To The Point - Chain Guides

Mar 12, 2013
by Mike Levy  
Colorado's MRP (short for Mountain Racing Products) has a longer history in the sport than many are aware of, having manufactured chain guides for over seventeen years. Those who have been around long enough may remember their original System 1 guide that featured two plates bolted to the crank spider and twin rollers on a boomerang, or their System 2 that used a stationary inner plate that could be adjusted left to right via a set-screw design. Those two guides were game-changers at a time when many riders struggled with strange setups that were more of an afterthought than anything, not to forget the funky proprietary guides that often did more harm than good. MRP's lineup has evolved greatly since then, and it only made sense to talk to MRP's Noah Sears about how and why things have changed in the world of chain guides over the years.

What does ISCG stand for and why are there two ISCG standards (ISCG and ISCG 05)?

Before there were any “standards” you basically had three options for mounting a guide to your bike - and
all of them usually involved the use of power tools and a lot of swearing! You could use a back plate
that clamped around your bottom bracket shell using a pinch design or a series of set screws, you
could pinch a back plate between your drive-side bottom bracket cup and shell face, or you had a
proprietary system unique to your frame. None of these solutions produced a system that was durable,
consistent, and could be easily installed.

In 1999, MRP got together with Mr. Dirt and created the International Standard Chain Guide mount
(ISCG). ISCG consists of three threaded holes arranged around the drive-side bottom bracket shell
face. The ISCG standard eliminated the durability and setup problems associated with previous mounting
systems, and allowed manufacturers to easily accommodate the needs of their consumers. All of our guides
were ISCG compatible as of December 2000.

Around five years later, there was a push by a few in the industry for a new, larger bottom bracket standard.
The larger bottom bracket would not work with the ISCG standard (due to the bolt circle diameter not being
large enough
), so a new mounting “standard” was born - ISCG-05. It also consists of three mounting
holes, but the BCD of the three holes is larger. Although the larger bottom bracket standard never materialized
in the market, several manufacturers had adopted the ISCG-05 standard, so it survived. Around this time
people began calling the original standard ISCG-old or ISCG-03, both of which don’t make sense since the original
standard is still used by many bike manufacturers today (not old) and it was developed in 1999-2000
(not 2003). At MRP, we refer to the two standards as they were developed: ISCG and ISCG-05.

ISCG and ISCG-05

Today we make guides for both standards and also make most of our guides in a bottom bracket mount format if your bike does not have ISCG or ISCG-05 tabs. If your bike does not have ISCG/ISCG-05 tabs, it is best to use the BB mount system to maintain the proper chain line, rather than using an adapter which may push out the chainline. Once you can identify the difference between the two standards, it is pretty simple to get the right guide for the mounts on your frame.

What was wrong with the old fashioned mounting where the guide’s backplate was clamped under the drive side bottom bracket shell?

That system was pretty limited in terms if alignment and durability. Working with ISCG tabs and the
assortment of spacers that we provide with current guides makes alignment pretty simple - you
can accurately adjust the inboard/outboard position of the guide in very fine increments. As for
durability, the three threaded tabs make for a solid mount to the frame - one that isn’t going to
move every time it gets bumped or bashed by a rock or log.

Product Pick photos
MRP's G2 SL Carbon bolted to a Trek Session 9.9's ISCG-05 chain guide tabs.

There seems to be so many different types of guides to pick from - dual roller, sliders only, taco or no taco ect - how does a rider know which one to choose?

The mountain bike market today is pretty segmented. Whereas ten years ago you were either riding
a cross-country bike or a gravity rig, today you’ve got dozens of genres and subgenres of bikes
available that are specifically tailored to a particular style of riding or terrain. Today's guides are
a reflection of that, with one for every application. Selecting the right model may seem like a
daunting task, but it’s really no different than shopping for any other bike part. On our website we
have a helpful “Guide Chooser” that asks a series of questions and eventually leads the user to
the suitable guide. To narrow down your choices you only need to know three key things:
1) How many chainrings are you hoping to use (1 or 2)?
2) Does your bike have ISCG or ISCG-05 tabs? If not, does your bike have a traditional threaded
bottom bracket shell or does it use press-in bottom bracket bearings?
3) What style of bike and what kinds of terrain will you be riding?

There are other factors that influence which guide is best matched to a rider. For instance, new
derailleur technologies like Shimano’s Shadow+ and SRAM’s Type 2 are allowing single-ring trail
riders that previously required full-featured guides (those with both top and bottom retention
features as well as chainring protection
) like the S4 and G3 to reliably use lighter, simpler
guides like the 1x and our new AMg. In cases like that it’s ultimately up to the consumer to decide
how much chain-retention they’re comfortable with.

The minimalistic 1x guide offers upper chain management without a lower roller or chain ring protection - not suitable for a DH bike but great on some trail bikes depending on the terrain.

Anyone who has had to set up and live with a guide from years past knows that they have come a long ways. What would you say has been the most important advancement?

There have been so many great advancements to mountain bike drive trains that have eased chain
guide installation that it’s hard to pick just one! The biggie for me, though, is that bike manufacturers
are finally putting ISCG tabs on so many models. Mounting a guide using the bottom bracket is still
a viable option (and made much easier by external bearing bottom brackets), but having tabs
on a frame and being able to space the guide inboard and outboard as needed really makes finding
that perfect guide setup simple and painless.

For a consumer, the biggest hurtle to setting up a guide is in cases where their frames lack ISCG tabs
and a feature a press-in bottom bracket system. For those folks the guide options are limited - in most
cases we’ve got something that’ll work, but your options are scarce.

Many older guides used a solid roller for the chain to run on, but now most use some type of channeled pulley wheel. Is there a performance difference between the two?

We still employ a roller element in a few of our guides. The decision to use a pulley or roller really
comes down to the architecture of the guide. In most guide systems the various parts are there for
three functions: containment, tensioning, and protection. For our guides that employ a traditional crank-
mounted bashguard for protection and partially for containment, we use a roller. You can shape a roller
to provide tensioning as well as assist in the containment function of the guide. Giving the part two
duties reduces total part count, which keeps weight and complexity down.

Without a bashguard to provide protection and assist in containment, on guides that feature our patented
integrated skid, we must in many cases provide all of the functions of a guide into that singular part.
The smaller footprint of the pulley allows us to do that more freely. Another benefit of the pulley is that
its teeth keep the chain located in a very specific space, which is key when dealing with tight tolerances.
As for performance, the pulley provides slightly less friction than a roller, as there is less contact between
it and the chain. However, the larger size of the roller allows us to use a softer durometer material that
can be a touch quieter in use than that of the pulley. One is not really noticeably more efficient or quiet
than the other in the real world, so it’s hard to declare an outright performance winner.

Chain guide
The new G3's lower pulley can be swapped out for a slider block that is designed to be trouble-free in grimy conditions.

And what about guides that use a stationary lower slider in place of a pulley wheel... it looks like a step back, but is it?

Sliders and pulleys both have their merits for chain retention. Our G3 comes with both our slick, long-
wearing G-slide and a traditional pulley - and we leave it up to the user to choose which to use. The idea
to incorporate the slider block came from feedback from riders in extremely wet climates, like the Pacific
Northwest and UK, who reported experiencing shorter than normal bearing life out of their pulleys and a
degradation of performance caused by the buildup of mud and debris within the lower guide. We’re based in
the bone-dry desert where rain and mud are rare (and you certainly don’t ride here in those conditions)
so we’re not accustomed to those issues - I can’t say that I’ve ever worn out a pulley wheel! Nonetheless, we
decided to include both options.


  • 252 11
 You missed the most important question: why are they so bloody expensive?
  • 11 2
  • 19 0
 because people will buy it for that much too
  • 10 2
 It's called free market.
  • 33 109
flag lightningskull (Mar 12, 2013 at 6:05) (Below Threshold)
 the brits are always crying about prices
  • 39 7
 Yes, free market takes a roll. It's what makes this world go round ... deal with it. If there was not some money made in the manufacture of bicycle parts...people wouldn't do it. That being said, the bicycling industry is made up of people just like you and me, people who love and ride bikes. Because let's face it, you don't get wrapped up in this for the money- there are easier ways to get rich. Now, in regards to chainguides.... it's not just a material cost ... looks like a peice of plastic ? $150 ? whaaa??? Well, you have to design it. Test it. Design it again. Develop the tooling. Market them. Distribute them.... All Im saying is, after all that, they do have to make a profit. So that they can pay everybody to start working on the next great product.
  • 19 8
 I couldn't agree more. I shattered the pulley system and cracked the taco in two places I'm a matter of months on my MRP G2. Cheap, overpriced plastic. I don't see why some Chinese company couldn't manufacture similar guides for $25 a pop. I wish straitline had more guide options, instead of all these overpriced craptastic plastic guides.
  • 11 4
 Straitline's guide is a nice piece. They use plastic for the slider's - only. The rest is nicely finished aluminum (as one would expect from Straitline). I don't have one but Ive never read a single bad thing about them. Quiet and low friction. Maybe you could get a cheap chinese knock off? But I do wonder how far into your ride a $25 guide blows apart.
  • 3 1
 where did the wide back plates go.. some frames still need 7 and 1 o clock.,. not only 9-12 oclock..
  • 66 1

Us Brits like good value for money. We dont like being bent over and shafted up the arse for something that is clearly not. Perhaps money grows on trees in Canada but here in the UK £110 is two days work for your average hardworking monkey

and dont bother with the design and manufacture spiel I could design, built and hand carve one from granite rock in a weekend.
  • 5 23
flag dh-parkour-guy-003 (Mar 12, 2013 at 8:51) (Below Threshold)
 k pigeon, i'll be waiting for that granite guard on Monday lol, ya pricey, but so is replacing chainrings, bbs cranks and chains, plus I haven't jammed a chain on my 10 glory 00 yet, cant say the same for my 06
  • 6 6
 I challenge you to do that ....
  • 27 2
 @ PigeonLips ... I couldn't have ranted at that halfwit any better !!!
  • 13 0
 If we valued everything based on the sum of it's parts we might go crazy trying to justify spending a couple thousand on some aluminum tubes that have been welded together (frames), or how about $100 for two pounds of rubber (tires).
  • 6 2
 Thank you Noah ! ... somebody talking sense
  • 4 0
 Now your paying for the name of the brand, but you can buy components for much less than that you just have to search for the deals!
  • 11 2
 @Noah, guides are over priced. a frame and a guide is no fair comparison , a frame carry's you down the mountain at break neck speeds and a guide is just a piece of plate and a roller, frames are made by working hands ( welding, painting etc...) and a guide is something that a cnc cutter is crapping out, and some injection molded pieces attached to it.
  • 3 1
 holding a patent can up the prices too, but there are factory direct companies that are selling very good chiain guides for around £25-£30... guess it comes down to snobbery a lot in the mtb world
im guilty!!
i paid £125 for a guide from "the other" guide manufacturere cos it came in a pretty color with a limited ed team logo
yes im a slag for it
gotta agree with previous comments, i have a few friends with broken MRP plastics, they seem harder an there fore more brittle than the other companies plastic parts
also i have an old MRP system3 back plate that i ran with no bash gaurd just the rollers to hold the chain on an it Never let me down
  • 5 2
 Ok Aibek.... not arguing here btw, just discussion, what about $100 handlebars. What about $120 stems. What about $150 pedals, what about $100 seat posts ... I can keep going.
  • 6 2
 Mountain biking is just expensive, 5 grand on a push bike with nothing more than a few springs and a couple of wheels, yet for the same money you could get a decent car with an engine, stereo, sat nav, seats etc... kinda makes you think how can a push bike cost 5k, never mind £100 for a component
  • 3 1
 it can be if you want.. its the snobbery again, if you dont mind not having the latest bike or not that fussed about having last years color i know (from experience) that 5k bike could be built for 2k
  • 7 3
1. I never pay retail on anything (patience is a virtue ).

2. if you go to buy a bearing for a bearing for a mtb frame from your local lbs, i can promise you will pay more for that bearing and maybe even get a lower quality bearing than if you go to a bearing dealer (or a car parts dealer) and get the same bearing.
mtbr's are easy pray for the shops (lots of snake oil is being pushed at us).

3.My current bike cost me less than 3k and is spec'd like a 5k bike (here in israel).

4.closeouts and EBAY are your friends!
  • 10 1
 Not a fair comparison chunky. First off define "decent" .... second, 5k? You going to take that autocrossing? Because a 5k bike could be effectively raced. Just saying. I spent $1500 on adjustable coil over's for my car. I can get a top of the line fork for my bike for that? What's the deal?? Well..... I will tell you. $1500 for racing coil over's is "entry-level" number one. Number two, they look good, but they are in no way as sexy as some of the DH forks out there. We build this stuff to perform at the highest level, look good and last. Im not saying that some of this stuff is not "over-priced". Im just trying to be fair to all involved. Factor in that this is a very small market when compared to cars......VERY small, and that there is a lot of R&D that goes into it....
  • 5 2
 Aibek, are you reading what you type before you post it? "Just a piece of a plate and a roller"? Try telling that to any rider who's been injured because their chain fell off while they were cranking hard.

Chain retention is no joke. Have you ever bailed hard because your chain slipped? I've done it on I dunno how many occasions- all from lack of proper chain tension from varying causes and I honestly don't know why I haven't broken or dislocated my jaw while riding. Chain guides aren't just a bit of aluminum or carbon holding two rollers in place (the same way a frame could be looked at as a handful of 6061 tubes welded together to make these weird triangular shapes). If it's just a crappy part, why do WC downhill racers use them? Why do the guys at Rampage use them? Why do the average joes like us use them?

Because the function they provide is worth the premium we pay for them.

Yes, I've liked some guides better than others. There was a time when I got by with a $20 Blackspire Stinger flipped and running as the upper half of a guide rather than the tensioning lower half, and I actually liked that more than my $150 Diabolus guide.

Chain guides also have to go through the same stress and fatigue testing. Being that it's on the underside of the bike and super exposed, especially on suspension rigs, it has to be strong enough to take a beating and still function as intended.

My last trip to the hospital cost me $400 after insurance. Why? Because I hit the ground hard enough to take skin off my chin and need stitches. If a $150 chain guide is going to prevent that sort of thing multiple times, sign me up. Ride enough and it'll pay for itself without your ever knowing it.
  • 9 1
 Some of you need to pick up an economics book. Don't like the price, don't pay it. It's not like they're charging $6 for a bottle of water at rock concert. How much do you think the machines cost that make this guides, the salaries of those that design them, advertising, distribution, etc, etc. I've dealt with MRP on the phone before and online forums and they have been more than helpful. They are the only ones that make a backing plate for my bike (that I know of). Why wouldn't I pay the $150? To me it's worth it.
  • 3 1
 Aibek, I agree man. I never said I was rich. I am in fact not at all. I have not bought a new bike frame in years. I usually buy parts new, but I refuse to pay full pop for a frame. Just picked up a "new" 2010 Trek Wink As far as bearings go, yeah there are levels of quality and as in any field, cars, motorcycles, bicycles it helps to know a thing or two about what you are doing.
  • 4 1
 I'm on a brand new el guapo (800$ frame+shock Smile ), not disrespecting mrp i can understand their R&D costs, but still chain guides are overpriced (not just mrp's but everyone's ) , i'm running a sram x9 type 2 derailleur with a 1x10 setup and my chain hasn't fallen yet and i'm riding without a guide (for the moment).

to conclude (this is getting borderline trolling....,and i am an ASS) : Just go and enjoy your ride ! (with or without , a chain guide or a new chin Wink )
  • 2 0
 When it comes to price, are we ripped off.... of course we are, but we are willing to pay so the supply chain is willing to charge us.
CRC were recently doing the Straitline guide for £66.32 posted, and they will have still been making a good profit at that. It is now £109.99 on CRC, so somewhere they are making an extra £43.67 per guide!
So what is the manufacturing cost of the guide?
Retail for the parts is:
£60 for the backpalte!!!!!!! It is a cut piece of metal with a couple of steps in it guys, come on, that has to have a manufactuing cost of $1, $3 tops in China.
£46 for the bash ring
£15 for the silent guide
Then a few bolts.

I would guess around $10 to manufacture, inspect, pack and ship if made in China in a large enough volume.
  • 4 0
 Man look at all of these Paragraphs
  • 2 1
 What can I say, my company pays me to be on Pinkbike when it's slow...
  • 8 1
 E13 and MRP both make more affordable versions of their guides with stamped steel backplates. They weigh a bit more but function identically. If you think the top-end models are too pricey, I suggest you go to machining school for programming and execution, then major in plastics and composities, buy a mill and an injection-molding machine and make your own. Then tell me what it cost from start to finish, and if it works half as good as one of these that has over a decade of R & D behind the design. That's how markets work. You pay someone who specializes in making something you want/need because there isn't enough years in a lifetime to learn how to build everything in your life on your own. Welcome to life, get a helmet and get in line.
  • 3 0
 @lightningskull: us brits complain about the price of everything because our goverment rapes us when they decide their tax margin on everything!!
  • 2 0
 now don't go crying.. we are all getting raped.. but you lucky bastards wont go down when the euro does..
  • 1 1
 @FRguild: Try fouriers, lower roller and upper guide +glide/bash plate $30-40. Weight is adequate too.
  • 1 1
 @PigeonLips: +1, I've made many parts in my shed/kitchen, wherever, that I've seen produced later at stupid prices.

Take metal bottom bracket protectors, the type that are formed around the underside of the bb, and clamp onto the downtube at the bottle bolts.

Over $100 in the market.
Mine was the side panel of an old PC case, cut with a chisel (pre dremel era), hammered to shape and edges smoothed, double layer of inner tube underneath.

Same shit. Only mine cost...well, a couple of hours.

( I think Europe had it a lot tougher after the war and we learned to appreciate the value of parts over presentation, at the same time the u.s. Entered its commercial era quite heavily)
  • 1 0
 @Enzyme: dude, this thread is coming up on 4 years old.
  • 28 1
 Looks like a Session.
  • 18 0
 Narr defiantly a Kona with two 9 stickers
  • 23 0
 norbs got robbed
  • 11 0
  • 15 0
 ISCG-05 on a Trek? Sure it's not ISCG (-old/03)? Bolts can't get much closer to the BB than that I'd say. So?
  • 3 0
 Ah, beat me to it!
  • 3 0
 Well spotted !
  • 1 0
 Trek uses ISCG on most of their bikes. They have begun using ISCG-05 on the Remedy carbon and Ticket.
  • 15 0
 Great article thanks for the write up.
  • 10 3
 Just today another mechanic spend 2 hours trying to dial in a chainguide conversion from a triple to a single (pinch style and had to space out the bb cups so the triple crank would hit the chainguide) and also 9 speed to 10 speed rear
Going to single in the front will improve your shifting by 100%
  • 3 0
 I swapped into my Ragley Troof I have now, got a single Renthal 32t front and a 10sp rear, and it may punish my legs to no end, but guess what... trouble free and amazing performance! Wouldn't go back to save my life.
  • 8 0
 Trivia question: who was the first pro to use the original mrp chainguide?
  • 6 5
 Ted Huskey, Darren Brown, Warren woodward, Simon Lawtin, Jason Sigfried, Bart Mcdaniel, Mike Albright.
  • 9 2
 I believe I read in a very old issue old DIRT that it was Eric Carter. (He saw the prototype and asked if he could use it in the next day's race and it never came off his bike afterward as he was so impressed so the story went...)

So Protour, do I win the mystery prize for being the first correct answer? lol
  • 3 2
 Sorry skootur, warrenmtb is the man.

Impressive answer, those were all the first guys to have it, though I think either Sigfrid or DB was the first pro. I think Ted Husky was the inventer, right? Once other pros saw the set-up at the norba races everyone wanted one.
  • 2 0
 Definitely was not Eric Carter, despite all the positive props for Skootur and the claims of a British mtb magazine. It was made in Portland, OR, not California. Carter probably saw it on one of those guys bikes and was one of the first big name props to have get one.
  • 2 0
 Second prop for Warren, D Brown actually helped design/develop the first prototypes. I know Bart McD rode an original as well. It was a PNW affair, as they were originally based in Oregon if I remember correctly?
  • 5 0
 I wonder why G2 costs 2x more than G2 Steel with the only difference is that the backplate is alu. I mean a piece of aluminium with some holes in it should not cost fifty bucks am I right?
  • 6 0
 True but the word aluminium sounds so space aged and futuristic , thats gotta be worth 50 notes Wink
  • 4 0
 I think the steel plates are stamped out, whereas the aluminum has to be machined?
  • 2 0
 Na, just an excuse to rob you some more. My g2 performs just as we'll as my old e-thirteen LG1+ and was half the price. Only issue is it doesn't look as good but like I'm arsed about that.
  • 2 0
 The G2 Steel uses a stamped steel backplate which is less expensive to produce. There is also considerably more cost in the hardware of the G3. As a whole, the weight difference is about a quarter of a pound. They are both great functionally, but the G3 is easier to install, significantly lighter, and has more features (captive hardware, includes the G-slide, etc.).
  • 1 0
 @bigburd: Glass aluminum out this year????

Carbon is over, normal aluminum is like cast iron lol all moving too fast, not to mention the metal foams.
  • 3 0
 A G2 came fitted to my bike and within 6 months both the top guide and the roller protector shattered. At the time they didn't offer spares so am now running prototype (homemade) parts on it. Will be going back to e*thirteen next.
  • 2 0
 MRP plastic parts have been known to grenade on a regular basis around here too. I heard the new(2013?) plastic is stronger though. Anyone know for certain?

I'd also like to know how the strength and longevity of the carbon back plates are expected to be compared to aluminum?
  • 1 0
 Hopefully they are stronger as i've bent the bashguard tabs to 45 degrees out of place before too. Nothing a good old kick back into place couldn't sort!
  • 2 0
 We are using a new material (nylon) in our upper guides (and lower guides of 2x and G2sl parts). 9 times out of 10 the problems you describe are caused by material degradation caused by exposure to unapproved degreasers and lubes. Any polycarbonate parts, regardless of brand, will suffer the same fate in under those conditions. Thoughtful and careful application of degreasers and lubes will keep your parts going for season after season.

Our new Nylon parts are chemical resistant.
  • 1 0
 Tri Flo was to blame then?

Care to comment on the carbon back plate durability? Is the carbon back plate chemical resistant?
  • 1 0
 Carbon is great as a backplate material. Not only is it considerably lighter, but it also doesn't bend but rather flex and return straight if in a major impact. The Carbon G2SL was the stock guide on the Trek Session 9.9 and we haven't received a single warranty claim for a backplate issue. Before they even went to market I intentionally 50/50'd lots of boulders and the backplate was unscathed - no BS.

As far as chemical resistant, I'm not sure. But I don't think you should be lubing or degreasing your backplate. Smile
  • 1 0
 Thanks for the responses. Chain lube will inevitably get on the back plated from the chain. That is what I was referring to. I have a carbon AMg on order(March 22 availability?). Thanks.
  • 1 0
 A little here or there shouldn't be any problem. You're gonna love the AMg!
  • 2 1
 No degreaser ever used on mine and only a ceramic type chain lube used and less than three months old. still destoyed! will no be using mrp again unless they do something about it! replacement would be nice! Or better engineers!
  • 4 0
 The MRP Mini g2sl is by far the worst mtn bike product I have ever bought, So unreliable and puts way too much drag oon the driveline not to mention its super noisy. Went to a straitline silentguide and LOVE it
  • 2 0
 Straitline Silentguide is the best I tried. It just works. Sliders last like forever. Now it is what I ride on all my bikes!
  • 1 0
 I've got a G2 on my 2 three month old Giant glory 0 and the upper chain guide has given out allready with no dirrect impacts. BAd choice in the polymer as it is way to brittle and just cracked under the chain impacts! Bad engineering MRP!
  • 2 0
 I'm running a G3 guide with a 32 tooth MRP Bling ring in a 1x10 setup and its magic, previously I had MRP 2x10 guide and still dropped the chain every ride, it even pulled the chain out of the bottom guide and required loosening the guide to put the chain back on. 1x10 with guide is the goer!
  • 2 0
 There is, in my opinion, a really great way of fitting ISCG tabs:

Foes has a keyed ISCG-backplate. Very strong and if something goes wrong, mostlikely, the frame will not suffer. No tiny tabs with threaded holes. And if there will be "ISCG 7" - fit a matching backplate and upgrade. Worked a breeze with my new MRP.
  • 3 0
 This is the same system as on my Yeti SB66, it's a neat way of doing it. Also, when you're not using the ISCG tabs, you can fit a 'blanking plate' over the splines, for a slightly cleaner look.
  • 1 0
 Devinci used it on old Wilsons well my 2010 one had it. Don't know about the new ones mind
  • 1 0
  • 2 0
 I've got a G2 on my 2 three month old Giant glory 0 and the upper chain guide has given out allready with no dirrect impacts. BAd choice in the polymer as it is way to brittle and just cracked under the chain impacts! Bad engineering MRP!
  • 1 0
 Always bought E13 myself. Used MRP one time and found the bolts were made of cheese. Steel bolts would add only a fraction more in weight.
  • 1 0
 I'm contemplating not getting one if I don't have to. It looks like they place more resistance on your pedalling. (Not much but it would add up over time if doing a long ride (I want a downhill bike, but I won't be using it JUST for downhill.) But I still want to be able to smash a DH track when I choose to go on a technical track. Though, if I do end up doing intense DH tracks frequently, how effectively do they keep the chain on?
  • 6 0
 very, to the point where i wouldn't ride proper DH without one.
  • 1 0
 For anything that can be called dh,I would say one of those is mandatory, however, a proper guide has pretty much 100% efficiency, I have never had an issue since moving to 1ring and an e13 mtx.
  • 3 0
 I must admit I never saw the reasoning behind these however when I got my dh bike, equipped with an ethirteen quide, I now see it to be crazy to ride without one. Never have I had the issue of my chain coming off. Also I find myself riding places on my bike and notice no resistance. A downhill must have!
  • 1 0
 I worked at a shop a few years back and I had access to a demo Cannondale Perp3 with a pretty simple chain guide. ( 2 ring set up ) and I found it to have some drag while pedaling up his as well, especially in the small ring where a bike like the cannondale doesn't pedal so well.... so to solve this issue is that when I was doing my very long uphill grunts where I could pedal.. I would just pop the chain off the roller and then back on again for the DH. Also the Giant Reign XO ( 2010 ish, newer ? ) had a pretty sweet Raceface chainguide and I never noticed it while pedaling ( dual front ring set up ).... except for when the bolts eventually worked themselves loose and the guide slipped..

I'm running a 09 Intense SS and built it up to be allmtn/enduro friendly. I admit I messed up when I ordered my cranks but I bought a chainguide to go with it and with the narrow spacing I bought my crank axle length with I couldn't bolt up my chainguide with out it jamming against my smaller ring up front. Just make sure your chain and rear mech/derallier is set up properly and you will (hopefully) rarely drop a chain. I drop my chain a bit more now on the rough stuff mostly due to me being to cheap to buy a new front chain ring that is worn out very bad in one specific spot.

Happy shredding !
  • 3 0
 buy a good guide and you will have 100% chain retention. eventually you'll forget you ever dropped your chain....
  • 1 0
 I'm happy with my MRP 2X guide. I bought it two months ago. But if i broke some of its parts, taco, jockey wheels....can I buy spares? Or I have to buy the new one? And one more question, I have 40-42T, but it seem to it can work with 38T as well. Isn't just the size of taco different? Can I convert it some how in the case I will decide to get smaller chainring?
  • 1 0
 You can get 2X spares, they're quite easily available Smile
  • 1 0
 uh, so i have to check google better. I had problem to find some.
  • 2 0
 ups, I found them now. Sorry, my bad.
  • 1 0
 Got a G2 and it has been spot on. couldn't fit it to my 09 demo as it hit the swing arm so now running a silent guide. swapped the g2 on to my krisis and it is fine on there. my only gripe would be that the logo wears off so quickly making it look old n shoddy.
  • 1 0
 been running a G2 mini on my DH rig for almost a year now. It handled regular riding and 2 bike park weekends of ripping through rocks and roots and is still good as new! the taco took some hard hits and is barely scratched and both the upper "cage" and lower pulley wheel are still running smooth as silk. I do clean and lube the wheel when it gets full of mud, but bike maintenance is just part of our sport. In that regard maybe a lower slider will be more maintenance free. either way I'm totally happy with my G2, it was fit and forget! 15 minutes of fitting followed by months and months of forgetting my chain could drop. The mini version wich I own is also great for frames with clearece issues since its smaller (and lighter) and takes rings with up to 34 teeth wich has worked wounders with my close ratio cassete. I payed 60€ for it on CRC so I absolutely can't complain about the price. totaly satisfied costumer here..keep em coming MRP
  • 1 0
 With a clutch-equipped derailleur, is there really any point to a chainguide anymore except for bash protection? Since converting over, I can't hear my chain at all and I definitely haven't dropped the chain. And trust me, I've tried.
  • 2 0
 IMO for trail use absolutely not. Full on DH application, yes the lower pulley can save the day. The lower part of the chain can still go into a frenzy, although not as bad as without a clutched mech, the chain can still jump off the bottom under certain conditions. Epecially considering the rapid chain growth and shrink when 8 inches of suspension is getting a work out.
  • 1 0
 After the ISCG 05 was realeased you would have thought all companys would use them but I bought a Commencal Absolut 4x and an Orange Miii and but were made in 2010/2011 with old ISCG tabs.

So I'll have to fork out for a new chain guide backplate when replacing the frame or look for a frame with old ISCG tabs.

And they wonder way we hate new standards.
  • 3 0
 Lots of companies chose not to use the ISCG-05 standard because it limited their frame designs. That area of a frame is often home to pivots - going larger with the footprint of the chainguide tabs (like ISCG-05 did) limits where those can be.
  • 1 0
 IMHO the ISGC 05 standard is just too lacking in specific detail. I really believe that it should have defined other critical distances around the tabs to reduce interference with some of the back plates. Example: the tabs on the SC Nomad are a pain in the ass with loads of chain guides.
  • 3 0
 Am I the only one whose favorite pinkbike day in the week in now tuesday instead of monday? Big Grin
  • 2 0
 nop. love to the point as well. great stuff pinkbike! good juicy content to sink our nerdy theeth into
  • 2 0
 That´s why I had a GT it-1 and now a Zerode so I wouldn´t bother with this.
Long live internal gearing Smile
  • 2 0
 The Zerode is getting better each year, but I am hoping there will be someone who knocks it out of the ballpark with a lighter set up (instead of alfine) with a wider gear range. This will destroy the derailleur market and I can't wait for the day.

It really shouldn't be that hard, a group of good engineers could probably develop it in a week if not less....
  • 1 0
 While having only the "upper chain management" type chainguide, could you just pedal to the engaged chainlinks on the ring when the chain falls?
  • 1 0
 That's what I do. I've only had to do it once tho. When I was excessively pedaling backwards over some rough ground.
  • 1 0
 I'm not seeing the "Guide Chooser" on your website. But then again I took a big crash over my bars a few days ago so who knows..
  • 1 0
 Is having different PCD's on ISCG differing by .02mm on each axis a typo? Why not make all lengths the same??
  • 1 0
 1x10 with a mrp amg and a short cage clutch mech, would the chain stay on while pack pedalling?
  • 1 0
 Not everytime. But its good enough for me.
  • 1 0
 so there is no reason to have 2 ISCG standards. great.
  • 1 0
 love my E*13 SRS+ limited edittion Smile
  • 1 0
  • 2 3
 another advert really
  • 6 0
 Life's an advert. Get use to it.
  • 4 7
 Pinkbike is trying to push mrp product on to us
  • 5 3
 I suppose you have free will? So you don't have to buy it.
  • 4 2
 Yeah , just turn off your computer, burn your magazines, de-sticker your bike and hide in the closet with it. You will be all set.
  • 2 2
 So the guy gives up his time to tell us about chain guides and you complain that he wants to promote his product?

Do you also complain at all the free videos that splash the riders sponsors across the introduction?
  • 2 2
 Dam haters calm down. First of all he isnt i giving up his time slimboy he is doing his job and i just wanted to state that this website has started becoming bios towards products and companys that pay them to promote there products so i cant really trust there reviews
  • 1 0
 Hard to know what marketing hype can be trusted. But by posting it on pinkbike you know you're going to get real reviews from real users in the comments- oh and a lot of user bias that can at times be worse than the marketing Smile
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