20. How to Loosen a Stiff Chain Link
Stiff chain links cause noise, shifting problems, and even injury. Watch how to fix it by hand!
A stiff chain link can cause problems with your shifting, and can even cause injury if it slips while you’re pedaling. Here’s how to easily diagnose and fix the problem.
You’ll know you have a stiff link if your chain skips every 3 or 4 rotations. If you have several stiff links you’ll feel it skip even more often. To find the link, shift down to your smallest rear sprocket and then run the chain backwards through the derailleur by rotating your crank. Keep a close eye on your chain as it rolls over the lower derailleur pulley. When the stiff link passes through you’ll see it jump over the pulley. This means the inner and outer plates of one of your chain links are squished together too tight at the pin.
To fix this by hand, simply work the plates loose by twisting the chain up and down the same way it was meant to. Then point the stiff link upward and firmly grab the closest connecting points on either side. Now twist the chain side to side, the way it was not supposed to bend. If all goes well, your stiff link should now be loosened and you can continue riding.
If this method doesn’t work, and the link is still stiff, you’ll have to use a chain tool to fix it. Place the stiff link into the chain tool, on the slots closest to the turning handle. Now thread the chain tool’s pin gently against the chain pin about 1/8th of a turn, or just enough to slightly loosen the chain plates. That should loosen it enough.
If you still have problems, the chain may actually be bent and need replacing.
First post here. I've tried searching, but I don't know what you call this.
I have a vintage Schwinn Passage that I picked up a few months ago. At first it worked well, but recently it's been giving me trouble.
When I shift, the chain pops into the higher (larger) gear, but then sits on top of the chain ring. What ends up happening is that the chainring will keep turning, and eventually the chain will pop into place or pop right off.
<... Read more >>
Over the past few years, I have noticed that basically all the bikes I have owned/sold/ridden have all had chains that do not have a quick release. So, when I need to replace them, I have to get a punch and a hammer to take the chain off. Does anyone know the meaning of this? It has been bugging me for quite some time now because it can take quite a while to punch out one of the pins. Plus, then sometimes the chain is ruined.
-mtnbikr... Read more >>
Have an old Sears tote cycle that I'm fixing up. Looks like it was a two or three speed but has no cable or shifter on it. Coaster brake arm has Torpedo Dreigang on it. I'm wanting to get it back to working again.Know nothing about this. I have built motorcycles so I know my way around two wheels. Trying to find out how to hook up a new cable and lever to the rear hub.... Read more >>
Hi, new to the forum, need some tech advice:
1) is it normal for the teeth on the same chainring to have different profiles - some are pointed and others shorter and squarer. This is a new Triple LASCO I am looking at in a shop.
2) How do I know if any new chainset I buy, will match my existing spindle? The chainset I have currently fitted is an SR SUNTOUR ZR 120, does that mean the square hole is 12mm?
Zak... Read more >>
Brand Brand new to the Forum!
I have a Giant Iguana 640 Bike that has been under the house for a couple of years. Used to ride it quite a bit then life kicked in. Just got re-enthused about riding and decided to break out my bike. I cleaned it up and got the cobwebs off.
I am having a problem and have no idea where to start to diagnose it. Everything looks good but if you pedal, the pedals turn but the the rear sprocket does not engage. I can pedal and pedal but I go nowhere. There is no grinding or unusual sounds.
I would appreciate any advise or guidanc... Read more >>
I am currently running a thread on derailleurs regarding 7 speed blocks. However, another bump has appeared in my road - scarcity of 7 speed chains.
I really wanted Schramm, but can't find one, but Competitviecyclist have just told me that the Shimano 9 speed chain is compatible with 7 speed. I am sceptical so I decided to canvas you guys. Can anyone confirm this? Thanks... Read more >>
My current set up is a standard 2011 Merida Ride 91:
Frame Ride Speed-Single
Fork Road CF-S
Front Derailleur Shimano Sora 34.9 Double
Rear Derailleur Shimano Sora SS
Shifters Shimano Sora
Brake Levers attached
Brakes F/R Shimano Sora
Crankset Shimano Sora 50-34
BB Set attached
Chain Shimano CN-HG53
Hubs F/R Shimano 2200
Rims Alex Race24-White-NC
Freewheel Shimano CS-HG50-9 11-25
Spokes Black stainless
Tyres Maxxis Detonator 25 60
H-Bar... Read more >>
Please could anyone advise on some issues that I currently have with my MTB drive chain.
I recently replaced my complete drive chain and all was looking good with the fine tuning until I used my MTB today and the problems started.
The issues that seem to be occurring is that the cassette changes with no problems but some of the gears do not seem to operate correctly.
IE they keep popping back off the cassette gears before re-latching and again pop back off the gears. During this the chain seems to be riding on the edge of the gears.
I have an 8-speed mtb (Saracen Raw3) with a cassette sprocket. When I pedal forwards the sprocket free-wheels which means the bike doesn't go anywhere. If I get hold of the sprockets I can turn it both anti-clockwise and clockwise
I changed the cassette about 3 months ago but the bearings haven't been changed or greased since I bought it (2007) (maybe the problem?)
I can ride the bike for a short time before it happens - after a few moments the sprocket will grip again and then stop again and so on...
I've tried bringing the wheel insi... Read more >>
Is there a possibility for a 4th and even larger chainring. in additon to a normal 3 ring setup... Read more >>
Have a pristine '85 Fuji Allegro w/ 12spd gears. Can this bike be converted
to a 18spd by changing the front cog from 2 to 3 gears? Or would the conversion cost more than the bike was worth?
Front cogs=42,52 w/ 170mm chain
Rear spindle= 14,16,19,22,26,30
Thought adding a 32 cog to the front would help with climbs.... Read more >>
Bought a '13 Giant Yukon GT and have in my head that a 10-speed cassette won't fit on this puppy. Read it somewhere but can't remember where. Thinking it said only up to 9-speed will fit this hub. Can anybody enlighten me before I order a new cassette, rear derailer and shifter.... Read more >>
I repair old bikes and donate them to a food pantry. I run into small openings in the cassettes smaller than 20cm. Are there lockring tools that are for sale that I can purchase to remove these older cassettes.
Pete Labita... Read more >>
I have a Mongoose XR-75 that is in very nice shape...except for the FRONT 3-sprocket set (chainwheels?). Some teeth are worn out on the two largest sprockets. Chain looks good. I have replacements (from another bike-same model), and I am ready to swap them out.
While I am a pretty good (auto) mechanic, I haven't done this particular job before, and I'm not exactly sure how to go about it. It appears that the sprockets are held on with hex screws. Right? Looks like a fairly easy process...but is it? Is there a tutorial here at the site that covers this bike?
Thanks for... Read more >>
Is there a crankset out there that will allow a less than 32 tooth 2nd chainring to be fitted. Any ideas? Thanks. Giant Yukon FX. Has a SR Suntour XCT V2 on it now.... Read more >>