Question about shimano chains and connection pins! Help me please!
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  1. #1
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    Question about shimano chains and connection pins! Help me please!

    Hi everybody!

    I have always used shimano chain in my drivetrain, but I had some questions about the chain instalation regarding the use of the special connection pin and the plates of the chain...

    I know that every time you cut the chain you have to put it together with the special pin, but I was installing a new chain and put two pins trought the same hole. I mean, the first pin with it`s guide went perfect to connect the chain but the pin breaks in a weird form I can`t describe, well I said, "no problem, I have other pin here", with the new pin everything went in perfect. My only concern is, if the plates of that link of the chain get bigger (because the first pin went trough it and the second fits fine, making the special pin not a "tight" fit)??

    Or you can use the same link every time you want just, being carefully not to reuse the special connection pin???

    thanks a lot, and sorry for my english

  2. #2
    wim
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    When you cut the chain by pushing the pin out, you slightly enlarged the hole in the chain plate because the factory pin is "peened" - meaning it's just a bit larger at the ends than in the middle.

    To take care of that larger hole, the special replacement pin with the guide is a bit larger in diameter than the factory pin. When you pushed that special replacement pin out again because it "broke in a weird form," you enlarged the hole some more. Because the second replacement pin is excactly the same size than the first replacement pin, the fit after you pushed your second replacement pin through is not as tight as it should be.

    If you have a third replacement pin and can shorten the chain, take the bad connection link out (if you can find it again) and reconnect.

    Never use the same chain plate hole more than once. It can only stand two "punches": one when the chain is assembled at the factory, and one with the special replacement pin.

    Many people use quick-disconnect links that allow you to break and reconnect a chain without tools or special pins. I know nothing about those, so someone else would have to advise you on these.

    What was that "weird break?" If the guide pin leaves a little burr or edge after you break it off, you can file or grind it it off.

  3. #3

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    That's why I started using SRAM

    Somebody can probably answer you, but not me: When Shimano started requiring those stupid pins, and my LBS wanted two bucks each for them, I switched to SRAM. No problems in at least 10,000 miles on three bikes over four or five years. You can install and remove by hand (I've heard people say it's tricky, but I may have lucked out--I can pop mine on and off in a few seconds with no trouble.
    I've never tried it, but I posted a question here a year or so ago about using the SRAM quick-connect link on Shimano chains, and several people said they've done it.

  4. #4
    Darling of The Lounge
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    I use a Wippermann Connex link on my Shimano 9 Speed Dura Ace and have not had any problems. It sure takes the hassle out chain removal and cleaning.

  5. #5
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    Just what I though...

    THANKS a lot for that long reply.

    But I have one last question.

    Ok I`ll remove the link where the connection was made, but it will leave the chain a little bit shorter than before, can I use a couple of links and reconnect the new links?. I mean, the chain will have now two connection pins in it. I don`t know if this will make it weaker, so for that reason I`m asking if it`s better to leave it shorter or I can add 3 links without any problem or doubt of a weak chain?.

    thanks a lot!

    bye

    Pd. BTW I have enough connection pins

  6. #6
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    I know people who have used the Sram link on Shimano chains.

    I personally detest Shimano chains. The only chains I've ever broken were Shimano. I use a PC 991 Sram on my Campy 8 speed and a KMC DX-10s on my Campy 10.

  7. #7
    "Cypress Gardens" Fl.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cory
    You can install and remove by hand (I've heard people say it's tricky, but I may have lucked out--I can pop mine on and off in a few seconds with no trouble.
    I've never tried it, but I posted a question here a year or so ago about using the SRAM quick-connect link on Shimano chains, and several people said they've done it.
    I think until after the quick-connect link wears in a little it will be a little stiff. At least thats how it was with mine. After a few hundred miles the Sram (silver pin) link started getting easier to take on and off, and had no issues with it on my DA chain. In fact, I'm still using it even with my Campy setup.
    ~ just "Don" (not a bike scientist)

  8. #8
    Does it matter?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fran
    THANKS a lot for that long reply.

    But I have one last question.

    Ok I`ll remove the link where the connection was made, but it will leave the chain a little bit shorter than before, can I use a couple of links and reconnect the new links?. I mean, the chain will have now two connection pins in it. I don`t know if this will make it weaker, so for that reason I`m asking if it`s better to leave it shorter or I can add 3 links without any problem or doubt of a weak chain?.

    thanks a lot!

    bye

    Pd. BTW I have enough connection pins
    You can use some new links. I have a bunch of new links (extra) from when I size up my chain. I keep them just in case. Don't you have a leftover piece of chain? or did you use the entire chain? I also have a bunch of extra pins (just like you :-)). Anyway break the chain at two factory pins, one at either side of the one you pushed out twice. Then fit in the replacement links and use 2 "special pins" to connect it to the rest of the chain. You should be fine that way. Once I miss- sized a chain, and I used two "special pins" on the same chain (but NOT on the same hole), and I didn't have any issues with that particular chain..

    yeah, it takes a little care to get the special pin in there and break off the tab piece. I took a file to a little burr on the tab once like Wim mentioned above. But other than that, I have no worries about them since I don't take my chain off until I replace them.

  9. #9
    wim
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    Ok I`ll remove the link where the connection was made, but it will leave the chain a little bit shorter than before, can I use a couple of links and reconnect the new links?. I mean, the chain will have now two connection pins in it. I don`t know if this will make it weaker, so for that reason I`m asking if it`s better to leave it shorter or I can add 3 links without any problem or doubt of a weak chain?.
    Your drivetrain needs to work in the big front chainring-biggest rear cog combination. If that combination stretches the rear derailleur to the limit, the chain is too short. It will be much better to have a chain with two or three replacement pins in it than a chain that's too short.

    Any link with replacement pin in it will be a little weaker than a link that's never been broken, and there's nothing you can do about that. I would use a chain with two or three replacement pins in it, but no more.

    From the responses here, I'm going to look into SRAM chains and Connex links myself.
    Last edited by wim; 06-08-2006 at 07:33 PM.

  10. #10

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    In my experience, the 10-speed Shimano chains that I've seen break have, almost without exception, been due to either incorrectly installing the connecting pin or splicing pieces together using the normal pins. Recently, I saw a Madone with a poorly installed connecting pin. The chain had broken at the pin (ripped the outer plate off the end of the pin), rocketed through the derailleur and pulled it into the wheel. Frame ended up needing to be reworked at the factory.

    Personally, I use a DA 10-speed chain with the Wipperman ConneX links and have had excellent results. If you do want to use the connecting pins, make sure that it is the leading pin when it's under load and that the broken edge faces away from the chain. I've also seen several of those pins, when broken off, actually tear a little bit away from the pin itself. I think they are a really poor design, but Shimano (and Campagnolo for that matter) hasn't decided to run with the quick-link yet.

  11. #11
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    Hey...what about doing this!!??

    I was searching in my old stuff and I found a powerlink connector .

    Well I had seen that a lot of people from this board and others have used sram connectors in shimano chains (9 speed chains HG with GOLD power links), well I wanted to know just one thing. The outher plates of the chain are supposed to seized up when you remove the special (factory) connection pin, but what a bout the holes of the roller (inner plate)? I asked this because I can cut my chain at the link point (where I joined for the first time) and put the power link connector there, remember that the powerlink goes connected to the inner holes at both sides so...I suppose there will be no problem...??

    Am I wrong? The holes of the rollers get seized up, too?

    thanks a lot!


    bye

  12. #12
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    no problem....

    [QUOTE=Fran]I was searching in my old stuff and I found a powerlink connector .

    That's the real solution. If you goof up the hole in an outer plate, remove the pair of outer plates and replace with a connex link. The pin is loose fit with the inner plates. The inner plates are formed to create a bushing for the pin to ride in. Of course you should never have more than one connex link on a chain.

  13. #13
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    I have just put the link...

    but I feel it not as a tight fit, more as a loose fit. I know that it has to be a little to loose to let the roller move freely but when I move the power link sides to sides it shows more play than the normal rollers. In fact I measured the width of both chain rollers (A pc-59 and the xtr 9 speed chain) and both are of the same widht.

    Is this normal? or am I missing something?

    I also bought a "Missing link" from KMC but it`s not reusable, so...

    any more tought are appreciated.

    thanks!

    PD: Yes, the power link I`m using is gold color for 9 speed chains (it has stamped 9 spd on one of the plate surfaces) and it was of a PC-59 chain, BTW it`s completly NEW.

    Thanks again!

  14. #14
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    well...

    The SRAM link is made to fit a SRAM chain, not shimano. It's not the roller width that matters, it's the width measured across the inner plates. I suspect shimano's chain is a bit narrower. Us a micrometer with the anvil right over the hole where the pin goes through (calipers will work also). If the shimano chain is the same or no more than a few thousandth's narrower, you should be OK.

    A quick link will always be looser than an ordinary link. I can't personally say that this combo works but others claim it's OK.

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