Chains

Ok, I have a question about chains. Seems chains have changed over the years.
On my tandem pro, does it matter what chain is used for the captain? That chain never changes gears...curious more than anything. What is proper chain for rear stoker position with the 27 gear drivetrain?
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Comments

  • I wonder if anyone else has broken their 10 speed KMC X10 chain? In 35 years I've broken two chains, first time an 8 speed because I screwed up and cross shifted. TOTALLY MY fault!! Never cross shifted again never broke a another chain. Till the other day....

    The second time was the other day just normal shifting to a lower gear in back while in low front. Just wondering if the 10 speed chains are "as strong" as any "old school" chains? Glad i carry a chain tool and spare master links was able to fix and continue on.
  • Define cross shift please Thanks, from
    Mister Dumas. :D
  • Basically it's using the following gears: A. Large chainring in front with large bear in the back, or B. Small chainring in the front with small gear in the back. These situations can pull the chain "sideways" and can cause it to break especially if one has much pressure on the pedals. This is a good explanation of the term:
    http://road.cc/content/feature/213468-cross-chaining-it-really-all-bad

    Hope this helps.
  • cross-chaining probably has little effect on a trike since the length is about 2.5 times that of 2-wheelers. considering twisted chain is the norm for the cruzbike and what sram has to say on the subject, thinking cross-chaining is more an aesthetic than practical issue, same category as removing caps from valvestems.
  • So no one here has ever had a broken chain on their trike? ONLY bikers break chains because of....................?? What then causes the broken chain JamesR ? Just wondering.
  • So no one here has ever had a broken chain on their trike? ONLY bikers break chains because of....................?? What then causes the broken chain JamesR ? Just wondering.

    Chains break when one of the components in the chain fail due to wear, abuse or lack of chain maintenance.
  • edited September 6
    Guess was lucky on all the 20+ years riding an MTB, never had those issues and am sure would have crossed gears a few times. Shimano Deore / Biopace setup.

    On a trike would think that would not occur due to the length of the chain, more flex/give.
  • Ok if you guys say so. NO chain ever breaks because it was cross shifted/cross chained and doing an extreme effort on the crank arms that "could" break the chain?
  • another +1 for trikes! long, long time ago had a schwinn 26-incher single speed [3 speed were quite exotic back then]. standing up, making speed when the chain broke. not good atall to land on the crossbars instead of the seat. kinda hard to steer the bike to a grassy spot for a landing in that position.
  • Maybe I'm lucky but having owned 8 motorcycles (3 dirt), at least 30 bikes/trikes and a couple chain saws I've never broken a chain. I worn them out/stretched them due to abuse but not broken. As a kid I doubt I ever oiled or adjusted a chain and most of the bikes sat outside in the weather.
  • JamesR wrote: »
    another +1 for trikes! long, long time ago had a schwinn 26-incher single speed [3 speed were quite exotic back then]. standing up, making speed when the chain broke. not good atall to land on the crossbars instead of the seat. kinda hard to steer the bike to a grassy spot for a landing in that position.

    Boys and cross bars. We all learned one way or another. Mine was slipping off a pedal.
  • 10 speed is thinner/lighter than 7/8 speed chain, so maybe a bit easier to break. Have a BBSO2 on my Rover 8 speed and have worn out chains and sprockets w & w/o eassist but none broken..... so far.
  • The chain on my Rover Tandem is probably 3 years old and was in rental service earlier. How does one tell when a chain is near end of life. I'm assuming the BBSHD on order will stress the chain a bit going up hill. Do I just change it our preemptively or "ride it out" ?
  • There's an inexpensive chain measure tool on Amazon that will tell you if it has stretched.
  • Not only chain but rear cassette as well. If it saw a lot of use/abuse as a rental unit could be worn. Easy to check by looking at and inexpensive to change. A few bucks vs 100s for the BBSHD.
    The chainring on the BBSHD will not like a stretched chain either
  • edited October 17
    A ruler or yardstick works very well for measuring wear, especially on a trike, where it's usually possible to measure 2' or more of chain (and the more length measured, the greater the accuracy.) Since all bicycle and tricycle chains are 1/2" pitch, that means that all the rivets should line up exactly on either even inches or half-inches.
    Most chain failures are the result of a faulty connecting link or pin (usually due to improper installation, especially when using connecting pins.) But some few fail when the outer link plate cracks (I have seen two different KMC 10-speed chains fail from that defect.)
    https://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help/when-to-replace-a-chain-on-a-bicycle#article-section-2
  • Thank you! BBSHD kit arriving Friday. Will check the chains as part of installation.
  • edited October 17
    Remember, like they said, if you find the chain has been stretched, you should consider replacing the gear cassette at the same time as replacing the chain if at all possible. They aren't too terribly expensive.
  • Measuring the rivet spacing is very easy.
  • Jrobiso2, the "gear cassette" ... is that the Shimano Nexus 8-speed internal hub?
  • For the Nexus 8 the "cassette" is the sprocket. It's maybe a $10 part and might cost as much as $20 or $30 in labor to have a bike shop swap them out. Or you can do this yourself. It's not hard, but does take a bit of time the first couple of times you do it.

    Using an IGH for the rear also eliminates the possibility of cross chaining, as there is just the one sprocket for the rear. But cross chaining isn't really that much of an issue on a bent trike in any case. The length of the chain run reduces the side torque on the chain dramatically, reducing the effects of wear from this cause.
  • Can you explain why the sprocket needs to be replaced? Did the chain somehow damage it?

    I've ridden bikes my whole life and never found a need to replace one. And, I surely don't want to spend the money if I don't have to.
  • Sprocket teeth simply wear out and eventually the chain will jump especially if matched new. Chain & worn sprocket. Will decrease life of new chain. Generally quite noticeable on the cassette sprocket you use the most i.e. the 11t is most prone to wear
  • Thanks for the help. I grew up in and later ran a large rotating electrical equipment repair shop so I'm all about wear and tear :-) Still learning the tricycle lingo. The technical discussions sound like music to me. Lol!
  • Yup. New chain on old cassette or front rings will wear out that new chain right away. Best to replace them all at the same time, and unless you're using some hyper-expensive cassette or crankset/rings, it shouldn't be a great expense.
  • Can anyone estimate how long a chain will last? How many miles?

    I have to plan for this expense on a retiree's budget.
  • I honestly don't know. I've heard stories of 4000 miles or more on a drivetrain, but I've also heard less.

    But I do know that KMC-Z72 chain (8 or 9 speed) from Amazon is pretty inexpensive. I seem to recall paying $6/box. Expect to need 3 or 4 boxes (3 for straight drivetrains, 4 maybe for ones with derailleurs.

    Cassettes of 11-34 can be had for maybe $30, and I paid $28 for my 22/32/42 front crankset, complete.

    So, as long as my memory is correct, you can replace the drivetrain for maybe $100?

    Anyone who's done it more recently than I, or more often, please update my prices. I bought everything via Amazon.
  • Know a guy that bought chain from Utah Trikes for a bit more expecting the chains to of been connected. Since then he's ordered from Amazon.

    Guess no one seems chain in bulk anymore.
  • Know a guy that bought chain from Utah Trikes for a bit more expecting the chains to of been connected. Since then he's ordered from Amazon.

    Guess no one seems chain in bulk anymore.

    I think t-cycle does!
  • Even assuming a 13' long chain in bulk, you'd still have to break the chain if you use a derailleur, install, and use a master link to put it back together.

    Straight from TT, the straight chains on my Rover (before I modded with a derailleur) contained 3 master links, which means they used 3 boxes of chain and linked them together.

    Face it, everyone should know or learn how to put chains together. I keep a couple of feet of chain, a chain tool, and a few master links in my bike bag for every ride - just in case.
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