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Quick Link Failure

Old 12-04-17, 11:47 PM
  #1  
sreuter13
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Quick Link Failure

On my commute home tonight, I started to hear some strange noises from my drive train and skipping gears each pedal stroke. Then, I heard a loud snap and lost pedaling power. When I stopped and looked down, my chain was on the street, along with my chances of making it home on time.

Inspecting my broken chain after a 6 mile push home, I found the quick link had sheared. The link was a 2 piece KMC and the pin in one of the halves came out and allowed the chain to break apart.

Has anyone else had problems with quick links snapping after only about 700 miles of use?
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Old 12-04-17, 11:53 PM
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While quick link failure is pretty rare, it's far from unheard of. It's interesting that your link failed in a way that a normal link would fail, rather than in a way related to it's unique quick link design.

But to keep things in perspective, chains also fail at regular links. So the real question is whether quick link failures account for more than one out of 50 or so chain failures.
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Old 12-05-17, 12:23 AM
  #3  
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did the pin come out of it's half, or the keyhole in the other half?

i've run into a couple loose QL's lately... both KMC brand, new from package.... just sayin'.....

were there any hills to coast down, at least... sorry you had to walk... my worst walk was 17 miles, at three in the morning...about a mile of coasting...
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Old 12-05-17, 01:45 AM
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Nope, never caused me any trouble.


keep in mind a thread like this will get a lot of confirmation bias
as most people who haven't had issues with quick links won't have a reason to complain....

I'd just get a new one and not worry.
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Old 12-05-17, 05:13 AM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by TruthBomb View Post
Why don’t you carry a quick link in your repair kit?
I've done this for a while, but so far (touch wood) haven't had to use it. Another (sadly hindsight) possibility is that if you had a chain tool you could have re-configured your chain... shorter, maybe even single-speed, but you could have pedaled home.
Steve
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Old 12-05-17, 05:41 AM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by sweeks View Post
I've done this for a while, but so far (touch wood) haven't had to use it. Another (sadly hindsight) possibility is that if you had a chain tool you could have re-configured your chain... shorter, maybe even single-speed, but you could have pedaled home.
Steve
I do have a chain tool on a multitool I carry whenever cycling (along with patches, tube etc.). However, I believe a 10 and 11 (and 12) speed chain would require a spare pin at least - not adviseable re-using old pins.

So while a chain tool is good (a chain could break so that a link needs to be removed before placing a quick link), for 10+ speed chains, an extra pin, or a quick link in addition would be a good thing IMO.
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Old 12-05-17, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Slaninar View Post
I do have a chain tool on a multitool I carry whenever cycling (along with patches, tube etc.). However, I believe a 10 and 11 (and 12) speed chain would require a spare pin at least - not adviseable re-using old pins.

So while a chain tool is good (a chain could break so that a link needs to be removed before placing a quick link), for 10+ speed chains, an extra pin, or a quick link in addition would be a good thing IMO.
I also carry the cut-off links from shortening the new chain; using two quick links I can splice in a length of chain to replace damaged links.
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Old 12-05-17, 07:07 AM
  #8  
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Originally Posted by sreuter13 View Post
On my commute home tonight, I started to hear some strange noises from my drive train and skipping gears each pedal stroke. Then, I heard a loud snap and lost pedaling power. When I stopped and looked down, my chain was on the street, along with my chances of making it home on time.

Inspecting my broken chain after a 6 mile push home, I found the quick link had sheared. The link was a 2 piece KMC and the pin in one of the halves came out and allowed the chain to break apart.

Has anyone else had problems with quick links snapping after only about 700 miles of use?
Not me personally but guys is my group got me to carry them, I routinely alternate through 8 bikes, 7&8, 9, 10 and 11 speed, a w/KMC or Sram link in each seat bag.
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Old 12-05-17, 07:20 AM
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Side note.

Shimano makes quick links now.

New Shimano 11 speed chains no longer come with pins but with quicklink model SM-CN900-11


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Old 12-05-17, 07:30 AM
  #10  
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OP, I assume you didn’t have a chain tool on you, and that you now will carry one to avoid 6 mile walks.
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Old 12-05-17, 07:34 AM
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I put 8000 miles on my bent chain with a quick link. Changed out the chain and quick link and again have near 8000 miles on it.

You need to carry a chain tool and at least an extra quick link.
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Old 12-05-17, 07:47 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Side note.

Shimano makes quick links now.

New Shimano 11 speed chains no longer come with pins but with quicklink model SM-CN900-11



Having set hundreds of Shimano pins and connecting links of many brands I'll say that I've seen far more failures of a pin closed chain then a connecting link one.


I would like to see the connecting link halves, I'll be at Full Moon tomorrow through Friday. Andy (who hopes he didn't sell a defective link)
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Old 12-05-17, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Slaninar View Post
However, I believe a 10 and 11 (and 12) speed chain would require a spare pin at least - not adviseable re-using old pins.
Sadly (or not!) I haven't gotten into the world of 10 and 11 speeds, so I can't comment on those. You're undoubtedly right.
I was simply mentioning another possibility, and even if the chain is one that requires a new pin each time (I don't use those... ever), riding gingerly on a precariously reinserted pin probably beats walking a few miles.
Now that this has been brought to light, I expect there will be a few more spare links carried by the readership!
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Old 12-05-17, 07:58 AM
  #14  
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Originally Posted by sweeks View Post
Sadly (or not!) I haven't gotten into the world of 10 and 11 speeds, so I can't comment on those. You're undoubtedly right.
I was simply mentioning another possibility, and even if the chain is one that requires a new pin each time (I don't use those... ever), riding gingerly on a precariously reinserted pin probably beats walking a few miles.
Now that this has been brought to light, I expect there will be a few more spare links carried by the readership!
Steve
I completely agree. My previous post was more of an "addition" (in case someone with an 11 speed chain reads), than a correction.
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Old 12-05-17, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by TruthBomb View Post
Why don’t you carry a quick link in your repair kit?
+1. I've never had a link fail and I've been using them for many years in Wipperman, KMC and Shimano (KMC link) chains. I am careful to install them properly and I rarely disassemble the chain for cleaning so the link is not removed routinely.

When I install a new chain I install a new link along with it but I keep the old ones in my on-bike repair kits for roadside repairs for my bike or someone else's.
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Old 12-05-17, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by TruthBomb View Post
Why don’t you carry a quick link in your repair kit?


Even if it's worn, the quick link from a previously replaced chain will get you home.
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Old 12-05-17, 08:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Slaninar View Post
I do have a chain tool on a multitool I carry whenever cycling (along with patches, tube etc.). However, I believe a 10 and 11 (and 12) speed chain would require a spare pin at least - not adviseable re-using old pins.
It's not advisable to re-use old pins on narrow, modern chains, but if the alternative is walking several miles home, it can still be acceptable as a short-term fix.
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Old 12-05-17, 09:20 AM
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I have to ask: did you buy a cheap multi-pack of KMC master links off Amazon or some other source? I bought a six-pack that much cheaper than you usually see this, and they came in a little baggy, not KMC packaging, and some comments on these "bulk pack" offers indicated that these might be counterfeit. I've since swapped the possibly fake KMC links out in favor of genuine Shimano links.

If you were using surprisingly cheap bulk-pack KMC links it's possible they weren't authentic.

I'll add my voice to the chorus of those with many thousands of miles on master linked chains with never a problem. I do carry a chain tool and an extra set of links in my tool bag though, just in case. I've never self-recovered with it on the road, but I did save another guy's ride one day when his chain broke.
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Old 12-05-17, 09:25 AM
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Originally Posted by SethAZ View Post
I have to ask: did you buy a cheap multi-pack of KMC master links off Amazon or some other source? I bought a six-pack that much cheaper than you usually see this, and they came in a little baggy, not KMC packaging, and some comments on these "bulk pack" offers indicated that these might be counterfeit. I've since swapped the possibly fake KMC links out in favor of genuine Shimano links.

If you were using surprisingly cheap bulk-pack KMC links it's possible they weren't authentic.

I'll add my voice to the chorus of those with many thousands of miles on master linked chains with never a problem. I do carry a chain tool and an extra set of links in my tool bag though, just in case. I've never self-recovered with it on the road, but I did save another guy's ride one day when his chain broke.


One sure way to insure you're getting the real KMC is to buy a Shimano labeled connecting link Andy
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Old 12-05-17, 09:25 AM
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I also keep the old quick links in my saddle bag for emergencies.

Over the past decades I've used two or three quick links out of my saddle bag but always for other people's chains. It amazes me how worn out they are, literally falling apart.

One guy here posted a photo of his KMC Ti Nitride chain with side plates worn to the point where the mushroom heads on the pins were almost completely gone. When it was pointed out he said, "No, it is chamfered." The oddest part was that the chain was immaculately clean.

Maybe the OP can tell us how many miles on the chain vs 700 miles on the quick link. Is it possible that a worn out chain stressed a new quick link to failure?


-Tim-
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Old 12-05-17, 09:34 AM
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Another aside - KMC makes both reusable and non-reusable quick links for 11 speed.
Reusable: M/L-11R » KMC Chain
Non-reusable: M/L-11 » KMC Chain
They also make one with a "Diamond Like Coating" for "Optimal stability", whatever that means.
DLC: M/L-11-DLC » KMC Chain


-Tim-
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Old 12-05-17, 09:42 AM
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Originally Posted by maddog34 View Post
did the pin come out of it's half, or the keyhole in the other half?

i've run into a couple loose QL's lately... both KMC brand, new from package.... just sayin'.....

were there any hills to coast down, at least... sorry you had to walk... my worst walk was 17 miles, at three in the morning...about a mile of coasting...
That is a rough walk home, I feel for you.

The pin fell out of its own half. The notch in the other side actual kept the pin from falling off onto the road.
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Old 12-05-17, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Having set hundreds of Shimano pins and connecting links of many brands I'll say that I've seen far more failures of a pin closed chain then a connecting link one.


I would like to see the connecting link halves, I'll be at Full Moon tomorrow through Friday. Andy (who hopes he didn't sell a defective link)
Sadly I am not in Rochester at the moment. I am on a work term out in California, hence why I did not have all my normal tools with me at the time of failure.

I will definitely get a new quick link (maybe 5) and keep them on person from now on. lesson learned!
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Old 12-05-17, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
I also keep the old quick links in my saddle bag for emergencies.

Over the past decades I've used two or three quick links out of my saddle bag but always for other people's chains. It amazes me how worn out they are, literally falling apart.

One guy here posted a photo of his KMC Ti Nitride chain with side plates worn to the point where the mushroom heads on the pins were almost completely gone. When it was pointed out he said, "No, it is chamfered." The oddest part was that the chain was immaculately clean.

Maybe the OP can tell us how many miles on the chain vs 700 miles on the quick link. Is it possible that a worn out chain stressed a new quick link to failure?


-Tim-
The chain has about 500 more miles on it than the quick link.
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Old 12-05-17, 09:52 AM
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Originally Posted by pdlamb View Post
Even if it's worn, the quick link from a previously replaced chain will get you home.
When I get a new chain I keep the old quick link just for this reason. I actually carry different speed ones in case I need to help someone else.
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