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  1. #1
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    Chain Length for 1x11

    So, i recently snapped my NX rear mech, and replacing it with Shimano XT GS mech. Replacing the chain as well as the old one got busted from the crash (SRAM Chain to match my cassette).

    My question is regarding chain length. Cassette is NX 11-42 with 30T chainring.

    Do you think i can match the new chain length to the old one, which is at 56 pair of links (a pair = 1 thick and 1 thin)? Or do i have to re-measure since it's a different rear mech? The original 56 pair of links came from factory (2018 Kona Process 153) - FYI.

    Also, If i use the "Chain Length Formula", it came up with 53 pair of links - that's a big difference.....

    I know that the 56 pair links chain worked great with my snapped NX derraileur, so i'm now confused....

    Any assistance would be greatly appreciated.
    Kona Process 153 29er

  2. #2
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    I've always followed this guidance...
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O0YibMDWBAw
    12 Santa Cruz Heckler
    18 Kona Process 153 AL/DL (27.5)...

  3. #3
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    So you're changing out your shifter too, right? You can't use SRAM shifters with XT or vice versa.

    As long as your cassette and chainring aren't changing size and your chain was sized correctly, you will be fine matching the length of the old chain. Following the advice in the video above would be good just to make sure. It's easy.

  4. #4
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    Thanks all, that video is very helpful. Not sure why it didn't came up with i googled for chain length video yesterday.

    Yes, i'm getting XT on mech and shifter, but keeping NX cassette (will upgrade to GX cassette and XD driver next year with a new wheelset). I think i figured out why the "Chain Length Formula" only gave me 53 links vs. 56 links on the old chain - it didn't account for Full suspension and the fact that you need longer chain when the suspension is fully compressed.

    Just waiting for all the parts to arrive from jenson and can't wait to get on the trail again.

    I just hope my hanger is still true. I eye-balled it yesterday and it looks perfectly normal, so we'll find out when i install the new mech i guess.

    One more question - with narrow wide chainring, you have to orient the chain properly right? meaning "outer" link goes to wide and "inner" link goes to narrow?
    Kona Process 153 29er

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bim6180 View Post
    One more question - with narrow wide chainring, you have to orient the chain properly right? meaning "outer" link goes to wide and "inner" link goes to narrow?
    You don't have to worry about which part of the link is wide and which is narrow. The chain won't really fit the wrong way.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    You don't have to worry about which part of the link is wide and which is narrow. The chain won't really fit the wrong way.
    Ah, good to know. Thanks
    Kona Process 153 29er

  7. #7
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    I wouldn't bother with moving from a standard freehub to a XD driver if it were me, you won't really be gaining much by doing that, could as well spend the $$ and go for a lighter, Shimano/Standard driver cassette.

    Quote Originally Posted by bim6180 View Post
    Thanks all, that video is very helpful. Not sure why it didn't came up with i googled for chain length video yesterday.

    Yes, i'm getting XT on mech and shifter, but keeping NX cassette (will upgrade to GX cassette and XD driver next year with a new wheelset). I think i figured out why the "Chain Length Formula" only gave me 53 links vs. 56 links on the old chain - it didn't account for Full suspension and the fact that you need longer chain when the suspension is fully compressed.

    Just waiting for all the parts to arrive from jenson and can't wait to get on the trail again.

    I just hope my hanger is still true. I eye-balled it yesterday and it looks perfectly normal, so we'll find out when i install the new mech i guess.

    One more question - with narrow wide chainring, you have to orient the chain properly right? meaning "outer" link goes to wide and "inner" link goes to narrow?
    But, you do have to put the chain on the right way when you install it, with stamps/wording facing out, side with nothing on the inside. Also, do yourself a favour and buy some KMC 10spd Re-Useable Quick Links, makes life so much easier, works with all 10spd chains.

    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    You don't have to worry about which part of the link is wide and which is narrow. The chain won't really fit the wrong way.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    But, you do have to put the chain on the right way when you install it, with stamps/wording facing out, side with nothing on the inside. Also, do yourself a favour and buy some KMC 10spd Re-Useable Quick Links, makes life so much easier, works with all 10spd chains.
    SRAM chains aren't directional, but the quick link is. Just install with the arrow pointing forward.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    I wouldn't bother with moving from a standard freehub to a XD driver if it were me, you won't really be gaining much by doing that, could as well spend the $$ and go for a lighter, Shimano/Standard driver cassette.



    But, you do have to put the chain on the right way when you install it, with stamps/wording facing out, side with nothing on the inside. Also, do yourself a favour and buy some KMC 10spd Re-Useable Quick Links, makes life so much easier, works with all 10spd chains.
    Thanks. Yes, the chain is SRAM GX chain to match my NX 11-speed cassette, and i believe SRAM chain is not directional. (with shimano chain, the label has to face forward as you mentioned).

    On the Drive, i'm making a new wheelsets anyway, and GX 11-42 cassette is lighter than Shimano's 11-42. Shimano 11-46 is a no go due to their crazy 9 teeth jump to the biggest cog.
    Kona Process 153 29er

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    SRAM chains aren't directional, but the quick link is. Just install with the arrow pointing forward.
    awesome. Good to know. Tks
    Kona Process 153 29er

  11. #11
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    one more question... does new chain come lubed? or do i have to lube it first before using?
    Kona Process 153 29er

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by bim6180 View Post
    one more question... does new chain come lubed? or do i have to lube it first before using?
    They are lubed. Just size, install, and go.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    They are lubed. Just size, install, and go.
    tks all again for the help
    Kona Process 153 29er

  14. #14
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    Totally missed/forgot he said SRAM chain. Quick Link is directional, make sure arrow is pointing in the direction of travel while pedaling forward.
    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    SRAM chains aren't directional, but the quick link is. Just install with the arrow pointing forward.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by s0ckeyeus View Post
    So you're changing out your shifter too, right? You can't use SRAM shifters with XT or vice versa.

    As long as your cassette and chainring aren't changing size and your chain was sized correctly, you will be fine matching the length of the old chain. Following the advice in the video above would be good just to make sure. It's easy.
    You can use SRAM shifters with Shimano derailleurs as long as they are for 11spd. 11spd has the same ratio, 10 spd doesn't.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by McKenzie View Post
    You can use SRAM shifters with Shimano derailleurs as long as they are for 11spd. 11spd has the same ratio, 10 spd doesn't.
    Thanks, but it's only an extra $40 ish to get XT shifter, so might as well switched it to match the rear mech.
    Kona Process 153 29er

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