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  1. #1
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    Secret of the SRAM PowerLink removal...

    Ok, apparently everyone knows the trick but me. That or I have really bad luck getting chains where the powerlink is just deformed enough to make it really friggin HARD to seperate. Which somehow I doubt.

    I put a brand new SRAM PC-58 chain on my bike yesterday and soon decided that it would probably be best if I shortened the thing by a link or two. No problem, new chain, had it around the block once or twice, time to work that Power Link magic... instead I'm fiddling with the thing for 5 minutes getting my hands dirty all over again without any luck at all. I had the link on the bottom side of the loop and tried, then on the topside of the loop, then I completely removed the chain fron the crank to remove all pressure what so ever. Each time the link bent into a Z shape instead of releasing no matter how hard I tried to keep it straight to disengage the link.

    So... what am I doing wrong here folks?

  2. #2
    mousse de chocolat Moose's Avatar
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    If we tell you...we will have to kill you.
    Last edited by Moose; 11-25-05 at 08:29 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Jameson's Avatar
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    I remove my gold powerlink at least once a week for chain cleaning, I've heard if they are left on for long periods and not fastidiously cleaned they can be a b**ch to remove. I have NEVER had a problem removing mine, because I take it off so often. Remove yours by any means and purchase a new one. Thats all i got.

  4. #4
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    Having no experience with SRAM chains doesn't keep me from offering advice. As I understand the procedure, SRAM's powerlink is best removed by pressing the sideplates toward each other firmly while pushing the chain in lengthwise to separate the two halves.

  5. #5
    Compulsive Upgrader cyclingshane73's Avatar
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    You have to press down on the links and then slide them apart. Hold the plates between your index finger and thumb and squeeze. If you just try to push them apart without squeezing them together you can shove until you are blue in the face. It takes some practice, however I can remove mine no problems what-so-ever.
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  6. #6
    The Red Lantern Rev.Chuck's Avatar
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    To make it easier, bend a piece of stiff wire(old spoke) into a Squared off "U" with the open ends closed in a little. You can hook this on either side of the link to give you some working slack. You should be able to push it apart with your fingers now. If not take a pair of pliers and set them in the wide position, then "Z" the chain so the link is the "/" of the "Z" You can now push the opposing plates with the pliers angled so each jaw only touches the outer plate.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member Nessism's Avatar
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    The side plates have a slot with round hole on one end. The pins insert into the hole end of the slot and chain tension forces the pin into the other end of the slot where it can't come out.

    To remove, you must first push the links together and get the pins to move back toward the hole end of the slot. It helps to pinch the side plates together a little while pushing the links together to get the link to slide toward the hole. Once the pin is in the hole end of the slot the link can be pulled apart.
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  8. #8
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips! I'll go give it another try here shortly.

  9. #9
    ride, paint, ride simplify's Avatar
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    Cuda, I have found that the silver Powerlink is MUCH more difficult to open when new, than the *gold* powerlink that comes on narrower (9-speed) chains. We have both in our house, and I struggled forEVER to get the silver ones open on my PC-68 chains, whereas the gold link on my husband's PC-69's opened in *seconds*. It was so frustrating. I had to use a system like Rev. Chuck recommends plus some tools to get the silver link open, but the gold link opened easily with just light finger pressure. But now, after months of removing the link each week or two for chain maintenance, those silver Powerlinks open easily too, maybe because I'm getting better at the technique, I'm not sure. The gold ones were easy to open from day one, but not the silver ones. I think that one mistake I made early on was squeezing the plates together TOO hard, to release the pins. You need to squeeze the plates together, but if you squeeze them too hard, they will bind against the rollers and the pins won't want to move toward each other. Hope this helps.

  10. #10
    Macaws Rock! michaelnel's Avatar
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    I just removed my SRAM 9 speed PowerLink this morning to clean my drivetrain, and it was really easy. Shoot a little WD40 on the link while working it back and forth a little to expel the grit, then it comes right apart easily.

    BTW, I took off my cassette too and cleaned everything in a mix of Simple Green, dish detergent and water and scrubbed all the dirt off with a toothbrush. Now it is all spic and also span, but now my teeth are all black and I can't get the taste out of my mouth!
    Last edited by michaelnel; 11-25-05 at 10:20 AM.
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  11. #11
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lawkd
    Cuda, I have found that the silver Powerlink is MUCH more difficult to open when new, than the *gold* powerlink that comes on narrower (9-speed) chains. We have both in our house, and I struggled forEVER to get the silver ones open on my PC-68 chains, whereas the gold link on my husband's PC-69's opened in *seconds*. It was so frustrating. I had to use a system like Rev. Chuck recommends plus some tools to get the silver link open, but the gold link opened easily with just light finger pressure. But now, after months of removing the link each week or two for chain maintenance, those silver Powerlinks open easily too, maybe because I'm getting better at the technique, I'm not sure. The gold ones were easy to open from day one, but not the silver ones. I think that one mistake I made early on was squeezing the plates together TOO hard, to release the pins. You need to squeeze the plates together, but if you squeeze them too hard, they will bind against the rollers and the pins won't want to move toward each other. Hope this helps.
    This may explain why my friend Ryan keeps going on and on how he can't figure out why I'm having so much trouble with my power link when his is so easy. He's got the 9speed chain.

  12. #12
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    Cuda2K, We recently had a similiar post that was initiated by FarHorizen. Based on a comment I made, we received a response from Thrifty1 who said they use a Park Master Link pliers (MLP-1). I have not purchased this unit, but since I have the same problem you have, I plan to. It took me five minutes and two raw fingers to remove my power link yesterday, and I take this chain apart for cleaning about once a month. I don't know how those who remove these links easily do it but I can't. Hope this helps.
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  13. #13
    Perineal Pressurized dobber's Avatar
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    This is Africa, 1943. War spits out its violence overhead and the sandy graveyard swallows it up. Her name is King Nine, B-25, medium bomber, Twelfth Air Force. On a hot, still morning she took off from Tunisia to bomb the southern tip of Italy. An errant piece of flak tore a hole in a wing tank and, like a wounded bird, this is where she landed, not to return on this day, or any other day.

  14. #14
    Bike Junkie roccobike's Avatar
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    I tried removing a SRAM pin using my Topeak mulit-tool. I pulled the pin and separated the link OK, but when I put the pin back in using the Topeak, I had a stuck link. It was so severe, that I had to use a screwdriver to spread the link to make it flexible again. Another forum member uses a Park Chain Tool and claimed he has not had this problem and the Park tool is not the same as the Topeak.
    I've had Shimano links that were a little stiff on re-assembly, but all it took to loosen them was to move the link side to side to a few times. I will not pull another SRAM pin unless it is to remove links from a new chain.
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  15. #15
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by roccobike
    I tried removing a SRAM pin using my Topeak mulit-tool. I pulled the pin and separated the link OK, but when I put the pin back in using the Topeak, I had a stuck link. It was so severe, that I had to use a screwdriver to spread the link to make it flexible again. Another forum member uses a Park Chain Tool and claimed he has not had this problem and the Park tool is not the same as the Topeak.
    I've had Shimano links that were a little stiff on re-assembly, but all it took to loosen them was to move the link side to side to a few times. I will not pull another SRAM pin unless it is to remove links from a new chain.
    I had a quite stiff link on my old SRAM chain when I shortened it without using the powerlink. Finally took it by my LBS and the guy grabbed the chain about 2 or 3 links on either side of the stiff one and flexed it a good 3 or 4 inches (as much as it probably could flex) in each direction about five times. Fixed it right up. I felt stupid.

  16. #16
    The Red Lantern Rev.Chuck's Avatar
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    That is not a reason to feel stupid, anymore than not being able to resize an image is.(I don't know how to do that )
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  17. #17
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    hehe. I have a handy image resizing program that I run all of my digital photos through before uploading them to link on my website or anywhere. 600 max on both dimentions. Saves bandwidth and headaches. (Easy Thumbnails)

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by cuda2k
    Ok, apparently everyone knows the trick but me. That or I have really bad luck getting chains where the powerlink is just deformed enough to make it really friggin HARD to seperate.
    I grab a portion of the chain, with the Powerlink inside, with the Chain Compressor:

    http://www.biketoolsetc.com/index.cg...item_id=YC-207

    I first made such a tool myself by bending ends of a spring I've got in a hardware store, but then added the larger, more forgiving, spring above to some order. This Compressor is also handy when straightening deformed links. It is available from other retailers too.

  19. #19
    Killing Rabbits
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rev.Chuck
    That is not a reason to feel stupid, anymore than not being able to resize an image is.(I don't know how to do that )
    In microsoft paint (XP) use the image toolbar then select attributes and choose the new size. Paint is cheap as it gets.

  20. #20
    jur
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    I understand SRAM loinks are similar to KMC links. I struggled until blue in the fcae, then came up with this solution:

    Bend a piece of wire (spoke thickness) into a U, 3"x1/2", with the jaws of the U bent towards each other, with the radius of a roller. Hook the U's bent jaws in on either side of the link with the rest of the chain in a U. The wire jaws rest on top of the rollers. With a pair of pliers, squeeze the rollers towards each other on the U wire jaws - the wire allows pressure on the link mechanism instead of the link side plates. Pop and the link is loose.
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  21. #21
    Senior Member Silverexpress's Avatar
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    Maybe you can use a small pair of needle nose pliers with the bent tips to squeeze together the rollers at the power link. I'm pretty sure SEARS sells all sorts of sizes, and lengths of needle nose pliers, and one that will easily fit inside the chain.

    So basically, you squeeze the plates together, and then take the needle nose pliers and pop the rollers inwards to free them from the plates.

    Have yet to try it.
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  22. #22
    Trail Rider
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    Park Tools makes a special set of pliers (tool #MLP-1) that works great on any master link. The pliers cost about $15-$17, but they are worth every penny. I struggled like you until I bought this tool, now removing master links is a breeze. Like all Park products, the tool is well made and durable -- it will last you a lifetime. I highly recommend that you buy one.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    I'm happy to find out that I'm not the only one that has trouble with those links.

  24. #24
    Unique Vintage Steel cuda2k's Avatar
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    I'm going to give it another go tomorrow before I get my first lengthy ride in on my new bike. I adjusted the saddle and the derailleurs a bit this afternoon and I think she's ready for more than a once around the block.

  25. #25
    Emondafied cydewaze's Avatar
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    Sorry, I missed this thread.

    I've found this link helpful in removing powerlinks: http://www.execulink.com/~dtierney/wmc/SRAM/chains2.htm

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