Chain Adjustment - Loose then Tight - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 05:04 PM Thread Starter
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Chain Adjustment - Loose then Tight

When I rode down from NY to NC, I had to adjust my chain after I arrived, heard some chain slap on the last little stretch down. All checked out. Then, I rode very spirited for about 100 miles a week later and heard some chain slap towards the end of the ride. Figured it makes sense, heat of summer plus 120 on the highway might do that. Re-adjusted, all checked out.

Recently, I've been riding two-up with my lady a lot and once rather spiritedly. Today, after say 100 miles with her on back, I heard again some chain slap and sure enough the chain had some serious free play when I checked at gas station. Am I missing something here? Old chain time to replace?

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post #2 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
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Not sure why I chose that title, better title would be "chain slackens quickly"

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post #3 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 05:14 PM
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How many miles on the chain? It almost sounds like your rear wheel not staying in place after you torque it down.

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post #4 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 05:22 PM
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Are you doing your chain slack setting with a clean and warm chain?
If not, you setting can be way off base, depending on how grunged up your chain is, and if you are using a super viscous chain lube such as PJ1 Blue.

Are you doing repeated spin checks when you check your chain slack?
If not, you could be doing a chain slack setting when the slack run is in a tight zone due to the combination of front sprocket/chain/rear sprocket inaccuracies and chain tight spots.

If you are doing your setting with a clean, lubed and warm chain, then I would be looking for inadequate axle bolt tightness, possibly as aggravated by improperly setting the adjuster screws.
After proper chain slack has been established, and the axle nut correctly tightened, the Drive Side Adjuster screw should be checked and made sure it is still lightly loaded in a "pull" mode. The Brake Disc Side Adjuster screw should be reverse loaded and put in a lightly loaded "push" mode.
The idea behind the "push" and "pull" modes is to serve to counter the natural tendency of the rear wheel to get cocked in the swing arm from chain pull when there is not adequate axial clamping force from the rear axle.

Suggested is 35 mm slack and no less, warm chain, clean chain, verified by wheel spin tests.

Ultimately, you should not be experiencing what you are observing.

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post #5 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 05:55 PM
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mcromo44, what is the ideal way to lubricate a chain? i just aim for the rollers and the o rings. i only blast the side plates after i de-lubed the chain so they have some sort of protective coating. I have a brand new chain that i did some off roading with, and it got covered in dust. I have to use degreaser on it and I'm just concerned that I will be removing the factory packed grease. My last chain only lasted me about 14k miles. 14k to me sounds fine considering the abuse it takes. I douse the chain every time the pins dont have a film of lube on them, or roughly every 100 miles. I usually only spray pointing from the back of the rear sprocket. Am I doing anything wrong?

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post #6 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 06:29 PM Thread Starter
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@marylandmike likely original with 15k on the bike. Sprocket teeth are okay and chain has room left for adjustment still. Chain is pretty grungy so maybe safe to assume time for a new one


@mcromo44 Ah, perhaps that's it - I haven't adjusted on a warm chain, would this be the culprit? Regarding the push/pull, that's interesting and makes sense. I think the manual said to tighten clockwise loosely so I had been doing that for both. To confirm, "pull" = counterclockwise and "push" = clockwise, correct?




Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
Are you doing your chain slack setting with a clean and warm chain?
If not, you setting can be way off base, depending on how grunged up your chain is, and if you are using a super viscous chain lube such as PJ1 Blue.

Are you doing repeated spin checks when you check your chain slack?
If not, you could be doing a chain slack setting when the slack run is in a tight zone due to the combination of front sprocket/chain/rear sprocket inaccuracies and chain tight spots.

If you are doing your setting with a clean, lubed and warm chain, then I would be looking for inadequate axle bolt tightness, possibly as aggravated by improperly setting the adjuster screws.
After proper chain slack has been established, and the axle nut correctly tightened, the Drive Side Adjuster screw should be checked and made sure it is still lightly loaded in a "pull" mode. The Brake Disc Side Adjuster screw should be reverse loaded and put in a lightly loaded "push" mode.
The idea behind the "push" and "pull" modes is to serve to counter the natural tendency of the rear wheel to get cocked in the swing arm from chain pull when there is not adequate axial clamping force from the rear axle.

Suggested is 35 mm slack and no less, warm chain, clean chain, verified by wheel spin tests.

Ultimately, you should not be experiencing what you are observing.

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post #7 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 06:35 PM
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Knicholas. I had a similar issue. Hard ride would loosen recently adjusted chain.
Mcromo44's tip about tightening adjuster nuts to opposite lock fixed my problem. I think my axle nut torque is on the low side. Maybe because I get grease everywhere and probably don't get it all off when I tighten. I think I tend to tighten on the low side anyway. I read about over tightening is hard on bearings etc. Anyway I've not had a single loosened chain since setting the nuts that way.

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post #8 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 07:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knicholas View Post


@mcromo44 Ah, perhaps that's it - I haven't adjusted on a warm chain, would this be the culprit? Regarding the push/pull, that's interesting and makes sense. I think the manual said to tighten clockwise loosely so I had been doing that for both. To confirm, "pull" = counterclockwise and "push" = clockwise, correct?
Cold checking and/or cold setting could easily explain it all.

Yes, "pull" is by counterclockwise and "push" is by counterclockwise turning of the adjuster screw.
Just light loading though!
Enough to nicely seat it on the load face and keep it from vibrating loose.

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post #9 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 07:34 PM
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I guess I learned something new. Never knew about making the adjustment with a warm chain. IDK how much of a difference it makes. I'm probably making it worse by leaning towards loose because a tight chain would have a lot more heat.

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post #10 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 07:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Islandboy View Post
I think my axle nut torque is on the low side. Maybe because I get grease everywhere and probably don't get it all off when I tighten. I think I tend to tighten on the low side anyway. I read about over tightening is hard on bearings etc. Anyway I've not had a single loosened chain since setting the nuts that way.

The factory value is for dry threads, dry nut and dry washer.
You are wise to back off on the torque if threads have anything lube like on any or all of the aforementioned.

Dry torqued, the factory value should be OK.
No way are the inner races ever going to get crushed by that value.
Keep in mind that if the Outer Race registers in the hubs are correct, the bearings will not be excessively preload by the axle clamping through the inner stack.
(I figure the cumulative tolerance is such that the bearings can see some non problematic light preload at most.)
The inner stack is reliant upon the inner races of the wheel bearings.
The outer races should not be involved, and if they are, something is wrong with the register into which they fit.
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post #11 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 07:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlJay View Post
I guess I learned something new. Never knew about making the adjustment with a warm chain. IDK how much of a difference it makes. I'm probably making it worse by leaning towards loose because a tight chain would have a lot more heat.
Always set the slack on the looser side of spec.
Not loosest, but looser.
A good rule is set no tighter than 50 % through the allowable range.
For example, if the recommended range is 30 - 40 mm of slack, use 35 or higher.

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post #12 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 10:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
Always set the slack on the looser side of spec.
Not loosest, but looser.
A good rule is set no tighter than 50 % through the allowable range.
For example, if the recommended range is 30 - 40 mm of slack, use 35 or higher.
Ok, but what about the warm vs cold... I've always done it cold. I clean, lube, adjust the chain. But never just after a ride.

I guess I could measure before and after a ride.

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post #13 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 10:08 PM Thread Starter
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Wonderful, thank you for the tips!

Tomorrow I'll put her up on the phobstand, get my chain a little warmed up letting wheel spin in first, and then adjust while warm (engine off of course) using the reverse adjuster screw tightening approach.

Cheers!

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post #14 of 50 Old 08-10-2017, 11:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlJay View Post
Ok, but what about the warm vs cold... I've always done it cold. I clean, lube, adjust the chain. But never just after a ride.

I guess I could measure before and after a ride.
One can adjust cold, but to then not check when warm is bad practice as it's the warm slack that matters.
Also, a warm chain is easier to clean, especially if gunked up with a super high cold viscosity lube like a PJ1 Blue.

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post #15 of 50 Old 08-11-2017, 06:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
One can adjust cold, but to then not check when warm is bad practice as it's the warm slack that matters.
Also, a warm chain is easier to clean, especially if gunked up with a super high cold viscosity lube like a PJ1 Blue.
I don't know how much difference it makes, but I know on solid cams they have hot and cold specs. If the chain slack mattered, the mfg should have said which one to do or how to do both.

Not arguing the fact that they are different or that the warm is the one that matters, but that Honda should have pointed this out in their manual. They're known for not assuming thing in manual, and this is the 1st I've heard of it.

TBH, I don't know how much difference it makes, I've let mine go a bit too long and found it to be quite a bit out of spec and I wouldn't have noticed without checking... Since then, I check every lube

It's just odd that Honda doesn't say if the specs are hot or cold, yet all valve adjustment that I've seen have both hot and cold specs.

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post #16 of 50 Old 08-11-2017, 08:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlJay View Post
I don't know how much difference it makes, but I know on solid cams they have hot and cold specs. If the chain slack mattered, the mfg should have said which one to do or how to do both.

Not arguing the fact that they are different or that the warm is the one that matters, but that Honda should have pointed this out in their manual. They're known for not assuming thing in manual, and this is the 1st I've heard of it.

TBH, I don't know how much difference it makes, I've let mine go a bit too long and found it to be quite a bit out of spec and I wouldn't have noticed without checking... Since then, I check every lube

It's just odd that Honda doesn't say if the specs are hot or cold, yet all valve adjustment that I've seen have both hot and cold specs.
Manuals don't have the tricks of the trade, be they general or model specific.
Nor the associated explanations.

Manuals don't always show the best method.
Example, Honda says remove rear wheel to change the rear shock.
It's not necessary, and takes more time thus wasting it.

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post #17 of 50 Old 08-11-2017, 08:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post

Dry torqued, the factory value should be OK.
No way are the inner races ever going to get crushed by that value.
Keep in mind that if the Outer Race registers in the hubs are correct, the bearings will not be excessively preload by the axle clamping through the inner stack.
(I figure the cumulative tolerance is such that the bearings can see some non problematic light preload at most.)
The inner stack is reliant upon the inner races of the wheel bearings.
The outer races should not be involved, and if they are, something is wrong with the register into which they fit.
Thanks for confirming my thinking on this topic.

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post #18 of 50 Old 08-11-2017, 09:05 PM
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This thread has great info in it. Thanks guys. I'm going to utilize the push/pull method from now on. I really need to get a stand.


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post #19 of 50 Old 08-11-2017, 09:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheScientist View Post
This thread has great info in it. Thanks guys. I'm going to utilize the push/pull method from now on. I really need to get a stand.


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I got the steel one from Harbor Freight with a 20% discount coupon and it ended up around $25~$35 or so and I've been using it for a while now, works great.

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post #20 of 50 Old 08-11-2017, 10:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KarlJay View Post
I got the steel one from Harbor Freight with a 20% discount coupon and it ended up around $25~$35 or so and I've been using it for a while now, works great.


Nice I'll check it out


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post #21 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 05:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
mcromo44, what is the ideal way to lubricate a chain? i just aim for the rollers and the o rings. i only blast the side plates after i de-lubed the chain so they have some sort of protective coating. I have a brand new chain that i did some off roading with, and it got covered in dust. I have to use degreaser on it and I'm just concerned that I will be removing the factory packed grease. My last chain only lasted me about 14k miles. 14k to me sounds fine considering the abuse it takes. I douse the chain every time the pins dont have a film of lube on them, or roughly every 100 miles. I usually only spray pointing from the back of the rear sprocket. Am I doing anything wrong?
That is an excellent question, but I don’t think a simple answer will serve all well, due to the two inherent camps of “Lean Stand Only” and “Centre or Race Stand”.
In addition, when it comes to questioning about lubing the chain, asking about cleaning really should be in the same breath.
(I’m deliberately not raising what lube is best, which is a debate in the same league as what engine oil is best.)
Short story, if one can’t get the rear wheel off the ground so it can be spun, then proper cleaning and lubing is a right royal pain in the backside. (As will be chain slack checking/setting/confirming.)
OK, enough of lead-in.
My recently revised practice for Major Post Cleaning Major Relubing is:
-chain warmed from a short ride.
-bike on (centre or) race stand.
-remove hugger.(combination chain guard and tire hugger)
-a 10 inch long or so piece of cardboard with two folds, such that the chain runs on the middle section, and the front and back flaps both tall enough to contain chain lube overspray.
-spin the wheel and make sure it is stays spinning when spraying.
-spray such that lube is directed down to get it between the inner and outer plates and between the plates and rollers. (this means a spray for “inboard”, and another for “outboard”)
-then a spray along the middle of the rollers.
-the holy grail of chain lubing is to do it on the inside of the run, so to satisfy that, after the above sprays, I do one along the middle of the rollers on the inside of the slack run.
-let it set up, the spray lube that is.
-wipe down the side plates of the wide links as best as you can to minimize dirt collecting there.(denim for old jeans is great for this)

I do my subsequent lube touch ups on the stand, and do a spray along the middle of the rollers on the inside of the slack run, then another one on the outside of the run on the rear sprocket.
Warm chain of course.

14,000 miles doesn’t sound very good for chain life.
Especially when one considers that most people change chains when they are well beyond a decent wear limit.
Mine has about 10 on it, has something like 2000 miles of track days on it, and while it’s worn some, it still have lots of life left.
For road riding, I’d be choked if I didn’t get 20 -25,000 miles out of a good chain that was well cared for.

Good chain lube should last longer than 100 miles, especially on dry pavement.

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post #22 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 05:53 PM
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I had basically no wear on the sprockets, but the chain wasn't looking too good according to the pull test. It could have gone longer but I ran out of adjustment. I ride year round and long Island salts the roads to the point where you look out the window thinking it snowed but it's actually just salt. I do essentially the same thing you do to lube, maybe it's just the different conditions. That, that there are times where I do long rides 500+ miles without lubing midway. Could be that too......

Oh well. It's a replaceable item. At the rate I chew through tires and brake pads, it's really not that big of a deal to me.

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post #23 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 05:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
I have a brand new chain that i did some off roading with, and it got covered in dust. I have to use degreaser on it and I'm just concerned that I will be removing the factory packed grease.
I got a real wake up on this recently.
To cut a long story short, I’ll say this.
I was using PJ1 Blue, which is a super viscous lube that I now feel is lacking in E P and wear resistant properties.
Once that stuff is dirty and is built up some, I think it starts wreaking havoc on X rings.
So if you clean with kerosene as I was doing, some gets to the pin/roller grease and degrades it.
Thus explaining 3 tight spots I had.
I picked LDH’s brains some on the matter, but couldn’t find Repsol here in town.
So I got some Motul chain cleaner and Bel-Ray Super Clean (NOT the super tac stuff!!!)
I was amazed at how well, and how easily, the chain cleaned up.
And with the Bel-Ray lube on and allowed to creep in, the wheel spun like it had a brand new X ring chain on it.
(The Bel-Ray is an oil spray with “hot” very low viscosity carriers for maximum creep, with some other stuff that sets up a “grease” to hold the oil after the carriers have flashed off. Yes, a “grease” and not a “wax”.)
I did a couple of relubes hoping for more creep into the tight spots.
Two of the tight spots are gone, and the one that’s left is not a bad one, so I’m keeping an eye on it.
My sense of things at present is that with a good chain lube and an O ring chain, kerosene would be OK, but I’m not going back to it.
Last point, when you say degreasers, what kind? Paint thinner is bad news, as it has some “hot” fractions in it that are bad for X and O ring elastomers.

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post #24 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 06:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
I got a real wake up on this recently.
To cut a long story short, I’ll say this.
I was using PJ1 Blue, which is a super viscous lube that I now feel is lacking in E P and wear resistant properties.
Once that stuff is dirty and is built up some, I think it starts wreaking havoc on X rings.
So if you clean with kerosene as I was doing, some gets to the pin/roller grease and degrades it.
Thus explaining 3 tight spots I had.
I picked LDH’s brains some on the matter, but couldn’t find Repsol here in town.
So I got some Motul chain cleaner and Bel-Ray Super Clean (NOT the super tac stuff!!!)
I was amazed at how well, and how easily, the chain cleaned up.
And with the Bel-Ray lube on and allowed to creep in, the wheel spun like it had a brand new X ring chain on it.
(The Bel-Ray is an oil spray with “hot” very low viscosity carriers for maximum creep, with some other stuff that sets up a “grease” to hold the oil after the carriers have flashed off. Yes, a “grease” and not a “wax”.)
I did a couple of relubes hoping for more creep into the tight spots.
Two of the tight spots are gone, and the one that’s left is not a bad one, so I’m keeping an eye on it.
My sense of things at present is that with a good chain lube and an O ring chain, kerosene would be OK, but I’m not going back to it.
Last point, when you say degreasers, what kind? Paint thinner is bad news, as it has some “hot” fractions in it that are bad for X and O ring elastomers.
I use the "chain wax" and their chain degreaser. It's a great degreaser but it leaves behind like a film of a light lubricant and doesn't dry the rubber out. Also use their brush. Cleans up the chain real nice. Never had any tight spots.

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post #25 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 06:04 PM
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Originally Posted by nathanktm View Post
I had basically no wear on the sprockets, but the chain wasn't looking too good according to the pull test. It could have gone longer but I ran out of adjustment. I ride year round and long Island salts the roads to the point where you look out the window thinking it snowed but it's actually just salt. I do essentially the same thing you do to lube, maybe it's just the different conditions. That, that there are times where I do long rides 500+ miles without lubing midway. Could be that too......

Oh well. It's a replaceable item. At the rate I chew through tires and brake pads, it's really not that big of a deal to me.
For a chain to be trashed and the sprockets not only still OK but with little to no wear, is highly suggestive of a chain problem, be it cheap chain and/or some element that wreaks havoc with the pin OD /roller ID surfaces.

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post #26 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 07:02 PM
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Got 35k miles or something like that using kero baths every 5k miles or so and lube/wipe downs in between.

The issue isn't that kero gets in there, its that the dirt and grime doesn't get cleaned out. A wax based chain lube works great! I switched to mutol because the wax lube I used wasn't holding up to the heat well here.

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post #27 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 07:32 PM
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Got 35k miles or something like that using kero baths every 5k miles or so and lube/wipe downs in between.

The issue isn't that kero gets in there, its that the dirt and grime doesn't get cleaned out. A wax based chain lube works great! I switched to mutol because the wax lube I used wasn't holding up to the heat well here.
IF an O or X ring is at all damaged, kero or any kind of liquid thinner will get in.

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post #28 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 10:01 PM
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IF an O or X ring is at all damaged, kero or any kind of liquid thinner will get in.
exactly. That's what I was saying about the dirt and grime which damages the rings.

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post #29 of 50 Old 08-12-2017, 11:23 PM
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exactly. That's what I was saying about the dirt and grime which damages the rings.
Yes, but I think the potential for the dirt and grime to cause the damage is related to certain lube characteristics.
I'm rather choked at myself for letting the chain get as gummed up as it did.
It didn't look bad, but cold spin checks told a certain story.
Between getting the chain squeaky clean and using a different lube, the cold spin test is worlds apart.
The wheel goes way faster from one shot of the hand, and spins longer.
That tells me something.

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post #30 of 50 Old 08-20-2017, 02:23 PM Thread Starter
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@mcromo44 new question for ya! took a nice 380 mile ride yesterday, the chain noise came back. Troubleshooting today, realized the noise goes away instantly once the chain is lubed. Probably some loose and/or tight spots in the chain? Time for a new set of chain/sprockets? Only has 15k on the odo, but PO didn't take such good care of the chain from the looks of it.

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post #31 of 50 Old 08-20-2017, 10:25 PM
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I had similar issue.. 14k on the odo, PO neglected, some wa-wa noise I could not really identify. New chain, sprocketes, and rear wheel bearings for good measure. Noise gone, rides like new. Upon inspection old chain had lock installed too tight, links left and right of 'lock' (is that what you call it?) were tight due to pins installed too tight.
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post #32 of 50 Old 08-21-2017, 05:13 AM
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53K miles and counting...DID X Ring 530, 17/44 steel sprockets...chain oiler and a wipe down when ever it accumulates some dirt. Thorough cleaning with kerosene at every tire change. The chain has a couple of tight links, but no noise and passes the pull test easily and nowhere near the red on the swing arm indicator. Checked the elongation at 50K and it was well within spec. New chain and sprockets are on the way.
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post #33 of 50 Old 08-21-2017, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
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thanks for the insights. looks like new chain and sprockets are in order. debating whether to go 520 or 530 now. i ride in all types of weather and don't want to have to be meticulous about chain maintenance - my niner isn't a show pony by any stretch

2002 Honda 919
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post #34 of 50 Old 08-22-2017, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knicholas View Post
@mcromo44 new question for ya! took a nice 380 mile ride yesterday, the chain noise came back. Troubleshooting today, realized the noise goes away instantly once the chain is lubed. Probably some loose and/or tight spots in the chain? Time for a new set of chain/sprockets? Only has 15k on the odo, but PO didn't take such good care of the chain from the looks of it.
1
Maybe the lube you use is not capable of adequately remaining after some distance.
If you grab a chain link (when still warm after riding!) at the 3 o'clock position on the sprocket and pull to the right, how much does the chain lift away from the sprocket at that point?
That's the best way to gauge the wear.

2
Perhaps the O rings are shot, and the chain pin OD /roller ID grease is degraded and/or gone, and the chain is now reliant on your applications of chain lube to creep in for adequate lube.
If so, more frequent lubing is required.

3
Can you get a helper to pull the bike over on the lean stand so the bike is two point resting on the front wheel and lean stand and the rear wheel is off the ground, so you can get down, spin the rear wheel and look for tight spots as another indicator of chain condition.
(pull on handlebars with wheel at right hand lock to pull the bike over on to side stand and lever up the rear wheel)
All this on warm chain.

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post #35 of 50 Old 08-22-2017, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
1
Maybe the lube you use is not capable of adequately remaining after some distance.
If you grab a chain link (when still warm after riding!) at the 3 o'clock position on the sprocket and pull to the right, how much does the chain lift away from the sprocket at that point?
That's the best way to gauge the wear.

2
Perhaps the O rings are shot, and the chain pin OD /roller ID grease is degraded and/or gone, and the chain is now reliant on your applications of chain lube to creep in for adequate lube.
If so, more frequent lubing is required.

3
Can you get a helper to pull the bike over on the lean stand so the bike is two point resting on the front wheel and lean stand and the rear wheel is off the ground, so you can get down, spin the rear wheel and look for tight spots as another indicator of chain condition.
(pull on handlebars with wheel at right hand lock to pull the bike over on to side stand and lever up the rear wheel)
All this on warm chain.
1) very little movement at 3 o clock, i did 380 miles this weekend and checked (so chain was definitely warm) and it was probably 2mm, 3mm tops. What's considered "a lot"?

2) This is what I'm most leaning towards. Again, PO let her sit outside for a time, chain has a bit of rust so I thought it was O ring issues. Would more frequent lubing solve this? Or what if I use a more viscous lube like a wax - would that help?

3. I had the bike up on my phobman stand checking for tight spots and there do seem to be a few but the difference between tight and not tight is pretty slim. Only a few mm difference. Though I expect this is enough to cause the noise. It's just strange to me that once freshly lubed, she makes absolutely no noise whatsoever (enter @marylandmike TWSS haha).
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2002 Honda 919
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post #36 of 50 Old 08-23-2017, 06:08 PM
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Quote:
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1) very little movement at 3 o clock,
it was probably 2mm, 3mm tops.
What's considered "a lot"?
2- 3 mm of such movement indicates major wear.
Do it again, and this time make a point of watching the rest of the chain where it makes contact with the rear sprocket, sort of a 11:30 to 6:30 sweep of chain.
If you are getting 2-3 @ 3 o'clock, there is no way the total chain wrap will not move.
You will see the chain moving in relation to the sprocket.
This is absolute evidence of worn chain pitch not matching sprocket pitch, and the chain having to ride up on the teeth a bit to find a pitch match location.

I just found the following on the Renthal site.
To measure how much a chain has stretched, put the motorcycle in gear and rotate the rear wheel to tension the top strand of the chain. Measure accurately (ideally with a vernier) 16 links, counting both roller and pin links. If the length of the measured 16 links is greater than the maximum acceptable length given in the table below then the chain should no longer be used. These figures assume a 2% maximum allowable extension for non 'O'-ring chain and a 1% maximum extension for 'O'-ring chain.

Maximum Acceptable Lengths - 520 chains

Original Chain Pitch - 5/8" / 15.875mm

Non 'O'-ring chain - 10.2" / 259.0mm

'O'-ring chain - 10.1" / 256.5mm


1% chain wear is said to be the limit for sealed chains.
I don't understand why 2% is OK for non sealed, that's double of what they say for sealed chains.
Yikes, I sure wouldn't want to do track days with a 2% chain of any kind!
I like the vernier method they describe.
I'd try to use the bottom run to check it, better access.
Need a helper.
Put bike in gear, have helper rotate wheel backwards and force it as much as possible to take out the clearance and get rid of the chain droop.
Chain needs to be warm.
1% does no sound like much, but it's more than one might think.
Higher end road bicycles call out a nominal 1/2 a % as a limit for chain wear.

I'd like to see LDH in particular, chime in on your question 1)

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post #37 of 50 Old 08-23-2017, 07:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post

Put bike in gear, have helper rotate wheel backwards and force it as much as possible to take out the clearance and get rid of the chain droop.
You can also put a rag or something between the lower run of chain and rear sprocket and push the bike forward. That will put tension on the lower run of chain while you measure it.

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post #38 of 50 Old 08-24-2017, 07:08 AM Thread Starter
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Wonderful, I'll re-measure this weekend. I have a lot of "green" left on chain adjustment indicator and have a feeling my eyeballing of 2-3mm is going to be a vast overestimation. Will circle back here then - thanks again!

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post #39 of 50 Old 08-24-2017, 07:28 PM
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Wonderful, I'll re-measure this weekend. I have a lot of "green" left on chain adjustment indicator and have a feeling my eyeballing of 2-3mm is going to be a vast overestimation. Will circle back here then - thanks again!
1
Keep in mind that the "Green" zone is based on stock gearing and chain length, which dictates where the rear axle centreline is going to be.
Add front and/or rear teeth for any given chain length will corrupt the relationship and put it in the "very misleading" zone.
Same problem re changing chain length.

2
An interesting exercise would be to figure out what the width of the green band translates to in terms of % elongation vs. new.
Some fairly basic math would suffice.

3
If when you pull a warm chain radially out at the 3 o'clock position, and can see across the bottom of the sprocket's tooth root (where the "caliper diameter" is measured at, as compared to where the "bottom diameter" is measured at), then you know you have a problem.

Don't be like the Harley guy I saw on the sand at Sauble Beach about 45 years ago.
His rear wheel had sunk in a bit, just enough that his totally shagged chain and sprockets couldn't cope with the added force needed to get the bike up and out of the sand and moving forward again.
We literally stood with jaws agape as we realized his chain was running over his rear sprocket and not even grabbing the teeth enough to get any power transmission!
How the chain continued to track the sprocket and not fling off, I do not know.

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post #40 of 50 Old 08-25-2017, 07:13 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcromo44 View Post
1

3
If when you pull a warm chain radially out at the 3 o'clock position, and can see across the bottom of the sprocket's tooth root (where the "caliper diameter" is measured at, as compared to where the "bottom diameter" is measured at), then you know you have a problem.
Still stock gearing so no problem there. Regarding bottom vs. caliper diameter: to confirm my understanding, in the photo attached, caliper diameter is measured at the deepest part of the well (the trough if you will). So if I can see any bit of the trough/well when pulled back, then chain is shot?

And in these cases, why wouldn't tightening the chain rectify this (provided adjustment room is left)?
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2002 Honda 919
1999 DR650
1998 GS500 - sold
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