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  1. #1
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    how long does your chains/cassettes last?

    So I built up my new supercommuter last year aroung august-sep or something. Put on a new 6cog 8sp hg61 cassette, and kmc x8.99 chain. Been riding about 26km a day, 5 days a week since then, minus like 15 weeks. I'm guessing maybe 45 weeks give or take. 5850km in total approximately. and in hours: about 245 hours (<--thats quite shitty durability)

    The chain is completely toast, over 1% maybe even 1.5. The cogs seems to have gotten worn too, no sharkfins though but still i see elongation of those teeth, I'm guessing I'll get one year more from the cassette. I put on a cheap ass shimano hg40 chain this time.

    I was expecting the chain to last a lot longer to be honest.

    How long does your chains and cassettes last?
    Was my expectations unrealistic?
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  2. #2
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    I'm not sure on actual time, I just check the chain regularly and replace as needed. As long as you replace the chain soon enough your cassette and rings will last a LONG time. My current cassette I got used and it has been in daily use for over 5 years now. Also, I find Shimano cassettes will last substantially longer then srams. Probably 3 to 1, or more.

  3. #3
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    how long does your chains/cassettes last?

    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    So I built up my new supercommuter last year aroung august-sep or something. Put on a new 6cog 8sp hg61 cassette, and kmc x8.99 chain. Been riding about 26km a day, 5 days a week since then, minus like 15 weeks. I'm guessing maybe 45 weeks give or take. 5850km in total approximately. and in hours: about 245 hours (<--thats quite shitty durability)

    The chain is completely toast, over 1% maybe even 1.5. The cogs seems to have gotten worn too, no sharkfins though but still i see elongation of those teeth, I'm guessing I'll get one year more from the cassette. I put on a cheap ass shimano hg40 chain this time.

    I was expecting the chain to last a lot longer to be honest.

    How long does your chains and cassettes last?
    Was my expectations unrealistic?
    Going On to my third chain in 2500 km. just hit .7%.

    I was told the 10 spd chain should last 1800 km but im getting a bit over 1200, could push it to 1% i guess.


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  4. #4
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    After some reading it appears that most users chains are worn out a lot faster that mine, I still think 1000h or so would be a reasonable life for a chain.
    Many machines are serviced in 1000h intervals. That being said I actually never cleaned my chain, I just soaked it in molycoat based homebrew when new and added whatever oil I could find when it appeared dry.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    After some reading it appears that most users chains are worn out a lot faster that mine, I still think 1000h or so would be a reasonable life for a chain.
    Many machines are serviced in 1000h intervals. That being said I actually never cleaned my chain, I just soaked it in molycoat based homebrew when new and added whatever oil I could find when it appeared dry.
    i use chain wax, have to use wax every 2-3 days or its squeeky.

  6. #6
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    I find it really depends on how well you maintain it. If you are diligent about cleaning an oiling it it can last 2500 miles. If you totally ignore it and splash some oil on it when you feel like it you might only get 800. I usually fall somewhere in the 1500 mile range.

    Like the others said, cassettes are dependent on how often you change your chain. If you replace it at .75 the cassette will have a long and happy life. Something I am striving for. Chains are relatively cheap in comparison. Your cassette is probably toast. As soon as you put a new chain on you'll probably find that it starts skipping. If you are right on the edge the skipping might stop after a few rides as the chain and cassette wear together but if you have gone too far they won't. Your chain-rings are probably at risk if you have pushed it to 1.5

  7. #7
    CB of the East
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    Here's a thread I started about this:
    http://forums.mtbr.com/commuting/che...ns-866644.html
    Lots of info.

  8. #8
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    On my road-going bikes, I think I tended to get around 1000 miles from a chain, more like 3000 from a cassette, even more from a chain ring.

    I never take my chains off to clean them. It's a $20 part. But I do try to wipe the outside and relube with Magic Unicorn bike lube when they get loud.

    I think chains are the consumable I go through fastest on a bike with rim brakes.

    Funny enough, my 'A' bike has a KMC chain right now. It's beginning to wear now, but it's 800 miles in and on a mountain bike. Hasn't hit 1/16" yet. It's the Ti Nitride chain because the vagaries of Internet pricing meant I didn't pay a premium and I thought it might look cool. The cassette's 1400 miles in and showing some visible wear and deformation, but it's performing fine.
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  9. #9
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    I'm going to measure the chain and take some pics of the cassette. Really Irritating since maybe I have to build up a new cassette, and these are the not too common anymore 8sp varieties. The chain I don't really care about nor the crap alu chainring, but the cassette..
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

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    Specialized sucks ass.

  10. #10
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    Yeah just what I suspected, the hg61 is no longer available. **** **** ****. Now its only **** alivio crap left.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  11. #11
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    5800 km is asking a lot from a chain. The cassette is now probably toast because you took too long to replace the chain.

  12. #12
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    Jenson still has a pretty good selection. And they're cheap! Not sure where you're located...
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  13. #13
    Mantis, Paramount, Campy
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    I replace the chain on my [moslty]commuter once a year whether it needs it or not.
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  14. #14
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    If anyone knows where to get 12-30 and 11-28 8sp hg61 cassettes I would like to know. or any hg60/61 8sp really.

    Also can anyone measure the thickness of a 9sp cog? Maybe I can use 9sp cassettes with the 8sp spacers but I'm fairly certain these are thinner and even faster wearing. The current available 8sp stuff is pretty useless since they are all 11-13-15 and so on, or labeled "use narrow 8sp chain" whatever the f that is.

    I'm gonna measure my cogs and chains thickness and post them up later.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  15. #15
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    I have two chains that I rotate. While one is on the bike the other is soaking in a jar of mineral spirits. When the one on the bike is no longer running smoothly (you can hear the difference when you pedal, not a squeak but sort of a low mashing or grinding noise when you put pressure on the chain) it goes into the jar and the one in the jar gets lubed and goes on the bike.

    With this system I get on average about 2000 miles out of a chain.

    My last cassette had something like 15,000 miles on it when I changed it. Probably could have gone further but I just decided it was time.

    If you want your cassettes to last longer, invest in one of these...they only take a second to use:

    Amazon.com : Park Tool CC-3.2 Chain Wear Indica : Chain Wear Indicator : Sports & Outdoors

    Be diligent about replacing worn chains and your cassettes will last a long time.

  16. #16
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    Car Bone:

    8 spd Shimano cogs are 1.8mm thick, 9spd Shimano cogs are 1.78mm thick
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  17. #17
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    Well, on my commuter, the chain is spliced together from three different chains from the chain box. They're all the same speed, and from two different manufacturers. I've had them on my ride for over 4 years now. I've ran single speed, 3x1 and 3x8, with no wear on the cassette of chainrings. It's probably about time to get a new chain, or find discarded ones that still have plenty of life. You don't get the title "Premium Dirtbag" for nothing.

    The key to long drivetrain life is a clean chain. Also, appropriate shifting technique and adequate chain length for the gearing. I wipe my chain after most rides, always if it was wet, and reapply chain lube and let sit overnight; wipe again in the morning (like we all should) and ride. Occasionally, I'll take it off and let sit in diesel (or kerosene) over night, wipe clean and reinstall.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    I replace the chain on my [moslty]commuter once a year whether it needs it or not.
    Thanks! That's the reason I don't have to buy new parts.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    If anyone knows where to get 12-30 and 11-28 8sp hg61 cassettes I would like to know. or any hg60/61 8sp really.

    Also can anyone measure the thickness of a 9sp cog? Maybe I can use 9sp cassettes with the 8sp spacers but I'm fairly certain these are thinner and even faster wearing. The current available 8sp stuff is pretty useless since they are all 11-13-15 and so on, or labeled "use narrow 8sp chain" whatever the f that is.

    I'm gonna measure my cogs and chains thickness and post them up later.
    ebay

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by rogbie View Post

    The key to long drivetrain life is a clean chain.
    Thanks! That's the reason I don't have to buy new parts.
    Haha! You dont want my chain then. I've never cleaned a chain in my life
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I think chains are the consumable I go through fastest on a bike with rim brakes.
    Any idea why this is?


    On another note, does the type of bike significantly affect how fast a chain wears? I commute on a fat bike.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    Haha! You dont want my chain then. I've never cleaned a chain in my life
    Then you're foolishly wasting your money and a lot of resources.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    Car Bone:

    8 spd Shimano cogs are 1.8mm thick, 9spd Shimano cogs are 1.78mm thick
    Thats a tiny small difference, do you think I would notice any bad things (like bad shifting, skipping chain and so on) if I simply cobbled together an 8sp spaced cassette out of 9sp cogs and used an 8sp chain?

    Btw is there 2 standards for 8sp chains now?? I read "narrow" 8sp chain somewhere.

    well here "For Narrow 8-speed HG chains"

    Shimano Alivio HG51 8 Speed MTB Cassette | Chain Reaction Cycles

    I bought my hg61 cassettes because these were the best ones, the most durable ones that I could completely tear apart and build my own from. What 9sp shimano series is the best one without a "carrier"?
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

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    Specialized sucks ass.

  24. #24
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    Yes, HG and IG Shimano cogs are different thickness and used slightly different chains.
    Most things are "narrow" HG.
    Basically match Shimano IG with IG.
    Shimano HG, Sachs, SRAM, Suntour, Campy, etc can all run any 6/7/8spd chain
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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shayne View Post
    Yes, HG and IG Shimano cogs are different thickness and used slightly different chains.
    Most things are "narrow" HG.
    Basically match Shimano IG with IG.
    Shimano HG, Sachs, SRAM, Suntour, Campy, etc can all run any 6/7/8spd chain
    so if the cassette is names IG-something = IG chain
    HG something = HG chain
    amirite?

    Here are some pics of my current cassette, it was hard to get something useful out of the camera so I employed the spray and pray technique and just cropped everything to get at least something useful.

    Is this cassette ruined??


    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass8.jpg
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass7.jpg
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass6.jpg
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass5.jpg
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass4.jpg
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass3.jpg
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass2.jpg
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cass1.jpg
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  26. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sgraffite View Post
    Any idea why this is?


    On another note, does the type of bike significantly affect how fast a chain wears? I commute on a fat bike.
    The only logical explanation as to why chains wear out so fast on bikes compared to machines is the operating enviroment. Remember most machines are serviced at 1000h intervals, and its not even certain the chains are changed then if the machine has chains. my bike did 250h and the chain in totally worn out, it was probably worn out at 100h. So we are getting fukd by subpar materials and extreme prices.

    and what did you expect? this is the bike biz. Selling shittier and shitter **** at higher and higher price for absolutely no gain in durability over the years. I'm willing to bet a 1950ies chain lasted 3x as long. at least.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  27. #27
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    LOL. Those pictures are disgusting.

    I'm not willing to work very hard to keep my drivetrain clean. But I do try to wipe down the chain after every ride. I think it keeps things running cleaner. And I think you're right - bicycle chains wear out fast because they're exposed. I actually don't think there's anything wrong with the material selection.

    To my eye, your cassette looks fine. Dirty, but fine. However, I judge mine by how they perform with a new chain. I try to keep spares of my wear parts so I can just do it as needed.
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  28. #28
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    Motors are high speed, low torque.. bicycles are high torque, low speed. A roller-chain is not really designed for that usage scenario, but it works well as a consumable in cycling because there are so few other options (only belt & shaft really).

    The cassette looks like toast to me unfortunately. I change my chain when it starts getting loud and oiling it does not reduce the noise. This is usually every 1500-2000 km.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    LOL. Those pictures are disgusting.

    I'm not willing to work very hard to keep my drivetrain clean. But I do try to wipe down the chain after every ride. I think it keeps things running cleaner. And I think you're right - bicycle chains wear out fast because they're exposed. I actually don't think there's anything wrong with the material selection.

    To my eye, your cassette looks fine. Dirty, but fine. However, I judge mine by how they perform with a new chain. I try to keep spares of my wear parts so I can just do it as needed.
    wtf do you mean??

    I'm dunking it in molykote based homebrew for a few hours, initially. The black **** you see on there is the original molycoat. No ****. its really messy. since the molycoat gets everywhere. and you can't get it off. Only break klean will get it off.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by 43st View Post
    Motors are high speed, low torque.. bicycles are high torque, low speed. A roller-chain is not really designed for that usage scenario, but it works well as a consumable in cycling because there are so few other options (only belt & shaft really).

    The cassette looks like toast to me unfortunately. I change my chain when it starts getting loud and oiling it does not reduce the noise. This is usually every 1500-2000 km.
    It looks like toast to me too. but not completely toast. thats why i put on the cheap ass hg40 chain. I'm not gonna throw it out just yet. Lets see what this baby still have left. 2k km right. I'll keep that in mind. I usually work in months. sounds like 6 months for me.

    My chain care consists of: dunking in white spirit, dunking in acetone, spraying with ether. then soaking in homebrew consisting of teflon high temp spray (lots), molykote that we have at work, molycote longterm plus 2 or something, really sticky **** (lots), hydraulic oil 25% and motor oil 25% and crc 5.56 like 5% and then texaco multifak ep2 grease. shake. soak chain for hours. shake. done. this is probably the best lubrication on the entire planet.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  31. #31
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    I think the big challenge in bicycle drivetrains is keeping them clean. Your homebrew sounds super sticky to me. For exposed parts like this, I think that's counter productive. Sure, using heavier compounds makes it stick longer. But it also hangs onto dirt well. So it could be accelerating your wear.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    My chain care consists of: dunking in white spirit, dunking in acetone, spraying with ether. then soaking in homebrew consisting of teflon high temp spray (lots), molykote that we have at work, molycote longterm plus 2 or something, really sticky **** (lots), hydraulic oil 25% and motor oil 25% and crc 5.56 like 5% and then texaco multifak ep2 grease. shake. soak chain for hours. shake. done. this is probably the best lubrication on the entire planet.
    Holy Christ! That's a homebrew to rival all others. It also sounds like the worlds best dirt magnet. Seriously. Your bike is not a CATERPILLER drivetrain. I might suggest you try a light/clean approach?

    I won't tell you I scrub/wash my chain (as in soap and water) at least every month, dry it, and then give it a good coat of either WD40 or TriFlow. I also lube/wipe down my chain before/after every ride.

    Last chain was 2 years old and right at time to be replaced. Its a road bike so it doesn't see the grime like a mountain bike, but still running the original cassette, from 2008.....you guessed it. F*cking Campy! Love that stuff.

    I do the same with my MTBs.....Try keeping your drivetrain clean and lightly lubed. See if it makes a difference.

  33. #33
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    Yeah, that lube sounds way overboard, and is probably counterproductive if you're letting the dirt cake on.

    I've been using lightweight chainsaw bar oil for a few years, and am pretty happy with the results. Goop some on every couple of weeks, spin the cranks a bunch of times, wipe off the excess (because it's very sticky). And then I keep a rag handy, and wipe the chain down every couple of days to keep things clean. It's pretty low effort. But every winter I expect to wear out 1 chain (somewhere north of 2000km).

  34. #34
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    The problem your chain is dying is because you're killing it!

    Those are the types of pictures mechanics take and post for others to marvel at.

    All that dirt in all that grease is like a liquid sandpaper wearing down everything and anything.

    No component will take that sort of abuse.

    Before you ride your bike again, get some Dawn dish soap (the ultra strong stuff) and a stiff bristled brush and go to town on your cassette, chain, chainrings, jockey (pulley) wheels, and both derailleurs. Then spray the bejeezus out of it with a hose (a pressure nozzle recommended). It's going to take a lot of time to get that thing clean, think an hour or more. Then get some chain lube and go to town on the chain.

    A properly lubricated bike chain only has lube on the inside of the rollers. Bike chain lube is a penetrating lubricant. That is why you always wipe the chain after lubrication. Using a grease that attracts dirt is going to ruin your drivetrain.

  35. #35
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    Lol, yeah I have been a bit lax on cleaning my bike it seems. I bought a bottle of white spirit to clean everything with. I usually wipe the new chain down before putting it on. Think I'm gonna do chain rotation this time around, maybe use 3 chains in cycles.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  36. #36
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    I think you're making all of this more difficult than it is.

    Not that regular serious cleanings and a chain rotation won't work. But we're talking $20 parts here. It just seems like a lot of trouble to me.

    Try an HG50. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised, and it won't require disassembly and respacing. And, try just keeping stuff cleanish and lubricating with a lighter oil.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  37. #37
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    If the chain and cassette are already past 1% why change them?

    You will now have to replace both, maybe even the rings too, so just run it as it is. My commuter is well past 1%, goodness knows how worn it is, and it still works fine.

    I used to use 9-speed but it wore out too fast. Most of the bikes are 8-speed now. I use the cheap shimano 8-speed cassettes (HG40/50), I don't think they do any other types now, and they're fine. Durability wise there is nothing between them. The more expensive ones have better coatings on them and maybe more metal drilled away but other than that they seem the same to me.

    I also use KMC Z/X8 chains and they last well, much better than yours! Again, I think the only difference between them is the coating.

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    If the chain and cassette are already past 1% why change them?
    Yeah, exactly. Once the damage is done, just ride it until it starts skipping. One of the guys at work has been riding the same drivetrain pretty regularly for a decade. It's impossible to get it to shift perfectly, but it still works surprisingly well.

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I think you're making all of this more difficult than it is.

    Not that regular serious cleanings and a chain rotation won't work. But we're talking $20 parts here. It just seems like a lot of trouble to me.
    It takes hardly anytime to rotate chains. If I can make a chain last twice as long that's money in my pocket.

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by newfangled View Post
    Yeah, exactly. Once the damage is done, just ride it until it starts skipping.
    It never will. It'll just get to the point where it won't shift properly, which can take years!

    In the past I've tried rotating three chains on my bike and running the whole lot until it's worn out to see which method works out the cheapest. Basically, unless you are using expensive cogs, wearing it all out is cheaper because it takes years.

    My commuter is built up of old bits I had in the shed and the cassette I put on it was worn and skipping in the two highest gears. Rather than bin it I figured I'd try to wear the cassette to the chain, and it worked! I just kept riding it, either avoiding those two gears or when using them not putting full-power through them. After a couple of months the cassette wore to fit the old chain that was on there and it doesn't skip any more. That drive train is ancient but it still works fine.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    It never will. It'll just get to the point where it won't shift properly, which can take years!

    In the past I've tried rotating three chains on my bike and running the whole lot until it's worn out to see which method works out the cheapest. Basically, unless you are using expensive cogs, wearing it all out is cheaper because it takes years.

    My commuter is built up of old bits I had in the shed and the cassette I put on it was worn and skipping in the two highest gears. Rather than bin it I figured I'd try to wear the cassette to the chain, and it worked! I just kept riding it, either avoiding those two gears or when using them not putting full-power through them. After a couple of months the cassette wore to fit the old chain that was on there and it doesn't skip any more. That drive train is ancient but it still works fine.
    My cassettes cost 50$! and now I can't even buy them anymore. And if they will only last 1 or 2 years each I'm gonna run out of them very soon. I was expecting to get 5 years out of a cassette.
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    I was expecting to get 5 years out of a cassette.
    No chance. Not if you actually use the bike anyway. You'd get that out of the old seven-speed stuff but those days are gone.

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    I guess so..

    I still have a few 8sp cassettes left though. Now I'm looking to invest in 9sp stuff. Because when those 8sp are gone there will only be complete crap 9sp cassettes to buy.
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    Not really. The cheap Shimano 8-speeds are fine. Still last longer than the equivalent 9-speed. Plenty of HG-41 and GH-50 out there.

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    But the current ones only has 11-13-15 as the smallest cogs. Thats pretty useless if you are building custom cassettes out of them.
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    What range are you looking for? I think there's an 8-speed 12-26 with nice steps. If you're using appropriate chain rings for your fitness and preferred cadence, that should be pretty good. I used to really like the 12-27 9-speed. Think I have one of those in a drawer, even.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    But the current ones only has 11-13-15 as the smallest cogs. Thats pretty useless if you are building custom cassettes out of them.
    Why do you need to build your own cassettes?

  48. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    What range are you looking for? I think there's an 8-speed 12-26 with nice steps. If you're using appropriate chain rings for your fitness and preferred cadence, that should be pretty good. I used to really like the 12-27 9-speed. Think I have one of those in a drawer, even.
    I'm running 12-28 now with a 42 up front. And would like to try out a 11-30 with a 44 up front soon.

    I just had a look at sram 850 series cassettes. I noticed some things i didn't like in their specs.
    steel SAPH 440 (really shitty steel comparable to 1016), its "ni-chrome plated" sounds like the cheap ass tools you sometimes get from china. There is an even lower grade just named "steel". The expensive stuff says only "chrome plated satin" I'm guessing hard chromed here. Sometimes the road cassettes in one series uses the "saph 440" designation but the mtb ones only get "steel". in cassettes with carriers the best ones uses "forged aluminum" for the carrier. the 990cassette used "pearl ni-chrome plating" (purely cosmetical it seems), the 980 cassette gets only aluminum carrier, both use the saph 440 steel.

    Has anyone got anything to say about sram 850/990/980/970/some 950 cassettes and durability? (these all use the saph 440) compared to any shimano I mean.

    https://sram-cdn-pull-zone-gsdesign....nual-rev-a.pdf

    technical manual 2010 11.75mb https://www.sram.com/service/include-archived/sram/44

    Does anyone know what material shimano uses in their cogs??
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Why do you need to build your own cassettes?
    I don't need to build anything, but I'm running 6sp now with the 8sp cassettes. So I prefer to get all cogs smaller than 20 so I can build what I want out of just 2 cassettes.
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    You get Shimano 11-28, 11-30, 11-32 and 11-34 8-speed cassettes.

    The 11-28 is 11,13,15,17,19,21,24 & 28. Is that not just about exactly what you want?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    You get Shimano 11-28, 11-30, 11-32 and 11-34 8-speed cassettes.

    The 11-28 is 11,13,15,17,19,21,24 & 28. Is that not just about exactly what you want?

    And I want one with 12-14-16-18-20-22 and so on to go with that one.
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    And I want one with 12-14-16-18-20-22 and so on to go with that one.
    Why do you want a cassette with one-tooth differences between the gears?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Why do you want a cassette with one-tooth differences between the gears?
    I dont.

    I want 2 different cassettes with as many as possible individual tooth cogs between lets say 11 and 24 or so.

    So I can choose whatever cogs I want to use when building my 6sp cassettes.

    with the hg61 8sp I could get all individual cogs smaller than like 22 or so with only 2 different cassettes.

    It appears my remaining cassettes are CS-HG70-1 (or I).
    the 11-28 is 11-12-14-16-18-21-24-28
    the 11-30 is 11-13-15-17-20-23-26-30

    And with 2 of those I can build 2 well spaced 6sp.
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  54. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    I'm running 12-28 now with a 42 up front. And would like to try out a 11-30 with a 44 up front soon.

    I just had a look at sram 850 series cassettes. I noticed some things i didn't like in their specs.
    steel SAPH 440 (really shitty steel comparable to 1016), its "ni-chrome plated" sounds like the cheap ass tools you sometimes get from china. There is an even lower grade just named "steel". The expensive stuff says only "chrome plated satin" I'm guessing hard chromed here. Sometimes the road cassettes in one series uses the "saph 440" designation but the mtb ones only get "steel". in cassettes with carriers the best ones uses "forged aluminum" for the carrier. the 990cassette used "pearl ni-chrome plating" (purely cosmetical it seems), the 980 cassette gets only aluminum carrier, both use the saph 440 steel.
    I was wondering if you might be riding with a 1x drivetrain. For me (I have a somewhat high cadence and apparently a somewhat low level of shame) a 39t or 34t chainring is a pretty strong preference on the road. The thing is that adding a second or third chainring really bumps my range. I rode a triple on the road for a long time. Mostly 'cuz I didn't know it's not cool, but talk about a "have your cake and eat it too" drivetrain. Now my road bikes have a 50/34 and a 46/34 crank. I use 12-26 to 11-28 cassettes. Kinda depends what falls into my lap, what's on my team form, that kind of thing.

    For me, I don't think anything above 48:14 is a useful ratio. That means 46:12 is already higher than I'd pay to have.

    I've had a 34:32 gear on one of my road bikes, and I found that to be nice off-road, but haven't really missed it on the road. 34:27 seems to be plenty low for me. One of my commuters had a 34:28 low, and that was low enough for getting a load of text books up a hill, though I wouldn't have objected to lower. 1:1 seems to be a popular low among the tour guys.

    I don't know if you're really open to discussing your general approach. If so, I'm curious to know what kind of a bike it is and how you're using it. Maybe some pictures from a little further away than the grime on the cassette.

    As far as materials selection, I'm finding that information less and less useful at work lately. So, fine, I know something's made out of 1018 steel. But is it in the as-rolled condition or heat treated? What kind of heat treatment? Plated? Forged? It can make a pretty big difference. My instinct is that the best wear life would come from a cog that had hardened teeth. They're not subject to a lot of load, really, so fancy steel would be a little silly, IMO, but then from where I'm sitting, 1018's already not fancy.

    Honestly, though, I've been fine with SRAM 850-level stuff. It shifts nicely if the rest of the drivetrain's tuned alright.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

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    I use the same bike both on road and off, swapping the wheels and pedals to suit. It has 28/38/48 chainrings and an 11-32 cassette and I can do anything with that. Can't keep up with road bikes, not when they go for it anyway, but can keep up a good pace on the road and I get up off road climbs that force my mates to walk.

    I don't understand why you feel you need such close ratios?

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    ^^^
    Ever do speed work or pack riding?

    I'm sympathetic to the OP wanting close ratios. I like that too, when I'm on the road. Otherwise, I'd probably put 11-34 cassettes on all my bikes and never think of it again. But if I'm pushing myself, that 13 to 11 shift can feel monstrous. And if I'm riding with other people, having a couple really small shifts available in the middle of my range is nice for matching their speed and my preferred cadence at the same time.

    Solo riding at medium effort, meh, doesn't really matter. Off-road, I don't really notice and I want the range.
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  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post

    I don't know if you're really open to discussing your general approach. If so, I'm curious to know what kind of a bike it is and how you're using it. Maybe some pictures from a little further away than the grime on the cassette.

    As far as materials selection, I'm finding that information less and less useful at work lately. So, fine, I know something's made out of 1018 steel. But is it in the as-rolled condition or heat treated? What kind of heat treatment? Plated? Forged? It can make a pretty big difference. My instinct is that the best wear life would come from a cog that had hardened teeth. They're not subject to a lot of load, really, so fancy steel would be a little silly, IMO, but then from where I'm sitting, 1018's already not fancy.

    Honestly, though, I've been fine with SRAM 850-level stuff. It shifts nicely if the rest of the drivetrain's tuned alright.
    steel with less carbon than about 0.3% is not heat treatable, sure you might be able to cold roll it or something. its 440mpa uts and about 300 or so yeild. Its actually quite a bit weaker than good aluminum... It most likely comes as sheet that they simply stamp out the cogs from.

    My bike a 26er chromag sakura, commuterized with dropbar, bags and fenders. I run it all year round, all kinds of weather. My commute is 26km round trip.
    I can average about 25km/h or so. Its a 1x drivetrain. I built the bike up to be durable and long lasting, and simple, and unfinicky to adjust and set up. Long service intervals. I think I have a big enough range with my current cassette but next casse I build will be a 11-30 6sp and a 44 up front, I then get to both have the cake and eat it
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  58. #58
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    I actually don't have close ratios. I'm running 12-14-17-20-24-28 right now, and could probably remove one cog and respace the rest and still be happy.
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    You can still carburize. Seems unlikely, but case hardening makes a lot of sense for the application. I think it still tends to wear better than aluminum, even without hardening, just because of the structure of the material. But grades of steel below A36 or 1000-series really don't play into what I do.

    I was starting to catch that you're building 6-speed cassettes. But with 8-speed spacing? What kind of a freehub do those go on? I guess what I'm getting at is, why not 8- or one of the other commercially available models? What kind of shifter?

    I feel like I actually get really good performance and reliability from the 3x9 drivetrain on my older mountain bike. The 2x10 on the new one, too, but it's more expensive. I want my bikes to be like tools too; for me just going with pretty standard setups has been a good way to achieve that.

    Given your averages, I'm not sure what you're doing with a 44:11 gear ratio. What's your cadence like?
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  60. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    You can still carburize. Seems unlikely, but case hardening makes a lot of sense for the application. I think it still tends to wear better than aluminum, even without hardening, just because of the structure of the material. But grades of steel below A36 or 1000-series really don't play into what I do.

    I was starting to catch that you're building 6-speed cassettes. But with 8-speed spacing? What kind of a freehub do those go on? I guess what I'm getting at is, why not 8- or one of the other commercially available models? What kind of shifter?

    I feel like I actually get really good performance and reliability from the 3x9 drivetrain on my older mountain bike. The 2x10 on the new one, too, but it's more expensive. I want my bikes to be like tools too; for me just going with pretty standard setups has been a good way to achieve that.

    Given your averages, I'm not sure what you're doing with a 44:11 gear ratio. What's your cadence like?
    I have no idea what cadence since I tend to hang on to the gears pretty long. I guess it varies. I just feel I spin out a little too often now.

    I use a steel freehub. TP stealth hubs. The shifter is a 9sp xtr that I modified for drop bar use and I'm running a jtek to make it work with 8sp spacing.

    Before when I ran a 9sp 1x I felt the ratios were too close so I wanted something I didn't have to shift 2 gears every time on.

    also when running big chainwheels up front you get the problem that they don't fit very good, creating weird chainlines. So then its good to be able to space the cassette where I want it on the hub.
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    Ok, you want the tight ratios. I can kinda see where you guys are coming from and I guess if you're being super competitive every little advantage helps. I've just never been that competitive or that picky about my bike.

    I also don't understand why, if you want more ratios and spin out too often, you run a 1X6 drive train! Call me stupid but hey, I have 3X8 and can climb anything and rarely spin out so my kinda stupid seems better to me?

    Do you enjoy the misery of doing things the hard way?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    Ok, you want the tight ratios. I can kinda see where you guys are coming from and I guess if you're being super competitive every little advantage helps. I've just never been that competitive or that picky about my bike.

    I also don't understand why, if you want more ratios and spin out too often, you run a 1X6 drive train! Call me stupid but hey, I have 3X8 and can climb anything and rarely spin out so my kinda stupid seems better to me?

    Do you enjoy the misery of doing things the hard way?
    No pain, no gain

    the 12-28x42 is actually quite good. But it seems I can increase both low end and top end so why not.
    I'm not trying to win the tdf here.

    I don't like 2x and 3x drivetrains. for me its better to have 1x and do the best i can with that.
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    I ended up cleaning it.
    how long does your chains/cassettes last?-cassetteclean.jpg
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    I actually don't have close ratios. I'm running 12-14-17-20-24-28 right now, and could probably remove one cog and respace the rest and still be happy.
    So you've got a 9-speed shifter, the range you like is 12-28, and you don't really want tight jumps.

    How about a 9-speed 11-32? The middle seven give you 12-28, without a whole lot of change in jumps. Using only the middle seven means your chainline doesn't get as jacked up as if you used all nine. 9-speed stuff is plentiful, you only need to buy one, and you don't need to reassemble it. You also get to get rid of one of the parts on your bike.

    For cadence, count the number of times your right knee comes up in fifteen second and multiply by four. It's close enough. Obviously you wouldn't want to do this when you're in a complicated part of your commute. Under 90 is pretty low on the road. Ironically, mountain bikers often have cleaner pedaling form, at least if they've been at it a while, because loose surfaces are a lot less forgiving of inconsistent power.
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    I'm gonna think about it for a couple of days. Maybe I'll get 9sp stuff this time or go with sram 8sp.

    When I was putting my new shimano hg40 chain on I couldn't get the kmc 8sp quicklink to work. wtf. So I tried an sram 8sp. couldn't get it to close either. wtf is up with that?? Is this normal? The shimano quicklink was so bent I could never ever have gotten it on there. I had to put on another kmc chain.
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    I'm gonna think about it for a couple of days. Maybe I'll get 9sp stuff this time or go with sram 8sp.

    When I was putting my new shimano hg40 chain on I couldn't get the kmc 8sp quicklink to work. wtf. So I tried an sram 8sp. couldn't get it to close either. wtf is up with that?? Is this normal? The shimano quicklink was so bent I could never ever have gotten it on there. I had to put on another kmc chain.
    If you didn't already try this: put the quicklink in the loaded section of chain (the upper section that's transmitting your pedaling force) and use force on the pedal to finish engaging it.

    On the original topic, it varies for me. In a year where I'm using the commuting bike for after-work training rides, I might use up two chains a season. More distance, more power, more shifting, more wear.

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    Well, I did it, I ruined another cassette by not changing the chain soon enough on my winter commuter. It doesn't get a ton of miles so it seems like the chain wore out really soon. It was worn way past 0.75 and the cassette was toast.

    In better news, the cross bike was just breaking the 0.75 mark with 2200 miles+- so I replaced the chain and the cassette was fine.

    Strava has the ability to track mileage on components so I entered the new parts to see what I get out of them for life.

    These are great for quick-links. http://www.amazon.com/Park-Tool-MLP-...k+chain+pliers

  68. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    Well, I did it, I ruined another cassette by not changing the chain soon enough on my winter commuter. It doesn't get a ton of miles so it seems like the chain wore out really soon. It was worn way past 0.75 and the cassette was toast.

    In better news, the cross bike was just breaking the 0.75 mark with 2200 miles+- so I replaced the chain and the cassette was fine.

    Strava has the ability to track mileage on components so I entered the new parts to see what I get out of them for life.

    These are great for quick-links. http://www.amazon.com/Park-Tool-MLP-...k+chain+pliers
    I'm going to get similar ones, but cheaper.

    My cassette is semi toast. the smallest cog 12t slips like crazy. I'm still going to use it though, until its starts working again. After the winter I replace everything. I have feeling I might be running both 11 and 13 as smallest cogs in the future and just swapping chainrings to get the same top speed. I will have to start machining new spacers soon. I have saved lots of scrap parts of brass and bronze just for this.

    going to try that trick too mechbgon.
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    When I was putting my new shimano hg40 chain on I couldn't get the kmc 8sp quicklink to work. wtf.
    They can be very, very tight. I've had problems closing them as well. They seem to be tighter than they were years ago.

    And I still don't get why you are going to all the trouble of making a 6-speed work rather than just running 1X8 or 1X9. The chain line will be ok as long as the cranks are in the right place.

  70. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Pig View Post
    They can be very, very tight. I've had problems closing them as well. They seem to be tighter than they were years ago.

    And I still don't get why you are going to all the trouble of making a 6-speed work rather than just running 1X8 or 1X9. The chain line will be ok as long as the cranks are in the right place.
    cranks are not in the correct place since I'm running a 42 as "middle" ring kinda, with a detoothed bigger ring as chainguard on its outside. I'm running the 42 as close to the cstays as possible.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

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  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    I'm going to get similar ones, but cheaper.
    On the subject of cheap chain tools. Don't buy this chain tool: http://www.amazon.com/Topeak-Super-B...cm_cr-mr-title
    I bought it because it was cheap and got decent reviews. It broke after <10 uses. I had to revert to the one that replaced it which had about 5x the material in the area that broke.

    Chain pliers are pretty low tech so you should be safe. I didn't think 12 bucks was that much for the Parks.

  72. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by car bone View Post
    cranks are not in the correct place since I'm running a 42 as "middle" ring kinda, with a detoothed bigger ring as chainguard on its outside. I'm running the 42 as close to the cstays as possible.
    Sounds ok to me? If I was running one front ring that's got to be around where I would want it.

  73. #73
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    I can only cram in a 36 or 38 in the real middle pos, frame is designed for big tires, so my chainline is even further out than the standard one, which itself is moved 5mm further out compared to old stuff. I'm going to machine a few new spacers for the bb, smaller increment ones, so I can fine tune this better.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    On the subject of cheap chain tools. Don't buy this chain tool: Amazon.com : Topeak Super Bicycle Chain Tool : Bike Hand Tools : Sports & Outdoors
    I bought it because it was cheap and got decent reviews. It broke after <10 uses. I had to revert to the one that replaced it which had about 5x the material in the area that broke.

    Chain pliers are pretty low tech so you should be safe. I didn't think 12 bucks was that much for the Parks.
    Yeah maybe I'll just get the parks and be done with it.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    Strava has the ability to track mileage on components so I entered the new parts to see what I get out of them for life.
    I use this function as well, but it's worth remebering that a thousand miles on a road bike on the dry pavement of July does not cause the level of drivetrain wear of a thousand miles on a mountain bike in the commuting grime of January.

    Measuring the links with a steel rule as per the Sheldon Brown method works well, although I'm a little bit more liberal with cassette wear. And I also move my sort-of-worn cassettes and chains down the bike pecking order from the race rig to the winter commuter, DH bike, etc.
    The above statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration

  76. #76
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    ^^That would be easier to do if I didn't have 6,7,8,9 & 10 speed bikes. I'd swap chains out and run them into the ground but I'd never keep them straight.

  77. #77
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    There is actually a cassette checking/wear tool. Made by Rohloff. Think I'm gonna make my own since its discontinued. There are vids of it on youtube.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    ^^That would be easier to do if I didn't have 6,7,8,9 & 10 speed bikes.
    Yes. I've actually been avoiding 10-speed upgrades for a few years partly for this reason, I currently have 4 active 9-speed bikes.

    However I've been getting mildly annoyed that the "new" 10-spd road bike cannot share wheelsets with my cross bike without a cassette change, so my 9-speed-holdout stable may be starting to show cracks.
    The above statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration

  79. #79
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    I've been annoyed since 9 speed. If I get a new bike I'll be into 11. I really hope they stop there.

  80. #80
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    They'll never stop. I don't know if the next thing is just stuffing another cog in there or if it's going to mess with frames. But there'll be a next thing.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  81. #81
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    ^ Heck. I rolled out the old bike in 2007: 2 x 5. Went to 3 x 7, then bit the bullet for 3 x 10 with the change form 27' to 700C wheels. Bypassed the 8 and 9 speed systems a year before Campy came out with 11 cogs. The errand bike went from 2 x 6 to 1 x 9 (11-34 & 42).

    What I like about the 13-14-15-16-17-19-21-23-26-29 (with a 53-42-30, now a 48-36-26) is that it gives me the narrow range of my old racing 14-15-17-19-21 (used with a 48-42) and the breadth of the old 14-17-20-14-28 touring block (used with a 52-42). I do miss being able to stay in cadence on the errand bike like I can on The Duchess.

  82. #82
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    I will second this recommendation, I got one after getting tired of struggling with stubborn links. When it arrived and I tried it, I was like, why didn't I get one sooner?!

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    I have been struggling to get a year on my chains...

    Been changing them at 1% stretch on a park tool.

    I had three wheels sets now two. I had four cassettes now three.
    (Salty winter got them).

    I still have two new chains but they skipp pretty bad on all the cassettes if I put them on...

    So I dug into the pop bottle that holds all the used chains in an oil bath...

    Put one on and viola, I am four months on this chain....so looks like in the end after about seven years, I might get another seven out of all the old stuff I got lying around.

  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    I've been annoyed since 9 speed. If I get a new bike I'll be into 11. I really hope they stop there.
    'Why 11?? Have you seen the prices of those cassettes and chains?? Its fuking insane. I can get 10 cassettes for one of those. I'm getting new 8sp cassettes and a few 9sp. Proven lo-tech, just what a commuter needs. I have never had so little trouble as with my current bike. I didn't even clean it for the last 6 months.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

  85. #85
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    Shimano 105 has gone 11-speed. SRAM's 1x MTB groups have gone 11, deeper into the range at least.

    A lot of people are going to be going to 11- for the same reason I've gone 10- on my newer mountain bike: that if you order a complete bike with a certain spec level, that's what you end up with.

    The price premium I'd pay to build a bare frame isn't necessarily insane to me. But it's definitely significant, enough that I decided I'd rather just accept the spec Kona's product management thought I might like than buy everything separately.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  86. #86
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    If I bought a ten-speed bike I would remove the transmission and replace it with eight.

  87. #87
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    I don't believe you.
    "Don't buy upgrades; ride up grades." -Eddy Merckx

  88. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    I don't believe you.
    Who cares?

  89. #89
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    Quote Originally Posted by AndrwSwitch View Post
    Shimano 105 has gone 11-speed. SRAM's 1x MTB groups have gone 11, deeper into the range at least.

    A lot of people are going to be going to 11- for the same reason I've gone 10- on my newer mountain bike: that if you order a complete bike with a certain spec level, that's what you end up with.

    The price premium I'd pay to build a bare frame isn't necessarily insane to me. But it's definitely significant, enough that I decided I'd rather just accept the spec Kona's product management thought I might like than buy everything separately.
    I build from the ground up. Even though its at least twice as expensive as a complete I figured its still the cheapest way to get what I really want. Don't need to throw away anything either so its enviromentally friendly

    :mr pig.

    I actually believe you.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.

    Quote Originally Posted by iheartbicycles View Post
    Specialized sucks ass.

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