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Sprocket changing...chain size?

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Stock

Front: 15 tooth

Rear: 42 tooth

Chain: 98 link

Shortly

Front: 16 tooth

Rear: 40 tooth

Chain: ?????

I'll be losing 1 tooth total with the switch up...so should I get a 96 link chain or a 98 link? I'm updating it all soon.

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I alway get a chain thats a few links too long and then cut it to fit.

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Probably a 98 - it depends if you have enough rearward travel in your axle block to get the chain slack in spec. In any case, you can always bust a link off the 98.

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Get the 98 link, then if you dont like the gearing, use the stock sprockets and link in hte extra piece. You will be going from a 2.8 to a 2.5 gearing. Very small adjustment for everything you are putting in it?

I hope I am going about it right, but I want to drop the RPMS at each speed in the gears. I.E. - from 60 MPH at 4.5k RPMS to 4 K RPMS. Since my bike is rarely on dirt, i want to increase MPG and shift increments, I feel the gearing is too short per gear when accelerating.

I also have alot of room to play on the axle adjustment, only on setting 3 of 10 on an 8k mile 25 yr. old chain.

Thanks for the help guys.

Do you think I should go to a 38 rear? I'm worried about making it too tall and having issues pulling out with a passenger, and also ruining any chance of slow off-roading I might have.

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I'd go one smaller in the front, them up the rear to match the original gearing as close as you can. Then you will have the stock set up, then just add one more tooth in the front for highways with the longer chain.

This would be 14/39, which would give you your stock gearing almost (2.75 vs 2.80) this would be done with a 14 in front, then go 15 in the front only, do nothing on the back and you will have your 2.6, and if you really want to open it up, go 16 in front for a 2.44! So now you can have stock and with a simple adjustment of only changing the front sprocket for higher sppeds/less RPM. You might be able to do this with the same sized chain as long as its close to the rear of the adjustment on the swingarm, ie 14 to 15 tooth, slide the wheel forward. But if you try the 16 tooth (assuming there is room for it to fit) then you will need to change a chain or add a few links. Its not recommended to have more than 1 link, but the XT isnt exactly a powerhouse, should be OK.

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is the 16/40 setup going to reduce my RPMS in each gear? I want to get a new X-ring chain for peace of mind, since it is very old, and it seems to be needing adjustment after only 400 miles riding, so I think it might be wearing fast even with proper chain lube.

I'm eventually going to go SM with the bike, so I want road gearing more than anything else, but I don't want to make it hard to pull out.

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16/40 is pretty tall already.

That will give you 89% of stock torque and 12% more top speed.

4.5k stock rpms will be 4k, so yes you're RPMs will be lower in each gear at a given speed.

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