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Can I use a 'wonder link' from a different model chain?

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Can I use a 'wonder link' from a different model chain?

Old 11-29-16, 09:04 PM
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Can I use a 'wonder link' from a different model chain?

Shimano chains use special rivets that can't be re-used. Can I use a 'wonder link' (SRAM or KMC, for example) on the Shimano chain? I'd guess not, but they're all the same size so I don't see why not.
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Old 11-29-16, 09:10 PM
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Yes.
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Old 11-29-16, 09:13 PM
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There's no reason to use one until you need (?) to break the chain, for whatever reason. The chain does come with the connecting pin, after all.
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Old 11-29-16, 09:27 PM
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As long as you use one for the appropriate number of gears.
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Old 11-29-16, 10:24 PM
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Originally Posted by RandomTroll View Post
.... I'd guess not, but they're all the same size so I don't see why not.
Why don't you believe your own instincts?

As you point out, they're the same size, so yes you can use them.

The one caveat is width, you have to use links made for the same width chain.
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Old 11-29-16, 11:07 PM
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Yes

For an 11 speed Shimano Chain the KMC Missing Link part number is CL-555. The SRAM Power Link part number for the same chain is 00.2518.003.000. They work exactly the same.

I buy the KMC missing links from Amazon @ $13 for a half dozen.


-Tim-
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Old 11-29-16, 11:49 PM
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Originally Posted by RandomTroll View Post
Can I use a 'wonder link' (SRAM or KMC, for example) on the Shimano chain? I'd guess not, but they're all the same size so I don't see why not.
Just don't reuse such links from worn chains. If you do, such a link will accelerate wear of the adjacent links in the new chain.
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Old 11-29-16, 11:55 PM
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I used KMC quick links on Shimano CN-6701 Ultegra chains for awhile, and found that the link stretched faster than the rest of the chain-- I would go through 2 links during the life of one chain. The chain behavior was so odd I often thought there was something wrong with my cassette or chainrings. It was admittedly several hundred miles before I thought to change the KMC link, at which point all odd chain behavior ceased immediately. Could be an isolated incident. Dunno.
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Old 11-30-16, 08:02 AM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
I used KMC quick links on Shimano CN-6701 Ultegra chains for awhile, and found that the link stretched faster than the rest of the chain-- I would go through 2 links during the life of one chain. The chain behavior was so odd I often thought there was something wrong with my cassette or chainrings. It was admittedly several hundred miles before I thought to change the KMC link, at which point all odd chain behavior ceased immediately. Could be an isolated incident. Dunno.
Never experienced any chain problems myself. Just for the hell of it I wanted to see how long one of the 10sp KMC links would last so ended up using the same one for three different chains for over 10K miles two of them being 6701 versions. I inspected the link to make sure it looked OK when cleaning each chain every 500 miles or more so. I finally chucked the link when I could see little grooves starting to show up on the pins.
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Old 11-30-16, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
Why don't you believe your own instincts?
Both belief and instincts are inappropriate when experience exists.
Chains and 'wonder links' may have aspects more subtle than I have thought of. I used a chain tool until recently (when, for the first time in 55 years of bicycling, a re-installed pin failed) so I have no experience.

Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
The one caveat is width, you have to use links made for the same width chain.
Width is an aspect of size.
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Old 11-30-16, 08:24 AM
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Originally Posted by wschruba View Post
There's no reason to use one until you need (?) to break the chain, for whatever reason.
I break the chain every month to clean then lubricate it.

Originally Posted by wschruba View Post
The chain does come with the connecting pin, after all.
Shimano chains come with 1 non-reusable connecting pin. If they came with 6, that'd work for me. This is the last I'll buy.

Last edited by RandomTroll; 11-30-16 at 08:25 AM. Reason: fix typo
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Old 11-30-16, 02:07 PM
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I don't buy Shimano chains for that sole reason.

I like to remove my chain every month or two for cleaning**, so I buy KMC or Wippermann/Connex chains that have re-usable quick links. Connex chains are reasonably priced if ordered direct from Europe.

Connex chains have the best quick link (they call it a "connex" link) because it can be opened completely without tools.
I've used those links on other-brand chains without issues. The "connex" links are available separately.

**my favorite chain cleaning technique:
1) open the quick link and run the chain into a clean spaghetti sauce jar
2) add about 1/2 inch of degreaser (I use El Duke, which is biodegradeable/non-toxic. Simple Green is good too)
3) cap the jar and roll on its side to wash the chain
4) add water, shake, rinse, repeat
5) add dish soap, shake, rinse a bunch
6) remove clean chain from the jar, dry with towel
7) replace chain on bike and lubricate

I love the sauce jar because it's free, durable, the cap seals securely, and it can be rolled on its side for very effective agitation. I can use less degreaser and still get a better result than with other, flat containers.
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Old 11-30-16, 02:46 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
I used KMC quick links on Shimano CN-6701 Ultegra chains for awhile, and found that the link stretched faster than the rest of the chain-- I would go through 2 links during the life of one chain. The chain behavior was so odd I often thought there was something wrong with my cassette or chainrings. It was admittedly several hundred miles before I thought to change the KMC link, at which point all odd chain behavior ceased immediately. Could be an isolated incident. Dunno.
I haven't seen any problems, but when I have the chain apart, the Quick Link gets a thorough cleaning and lube drench.
Even if you used 4 Quick Links for the life of the chain, the convenience would be worth the cost to me.
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Old 11-30-16, 08:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Tim_Iowa View Post
Connex chains are reasonably priced if ordered direct from Europe.
From whom do you buy them in Europe?

I've lived in CR. I remember biking in winter on roads that weren't plowed, the snow mashed down to that semi-ice, being unable to stop or turn. I'm glad for the motorists who looked out for me, especially those backing out of the driveway who saw me in time. The memories make living in Albuquerque more pleasant.
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Old 11-30-16, 09:10 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
I used KMC quick links on Shimano CN-6701 Ultegra chains for awhile, and found that the link stretched faster than the rest of the chain-- I would go through 2 links during the life of one chain. The chain behavior was so odd I often thought there was something wrong with my cassette or chainrings. It was admittedly several hundred miles before I thought to change the KMC link, at which point all odd chain behavior ceased immediately. Could be an isolated incident. Dunno.
I started using Superlinks (from which the SRAM & KMC link is copied) with Shimano chains back in the '90's.
All was well until around 2000 when Superlink produced a bad batch that would wear out in ~200 miles!
(Deep grooves formed in the pins, effectively lengthening the link.)
By that time, SRAM had started producing the "PowerLink" so I switched to them, still using Shimano chains.
Then I decided it was silly to be buying the link separately, so I started using SRAM chains.
Since then, I use SRAM or KMC, depending which I can find for the better price.
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Old 11-30-16, 09:26 PM
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Just be aware that if you do have a problem that neither company will back you up on unauthorized use. You are on your own. We do it all of the time though.
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Old 11-30-16, 10:02 PM
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I've never paid more than $25 per chain, or had one of any brand last longer than about 3.5 months, so I'm not really concerned about any sort of mfr. support. I just wanted to note that KMC links apparently wear more quickly than Shimano chains. I'm trying out a SRAM PC-1071 right now, I'll see how it holds up.
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Old 12-01-16, 01:03 PM
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Originally Posted by RandomTroll View Post
From whom do you buy them in Europe?

I've lived in CR. I remember biking in winter on roads that weren't plowed, the snow mashed down to that semi-ice, being unable to stop or turn. I'm glad for the motorists who looked out for me, especially those backing out of the driveway who saw me in time. The memories make living in Albuquerque more pleasant.
I prefer bike-discount.de. They have great prices on Shimano stuff, dynamos & lights, Schwalbe tires, and Connex chains. They charge a flat ~$20 shipping (depending on the exchange rate), so it's a good value to save up and place a large order.

I ordered from Bike24.de once, but they messed up the same order twice.
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Old 12-01-16, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by RandomTroll View Post
I've lived in CR. I remember biking in winter on roads that weren't plowed, the snow mashed down to that semi-ice, being unable to stop or turn. I'm glad for the motorists who looked out for me, especially those backing out of the driveway who saw me in time. The memories make living in Albuquerque more pleasant.
Yeah, winters can be pretty dreary here. Thankfully, fat bikes are reclaiming winter for cyclists. I bought one a couple years ago and I love it for winter commuting, winter exploring, and all-year MTB trails.

Still have to watch out for cars, but thankfully my commute is only 4 miles, mostly on a MUP.
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Old 12-01-16, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Tim_Iowa View Post
I don't buy Shimano chains for that sole reason.

I like to remove my chain every month or two for cleaning**, so I buy KMC or Wippermann/Connex chains that have re-usable quick links. Connex chains are reasonably priced if ordered direct from Europe.

Connex chains have the best quick link (they call it a "connex" link) because it can be opened completely without tools.
I've used those links on other-brand chains without issues. The "connex" links are available separately.

**my favorite chain cleaning technique:
1) open the quick link and run the chain into a clean spaghetti sauce jar
2) add about 1/2 inch of degreaser (I use El Duke, which is biodegradeable/non-toxic. Simple Green is good too)
3) cap the jar and roll on its side to wash the chain
4) add water, shake, rinse, repeat
5) add dish soap, shake, rinse a bunch
6) remove clean chain from the jar, dry with towel
7) replace chain on bike and lubricate
Wouldn't you still have water in your chain?


People will often oven bake or leave the chain out in the sun for hours after Step 6 and before Step 7.
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Old 12-01-16, 06:58 PM
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Originally Posted by Tim_Iowa View Post
I prefer bike-discount.de. They have great prices on Shimano stuff, dynamos & lights, Schwalbe tires, and Connex chains. They charge a flat ~$20 shipping (depending on the exchange rate), so it's a good value to save up and place a large order.

I ordered from Bike24.de once, but they messed up the same order twice.

I have ordered multiple times from Bike24, often large orders and I am pleased to say I have never had a problem.


An order I had with Rose Bikes somehow saw the two Abus Chains that go with Frame Locks never make it to my door, but I contacted them and they resent them straight away. Awesome service that.


Whilst I am yet to order from Bike-discount.de, they have great prices, so I will do so for sure in the future.


Of the 3 German stores, Bike24 has the largest range and is very price competitive, Rose Bikes often has obscure and unusual items one can order and on the whole seems slightly cheaper than Bike24 and Bike-Discount.de has the most limited range, but perhaps the best pricing.
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Old 12-02-16, 11:34 AM
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Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
Wouldn't you still have water in your chain?


People will often oven bake or leave the chain out in the sun for hours after Step 6 and before Step 7.
I dry the chain very thoroughly with a towel (while bending the links), so I think I get most of the water. The rest should flow out with the lubricant.

But I have heard of using an oven or heat gun to dry out the chain. I'll try that next time.

Another suggestion is to use WD-40 before lubricant, because WD-40 is made to displace water.

Originally Posted by ColonelSanders View Post
I have ordered multiple times from Bike24, often large orders and I am pleased to say I have never had a problem.


An order I had with Rose Bikes somehow saw the two Abus Chains that go with Frame Locks never make it to my door, but I contacted them and they resent them straight away. Awesome service that.


Whilst I am yet to order from Bike-discount.de, they have great prices, so I will do so for sure in the future.


Of the 3 German stores, Bike24 has the largest range and is very price competitive, Rose Bikes often has obscure and unusual items one can order and on the whole seems slightly cheaper than Bike24 and Bike-Discount.de has the most limited range, but perhaps the best pricing.
I agree, Bike-discount.de has great prices but less selection.

My order from Bike24 got shipped to the US, but returned to Germany for an undisclosed "delivery error".
Bike24 re-fulfilled the order, but managed to get the contents wrong in the process.
The contents caused the package to break open in transit.
They charged me the difference in contents (even though it was their mistake) and it took a lot of hassle to get it all figured out.
The hassle was much worse due to language, time zone, currency, and legal differences.

Dealing with this removed any of the benefit from ordering overseas. So, I stick with bike-discount.de, which has provided flawless service.
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Old 12-03-16, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by RandomTroll View Post
... I used a chain tool until recently (when, for the first time in 55 years of bicycling, a re-installed pin failed) so I have no experience...
I was tempted to point that out, too, but I didn't want to start another debate about wonderlinks/missing links etc vs re-using pins. I, too, have been riding almost half a century and I had no idea these connecting links existed until this past year. Now I'm afraid to ever use my expensive chain tools ever again.
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Old 12-03-16, 07:54 PM
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I buy KMC chains, usually from Ribble. Shipping is free if you spend enough, and they also have good prices on Continental tires. I have never had a problem either with Ribble or with the KMC links. They can be opened without tools, but it is tough the first time or two.
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Old 12-03-16, 10:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Papa Tom View Post
I was tempted to point that out, too, but I didn't want to start another debate about wonderlinks/missing links etc vs re-using pins. I, too, have been riding almost half a century and I had no idea these connecting links existed until this past year. Now I'm afraid to ever use my expensive chain tools ever again.
I always bought cheap chain tools. People who sound like they know better than I do claim that the pins on new chains are made in such a way ('peened', I believe: slightly widened on the ends over the outside of the chain) that they don't re-install properly. I kept on using my chain tool for all those years and getting away with it, but my 'touch' is failing: I have a hard time getting the pin installed so it doesn't stick, and I had an annoying recent failure.

I bought a cheap 'wonder-link' tool, the Evo, for $8. The ease of use makes it worthwhile to me. When 'wonder-links' were invented one couldn't re-use them; now one can, at least most models.
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