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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I changed my rear tire, put it back on and give it a spin. This is what I hear:


It is definitely coming from the front sprocket/chain. There is no noise at the back tire. I'm pretty sure it's aligned and it is lubed up. Neither adjusting the alignment nor loosening/tightening the chain make a difference. I did not clean the chain. Have I just never heard this before? I don't have a centerstand and I can't say I've ever freespun the wheel but it doesn't sound right to me. Whaddya think?
 

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Looks and sounds like dry chain.

Is this a new bike with original chain and sprockets?

Could it be a mismatched chain to sprocket pitch?

[vid works for me]
 

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Does it make the noise when spun the 'correct' way? I would guess that it doesn't. I think it is just sprocket/chain wear. Still, check to see if the chain is still in spec and all the teeth are on the sprocket.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Looks and sounds like dry chain.

Is this a new bike with original chain and sprockets?

Could it be a mismatched chain to sprocket pitch?

[vid works for me]
Does it make the noise when spun the 'correct' way? I would guess that it doesn't. I think it is just sprocket/chain wear. Still, check to see if the chain is still in spec and all the teeth are on the sprocket.
It's the original chain/sprockets on an '06 with about 10000 miles (I know, I know). It makes the same noise spinning either way. I wasn't paying attention during the video. I will check chain length. I didn't notice any missing teeth, but wasn't explicitly looking for one so I will check that as well. I might try giving it a good cleaning as well.

Thanks for the ideas, guys!
 

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Just sounds like a worn out chain to me. Take your fingers and pinch the little rollers (the little cylinders) on each link and wiggle them up and down. A new chain will have minimal play in the rollers. An old chain, the rollers will have play in them, hence the rattling noise.

Even a new chain can be ruined quickly if it is not lubed often and correctly. You need to keep the o-rings from going dry.

Lucas
 

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My oem chain sounded like that from the beginning.
My replacement chain also sounds like that.
I have a scottoiler on there, so I don't know if it's really chain wear.

Like I said, both chains did this from when they were new. I swapped the stock chain out at 14,000 km. I mounted a new DID 525 gold x chain on at that point. It was making that noise within 1,000kms. I run my chain on the loose side, but have not seen any sign of stretch yet; it's been on for a bit over 16,000kms.

Off topic:the Battlewings I mounted at the same time (16,000kms ago) are still going strong.

I'll be really curious to see what surfaces...
 

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When you are rolling the chain also take a peak on the bottom side of the swingarm and see how much stretch is present. If the chain moves up and down significantly then I would consider changing it out. Set you chain sag on the tightest section of the chain if you are going to consider riding further on said chain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Sounds like the consensus is the chain and/or sprockets are worn. Unfortunately I can't do anything until I get home tonight.

So my question is what would cause this at only 10K miles? I've seen plenty of people get 20K+. I have kept it lubed with chain wax, though I have a can of the dupont waiting. And have kept it adjusted (or so I thought). Thanks again for all the replies.
 

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Keeping the chain too tight will wear the sprocket and chain out faster. I think the general consensus on this board is to keep the chain a little looser than factory specs.

Lucas

PS, Your chain and sprocket don't have to be immediatly replaced. You'll probably have to adjust it more often, and it will make that annoying noise. However, it won't hurt anything to keep riding it like that for a little while until you get around to changing it.
 

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If you can pull the chain out from the sprocket much at all, say 1/4" or more, the chain is worn out......or, a sealed o-ring chain should be replaced when they exceed 255mm [10 1/4"] over 17 pins [center to center of pins].
 

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I've heard that sound on lots of my bikes, and it seems to go away when spinning it the other direction. I suspect alignment or chain/sprocket wear, but it probably isn't a real problem--its just normal on any bike with some miles on it. I wouldn't worry much. When you hear serious noise at the chain area, you'll know it, and then its time for new parts.
I don't always go with all new parts. I only replace the parts that are seriously worn out. I put a new chain on my old sprockets on my KLR, and it feels new again. The sprockets had a little wear alright, but they weren't bad enough to change everything. If I was a wealthy man I might buy all new sprockets and chain every time, but I'm a poor tightwad I guess. My bikes run good, that's all I can say.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Just sounds like a worn out chain to me. Take your fingers and pinch the little rollers (the little cylinders) on each link and wiggle them up and down. A new chain will have minimal play in the rollers. An old chain, the rollers will have play in them, hence the rattling noise.

Even a new chain can be ruined quickly if it is not lubed often and correctly. You need to keep the o-rings from going dry.

Lucas
So this is the only thing I notice. There is definitely some "wiggle" in the rollers. By minimal do you mean you shouldn't be able to tell? Everything else seemed fine. The sprockets don't look bad to me and the chain seemed snug to the sprocket, but that's a pretty subjective, non-scientific study. I did notice, however, that it is making the noise at the rear sprocket, it is just far quieter. I think I'll take it for a test ride tomorrow to see if it sounds different to me while riding. I can't imagine what I would have done to the chain while changing the wheel.
 

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So this is the only thing I notice. There is definitely some "wiggle" in the rollers. By minimal do you mean you shouldn't be able to tell? Everything else seemed fine. The sprockets don't look bad to me and the chain seemed snug to the sprocket, but that's a pretty subjective, non-scientific study. I did notice, however, that it is making the noise at the rear sprocket, it is just far quieter. I think I'll take it for a test ride tomorrow to see if it sounds different to me while riding. I can't imagine what I would have done to the chain while changing the wheel.
Below is a good example of a toasted chain. You can see that the o-rings have deteriorated from lack of lubricant, and the rollers are starting to get out of shape. Notice that the rollers are starting to get hourglass shaped. This is probably from using the wrong sized sprocket for the chain, or the sprocket was so worn down, it was chewing up the middle of the rollers.

On a new chain, the rollers should roll smoothly, and wiggle only a tiny amount. On a chain that is getting worn, the rollers will have more play, and will rattle. Imagine if you took the chain off, and shook it, are the rollers loose enough that they would rattle? If so, then they are probably worn out.

I've had many chains with worn rollers, and they almost always sound like your chain. You could try applying a really thick layer of chain wax, and that should quiet it down a bit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Below is a good example of a toasted chain. You can see that the o-rings have deteriorated from lack of lubricant, and the rollers are starting to get out of shape. Notice that the rollers are starting to get hourglass shaped. This is probably from using the wrong sized sprocket for the chain, or the sprocket was so worn down, it was chewing up the middle of the rollers.

On a new chain, the rollers should roll smoothly, and wiggle only a tiny amount. On a chain that is getting worn, the rollers will have more play, and will rattle. Imagine if you took the chain off, and shook it, are the rollers loose enough that they would rattle? If so, then they are probably worn out.

I've had many chains with worn rollers, and they almost always sound like your chain. You could try applying a really thick layer of chain wax, and that should quiet it down a bit.
hmmmm. I don't think they'd rattle. I had to hold the chain and push the rollers to get them to move just a tiny bit. I'm going to take it out tonight for a ride to see if it sounds different under power.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Test ride

I'm going to call the test ride inconclusive. I thought maybe it felt funny, but I also had a new tire on there. I could hear the sound at very low speeds, but anything above 10 no way (I wasn't wearing earplugs). I usually wear earplugs so it's very possible it has been making the sound for a long time. The O-rings looks fine. I don't think my sprockets are worn. I'm going to put some more miles on to see how it feels. I might end up replacing it for peace of mind but we'll see.
 

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Trust me, mind should be at peace. You're worrying about this too much. Even if it were worn out, you could still ride it for another 5000-10000 miles. It will just sound like crap and wear out the sprockets (which you'll probably change on your next chain swap). As long as it rolls smooth, you don't have any kinks or binding spots, just wax it every 500 and ride it.

Lucas
 
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