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as the title says! i got my bike back from the dealer and they said that i'll have to change my chain in about 1,000 miles. i checked the tension and it's still good, i still have some travel left in my rear tire to tighten it up even more if i have to.

so what's the dealio?
 

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I usually replace chains when the sprocket is shot, it's stretched all the way (never happened), or the links are kinking up (usually due to neglect :-[)

When the DML is having a group buy is a good time too [smiley=cheeky.gif]
 

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My chain started skipping a little before 10k miles. I switched it out at 10k and have been happy since.

Just bought a 14t front sprocket this week, which is going in today. I'm excited to see the changes...
 
Z

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I know it's about time to change mine because a few of the links are starting to gum up. They don't straighten out all the way like they should.
I'm running the stock chain with almost 11K on it. I'm going to try and make it to 12K before slapping on a new DID chain.
 

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Aluminum sprockets are a disservice.

Why's that? I can understand how steel would be more durable, but whats wrong with aluminum? I suppose my curiousity stems from the fact that i just ordered into the group chain/sprockets buy :)

Kevin
 

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You can check the length - somewhere in the shop manual for my bike ('02 M620ie) it says: stretch the chain and measure the length of 16 links: it should be below 256 mm...
 

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I just replaced my chain at 12K and was surprised that it was starting to bind. It never saw rain, or dirt, it was lubed every 200 miles, and cleaned. I don't do wheelies or burn outs either. Supposedly, they are supposed to last for 18 K with tender lovin care like that !

I did the DID 520 with the aluminum sprocket. Looks nice!

Rideon
 

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Some telltale signs that your chain is dying, from almost 3 decades of living with motorcycle chains:

Links start to kink, see the link noted by the green arrow:

This means the lubrication between the pins and bushings is about gone. It's a bad sign with an O-ring chain, as there's no way to get lube in there past the O-rings. It's the beginning of the end. :( This started happening to my chain at about 8k miles.

Links start to exhibit 'rust', again noted by green arrows:

This means the lubrication between the pins and bushings is totally gone. This rust is NOT due to water, it is due to high load and movement without lubrication. Technical name is 'fretting corrosion', it's a different chemical composition from regular rust. Notice it's a very dark reddish orange, as opposed to the brighter orange of rust you see on steel parts exposed to water.

From my own experience, as well as that of several friends that have spent a similar length of time with bikes, you can clean and lube till your arms fall off, and you will not be able to reverse this condition. It is terminal.

If your chain is like this, you will notice that it has started to 'stretch' quite rapidly. This is due to the material being worn off of the pins and bushings. My chain started exhibiting this condition at about 9k miles. It is now at 10k miles and is 'stretching'.

As soon as your chain starts 'stretching' a lot, it doesn't fit the sprockets correctly anymore, and the loads get more concentrated onto the links immediately adjacent to the tight (drive) side of the chain. This increases the rate of wear. It also begins wearing the sprockets quite rapidly at this point, for the same reasons.

Time to tap the piggy bank for some coin.
 

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Why [are aluminum sprockets a disservice]? I can understand how steel would be more durable, but whats wrong with aluminum? I suppose my curiousity stems from the fact that i just ordered into the group chain/sprockets buy :) Kevin
Hi Kevin,

The short answer is that steel is more durable.

To go on about it... plain aluminum sprockets are simply not acceptable. When I turned wrenches for a living, I have installed them at customers' insistence and have had them visibly worn in a month's time. When the aluminum sprocket wears, I have seen that often, the chain will prematurely wear as well. I can't explain or theorize this; it is my observation from real life customers.

Hard anodized aluminum sprockets are like hard chocolate on a soft serve ice cream cone. A hard outer coating on the sprocket delays the above.

Steel sprockets are not as critical about sprocket alignment. Some people confuse "Wheel alignment" with sprocket alignment. I personally don't care where the wheel is pointed... I want the rear sprocket to point directly up the chain. I talk about my chain alignment on my wheel change page: http://www.ducatitech.com/info/wheelchange.html

Steel sprockets shrug off neglect far better than aluminum sprockets, easily by factor of 10. When I change "chain and sprockets" on our bikes, typically between 12,000 and 15,000 miles, I will note that the sprockets show no noticeable wear. I do not know if it is acceptable to use old sprockets with new chain, so spending my own money, I put on new sprockets with new chains on our road bikes.

I consider aluminum sprockets appropriate for racing use, where the driveline is serviced at a frequency of 50~100 miles and parts are replaced without hestation or regard to price.

As for the regina chain, note that it has solid posts on the "rivet" link which requires a quad stake tool to properly peen over, while DiD has hollow ends on the posts, which is more conventional.

I am somewhat over the top when it comes to conservatism towards reliability as I'm a Ducati rider that isn't afraid to set off on a 400 mile day without hesitation or worry.

;D Chris
 

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Speedog830:

your post on the chain thing is brilliant.


Rideon
 

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Howie & Rideon, thanks for the complements. ;)

Here's some sprocket pics, this rear is way overdue, as is it's mate on the front:



Pics courtesy of one of my local boys. The PO of the bike was clueless, and put a brand new excellent quality chain on those hammered sprockets. Probably ruined the chain in the first 100 miles........

Now here's a couple of pics that are more subtle. Both sprockets are from my XT600, a big 4-stroke single that's particularly hard on the driveline. This chain and sprocket set was unhappy from the start, the chain started stretching almost immediately, and got worse from there. I don't think I even got 2k miles on it. I suspect one of the sprockets was cut a little wrong, but I can't say for sure. I've had good luck with their product save this one, so I'm not slammin' 'em.

Looks decent in the side view on the left, but the view on the right shows a burr on the tip of the tooth (red arrow), made by the rollers smearing the metal from the other side of the tooth.



Here's it's mate, notice in the side view on the left, the slight 'fishook' shape noted by the arrow. The view on the right shows the little 'pocket' that the roller wore into the tooth.



Note that my rear sprocket shown above was aluminum, and I'm 99% sure the essentially toothless one shown at the very top was aluminum as well.
Needless to say, I guess, but I'm not fond of aluminum sprockets on big singles and big twins, they just don't seem able to deal with the pounding.
Fine for 2-stroke dirt bikes and racebikes, but for me the small weight savings just isn't worth the grief.
Just my opinion tho.........
 

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Discussion Starter #18
[smiley=shocked.gif] [smiley=applause.gif]

that was everything and more of what i wanted! thanks speeddog!!!
 
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