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Old 10-16-12, 09:13 AM   #1
Hairy Hands
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Master Link?

Do you find any advantages or disadvantages to using a Master Link on your chain?

Do you pin the chain and then carry a ML as a spare?

Do you need to carry a chain tool if you have extra ML's in your bag?
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Old 10-16-12, 09:45 AM   #2
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I find it really hard to get a ML to release when I'm tired and my hands are cold. Dark is even worse. I prefer to run Ultegra drivetrains and pinned chains. I've never broken a chain. I carry a chain tool, a ML, and at least 2 spare pins. I've only used these on other people's bikes, but still . . .
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Old 10-16-12, 11:14 AM   #3
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Master links are easier and more reliable for me than driving in a pin. KMC makes re-usable links (use they aren't always easy to open, add grime, cold, dark, wet.... ). SRAM's are single-use although I may carry used ones as emergency spares. At home, I've found a Park Tools ML-1 pliers makes it easy to open a SRAM-style master link. On the road, I carry a chain tool (mini tool component), some spare links, and spare ML. The one time I've had a chain failure was on a test ride after repinning a chain instead of using a ML - fortunately, I was a mile from home.
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Old 10-16-12, 11:18 AM   #4
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I don't like pinned chains. The pinning always will be a suspect area for failure.

I carry a chain breaker on most rides. If I were to need to break a chain, it seems to me to be easier to break it on either side of the joiner link and rejoin using a new one, if the joiner is too difficult to break.

Having said that, I've never had to undo a joiner link in the dark and cold.
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Old 10-16-12, 12:00 PM   #5
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the only reason to mess with a chain on the road is if it breaks, so you just need a spare master link and a tool to drive out the pin that allows you to join the two ends with a master link. I think I probably could get a master link out, but I'm not sure why I would want to do so.
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Old 10-16-12, 01:00 PM   #6
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Not only does a master link make it a lot easier to clean the bike later, but carrying a spare can save the day if you break the chain (as above, you'll need a chain tool). It's far easier to add a spare master link in the dark and cold than it is to *correctly* install a pin on a ten-speed chain, which has to be done perfectly or risk another break.
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Old 10-16-12, 01:52 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
I find it really hard to get a ML to release when I'm tired and my hands are cold.
the sram ones are difficult. try the wipperman ones, much, much easier.

i hate the pins and i carry an extra master link in my bag, on the tandem i always have a chain tool as well.
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Old 10-16-12, 02:07 PM   #8
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I stopped carrying a chain tool or a master link years ago. I never used them. Interestingly, I actually broke a chain for the first time during the FC508 a couple weeks ago. We had a chain tool in the toolbox in the van so we just took a link out of it and pinned it for the final 30 miles. In long distance riding/racing things sometimes do happen but if you keep your stuff in good working condition (meaning replacing stuff before it breaks) you will minimize the amount of "spares" and tools you need to haul around with you.
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Old 10-16-12, 02:18 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zzzwillzzz View Post
the sram ones are difficult. try the wipperman ones, much, much easier.

i hate the pins and i carry an extra master link in my bag, on the tandem i always have a chain tool as well.
SRAM 8s & 9s don't have that stupid latching effect their 10s link has.
Recently KMC has also been putting that same "feature" on their 10s chains.
Maybe Park is paying them a percentage of MLP-1 sales.

I swore off the Wippermans after one disconnected in the middle of an FD shift.
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Old 10-17-12, 05:24 AM   #10
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Advantage to master link
I use a different rear wheel and chain on the trainer. So i am changing out wheels and chains often.

Master link as a spare

Yes on a chain tool the chain tool also has a spoke wrench on it.
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