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  1. #1
    New Orleans
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    9 speed chain-5 speed freewheel?

    A quick question.Why will a 9 speed chain not work on a 5 speed freewheel?It fits over the cogs just fine.
    My 5 speed chain has narrow openings of .100,wide openings of .180-the 5 speed cogs are about .075 thick.The 9 speed chain has narrow openings of .085" wide about .165".There would be just .010" of clearance on the cogs-is that the problem?
    When I just drape the 9 speed chain over the cogs,it seems fine.Of course,shifting will probably be something else.
    Why would I bother?It would be nice to just have to fool with one size chain.Thanks.Charlie

  2. #2
    Curmudgeon Wil Davis's Avatar
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    Aug 2005
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    Nausea, New Hamster
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    (see http://wildavis.smugmug.com/Bikes) Bianchi Veloce (2005), Nishiki Cascade (1992), Schwinn Super Sport (1983)
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    I've used what is listed as an 8-speed chain (Shimano IG90) on 5, 6, and 7-speed cassettes - it works perfectly in all cases. I've never tried with a 9 - perhaps it's all in The Marketing

    - Wil
    "" - Marcel Marceau

  3. #3
    New Orleans
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    Will-thanks for the info-glad to hear it worked.I don't think the 8 speed has much narrower "openings" than the 9 speed.
    I think the new 9 speed might have better shaped plates than the 25 year old 5 speed chains I use now.Thanks.Charlie

  4. #4
    You know you want to. Eatadonut's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    Norman, Oklahoma
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    Pinarello Prince, 1980's 531 steel fixie commuter, FrankenMTB
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    9-speed chain will work on older cassette. If you've got the parts laying around, go for it. Otherwise, 8-speed chains are a little cheaper usually, go that route.
    Weather today: Hot. Humid. Potholes.

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