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How do I know if my chain is bad? I have a DR 350 and after riding I noticed that the little rollers in my chain were loose on the shafts It's an o ring chain and I thought the lubrication was in these little rollers. My chain isn't that old and it's not stretched beyond its servicable limit (I have wayyy more adjustment) Just wondered if anyone has noticed the same Thanks Brian

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try and lift the chain off from the 3 oclock postion on the rear sprocket ...... if you can get it more than half way off the chain is bad.......

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it's not stretched beyond its servicable limit (I have wayyy more adjustment)

you cannot measure chain "stretch" (they don't really stretch, the pins wear) by the amount of adjustment you have left.

the adjustment can be used to accommodate chains with more or fewer links as well as for compensating for chain "stretch". for example, if you adjusters will allow you to run either a 112 or 114 link chain, and you are running a 112 link, that chain will likely be worn past its service limit way before you would run out of adjustment room.

as mentioned above, try to pull the chain away from the rear sprocket to get a rough idea of how worn your chain is. the proper way is to measure the distance between some number of pins (e.g., 21 for DRZ400). if that distance if over a certain amount (12.57" for DRZs), then the chain is too worn and needs to be replaced.

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It's easy to measure the chain for wear. Put the bike in gear and rotate the rear wheel backwards to put tension on the chain. A brand new 520 chain measures 10" over 17 pins. A conventional chain is worn out when that length exceeds 10 3/16". A sealed chain is worn out when it exceeds 10 1/16". Measuring from the leading edge of the side plates makes this a snap.

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It's easy to measure the chain for wear. Put the bike in gear and rotate the rear wheel backwards to put tension on the chain. A brand new 520 chain measures 10" over 17 pins. A conventional chain is worn out when that length exceeds 10 3/16". A sealed chain is worn out when it exceeds 10 1/16". Measuring from the leading edge of the side plates makes this a snap.

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thank you! i had tried using the numbers off the back of a Vortex sprocket package, but it makes no scense at all. Something about 256mm over 17 links..Well, that is totally impossible as that was only a few inches. Maybe i had been reading it wrong.

I had often done the "pull from 3 o'clock" thing too and lifted rollers to see how bad they were, as well as watching for wear on the sprocket once you can pull the chain away from the rear sprocket. A really worn chain will destroy a new sprocket..

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Great info thank you to all who responded. But I still don't know why the rollers are so loose if there lubed in there than there can't be any lube left (they rattle around on the pins) am I missing something here Brian

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thank you! i had tried using the numbers off the back of a Vortex sprocket package, but it makes no scense at all. Something about 256mm over 17 links..Well, that is totally impossible as that was only a few inches.

For metric users, a new chain measures 254mm over 17 pins. That's equal to 10". Most people in the US don't have a metric tape measure but for those that do, the conventional chains are worn out at 259mm and sealed chains are worn out at 255mm.

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Great info thank you to all who responded. But I still don't know why the rollers are so loose if there lubed in there than there can't be any lube left (they rattle around on the pins) am I missing something here Brian

That's indicative of a lack of lube. Sealed chains can still measure in spec, but have worn out rollers. I have a friend that thinks his x-ring chains don't need lube and he gets about 6 months out them before the outside rollers break. I ride 4x times as much as he does and I get about 2 years out of a DID x-ring, but I lube my chain at least once before every day of moto.

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CamP - Is that technique a sticky somewhere on here? I've never seen it before, and it's a very helpful procedure.

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CamP - Is that technique a sticky somewhere on here? I've never seen it before, and it's a very helpful procedure.

I don't think it's a sticky anywhere, but glad it helps you out.

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That's indicative of a lack of lube. Sealed chains can still measure in spec, but have worn out rollers. I have a friend that thinks his x-ring chains don't need lube and he gets about 6 months out them before the outside rollers break. I ride 4x times as much as he does and I get about 2 years out of a DID x-ring, but I lube my chain at least once before every day of moto.

not to start another "chain lube" deal, but there may be more to the time line than just lube vs. not enough lube. The quality of chains has something to do with the longevity of chains. Cheap.. don't last as long. Running woods and all the sand we have here in FL on a crf450, i got no more life (about 6 months) life out of my chains riding 4-5 hours a week in the woods/sand. Same after i switched to nothing but wd40, but the chains and sprockets stayed way way cleaner and no build up of gunk. They may have lasted longer.. never actually "measured" the time, but going through my records of purchases from Vortex and Pit-bull and RMATV, i was ordering chains around the same times and changing in similar months (i keep pretty good maintinence records).

I am gonna try a NO LUBE TEST on the next RK narrow chain im getting from vortex. :thumbsup: I just installed hour meters on BOTH my crf450's, and have brand new chains on em. Already started with the wd40 only routine as usual, but will check hours, then the next chain will check hours after NO LUBE.. :confused:

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I would stick with your WD40 melk-man. My observations of the "no lube" chain maintenance technique indicates that the rollers tend to gall, get loose, then break off.

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Brian...

Just in case you are not aware of the issue. Do not pressure wash your chain. If you have been doing that, it could be why the grease was forced out of the rollers. (The high pressure water gets past the o-rings and washes away the grease.)

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I would stick with your WD40 melk-man. My observations of the "no lube" chain maintenance technique indicates that the rollers tend to gall, get loose, then break off.

fleeting thought.. I'm not sure i could have brought myself to do it.

Brian...

Just in case you are not aware of the issue. Do not pressure wash your chain. If you have been doing that, it could be why the grease was forced out of the rollers. (The high pressure water gets past the o-rings and washes away the grease.)

i 2nd the no pressure washer zone for chains. If ya do, just have it fairly far away so it is not high pressure. Using wd40, i find mud/dirt comes for the most part with light water, then spray it down with wd40 and a wd40 soaked rag. Grab the chain and spin the wheel BY HAND and it will be pretty shiny in no time. (saw a photo of a guy that lost digits using the motor to spin the tire.. faackkk). The chain is VERY easy to clean this way.

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