotus may be approaching 4000. I am not sure. It's showing enough wear now though I will have to change the cassette if I decide to change out the chain. But it's in semi retirement now and gets little use. My newer roadbike, a custom build, is pushing 3000 miles on the original chain. It has hardly any stretch at this point. But I am a spinner, or maybe just a wimp. The bigger guys I ride with can toast a chain and cassette in 1000 to 1500 miles. On my mountain bike, it is a different story. Usually at least a new chain and cassette every season. I like to climb the tough technical climbs. They are brutal on chains.
    Keep it 'tween the ditches

    My Blog - Lost in the Bo Zone

  9. #9
    Senior Member sydney's Avatar
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    ^^^^... Yeah, old sydney knows all that. Is someone a little slow today or was that some extra good carpet?

  10. #10
    Senior Member capwater's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sydney
    You forgot to say to have them also replace the cassette with the most expensivve one they have,because chains and cassettes 'wear together'. Any carpet smoking muppet should know that.
    And you neglected to add both chain rings even though you only use the 39 once a month. Carpet Smoking Muppets ... sounds like the name of a good punk band from Cleveland.

  11. #11
    Recovering Retro-grouch CRUM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sydney
    ^^^^... Yeah, old sydney knows all that. Is someone a little slow today or was that some extra good carpet?
    Yeah, well I thought old sydney was picking his nose and forgot for a moment.
    Keep it 'tween the ditches

    My Blog - Lost in the Bo Zone

  12. #12
    Cyclist Old Gammy Leg's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice....

    I'm surprised it hasn't stretched even slightly yet.... I can however see a little play in the rollers, so maybe I'll let it get to 3000 and change it. I'd rather discard a chain with a bit of life left in it than either wear my sprockets out or, worse, have the chain break while riding.

  13. #13
    Year-round cyclist
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    Depends where he lives, how he pedals, his maintenance schedule and whether or not his bike has fenders.

    I generally do 7 000 – 10 000 km with a chain. I ride year round, but I don't push hard on pedals and have full fenders with mudflaps that keep the drivetrain free of road grime.
    Michel Gagnon
    Montréal (Québec, Canada)

  14. #14
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Somebody needs to make a sealed O-ring chain for bikes. I get over 15,000 miles out of one on my motorcycle...

  15. #15
    Senior Member Lt.Gustl's Avatar
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    O rings add a little more friction, race bikes will sometimes run plain chains for that reason, the best for chain life is a sealed housing, but only works on hub geared and fixed bicycles, I think yamaha briefly sold a MC that had a sealed final drive w/ the chain lubed in graphite in the early eighties, but people ignorantly pulled the cover off to make the chain easier to lube.

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