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Old 08-02-07, 10:54 PM   #1
bfromcolo
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chain tool idiocy....

I experienced my first broken chain the other day. One of the outer plates popped off the rivet and made a horrible racket when it went through the rear derailler. Thankfully it didn't completely fail or I no doubt would have eaten the top bar on a very hilly ride. Post incident analysis revealed that the failure occurred where I had rejoined the chain to add a few links for a larger freewheel, so it was a link that had been removed and reattached, by me. There was also some bulging of the area around the hole in the outer plate. I can only deduce that I screwed up putting this link back together and caused the deformity by not having everything perfectly aligned when I put the chain back together. I figured better safe than sorry and replaced the link that failed, but it took me three tries to get the stupid thing back together without causing some deformity around the hole where the pin goes into the outer plate. Is there some trick to getting the holes and plates and pins aligned correctly that I am missing? It seems like every chain has a little variance in the shape of the outer plates, maybe this one just doesn't fit my chain tool correctly? I bet I have done this a couple dozen times without a problem, but this particular chain is being difficult.
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Old 08-02-07, 11:27 PM   #2
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What kind of chain are you using? Some brands (i.e. Shimano 8/9/10 speed) advise against reusing pins and sell self-guided break-off pins instead. PIA if you ask me, and when I was 120 lb I reused pins all the time without fail, but now that I am heavier and put more strain on the drivetrain, I follow the rules.
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Old 08-02-07, 11:40 PM   #3
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Pretty much all modern chains are not meant to be broken and pressed together again.

Shimano has their proprietary pins, other manufacturers use various master links, but all of them are an attempt to keep the peened pins on the chain intact. Break the chain once to size it, apply the master link or pin and that's it. If the chain breaks, needs to be resized or wears out, you buy a new one and start over...or add another master link or pin.

I do miss the old days of being able to break a chain and reinstall it, but considering it's about $15 to replace a chain, that's cheaper than destroying a rear derailleur or the medical bills for a chainring peircing.

Don't doubt your skills man. I'm sure you did a good job...the chains are just designed for planned obsolescence.
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Old 08-03-07, 12:04 AM   #4
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Sach Sedis chains are the only chains that the pins can pressed out and re-pressed in, unlike the poor quality shimano chains that force you to buy a new pin every time you disassemble the chain (weekly for some of us).
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Old 08-03-07, 01:10 AM   #5
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Why does that make them poor quality? And why on earth do you need to break your chain every week?!
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Old 08-03-07, 01:10 AM   #6
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Sach Sedis chains are the only chains that the pins can pressed out and re-pressed in, unlike the poor quality shimano chains that force you to buy a new pin every time you disassemble the chain (weekly for some of us).
the sachs sedis chains had a link with a softer sideplate, which was where you broke and reconnected the chain. i used sachs sedis chains for years and thousands and thousands of miles and regularly broke my chain to clean it.

never had a problem.

i recently has a SRAM quick link partially pop open after crossing some RR tracks. not sure what that was all about but i did replace the quick link just in case.

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Old 08-03-07, 01:54 AM   #7
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Why does that make them poor quality? And why on earth do you need to break your chain every week?!

what makes Shimano poor quality: planned obselesence, by needing a new pin every time you break the chain for removal or immersion cleaning. The Sach Sedis chains can be broke and reassembled without needing a new pin every time. Try being 500 kms from the nearest bike shop, and you have used up you last shimano pin......(ie: broken chain from too much torque, repairs etc). You will never go back to shimano after that.


why do i break apart my chain every week? Because i have a carburator dip tank with carb cleaner, and nothing cleans a chain better than a nice soak in carb cleaner. Its a weekly ritual, over cold beers and loud music, along with a frame cleaning and wheel check, that i quite enjoy every week. Start the week with a chemically clean chain, lube it up and off i go, clean chain, clean and silent bike. i sometimes also change the gear ratio, depending on my mood, which require a longer or shorter chain
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Old 08-03-07, 06:35 AM   #8
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what makes Shimano poor quality: planned obselesence, by needing a new pin every time you break the chain for removal or immersion cleaning.
According to Shimano, you should never remove the chain for cleaning.

Ignore the manufacturers instructions and blame them when a problem results? That shows poor judgement, at the least.

Btw, as much of a PITA as replacement pins are, they are pretty cost effective. The cost of four pins is roughly equal the cost of a (stand-alone) quick link, so if you R&R the chain fewer than four times (entirely reasonable if you're not removing it for cleaning) you save $$.
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Old 08-03-07, 06:36 AM   #9
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i sometimes also change the gear ratio, depending on my mood, which require a longer or shorter chain
Wow, that's some ratio change!
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Old 08-03-07, 06:39 AM   #10
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This is slightly off-topic but, how often does a chain just plain old break on you? I just broke a chain that was only 3 weeks old and was fairly pissed that it broke so easily.
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Old 08-03-07, 07:00 AM   #11
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Never.


Except once where I apparently didn't seat the quick link properly and it came apart.
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Old 08-03-07, 07:20 AM   #12
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why do i break apart my chain every week? Because i have a carburator dip tank with carb cleaner, and nothing cleans a chain better than a nice soak in carb cleaner. Its a weekly ritual, over cold beers and loud music, along with a frame cleaning and wheel check, that i quite enjoy every week. Start the week with a chemically clean chain, lube it up and off i go, clean chain, clean and silent bike. i sometimes also change the gear ratio, depending on my mood, which require a longer or shorter chain
As a hobbyist nutcase of almost sixty years I can well relate to that. That's akin to bare-hand rubbing Danish oil on a favorite shotgun's stock once a week during a TV watching. Or a once every few weeks inventory of model rr brass detail parts on-hand. etc. Doesn't matter that I may not have bought anything new or used anything since the last inventory. The real object is just the fondling of the hobby object. Good therapy. Right-on Bushman
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Old 08-03-07, 10:49 AM   #13
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Fine, but what if the brass parts' manufacturer said, "Do not fondle — fondling causes corrosion," and you ignored it for your weekly fun. Perfectly justifiable. But...

Would you then announce that the parts were ****ty because they corroded? That's what Bushman is doing.
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Old 08-03-07, 10:57 AM   #14
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Is there a way to bulk purchase master links or some kind of one time connector link? $4 a crack is a bit steep and I am screwing with my bikes too much to replace chains all the time. Not to mention the last time I bought a Bell chain at Walmart the thing was a couple links too short for my application so I had to extend it from the start.

I still think I am screwing up with the chain tool though, the links I added were from an old 7 or 8 speed chain.

EDIT: disregard, I found 6-packs of KMC missing links online for $9, I guess thats cheap enough

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Old 08-03-07, 12:13 PM   #15
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Wow, that's some ratio change!

yes, yes it is. Sometimes on my SINGLESPEED i will swap out the 46 front for a 32, and the 16 rear cog for a 20, so i can hit the trails locally, instead of the nice flat roads everywhere else when i commute. It requires the removal of a few links. No biggie, takes seconds and i enjoy working on my bike.

now back to you BFROMCOLO
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Old 08-03-07, 02:20 PM   #16
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Oh, I'm not against quick links. I use Wipperman Connex on 9+speeds and KMC Missing Link on older chains. There are certainly legitimate reasons to R&R chains and in those cases Shimano is not the right chain. That doesn't make them a bad choice in all cases. I actually prefer that there's an alternative to reusing pins when a quick link isn't appropriate. For instance, when you have to lengthen a chain that already has a quick link...

Which reminds me. I have to go swap wheels for the century this weekend. Did a new one last weekend and left the 11-23 on it. No one told us that damn thing was half vertical!
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Old 08-03-07, 02:34 PM   #17
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As a hobbyist nutcase of almost sixty years I can well relate to that. That's akin to bare-hand rubbing Danish oil on a favorite shotgun's stock once a week during a TV watching. Or a once every few weeks inventory of model rr brass detail parts on-hand. etc. Doesn't matter that I may not have bought anything new or used anything since the last inventory. The real object is just the fondling of the hobby object. Good therapy. Right-on Bushman
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I like this analogy because gun enthusiasts know that over-care is one of the leading causes of wear in a firearm.

If you want to remove a chain on a regular basis use a master link. They work.
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Old 08-03-07, 02:39 PM   #18
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Pretty much all modern chains are not meant to be broken and pressed together again.

Shimano has their proprietary pins, other manufacturers use various master links, but all of them are an attempt to keep the peened pins on the chain intact. Break the chain once to size it, apply the master link or pin and that's it. If the chain breaks, needs to be resized or wears out, you buy a new one and start over...or add another master link or pin.
That being said... I've removed and reassembled pins from Shimano 7/8/9-speed, KMC 7/8-speed, and SRAM 7/8/9-speed chains. All without ill effects. I like the Master Links on KMC and SRAM chains a lot.

I was too cheap to buy replacement pins/master links, and have not had any trouble ever replacing the original links as long as I do it fairly carefully. Not sure how representative my experience is...
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Old 08-03-07, 05:21 PM   #19
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Pretty much all modern chains are not meant to be broken and pressed together again.

Shimano has their proprietary pins, other manufacturers use various master links, but all of them are an attempt to keep the peened pins on the chain intact. Break the chain once to size it, apply the master link or pin and that's it. If the chain breaks, needs to be resized or wears out, you buy a new one and start over...or add another master link or pin.

I do miss the old days of being able to break a chain and reinstall it, but considering it's about $15 to replace a chain, that's cheaper than destroying a rear derailleur or the medical bills for a chainring peircing.

Don't doubt your skills man. I'm sure you did a good job...the chains are just designed for planned obsolescence.
THIS is one of many reasons why i will NOT buy modern crap for my vintage road bikes. I've had my Regina Oros apart DOZENS of times and NEVER had a chain failure. In fact, my oldest Oro doesn't even have any measurable chain wear!
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Old 08-03-07, 05:26 PM   #20
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why do i break apart my chain every week? Because i have a carburator dip tank with carb cleaner, and nothing cleans a chain better than a nice soak in carb cleaner. Its a weekly ritual, over cold beers and loud music, along with a frame cleaning and wheel check, that i quite enjoy every week. Start the week with a chemically clean chain, lube it up and off i go, clean chain, clean and silent bike. i sometimes also change the gear ratio, depending on my mood, which require a longer or shorter chain
That's too funny - I wax my bike often but don't clean the chain weekly.

Any chain mfr (can we all say sh!tmano) that says not to break the chain to clean it is full of ***** IM(not so)HO
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Old 08-03-07, 05:28 PM   #21
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I like this analogy because gun enthusiasts know that over-care is one of the leading causes of wear in a firearm.
You can over do things. I only clean my AR-15 AFTER i use it. A quick apply of Break Free CLP on the bolt before use is all it needs to not jam in use...
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Old 08-03-07, 05:31 PM   #22
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This is slightly off-topic but, how often does a chain just plain old break on you? I just broke a chain that was only 3 weeks old and was fairly pissed that it broke so easily.
In 116,000 total miles and typically 5000 miles on a chain between replacements the number of breakages has been ZERO. All have been Shimano chains except for a couple of Sedis chains in the mid-80's and one Wipperman on a current bike.
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Old 08-03-07, 05:45 PM   #23
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In 116,000 total miles and typically 5000 miles on a chain between replacements the number of breakages has been ZERO. All have been Shimano chains except for a couple of Sedis chains in the mid-80's and one Wipperman on a current bike.

You didn't say sh!tmano!
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Old 08-03-07, 06:21 PM   #24
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my oldest Oro doesn't even have any measurable chain wear!
Yeah they'll do that if you never ride them.
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Old 08-03-07, 09:24 PM   #25
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[QUOTE=rmfnla;4995789]I like this analogy because gun enthusiasts know that over-care is one of the leading causes of wear in a firearm.
QUOTE]

Wasn't I specific enuf when I said, "That's akin to bare-hand rubbing Danish oil on a favorite shotgun's stock once a week during a TV watching." ?

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