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Chain + sprocket replacement. Noob warning

Discussion in 'Technical and Troubleshooting Torque' at netrider.net.au started by philmydang, Sep 5, 2010.

  1. So I've been looking to replace the chain + sprockets of my Honda vt600, and am quite confused at the expanse of different bits available. All i want is to get my bike back on the road safely, so my questions are;

    What sprockets can I use? Online I don't see any sprockets available for my particular model - are they universal? all i know is i have a 16 tooth front and 42 rear

    My chain is 120 links but what does 525SM5, 525v8 mean??

    I've seen a set of chain + sprockets for my bike on fleabay from an overseas seller, but they supply a clip masterlink instead of a rivet? What's the difference between these? My manual says to never use a clip masterlink but never specifies why.

    I've asked at a few (not to be named) motorcycle accessory stores and received no help at all and thus am resorting to you guys - the brains trust. Any help would be appreciated :)

  2. I would like to learn the answers to this as well
  3. You will have to get sprockets that fit your bike. They probably won't be specific to just your bike but fit other makes/models as well.

    The 525 is the width of the chain, so sprockets have to be used for this width chain.
    You can use sprockets with different teeth numbers from what you have stated, if you want to change the gearing for more acceleration or lower revs.

    The other numbers after the 525 are the manufacturers numbers identifying the chain.
    Look on their web sites.

    A rivited master link is a safer option than a clip which can come off.
    Clips are generally only used for smaller capacity bikes.

    Are you thinking of fitting this yourself?
    EK make a rivited masterlink (about $25)that does not require a tool ($100 - $300)to fit.
    Get a quote from someone that fits and supplies chain.
    Usually bike tyre places will do chains. Ask them how much they will charge to just fit a chain and sprockets if you supply them. I think the going rate is $75-$100 if they are supplying every thing. They may want to charge more if you are supplying the parts.
    Donn't skimp on the chain and sprockets.
  4. 525 = 5.25 mm width ?
  5. I know the basics of chain and sprockets.
    no expert
    but i know if you plan on doing it yourself
    plan what your going to do

    I had the chain and sprockets and i just went for it.
    big stuff up
    I didnt have the right sockets after pulling case covers off and taking things apart
    then had to walk around looking for a place that sold the huge socket(36mm)
    then had another go after a couple of days cut the chain with the 'rk chain cutter'
    I counted the links incorrectly and cut too many off
    Anyway... I ended up with 3 master links on my chain. and they were from different brands lol.
    I learned from it though as I did a friends one without a problem
  6. The 525 is not the width.
    A 520 chain is 6.55 mm
    525 7.94 mm
    530 9.53 mm
    Not sure what the 520, 525, 530 reffers to.
    You can replace a 530 chain with a 520 to loose weight and get better acceleration.
    Obviously you need to get the matching sprockets.
    As you can see theres quite a bit of difference in width between the 520 and the 530
    If you are going down that path a matching rear alluminium sprocket would be the go.
  7. The 4 .. 5 .. & 6 isnt really to do with the width of the chain per say. It is the diameter or the inner roller, its pitch and tensile strenth.
    Typically a 4 is usually called a 420. 5 can be 520 or 525, 530 depending on the pitch. And 6 is like a 630. So yes it is about size, but that size is for the power it has to handle.
    Then you add the O or W and so forth and that is the type of seal the chain uses.
    You wouldn't want to use a road bike chain on a dirt bike as all the crap would go strait into it and it would last a week.
    I use master clip chains on my dirt bikes up to say a 650 adventure. Simply because I will take them off quite often and clean and soak the buggers.
    I don't take the ones off my road bikes so I use a sealed clip. Or burred clip.
    Good maintanence of your chain and sprockets adds up to quite a few beers on the bar each year. Also your rear tire life if you not running it true.
    It's not really rocket science and mate if your bike shop cant explain this then I would be shopping elsewhere. Seriously.
  8. All the chains I have bought have been supplied with clip-links, they are safe to use if
    you install them correctly, I've got them on a FZR100 and a FZR600, never had a problem.

    Install clip link with the closed end to the direction of travel, place over one pin and slide toward the other one. Get a magnifying glass and check that the clip is in the grooves properly. I use a drop of paint on them just to make sure they don't move. If you take the chain off, use a new clip link. Chains can be shortened easily with an angle-grinder, just grind the pins flush to the plate and lever the plate. Undo the sprocket nuts before you do anything else, wedge the back brake on and it's easy.
  9. So why does my manual say to never use clip links in big bold letters? Is it for the same reason that if you exceed the posted speed limit your bike will explode?
  10. I suspect they put this in to cover themselves.
    If you donn't install the clip correctly it can come off.
    I see that some poeple use the clip linlk on larger bikes.
    I'd rather use the rivit link. The plate is pressed on and its a verry tight fit,
    the rivet end is then flared as a backup.

  11. The first number is the pitch, the spacing between pins.
    4 = 4/8" = 1/2" pitch
    5 = 5/8" pitch
    6 = 6/8" = 3/4" pitch
    The 2nd number is the spacing between the plates, the chain width
    20 = 2/8" = 1/4"
    25 = 5/16" ( 2.5/8 = 5/16")
    30 = 3/8"

    The reason it says dont use a master clip is because an incorrectly installed clip is dangerous. So is an incorrectly installed rivet. There is the internet forum based story that the master clip will move perpendicular to centrivical force and magically fall off, killing you, your wife and several small kittens. They put that in the manual because people are wary of master clips.. and may not buy their offical product (on which they make a tidy profit) if they believe that it is dangerous.
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  13. Run a set of lighter sprockets and go down a size on your chain if you want some extra seat of the pants horsepower. It lowers the rotating mass of your drive system, and lets the whole lot spin up easier. The downside is if you are doing it on something like a busa, you shred the whole lot pretty fast.
  14. when you replace your rear sprocket allways use new bolts and washers on your new sprocket,, ,,,if you have a lock washer on the frount sprocket replace that allso...
  15. That can get costly. Loctite 243
  16. Yes, when you pay for a rivet master link, make sure they dont just put a clip link on like they did for me :p. Realised too late of course.
    Clips certainly can come off... pictured (now linked instead) is my 9000km old chain :p... had lost the clip sometime in the previous ~200km. Got a new link in there now ;).

    Useful thread guys, thanks. I wasnt sure what it all stood for either :D.

    Not sure id recommend aluminium sprockets to anyone though. Will stick with steel myself ;).

    (is huge and filled the screen :p.)