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Thread: A word of Warning regarding Chains

  1. #11
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    Is China Inc. Counterfeiting 630 drive chains? Ship a million bucks of knockoff to hell with the danger?
    Is the chain you bought the bottom of the line offering? There's has always been a marked increase in service life with price in my experience.

    My friend who swears by his trusty scot oiler broke a chain and case last fall. Almost got killed.
    1983 GS 550 LD
    2009 BMW K1300s

  2. #12
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    Roller chain? Why on earth would you put a plain ole regular roller chain on? They don't last for crap even lubed.
    MrBill Been a GSR member on and off since April 2002
    1980 GS 750E Bought new in Feb of 1980
    2015 CAN AM RTS


    Stuff I've done to my bike 1100E front end with new Sonic springs, 1100E swing arm conversion with new Progressive shocks installed, 530 sprockets/chain conversion, new SS brake lines, new brake pads. New SS fasteners through out. Rebuilt carbs, new EBC clutch springs and horn installed. New paint. Motor runs strong.

  3. #13
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    Years ago 37 I was perusing my roommates Engineering Material text a resource for mech. Engineers.
    Among the vast and varied charts specs of real world off the shelf components was a section on roller chain.

    I looked up the power rating of standard 530 chain and was amazed that my bikes bhp was far in excess of what standard chain could adequately service.

    This 630 you bought is the lowest offering daido makes.
    1983 GS 550 LD
    2009 BMW K1300s

  4. #14
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    I had a master link fail on me once. That was the last time I used a master link chain.

    Quote Originally Posted by mrbill5491 View Post
    Roller chain? Why on earth would you put a plain ole regular roller chain on? They don't last for crap even lubed.
    And they are loud!! I made that mistake once, bought it because it was cheap. False economy since it lasted less than the rear tire did.
    Currently bikeless
    '81 GS 1100EX - "Peace, by superior fire power."
    '06 FZ1000 - "What we are dealing with here, is a COMPLETE lack of respect for the law."

    I ride, therefore I am.... constantly buying new tires.

    "Tell me what kind of an accident you are going to have, and I will tell you which helmet to wear." - Harry Hurt

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrbill5491 View Post
    Roller chain? Why on earth would you put a plain ole regular roller chain on? They don't last for crap even lubed.
    This right here. Roller chain is NOT appropriate for motorcycles in any way, shape, or form. It's an industrial product intended only for use in constantly lubricated low-speed applications.

    OP got very lucky that the aftermath wasn't worse.

    This pops up on ADVrider fairly often; someone thinks they've found a cheat code for saving money, and reasoning that if roller chain works on my bicycle, why not my motorcycle...? I don't need no fancy-schmancy o-rings... it never works out; even if the chain doesn't fail, it rarely lasts more than a few hundred miles.


    FWIW, the cheap Chinese o-ring chains and sprockets infesting fleaBay and scAmazon are also a very dangerous false economy. Over on the V-Strom and other forums, for example, there are reports of outright failures.


    Buy ONLY name brand o-ring or x-ring chains and sprockets manufactured in a first world country from trustworthy suppliers. For example, JT sprockets are made in Taiwan and are very high quality. Sunstar are also excellent and I think made in Japan. (However, JT and Sunstar branded chain isn't great.) Most of the best chains are made in Japan; I'm partial to EK, but there are several other good brands like DID, RK, and Regina.

    "House brand" chains from some retailers can be a mixed bag; proceed with extreme caution. Primary Drive chains and sprockets from Rocky Mountain ATV/MC are excellent quality and a screaming bargain for KLR owners, but the cheap stuff peddled at Cycle Gear under the Orbis name is mostly pretty bad.
    1983 GS850G, Cosmos Blue.
    2005 KLR685, Aztec Pink - Turd II.3, the ReReReTurdening
    2015 Yamaha FJ-09, Magma Red Power Corrupts...
    Eat more venison.

    Please provide details. The GSR Hive Mind is nearly omniscient, but not yet clairvoyant.

    Celeriter equita, converteque saepe.

  6. #16
    Gorminrider is offline Forum Sage Past Site Supporter
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    ^^ Gee, how did I ever go 10,000 miles on my yamaha 650 through USA and Canada with the plain ol Dido? Or the several Hondas, or my present bikes?

    Or your cam chain? Or the timing chains in 5 trillion vehicles?

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    Gorminrider is offline Forum Sage Past Site Supporter
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    When I look at my simple chain, I see wear as metal-on-metal with (copious) oil. When I see a rubber-sealed chain, I see wear as rubber-on-metal (ok,copious oil)...but which wears better?...IF as I suppose, the rubber wears faster, then so do large spaces in the chain....negating any advantage of "sealing" the rubber may have. A new rubber chain is also stiffer, heavier and robs hp.
    To me, they just look like a new way to sell silicone lubricants or ignore chain maintenance.

  8. #18
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    I have sealed 530 chains. They are heavier and more expensive, but the still require routine maintenance.

    '77 GS550B
    '78 GS550C

  9. #19
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    I'd like to find suppliers of chains and sprockets which offer quality items and who specialize in just sprockets and drive chains.I used-to deal more with Sprocket Specialist when they were located in Oroville,CA. back in the 90's and early 2000's but then they changed-hands a bit and are located in Utah.They offer many custom size aluminum rear sprockets and are good quality.I'm looking to get hooked-up with a supplier of different sprocket manufacturers of steel rear sprockets that come in different tooth offerings;it's difficult to do any better than OEM sprockets but if I want to change the ratio,I'm stuck looking around for a quality item.I like Sunstar,JT is ok but I prefer the steel Made in Japan(OEM quality)or other sprockets that use very hard steel and last the longest.There are many companies which offer aluminum sprockets which need to be replaced very often compared to steel:give me good quality steel rear and front sprockets as they last a very long time when maintained.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gorminrider View Post
    ^^ Gee, how did I ever go 10,000 miles on my yamaha 650 through USA and Canada with the plain ol Dido? Or the several Hondas, or my present bikes?

    Or your cam chain? Or the timing chains in 5 trillion vehicles?
    1) Low power, oversized chain, constant lubrication. Before o-ring chains arrived in the late '70s, motorcycles did indeed use roller chain. They used much beefier chain (my wife used to have a wee Honda 400 with a 530 chain) and you were supposed to slather it with gear oil or some other greasy unguent on a regular basis. Motorcyclists had perpetually oily hands and clothes... Some bikes had sealed or covered chains. And chains just didn't last that long. The 30,000 miles we can easily expect nowadays from a decent chain would have been regarded as pure science fiction back then.

    2) Timing chains run in oil and aren't exposed to rain and dirt. This is a proper use for a roller chain.


    If you want to use roller chain on your motorcycle, go right ahead. It's your machine.
    1983 GS850G, Cosmos Blue.
    2005 KLR685, Aztec Pink - Turd II.3, the ReReReTurdening
    2015 Yamaha FJ-09, Magma Red Power Corrupts...
    Eat more venison.

    Please provide details. The GSR Hive Mind is nearly omniscient, but not yet clairvoyant.

    Celeriter equita, converteque saepe.

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