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Old 03-28-2012, 10:13 PM   #31
Dracothius
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Don't like chains. They're forced upon me on some bikes but, if I had my way, I would never own another chain. On this site I doubt you have many agree with you. I would state my reasons why I don't like chains but, someone would come in behind me and say how it's not that big of a deal and chains are all pros and no cons. I admit there are benefits to a chain but, there are also cons. Good luck "getting over" chains or finding a nice bike without one.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:19 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by dolomoto View Post
Maybe someone can school me here...O-ring chains have O-rings keeping the lube around the pivot points...hence their name: "O-ring" chains.

To lube an O-ring chain simply keeps corrosion of the exterior at bay. Exterior lube cannot make it to the interior of the chain on account of the "O-rings". Therefore, "lubing" will not make a chain last longer. For sure, cleaning the chain will keep road grit from wearing the O-rings but exterior lube is superfluous.

I cleaned my chains with Kerosene and a toothbrush every couple hundred miles and usually got 15,000-20,000 miles per chain.

Lubing an O-ring chain is a waste of time and money.

I think my record for a chain was something like 26,000 or 27,000, you lube the chain to help the chain sprocket interface. I basically just gunk it and wipe it off a little later, no cleaning ...ever. Its a chain, its supposed to be nasty. When I see the rollers get shiney again I re-gunk it and call it a day.

Been handling that the exact same way since I was in my teens and I usually kill the front sprocket before I need to do anything with the chain.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:27 PM   #33
JJGeo
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Originally Posted by DAKEZ View Post
I never clean them and I spray them with DuPont Teflon Spray Lube. I do this mainly to lube the chain to sprocket contact. (it is NOT like chain wax)
So how are they so different that you can't say one is like the other? They both claim to do the same thing, claim the same benefits, and they're both parafin wax products based on the MSDS and the product descriptions.
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Old 03-28-2012, 11:43 PM   #34
Jim K.
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21st century chains!

In 40 + years of riding, chain maintenance was always a minor hassle, but not a game changer. I enjoyed those years when I owned shafties, but my purchase decisions were never dictated by the final drive.My last chain, an '88 Hawk GT, was traded for a shaft drive Concours in 2000, & it was pleasant not to bother with the chain, but no big deal. Thus, I was an uninvolved bystander when the o-ring revolution took place. I'd read & heard about them, & figured that after the hype & optimism was subtracted, they were probably 10-15% better than the old school chains, but no biggie. Last year I bought a Gsx 650 F with, of course, a modern O- ring chain. OK, I'm back in the world of measuring slack, lubing links, adjusting tension, & wiping down the rear wheel. I measure my slack with a vernier caliper, (yes, I know it's overkill) and was surprised to find no slack in the first 1000 miles, then the second 1000. I use a teflon lube every 4 or 500 miles, but in my old experience, chains took a lot of adjustment in the first few thousand, then settled out with little stretch for the next 8 to 10,000, then began to eat up adjustment quickly. I have over 6,000 miles on this o-ring job & I have yet to measure even 1/16 th of an inch, of slack! It's right at spec. every time I measure. Not only that, it looks like new when I wipe it down with a rag after lube. Not just clean, I mean shiney, like stainless or nickel plate! Chain maintenance was only a minor chore back in the day, but these new chains seem to actually live up to the hype. They seem so far, to be stable, smooth, & easy to keep clean. Throw in the light weight, minimal power loss, & ease of modifying the ratios, & shaft drive stops looking like such an advantage. I think I'm a convert.
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Old 03-29-2012, 03:04 AM   #35
btl68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolomoto View Post
Maybe someone can school me here...O-ring chains have O-rings keeping the lube around the pivot points...hence their name: "O-ring" chains.

To lube an O-ring chain simply keeps corrosion of the exterior at bay. Exterior lube cannot make it to the interior of the chain on account of the "O-rings". Therefore, "lubing" will not make a chain last longer. For sure, cleaning the chain will keep road grit from wearing the O-rings but exterior lube is superfluous.

I cleaned my chains with Kerosene and a toothbrush every couple hundred miles and usually got 15,000-20,000 miles per chain.

Lubing an O-ring chain is a waste of time and money.

Yes, the o-rings of a chain seal factory grease in the pins, but it does not do anything for the rollers, which are NOT sealed. You spray lube to keep the rollers going, to keep the o-rings fresh and then, to keep rust down.

Read page 4 here: http://www.didchain.com/chainMaintenance.html

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btl68 screwed with this post 03-29-2012 at 03:17 AM
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Old 03-29-2012, 04:21 AM   #36
BossMaverick
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My first powered two wheeled device was a 50cc moped. I can't remember ever maintaining that chain except with an occasional blast of WD40. Of course that didn't have an o-ring chain. Looking back, I probably would've got an extra 3 mph if I would've cleaned the chain and lubed it with something decent. I was pretty young when I had the moped so maintenance didn't enter my mind.

My first real bike was a small cc chain drive cruiser without a center stand. I hated the chain drive. I hated how much of a pain it was to clean and lube the chain without a center stand. While owning this bike, I felt shaft>belt>chain.

My second bike was shaft drive. I liked how maintenance free it was. It was great until the bike started having other issues. I also deep down knew that having an inline four with shaft was being robbed of power in the drivetrain. While owning this bike, I felt belt=shaft>chain.

My goal with my third bike was to have EFI, ABS, a 6 speed transmission, and shaft or belt drive. I just wanted that I could ride with very little maintenance and repair time. I stumbled across the Bandit 1250 line and found a new leftover one for a great price and got it even though I wasn't planning on buying so soon. I got everything in the bike that I wanted except the drive system but I settled for it for how affordable the Bandit was.

Now that I have a chain drive bike with a center stand, I don't mind maintaining the chain. I just switched to a teflon type lube and it's even easier. Now I feel shaft=chain=belt if you combine all the pro's and con's of each system.

The only thing I won't own again is a chain drive bike without a center stand.
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Old 03-29-2012, 04:56 AM   #37
Grinnin
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I didn't mind chains when gravel roads were occasional and muck was rare. Now that I spend a higher percentage of time in grittier conditions, I dislike chains more. I built a chain oiler this winter to see if that helps.

My shaft-drive bike is mainly a road critter, but it sure would make sense for gritty conditions.

I can't tell which posters ride mainly on hard surfaces and which posters ride down in the goop although there are a lot of road-oriented bikes in the signatures.
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:04 AM   #38
eric2
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I really don't understand what the debate is about. Shaft drives require less maintenance but since the moving parts are hidden away, and it is more complex, you can get stranded where a quick check on a chain driven bike is sufficient.

or not



The bad things about chains have been mostly mentioned, except for the severed fingertips and broken engine cases.

If a final drive fails on a bmw, its a concern for nhtsa, if a chain fails on a chain driven bike its no big deal. I wonder why there's such disparity in expectations. A broke chain can be just as dangerous as a broke FD,

* Note, this post doesn't make me anti-chain. I'll get another one like an S1000rr or gsxr or something like that. Also I would like to point out that I have had to replace my driveshaft to the tune of $750 at 108k miles, but I could have gotten it rebuilt, and the rebuild with zerk fittings would likely last much longer. Never had more than weeping seals in the FD though after 300k plus miles
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Old 03-29-2012, 07:16 AM   #39
Worroll
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My FZ6 chain was still well within wear limits when I sold it at 26k, driven thru all types of weather but lubed regularly.

My KLR chain wore out at about 14k ridden in all types of weather, some dirt/mud, and very very poorly maintained.

My 86 Honda Shadow has shaft drive, and a small oil leak.

I personally like how easy it is to remove the rear tire on a shaft drive. My Triumph with it's chain/single sided swingarm should be even easier If I could pick, I'd probably pick shaft drive, but by no means a factor in a bike purchase.
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Old 03-29-2012, 09:10 AM   #40
High Country Herb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dolomoto View Post
Maybe someone can school me here...O-ring chains have O-rings keeping the lube around the pivot points...hence their name: "O-ring" chains.

To lube an O-ring chain simply keeps corrosion of the exterior at bay. Exterior lube cannot make it to the interior of the chain on account of the "O-rings". Therefore, "lubing" will not make a chain last longer. For sure, cleaning the chain will keep road grit from wearing the O-rings but exterior lube is superfluous.

I cleaned my chains with Kerosene and a toothbrush every couple hundred miles and usually got 15,000-20,000 miles per chain.

Lubing an O-ring chain is a waste of time and money.

I'm no expert, but I have been told the rollers on the O-ring chains are lubricated from the outside, and not sealed off by the o-rings. On those chains, you only need to spray the middle of the chain on the sprocket contact side.
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Old 03-29-2012, 09:47 AM   #41
El Guero
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I didn't mind chain drive on the bikes that had it. Lighter, but generally more maintenance intensive. Adjusting/lubrication/cleaning/replacement don't take up that much time, but you have to keep an eye on it (and keep a couple more tools on hand as well).

Both of my bikes now are shaft drive and I don't miss having to keep an eye on the chains.
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Old 03-29-2012, 09:48 AM   #42
Jim K.
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Besides obviously greasing the chain / sprocket interface, I believe many of the chain lube outfits claim that they keep the rubber of the o-ring (or x-ring) "live". That is, flexible & soft, thus maintaining the seal that keeps the inner bearing surfaces from losing grease. I'm not sure if that's true or not, but it sounds reasonable on the face of it. Silicon lube does seem to keep seals & other rubber parts pliable & springier.
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Old 03-29-2012, 10:00 AM   #43
Navin
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I have yet to meet a bike built that has been geared, (essentially by the federal government to pass drive by noise standards), to meets the needs I have. Even the belt driven bikes could use lower gearing but you can't just bolt it on. No thanks. I'll taker a cheap and easy to deal with X ring and steel sprockets that are my choice of ratio every 2 years every time.
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Old 03-29-2012, 10:30 AM   #44
beemerkid
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Im really impartial to chain vs. shaft but having had dirtbikes, BMW's, and a Ducati, I really, really like single sided swingarms. Taking off wheels on anything but a single arm, chain or not, is a pita but even my chain Ducati is just one bolt. It is a special bolt with a crazy torque value though
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Old 03-29-2012, 10:31 AM   #45
rotten
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I guess while we are asking for opinions we can launch this thread with the which oil is best
While we are at it:
which motor oil
Which tires
which type of bike
best place to ride

I believe there is an application for both I couldn't imagine having a shaft drive on my XR650L but there are times that I would have liked a shaft drive for street bikes it would have been nice on my GTS1000 but all in all I'll settle for a chain oilier.
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