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Old 12-06-11, 06:16 AM   #1
Bob Ross
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Ultegra chain incompatible w/ quick-disconnect link?!?!?!

So the guy at my LBS tells my wife the reason her drivetrain has been making so much noise (a regular low-pitched "click" every revolution) lately is because she's got a quick-disconnect link (Wipperman or Connex, I dunno) on an Ultegra chain, and that the new Ultegra (presumably he means 6700?) chains aren't compatible with these links.

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?

She's had that link for 8 or 9 months with no problems. Moreover, *I've* had the same link on an Ultegra 6700 chain for ~3,000 miles and had no problems. (Note to self: I'm probably overdue for a new chain.)

Was this guy making stuff up, or is there some truth to this?
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Old 12-06-11, 08:06 AM   #2
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low-pitched "click" every revolution of what? Wheel, crank or chain? Once per chain revolution might be chain-related, otherwise look elsewhere.
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Old 12-06-11, 08:23 AM   #3
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FWIW, I use KMC 10-speed connector links on 10-speed KMC and Shimano chains, and SRAM 10 speed connector links on 10-speed SRAM and Campy chains. If I'm not mistaken, there's a tiny difference in width among the various brands of 10-speed chains, with KMC and Shimano having the same width, and SRAM and Campy having the same width. The width difference is something like .1 millimeter I believe. I don't know about Wipperman chains, although I believe their connector links have packaging that states "compatible with all brands of 10 speed chains" or something to that affect. One thing's for sure, the Wipperman connector link is of a slightly different design than the others. Again, FWIW.
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Old 12-06-11, 08:39 AM   #4
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The Wippermann Conex link has to be installed in the proper "direction" to run quietly and Wippermann's installation sheet is quite explicit on this. If it's upside down you will get the click you describe.
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Old 12-06-11, 08:41 AM   #5
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The Wippermann Conex link has to be installed in the proper "direction" to run quietly and Wippermann's installation sheet is quite explicit on this. If it's upside down you will get the click you describe.
+1, this may be the key to the problem.
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Old 12-06-11, 03:11 PM   #6
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The Shimao rep said one of the reasons Shimano gave up on their own quick-link was that they tended to wear at a different rate than the rest of the chain, causing clicking issues. And that may translate into "we were losing money on the darn things," but for the record, that was the reason given.

In the case of the Wipperman, yeah, probably upside-down.

On the topic of width differences, it's something to pay attention to with 10-speed: Attachment 130772
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Old 12-06-11, 03:21 PM   #7
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On the topic of width differences, it's something to pay attention to with 10-speed: Attachment 130772
Yep, that pic shows why you should match the link to the chain in terms of width, even if both the link and the chain are ten speed.
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Old 12-06-11, 05:27 PM   #8
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Yes, this happened on my wife's trek which had a 6600 series ultegra chain but a cl562R KMC missing link. It would click every pedal stroke. I replaced the chain with a dx10sc, but kept the old chain. I ordered some cl559r KMC quicklinks which I think are the correct width. The chain was otherwise fine. I haven't tried it to confirm that it was the 6.2mm link that caused the click.
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Old 12-06-11, 05:32 PM   #9
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The Wippermann Conex link has to be installed in the proper "direction" to run quietly and Wippermann's installation sheet is quite explicit on this. If it's upside down you will get the click you describe.
+2 - I had this problem. The link was in wrong.
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Old 12-06-11, 06:16 PM   #10
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This thread points to some of the reasons I don't use a quick link.
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Old 12-06-11, 06:50 PM   #11
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I like quick links. That one must use the correct link and install it properly shouldn't rule them out, IMO.
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Old 12-06-11, 06:56 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by ibis_ti View Post
Yes, this happened on my wife's trek which had a 6600 series ultegra chain but a cl562R KMC missing link. It would click every pedal stroke. I replaced the chain with a dx10sc, but kept the old chain. I ordered some cl559r KMC quicklinks which I think are the correct width. The chain was otherwise fine. I haven't tried it to confirm that it was the 6.2mm link that caused the click.
If the clicking is every pedal stroke, the chain (or a QL) isn't causing it.
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Old 12-06-11, 06:56 PM   #13
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I like quick links.
+1
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Old 12-06-11, 07:37 PM   #14
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This thread points to some of the reasons I don't use a quick link.
Installed properly, and it isn't difficult, the Conex links are both quiet and durable. I have two 10-speed Wippermann chains with their Conex links, one on a Shimano 10-speed drivetrain with 7500 miles and the other on a Campy 10-speed bike with 5500 miles and on it and both are quiet and still shift well.

Finally, I have a 9-speed Conex link installed in a Shimano HG73 9-speed chain and after a bit over 1000 miles it is also completely quiet and has given no problems.

Done right, these things work well.

Last edited by HillRider; 12-06-11 at 07:42 PM.
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Old 12-06-11, 07:39 PM   #15
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Yes, this happened on my wife's trek which had a 6600 series ultegra chain but a cl562R KMC missing link...... I haven't tried it to confirm that it was the 6.2mm link that caused the click.
A 6.2 mm chain is a 9-speed width. A 10-speed is 5.9 mm. If you installed a 9-speed link on a 10-speed chain that certainly could explain the noise.
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Old 12-07-11, 09:23 AM   #16
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agree it's probably upside down link - I had that issue myself. I'm not a fan of Wipperman generally - I've had 2 snap on me, racking the jewels and forcing a not fun walk home.

Switched to KMC - easy to use, no orientation issue and very durable (current link on one bike has done 2 seasons of cyclocross, link on other bike has over 6000 road miles). KMC links are a bit harder to remove, however, so you should get the Park Tool for removing easy links.
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Old 12-07-11, 01:56 PM   #17
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No, 9 speed is 6.6mm. 6.2mm is 10 speed campy...anyway it came like that from Trek or the bike shop, I didn't add the missinglink.

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A 6.2 mm chain is a 9-speed width. A 10-speed is 5.9 mm. If you installed a 9-speed link on a 10-speed chain that certainly could explain the noise.
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Old 12-07-11, 02:13 PM   #18
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No, 9 speed is 6.6mm. 6.2mm is 10 speed campy...anyway it came like that from Trek or the bike shop, I didn't add the missinglink.
The factory Treks I've seen use KMC Missing Link 10's. They're slightly wider than the Shimano chain, and do sometimes click as they pass the FD cage if the limit screws are keeping the cage really close to the chain.
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Old 12-07-11, 02:24 PM   #19
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No, 9 speed is 6.6mm. 6.2mm is 10 speed campy....
+1 Thanks for the correction. The first Campy 10-speed chains were indeed 6.2 mm but they changed them to 5.9 mm shortly thereafter. IIRC Shimano 10-speed chains were always 5.9 mm.
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Old 12-08-11, 01:50 AM   #20
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Yup, I don't know why Trek did that but I got my 6 pack of cl559R kmc missing links today and tried it on the 6600 chain and it definitely fit.
However the cl559S link I had from a kmc chain didn't...but it does fit an SRAM 1070 chain. There must be like a 0.02-0.04mm difference between the 2 so maybe that's why trek had to go up to the 6.2 if the cl559R links didn't exist.

As for the OPs chain...the 6700 chain is supposed to be asymmetric to optimize shifting.
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Old 12-09-11, 11:35 AM   #21
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As for the OPs chain...the 6700 chain is supposed to be asymmetric to optimize shifting.
Shimano's CN-6700 chain is indeed asymmetric so do pay attention to that. Shimano provides a helpful PDF for the CN-6700 chain:

Shimano CN-6700 Chain PDF

I've found Shimano's PDF's on their higher end component groups to be most helpful... RTFM before all else fails.
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Old 02-01-12, 10:31 PM   #22
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Yup, I don't know why Trek did that but I got my 6 pack of cl559R kmc missing links today and tried it on the 6600 chain and it definitely fit.
However the cl559S link I had from a kmc chain didn't...but it does fit an SRAM 1070 chain. There must be like a 0.02-0.04mm difference between the 2 so maybe that's why trek had to go up to the 6.2 if the cl559R links didn't exist.

As for the OPs chain...the 6700 chain is supposed to be asymmetric to optimize shifting.
Dredging up this old thread (okay...it's not THAT old) because it came closest to describing my problem. I just got a new Ultegra 6600 chain, sized it then tried to join it with a cl559R that I've had for almost a year. The darn thing will NOT seat and close. I use a cl559R on my other bike with a SRAM chain and it works fine...but this one will not slide closed on my Ultegra chain.

I'm going to shoot a note off to KMC customer support to see if they have any suggestions (besides to buy a KMC chain). For now, I'll just push a new pin in.
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Old 02-02-12, 08:30 AM   #23
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I would persevere. I did a roadside repair with a Shimano chain and KMC link and I thought for sure it would not catch. I was highly motivated though, and finally it popped in and worked fine.
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Old 02-02-12, 08:51 AM   #24
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I honestly don't understand why quick release is so desirable for chains.
It's not like it ever needs to be disconnected, unless it is time to be replaced.
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Old 02-02-12, 08:57 AM   #25
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I honestly don't understand why quick release is so desirable for chains.
It's not like it ever needs to be disconnected, unless it is time to be replaced.
I use them when they come with the chain (Wippermann, SRAM,KMC) but don't miss them when they don't (Shimano) since I almost never remove the chain for cleaning.

They are a nice "carry along" to repair a damaged chain that occurs during a ride and essential if you have a travel bike like my former S&S coupled Co-Motion.
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