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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 02-07-08, 10:45 AM   #1
coasting 
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Chain replacement

Hi all

Do you think chains should be changed regularly as a precaution before they stretch too much and start wearing out the rear cogs or should you just keep riding the chain until both the casette and the chain needs changing together.


I took my bike to the LBS to service the hubs recently and asked them to change the chain since I have just over 2k miles on it. There seems to be no noticeable wear on the cassette and the chain isn't obviously stretched but I did notice the chain skipped a couple of times when on the smaller cogs at the back. The shop said he wouldn't replace the chain without changing the cassette, but my cassette is fine (no sharp teeth all square still). He said I should just keep riding with the same chain until the cassette also needs changing. But if I change the chain wouldn't I keep the cassette in good shape for longer?

Thanks for your thoughts
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Old 02-07-08, 10:58 AM   #2
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It depends on chain wear. If the chain is particularly worn then he may be right and you've left it too long between changes. Get a second opinion and/or buy a chain wear checker (a steel rule will do).

http://www.google.com/search?num=100...hain+wear+tool
http://www.google.com/search?num=100...ain+wear+guide
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Old 02-07-08, 11:54 AM   #3
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Measure the chain. You can do a quick google search to see the acceptable tolerances, but I believe that with 1/16" or less of "stretch"/wear you can get by with just changing the chain. This should make it easier to avoid changing chainrings as often...
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Old 02-07-08, 02:05 PM   #4
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I don't think you have to replace the chain and cassette at the same time, I usually replace the cassette every other chain. Don't replace the chain based on miles, do the measurement and replace it when it stretches.
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Old 02-07-08, 02:18 PM   #5
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Minimally, new chain and cassette at the end of every season.
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Old 02-07-08, 03:03 PM   #6
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^^ Pretty much my plan. Oddly, I wear cassettes in about 2k and the chain is fine. That's on three different bikes.
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Old 02-07-08, 05:09 PM   #7
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If you check the chain regularly for stretch and replace it before it's too bad, your cassette ought to last a long time. Park makes a chain checker that lets you see the amount of stretch.
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Old 02-07-08, 05:35 PM   #8
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^^ Sorry, not for me. NEW chains I blow the cassette in 2k miles or so. Proper maintenance and everything.
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Old 02-07-08, 06:47 PM   #9
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Jeez, are you using Dura Ace??? I've been using 105 or Ultegra cassettes and I can usually go 2 chains before I have to change the cassette.
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Old 02-07-08, 08:09 PM   #10
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2x 10sp Campy and 1x 9sp Deore XT. No body can explain it, other than to say I really--really--like torque. Whole LBS mechanic shops have puzzled over it. I've changed everything but my riding style. It is what it is (expensive).
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Old 02-07-08, 11:15 PM   #11
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2x 10sp Campy and 1x 9sp Deore XT. No body can explain it, other than to say I really--really--like torque. Whole LBS mechanic shops have puzzled over it. I've changed everything but my riding style. It is what it is (expensive).
I'm using Campy 10sp and usually get 3-4 chains before I have to change cassettes, but there are times when it maybe 2-3 and you're right about the cost.
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Old 02-07-08, 11:35 PM   #12
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I had heard that if you change chains every thousand miles or so, the cassette will last a lot longer. They said 7 or 8 thousand miles, but I don't have any proof yet. I have about 3,000 miles on mine so far, and the cassette is still good. I am still running the stock Tiagra parts that came on my Cross Check.
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Old 02-08-08, 12:50 AM   #13
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I run my chains around 1500 miles.
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Old 02-08-08, 11:02 AM   #14
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I had heard that if you change chains every thousand miles or so, the cassette will last a lot longer. They said 7 or 8 thousand miles, but I don't have any proof yet. I have about 3,000 miles on mine so far, and the cassette is still good. I am still running the stock Tiagra parts that came on my Cross Check.
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Old 02-08-08, 11:07 AM   #15
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I had heard that if you change chains every thousand miles or so, the cassette will last a lot longer. They said 7 or 8 thousand miles, but I don't have any proof yet. I have about 3,000 miles on mine so far, and the cassette is still good. I am still running the stock Tiagra parts that came on my Cross Check.
I've learned that I'm hard on drivetrains...between a cross bike (so more dirt) and the fact that I stand to climb, etc.

first time, I waited to change the chain until 1500 miles. Casette was shot (105).

Then I got an Ultegra casette and started cleaning the drivetrain more and measuring the chain. sweet spot for me is to change the chain every 700-800 miles. I'm to the point now where I can feel when it needs changing. I've had 2 chains on the Ultegra cassette and it's good for at least another 2.
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Old 02-08-08, 03:03 PM   #16
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Sounds like more people change chains regularly before wearing out the cassette rather than just keep the same chain and casstte until the the cassette is worn out. The difference seems to be how long it takes before the chain needs changing.
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