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Thread: New Chain

  1. #1
    Destroyer of Worlds kyledr's Avatar
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    New Chain

    Seems I need a new chain. I have a Colnago Super w/ an early 80s campy super record rear der no front der. 2 chainrings and 5 speed freewheel = 10 gears. I can't figure out what chain to get. Ideally I can pick from these because I get a deal on them: http://freewheelbike.com/page.cfm?Pa...=items%2Eprice

    Does the KMC z50 work? It says 6-8.

    If nothing there works for cheap, is there something on the net I should try?

    Thanks

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    sram pc 68 is a very high quality chain that will work nicely. want cheaper? the sram pc 48 is only 20 bucks... any good shop should have them or be able to get them quickly.

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    Nashbar has inexpensive good quality chains.
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    i hate nashbar. hows that for intolerance. they suck the lifeblood out of local bike shops. nashbar is nothing more than the walmart of the bike world. support your local shop. a sram pc 48 chain is 20 bucks for crying out loud, and it shifts flawlessly. not to mention its well made, stronger than a shimano of a similar price. and its not made in vietnam or singapore.

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    Senior Member masi61's Avatar
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    +1 on the PC-68 SRAM. These run about $28 but its a really good quality chain that works for 6-7-8 speed rears cassettes/freewheels. I wasn't overly impressed with the basic KMC "Z" chain I recently ran on my touring bike, it flexed so much sideways that it was difficult to shift into the small chainring on my triple touring rig. There are some vendors on ebay selling Taya chains pretty cheap, I think they are good quality and my work well for applications where a slightly wider 5/6 speed chain is in order.

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    Destroyer of Worlds kyledr's Avatar
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    But I don't have a 6 7 or 8 speed rear cassette/freewheel, and that's why I'm confused. I have a 5 speed freewheel with two speeds on the chainwheel adding up to ten total speeds.

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    disregard what you've heard about 8 speed chains not working on 5 speed drive trains. they work great. i've done 3 drivetrain restorations and used sram 8 speed chains on each, and they worked beautifully, far better than the original chains.

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    Destroyer of Worlds kyledr's Avatar
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    Okay, I'll go with sram then. Should I remove links to get better tension or will it be ok as is?

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    rebmeM roineS JanMM's Avatar
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    you're right that 2x5=10 but a "10 speed" chain is for a cassette with 10 cogs. 8- or 9- or whatever-speed chains should be about the same length, but narrower or wider depending on the type of cassette it would be used with. As ridelugs said, an 8-speed, which may be the most-widely-available high-quality chain, should work fine with your bike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by masi61
    +1 on the PC-68 SRAM. These run about $28 but its a really good quality chain that works for 6-7-8 speed rears cassettes/freewheels. I wasn't overly impressed with the basic KMC "Z" chain I recently ran on my touring bike, it flexed so much sideways that it was difficult to shift into the small chainring on my triple touring rig. There are some vendors on ebay selling Taya chains pretty cheap, I think they are good quality and my work well for applications where a slightly wider 5/6 speed chain is in order.
    I've used that 'Z' chain, too. It's crap. It also doesn't wear well, runs noisily unless you lube it religiously... bleh. I switch to the SRAM PC-58 and never looked back!

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    I have a chain that fits loosley on the large chain wheel and the small cog in the cogset new chain?

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    You need to remove links when you install the chain. There are a number of different methods for figuring out the correct number of links to keep. The easiest thing to do is to put the chain around the largest cog in the front and the largest in the back (don't run it through the derailleur), and bring the ends together. You should keep enough links that the ends overlap by one complete link.

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    I'd avoid the PC-48 as I've had two of them crack around the pins and break. The PC-68 on the other hand is a fine chain.

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    Destroyer of Worlds kyledr's Avatar
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    Sounds good. I'll go for the 68 then. I did read sheldon's article on chian link removal, but that whole largest largest thing with one link overlap makes no sense to me. If it's only got one link extra, once it's run through the derailleur won't it not have enough slack to make it on the biggest combo? Or am I just picturing it wrong, and it actually takes less slakc to run it through the der?

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    Just make it the same number of links as your existing chain and be done with it. Sheldon's method does work, BTW. The man knows what he is talking about.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryanparrish
    I have a chain that fits loosley on the large chain wheel and the small cog in the cogset new chain?
    Maybe, maybe not. You might just need to remove some links, to get the right chain length, if this is a new chain. To tell if you need to replace the chain, measure with a chain gauge to see if it has lengthened due to wear. If you don't have a chain gauge, use a ruler, and use it to measure against the side of the chain. Measure with the edge of one of the chain link pins right on the "0" mark of the ruler, and then see if the 12-inch mark lines up the same way with a pin. If the nearest pin is more than 1/8" beyond the 12-inch mark, your chain has lengthened too much and should be replaced. You can have this verified at your local bike shop.

    If your chain is not worn, and your chain length is correct, then your derailleur spring may not be strong enough to take up the slack any more.

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    I have used Sheldon's method several time (it is also suggested by Lennard Zinn in his book), and it always seems to yield the correct length chain.

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    cyclist/gearhead/cycli... moxfyre's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ridelugs
    i hate nashbar. hows that for intolerance. they suck the lifeblood out of local bike shops. nashbar is nothing more than the walmart of the bike world. support your local shop. a sram pc 48 chain is 20 bucks for crying out loud, and it shifts flawlessly. not to mention its well made, stronger than a shimano of a similar price. and its not made in vietnam or singapore.
    Wow, that's a lot of misplaced anger, in my opinion...

    Your hated Nashbar often carries the SRAM chains, and sells the PC-58 for about $10 typically Also, the Nashbar-branded chains are actually made KMC (it's stamped on the links), which makes their chains in Taiwan. SRAM chains are made in Taiwan as well, I believe.

    It seems like a vast range of bike parts are made in Taiwan these days, except for very low-end (China) or high-end (USA, Europe, or Japan). Taiwan is a democracy and, in my "freedom loving" opinion, a country and economy very much worth supporting. The main reason they dominate the bike industry is because they do good work at a good price. All the Nashbar metal products I've looked at are made in Taiwan; chains, pedals, cables, tires, lights, etc. Their panniers are made in Mexico, I believe, and their water bottles are made here in the USA (and have the Specialized logo stamped into them).

    Nashbar certainly takes business away from LBSes everywhere. But they do a LOT more than that. I wouldn't have nearly as much bike stuff, or nearly as much fun with it, if it weren't for Nashbar and Performance and the used market. Hell, I might never have gotten into repairing and tinkering with bikes at all, since it would be unaffordable. Nashbar will sell me a wheelset for $100 while the big, well-known LBS in town will tell me they can special-order it for $250. As a bonus, one of their mechanics rolls his eyes at me and makes disparaging comments about how I waste his time asking about low-end junk. Nashbar seems to recognize that people who like to do-it-themselves often don't have that much money to spend, so instead of stocking Dura Ace and Campy Record, they have lots of 105, LX, XT, Centaur stuff. They also do a really good job of finding generic products to put their name on, I think. They dig up 1" suspension forks for folks looking to upgrade their aging MTB, JIS headsets, the best red blinkie light I've found, good cheap clipless pedals, and some very nice cantilever brakes. (My reviews of some Nashbar-brand products here: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?p=2876112)

    So Nashbar may be putting some LBS out of business if they fail to adapt, but it's ALLOWING a lot more folks to afford a customized bike that they'll enjoy riding a lot. The big LBS here seems to make all their money on 40-something professionals who bring their Cannondale in on a roof rack and care deeply about the color of their hubs, and that totally leaves me out in the cold. Frankly, I'm a big Nashbar fan I also like Harris Cyclery, which is Sheldon Brown's shop. Despite the fact that they're located in Massachusetts, they have excellent prices on a lot of things like wheelsets, and they seem to pick and choose their online products carefully to find the ones that are a good value for DIY types.
    Last edited by moxfyre; 08-17-06 at 10:46 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by moxfyre
    Wow, that's a lot of misplaced anger, in my opinion...

    Your hated Nashbar often carries the SRAM chains, and sells the PC-58 for about $10 typically Also, the Nashbar-branded chains are actually made KMC (it's stamped on the links), which makes their chains in Taiwan. SRAM chains are made in Taiwan as well, I believe.

    It seems like a vast range of bike parts are made in Taiwan these days, except for very low-end (China) or high-end (USA, Europe, or Japan). Taiwan is a democracy and, in my "freedom loving" opinion, a country and economy very much worth supporting. The main reason they dominate the bike industry is because they do good work at a good price. All the Nashbar metal products I've looked at are made in Taiwan; chains, pedals, cables, tires, lights, etc. Their panniers are made in Mexico, I believe, and their water bottles are made here in the USA (and have the Specialized logo stamped into them).

    Nashbar certainly takes business away from LBSes everywhere. But they do a LOT more than that. I wouldn't have nearly as much bike stuff, or nearly as much fun with it, if it weren't for Nashbar and Performance and the used market. Hell, I might never have gotten into repairing and tinkering with bikes at all, since it would be unaffordable. Nashbar will sell me a wheelset for $100 while the big, well-known LBS in town will tell me they can special-order it for $250. As a bonus, one of their mechanics rolls his eyes at me and makes disparaging comments about how I waste his time asking about low-end junk. Nashbar seems to recognize that people who like to do-it-themselves often don't have that much money to spend, so instead of stocking Dura Ace and Campy Record, they have lots of 105, LX, XT, Centaur stuff. They also do a really good job of finding generic products to put their name on, I think. They dig up 1" suspension forks for folks looking to upgrade their aging MTB, JIS headsets, the best red blinkie light I've found, good cheap clipless pedals, and some very nice cantilever brakes. (My reviews of some Nashbar-brand products here: http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?p=2876112)

    So Nashbar may be putting some LBS out of business if they fail to adapt, but it's ALLOWING a lot more folks to afford a customized bike that they'll enjoy riding a lot. The big LBS here seems to make all their money on 40-something professionals who bring their Cannondale in on a roof rack and care deeply about the color of their hubs, and that totally leaves me out in the cold. Frankly, I'm a big Nashbar fan I also like Harris Cyclery, which is Sheldon Brown's shop. Despite the fact that they're located in Massachusetts, they have excellent prices on a lot of things like wheelsets, and they seem to pick and choose their online products carefully to find the ones that are a good value for DIY types.
    nashbar makes thier money, as does supergo, like this: trek buys 5000 wheelsets from taiwan, knowing they will only use 4000 of them. but 5000 is where they get the break, ie the cheaper price. they then strip the bontrager stickers off, or never have the put on, and call up supergo, who buys the remaining 1000 at OEM pricing, which is way under wholesaler's wholesale. they then sell the wheelsets for a very affordable price, more or less at wholesale, to the rabid public. this isnt what walmart does. its not quite as evil. walmart forces companies to sell to them at whatever price they dictate and thats that.
    nashbar can afford to sell even things like derailluers at mere dollars over cost, because they dont have tons of storefronts. 50 guys can run a huge operation. the sram pc 48 chain costs a bike shop 8.5 to buy, if they buy in bulk, (50) without boxes, so lets see, thats 425 dollars just for one type of chain. thats alot of money in product thats not guarenteed to sell right away. then you have all the other 8 spd chains you have to have at least a few of, the 9 speed chains, the track chains, the bmx chains, the 10 spd chains, and soon, very soon, in chains alone, you have almost 1000 dollars just in chains, lying around, because you have to have them in stock. you have to pay for storage space. all storage space is space not used to sell stuff.
    the affordability issue is a real one, but fault does not lie with the local bike shop. they do what they can with what they are given. you said: "I wouldn't have nearly as much bike stuff, or nearly as much fun with it, if it weren't for Nashbar and Performance and the used market." this basically is a statement saying i'm only happy with lots of stuff. thats kind of misguided. or at least a bit glutonous, dont you think? your implying that quantity matters over quality, and that having lots of taiwanese stuff is better than having a few things that work well.
    i'm all for custom bikes. thats all i own. i'm all about quality, and i dont even hate taiwan products as much as i should. i love japanese products. (er not new shimano bits) so its not like i am saying screw nashbar cause they sell taiwanese stuff. i'm saying screw nashbar cause if you dont give them your buisness, someone else will, but if you dont give your local shop buisness, no one else might. maybe you only have one local shop. that sucks then. support harris. they are a family owned shop. great. but local shops are run by local people with big stakes on the line. when most shops fold, the owners loose everything. cars, houses, they have to literally hide from creditors to avoid having thier ipods taken. its not wonder they are pissy sometimes. some days they are literally at the poor houses' door. if they screw up on a bike order, say the rep told them the colour purple was the hit for womens hybrids, they ordered 6, only six! and now they are sitting on 1800 dollars worth of big stuff they cant even push out the door. they would try to sell those for 600, at a 50% margin, while nashbar goes and buys the other ones up, after the maker can sell them, for 150 dollars a piece, and sells them at 250, 50 bucks less than it costs the shop to get them in the first place.
    you see, its not a question of adaption. what needs adaptation is the buyers attitude. just like people thrived before the cell fone, people could still enjoy cycling without the internet and mail order catalogues. its a fact.

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    Interesting debate that my need its own thread...

    But you guys are arguing the realities of the fabled Al Gore "new economy." Reality: giants (Nashbar) will exist to satisfy demand as will more thrifty and swift lbs (Harris--god willing! and my lbs). You both are examples of savy consumers each purchasing with clear intent rather than for consumption for its own sake (Walmart). The cycling marketplace it is still a niche thus divided into price category (I don't own a Lemond or Campy anything but mid market products instead). A logical solution to such a competative market would be to increase participation by increasing the number of cycling consumers...thus the unlucky lbs may close (sucks?...not in all cases!) but other more aggressive, savy and slick lbs (with a website!) will maintain and thrive within a one niche while the huge (Nashbar) may serve to lure the price concious newbie in another.

    High road economic development does not really fit into this market because of its size...even nashbar is re "small" (50 employees?= 6-7 decent sized shops?). And while a store may close, most likley it will not close because of larger online retailers but because of the extant local market and the minimal demand of the consumers. (Demand is never "wrong", only the supply-side responce to it can be!). Remember the number of choices that a retailer has at their disposal and the number of mistakes or incorrect assumptions one can make. It is a shops responsibility to maintain customers; cycling is such a narrow market that we go to the same store, the same wrench guy, the same routes...unless there is a problem.

    And remember, while 20 years ago we all could have had this debate...I doubt any or us would be willing to drop the $ on a phone bill, or wait for the local post to deliver a reply. I know that I waited a whole 10 days for a special order (online) part to come in from Cali...so my lbs could finish the work I asked them to do...

    Ultimately, consumer choice reflects personal values and both of yours are valid, as are the means to satisfy both sets of demands short of murder or war...apples and oranges. At least we use a minimal amount of petroleum based products...
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    well argued slim. i argue from more or less purely an artistic, humanistic side, with disregard for real work economics, thats for sure. but rivendell doesnt exsist by following any real work economic plan, and i feel, nor do i.

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    cyclist/gearhead/cycli... moxfyre's Avatar
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    Agreed, many good points, slim77.

    I still feel that I don't have any innate "obligation" to support an indifferent local LBS, nor do they have any good excuse for ignoring my market segment. I have requirements for service, price, and selection that may be different from many other customers; if the LBS doesn't satisfy them, I'll take my business elsewhere

    My goal in buying lots of bike stuff is NOT to get quantity over quality. I don't think I'm being a glutton. Rather, I'm being a hobbyist! I enjoy building and refurbishing bikes, and trying new kinds: lower prices means I can enjoy my hobby more. Also, I don't think that just because parts are less expensive and made-in-Taiwan means that they are low quality. For example, you know that the $400 Phil Wood cassette hub is going to be superb, but the $40 IRO track hub (made in Taiwan) is also a really fine product... perhaps the best-reviewed fixed gear hub out there, and the one-man IRO business based in NYC has *awesome* customer service! Finding good quality for a low price is part of the hobby too.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ridelugs
    nashbar makes thier money, as does supergo, like this: trek buys 5000 wheelsets from taiwan, knowing they will only use 4000 of them. but 5000 is where they get the break, ie the cheaper price. they then strip the bontrager stickers off, or never have the put on, and call up supergo, who buys the remaining 1000 at OEM pricing, which is way under wholesaler's wholesale. they then sell the wheelsets for a very affordable price, more or less at wholesale, to the rabid public. this isnt what walmart does. its not quite as evil. walmart forces companies to sell to them at whatever price they dictate and thats that.
    Sounds to me like you should be mad at Trek, not at Nashbar. Nashbar has an opportunity to get wheels cheaper and they take it. Sounds like sound business to me.

    Walmart doesn't force anybody to sell anything to them. Selling to Walmart is completely optional for every vendor or potential vendor.

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    Senior Member slim_77's Avatar
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    Thanks for the compliments. I know you guys are always worth reading...

    My problem: deciding between "realistically human" or a "realistic humanist" (I'll let you know how the exieriment is going)

    keep on purchasing!
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    Quote Originally Posted by fmw
    Sounds to me like you should be mad at Trek, not at Nashbar. Nashbar has an opportunity to get wheels cheaper and they take it. Sounds like sound business to me.

    Walmart doesn't force anybody to sell anything to them. Selling to Walmart is completely optional for every vendor or potential vendor.
    economic cooersion is very real and especially with walmart...don't underestimate the power of the Waltons.

    FMW, this is true, but the only real moral question is from whom YOU choose to buy...demand drives retail; this is the invisible hand that controls the market. Because some people think walmart/nashbar are great: they exist and will so as long as they are competative; because some perfer the lbs, they will exist as long as they are competative. Wrong does not really apply in the argument, instead it is a matter of preference and both Moxfyre and Ridelugs made great arguments for their positions...

    The market place is huge and for cycling related products there is room potentially for enormous growth...so, the more cyclists the less nashbar and my lbs will be in competition...(in an ideal world).
    gravity: it's not just a good idea, it's the law.

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