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CHAIN TENSION QUESTION

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I have a 2011 ktm 250 sxf and was wondering what the rule of thumb is for chain tension? Should i be able to fit three fingers underneath the chain?

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That will work if your three fingers are between 55mm to 58mm.

Should I measure from the top or bottom of the chain?

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Should I measure from the top or bottom of the chain?

Bottom of chain, on top of swing arm right at the end of the chain slider. 55mm to 58mm with the chain pulled up tight.

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I use a different method for the non-linkage bikes. I get the rear off the ground, so if the bike has a kickstand or is on a stand its easy. I push down on the chain on top of the swingarm at the end of the chain slider. The chain should almost touch the metal, approx 1/2"-3/4" from touching is about right. If you do it the way Reynolds said to do it and then compare you will see how it should be about the same. I think its easier to do this way. For instance if on the stand and doing maintenance or adjusting the chain or oiling the chain while spinning the wheel, you can just push down on the chain and you are done. No leaning over the bike and loading the suspension and sticking fingers in there.

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I did this chain seem retarded loose

Squat the rear of the bike to where the counter sprocket, swingarm pivot point, and rear axle are in a straight line then tell me how retarded loose the chain is. If you can't squat the rear that much by your self, remove or disconnect the shock.

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Squat the rear of the bike to where the counter sprocket, swingarm pivot point, and rear axle are in a straight line then tell me how retarded loose the chain is. If you can't squat the rear that much by your self, remove or disconnect the shock.

^^^^ This. With bike on a center stand,I remove lower shock bolt and raise swing arm so that swingarm and axle are aligned and the chain is at it's tightest point. If you adjust the chain at it's tightest point so there is a little slack you will be amazed at how loose it is when you have the shock mount installed and bike sitting on the ground.

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Squat the rear of the bike to where the counter sprocket, swingarm pivot point, and rear axle are in a straight line then tell me how retarded loose the chain is. If you can't squat the rear that much by your self, remove or disconnect the shock.

Thats the only way to check chain tension. On the ground, with the rear end squatted.

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KTM bikes do have a loose looking chain for sure.

PDS bikes need it because they have more swing arm travel.

New KTM's are just like Japanese bikes, chain tightness should be identical.

I just think KTM owners are smarter about things like chain tension and as a result, they aren't overly tight like you see most Japanese bikes.

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I always get the chain is loose from non KTM guys, I have the PDS bikes. They just dont know.

Edited by Mike in Fresno

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The 3 fingers between top of swingarm (end of slider) and below chain is with the suspension unloaded (bike on table) or suspension loaded and squatted? I've been following this with suspension completely unloaded.

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The 3 fingers between top of swingarm (end of slider) and below chain is with the suspension unloaded (bike on table) or suspension loaded and squatted? I've been following this with suspension completely unloaded.

Unloaded..

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that is correct, its just whther you check it top or bottom and under chain or over. It all works out the same in the end. If a guy is still unsure then remove the shock as said and make swingarm level and then adjust the chain. Then put shock back on and see where it is with the various push up-down-fingers under etc , so you will see the end result and know in the future.

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