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Thread: Bmx vs SS

  1. #1
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    Bmx vs SS

    Are BMX's SS drivetrains more efficient than those of mtb SSs?The chain of a BMX is way more beefy than that on an mtb single speed.So on papers it will stretch scantly and I guess that a subtle mtb SS chain will flex quite a bit under load,which it takes often.So will the difference be more than 1%?

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    "stretch" as a chain gets old is actually wear in the bushings between links. BMX chains and some "singlespeed" chains can actually be more prone because many are made without the plating and better bushings that are common on good geared chains and better SS chains. I guess that wasn't really your question though

    As far as I know temporary chain stretch under load is practically non-existent with either type.

    The biggest difference between BMX and MTB SS is really the size of the rings and cogs. Larger rings will feel a bit smoother and last a lot longer

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Window_shopper
    Are BMX's SS drivetrains more efficient than those of mtb SSs?The chain of a BMX is way more beefy than that on an mtb single speed.So on papers it will stretch scantly and I guess that a subtle mtb SS chain will flex quite a bit under load,which it takes often.So will the difference be more than 1%?
    The drivetrain of both is basically the same; BMX being a bit lower tech. Efficiency would be most effected by weight and the quality of the bearings. It is also a misnomer that the chain of a BMX is way more beefy as traditionally mtb SS used 1/8" BMX chains. If you follow trends in BMX you will see it is moving toward lighter drivetrains and stronger and more efficient bottom brackets. At some point you have to look at pupose. BMX are mostly huckster jump bikes, while mtb SS lean more toward XC. One would expect lighter more efficient drivetrains from a mtb SS, as they do not need to withstand the same abuse. So to answer your question, no SS drivetrains are actually more efficent. As far as beefy chains go, much more R&D has gone into 3/32 chains, which as boomn said, has created a stronger lighter chain with a longer life span than bigger and cheaper cousin.
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  4. #4
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    When I rode BMX I broke quite a few beefy 1/8" chains. Not from grinding or overly abusive stuff either. Also wore out drivetrain parts quickly because of the micro gearing. I ran spanish BB's which use slightly larger bearings than a euro threaded style, and they seemed pretty reliable. I would say SS MTB drivetrains are more efficient just because of the R&D work and the larger cogs/rings. You would probably get similar results to a BMX if you tried running micro gearing on a SS MTB.

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    Well, I rode a Profile BMX crankset with Ti spindle and profile sprocket on my SS. It was light, strong and flex free. BMX chains are nice because they don't blow up. Yes, you can get an ultra light BMX chain but but I hate snapping chains. I ran a Shadow half link chain to get the wheel base just right.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by pwh4130
    Well, I rode a Profile BMX crankset with Ti spindle and profile sprocket on my SS. It was light, strong and flex free. BMX chains are nice because they don't blow up. Yes, you can get an ultra light BMX chain but but I hate snapping chains. I ran a Shadow half link chain to get the wheel base just right.
    Nice. I have a Shadow Conspiracy half-link chain on one of my spare singlespeeds. Nice chain, but heavy!!! It definately looks unique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pwh4130
    Well, I rode a Profile BMX crankset with Ti spindle and profile sprocket on my SS. It was light, strong and flex free. BMX chains are nice because they don't blow up. Yes, you can get an ultra light BMX chain but but I hate snapping chains. I ran a Shadow half link chain to get the wheel base just right.
    Ehhh.... I've never had a chain "blow up" on me in 15 yrs of mountain biking. Inspect the chain regularly, clean it and change it when necessary. And don't get those $5 kmcrap specials.

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    Quote Originally Posted by p nut
    Ehhh.... I've never had a chain "blow up" on me in 15 yrs of mountain biking. Inspect the chain regularly, clean it and change it when necessary. And don't get those $5 kmcrap specials.
    I am only a couple of years into MTB riding but I am a pro BMX rider so I have blown up dozens of chains. Trust me, it sucks. A strong chain and stong forks are must haves on all of my bikes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by pwh4130
    I am only a couple of years into MTB riding but I am a pro BMX rider so I have blown up dozens of chains. Trust me, it sucks.
    My point was NOT that it doesn't suck when a chain breaks. But just because it's a BMX chain does NOT mean it's stronger than an MTB chain. If you have a quality chain, whether it be BMX or MTB, and you take care of it, you slim down the chances of breakage by a big margin vs. using some crap SS chain.

    Quote Originally Posted by pwh4130
    A strong chain and stong forks are must haves on all of my bikes.
    And not to speak for everyone else here, but I'm sure nobody wants a weak chain or anything else weak on the bike.

  10. #10
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    I'm currently riding ss 29er fixed with a 1/8 drivetrain. I don't know if it was a good choice to make switch to 1/8 but it seems to be working.

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    This again? How many times has this already been covered? 1/8" chains are no better and are usually worse than 3/32" chains. Here it is straight from Surly:
    1/2x1/8" chains vs. 1/2x3/32" chains. 1/2x1/8" chains suck. Run whatever you want, but bigger isn't better here. Yeah, they're wider, but according to manufacturer-supplied data, they're not stronger and they are definitely not of better quality. Multi-speed drivetrains is where the bucks are at, and chains that work on such drivetrains are where the manufacturers of chains showcase their innovations and developments in quality. The rollers are better, the plates are better, the pins are stronger, and the construction method (riveting procedure) is better on all multi-speed 3/32" chains. I guess if you grind your chainring and chain down the handrail every night at the local pub, a bigger 1/2x1/8 " chain will last longer, but most of us don't and it won't.

    Also, running a full half link chain is pointless, and is, at best, just a lot of extra weight. There's no need for more than a single half link in a chain.

  12. #12
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    ^from my experience with bmx, those chains made entirely from half-links suck! the plates stretch much faster than the bushings can wear out.

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    From Velosolo:Our advice would be to go with 1/8" for SS/fixed as it is stronger, more efficient and longer lasting.

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    Then Velosolo is full of crap

    There are some great 1/8" chains that are very strong (track chains), but to put out a blanket statement saying 1/8" chains are stronger is just idiotic.

  15. #15
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    Hmm...I've been using a gold KMC 9SL (hollow pin hollow link) chain on my BMX race bike. And at 200 pounds, and one of the faster guys locally (So Cal - Orange County) in the 41-45 cruiser class, I'm not easy on chains. I've been using the same chain since last December, and it has at least 60 race events on it, plus lots of practice. In other words, it's seen a lot of gate starts. To my surprised, it's still going strong (I hope I didn't jinx myself).
    May the air be filled with tires!

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by bad mechanic
    This again? How many times has this already been covered? 1/8" chains are no better and are usually worse than 3/32" chains. Here it is straight from Surly:
    1/2x1/8" chains vs. 1/2x3/32" chains. 1/2x1/8" chains suck. Run whatever you want, but bigger isn't better here. Yeah, they're wider, but according to manufacturer-supplied data, they're not stronger and they are definitely not of better quality. Multi-speed drivetrains is where the bucks are at, and chains that work on such drivetrains are where the manufacturers of chains showcase their innovations and developments in quality. The rollers are better, the plates are better, the pins are stronger, and the construction method (riveting procedure) is better on all multi-speed 3/32" chains. I guess if you grind your chainring and chain down the handrail every night at the local pub, a bigger 1/2x1/8 " chain will last longer, but most of us don't and it won't.

    Also, running a full half link chain is pointless, and is, at best, just a lot of extra weight. There's no need for more than a single half link in a chain.
    Why did my KM come with a 1/8 chain then?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by wollongongdave
    Why did my KM come with a 1/8 chain then?
    That's probably a question to ask Surly, not me. My guess, though, would be cost.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by wollongongdave
    Why did my KM come with a 1/8 chain then?
    dunno, but Surly does list their pre-built KMs as coming with 3/32 drivetrain. Did your lbs build it up for you?

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