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Old 19 Mar 2009
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Chain keeps getting loose

I have a cheaper chinese made bike that I am cruising around Peru with and the chain constantly gets loose. I tighten it all the time and make sure everything is tight frequently. I even took a link out of the chain because eventually i reached the end of my adjusting bolts. What is happening? Could it just be a cheap shitty chain or am i missing something? Thanks
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Old 19 Mar 2009
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what sort of state are the sprockets in. Seems like you're experiencing a lot of wear on both the chain and sprockets.
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Old 20 Mar 2009
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replace chain!

Hi fluidmovement02, I would change both front and rear sprockets and replace the chain with a quality item (DiD or equive) and lubricate them every 600miles or sooner if the environment is dry and dusty/wet etc, all chains stretch a bit during there life but it looks like the china chain is made from cream cheese just my observations (use to have a chinese machine)
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Old 22 Mar 2009
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TDMalcolm you are quite right in your observations about chinese chains, they are indeed made from cream cheese and the sprockets are usually made from Wensleydale.

If you have had to remove a link Carl then the chain is already past its servicable life and you should change it ASAP before it snaps on you. If memory serve me right DID quote that if a chain grows 20% in length then that is the end of it's life.
But as we all know manufacturers always factor in huge margins but the rule of thumb is if you are having to adjust a chain every day then it's
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Old 23 Mar 2009
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In my limited experience when a chain starts stretching at a rapid rate it is close to the end of its lifespan and nothing you can do will save it. What's more, continued use may wear out front and/or rear sprockets, and this can disable your bike even faster than the chain itself.

A good chain, on the other hand, rarely seems to need adjusting (if an o-ring or x-ring it doesn't even need lube--merely cleaning after significant exposure to water or dirt) and sprockets seem to last and last--I've gotten almost 20k miles on a chain, 30k on a rear sprocket, 20k on a front without making much of an effort.

Hope that helps.


(just arriving home after 38,000 miles on the KLR)
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Old 23 Mar 2009
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I would also check the condition of your rear wheel bearings ,pull the cush drive out and check it out and the bearing in there. If that one is worn the sprocket can run out of alignment and effect chain tension.
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Old 28 Mar 2009
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most ting tong bikes are surprisingly well made with a couple of caveats- bad tyres and poor chain+sprockets. replace these asap
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Old 20 May 2009
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"they are indeed made from cream cheese and the sprockets are usually made from Wensleydale."

You guys are making me hungry ... time to visit the kitchen!

Also check the dampers in the rear wheel hubb as you may find excesive wear on the rubber. I had the same problem including bad qaulity bolts that hold the rear sprocket down.

What's that I hear - oh it's the fridge.
To those who say it can't be done - stand aside for those who are already doing it.
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Old 20 May 2009
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Just a thought here. I assume you are not riding on the smoothest of roads. You need to leave about and inch free play in the middle of the bottom row of chain. measure this with the bike fully loaded and you sitting on it, resting on its suspension, not centrestand. I think the previous person who wrote 20% meant 2% and it was just a typo.
But once they start to go, they will go, so fit a new chain, and check both sprockets are good. Any one thing bad will ruin the other two. Is your rear suspension stiff enough for the load?
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