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How do you know when it's time to replace your chain and sprockets? I always keep my chain adjusted and lubed but I still don't want to run the risk of breaking a chain and having to deal with all the problems that will cause but I also don't want to spend the money to replace it if it doesn't need to be replaced.

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Look at your sprockets and see if the teeth are hooked. Also, find out the spec for your chain and check. All chains have a specific length range for a certain number of links. G 

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The teeth start looking like hooks or breaking off, and the chain can be bent in a full circle when it's off the bike.

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The above posts are all good advice.

If that's not enough, you can get chain wear gauges. Most motorcycle owners and techs don't have them, but I do because I work with industrial machinery with all sorts of chains. They are not expensive. 

My .02¢ on chains:  It's definitely worth buying the best quality chain that you can afford. 

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2 hours ago, ohiodrz400sm said:

At the 3 O'Clock position on the rear sprocket, pull the chain away from the gear teeth. If you can expose more than half of a gear tooth then the chain is worn and will wear the sprockets prematurely.

This is what I've always done, simple and quick.  The sprockets should be pretty obvious to the eye.

 

2 hours ago, MaybeMe said:

The teeth start looking like hooks or breaking off, and the chain can be bent in a full circle when it's off the bike.

LOL, yep, when you can tie the chain in a knot like its a piece of rope then you know it's worn.

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Quick question: about how many hours until you notice you will need a chain or sprocket?

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11 minutes ago, Dannyn01 said:

Quick question: about how many hours until you notice you will need a chain or sprocket?

The variance is huge.  If you have a high hp bike and are heavy on the throttle you'll be replacing chains and sprockets every few weeks.  If you have a smaller bike and/or you are really easy on the throttle you can go a long time.  Also, how well you take care of it really factors in bigly.  There is no rule of thumb.

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The variance is huge.  If you have a high hp bike and are heavy on the throttle you'll be replacing chains and sprockets every few weeks.  If you have a smaller bike and/or you are really easy on the throttle you can go a long time.  Also, how well you take care of it really factors in bigly.  There is no rule of thumb.



Makes sense :)

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4 hours ago, cjjeepercreeper said:

The variance is huge.  If you have a high hp bike and are heavy on the throttle you'll be replacing chains and sprockets every few weeks.  If you have a smaller bike and/or you are really easy on the throttle you can go a long time.  Also, how well you take care of it really factors in bigly.  There is no rule of thumb.

Every few weeks? I'm guessing a non O ring and very cheap chain. In mud. 

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If you wait to long the master clip gets wore off then you have problems :facepalm:

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@Dannyn01 Is this for your SSR 150? 

If so, Chinese bikes come with fairly crappy chains. Change it ASAP, before it wears the sprockets prematurely. 

It's probably a 420 or 428 chain, the owner's manual should say. Any name brand chain of mid-range or better will a lot better than what it came with. Personally I would not chose an o-ring chain for that bike due to the excess friction/drag of an o-ring chain, but that's just my opinion, o-ring chain definitely wears out slower.

Do you know how to cut/break it to get the correct link count? 

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[mention=491697]Dannyn01[/mention] Is this for your SSR 150? 
If so, Chinese bikes come with fairly crappy chains. Change it ASAP, before it wears the sprockets prematurely. 
It's probably a 420 or 428 chain, the owner's manual should say. Any name brand chain of mid-range or better will a lot better than what it came with. Personally I would not chose an o-ring chain for that bike due to the excess friction/drag of an o-ring chain, but that's just my opinion, o-ring chain definitely wears out slower.
Do you know how to cut/break it to get the correct link count? 



I was just asking in general, but yes my SR150.
It's held up pretty good so far, I mean I ride in sand where the back tire sinks and the chain is under, mud holes and stuff like that and I don't see any signs of wear. I lube it after every ride. I'll change it when I see wear. Yeah I know how to do that.

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6 hours ago, Flagstaff said:

Every few weeks? I'm guessing a non O ring and very cheap chain. In mud. 

Just giving him an example of the extremes.  Someone that does track several days a week on a 450 and is a very aggressive rider could actually go through chains and sprockets that fast.

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16 minutes ago, Dannyn01 said:

 

 


I was just asking in general, but yes my SR150.
It's held up pretty good so far, I mean I ride in sand where the back tire sinks and the chain is under, mud holes and stuff like that and I don't see any signs of wear. I lube it after every ride. I'll change it when I see wear. Yeah I know how to do that.

 

 

That's good to know. I think SSR makes legit entry level & recreational bikes. My son's next bike may be SR 150 or 189. 

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8 minutes ago, cjjeepercreeper said:

Just giving him an example of the extremes.  Someone that does track several days a week on a 450 and is a very aggressive rider could actually go through chains and sprockets that fast.

This is very true.  Use to go threw couple sets of did non oring chains with sun star aluminum sprockets when I was racing full time. Now tho I have a d.i.d oring chain on my 450 been on since last year . Use to be against orings lol but now that's what I'll get from now on awesome chain :thumbsup:

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For me at a 3rd gear trail cruise normally on a 250 with my son following I can run 3 seasons easily on a set here in Ohio but our season is not as long as others. Just a guess for me 250 hrs but as stated I'm not jumping more than a mole hill around here and that's ok by me, keep a proper adjustment and it'll last a long time

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