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  1. #1
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    Opening KMC missing link?

    Am I a dunce or is there some secret to opening a KMC chain with a so called "missing link" or whatever?
    This is theoretically an 8 speed chain and probably one of the lower end chains. Has not really been used but I'm changing drive trains and thought it was supposed to be easy to open like the Wippermann chains. Does anyone have the secret to opening them or are they just meant to be an easy way to connect the chain and not really meant to be easy off and easy on. I talked to a mechanic at REI who says he hasn't figured out how to open them either and just uses a chain tool. Any help?
    Thanks

  2. #2
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    I think we've been through this on a previous thread. However, I did purchase a KMC "missing link" recently, only to notice after I had installed that the packet said that the link couldn't be opened, or words to that effect.

    Regards, Mark.

  3. #3
    I like bikes dr.raleigh's Avatar
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    I use my chain tool to push out a pin, and when I'm done I push it back in.
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  4. #4
    rebmeM roineS JanMM's Avatar
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    I am on my second Nashbar/KMC 8speed looong chain on my recumbent. The narrow, Z chain that is supposed to be ".. a snap" to open. Couldn't do it until I got a Park master link tool. Never a problem with SRAM links but the price of the KMC chains is irresistible.

  5. #5
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    FWIW, the newest KMC chain I own is a nine speed model, the "Nashbar nine speed chain by KMC." It comes with what is listed by Nashbar as a re-usable link. It looks virtually identical to a SRAM Power Link, and just like with SRAM links (8 or 9 speed) I've had absolutely no trouble removing or installing it, it can be easily done in a few seconds every time, by hand. I think there must be more than one type of "re-usable" KMC connector link out there. Every other KMC chain I've ever owned came with what I would call an old fashioned "master link," and those connectors are clearly not made to be removed by hand.
    Last edited by well biked; 12-02-07 at 08:53 PM.

  6. #6
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    Thank you for the information.

    Thanks for the responses. It is clear that I either have a chain that needs the Park tool to squeeze the link together or it is not made to open easily if at all. Will dig out the chain tool. I will at least assume the KMC chain can have the pin pressed back in, unlike the Shimano's.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dr.raleigh View Post
    I use my chain tool to push out a pin, and when I'm done I push it back in.
    That has not been an acceptable method for many years. Was good with 7 and some 8 speed systems back in the day.

  8. #8
    Death fork? Naaaah!! top506's Avatar
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    I've noticed that a light file pass on the inside 'snap' surface of the KMC links will make them hand-detachable like the SRAM links.
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    I believe the older KMC missing links are harder to remove than the more recent ones - the design has been changed slightly.

  10. #10
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    Pinch the chain with your left hand so that just the removanle link is isolated. Squeeze both ends of the isolated rollers with needlenose pliers and the link pops open.
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

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  11. #11
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    I use needle nose pliers to squeeze the two halves of the link in opposing directions. Works all the time... I even do this with the master links on SRAM 10-speed chains, which are not supposed to be removable or reusable.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by well biked View Post
    I think there must be more than one type of "re-usable" KMC connector link out there. Every other KMC chain I've ever owned came with what I would call an old fashioned "master link," and those connectors are clearly not made to be removed by hand.
    I've been wondering about this too. One of my bikes came with a 10sp KMC DX10, which had an easily removable link. When that chain was worn out, I replaced it with another DX10. This time the link was nearly impossible to remove. I finally managed it with a pair of needlenose pliers, and then replaced it with a Wipperman link for the remainder of its life. I don't remember the online vendor I ordered it from, but I do remember the product description saying something about the chain coming with a "one time use" master link. I dismissed it based on my previous experience with that model, and figured they were just confusing it with some other chain, but I was apparently wrong. So either KMC has two different links that they freely intermingle in the same model, or their quality control for the Missing Link connectors is really really bad, and some of them just fit together way too tightly.

  13. #13
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    Interesting!

    I tried the needle nose pliers, as it seems the Park tool is basically a pair of pliers designed to hook the links, but that did not work so my conclusion is that this is one of the 8/9 speed chains that is not made to be unlinked with this link. What puzzles me then is the remark that these chains are not meant to have a pin pushed out and reinserted. I cannot find anyone who sells pins for the KMC chains like Shimano so either you must use a Shimano pin then or use some other external connecting link like the Wippermann or SRAM, is that correct? Times have changed I know but time was the only way to break a chain was to punch out a pin until you could unlink and then reinsert the link. What's the experience out there on doing this to a KMC chain, purportedly 8 speed?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by San Rensho View Post
    Pinch the chain with your left hand so that just the removanle link is isolated. Squeeze both ends of the isolated rollers with needlenose pliers and the link pops open.
    In true BF jargon, +1 on the needle nose pliers trick.
    I've reused the missing links 5 or 6 times. Although this is contrary to manufacturers instructions

  15. #15
    DPN
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    There does seem to be an awful lot of confusion on whether these links are "one time use only" or reuseable...

    I was looking for a link to allow me to quickly remove my Shimano 10 speed ultra narrow (5.88mm) chain for cleaning.

    The KMC web site shows this link http://www.kmcchain.com.tw/index.php...o=view&id=1051
    which is for a Reusable MissingLink 1/2" 11/128.

    I could never find the CL559S link in the US, and would up buying 2 from England...I assume the CL559S stand for Chain Link, 5.59mm, Shimano...

    FWIW....

    DPN

  16. #16
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    In general, I've noticed that it is difficult to remove and affix masterlinks on dirty chains. In all cases, you should consider cleaning the chain first with a chain machine. It's not a bad thing to do anyway as you'll get less muck on your hands.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by BearSquirrel View Post
    In general, I've noticed that it is difficult to remove and affix masterlinks on dirty chains. In all cases, you should consider cleaning the chain first with a chain machine. It's not a bad thing to do anyway as you'll get less muck on your hands.
    That would seem to defeat the purpose for which most people use a link.
    Personally I use the Shimano pin, clean it with a machine and leave it on the bike untill time to replace.

  18. #18
    Jet Jockey Banzai's Avatar
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    I've tried the needlenose pliers quite a few times. Maybe I'm just a moron, but I can never get it to work.
    Good night...and good luck

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by dvs cycles View Post
    That would seem to defeat the purpose for which most people use a link.
    Personally I use the Shimano pin, clean it with a machine and leave it on the bike untill time to replace.
    Ooooohhh, the irony. Then again, nothing says you can take a pass with a chain machine then move the chain to a 2L bottle where you claim it is more efficient.

    Actually, I remove my chain when I'm doing crank maintenance and appreciate not having to push pins. I know damn sure that singlespeed riders remove their chains a LOT!!!!

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by BearSquirrel View Post
    Ooooohhh, the irony. Then again, nothing says you can take a pass with a chain machine then move the chain to a 2L bottle where you claim it is more efficient.

    Actually, I remove my chain when I'm doing crank maintenance and appreciate not having to push pins. I know damn sure that singlespeed riders remove their chains a LOT!!!!
    Where did I ever say 2l bottle is more efficient?? Though my machine method may not be the totally sterile clean some more anal types here strive to achieve, it gets it clean enough. I get 4000+ miles from DA-10 chains before they reach the 75% mark on my Park chain gauge. I go through 2 to 3 chains a year depending on my miles.
    I have many friends that use some sort of link but I just prefer to use my chain like Shimano designed it.
    As for single speeds, They don't have the twisting forces created from shifting to worry about.
    How often do you HAVE to do crank maintainance? I rarely have to touch mine and when I do it usually is time for a new chain anyways. Maybe I don't keep mine shiney all the time but I prefer to ride it more than clean it.

  21. #21
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    Found a useful link here:

    http://www.kmcchain.com/index.php?ln...o=view&id=1051

    Spent a good while getting nowhere in removing my link - once I'd seen the pictures at the bottom of the above linked page I got it off instantly

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DPN View Post
    There does seem to be an awful lot of confusion on whether these links are "one time use only" or reuseable...

    I was looking for a link to allow me to quickly remove my Shimano 10 speed ultra narrow (5.88mm) chain for cleaning.

    The KMC web site shows this link http://www.kmcchain.com.tw/index.php...o=view&id=1051
    which is for a Reusable MissingLink 1/2" 11/128.

    I could never find the CL559S link in the US, and would up buying 2 from England...I assume the CL559S stand for Chain Link, 5.59mm, Shimano...

    FWIW....

    DPN
    CL559S KMC M/L 10S
    http://www.ebikestop.com/kmc_missing...ins-CH4057.php

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by dvs cycles View Post
    That has not been an acceptable method for many years. Was good with 7 and some 8 speed systems back in the day.
    Yeah, but I have seen it work with Sram 9 speed chains.

  24. #24
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    When a master link is difficult to remove I use a pair of Channel lock pliers to squeeze the link open.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidad View Post
    Yeah, but I have seen it work with Sram 9 speed chains.
    Work for how long? You can push the pins back in but seeing as how you've ruined the peening that was intended to hold the pin in place, it's only a matter of time before it works itself loose. It's simply not worth the risk to reuse those pins given the consequences of an untimely failure and the availability of cheap quick links.

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