Adjusting Chain Tension - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 53 Old 07-15-2018, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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Adjusting Chain Tension

So all the online how-to-videos show the chain tension adjusted with the rear wheel in the air, which makes sense, to help find the tight spot on the chain, easier to site the alignment once adjusted and clean while your at it. While the manuals state needs to be on the side stand.

So what should the slack be with the rear wheel up, how much do you add to the manuals .8 - 1.2 inches while on the side stand?
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post #2 of 53 Old 07-15-2018, 01:50 PM
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Real easy--put the rear in the air for cleaning and lubing, check and adjust while on the side stand as per the manual and be done.
My bikes are set to 20-30mm.
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post #3 of 53 Old 07-15-2018, 02:05 PM
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Real easy--put the rear in the air for cleaning and lubing, check and adjust while on the side stand as per the manual and be done.
This is how I do it. If you have tight spots you can either roll a few times and check tension at multiple places, or find the tightest spot on the center stand and then adjust at that spot on the side stand.

But to answer your question, you could try measuring a given spot on the side stand and then measure that same spot again on the center stand to get the offset for your bike. An average of multiple sample points would be best.

I think I recall reading some threads with general recommendations but I can't remember for sure what it was, seems like it was about 1/2" or less. Don't quote me on that cuz it could be completely wrong. Personally, I would measure the offset for myself, given what is at stake.

A little loose is better than a little tight. Mine is currently running at the loose end of the spec and I've been procrastinating the adjustment...
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post #4 of 53 Old 07-15-2018, 02:07 PM
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Originally Posted by LL Fauntleroy View Post
So all the online how-to-videos show the chain tension adjusted with the rear wheel in the air, which makes sense, to help find the tight spot on the chain, easier to site the alignment once adjusted and clean while your at it. While the manuals state needs to be on the side stand.

So what should the slack be with the rear wheel up, how much do you add to the manuals .8 - 1.2 inches while on the side stand?
Some bikes are specified with the wheel off the ground. Suzuki doesn't supply the V-Strom with a center stand so they specified it on the side stand.

Measurement and specificstion needs to match the procedure.
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post #5 of 53 Old 07-15-2018, 02:49 PM
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And dont put your blind faith in factory swingarm marks either.
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post #6 of 53 Old 07-17-2018, 03:34 AM
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What I have found works well for me, when at home, is a swing-arm stand. Makes cleaning and lube easier knowing that the bike is safely supported. Once the slack is correctly set via the swing-arm stand, you now can determine the amount of slack required for the side and center stand adjustments more accurately. Note that you can even make use of mike crates / car trestles / suspend from rafters / etc, as a swing-arm stand but I can't say that it will be as secure as a proper swing-arm stand.
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post #7 of 53 Old 07-17-2018, 03:39 AM
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Originally Posted by MAZ4ME View Post
And dont put your blind faith in factory swingarm marks either.
I follow an online video that recommends using calipers rather than the marks. I put the bike on the center stand, find the spot on the chain with the most play, set it to 1", use calipers to make sure the distance is the same on both sides, torque the nuts and finally recheck the spacing. I ignore the marks.

Last edited by jmf552; 07-17-2018 at 03:42 AM.
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post #8 of 53 Old 07-17-2018, 04:43 AM
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I follow an online video that recommends using calipers rather than the marks. I put the bike on the center stand, find the spot on the chain with the most play, set it to 1", use calipers to make sure the distance is the same on both sides, torque the nuts and finally recheck the spacing. I ignore the marks.
What are you measuring relative to? From what I have seen, most people's use of calipers (whether vernier or otherwise) is pretty poor. I would think that the alignment marks are less out than what you would get from poor caliper use. But I haven't verified for myself as to how accurate the marks are. At least you shouldn't have the issue I had with my first ever chain adjustment on an old bike, where torquing up the wheel would pull the wheel out of alignment.
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post #9 of 53 Old 07-17-2018, 07:50 AM
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Inch and a half slack on center stand, the eleventh commandment.
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post #10 of 53 Old 07-17-2018, 09:28 AM
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Measuring with the caliper is difficult, at least for the V2, since there is no good way to measure the actual axle position, just the adjustment spacers, and they have play on the axle.

I did verify that the markings are accurate, when measured from the machined end of the swingarm. But that assumed that the machined ends are accurate and perpendicular to the chain. Don't know if they really are.
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