Chain breaking too often?

Workshop tales, trials and disasters.
Maintenance tips, techniques and myths.
Technical discussion, description and outright lies

Chain breaking too often?

Postby zoom bean » Fri Jul 18, 2008 4:48 pm

Since changing my bike I seem to be breaking my chain more often than I should, at the moment it's happening more often that I get a flat. Anyone have any advice or tips?

It always seems to happen when I'm heading up a hill also. So I am putting a little bit more pressure on the pedals at the time. It might be me in too high a gear but it has even happened in the very bottom gear. Note; I do have a few more kilos on most people so it may just be the extra weight pushing down at times.

Could the chain be too short? I don't think it can be too long as it's not sagging anywhere. And I figured if it was too short changing gears would be hard but it isn't.

I haven't done that many kms on the chain either. I originally got about 500 kms out of the first chain (KMC Z-9000) and got sick of repairing it so I replaced it with a new chain (dura-ace) but that has also broken twice in the last 500 kms I've done.

Anyone experienced something similar in the past and found a resolution?
User avatar
zoom bean
 
Posts: 215
Joined: Wed May 21, 2008 7:14 pm
Location: Cronulla, NSW

by BNA » Fri Jul 18, 2008 4:56 pm

BNA
 

Postby MJF » Fri Jul 18, 2008 4:56 pm

8,300km on the bike, > 110kg, I've never broken a chain. Although I did replace the original chain at ~ 5000km.
MJF
 
Posts: 972
Joined: Sun Jan 14, 2007 8:18 pm

Postby Kalgrm » Fri Jul 18, 2008 5:04 pm

It sounds like you're placing the chain under too much stress (ie you're stronger than you think). Try using a smaller gearing and pedalling faster for any given speed. So instead of mashing up the hills at a cadence of about 40, try spinning faster at around 90 RPM.

Cheers,
Graeme
Think outside the double triangle.
---------------------------------------
My web site: www.scenebyhird.com
---------------------------------------
The Bicycle Transportation Alliance
User avatar
Kalgrm
Super Mod
Super Mod
 
Posts: 9236
Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 5:21 pm
Location: Spearwood, 9km SE of Fremantle, WA

Postby LuckyPierre » Fri Jul 18, 2008 5:35 pm

If you're breaking your chain, I suspect that there's something dicey about the way you installed it - I've never 'broken' one, but I've had one fail (come apart) because I pushed the joining pin in too far.
Maybe you could try a 'joining link' - Connex and SRAM make them, although Shimano are moving to them too - for a while and see if that works out for you.
Litespeed Classic - 3Al/2.5V titanium tube set, Record 9-speed groupset, Open Corsa Evo CX
Alchemy Diablo - Columbus Zonal tubing, Ultegra 9-speed groupset, UltraGatorskins
Gitane Rocks T1 - U6 tubing, Deore/XT groupset, CrossMarks
User avatar
LuckyPierre
 
Posts: 1432
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2006 4:37 pm
Location: Canberra, ACT

Postby LuckyPierre » Fri Jul 18, 2008 5:38 pm

ps. I've done over 20,000 km on DuraAce chains in the last two and a half years without any problems.
Litespeed Classic - 3Al/2.5V titanium tube set, Record 9-speed groupset, Open Corsa Evo CX
Alchemy Diablo - Columbus Zonal tubing, Ultegra 9-speed groupset, UltraGatorskins
Gitane Rocks T1 - U6 tubing, Deore/XT groupset, CrossMarks
User avatar
LuckyPierre
 
Posts: 1432
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2006 4:37 pm
Location: Canberra, ACT

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Jul 18, 2008 5:41 pm

Kalgrm wrote:It sounds like you're placing the chain under too much stress (ie you're stronger than you think). Try using a smaller gearing and pedalling faster for any given speed. So instead of mashing up the hills at a cadence of about 40, try spinning faster at around 90 RPM.

Cheers,
Graeme


I would be breaking a chain every ride then :D :lol: ...suprisingly it is a very rare event.
I think it more likely that it is either a cheap / crap chain or you have an installation problems.
I am over 100kgs (dont have scales at the mo but yes I am sure of it!)and push very big gears,even on climbs...do alot of my efforts on steep short climbs and have never broken a road bike chain.I get between 3-6000k out of a chain but I do buy a very good quality chain.
User avatar
toolonglegs
 
Posts: 14461
Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2007 7:49 pm
Location: Somewhere with padded walls and really big hills!

Postby Kalgrm » Fri Jul 18, 2008 6:52 pm

Okay, if TLL has trouble breaking them, there must be something else going on. Anyone who can snap a crank-arm before a chain shows that chains can withstand a lot tension!

So ignore my previous post. I'm full of showtime. :)

Cheers,
Graeme
Think outside the double triangle.
---------------------------------------
My web site: www.scenebyhird.com
---------------------------------------
The Bicycle Transportation Alliance
User avatar
Kalgrm
Super Mod
Super Mod
 
Posts: 9236
Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 5:21 pm
Location: Spearwood, 9km SE of Fremantle, WA

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:19 pm

Kalgrm wrote:Okay, if TLL has trouble breaking them, there must be something else going on. Anyone who can snap a crank-arm before a chain shows that chains can withstand a lot tension!

So ignore my previous post. I'm full of s***. :)

Cheers,
Graeme


DOes that mean I can drag out my favourite photo for a second veiwing :D

Image
User avatar
toolonglegs
 
Posts: 14461
Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2007 7:49 pm
Location: Somewhere with padded walls and really big hills!

Postby Kalgrm » Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:27 pm

Ha! Beat that Zoom Bean! :D
Think outside the double triangle.
---------------------------------------
My web site: www.scenebyhird.com
---------------------------------------
The Bicycle Transportation Alliance
User avatar
Kalgrm
Super Mod
Super Mod
 
Posts: 9236
Joined: Fri May 25, 2007 5:21 pm
Location: Spearwood, 9km SE of Fremantle, WA

Postby zoom bean » Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:03 pm

LuckyPierre wrote:If you're breaking your chain, I suspect that there's something dicey about the way you installed it - I've never 'broken' one, but I've had one fail (come apart) because I pushed the joining pin in too far.
Maybe you could try a 'joining link' - Connex and SRAM make them, although Shimano are moving to them too - for a while and see if that works out for you.

Yeah I suspect that might have been the cause of a few of the breaks. I can get a bit heavy handed at times and think I bent a few links & pushed pins in at funny angles initially. Thought I had fixed all my little errors though up until yesterday.

I am now getting quite good at pushing the pins in and out and making sure the link is lined up right and not pushed too far through. Must be all that practise I have been getting.

I will see how long it lasts this time and then might look at making the switch to a chain with a joining link.

Thanks for the advice all, will also look at keeping the cadence up. Sometimes that isn't possible as I occasinally run out of gears and need to tough it out.

And whoa... you have me beat by a long shot by snapping a crank arm. Impressive work TLL, well done! Although I can't imagine it was too fun riding home one legged, hopefully that didn't happen too far from your base camp.
User avatar
zoom bean
 
Posts: 215
Joined: Wed May 21, 2008 7:14 pm
Location: Cronulla, NSW

Postby Hawkeye » Sat Jul 19, 2008 7:58 pm

If memory serves correctly, he did it in a race. Props to the guy on his wheel who managed to avoid running him over. :lol:
Hawkeye
 

Postby Bnej » Sat Jul 19, 2008 8:37 pm

If you're using a Shimano chain you need to use connecting pins to rejoin the chain - i.e, remove the original pin entirely and replace it with a connecting pin you can get for a couple of bucks at your LBS.

The pins that come in the chain are damaged when you push them out and will not hold the chain properly if you push them back in again. Might get you home but cannot be relied on.
User avatar
Bnej
 
Posts: 2880
Joined: Fri Jun 30, 2006 11:43 pm
Location: Katoomba, NSW

Postby zoom bean » Mon Jul 21, 2008 12:37 pm

Thanks Bnej, that sounds like where I am stuffing up.

Off to the bike shop I go for some connecting pins. Can I manage to walk out with just pins considering my $800 tax return just came through? I somehow doubt it.
User avatar
zoom bean
 
Posts: 215
Joined: Wed May 21, 2008 7:14 pm
Location: Cronulla, NSW

Postby MJF » Mon Jul 21, 2008 2:13 pm

Skip the pins - buy some SRAM power-links. Or equivalent.
MJF
 
Posts: 972
Joined: Sun Jan 14, 2007 8:18 pm

Postby rustguard » Mon Jul 21, 2008 8:00 pm

I've read in touring journals about snapping chains but myself I don't understand how you can snap a well serviced chain. My friend used to race - he is 6'3" and he'd bend all sorts of stuff, but never broke a chain. you shouldn't be able to output enough torque to break a chain they are very robust. If you are loosing a pin that is different.

Allways make sure that you have the same amount of pin sticking out each side, do not press the pin in at an angle. Check to make sure that you dont end up with a 'tight' link. Where you joined it should bend as free as the other links in the chain.
A trick of mine is to get a shim about 0.002" thick and cut a groove in it the width of the pin. When the pin is half way in, back off the chain breaker and insert the shim in-between the inner and outer link on the side the pin is already through. then continue to press the link into position.

If you're using a Shimano chain you need to use connecting pins to rejoin the chain


Disclaimer on shimano chains, manufacturer states to always use a connecting pin, Though I have never had one fail.
I recommend buying a chain with a master link is much simpler to service and install
rustguard
 
Posts: 1324
Joined: Thu Jul 10, 2008 2:31 am
Location: Perth, WA

Postby LuckyPierre » Fri Jul 25, 2008 9:27 pm

I just read this in my weekly feed from RoadBikeRider
"Quick Tip: Shimano Chain Mistake. Here's a follow-up to an item we published a few newsletters ago about loosening a stiff chain link. It comes from Shimano's Wayne Stetina, who says, "Never, never, never flex a stiff link sideways to free it especially for 10-speed, but also for 9-speed chains. We need to get people away from this lazy bad habit when installing Shimano chains. If a Shimano chain does not move freely, the pin is not correctly seated in the back plate. If it is correctly seated, it will automatically be correctly centered. Loosening it (by flexing sideways) may cause the connector pin to pull out of the plate. It will definitely cause a 10-speed chain to fail."
Litespeed Classic - 3Al/2.5V titanium tube set, Record 9-speed groupset, Open Corsa Evo CX
Alchemy Diablo - Columbus Zonal tubing, Ultegra 9-speed groupset, UltraGatorskins
Gitane Rocks T1 - U6 tubing, Deore/XT groupset, CrossMarks
User avatar
LuckyPierre
 
Posts: 1432
Joined: Fri Jul 14, 2006 4:37 pm
Location: Canberra, ACT


Return to The Shed

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: TurnitinBot [Bot]



Popular Bike Shops
Torpedo 7 Torpedo7 AU
Ground Effect Ground Effect NZ
Chain Reaction Cycles CRC UK
Wiggle Wiggle UK
Ebay Ebay AU

“Bicycles BNA Twitter
“Bicycles BNA Facebook
“Google+ BNA Google+
“Bicycles BNA Newsletter

> FREE BNA Stickers
> BNA Cycling Kit