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Old 08-23-2008, 05:48 PM   #1
maxgs
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Chain Stretching / Lesson Learned

So I've been having an issue getting my chain tightened properly. It seemed that I'd tighten the chain, only to check it later and find it loose again. Well today on my ride, I started noticing a new vibration at spirited speeds. Nothing radical, just a vibration I could feel through my hips that was also transmitting slightly through the mirrors. No vibration when running slowly, just on the high end. I assumed that my stiff rear suspension that is set up for the track was causing flat spots on the tires as a result of the rougher street roads ridden at a spirited pace. With the tire on a balancing jig, we were able to discern that this was correct. However, in talking through the problem with Patrick at Motorcycles Unlimited, he asked if I noticed the chain being slack in some spots and tight in others. At first, I assumed he meant tight linkages - but that was incorrect and he described that condition as "kink" in the chain. He was referring to checking the chain tension as you spin the wheel.

When I got home and remounted the rear, I started check chain tension as I turned the rear wheel about 20 to 30 degrees at a time. I was frankly shocked at the amount the chain had stretched in certain segments. The chain went from essentially perfectly adjusted to way to tight in 20 degrees of turn of the rear wheel. This, of course, can cause a speed dependent vibration. To fix the problem temporarily, you can adjust the chain to be appropriately tensioned at the tighter spots, appreciating that it might be a little slack in the loose spots. Basically, you compromise between the loose and tight parts of the chain.

Prior to observing this myself, I always assumed that a chain would stretch in a linear manner - basically stretching the same amount around the entire chain. Couldn't be further from the truth.

So, I need to order a new chain and I understand that's a good time to order new sprockets as well. BTW, the bike has 5,000 miles on it.

I though this was an interesting lesson learned. Perhaps some others can benefit from it too.

-Curt
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:51 PM   #2
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kinda low mileage for chain issues isn't it?
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:53 PM   #3
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kinda low mileage for chain issues isn't it?
That's what i was thinking. I usually get @ 8-10k out of chain and sprocket set. Guess it depends on your riding style though.
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
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kinda low mileage for chain issues isn't it?
Nope he is a big guy and rides the track
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Busa club. why did you not mention that? that makes things all nice and peachy
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:55 PM   #5
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me and witch pose alot though...maybe thats why.
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:55 PM   #6
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kinda low mileage for chain issues isn't it?
Says the guy who rides the 'busa!! The question is, why isn't your chain stretched. Ba ha ha ha.
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:56 PM   #7
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me and witch pose alot though...maybe thats why.
I will out pose you anyday SON!
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Busa club. why did you not mention that? that makes things all nice and peachy
Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength-
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:57 PM   #8
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you still have stock chain on your 1k right ??? 530 won't be that bad !! steel rear sproket right ????
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:58 PM   #9
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I will out pose you anyday SON!
you got a busa...i can't compete.
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Says the guy who rides the 'busa!! The question is, why isn't your chain stretched. Ba ha ha ha.

posing stretches no chain seriously though I know the busa chain is and will be changing it out before 10k miles. my rc51 chain made it to 12k. I kinda miss my shaft driven bikes and their lack of maintenance,lol. more time for posing.
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Old 08-23-2008, 05:59 PM   #11
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you got a busa...i can't compete.

that's right.... respect,lol.
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:02 PM   #12
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i have nearly 14k miles on my fz,no problem,but i seriously keep chain well lubed
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:03 PM   #13
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i have nearly 14k miles on my fz,no problem,but i seriously keep chain well lubed
And it's an FZ... ba ha ha ha.
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:05 PM   #14
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Quote:
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i have nearly 14k miles on my fz,no problem,but i seriously keep chain well lubed

a chain on a low hp bike will last longer than on a high hp bike. torque does marvelous things to a driveline,lol.
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:10 PM   #15
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poor maintenance
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:15 PM   #16
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poor maintenance
Hmmm, you think? 5000 miles and 8 oil changes, chain lube every two to four weeks and prior to each track event. Brake fluid already replaced three times. Bled at regular intervals and before each track event. Clutch fluid already replaced. 8 sets of tires, 5 sets of brake pads. Forks rebuilt twice. New rear shock. Front master cylinder replaced. New air cleaner already installed.
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:15 PM   #17
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High horsepower and torque eats chains, tires and sometimes
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:17 PM   #18
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Quote:
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Hmmm, you think? 5000 miles and 8 oil changes, chain lube every two to four weeks and prior to each track event. Brake fluid already replaced three times. Bled at regular intervals and before each track event. Clutch fluid already replaced. 8 sets of tires, 5 sets of brake pads. Forks rebuilt twice. New rear shock. Front master cylinder replaced. New air cleaner already installed.
Well dam Curt thats whats wrong, TOO much maintence
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:18 PM   #19
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Well dam Curt thats whats wrong, TOO much maintence
I just love the comments from the e-warrior peanut gallery.
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Old 08-23-2008, 06:21 PM   #20
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I just love the comments from the e-warrior peanut gallery.
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