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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 07-16-17, 03:46 PM   #1
bonsai171
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chain wear

Hi,

I did a once over on all my bikes today, and noticed that the chain on my fixed gear is starting to wear. It is at .5% wear according to the Park CC-3.2. Should the chain be replaced at .75% just like a normal geared bike, so as to prevent wear on the cog? Thanks,

Dave
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Old 07-17-17, 12:24 AM   #2
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Just out of curiosity, what did the chain measure when it was new?
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Old 07-17-17, 01:12 AM   #3
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First of all, measure the chain with a 12 inch ruler. You can safely run the chain until, it's stretched 1/8" over 12" (1%). Then you have a decision. SS bikes are very immune to the skipping that plagues derailleur bikes, so odds are the chain can run to about 3% stretch (3/8" over 12")and still be OK. That might take a lifetime, or if sprockets cost more than 2-3 chains, you might use a new chain at 1% or so.

Replacing the chain sooner than 1% would be wasteful, unless chains were very cheap.
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Old 07-17-17, 04:09 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
Just out of curiosity, what did the chain measure when it was new?
Before it was new, it was less than .5% (couldn't insert the tool into the chain to check it).

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Old 07-17-17, 06:53 AM   #5
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You have a long way to go on that chain as single speed bikes can allow a lot of chain stretch before replacement. As the Park cc-3.2 doesn't have a 1.0% level, measure until the .75% measurement is tight.

BTW, put pressure on the crank to keep the chain tight to make certain the chain doesn't sag when you measure.
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Old 07-17-17, 10:10 AM   #6
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Before it was new, it was less than .5% (couldn't insert the tool into the chain to check it).

Dave
Okay. Like FBinNY and others, I prefer using a ruler to measure my chain wear, and since some chain checking tools already measure a brand-new chain as partially worn (due to roller play), it would be a shame to throw away a chain that hadn't actually worn much.
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Old 07-17-17, 10:21 AM   #7
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The key here is to understand that guidelines that evolved for derailleur chains don't apply to single speed chains. The reality is that nobody ever cared about chain stretch on single speed bikes because it's not possible for those to suffer the dreaded chain skip.
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Old 07-17-17, 05:57 PM   #8
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The key here is to understand that guidelines that evolved for derailleur chains don't apply to single speed chains. The reality is that nobody ever cared about chain stretch on single speed bikes because it's not possible for those to suffer the dreaded chain skip.
I recently replaced my chain because I was getting a crunchy feeling on my first stroke from a stop - I measured the chain and it was at 1%, so I figured the crunchiness was the chain riding up on the cog and/or chainring when going from slack to tight. New chain seemed to work. This is my commuter and it sees a lot of road grime so worn chain made sense.
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Old 07-17-17, 07:16 PM   #9
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You have a long way to go on that chain as single speed bikes can allow a lot of chain stretch before replacement. As the Park cc-3.2 doesn't have a 1.0% level, measure until the .75% measurement is tight.

BTW, put pressure on the crank to keep the chain tight to make certain the chain doesn't sag when you measure.
Thanks.. I figured it was still relatively new. Got the chain in October, and it has around 450 mi on it. Was asking more for a point of reference. The shop owner put a BMX chain on the bike (not familiar with the brand) but also assured me it would last a really long time.

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Old 07-17-17, 07:37 PM   #10
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450 miles is nothing in chain years. Add another zero to that number and it might be time to get a new one.
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Old 07-17-17, 08:53 PM   #11
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I sometimes wonder how long I'll live, in chain years.
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Old 07-18-17, 07:35 PM   #12
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450 miles is nothing in chain years. Add another zero to that number and it might be time to get a new one.
Lol really? I was thinking about changing it to a 3/32 to save weight. Guess I'll just keep riding that
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Old 07-25-17, 03:19 PM   #13
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When the chain gets to 1% wear, you've reached the decision point:
1) replace the chain

or

2)go 3X that distance, then replace the chain, chainring, and cog

In my experience, 4,000 all-weather miles was typical life for a chain, chainring, and cog (and rear hub cartridge bearings, but that's unrelated). Replacing any one component with greater than 1% wear is a recipe for a noisy drivetrain.
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Old 07-25-17, 07:47 PM   #14
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Lol really? I was thinking about changing it to a 3/32 to save weight.
LOL indeed.
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