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Thread: Replacing Chain

  1. #1
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    Replacing Chain

    Ok, so I'm replacing the chain for the first time on my Gary Fisher Tiburon. So I went and bought a chain today at my local bike shop and when I go to compare it to the old chain, it's 2 links too short! My old chain is 116 links and the new one is 114. I called the guy at the bike shop and he said that the chain should be too long not too short. This is the same bike shop who assembled it, did they just assemble it with too much chain or should it really have 116 links. The guy thought I was full of crap when I told him it had 116 links. The shop's closed on Sundays and I'd really like to get this resolved by myself to tomorrow.

    If I go ahead and put the 114 link chain on there will anything bad come of it? Will the derailers have to be readjusted?

  2. #2
    Get on your bikes & ride! xB_Nutt's Avatar
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    Wrap it around the large cog in the back and the large ring in the front without going through your rear derailleur. If you have 2 links to spare you should be fine. You will also be fine if you never go big rear cog, big front ring which you shouldn't do anyway.
    Last edited by xB_Nutt; 02-21-09 at 07:18 PM. Reason: Can't spell
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    Senior Member bigvegan's Avatar
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    You should be ok, but this is weird.

    Does the chain come stock at 114 links, or is there a chance someone else bought it, "broke" the chain to fit their bike, then repacked/returned it for some reason without putting the rest of the chain back on?

  4. #4
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    I later look up the chain online and it says it should be 114 links, which is what it is. Upon doing more research I found that I should size the chain on the small/small gear relative to the derailer.

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    Quote Originally Posted by uak_squirrelpie View Post
    I later look up the chain online and it says it should be 114 links, which is what it is. Upon doing more research I found that I should size the chain on the small/small gear relative to the derailer.
    That's conceptually incorrect. Size it to cover big-big + 2 half-links. Wrap it around both the large chainring and the largest cog without going through the rear derailleur. Add two half-links and that's the correct, and minimum safe, length.

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    I had this problem when I changed the chain on my wifes bike. I bought a SRAM chain which had 114 links. Turns out her chain was 116. Back to the LBS and I got a shimano chain with 116. bk

  7. #7
    Senior Member Bill Kapaun's Avatar
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    Chains are USUALLY longer than you need.
    Until you actually measure the correct chain length for your bike, you really don't know what is correct.
    Just because it came with 116 from the factory doesn't mean it's the correct length. DO you think they'd bother removing 2 links if the RDER had enough take up? They might on a high enf bike, but generally they're more concerned about speedy assembly. That's why you see retainer type bearings often used.

    http://sheldonbrown.com/derailer-adjustment.html#chain

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by uak_squirrelpie View Post
    I later look up the chain online and it says it should be 114 links,
    Are you sure you got the right width chain? I believe chains for SS/IGH bikes are shorter(and wider) than chains for external gears.

  9. #9
    Senior Member sumguy's Avatar
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    I was going to replace my HG73 chain which is 116 links with a different brand that had a master link or power connector. Many of the other brands are 114 or 112 links while the Shimano 9sp chains are 116 links.

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