1. The most important thing about buying a new bike is to make sure it fits. The only way you'll know if the bike is right for you is to size up the bike and make sure that the bike's geometry matches your body's geometry. Ask questions and do some research.
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2. If possible, try to find a shop that will let you demo the bike on real dirt. Five minutes in a parking lot won't cut it. You wouldn't buy a car without a real world test drive, and a bike should be no different.
3. Don't belive the hype. Just because your favorite rider or best friend rides a certain bike, that doesn't mean that's the best one for you. Have an open mind and be realistic about your needs and ability.
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Thread: Chain Issues?

  1. #1
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    New question here. Chain Issues?

    Hi, All. So I've really been enjoying getting out on the new bike for the last two weeks, but I'm running into a couple issues that I'm hoping someone can help me with.

    The first is when I go over logs/roots/etc. my chain will occasionally "jump" a bit. Yesterday, I had my chain come off three times in a 1-hour ride. It appeared to continue to happen even when I brought the front wheel up and when I kept pedaling.

    The second - possibly related - issue occurs occasionally when I'm pedaling hard: the chain appears to "skip" over a few links. The momentary loss of power is killing me on some of the hills.

    So, what I'm wondering is if maybe my chain is too long? Could it be something with my gears or maybe my derailleur? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!


    P.S. If it's any help, my bike is the Specialized Hardrock Sport Disc 29er


    *edited to add link*

  2. #2
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    First your fairly low end RD will not have the spring power to keep the chain on as well as higher end models...

    Second RD may need a tune up or you have bent the hanger during a crash or while transporting the bike.

  3. #3
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    If it turns out that it is an issue with the model of the derailleur itself and not something else, is there another rear derailleur that would be recommended as a good value that won't jump around on me?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clorox View Post
    If it turns out that it is an issue with the model of the derailleur itself and not something else, is there another rear derailleur that would be recommended as a good value that won't jump around on me?
    I prefer Shimano anything SLX and up would be fine.

  5. #5
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    Agree with Jeff but there are a couple things you can do:

    1) use big gears as opposed to small ones, for example if you find yourself in the small chain ring up front, and one of the middle cogs in back, go to middle ring in front, and a larger cog in back. Same gear ratio, but higher tension. This is also better for another reason: I always felt that the little chainring was the flexiest gear on the bike because of the leverage it puts on the drive train, so you want to force yourself to use higher gears add you improve - I habitually shift to the bigger chain rings whenever possible and stay out of the granny gear until it gets really steep.

    2) to see if the chain is too long, shift to big in front and big in back. It should just barely work, with the rear derailluer cage at about a 45 degree angle, and when pedaling, it will feel like its 'dragging' on something, mostly because of the high angle the rear derailleur cage needs to be at and the tension thru the rear d. You don't want to ride like this, you're just testing here. If the rear d cage is at a lower angle this is a sign the chain is too long. Also if you go to little cog and granny on front, the rear d should pull back the cage very far but still keep tension on the chain. If the rear d cage is at the stop (where the cage would rest if there was no chain), then the chain is probably a link too long.
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  6. #6
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    I'm guessing the real issue is probably related to ddprocter's first point: using the small chainring. To be honest, you can do all you want but as long as you have multiple front gears you will occasionally have the chain bounce off. Drastic measures like getting a chainguide might be able to be taken, but in reality there isn't much you can improve assuming everything is set up properly. Just try to be in the middle chainring and when your chain starts slapping around, remember to take it easy on that first pedal stroke in case something moved.
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