re-connecting chains

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re-connecting chains

Postby jules21 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:48 pm

has anyone else tried to connect a chain with pins previously pushed out of the chain to shorten it?

i accidentally cut my new chain too short, so i thought i'd conduct an experiment by reconnecting the 'old' pin (not the special one that shimano chains come with). it didn't work. well, it did for a while, then it popped. i was careful to ensure the pin was properly positioned too - seated nice and flush against both end plates.

ok, so kinda obvious. i've since reconnected it with the special pin (tonight... i hope it works). purely out of curiosity, has anyone tried this, with better success?
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by BNA » Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:54 pm

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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Nobody » Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:54 pm

Plenty of noobs have tried it...oh, you mean with better success.
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Personally I'd be using a KMC quick link. Cheap, effective, reusable (on the same chain), safe.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Mulger bill » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:05 pm

What he said.

The reason Shamino have the special joining pin is they peen the ends of the pins during construction. Pressing them out damages the peened end meaning they won't hold.

Unlike Nobody tho', I'll recommend Connex chains. I've broken plenty of chains from most makers over the years but only one Connex.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby jules21 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:29 pm

thanks guys. i am already using a quick link, but i cut the chain too short. it did cross my mind to use 2 quick links, but i resisted that temptation :)
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Nobody » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:30 pm

Mulger bill wrote:Unlike Nobody tho', I'll recommend Connex chains. I've broken plenty of chains from most makers over the years but only one Connex.
I used to use Connex but changed to KMC as for me Connex 9 speed chains were initially noisy on Shimano cogs like they had to be worn-in for the first 100 Kms or so.

I may have broken a Shimano chain in the '90s (too long ago to remember :oops: ) but I haven't broken any chains in recent history.
Last edited by Nobody on Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Mulger bill » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:35 pm

Sooo, how did you come to cut the chain too short?
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby jules21 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:36 pm

one of them (SRAM?) seems to require pliers to squeeze them together when joining - the good thing about connex (and KMC?) is that you can hand-join them, which is vital for roadside repairs. as i found out today :)
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby jules21 » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:36 pm

Mulger bill wrote:Sooo, how did you come to cut the chain too short?

measure twice, cut once - said someone smarter than me!
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Nobody » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:39 pm

Here comes the KMC sales rep impression. :oops:
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Mulger bill » Sun Dec 30, 2012 9:41 pm

I never had a problem hand joining the SRAM link. You just have to squint and poke no more than 7mm of tongue out of the left side of your mouth :P
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby toolonglegs » Mon Dec 31, 2012 12:46 am

jules21 wrote:thanks guys. i am already using a quick link, but i cut the chain too short. it did cross my mind to use 2 quick links, but i resisted that temptation :)

I have used two connex links a few times... Zero issues. I love their chains, especially due to the amount of different drive train set ups I run.
SRAM joining links are such a pain in the ear that they might as well call them permanent!.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby gabrielle260 » Mon Dec 31, 2012 7:59 am

Apologies if this is hijacking a thread. Toolonglegs, in the last 6 weeks I have snapped a 9 speed chain and an 11 speed chain at the Connex joining link. Like you I am a big, strong rider putting lots of power through the drive chain.
The bike shop is mystified, I am mystified... They and I have used Connex joining links for years without problems. Maybe it's a dud batch - but two sizes? Anyway, I'm not such a big fan of Connex now!
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Nobody » Mon Dec 31, 2012 10:31 am

TLL said he has never broken a chain (IIRC). No, I'm not stalking you TLL, I just remember certain things. :)
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby jules21 » Mon Dec 31, 2012 10:49 am

gabrielle260 wrote: Toolonglegs, in the last 6 weeks I have snapped a 9 speed chain and an 11 speed chain at the Connex joining link.

what's actually breaking?
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby toolonglegs » Mon Dec 31, 2012 3:08 pm

Nobody wrote:TLL said he has never broken a chain (IIRC). No, I'm not stalking you TLL, I just remember certain things. :)

Close :lol: .... never broken a chain on a road bike... broken a few mtb ones.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby foo on patrol » Mon Dec 31, 2012 4:00 pm

Don't know about todays' chains but used to do this all the time on my road and track bikes without a problem. :wink:

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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby twizzle » Mon Dec 31, 2012 5:17 pm

foo on patrol wrote:Don't know about todays' chains but used to do this all the time on my road and track bikes without a problem. :wink:

Foo

That's it? Didn't start with 'when I was a lad' either. :P
Yes, the wider bushed chains were a lot more robust. The requirement for a special tool to peen the ends of the campag 11-speed says to me that it's getting beyond the ability of 'average' users. From a safety perspective, that is. Then again, I thought the same with carbon fibre, and the failure stories don't seem that common.


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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby gabrielle260 » Mon Dec 31, 2012 5:26 pm

Jules, I'm not sure what's breaking - the pin or the link itself (by that I mean the bits the pin goes through) but there is not much left when I have examined the chain.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby jacks1071 » Mon Dec 31, 2012 7:49 pm

toolonglegs wrote:
jules21 wrote:thanks guys. i am already using a quick link, but i cut the chain too short. it did cross my mind to use 2 quick links, but i resisted that temptation :)

I have used two connex links a few times... Zero issues. I love their chains, especially due to the amount of different drive train set ups I run.
SRAM joining links are such a pain in the ear that they might as well call them permanent!.


The SRAM powerlock are permanent. If you buy the right pliers though you can decouple them in 2 seconds though.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby rifraf » Tue Jan 01, 2013 9:22 pm

jacks1071 wrote:
The SRAM powerlock are permanent. If you buy the right pliers though you can decouple them in 2 seconds though.

I seem to remember reading somewhere that the later and higher speed chain versions are a use once affair.

As for re-using a pushed out pin, I use 8 speed (on a seven speed setup) sram chain. My bike needs more than a standard amount of links due to long chainstays.
To join the extra piece of chain I just use the pushed out pin and have done it this way for years with no issue. I also use a sram joiner to link the
two ends of the chain together and (luckily it sounds) have had no problems separating them with my fingers alone. I did try using a sram connector with
my last mountain bikes shimano seven speed chain and could never separate the link via hand and had to take it to the shop to get done.
Your thread reminded me of the frustration. :roll:

http://sheldonbrown.com/chains.html
"[The 7 or 8 speed SRAM PowerLink works with SRAM and Shimano chains, probably others too. The 9-speed PowerLink works reliably with SRAM chains, but it reportedly may lead to a Shimano chain's jumping forward.

The 10-speed SRAM Powerlock (note different name) is good for one-time use only: This results in annoying expense, and also the replacement link is shorter than the other links, and can result in a noticable "clunk" each time it comes around. You're better off sticking with 9 or fewer rear sprockets.

You can easily remove a PowerLink by placing the jaws of a needle-nose pliers diagonally across the link to press the side plates out of position. You can use larger-jaw pliers if you form a "Z" of chain links with the PowerLink as the diagonal part. This is easiest if the chain is hanging slack. Park Tool also has a special tool for PowerLink removal, and this is easiest of all.

Shimano chains 9-speed and up are only reattachable by inserting a special. new link pin, using a special tool -- John Allen]"
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby jules21 » Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:07 pm

gabrielle260 wrote:Jules, I'm not sure what's breaking - the pin or the link itself (by that I mean the bits the pin goes through) but there is not much left when I have examined the chain.

this may be insulting to ask so please don't take offence, but is it possible you're not connecting them properly? that's all i can think of - i've used connex links for 1000s and 1000s of km and never broken one. you may be making more power than me but in theory i'm sure they're designed to cope with far more stress than we're putting through them.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby panurge » Wed Jan 02, 2013 1:45 pm

jules21 wrote:has anyone else tried to connect a chain with pins previously pushed out of the chain to shorten it?



Notwithstanding all the good advice on this thread I will say that I've split andrejoined probably 100+ Shimano chains over the last 20 years using one of the regular pins and I've never had one fail on me.
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Nobody » Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:12 pm

It's torque that kills transmissions, a function of weight in this scenario. Most bike chains are good for more than 1 Tonne I've read (IIRC).
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby Nobody » Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:31 pm

panurge wrote:Notwithstanding all the good advice on this thread I will say that I've split andrejoined probably 100+ Shimano chains over the last 20 years using one of the regular pins and I've never had one fail on me.
So what special thing do you do to the regular pins and what do you weigh?
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Re: re-connecting chains

Postby jules21 » Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:57 pm

panurge wrote:Notwithstanding all the good advice on this thread I will say that I've split andrejoined probably 100+ Shimano chains over the last 20 years using one of the regular pins and I've never had one fail on me.

i had two fail on me in short succession! i was careful to ensure both pins were precisely inserted, but the plates still popped off the end of the pins. in one case, i was pushing hard up a hill for a PR on strava - probably 300w (this is just a wild guess - but i'm 80+ kg and my time on a popular segment was top 10-15%).

if i'm doing something wrong i'd be interested to hear..
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