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Tech Talks: Trailside Chain Repair, Presented by Park Tool - Video

Dec 29, 2016
by Pinkbike Staff  
Tech Talks Presented by Park Tool

Tech Talks Presented by Park Tool is a monthly video series hosted by Park Tool's own wrench whisperer, Calvin Jones. The new series will cover the A to Zs of some of the most prevalent repair jobs, with the sixth episode showing you how to fix your chain while out on the trail.

Last month we learned some tricks for when you need to fix a wheel out in the wild to keep you rolling rather than walking, and now Park Tool is going to show us how to do the same thing when we have an issue with the chain. Below, you'll learn how to do everything from basic chain repair to making the best out of a disaster by turning your bike into a single-speed so you can pedal out of the bush.

Tech Talks - Trailside Chain Repair

Views: 7,992    Faves: 25    Comments: 2

Need more Calvin in your life?
Episode #1 - tubeless tire installation and conversion
Episode #2 - saving that bent disc rotor
Episode #3 - derailleur hanger alignment
Episode #4 - Shimano and Crankbrothers pedal service
Episode #5 - Trailside wheel repair

Stay tuned for more mechanical how-to videos with Calvin returning on the last Thursday of every month to show you the easiest way to get the job done. Want to know more? Park Tool's how-to section has you and your bike covered.

www.parktool.com / @ParkToolCompany

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Member since Jul 22, 2013
3,491 articles

  • 10 1
 They should mention that if it is a full suspension bike the single speed set up is a little trickier. You have to account for the tension added when the bike sags into its travel. Same idea just a little more difficult to judge how tight the chain will get when you are seated on the bike. The firmest settings on most rear shocks will still sag adding some tension. If it is the perfect tension without you on it, it will be way too tight when you sit on the bike and try to ride.
  • 9 0
 Park videos are exceptionally well made, i didn't learn anything but was still mesmerized by it lol
Quick link, master link or whatever you call them has to be the best bike invention ever !
  • 6 0
 what happens if your beard gets stuck in your chain?

i remember as a kid a dude who had his foot stuck between the chainring and the chain.. true..
  • 4 0
 –°ompetent bike mechanic, is very well explained.
I like to watch and listen to a lot of interesting things can be found in his video)))
Thank you Calvin)
  • 1 0
 Quick question: I always carry a spare quick-link or two but have thought about also carrying a small section of spare chain to repair any broken or bent links on the trail. I mean a section of unused chain, the part that I cut off to fit the chain in the first place. Would doing this to a slightly worn chain and cassette potentially cause problems? Better to just cut off the bent links, rejoin it and not use the two largest cogs, even in a remote spot where the big cogs would be useful for getting home?
  • 2 0
 As long as the chain isn't too badly worn out/had breaks happen in the past, I can't see that being a big problem.At worst it may skip over the new links slightly.
  • 5 0
 @Lornholio, you have a great idea. The basic answer here is that the more worn our your chain is, the more likely you are to have an issue with your replacement links, but if you're using those replacement links, it might beat having to walk out of the woods. As a rule, remember that if you're resorting to these emergency links, you'll have to take it easy on the ride home after your mishap.
  • 1 0
 Makes sense. Thanks @ParkToolCompany.
  • 1 0
 I've actually created a chain from quick links and leftovers even crossing brands , and it worked fine on a singlespeed.
  • 1 0
 One time I was helping a buddy who had destroyed his derailleur and we were trying to single speed. I didn't check for twisted links - so by the time I had sliced and diced the chain to the SS length, there wasn't enough straight chain left, and the chain kept walking up and down rear cog because of the twist. I learned to check the chain for damage before I started working on it the hard way...
  • 1 0
 Been there done that, the worse case scenario were riveting chain back with two rocks... and it worked flawless Wink BTW twisted chain can be straighten with two sets of pliers Smile
  • 2 0
 How did you get the pin out?
  • 2 0
 @WaterBear: I'm guessing the same as when I had to do it. My tool snapped getting the pin out so I broke the chain fine but had to hammer it back in.
  • 1 0
 @petehaddock: yup use the force, some times chain brake so that pin is left in one side of the link so you gotta bent it back and hammer with something hard and handy Big Grin
  • 1 0
 @petehaddock: Kmc? Broken 3 chain tools on them, including a kmc branded tool. Now carry a very strong nail and nut to sit it on while I hammer with a rock or whatever > saves weight I guess and if you can't find a rock on a mountain..well.
  • 1 0
 and when you are trying to fix your chain IN the freezing weather & snow, hahahaa. the steps are:
take winter gloves off, do 1 minute of the work, put gloves back on and wait for 5 minutes.
  • 1 0
 Good video, but why the hell doesn't he just remove more links to get the chain onto the cog he wants when he converts to single speed?
  • 1 0
 Maybe to be safe and use as much of original chain as possible... :]
  • 1 0
 I tried that single speed conversion as shown in the video but it doesn't work, the chain need to be tensioned properly so it's necessary using a chain tensioner/derailleur anyway.
  • 2 0
 He's trying to get the best chain tension possible. If he'd have removed a link he wouldn't have been able to install the chain onto that sprocket anyway. One link makes a massive difference to chain tension.
  • 1 0
 Basically: remove 1 link, too loose. remove 2 links, too tight.

Shift into one larger cog, remove 1 link, just right!
  • 1 0
 @acali: I did it but the chain remains too loose anyway
  • 1 1
 @Gfromars: Check the b-screw, if it still is an issue..Larger arm on the derailleur needed maybe?! had similar issues after switching from a mid length cage to a short cage, b-screw tweaking got it there though.
  • 1 0
 @Enzyme: b-screw?
  • 3 0
 Love the tech info and the friendly presentation.
  • 1 0
 And then theres me, still rolling with a reused link for three months now. Still have a chance to win that shimano xt drivetrain set though...
  • 1 1
 Gwin called. That article came out way too late for him and he wants his chain back. Thank god that he still won Leogang 2015.
  • 1 0
 My tablet wont let me watch the video ,can someone send me a link ?????
  • 1 0
 All my chain is now just made of master links and it works flwlesly Big Grin
  • 1 0
 Love all these, please keep them coming

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