FAQ: How To Identify Bicycle Chain?

What size chain is on a bicycle?

Chains come in 3⁄32 in (2.4 mm), 1⁄8 in (3.2 mm), 5⁄32 in (4.0 mm), or 3⁄16 in (4.8 mm) roller widths, the internal width between the inner plates. 1⁄8 in (3.2 mm) chains are typically used on bikes with a single rear sprocket: those with coaster brakes, hub gears, fixed gears such as track bicycles, or BMX bikes.

How do I identify a chain link?

To find the master link on your chain, mount your bike in a bike work stand. If you don’t have a work stand, flip the bike over so it rests on its handlebars and saddle. Stand on the drivetrain side of your bike so you’re able to look straight down on the chain.

What do the numbers on a bike chain mean?

Bicycle Chains are generally categorized into two types: 1/2 × 1/8 and 1/2 × 3/32. The first number (1/2) is the chain pitch; the latter numbers (1/8 and 3/32, respectively) indicate the inner width in inches. Number 1/2 × 3/32 chain is used with a derailleur.

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Do all bike chains have a master link?

Do all bike chains have a master link? Nope, not all chains have master links. If your bicycle has derailleurs, it means it’s unlikely that your bike’s chain will have a master link.

How do I know my chain size?

To measure the chain size, if you have just the sprocket, use calipers to measure between the teeth. Measure from center to center of where the chain roller would set between the teeth that will give you the pitch. Once you know the pitch you can determine what chain size you would need.

What is the difference between bicycle chains?

Chains can vary in side plate shape, sizing, and height. Differences can cause variations in shifting performance between brands and models. Additionally, chains will vary in the quality of steel used. Better chains that are more durable and longer lasting tend to have harder rivets.

How do I set the size of a chain link?

Chain Link Sizes: How to Measure Chain Link Sizes

  1. Pitch is measured by finding the distance from the center of one pin to the center of the next pin in line.
  2. Determine your side plate height and thickness by measuring both inside and outside the roller chain to ensure that you’re seeing a good average size.

How do I know my roller chain size?

Roller Chain Identification Most roller chain has the size stamped right into the side plates. You may see something like “40”, “C2080H” or “10B” stamped in, which the industry number that represents the chain size. Old chains will most likely need to be cleaned in order to see the size.

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How do I know what speed my bike is?

Multiply the front gear number by the rear gear number to get the number of speeds. For example, if you have two front gears and five back gears, you have a 10-speed bike. If you have one front gear and three back gears, you have a 3-speed bike.

How often should I change my bike chain?

The 2,000-Mile Rule. To avoid this accelerated wear of your cassette and chainrings, a general rule of thumb is to replace your bike’s chain every 2,000 miles. Mind you, this is just a starting point. No two chains will wear at exactly the same rate because no two riders treat their chains the same. 4

What is chain number?

Chain types are identified by number; ie. a number 40 chain. The digits to the left indicate the pitch of the chain in eighths of an inch. For example, a number 40 chain would have a pitch of four-eighths of an inch, or 1/2″, and would be of the standard dimensions in width, roller diameter, etc.

How do you break a chain link without a tool?

In order to shorten the link without a chain tool, you need an alternative tool like a hammer, pliers or thin nail. They will assist you in pushing the pin easily. You can position the chain over a socket, and hit it with a hammer. Then, you can now pass the bolt all throughout the open holes.

Do bike chains have a direction?

Chain Routing Some chains are directional and any logos or printed letters should face out towards the mechanic on the drive side. The process for routing the chain is the same for either master link or connecting rivet chains, just make sure to lead with outer plates if using a connecting rivet chain.

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