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Chain keeps going tight

Discussion in 'Bling and Appearance' started by OscarA, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. Need help and feels kind of a goose for asking but here goes.
    I got myself a VTR250 a few weeks back and decided I better tighten the chain as it had way to much slack in it, around 5-7cm. Checked the manual and it states 2-3 cm is ideal so up she goes on the rear stand and I tighten it.
    I take the bike of the stand check the tightness again and all seems fine. I ride the bike to work and back (30km round trip) and re-check the chain and to my disappointment it's tight as hell less than 1cm of slack. I Re adjust the chain make sure the rear wheel is tight as hell and off I go again for a ride. Re-check it a few times and it's fine but a week later it's tight as hell again.
    What am I doing wrong. I'm loosening the rear axle nut undoing the lock nut then adjusting the chain with the adjustment nut then tightening the lock nut and rear axle nut again.
    It's not rocket science but I'm stuffing it up.
    I suspect the chain might be crook but I was told by the previous owner he replaced the chain and front sprocket a few months before selling the bike.

  2. Are you redo'ing the Axle nut and chain tensioners tight enough? If not then the axle might slide back under acceleration and tighten the chain.

    If thats plenty tight then yeah it could well be the chain, howerver they generally get slacker and slacker with age not the other way around (although they do develop tight spots sometimes)

    I dont think Ive bought anything where the owner hasn't lied to me about something on it.
  3. doesnt putting it on rear stand make it tighter, so when you adjust it, it becomes twice as tight?
  4. the weight will make a difference but he said he was measuring it when the bike is on and off the stand
  5. If the axle is not tight enough, the wheel will skew under acceleration.

    Does your bike have actual chain tension adjusters? Are they locknutted tightly?
  6. Thanks for all the replies guys.
    The chain was fine after I took it off the stand and was fine for a week. I checked it yesterday and it was tight but after writing this post I have checked it again and it's now fine.
    Looks like the chain might be buggered and perhaps have a kink or two.
    I'll put it back on the stand the chain a good look.
  7. You're meant to adjust the slack at the tightest part of the chain.
  8. *semi-hijack*

    I just did mine today on my VT250 (same method for adjusting as the VTR)
    I've found at some points the chain now has about 20-25mm slack (As per the manual) but rotating it around to a tight spot (where the wheel virtually stops from the resistance) the chain only has <5mm slack so I may have to loosen it again..
    That seems like a hell of a difference, but its only had 5 months and 4,500kms on it.
    Also within the course of a few weeks it went from ~30mm play to about 120 and started slapping the centrestand and chain guard every time I backed off

    A quick google search shows an average 10,000 with minimal wear, up to 20,000kms before replacement

  9. You always adjust it at the tightest spot. Give it 25mm play there and then keep rotating to the slackest spot. If it's more than 50mm you'll probably need to replace it.

    For the OP - Another trick, when you've adjusted it recheck as soon as you've done up the axle nut. Sometimes the axle nut will pull the wheel back a mm or so which in turn tightens up the chain again. If that keeps happening adjust for 25mm slack after the axle nut is tightened.

    How long do chains last??? not accounting for lubing, if you're rough on gear changes once the chain has already started to wear, it will stretch at an accelerated rate. Be smoother on gear changes and it'll last longer.

  10. That seems pretty low KM to have a tightspot unless its not been cared for. I usually get between 15-30 000km before my chains either get tight spots, or are past the servicable limit.
  11. Dude, Both my bikes are on OEM chains and have 50K+ kms and STILL have plenty of life left. +1 for regular chain maintenance.

    Dragon, did you leave your chain maintenance up to the mechanic?
  12. I leave nothing up to the mechanic, I do it all myself

    Since its a daily use bike I'm very easy on it and am rarely doing anything rough with it, I also tend to stretch out the intervals between maintenance because of that.

    ~1000km between chain cleaning and 2-3,000 for oil.. the rest is just when its needed

    Is it possible that something can flick up off the road and get stuck in the chain causing it to self destruct in a very short period of time?

  13. 4500kms for a (new?) chain to start showing wear and tight spots... and you do all the maintenance yourself... did you replace the sprockets with the last new chain??? Somethin doesn't add up mate with this picture: "easy commutes", "doing all the work myself" and low chain life...
  14. +1

    Money on sprockets weren't changed when the chain was. That'll destroy a chain in no time.
  15. Are you adjusting it at the tightest point? On the stand is NOT the tightest point. That is where the front sprocket, swingarm pivot and rear sprocket are in line. I usually adjust it so that the play is to specification when I'm sitting on it. (Adjust, sit, check, adjust, etc. or use an assistant).

    Obviously if not, when you sit on it, it's going to tighten up. Then when you get off it won't release as easily because the chain is binding the suspension from releasing rather than it hanging freely.

    My money is on the above. Tight is much worse than loose.
  16. Correct about the sprockets.. see when I got the bike the chain was in horrible condition and needed to be changed stat, no sprockets were available though so I figured I'd wait until the next chain swap to do them.

    I (still) haven't found anywhere in Australia that can supply me with new sprockets but I may order from overseas so that I can change it all once back from Christmas holidays. Didn't think it would die so soon though, and that re-using sprockets made quite THAT much of a difference.
    The rear sprocket was in quite good condition when I put the new chain on, but the front may not have been, can't see it from the outside and I haven't dismantled that specific part of the bike to see..

    So who knows where I can get sprockets for a 25 year old vt250f? (preferably just cheap factory replacements, nothing fancy)

  17. well, whoops thats probably the solution then :$ go get some new sprockets, and a new RK or similar decent chain and enjoy!

    I find that I clean my chain roughly every 1000km, or when I start to see a buildup of grit and oil. its that dirt grit that does ALOT of damage, it turns your chain into one big loop of metal based sandpaper that just destroys itself or the sprockets.