Bicycle Chains

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Do you want to know more about bike chains?

All bikes use a drivetrain system through a metal chain joining the pedals with the rear wheel, the driving wheel which transfers the movement to make the bike spin. The cyclist provides energy, which through the pedals and cranks mounted on toothed chainrings, drives a chain that transfers power to the cassette to make the rear wheel move.

There currently exists a wide range of brands, models and qualities of chains, which creates confusion when choosing the most appropriate to replace your existing one. Modern drivetrains are of 8, 9, 10 and up to 11 speeds. In these cases, the most suitable chains are usually of 7-8, 9, 10 and 11 speeds, respectively. The length of a chain will depend on the number of speeds, which will also affect the type of derailleur hanger that will be needed. The width is also variable factor in chains depending on their number of speeds. The more speeds, the narrower the chain will be to shorten the space between sprockets.

It is important before buying a chain to check that it is compatible with the bicycle's chainrings and sprockets, since the chains are different depending on the number of speeds.

In order to keep your chain in top condition it is very important to use lubricating liquids so that the friction of the chain with the teeth of the chainrings and sprockets does not end up damaging the material. If these components are not greased regularly they will end up wearing out and their life will be much shorter.

The best way to grease a chain is to apply the liquid to each link while moving the pedals so that the chain rotates on the chainrings , because if we apply the grease directly to the sprockets, the rear brakes (if they are disc) can be damaged and become totally useless.

The main problem for chains , after dirt, is chain stretch, which occurs faster in chains where the gears are changed and the more misaligned the chain works. The fact that the chain is subjected to lateral stresses since it is not aligned with the chainring and the sprocket causes greater strain on the pins and the rollers of the chain, increasing wear. Because an old chain is longer than necessary, the links do not fit properly between the teeth of the sprocket , which means that, for power purposes, only one hub (the first) performs the transmission of the effort of the chainring to the chain and this causes jumps in the teeth, so a change of chain is required.

Opinions featured in Bicycle Chains

SRAM PC-1130 PowerLock 11 Speed 114 Links Chain
Good chain FROM SRAM
Shimano XT M8100 12-Speed 126 Link Chain
OK but not long lasting
Can't cope with a sandy coastal environment and wears out quicky
Shimano Deore HG53 9-Speed 114 Link Chain
Quality of product
100% for quality
Elite Stainless Chain Connector 6.5 mm 9-Speed
Quality of product
High quality
KMC 11-Speed Chain Link Silver
It’s a link!
Carried as a spare. Quality seems fine.
Shimano Ultegra HG701 11-Speed 126 Link Chain
Unbeatable Quality
High quality and exactly what I required
SRAM XX1 Eagle PowerLock 12 Speed 126 Links Chain rainbow
just what I wanted
Best chain on the market
Connex 10s8 chain 114 links 10 speeds
SRAM 1051 Powerlock 10-Speed 114 Link Chain
Sram chain 10speed
Good price for reasonable product
Shimano HG40 6/7/8-Speed 116 Link Quick-Link Chain
Great price
As described, good quality, works well.
Shimano HG40 6/7/8-Speed 116 Link Quick-Link Chain
What it there for
Suitable as suggested
SRAM 1130 PowerLock 11-Speed 129 Link Chain
Good chain.
Where a chain in very much a consumable item that dictates the life of more expensive chain rings and cassette, it is important to replace your chain when it is worn. More expensive 1170 chains are too expensive and in my opinion the hardening process used for the rollers probably wear gears quicker that the 1130 chain.
Shimano Ultegra 10-Speed 114 Link Chain
Does what it's made for
Fulfills its purpose
KMC 559R 10-Speed Chain Link Silver
Does what it should
Fulfills its purpose
SunRace 6/7-Speed Chain Silver
Cheap and low quality
but functional

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