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Is it safe to use a chain with tight spots?

  #1  
Old 05-22-2010, 02:52 PM
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Default Is it safe to use a chain with tight spots?

Just like the title says, I have discovered that the chain I have on the bike has tight spots in it, so the slack will be like 1" in one spot, then I'll turn the wheel a bit and it'll be 2"+, and so on. I cleaned and lubed it as best I could, which helped some, but the tight spots are still definitely there. I do plan on replacing the chain and sprockets soon, but in the meantime is it still safe
A. to use the current chain?
B. for the tension, is it better to err on the side of too loose or too tight (both in general and in this specific case)?
My gut feeling is too loose is better due to less strain on the transmission, but I sure as hell don't want the chain to skip a tooth or come off all together either.
thanks guys.
 
  #2  
Old 05-22-2010, 02:55 PM
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A yes, but keep it well lubed
B Too loose is probably better but both aren't good for the bike or the chain....
That's a helluva change in tension - 1"-2" hoooo.
Change it as soon as you can.
 
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Old 05-22-2010, 03:24 PM
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Random question: Don't mean to highjack the thread, but Im de-greasing my front chain/sprocket/housing area and was wondering if it is ok to coat the entire area (sprocket/chain/housing etc..) in degunk engine bright? Area pictured below. I plan on spraying the whole housing with foamy engine bright, scrubbing and wiping down, and then rinsing the area with water. Is it safe to do that in this front sprocket and housing area?

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/l...and/Chain3.jpg
 

Last edited by 600F4inoober; 05-22-2010 at 03:48 PM.
  #4  
Old 05-22-2010, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by 600F4inoober View Post
Random question: Don't mean to highjack the thread, but Im de-greasing my front chain/sprocket/housing area and was wondering if it is ok to coat the entire area (sprocket/chain/housing etc..) in degunk engine bright? Area pictured below. I plan on spraying the whole housing with foamy engine bright, scrubbing and wiping down, and then rinsing the area with water. Is it safe to do that in this front sprocket and housing area?

http://i291.photobucket.com/albums/l...and/Chain3.jpg
I'd say no. I'd think the degreaser / water could get into areas that do need lubrication and remove it. When I do my chain maint and when I replaced the sprockets on my F3, I used WD-40 and a toothbrush to clean that area.
 
  #5  
Old 05-22-2010, 04:25 PM
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or even kerosine/ or a commerical chain cleaner.
 
  #6  
Old 05-22-2010, 06:45 PM
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Thanks Shadow for the advice. Yeah its crazy how much of a difference there is. I only got the bike about 5 months ago w/30k on the clock, and it appears to be the stock 525 size and gearing, so it may even be the original chain. At first I thought it was fine because its nowhere near the "replace" marks on the adjusters when I adjusted it, but that was before noticed it had the nasty tight spots..
 
  #7  
Old 05-23-2010, 12:44 AM
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1" of slack is not really tight. That is where the manual states the slack should be (25 - 35mm or 1 - 1 3/8").

However, having like 2+ inches of slack is too much. If your chain adjustment indicator is nowhere near the replace mark, then you should measure the slack and adjust your chain accordingly.

This may sound silly, but measuring your actual slack is important if you are new to chain adjustments. I did it. Basically, get a tape measure or ruler or whatever you like and hold the measuring device in a stationary position and lift your chain to measure. I usually do the same spot for the top and bottom part of the chain (at where you have the measuring device). If your tight spots have slack at about 1", then you are okay. If your loose spots of slack are really above 2 inches, then you've got a problem.

When adjusting your chain, always adjust based on tight spots. For every tight spot (tight as in less that one inch of slack), loosen and lengthen. Once all or your tight spots are gone, re-measure the slack (and specifically at the spots where there is a lot of slack) and if there are spots with more than 1.5", you should be ready to replace your chain and sprockets.

I hope this helps, but always remember, if you question the life of any part, replace it, especially when you've taken over ownership of someone else's vehicle.
 
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