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Post Info TOPIC: Cutting and fitting a new chain

Super Guru

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Posts: 8447
Cutting and fitting a new chain

I often speak to customers on the phone about the mysteries of chain fitting and remembered that I included a "show and tell" in the last project bike thread so I have started this new thread to make it easier to find.

The chains I use (and sell) are Renthal R3 116 link ones so it needed to be shortened for the 13/48 sprockets I used on the project bike.

First up is to work out how many links to cut off. I do this by putting the rear wheel fairly near the front of its travel but not so much that the tyre interferes with the swing arm.  I then thread the chain through and check where to cut . Make sure that you leave two "inner" links so that you can then join them with the split or rivet link supplied with the chain.

Project bike - fitting chain 003.jpg  

Although some chain breakers can cut the chain without grinding off the rivets I always get the grinder out. I have found some fantastic little cutting discs for the Dremel so that's what I use.

Project bike - fitting chain 004.jpg

I put newspaper around the link I am cutting to catch the metal filings.

Project bike - fitting chain 005.jpg

The link virtually falls apart then with just a bit of help from a chain breaker.

Project bike - fitting chain 007.jpg

Project bike - fitting chain 009.jpg

I prefer to use rivet links as shown below. The link comes with four O ring seals.

Project bike - fitting chain 010.jpg

Although not usually necessary, it is possible to help the link fitting process along with a press as pictured below. 

Project bike - fitting chain 014.jpg

I then move the chain back onto the rear sprocket which gives just a tiny bit more room to get pliers onto the split link to pop it into place.

Project bike - fitting chain 015.jpg

It should then be a simple job to push the split link on.

Project bike - fitting chain 016.jpg

This is what the finished job should look like with the sprung ends of the split link caught nicely in their groove. Remember to keep an eye on the link as it will wear to a razor edge when it might pop off. I find that a chain and rear sprocket last two front sprockets so, as a matter of course, I just fit a new split link when I fit the 2nd front sprocket .

Project bike - fitting chain 018.jpg

Job done!

Hope that helps somebody.



Exeter, Devon, UK

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