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  1. #1
    Still can't climb
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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

  2. #2
    POWERCRANK addict markhr's Avatar
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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).

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  3. #3
    Solo Rider, always DFL
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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...
    "Having modest aspirations RULES." --patentcad
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  4. #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.

  5. #5
    Gorntastic! v1k1ng1001's Avatar
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    Minimally, new chain and cassette at the end of every season.

  6. #6
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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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.
    Mike
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  7. #7
    Are we having fun yet? Prosody's Avatar
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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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  8. #8
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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    ^^ Sorry, not for me. NEW chains I blow the cassette in 2k miles or so. Proper maintenance and everything.
    Mike
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  9. #9
    Senior Member jaxgtr's Avatar
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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.
    Brian | 2013 Cannondale SuperSix 5 | 2014 Trek CrossRip Comp | 2003 Trek 7300
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  10. #10
    Sensible shoes. CastIron's Avatar
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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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  11. #11
    Senior Member DanteB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CastIron View Post
    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.
    Make mine a double!

  12. #12
    Senior Member c_m_shooter's Avatar
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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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  13. #13
    Senior Member DanteB's Avatar
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    I run my chains around 1500 miles.
    Make mine a double!

  14. #14
    Gorntastic! v1k1ng1001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by c_m_shooter View Post
    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.
    True

  15. #15
    Senior Member adrien's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by c_m_shooter View Post
    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.
    "how do you know you can't swim until you have drowned?"

  16. #16
    Still can't climb
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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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