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On the market for a new chain - Suggestions?

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On the market for a new chain - Suggestions?

Old 11-25-22, 03:32 PM
  #26  
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Thanks, Datlas. Your post was very helpful. The other thing I noticed about counterfeit items is the box. Like your attached photo, the colors on the counterfeit box are dull and the printing looks like it came off an inkjet printer.
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Old 11-25-22, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by ClydeClydeson View Post
In my experience, 'chain checker' tools are terribly inaccurate, although usually they indicate much more wear than is reality, not less wear. There are many reports of chain-checker tools that indicate a new-in-box chain is worn to the point of needing replacement. I use a ruler or tape measure to measure the distance between 12 links. It just seems like 9000 km is a unusually long life for a chain.
9000km doesn't sound like too much with a good lube - things like Silca / Ceramicspeed / actual waxing should be easily able to do it. Of course, weight, riding conditions and all that are going to influence the story. I've got about 6500km on my current chain and it's really fine. Occasionally I swap to a fairly fresh race chain and there's no difference in length or shifting.
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Old 11-25-22, 03:46 PM
  #28  
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Doesn't wattage come into play for chain wear. 9000kms with average of 200w vs. 9000kms at average of 100w, etc?
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Old 11-25-22, 04:02 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
As title say, I am on the market for a new chain. My current one - KMC X11SL - that came factory equipped on my TCR finally reached the end of its life (0.5% wear) after 9000kms (5600mi) of usage. No complaints about it except that I always found it to be noisier than the other ones I've used in the past.

I've narrowed down my choices to these two. Any thoughts on them or any other ones I should be looking at?

1) Shimano DA (CN-HG901) - Good option & on sale right now
1) Wippermann Connex 11SX - Seems to be better than DA, but also more expensive

I don't mind getting less lifespan if I can have a quieter drivetrain.

Thanks!
Not on your list, but I’ve been using YBN chains and they’re quiet and long lasting
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Old 11-25-22, 05:28 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Doesn't wattage come into play for chain wear. 9000kms with average of 200w vs. 9000kms at average of 100w, etc?
It’s a factor. But maintenance (keeping it clean and lubed) probably matters more.
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Old 11-26-22, 07:29 AM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
We're going off topic here, but I don't see why/how a 11sp chain that has not reached 0.5% wear mark would prematurely wear drivetrain components, regardless of the mileage on it.
Some brands, like Campy, can show little elongation, when measured properly, pin to pin over a 12" length, or full length, but still exhibit extreme roller and side clearance wear. I used a Campy 10 chain for 6,000 miles and it showed far less than 0.5% elongation. A new chain skipped on two of the most used sprockets after only 6,000 miles on the cassette. The new SRAM AXS 12 speed chain may do the same thing. Some people are reporting little wear after 6,000 miles. That's impossible.

All cassettes and chain rings eventually wear out. If you repeatedly switch from a worn chain to a new one, eventually you'll get new-chain skip on the cassette or chain suck on the chain rings. If you had a chain with only a few hundred miles on it, it wouldn't skip on the most worn sprockets.
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Old 11-26-22, 01:37 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by DaveSSS View Post
Some people are reporting little wear after 6,000 miles. That's impossible.
ZFC measured over four times difference in chain wear between the best lubes and the typical bike shop chain lube.
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Last edited by Branko D; 11-26-22 at 02:07 PM.
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Old 11-26-22, 03:56 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Branko D View Post
ZFC measured over four times difference in chain wear between the best lubes and the typical bike shop chain lube.
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I didn't mention anything about chain lubes. In general, 6,000 miles will result in a worn out chain. Usually far less than that. Maybe include a link to whatever you're talking about.
My point is that a chain can be worn out with far less than 0.5% elongation. Most chain wear tests, only measure elongation, which is WRONG.
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Old 11-27-22, 10:56 AM
  #34  
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Last year, I bought two "Ultegra" chains from Amazon and BOTH snapped after only a few miles of riding. Both were purchased from what appears to be the actual Shimano store on Amazon, at least the listing links back to it. Both chains snapped nowhere near where I had cut them to length and nowhere near the quick link. This is obviously terrible from a safety perspective. I'm certain both chains were counterfeit, a risk I was not aware of at the time. This isn't hype, DO NOT BUY CHAINS FROM AMAZON. Actually, I've stopped buying anything bike-related from Amazon. I don't trust them.

Last edited by Hiro11; 11-27-22 at 11:01 AM.
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Old 11-27-22, 11:44 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
Last year, I bought two "Ultegra" chains from Amazon and BOTH snapped after only a few miles of riding. Both were purchased from what appears to be the actual Shimano store on Amazon, at least the listing links back to it. Both chains snapped nowhere near where I had cut them to length and nowhere near the quick link. This is obviously terrible from a safety perspective. I'm certain both chains were counterfeit, a risk I was not aware of at the time. This isn't hype, DO NOT BUY CHAINS FROM AMAZON. Actually, I've stopped buying anything bike-related from Amazon. I don't trust them.
Out of curiosity, and because I didn't know Shimano had an Amazon storefront, I did a little digging. Looks like the Shimano storefront is run by ACK Distributors. Haven't heard of them being one of the main cycling distributorships for Shimano. Anyway, just curious.
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Old 11-27-22, 11:50 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Out of curiosity, and because I didn't know Shimano had an Amazon storefront, I did a little digging. Looks like the Shimano storefront is run by ACK Distributors. Haven't heard of them being one of the main cycling distributorships for Shimano. Anyway, just curious.
Good point, I have no idea who is actually running the "Shimano Store" on Amazon. Maybe the ones I got were legit, but I've never had an Ultegra chain snap before. Let alone TWO after less than 100 miles each. I've just glad this neither break happened during a hard effort.
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Old 11-27-22, 12:01 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
Good point, I have no idea who is actually running the "Shimano Store" on Amazon. Maybe the ones I got were legit, but I've never had an Ultegra chain snap before. Let alone TWO after less than 100 miles each. I've just glad this neither break happened during a hard effort.
Correction...looks like the storefront is run by Optivations, but ACK may be the distributor/warehousing 'partner' they reference
https://www.optivations.com/
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Old 11-28-22, 08:03 AM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by Branko D View Post
9000km doesn't sound like too much with a good lube - things like Silca / Ceramicspeed / actual waxing should be easily able to do it. Of course, weight, riding conditions and all that are going to influence the story. I've got about 6500km on my current chain and it's really fine. Occasionally I swap to a fairly fresh race chain and there's no difference in length or shifting.
I agree with you. I do believe that people are getting poor lifespan because of poor maintenance. I lube mine (wax based lubricant) every 100kms even if the recommended interval is 200kms and I deep clean it every 1000kms. Some people don't care about their chain lifespan and replaces them at specified mileage while others like me want to get as much as possible.

Originally Posted by Sy Reene View Post
Doesn't wattage come into play for chain wear. 9000kms with average of 200w vs. 9000kms at average of 100w, etc?
Of course! A stronger rider will stretch its chain much faster. Newton's third law!
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Old 11-28-22, 08:27 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
I do believe that people are getting poor lifespan because of poor maintenance. I lube mine (wax based lubricant) every 100kms even if the recommended interval is 200kms and I deep clean it every 1000kms. Some people don't care about their chain lifespan and replaces them at specified mileage while others like me want to get as much as possible.
Chains are cheap, my time is valuable.
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Old 11-28-22, 09:21 AM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by sshakari View Post
recently switched to Ultegra CN-HG701.
Interestingly, my wife had been struggling with sloppy, unpredictable shifting on her road bike for several months, despite having a brand new Shimano Ultegra cassette and chain installed along with a tuneup...and then a follow-up tuneup by a different mechanic...and then another follow-up tuneup by a still different mechanic! Finally the fourth mechanic got it dialed in...but one of his comments was "Those Ultegra chains don't last as long as many other brands because long before they start to show wear from any of the traditional chainwear indicators, their side plates have bent or twisted slightly due to all the weight-reduction sculpting, so they no longer shift smoothly." He replaced the Ultegra chain -- which had less than 2,000 miles on it -- with a KMC chain.
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Old 11-28-22, 09:40 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Chains are cheap, my time is valuable.
^ This is actually Newton's Third Law.
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Old 11-28-22, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by tomato coupe View Post
^ This is actually Newton's Third Law.
No, that's the law of least effort
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Old 11-28-22, 05:46 PM
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
No, that's the law of least effort
Oh, I'm willing to put in some effort -- when riding my bike, for instance. But why should I work so hard to prolong the life of an inexpensive and easily-replaced item?
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Old 11-28-22, 08:06 PM
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Where are people buying the Connex chains? I have new chains on both of my bikes, but I’ll probably need to get more next year and would like to give these a try. I am not interested in eBay or Amazon vendors - just don’t trust them after seeing the fake chains thread. Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-29-22, 02:15 AM
  #45  
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I can't tell the difference between kmc, shimano, durace, sram chains and I usually have 3 on rotations. I soak my chains to clean them so I need a few chains.

Maybe if I only used one chain I would notice how long it wears or how quit it is etc. dunno. I take off my chain once a week. There's always a big difference putting on the cleaned oil chain vs the dirty one week old chain with 100+ miles on it.
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Old 11-29-22, 06:18 AM
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I have had both SRAM, Shimano, KMC and Campagnolo chains.

1. All look, feel, sound and work identical to me.
2. A new chain always feels, looks and sounds better than a worn chain, that's the only thing I can tell.
3. I like KMC because of the missing link, and they are usually pretty affordable for lightweight chains
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Old 11-29-22, 07:42 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Chains are cheap, my time is valuable.
Using a top shelf lube makes chains last longer, saves watts and they're actually cleaner, all at no extra effort. The only downside is price.

When I went from "whatever is in the shop" to Squirt my chains started living longer. Further change to Ceramicspeed UFO made the whole drivetrain cleaner and again extended chain life. All for the same effort.

Places like ZFC and others who test this stuff do the cycling world a favour.
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Old 11-29-22, 01:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
Last year, I bought two "Ultegra" chains from Amazon and BOTH snapped after only a few miles of riding. Both were purchased from what appears to be the actual Shimano store on Amazon, at least the listing links back to it. Both chains snapped nowhere near where I had cut them to length and nowhere near the quick link. This is obviously terrible from a safety perspective. I'm certain both chains were counterfeit, a risk I was not aware of at the time. This isn't hype, DO NOT BUY CHAINS FROM AMAZON. Actually, I've stopped buying anything bike-related from Amazon. I don't trust them.



Amazon is almost aliexpress now :/

Most of the time when I search for something specific it returns 99% not what I want and it's always from some overseas no name company.
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Old 11-29-22, 01:46 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by Koyote View Post
Chains are cheap, my time is valuable.
Originally Posted by Branko D View Post
Using a top shelf lube makes chains last longer, saves watts and they're actually cleaner, all at no extra effort.
Using a top shelf lube is not where the extra effort comes in -- it's lubing your chain every 100 km and deep cleaning it every 1000 km to eke out extra mileage. That's what the "my time is valuable" is about.
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Old 11-29-22, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by tomato coupe View Post
Using a top shelf lube is not where the extra effort comes in -- it's lubing your chain every 100 km and deep cleaning it every 1000 km to eke out extra mileage. That's what the "my time is valuable" is about.
Yeah, I don’t bother trying to eke every last mile out of a chain. Hell, how would I even do that, when the bf brain trust can’t agree on how to best measure chain wear?

I just replace a chain when it seems to be getting a bit worn. But then, $40 for an Ultegra chain isn’t a big deal to me.
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