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  1. #1
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    New question here. Use of the Rohloff Caliber 2 chain checker?

    I have a Rohloff Caliber 2 chain checker. This tool has two sides, one for use with aluminum sprockets and one for use with steel sprockets:

    > If side A of the Caliber 2 tool sinks in fully, allowing the Rohloff Caliber 2 to lie
    > flat on the chain rollers (Fig. II), the chain wear factor has reached 0.075mm
    > per link. To protect ALUMINUM sprockets from premature wear, chain
    > replacement is recommended at this time. If side S of the Caliber 2 tool
    > sinks in fully, the chain wear factor is 0.1mm per link. The chain should now
    > be replaced to avoid skipping and to prevent wear on STEEL sprockets.

    Like most bikes, mine has steel cassette cogs and aluminim chainrings. When Rohloff talks about sprockets, are they talking about the cassette cogs or the chainrings? Since the bike has both steel and aluminum sprockets, should I just use the side of the tool for alumimum sprockets?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Bodhisattva
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    I go by the aluminum side because the aluminum rings will wear before the steel sprockets and the goal is to try & prevent any expensive premature replacements.
    In fact, I have Ti rings and still go by the aluminum side.
    Works great.
    “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”

    ― Albert Einstein

  3. #3
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    Same here. Rings wear slower than cogs, and the tool is attempting to protect the small and medium sized cogs that wear fastest. Nevertheless, I use the 'A' side as a preventive measure.

    Rohloff's 0.075mm marks the same 0.5% wear that the 12-1/16" ruler method offers.

    Note that the ruler method remains more accurate than the Rohloff tool (or Park's tool, for that matter). Once you get a No-Go condition from the tool, you can break out the ruler and you'll find that you've got some miles left on the chain.

    The Rohloff & Park tools both give premature No-Go indictions because they are affected by slop between the roller and the chain pin. This slop has no affect on chain pitch (the 1/2" link-to-link spacing) on an evenly worn chain.

    The convenience of these tools is great, though, so I continue to use my Rohloff Caliber until I get a No-Go indication, then make a final decision when 24 links measure out to 12-1/16".

  4. #4
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    But does changing the chain extend other components' life?

    Sorry to hijack this a bit (& it is a repeat of an earlier thread), but aren't you better just riding the whole drivetrain into the ground and then replacing the lot?

    My drivetrain usually lasts about 3,000 miles and I then replace the whole lot (chain, cassette, and rings) when the chain starts to slip as the rings usually go at the same time. The parts are usually LX or XT cassette, SRAM chain and Shimano chain rings (varying from LX to sub-deore).

    I recently bought the Rohloff chain checker with the intention of replacing the chain when it wore beyond the .75% (?) wear level. But I find that I have almost reached this after not quite 600 miles.

    So, does it make sense to swap the chain now (and again every 600 miles I guess) at around $15-$20 a throw, or just ride the whole lot into the ground? With the latter approach I will be up for about $85- $100 including the chain, while if I replace the chains regularly I'm sure I still won't be able to the extended the life of the other parts to make up for the cost of the additional chains.

    Wombat

  5. #5
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    I used to go through about 3 chains per cassette. My rings would vary but I could count on the middle ring going first.

    The reason you're showing such quick wear is partly due to the tolerance of the chain.

    Imagine the roller is a wedding ring, and the pin is a finger. Some chains have tight tolerances (small ring on a fat finger) while others are lesser so (big ring on a skinny finger).

    The chain checkers that Rohloff and Park sell are attempting to measure the pitch from pin to pin, but that's not practical because the roller obstructs the pin.

    So instead, both guages measure roller to roller. In doing so, the two rollers the guage is pressing against are displaced opposite to one another.

    This causes the "roller gap" to be factored into the measurement. It's not a whole lot, and the amount of "roller gap" is averaged over the dozen or so links the guage measures across. But 0.5% isn't much, either, so the guage will always err conservatively and give a false No-Go indication before the chain is truly expired.

    That's why double checking with the ruler is important once you begin getting No-Go indications from any of these Park or Rohloff guages. Perhaps you'll find that using the 'S' side is more accurate once the error is factored in.

  6. #6
    Bodhisattva
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    I'd like to know where you can replace your chain, rings & cassette for $80. I certainly can't replace my Xt/XTR drivetrain for anywhere near that price while a chain costs $20.
    “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”

    ― Albert Einstein

  7. #7
    On MTBR hiatus :(
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Squeaky Wheel
    I'd like to know where you can replace your chain, rings & cassette for $80. I certainly can't replace my Xt/XTR drivetrain for anywhere near that price while a chain costs $20.
    That, too, is a good point.

    While I can pick up my SRAM flavor of choice, the PC59, for about $13 on sale, I somehow just managed to sell a USED XT 9-speed cassette on ebay for $60. GAH!

  8. #8
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    Additionally...

    (I just read your other thread, but I'll keep my replies here)

    ...rings and cogs do wear with normal use, yes. But when you can keep a chain with 1/2" pitch running, the load transfer is carried by more teeth. This results in a reduced rate of wear.

    On the other hand, as your chain "stretches" past 1/2" pitch, the pedaling load is carried by fewer and fewer teeth at any given time. Not only does this increase the rate of wear, it becomes very easy for the chain to disengage the chainring under heavy load (numerous riders, myself included, will attest to the OTB-while-grinding-up-a-hill phenom).

    I don't have a vested interest in your maintenance schedule, but all the same I encourage you to play with your chain checker in combination with a ruler and attempt to determine an interval that works for you.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Squeaky Wheel
    I'd like to know where you can replace your chain, rings & cassette for $80. I certainly can't replace my Xt/XTR drivetrain for anywhere near that price while a chain costs $20.
    It was May this year that I last bought the components and they worked out as follows:

    1x 8 spd LX cassette 11-28 = $24
    Sram PC 59 chain = $14
    Shimano mc 20 cranks 22-32-42 = $26
    Total = $64

    I swap the steel rings over to my M571 LX cranks. I have found no difference in wear with an 8 speed chain (Shimano - usually LX, or Sram - PC 48/58/68) and the same goes with a PC 69 chain. As I have bikes with 8 and 9 speed cassettes it is easier to just buy the same chain. I haver also found no difference in longevity between LX and XT cassettes, so I usually stick with LX these days.

    I see that Jenson now has 9speed LX cassettes for $35 (8 speeds still seem cheaper), the chain can be still be had for the above price and Airbomb has the cranks for $33. This totals $94, but you can probably still find the cranks (& maybe the cassette) for less.

    Wombat

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Speed�b Nate
    I don't have a vested interest in your maintenance schedule, but all the same I encourage you to play with your chain checker in combination with a ruler and attempt to determine an interval that works for you.
    Thanks for the advice. I will use a ruler to see how much pin to pin wear there is once the rohloff checker hits the time-to-replace point. I think I have an almost new conex chain hanging around (put it on a tired drive chain a year or two ago, but left it too late and it skipped in all gears; I fixed that by putting the old chain back on and riding all the components into the ground) and see what sort of difference it makes to overall longevity.

    Wombat

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