Jump to content

Why does a new chain get tight links?


Stikkigloo
 Share

Recommended Posts

I fitted a new Connex single speed chain to my dirt jumper. After the first chain clean, I used a waxed based lube on it. I rode the bike a few times over 3 weeks and now the chain has developed multiple tight links. Tried the following:

- cleaned and degreased the chain

- applied a light oil based chain lube

- twisted the chain back and forth at the tight links to try loosen them

It seemed to work for while until after 2 rides then the stiff links seemed to return.

I don't know if it's a defect with the chain or am I doing something wrong?

 

image.png.0346a6e3a5fddbf8ea33316ca5469a52.png

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can find no specific maintenance instructions on the chain. Zink plated surfaces rubbing against each other can start galling. I suspect that it is what is happening, although I think this is an issue Connex would have taken into account. Maybe the zink plating is too thick on some links or maybe you removed the correct lubrication when you degreased the chain. 

Perhaps you should contact them?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Usually stiff links happen when the chain gets mangled during a bad shift or if it comes off and get damaged between the cassette and spokes, or between the crank and bb, but of course that cannot be the case here. So, my next guess will be rust. But why? It is not supposed to rust and you have lubed it. More questions than answers. Let me have my coffee first and try again.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Stikkigloo,

I had this happen to me once before with another big brand chain. Turned out that the factory lube had not been rinsed out properly before use. The stuff they use on some chains are marginally short of clear tar.

I take a mayo jar and fill it with 200ml paraffin into which I then soak the new chain for an hour or so. Once removed from the paraffin, I rinse with water and wash with a detergent or good quality concentrated cleaner. Hang out to dry and blast out any water left inside the rollers with an air compressor. If you have no access to a compressor, a vacuum cleaner will blow out moisture.

Once dry, fit on bike and lube as per normal. NEVER overlube your chain. Wax lubes can eventually cause links to become stiff when the chain is coated with excessive amounts of dry lube. I run my chains through a dry rag after allowing the lube to sit for 30 minutes. You need the lube between the links and rollers - not on the outer surfaces of the chain, where it will probably only collect dirt and add no lubrication value.

Less is more (MHO) 🤓

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wait..... the factory lube stays on the chain surely to soak into the pins.

One lubes the chain not just for the interface between cassette/chainring and chain but also to accommodate the side to side pressure and movement of the pins while you ride and shift through the gears.

Over cleaning your chain will cause dry spots and metal on metal doesn't move that well. It will also corrode faster which will cause the pins to stick.

Don't clean your chain in parafin or completely strip it with degreaser. You are shortening it's life span, exposing it to the elements and limiting performance.

A little bit of gunk in your chain is perfect.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, Jewbacca said:

Wait..... the factory lube stays on the chain surely to soak into the pins.

One lubes the chain not just for the interface between cassette/chainring and chain but also to accommodate the side to side pressure and movement of the pins while you ride and shift through the gears.

Over cleaning your chain will cause dry spots and metal on metal doesn't move that well. It will also corrode faster which will cause the pins to stick.

Don't clean your chain in parafin or completely strip it with degreaser. You are shortening it's life span, exposing it to the elements and limiting performance.

A little bit of gunk in your chain is perfect.

I get your point Jewbacca,

Perhaps I should have explained in great detail. I do not perform the paraffin ritual with every chainwash. Paraffin has an oil base and does no harm to the metal like thinners or petrol.

To give you an example of a test I did personally. After degreasing and washing as I normally would do, I allowed a relatively new chain to dry completely and dunked it into paraffin. I got the shock of my life when the paraffin turned a ominous dark grey within 15 minutes. The amount of crap the paraffin washed out of the rollers was short of crazy, AND this stuff had a metal substance because they stuck to the magnet that I sunk into the jar to test the nature of what was coming out of my "clean" chain. This gunk is silently chewing away your chain from the inside.

There's plenty of online clips to this effect, BUT the above was my personal experience.

I fully agree with your statement with regard the overcleaning of a chain, but the cost of components justifies some research into ways to make them last longer.

I tried the paraffin hack and it works. I get mega miles out of my chains.

If paraffin, as an occasional cleaning solvent, is not your scene, no sweat 😎

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

12 minutes ago, Mook said:

I get your point Jewbacca,

Perhaps I should have explained in great detail. I do not perform the paraffin ritual with every chainwash. Paraffin has an oil base and does no harm to the metal like thinners or petrol.

To give you an example of a test I did personally. After degreasing and washing as I normally would do, I allowed a relatively new chain to dry completely and dunked it into paraffin. I got the shock of my life when the paraffin turned a ominous dark grey within 15 minutes. The amount of crap the paraffin washed out of the rollers was short of crazy, AND this stuff had a metal substance because they stuck to the magnet that I sunk into the jar to test the nature of what was coming out of my "clean" chain. This gunk is silently chewing away your chain from the inside.

There's plenty of online clips to this effect, BUT the above was my personal experience.

I fully agree with your statement with regard the overcleaning of a chain, but the cost of components justifies some research into ways to make them last longer.

I tried the paraffin hack and it works. I get mega miles out of my chains.

If paraffin, as an occasional cleaning solvent, is not your scene, no sweat 😎

 

To be honest with you, I haven't washed any of my bikes for thousands of km. My mtb gets a soft brush and squirt around the pivots and all of them occasionally get the headset and spacers removed to clean up when the sweat goop starts growing out the seams in big white clumps. I do also just make sure the jockey wheels are clean and free spinning.

I get a lot of KM out of stuff.

As a disclaimer, I don't really ride in foul weather. If it's wet and rubbish or windy I run or surf. So my bikes are probably baby'd and seldom exposed to any sort of harsh elements besides my poor line choices and hitting pot holes

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/14/2021 at 4:42 PM, Stikkigloo said:

I fitted a new Connex single speed chain to my dirt jumper. After the first chain clean, I used a waxed based lube on it. I rode the bike a few times over 3 weeks and now the chain has developed multiple tight links. Tried the following:

- cleaned and degreased the chain

- applied a light oil based chain lube

- twisted the chain back and forth at the tight links to try loosen them

It seemed to work for while until after 2 rides then the stiff links seemed to return.

I don't know if it's a defect with the chain or am I doing something wrong?

 

image.png.0346a6e3a5fddbf8ea33316ca5469a52.png

 

 

What type of riding are you doing with this dirt jumper? Just Riding Along or some freestyle stuff..?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

7 hours ago, Mook said:

I get your point Jewbacca,

Perhaps I should have explained in great detail. I do not perform the paraffin ritual with every chainwash. Paraffin has an oil base and does no harm to the metal like thinners or petrol.

To give you an example of a test I did personally. After degreasing and washing as I normally would do, I allowed a relatively new chain to dry completely and dunked it into paraffin. I got the shock of my life when the paraffin turned a ominous dark grey within 15 minutes. The amount of crap the paraffin washed out of the rollers was short of crazy, AND this stuff had a metal substance because they stuck to the magnet that I sunk into the jar to test the nature of what was coming out of my "clean" chain. This gunk is silently chewing away your chain from the inside.

There's plenty of online clips to this effect, BUT the above was my personal experience.

I fully agree with your statement with regard the overcleaning of a chain, but the cost of components justifies some research into ways to make them last longer.

I tried the paraffin hack and it works. I get mega miles out of my chains.

If paraffin, as an occasional cleaning solvent, is not your scene, no sweat 😎

 

If you would take some cash to handle a few extra chains I am super keen to try this as my gf's dad has been telling me about it... He is based in Aus otherwise I would ask him to do it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have actually been thinking about this as a side business and doing a bit of research on it. For a few hundred rand you would send me your dirty chains and I would then clean them in my ultrasonic cleaner and then cook them in paraffin wax with a few extra additives. The application lasts about 600km in dry road conditions and can be topped up with a wax based lube for a couple hundred more before the chain needs to be treated again. Was also thinking of selling pre-treated, new chains. 
 

I estimate an XX1 chain can probably last about 10 000km if treated like this. It’s an estimate because mine is only on 5000km and still going strong.

Any takers?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 hours ago, michaelbiker said:

I have actually been thinking about this as a side business and doing a bit of research on it. For a few hundred rand you would send me your dirty chains and I would then clean them in my ultrasonic cleaner and then cook them in paraffin wax with a few extra additives. The application lasts about 600km in dry road conditions and can be topped up with a wax based lube for a couple hundred more before the chain needs to be treated again. Was also thinking of selling pre-treated, new chains. 
 

I estimate an XX1 chain can probably last about 10 000km if treated like this. It’s an estimate because mine is only on 5000km and still going strong.

Any takers?

XX1 chain will do 10k BUT will have eaten your cassette  and chainring when you do change

Edited by Ossie NL
Link to comment
Share on other sites

44 minutes ago, Ossie NL said:

XX1 chain will do 10k BUT will have eaten your cassette  and chainring when you do change

I rotate between 2 chains. So hopefully 20k out of the cassette and chainring. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

15k out of my current cassette. Just change the chain before 0.5% wear and that's around 6000km.

Chain rings will be replaced with the chain in future. I have enough info now to support this operational change

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 7/14/2021 at 4:42 PM, Stikkigloo said:

I fitted a new Connex single speed chain to my dirt jumper. After the first chain clean, I used a waxed based lube on it. I rode the bike a few times over 3 weeks and now the chain has developed multiple tight links. Tried the following:

- cleaned and degreased the chain

- applied a light oil based chain lube

- twisted the chain back and forth at the tight links to try loosen them

It seemed to work for while until after 2 rides then the stiff links seemed to return.

I don't know if it's a defect with the chain or am I doing something wrong?

 

image.png.0346a6e3a5fddbf8ea33316ca5469a52.png

Defective Chain, Replace with a New Chain.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

My Profile My Forum Content My Followed Content Forum Settings Ad Messages My Ads My Favourites My Saved Alerts My Pay Deals Settings Help Logout