newbie needs help re: chain adjustment - can't find my manual... - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 07:34 PM Thread Starter
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newbie needs help re: chain adjustment - can't find my manual...

This is my first bike with a chain (after 2 bikes with belt drives and one with shaft). I've gotten the cleaning and lubing thing down OK, at least I think so, but I think my chain needs tightening and I'm not sure how I'm supposed to do that. I read up on it in the manual when I first got the bike and wasn't too worried, but now I can't find my manual (d'oh!).

First, how much slack is there supposed to be and where do I measure it? I measured the distance the bottom of the chain moves up and down near the end of the kickstand, but while the bike's up on the center stand. For some reason I remember the manual saying there should be up to (less than) 55mm of play here, yet if I Google "DL650 chain slack" I find this page for the first gen Wee that says more than 1-1/2" of slack on the stand is too much. I've got 2-1/8" slack (about 54mm) so it seems like it's time to tighten it up - maybe way past time.

How do I tighten the chain on this bike? I seem to remember reading it was a matter of tightening a bolt somewhere but not sure where or how to do it.

It's getting dark soon so help is appreciated... I assume this isn't something that requires disassembling the swing arm or something to do?
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post #2 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 07:44 PM
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Loosen the rear axle nut and adjust the Allen head bolts on the ends of the swing arm. 5mm, I think. There are marks on each side of the swingarm for measuring. What you're doing is forcing the axle aft.

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

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Last edited by tmcgee; 07-29-2012 at 07:52 PM.
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post #3 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 07:48 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks. Am I measuring in the right spot, and what is the proper slack?


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post #4 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 07:52 PM
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Measuring spot is okay. I keep mine about 40-50mm.

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

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post #5 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 07:55 PM
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From the 2012 DL650 manual...

From the 2012 DL650 manual (page 7-33). Disclaimer: use at your own risk! Just trying to help here, don't sue me if I made a typo that would cause your bike to explode and/or your safety to be at risk!
  1. Place the motorcycle on the side stand
  2. Loosen the axle nut
  3. Turn the right and left adjuster bolts until the chain has 20 - 30mm (0.8 - 1.2 in) of slack halfway between the engine sprocket and rear sprocket
  4. At the same time that the chain is being adjusted, the rear sprocket must be kept in perfect alignment witht the from sprocket. To assist you in performing this procedure, there are reference marks on the swingarm and each chain adjuster with each other to be used as a reference from on side to the other
  5. Thighten the axle nut securely
  6. Recheck the chain slack after tightening and readjust if necessary

Rear axle nut tightening torque: 100 N-m (10.0 kgf-m, 72.5 lbf-ft)
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post #6 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 07:57 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks all! Btw when I get a new chain do I need to unwind what I wind now?


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post #7 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 08:02 PM
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Helpful Vid

I did mine today using the info from this video. I found the link in another thread about chain maintenance.
.: Video - How to Adjust a Motorcycle Chain | Canyon Chasers Motorcycle Sport Touring :.
I'm sure there are other ways and probably better ways, but the information from this video worked well for me.

Like you I found my chain was a little loose and wanted to do it right.

Ray
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post #8 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 08:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robardin View Post
Thanks all! Btw when I get a new chain do I need to unwind what I wind now?
Yes, new chain will be shorter.

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

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post #9 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 08:06 PM Thread Starter
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Wow I've been overslack for some time. Have I shortened my chain life and/or taken a hit on power or fuel efficiency?


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post #10 of 29 Old 07-29-2012, 08:11 PM
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BTW, EVERY time I take my bike through tech inspection for a track day, they say it looks tight and maybe it should be looser. You're full throttle and "in" the suspension a lot, so that squares off the swingarms on most bikes and effectively needs a longer chain.

In other words, just keep lubing and don't worry about it too much. In fact it's not clear that lubing modern chains makes them last longer, though it just seems wrong not to. I lube mine every other tank of fuel.

I adjust the chain when I feel a lot of backlash downshifting.

2005 DL650 (sold) | 2009 DL650A (sold) | 2008 Tiger 1050 ABS | 2012 WR250R | 2008 CRF100F
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