Replacing a chain

Jmetz

Well-Known Member
Ok, just got the gf's bike and because i'm a loser i cleaned it, however i noticed her chain is extremely worse for wear, doesnt run straight i areas due to damage, so it needs replacing.

The question is, how much would i be expected to pay if i went to an LBS and had them do the lot,...... but also, what about if i purchased the chain and did it myself?

Prices and difficulty ratings please :smile:
 
Depends on how worn chainrings are

I wouldn't pay more than a tenner for having the chain fitted (plus the cost of the chain of course) but the money IMO would be far better spent buying a half-decent chain tool (not the £5 affairs that never push out a rivet square) and doing it yourself. Then you'll have the tool for next time.
 

Moodyman

Guru
Process is relatively simple, albeit a little mucky if you don't use gloves.

Plenty of your internet videos showing you how easy it is to do.
 

Moodyman

Guru
rather learn for the future

Better if you learn because if you get a snapped link when miles from home, you can do roadside repair and get yourself home. Otherwise long walk home.
 
OP
Jmetz

Jmetz

Well-Known Member
Im not one for carrying many a tool when cycling myself, just the p***** stuff and thats my lot, who knows maybe i will change my carried kit soon.

Just checked online though and seems there is a nice tutorial on doing it so i intend to by the chain tool this weekend and give it a crack.
 

battered

Guru
Do buy a decent tool, the cheap ones are garbage. I recently helped a mate fit one and using his cheap tool I broke the special rivet, so that was game over till he bought another.

Some of the decent multitools have a chain breaker and they are OK. I can also recommend Sram chains with powerlinks, I prefer them to Shimano and the powerlinks can be opened and reused for maintenance/cleaning.
 
OP
Jmetz

Jmetz

Well-Known Member
Brilliant thanks.

In regards to the replacement chain, i had a quick look on chain reactions and noted that there were numerous different ones.... are they all the same apart from the manufacturer? Or are there some to steer clear of?
 

festival

Über Member
You need to consider a few things before you just fit a new chain.

Firstly, chains,chain rings & rear cogs (freewheel or cassette) all wear together.
If the damaged chain has had a significant amount of wear (there is a simple tool that can measure this) then it will not run on the worn teeth at the rear.
It may engage on some of the lesser used cogs but could be unrideable if not dangerous .
Worn chain rings, while not ideal can be used without affecting the use of the bike, although will excelerate wear on the new chain.
So take it to your local shop ask them to check the chain for wear as well as damage then decide if you are to DIY or pay to have it done.
The labour charge for fitting new chain & rear cogs will be cheaper than buying the tools as a one off.
Maybe get it done for you this time but pick their brains to explain whats been done & how to do it next time.
 

battered

Guru
Bloody hell, some of those prices are outrageous! Park chain cleaning solvent, £10 for a can. Ideal for anyone who doesn't live in a country where petrol or paraffin are available. As for £120 for the Campag 11 speed tool, what does it do, take the bike to the shop and bring it back fixed?
 
OP
Jmetz

Jmetz

Well-Known Member
haha, now i am confused indeed, so are we more in favour of the LBS for this occassion? The damage to this particular chain is i believe caused to her getting the chain trapped between the frame and the crankset.....and then her mothers friend freed it, however im pretty sure this was done with force rather than skill...
 

battered

Guru
You can check the chain for wear yourself if you have a steel ruler or tape measure. It takes a bit longer than the simple go/no go gauge but you can't use a chain gauge to measure up for some shelves.

To do this you measure 12 links of a stretched out chain. A new one is exactly 12 inches, centre of the rivet to centre of the rivet 12 links away. With wear it stretches. Change it at 12+1/16. At 12 +1/8 or worse it's very worn and has prob worn the cassette more than it should.

This can sometimes result in you replacing a chain only to find that it slips on certain gears. At this point you have no choice but to replace the cassette to match the new chain. This recently happened to me and I've replaced the old chain until it wears out completely, I'll then do the lot. For now the cassette looks little worn, surprisingly.

Chainwheels wear slowly (esp steel ones) so unless the wear is visible I'd ignore it.
 

festival

Über Member
Look to be blunt, i'm guessing the bike is not of great quality & has not had a lot of use in terms of wear and tear so its possible that if its only a couple of links damaged they can be removed. If it leaves the chain a little short it would be ok for light occasional use. therefore i refer you to my previous comment, take it to the shop for advice.
 
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