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Old 08-07-10, 07:03 AM   #1
Roadrider1
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New chain now it's a little noisier and crunchy....kind of.

I have been keeping an eye on my Campy 10 chain stretch since new. I just got to the red portion on the Park Tool chain checker and replaced it this morning. I also reused the master link because I didn't have a new one just yet. I removed and cleaned the pullys and put them back the same way and made sure the new chain was the same length. I lubed the chain and went for a ride. It's like I can feel the the chain clicking around the cog. I can feel it more when in the small chain ring and am not getting any skipping. Is this a matter of breaking in? I must have around 2K on this bike/ components.
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Old 08-07-10, 07:42 AM   #2
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If you're not getting any chain skip then there is no problem with the cogs. I don;t know what master link you're using, but only a couple of models fit properly - the special KMC link made for this chain, a SRAM 10 powerlock and the Forster superlink.

FWIW, that chain checker is not measuring elongation. With a Campy chain you're measuring mostly roller wear. You can prove that by checking the chain with a precision 12" rule. Place the end of the rule on the edge of a pin, then check the pin at the opposite end, with the chain pulled tightly. The pin at the opposite should be mostly covered by the rule. You have .5% elongation if nearly half of that pin is exposed. I've used a Campy chian for 6,000 miles and only had .2% elongation. Despite the small elongation, that chain was totally shot at that point. The side clearance was nearly twice the original amount and the space between the roller had increased from .200 inch to about .240.

New chains can be a bit rough and noisy, particularly while the factory grease remains on the chain.
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Old 08-07-10, 08:36 AM   #3
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Carefully check the way the chain is routed around the pulleys and cage in the rear derailleur. I once had mine going on the wrong side of a pin on the cage and it resulted in just the symptoms you describe - i.e. a bit noisy and slight feeling of vibration in the pedals from the chain links but still let me ride without any difficulty shifting or with skipping.
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Old 08-07-10, 09:02 AM   #4
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If you route the chain over the outside of the upper chain guide tab, you'll not only have a lot of noise, you'll have aluminum particles all over the chain.
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Old 08-07-10, 09:18 AM   #5
Roadrider1
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Originally Posted by DaveSSS View Post
If you're not getting any chain skip then there is no problem with the cogs. I don;t know what master link you're using, but only a couple of models fit properly - the special KMC link made for this chain, a SRAM 10 powerlock and the Forster superlink.

FWIW, that chain checker is not measuring elongation. With a Campy chain you're measuring mostly roller wear. You can prove that by checking the chain with a precision 12" rule. Place the end of the rule on the edge of a pin, then check the pin at the opposite end, with the chain pulled tightly. The pin at the opposite should be mostly covered by the rule. You have .5% elongation if nearly half of that pin is exposed. I've used a Campy chian for 6,000 miles and only had .2% elongation. Despite the small elongation, that chain was totally shot at that point. The side clearance was nearly twice the original amount and the space between the roller had increased from .200 inch to about .240.

New chains can be a bit rough and noisy, particularly while the factory grease remains on the chain.
OK, when you say start with the edge of the pin, do you mean the inside edge of the pin or outside? As far as the master link is concerned, it only says "ten Speed" around the pin and has a big 10 in the center of the link.

Last edited by Roadrider1; 08-07-10 at 09:30 AM. Reason: Added
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Old 08-07-10, 09:33 AM   #6
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I checked. It looks to be routed right. I actually did that one time and know to be careful when threading it around the pullys.
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Old 08-07-10, 10:43 AM   #7
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Certainly the first thing to do would be to clean and re-oil the chain first and see if that helps. But Dave raises a point that I've seen here before. And that is that Campy chains wear out in a different manner than Shimano, SRAM or KMC chains due to some difference in how they are made. If that's the case (hopefully Dave can support this or call me wrong on this) then you may have worn your cassette teeth more than you thought as well. If that happened then it would explain why the new chain sounds noisy.

A new chain on worn sprockets will do exactly that. And typically it will sound worse on the sprockets you used the most with the old chain. Try it on some sprockets that you don't use a lot and if the noise goes away and comes back when you're on the most used rear sprockets then likely the noise is coming from the mismatch of new accurately spaced chain and deformed sprocket teeth. If you can test and confirm that the noise and roughness is only on a few of the sprockets then it's not about "breaking in the new chain" but instead to replace the worn sprockets or whole cassette in order to avoid wearing out the new chain before it's time.
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Old 08-07-10, 01:12 PM   #8
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At 2k miles neither the chain nor the sprockets should be worn, unless one has been riding on the beach. Campagnolo chains do seem a bit rattley to me when new.
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Old 08-07-10, 04:37 PM   #9
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The idea of checking with a 12" rule is to measure the pins from center to center, but edge to edge is really more accurate. Place the rule with the left end of the edge of a pin, with the pin exposed. The pin on the right will then be covered (when new).

As for the cog wear, if you don't get chain skip when pedaling with a lot of torque, then the cogs are good. When you've used a cassette for too long, one or more of the most-used cogs will skip when a new chain is installed.

Campy chains apparently have much harder pins and inner plates that don't wear nearly as fast as the other brands. I've done chain wear tests with Shimano and KMC chains and found much more elongation, but I could still get 3500 miles from a Shimano chain and maybe 4,000 from a cheap KMC before reaching .5% elongation.
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