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  1. #1
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    Cainsuck on Trek, Fisher and Klein full-susp

    Did anyone ever come up with an explanation for why these rigs were so suceptable to chainsuck? There were alot of "guesses" but, I never actually heard what the definate cause was.

  2. #2
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    All offerings from these brands have a problem with chainsuck? Where'd you get that?
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  3. #3
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    The fuel, sugar and couple others are well noted for it! Just check the reviews.

  4. #4
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    My first reaction is why don't you come up with some details rather than the broad generalization, but thought heck, I'll check. Not the biggest fan of the Trek products myself. Not one comment (in "weaknesses", assume that's where such a horrible problem would be) for the first four models I looked at. On the last one (the fifth model; all chosen at random) I did see two chainsuck comments but really it sounded like inexperience on the part of the riders. Similarly, I saw reviews complaining about the tires, or how wide the bars were, or how comfortable the seat was (get a life people). I know a couple folk who ride such bikes regularly; haven't heard chainsuck a particular complaint.
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fisty
    The fuel, sugar and couple others are well noted for it! Just check the reviews.
    I know several people with the bikes in question. They have no more or less chainsuck than any other bike.

    Chainsuck is caused by a worn, dirty and/or improperly adjusted drivetrain. Frame design is not a cause factor. I had an elevated chainstay (rigid) bike. When the chain was muddy and the rings worn I would get chainsuck. The chain would stay wrapped on the ring until the bottom run jammed under the top run. The frame did not come into play at all.

    The chain jamming between the swing arm/chainstay and rings is what happens after the chain sucks. Frame design and setup does affect how badly it can jam. An experienced rider can feel when the "suck" is happening and stop or back pedal to release the chain before it is a huge problem. If you just blindly keep stomping on the pedals it will jam hard and tight. Knowing when to and not to shift can reduce chainsuck, too.
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  6. #6
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    Well it has been a few years since it was a hot topic so maybe it is resolved. I have a two 02 Sugar 1s that I have dealt with for some time. I pretty much have them suck free at this point but, still the occasional problem. I probably should have stated that in my post rather than being so general. I have redone both of the driveside chainstays for better clearance when the do suck. As far as feeling the presuck in the drive, that is a given. They just are very quirky and quick to suck on shifts and also with less than full power on the pedals.
    Last edited by Fisty; 12-27-2005 at 04:27 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fisty
    Well it has been a few years since it was a hot topic so maybe it is resolved. I have a two 02 Sugar 1s that I have dealt with for some time. I pretty much have them suck free at this point but, still the occasional problem. I probably should have stated that in my post rather than being so general. I have redone both of the driveside chainstays for better clearance when the do suck. As far as feeling the presuck in the drive, that is a given. They just are very quirky and quick to suck on shifts and also with less than full power on the pedals.
    IIRC part of the problem on the earlier Sugars et al was the Bontrager chainrings. Shimano rings worked better as do the newer Bonty rings.

    Feeling the "presuck" is not a given with way too many riders, hence the reviews. Hard to make a drivetrain idiot-proof, though Shimano keeps trying.
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  8. #8
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    The 02" Sugar 1 came stock with xtr cranks though Shig and, we all had problems too.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    IIRC part of the problem on the earlier Sugars et al was the Bontrager chainrings. Shimano rings worked better as do the newer Bonty rings.
    Ding. Ding. Ding. We have a winner. A year or two ago Trek issued a warrantee or recall replacement of the Bontrager (Truvative) middle ring, the notice was posted on their website.

    The "V3" version of the middle ring, is the cause, they replace with a "V5" version.

    Worked for me when I had my Fuel.

    See here:
    http://www2.trekbikes.com/us/en/Insi...hould_I_do.php

    Mr. P

  10. #10
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    Unequal wear, if the rings are wearing faster than the chain, or the chain is wearing faster than the rings, will cause chainsuck, because the distance between the teeth and distance between the pins no longer matches up. This is a big source of chainsuck.
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  11. #11
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    Trek told me that due to the short chainstays (Genesis geometry) there is less clearance than normal on the Cakes between the chainrings and the chainstay and that is a BIG part of the chainsuck problem. Also once the frame gets marred from one bad suckage ( ) it will be more likely to happen again and again. We've had a few Cakes with perpetual suckage and we've tried EVERYTHING to no avail. I used to believe chainsuck was striclty limited to a bad setup or poor maintenance but now I realise there are other issues too such as bad frame design. Sticky crappy grade aluminum chainrings don't help but are not the real culprit ultimately.

  12. #12
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    Frames that suck have chain suck

    I had a GF Sugar 3+ witch chain sucked all the time. I went through the typical warranty protocol after checking chainline, proper lubrication, chain, chain teeth, front rings and finding out that these were not the sources of the chain suck. I manipulated the chainline, used different lubes, replaced chain and rings, but nothing, no improvement at all. The damn bike would chain suck in the parking lot! It would chainsuck any time the suspention was active. The only way to reduce it, not stop it, was to lock out the shock which essentially defeats the purpose of having a FS bike. And don't tell me that BS excuse that poor shifting is the cause, gimmie a freakin' break, most people who buy mtb bikes over a grand better know how to shift properly - and if that was the case, why is chainsuck COMMON and FREQUENT to this model and not any of the other bikes used by me and others. You also hear all these other BS excuses - poor lubrication, mud, lack of patience - COME ON!!! And yes, any idiot knows that all bikes will or can chainsuck from TIME TO TIME, get it??? But riding a bike which behaves like it is begging to chainsuck is NOT COMMON or NORMAL. Especially if MANY riders are reporting FREQUENT chainsuck on the same MODEL!! Are you paying attention to the key words outlined???
    I eventually received a replacement frame under warranty, but it continued to chainsuck, so I remained patient and upgraded to RF crankset and non fixed BB mainly because I have been wanting to buy them for some time. I didn't expect this to cure the chain suck, but maybe reduce it, but you know what??? IT DID NOT. IMO a person who drops over a grand on any mtb bike who remains patient after going through all of the above BS is not only in the minority, but must be a saint. I have owned and ridden many other full suspension bikes, none of which had chain suck problems - chain suck ONCE or TWICE, YES we all are aware that this is normal, but even my $600 K2 FS never chain sucked regardless of how muddy, lubed or poorly lubed, etc it was. So tell me something new instead or fess up and admit that many of the Genesis frames were poorly designed. If you are going to say that people don't know how to shift or correct a "simple" problem, you might as well tell me that bikes have two wheels!! If you own a GF Sugar that does not have this problem, good for you, you are lucky and enjoy your ride. But don't preech about how others are having this problem because a lack of patience or know how. I now ride a Cannondale and Ellsworth FS and have been riding them for quite some time and I don't have to waste one freakin' minute constantly worrying and messing with the drivetrain, if I lubed it obsessively or if the chainline is "correct." All I have to do is what any bike owner should have to worry about - maintain it, lube it, inspect it regularly and replace worn parts, in other words - very little.

  13. #13
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    [QUOTE=deathonwheels]I had a GF Sugar 3+ witch chain sucked all the time. I went through the typical warranty protocol after checking chainline, proper lubrication, chain, chain teeth, front rings and finding out that these were not the sources of the chain suck.


    I forgot to mention that this bike was BRAND NEW. So these "worn drivetrain" excuses floating around does not apply with the GF genesis frames/bikes.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by punkassean
    Trek told me that due to the short chainstays (Genesis geometry) there is less clearance than normal on the Cakes between the chainrings and the chainstay and that is a BIG part of the chainsuck problem. Also once the frame gets marred from one bad suckage ( ) it will be more likely to happen again and again. We've had a few Cakes with perpetual suckage and we've tried EVERYTHING to no avail. I used to believe chainsuck was striclty limited to a bad setup or poor maintenance but now I realise there are other issues too such as bad frame design. Sticky crappy grade aluminum chainrings don't help but are not the real culprit ultimately.


    I have been trying to tell people this for years, but if they want to continue amusing themselves with excuses, juggling new parts and throwing $$$ in the garbage, what can you do??? I battled with GF warranty and tried to explain this to them when I bought my sugar, and I know it was obvious to them already, but why would they fess up to it if it meant losing $$$ at that time. So remedied the situation by selling the P.O.S. frame. I have to give GF credit for amusing me and sending me a replacement frame despite the fact that they knew it was worthless. What else could they have done, you can't recall bike frames.

  15. #15
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    Care To Propose A Theory For The Chainsuck?

    I've gotta agree with Shiggy here. I don't undrestand how the frame design can infulence chainsuck. The only thing I could see causing some chainsuck is an overly flexy BB shell area. Having never ridden a Sugar I can't coment on it either way, but by the looks of it that frame should be stiffer in the BB than several of the high pivot suspension frames I've owned. Also the "genesis" geometry shouldn't really be a culprit. I think I've only owned 1 bike in the last 15 years that had chainstays LONGER that the Sugar's at 417mm (16.41") and have never experienced any repetitive chain suck on short 'stay frames.
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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by deathonwheels
    I have been trying to tell people this for years, but if they want to continue amusing themselves with excuses, juggling new parts and throwing $$$ in the garbage, what can you do??? I battled with GF warranty and tried to explain this to them when I bought my sugar, and I know it was obvious to them already, but why would they fess up to it if it meant losing $$$ at that time. So remedied the situation by selling the P.O.S. frame. I have to give GF credit for amusing me and sending me a replacement frame despite the fact that they knew it was worthless. What else could they have done, you can't recall bike frames.
    I will only say not everyone with a Sugar has the problems you did.
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  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    I will only say not everyone with a Sugar has the problems you did.
    As what is already obvious to us all and beaten to death is that NOT ALL SUGARS CHAINSUCK.
    I agree with you as I have spoken with many GF sugar owners who never had chainsuck problems, but their drivetrain setups were the same as mine (stock). So I am left with assuming - being that their bikes were no different than mine - that the chainsuck is independent of drivetrain setup or else they would be experienceing chainsuck as well. This is especially true if the Bonty chainrings are at fault, but I had chainsuck and they didn't. Also I gave my stock crankset to my friend who rides with them on his bike and guess what - he does not have chainsuck. So I am left with looking at the most simple explaination... hmmm.... maybe the frame??? But it was not worth any more of my time and money to investigate. All I can say is what I already stated in above post - for those who never had problems with chainsuck, you are lucky, so enjoy the ride. The same goes for any other bike or component - I see many negative posts about components and bikes that I have or had used and never expereinced the problems that these reviewers complain about, but you know what and READ THIS WITH YOUR FULL ATTENTION - just because you do not experience the same problems as others talk about does not mean that the problem does not exist.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fisty
    Did anyone ever come up with an explanation for why these rigs were so suceptable to chainsuck? There were alot of "guesses" but, I never actually heard what the definate cause was.
    I think the "problem" was not actually chainsuck, but the chain jamming between rings and stays after the chain drops off trying to shift from middle to small ring (same end result as chainsuck but with a different source) - that's the only time I've ever had this "problem" on my Fuel....I believe the majority of time it's not true chainsuck, but....semantics, I guess. Never had enough trouble with it to consider it a "problem". Keeping drivetrain clean, dialing drivetrain, and not shifting under extreme loads has all but eliminated it happening to me.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by deathonwheels
    As what is already obvious to us all and beaten to death is that NOT ALL SUGARS CHAINSUCK.
    I agree with you as I have spoken with many GF sugar owners who never had chainsuck problems, but their drivetrain setups were the same as mine (stock). So I am left with assuming - being that their bikes were no different than mine - that the chainsuck is independent of drivetrain setup or else they would be experienceing chainsuck as well. This is especially true if the Bonty chainrings are at fault, but I had chainsuck and they didn't. Also I gave my stock crankset to my friend who rides with them on his bike and guess what - he does not have chainsuck. So I am left with looking at the most simple explaination... hmmm.... maybe the frame??? But it was not worth any more of my time and money to investigate. All I can say is what I already stated in above post - for those who never had problems with chainsuck, you are lucky, so enjoy the ride. The same goes for any other bike or component - I see many negative posts about components and bikes that I have or had used and never expereinced the problems that these reviewers complain about, but you know what and READ THIS WITH YOUR FULL ATTENTION - just because you do not experience the same problems as others talk about does not mean that the problem does not exist.
    If the bikes are the same and the drivetrain is the same and the setup is the same and one rider has problems and another does not the simple answer is obvious.

    It must be the rider.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fuelish
    I think the "problem" was not actually chainsuck, but the chain jamming between rings and stays after the chain drops off trying to shift from middle to small ring (same end result as chainsuck but with a different source) - that's the only time I've ever had this "problem" on my Fuel....I believe the majority of time it's not true chainsuck, but....semantics, I guess. Never had enough trouble with it to consider it a "problem". Keeping drivetrain clean, dialing drivetrain, and not shifting under extreme loads has all but eliminated it happening to me.
    Yes indeed the chain would jam between the granny and the chainstay when it dropped or sucked. I reworked that area of the chainstay so that rather than jam when it sucks it just drops on bb housing. I have fiddled and faddled with my sugars and I still have some issues with chainsuck still but at least my chain granny and stay dont get destroyed. With regard to My original question in the original post, I guess the answer is no, they never did find the answer. Thanks for all your input!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fisty
    ...With regard to My original question in the original post, I guess the answer is no, they never did find the answer. Thanks for all your input!
    There is a very simple and effective solution: Run a single chain ring.

    One of my buddies ran a 34x12-34 1x7 on his Sugar and now on his Cake. A guard ring on the outside and a Jump-Stop on the inside and all is good. Gives him plenty of range for the Oregon Cascades (not talking flatlands riding).
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    If the bikes are the same and the drivetrain is the same and the setup is the same and one rider has problems and another does not the simple answer is obvious.

    It must be the rider.

    To be honest its easy to point fingers at what "it must" be, the frame, rider, my dog, the moon, etc. I always 'assume' because I may never know what the cause is. About my previous post, if my crankset is not chainsucking on my bike and its not chainsucking on my friend's bike, I rule it out. I neither had the time nor the luxury to trade my frame with another Sugar owner or some random rider/friend as I did with my crankset and BTW my friends chainsucked both of my frames when they rode my bike, the original and the warranty replacement. So you can go around and point fingers towards anything or anyone like an idiot, but I don't care what the cause is anymore because I got rid of the problem through e-bay. And if I am the problem as you say its a big mystery to me why me, my friends, and many other gf riders are causing their own chainsuck, especially because when I ride my current rigs and when I rode many others, I didn't have chainsuck issues, so if it is me and not the rig, then wouldn't I and all of the other "chainsuck causing riders" have chainsuck on any bike?? And while I'm at it - according to your logic all negative reviews on mtbr are due to the people who own the components/bikes not the product because you will always find someone who does not experience the issues discussed in the posts. Sounds pretty lame to me... better yet sounds idiotic.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    There is a very simple and effective solution: Run a single chain ring.

    One of my buddies ran a 34x12-34 1x7 on his Sugar and now on his Cake. A guard ring on the outside and a Jump-Stop on the inside and all is good. Gives him plenty of range for the Oregon Cascades (not talking flatlands riding).

    I thought you said that it is the rider that was the problem, so wouldn't the solution include you telling your buddy that he doesn't know how to ride a bike???

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by deathonwheels
    I thought you said that it is the rider that was the problem, so wouldn't the solution include you telling your buddy that he doesn't know how to ride a bike???
    He never had chainsuck on his Sugar when using a triple and it was not why he uses a single ring. A properly set up single ring will greatly reduce the chance of CS in any case.

    What I said was is your case the only obvious difference in a Sugar that sucked and a Sugar that did not suck was the rider.
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiggy
    He never had chainsuck on his Sugar when using a triple and it was not why he uses a single ring. A properly set up single ring will greatly reduce the chance of CS in any case.

    What I said was is your case the only obvious difference in a Sugar that sucked and a Sugar that did not suck was the rider.
    Well, if I caused my sugar to suck, then the bike must suck. If you have two sugars with same crankset set up and only one sucks, as you said, the only difference is the rider.

    And it follows logically that if you have two riders with same Ellsworth FS (Again, I am one of the riders) and there is no sucking to be had, then there is no issue at all.

    Put these two statements together and you have a rider, me, that sucks on a GF and doesn't suck on his Ells and what is the difference here?? It must be the silly GF frame.

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