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Old 06-09-09, 06:32 PM   #1
rustyshacklefrd
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Should i replace a 24 year old chain?

I have a feeling the bike i got was bought, used like twice, and put in the garage, slowly engulfed by crap, destined to be forgotten. the bar tape was the give away.. it was crispy and shriveled when i got it, and the tires looked like they hadnt been changed in years.

anyway, having replaced the rear hellicomatic wheel with a mavic laced to a 105, im debating getting a new chain. i read about the 12 link 12 inch rule (something like that anyway) and so far the chain seems good. im guessing like everything else on the bike, its original and wasn't ever replaced.. even if its still in decent shape, should i replace the blackened 24 year old chain or just let it be?
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Old 06-09-09, 06:35 PM   #2
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If there is as little use on the chain as you say, clean it up and you should be good to go. If the drive train is noisy, or skips, then yes change it.
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Old 06-09-09, 07:02 PM   #3
rustyshacklefrd
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see im not sure, its been making some noise, but that might be because i popped a 130mm hub into a 126 mm spacing.. what is the rule exactly? if i measure 12 links, does that include the half links? its supposed to be a little over 12 inches? i have no chain tool so i just measure it on the bike..
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Old 06-09-09, 07:14 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by rustyshacklefrd View Post
see im not sure, its been making some noise, but that might be because i popped a 130mm hub into a 126 mm spacing.. what is the rule exactly? if i measure 12 links, does that include the half links? its supposed to be a little over 12 inches? i have no chain tool so i just measure it on the bike..

What was the old gearing vs the new. Have we moved from a 6 speed to a 9. You might have a 1/4" chain where you should be running a 3/8".

A new chain is what, $15...........
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Old 06-09-09, 08:15 PM   #5
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see im not sure, its been making some noise, but that might be because i popped a 130mm hub into a 126 mm spacing.. what is the rule exactly? if i measure 12 links, does that include the half links? its supposed to be a little over 12 inches? i have no chain tool so i just measure it on the bike..
I moved from 122 -> 130, I don't hear any noises, and you shouldn't either. I would replace the chain . . . get and SRAM on the cheap, and you get the powerlink.
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Old 06-09-09, 08:19 PM   #6
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The dropout width doesn't matter but the freewheel/cassette spacing does. If you are using a 7, 8, 9 or 10-speed cassette on the new wheel and the old chain was a 5 or 6-speed, it will be too wide and won't work quietly.
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Old 06-09-09, 08:34 PM   #7
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Replace the chain if you replace the rear cogset.

Simple fix that will prevent any future headaches.
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Old 06-09-09, 08:53 PM   #8
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No need to replace the chain if the chain was hardly used on the former cassette/freewheel. And if it does need replacing - he'll know this as soon as he takes a ride. If you look closely at the side-plates, do they spell SEDIS (short for Sedisport)? If so then you really don't need a connecting link - the chain will work fine with just using a chain-tool to drive in/out links. Add a drop of oil to each link and let it soak in. You may have opened a cool time-capsule - I hope!

If you do end up needing to replace it - SRAM would be the way I'd suggest.

Let us know, please!
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Old 06-10-09, 06:21 AM   #9
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How many cogs are now on the back? If you switched the number of gears you may need a narrower chain. If not, you should be able to quiet it down. I've put 130 wheels in 126 steel frames without problems in the past.
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Old 06-10-09, 08:09 AM   #10
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Replace the chain.

A 24 year old chain will almost surely be too wide for anything more than a seven speed cassette, and more importantly will not have peened rivets.

Before hyperglide, rivets were simply pressed into an undersized hole in the plates, and retained by friction alone. That was fine until Hyperglide shifting increased the side forces and made peening the rivets necessary to prevent chain breakage. If you use this chain on a modern cassette you face a great likelihood of chain breakage, possibly causing injury or at the very least some inconvenience.
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Old 06-10-09, 11:26 AM   #11
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i moved from a 6 to an 8 spd, which is kind of pointless because my old derailleur cant even make it up to the 25t gear it seems.. but yeah, ill probably end up getting it changed. atleast now it'll match my shiny new cassette.
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Old 06-10-09, 12:06 PM   #12
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i moved from a 6 to an 8 spd, which is kind of pointless because my old derailleur cant even make it up to the 25t gear it seems.. but yeah, ill probably end up getting it changed. atleast now it'll match my shiny new cassette.
Did you readjust the low limit screw? Most older rear derailleurs did have enough travel to cover the wider 8 and up speed cassettes but the limit screws have to be reset.
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