How often to replace the chain? Why early replacement? - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 10:53 AM Thread Starter
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How often to replace the chain? Why early replacement?

Before I got the Strom, I was searching for a shaft driven bike. I didn't like the idea of maintaining a chain and thought they could randomly fail or that the chain and sprockets had to be changed yearly.

People assured me that this was not the case.


I just looked over the "Used bike Checkup" paperwork that came with my used 2012 V-Strom. The dealership looks over every bike when it comes in as a trade-in.

Oil change and a new OEM chain.

I find it hard to believe that the dealership would needlessly throw out $150 in a chain.
What would cause a chain to fail in less than one year and with only 6500 miles on it?

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post #2 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 11:12 AM
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I doubt if they'd throw out a $150.00 dollar chain either. Then again, they didn't pay $150.00 for the chain, but I bet YOU did, when you bought the bike....

All cynicism aside, It's probably possible to wear out a chain that quick if you never lubed it, and rode in dirty wet conditions, or it wasn't adjusted correctly, or it was a defective chain.
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post #3 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 11:23 AM
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You can tear up a chain in several hundred miles if you get it sandy/dusty/gritty/dirty and don't keep it lubed.

-Tom (DL650AL2) (KA1TOX) (E-I-E-I-O)

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post #4 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 11:30 AM
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20k is probably a good estimate for a chain's life, under average use and average maintenance.

I have gotten 40k out of a chain but I count that as the exception. I have also gotten 14k (less really, I just ran the chain way longer than I should have to get to 14k) but I also count that as the exception going the other way.

Random failure is almost unheard of. Replacing it every year is unnecessary, it's a factor of mileage and maintenance, not time.

If that was the OEM chain they replaced, my guess is it was badly neglected and probably just nasty - rusty, kinked links, etc. It would have made the bike a harder sell. No new sprockets though?
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post #5 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 11:41 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RCinNC View Post
I doubt if they'd throw out a $150.00 dollar chain either. Then again, they didn't pay $150.00 for the chain, but I bet YOU did, when you bought the bike...
2012 Adventure with 6500 on the clock.
$6500 before taxes and etc.
Another $400 on extended warranty.

I think I did all right.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MeefZah View Post
No new sprockets though?
Not on the parts list.

Oil, Filter, Some kinda gasket (I'll have to check the paperwork for the part number.) and chain.

That's it.

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post #6 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 11:47 AM
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The last two chains that I replaced were at 46,000+ miles and 41,000+ miles and in both cases had some life left on them. The 46,000+ one was a DID X-ring chain on my 2006 DL650 and the 41,000 + one was the OEM chain on my 2012 DL650. When I rallied the last I had a few chain incidents happen around me (unreleased to me) and I was leaving on a long ride so thought I wouldn't taunt Murphy. My 2012 is used to commute a lot but my commute generally includes riding on unpaved roads for part of the ride. I ride in all kinds of conditions including rain, salted roads, occasional snow and higher speeds.

I never clean my chain (as I don't think it does anything useful anyway) but lube my chain with every tank of fuel and after every ride in the rain. I use Wurth HHS 2000 (called 2K in some areas) and take about 10 seconds to lube with my bike sitting on the center stand.

..Tom

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post #7 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 11:59 AM
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I would say average chain life is in the 16k-18k range, diligent maintenance will get you more miles

IMHO the only reason to replace a chain prematurely is if your going on a long trip and don't want the hassle of doing it mid trip

keep an eye on sprockets, if you rely on engine braking, your sprockets (front especially) are likely to wear before the chain



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post #8 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 12:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randyo View Post
keep an eye on sprockets, if you rely on engine braking, your sprockets (front especially) are likely to wear before the chain
I am sceptical about this, because the force and duration are very negligible compared to acceleration or maintaining speed. Also this not apply on the same side of the tooths of the sprocket.
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post #9 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 01:08 PM
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Quote:
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I am sceptical about this, because the force and duration are very negligible compared to acceleration or maintaining speed. Also this not apply on the same side of the tooths of the sprocket.
if that is the case, you don't engine brake much

because it is on the opposite side of the teeth, it accelerates wear weakening the teeth even faster, there is a lot more force slowing a bike down than there is accelerating



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post #10 of 21 Old 10-14-2013, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by V-Tom View Post
I use Wurth HHS 2000 (called 2K in some areas) and take about 10 seconds to lube with my bike sitting on the center stand.
..Tom
Thanks for sharing! Do you get any fling off the chain with the Wurth product? Thinking of using it on my Tiger 1050 which has polished aluminum rims and shows fling badly. I was using the now-unavailable Dupont teflon/wax dry lube, and am now looking for something clean and good.
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