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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

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Old 04-11-13, 06:07 PM   #1
rangerdavid
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WTF is the deal wiith KMC chains?

I broke the chain, and got it to length. Now the KMC quick link that came with it won't fit. Neither will the Sram link or a couple of other brands of links I have.. Is there some secret to making a KMC chain fit???
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Old 04-11-13, 06:12 PM   #2
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Never had this problem with KMC chains.
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Old 04-11-13, 06:12 PM   #3
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I slid a very small screwdriver between the rollers on the master link and expanded them manually. All has been well since.
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Old 04-11-13, 06:17 PM   #4
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I use a small pair of needlenose pliers
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Old 04-11-13, 06:20 PM   #5
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I had this exact problem with 2 KMC links previously, and posted about one of them here - and got my rear end flamed to all end about how I was incompetent, didn't know how to read, etc. Like 3 pages of flames.

I read everything about it I could find online, and did all the correct mounting tricks - none worked. I ended up using serious extreme force (like equivalent of a 500watt push) to pop it on, and then had to jiggle it back and forth many times to loosen it up enough for use. Only after all this craziness did it become like a normal link - I popped it off (with the special tool) and after that initial crazy mount it was easy to put back on.

I think there are some manufacturer problems with the consistency of some missing links, as it happened to me twice with 2 different chains, and I was using the missing link that came with the chain, not a separately bought link.

It'll go on - but it can require some serious force if you get a stuck one like mine.
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Old 04-11-13, 06:41 PM   #6
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nice. I'd much rather ride my bike than wrench it.....
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Old 04-11-13, 06:44 PM   #7
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Never had this problem with KMC chains.
Same here.
I use them on both Shimano & Campy drivetrains.
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Old 04-11-13, 06:44 PM   #8
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actually, I've had Sram and Dura Ace chains, but this is my first KMC chain. PITA.
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Old 04-11-13, 06:52 PM   #9
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I went from a KMC to Dura-Ace. The KMC chain that came on my bike never seemd to wear out (4000 miles and still only at .75mm wear), so I replaced it anyway for fear that it may be damaging my cassette and/or chainrings. The Dura-Ace is lighter, but also will likely not last as long because of the hollow pins.
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Old 04-11-13, 06:54 PM   #10
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I just took off a Dura Ace chain. Got couple thousand miles on it. Great product.
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Old 04-11-13, 07:02 PM   #11
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No sure what you mean, OP, but I use the cranks to pop the link to the locked position. The trick is the link has to be on the top run of chain, not on the bottom. Just set the plates in position on the pins, hold the rear wheel and rotate the crank. Sometimes it takes two people. Occasionally you have to have one person hold the wheel while you stand on the forward pedal. Always works eventually. Best chain I have ever used.
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Old 04-11-13, 07:07 PM   #12
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I went from a KMC to Dura-Ace. The KMC chain that came on my bike never seemd to wear out (4000 miles and still only at .75mm wear), so I replaced it anyway for fear that it may be damaging my cassette and/or chainrings. The Dura-Ace is lighter, but also will likely not last as long because of the hollow pins.
Why do you think it won't last as long? The center of the rivet wears very little.
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Old 04-11-13, 07:24 PM   #13
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nice. I'd much rather ride my bike than wrench it.....
Unless you live right next door, It takes less time to do just about anything that needs to be done on a bike yourself than it does to take it to a shop and then have to spend even more time going to pick it up.

Never mind being without it for a however long it takes to do whatever needs to be done.
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Old 04-11-13, 07:36 PM   #14
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Wow. Every KMC chain I've ever used only took squeezing the rear brake and popping the pedal with the heel of my hand. Are you sure you have the two halves squeezed together all the way?
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Old 04-11-13, 08:05 PM   #15
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Wow. Every KMC chain I've ever used only took squeezing the rear brake and popping the pedal with the heel of my hand. Are you sure you have the two halves squeezed together all the way?
+ 1.
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Old 04-12-13, 05:48 AM   #16
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If it is any help, here is an assembly drawing. The bushing is shown in the exploded roller unit.

Good God man, it's spring...time to get the razor out.
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Old 04-12-13, 09:51 AM   #17
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Good God man, it's spring...time to get the razor out.
+1 Cyclists shave it all!
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Old 04-12-13, 10:28 AM   #18
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Wow. Every KMC chain I've ever used only took squeezing the rear brake and popping the pedal with the heel of my hand. Are you sure you have the two halves squeezed together all the way?
I can say with absolute confidence that the 2 KMC chains-links I had, this would absolutely not work, nor would the easy pop-on when link is on the top of the chain.

Both of those links I was dealing with came manufactured so tightly that I had to force the link onto the chain, and then do insane super stomps to get it to lock, which is very hard as most of the time that stomp simply knocks the chain/link loose. And yes, I know absolutely what I'm doing - after I got the initial mount (after like 30 failed stomps, seriously), and then some further bending and lubing, the link could be re-mounted easily with a minimal push on the cranks with my hand. There are definitely some links that come wayyyyy too tight, and I was lucky (unlucky) enough to get 2 in a row of them.

I since bought a 5-pack of KMC links separately from the chain, and the 3rd and 4th ones I've tried have been fine. But I know for absolute sure it wasn't user error on my part with the first 2 - I spent over an hour (!!) trying to get each of those links on, and that included watching/reading everything I could find online.
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Old 04-12-13, 04:20 PM   #19
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Took it to the lbs and they got it on. They also (both mechanics that is) said I made a poor choice of chains. They said I should stick with sram or shimano chains. Said the KMC will break under heavy watts. Actually he said wait til you're pedaling up that 22% grade to your house and it breaks, then you'll wish you had a better chain. anyone else have a KMC chain break while pedaling?
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Old 04-12-13, 04:22 PM   #20
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Never heard of KMC chains being prone to breaking. There were a batch of Ultegra chains that were very prone to breaking, though...
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Old 04-12-13, 04:23 PM   #21
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...actually, I like the chain. I got one of the gold ones, and it looks cool, and so far, rides great.
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Old 04-12-13, 04:27 PM   #22
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Took it to the lbs and they got it on. They also (both mechanics that is) said I made a poor choice of chains. They said I should stick with sram or shimano chains. Said the KMC will break under heavy watts. Actually he said wait til you're pedaling up that 22% grade to your house and it breaks, then you'll wish you had a better chain. anyone else have a KMC chain break while pedaling?
I've hauled my 250lb bulk with rack and panniers up 20% gradients before and never broken my KMC chain in the process. I use the cheapie X9 73 chains that cost about the same as a round of drinks.
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Old 04-12-13, 04:38 PM   #23
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Took it to the lbs and they got it on. They also (both mechanics that is) said I made a poor choice of chains. They said I should stick with sram or shimano chains. Said the KMC will break under heavy watts. Actually he said wait til you're pedaling up that 22% grade to your house and it breaks, then you'll wish you had a better chain. anyone else have a KMC chain break while pedaling?
I have climb with a short but steep 21% grade through a turn near here that I usually go through at 350+ watts, which hurts pretty bad. Chain has never snapped. It's also never snapped in any sprints I've done where I've been 700ish watts, so I think it'll be fine.
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Old 04-12-13, 05:13 PM   #24
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Took it to the lbs and they got it on. They also (both mechanics that is) said I made a poor choice of chains. They said I should stick with sram or shimano chains. Said the KMC will break under heavy watts. Actually he said wait til you're pedaling up that 22% grade to your house and it breaks, then you'll wish you had a better chain. anyone else have a KMC chain break while pedaling?
funny that they would say that kmc chains would break and not shimano chains....
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Old 04-12-13, 05:20 PM   #25
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funny that they would say that kmc chains would break and not shimano chains....
Indeed, considering:
1. Shimano chains have a manually-installed pin which is a weak point if not properly installed.
2. KMC is an OEM for chains sold under other names...
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