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  1. #1
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    Question for those that use half links

    I did a search and came up with nothing.

    My next bike will have sliders. I realize I can mess with chain stay length (to some extent) using a half link. I use PC-1 chains, and what I'm wondering is if there's any harm to putting the half link in right at the end of the chain and having it directly connect to the PC-1 master link?

    I had a friend with a PC-1 that he half linked at the master link (I think), and he had a chain break, but I never verified where it broke.

    Those who want to condemn me for my choice in chains can go ahead and do so. I've been running them for eight or nine years at work and on the trail, and I haven't broken one yet (I did bust a roller, but that wasn't a failure so I won't count it).
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  2. #2
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    I ran a half link for several months. The chain did break, and it did break at the Half-Link.

    Unfortunately it was during a race, fortunately it was less than 1/2 mile from the finish. (it is very difficult to repair a half link trailside)


    I had the halflink in the middle of the chain.
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  3. #3
    Linoleum Knife
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    Dunno about the PC1, but on an 8 speed chain the half-links did not work well with the master link. I had to break the chain in the middle, install the half-link, and then use the 8speed master link at the other break.

    No problems since installation, but that was only about 100 miles of racing.

  4. #4
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    The one time I did run a half link I tried it next to the master link. The chain didn't run right. It made a noise on every rotation. I moved it over a few links and everything was fine. The chain was a KMC K710SL. If it works for you, go for it. Check it out though. I know you're a light rider and if you have been happy with the POS PC-1 you'll be fine probably be fine with a half-link.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by teamdicky
    I did a search and came up with nothing.

    My next bike will have sliders. I realize I can mess with chain stay length (to some extent) using a half link. I use PC-1 chains, and what I'm wondering is if there's any harm to putting the half link in right at the end of the chain and having it directly connect to the PC-1 master link?

    I have experimented Heavily with Half-Link's, with 3/32 and 1/8 chains and drivetrains. The problems and breakage that i encountered were due mostly to cheaply made and Ill-Fitting half-links. Installing it at the Master-Link may be ok if your Half-Link has a CLOSE to the same ID tolerances between plates as your Chain does. I have found that using a Sloppy fitting Half Link allows it to Pull itself apart in a relatively SHORT amount of time. I have also made my OWN Half-Links using an Old Half Link Chain and other old chains of Various widths for Parts, installing ROLLERS and PINS that match your chains' Inner Plate width makes them fit and work better and Last MUCH Longer, I then carefully Press it all back together, this can all be tricky but not hard to do. With a Custom Fitted Half Link, you can much more closely Match the ID of your chain. Having a Digital Caliper is Helpful too when measuring the ID of your plates and Custom Half Link construction.
    I found that MY Half-Links worked MUCH better than the Cheaply made Store-bought half links, based on years of tests. Half LInks work better and last Longer when used on the Better fitting 3/32 Chains and Drive Trains. 1/8 Chains are a bit loose fitting to begin with as most Cogs and Chainrings are set up for 3/32 Chains unless you go Custom.
    Also keep in mind that changing the Tooth Count on your Cog or Chain Ring by 1 tooth could eliminate the Need for a Half Link in many cases. Chainstay length is a Factor too, but you will have Sliders and probably will NOT Need a Half-link anyway, Having used BOTH adjustable systems, i have found it is more critical with ECCENTRICS. Hope this Helps.
    Last edited by UN-COG-KNEE-TOE; 03-01-2009 at 12:20 PM.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by UN-COG-KNEE-TOE
    I have experimented Heavily with Half-Link's, with 3/32 and 1/8 chains and drivetrains. The problems and breakage that i encountered were due mostly to cheaply made and Ill-Fitting half-links. Installing it at the Master-Link may be ok if your Half-Link has a CLOSE to the same ID tolerances between plates as your Chain does. I have found that using a Sloppy fitting Half Link allows it to Pull itself apart in a relatively SHORT amount of time. I have also made my OWN Half-Links using an Old Half Link Chain and other old chains of Various widths for Parts, installing ROLLERS and PINS that match your chains' Inner Plate width makes them fit and work better and Last MUCH Longer, I then carefully Press it all back together, this can all be tricky but not hard to do. With a Custom Fitted Half Link, you can much more closely Match the ID of your chain. Having a Digital Caliper is Helpful too when measuring the ID of your plates and Custom Half Link construction.
    I found that MY Half-Links worked MUCH better than the Cheaply made Store-bought half links, based on years of tests. Half LInks work better and last Longer when used on the Better fitting 3/32 Chains and Drive Trains. 1/8 Chains are a bit loose fitting to begin with as most Cogs and Chainrings are set up for 3/32 Chains unless you go Custom.
    Also keep in mind that changing the Tooth Count on your Cog or Chain Ring by 1 tooth could eliminate the Need for a Half Link in many cases. Chainstay length is a Factor too, but you will have Sliders and probably will NOT Need a Half-link anyway, Using Both systems, i have found it is more critical with ECCENTRICS. Hope this Helps.
    I noticed these same problems as you. I found that one half link fit a little better than another and yet they still required too much fuss with the chain tool to get working smoothly. In the end I had my first chain break when my half link peeled apart and I have never used one since.

    It sounds too me like many people do run half links without problems like I had. I will never consider them a reliable tool though

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by UN-COG-KNEE-TOE
    Hope this Helps.
    That was a lot of help.

    Dunno if I wanna experiment that much. I wasn't looking for a half link in order to make up for a lack of adjustability in the sliders. I was hoping to run the sliders close to the full forward position to keep the chainstay length as short as possible.

    Reliability will take precedence over chainstay length since I'm looking at an endurance race set up.
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  8. #8
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    You're better off then changing your cog sizes (whilst keeping the same ratio) to adjust the chain length then for your case. You get to do math! Yay!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Schmucker
    You're better off then changing your cog sizes (whilst keeping the same ratio) to adjust the chain length then for your case. You get to do math! Yay!
    Rather still deal with longer stays.

    Swapping rings isn't worth the effort on my Middleburns.
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  10. #10
    Hairshirt Rider
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    Counting me, there are four regulars (non-clyde types) in our group who use half links, 2 of us use PC-1. We are not connecting the master link to the half link. None of us have ever broken an SS chain.
    Last edited by Loudpawlz; 03-02-2009 at 07:26 AM.

  11. #11
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    I broke a half link once... The link was on its third chain (probably not the best practice, but) and a years worth of use. I do run my half links right at the power link (on sram 8spd chains). I do modify the half links slightly to get the link to fit. I have to file the the part of the roller that sticks above the surface of the male end of the half link. This is done so that the 8spd power link can be removed and installed. There may be something wrong to what I am doing, but I have had relatively no problems with doing it this way.

  12. #12
    Retro Grouch
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    They do make 1/2 link chains and I think they come with master links..
    Just one more rep and I get the toaster!

  13. #13
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    I started out running a KMC half link with an 8 speed Sram chain- if you do this unless you are going to do a custom mod don’t try it because it will fail if you can even get it on.

    Then I moved the half link to the middle of the chain and with some massaging it works pretty well. That was until it blew out on my last week. Not a pretty site-

    I am now running a KMC 8 speed chain (they make a single speed as well) with the KMC Half link and so far so good. It came together pretty well (once again I put the half link in the middle of the chain).

    KMC Half Link with a KMC Chain is starting to seem like a good idea to me. And I can guarantee you that I am no lightweight and I ride it really hard.
    I ride a singlespeed because it's harder.

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