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How to Choose a Chain For your Mountain Bike?


Every mountain biker’s life comes to an end when it’s the moment for changing the chain on their bike. What mountain bike chain, on the other hand, you must get? And, after you’ve chosen the proper one, how would you install and maintain it?
Because there are so many various bike chain manufacturers, drivetrain brands, and gear numbers on mountain bikes, finding the right chain for your bike can seem like a minefield. Luckily, it isn’t as difficult as it appears at first.

This mountain bike chain buying guide will show you how to choose the proper chain for your bike and how you would replace and care for it.

When can you change the mountain bike’s chain?

If you crush a chain in the rock and turn an unbalanced connection, or if the chain entirely snaps, it’s usually ready for a fresh one. While it is feasible to unfasten the damaged chain and reinstall it, it is preferable to purchase a fresh chain.

Mountain bike drive and chain systems, on the other hand, deteriorate and need to be replaced after enough use. A chain’s lifespan is determined by the circumstances wherein you ride, how well you maintain the drivetrain, as well as how much energy you put through it.

However, there are a few easy techniques to determine whether the bike’s chain needs to be replaced. For example, if your bike’s gears begin to move and bounce frequently, a chain might get away. By stretching the lowest piece of the chain, which runs among the base of the back derailleur and a lead chain ring crosswise, you can test a chain without any tools. If the links seem rattly and loose, they might be worn, and the chain bends a lot.
The length between links may be measured with certain instruments to examine the quality of the chain. These are quite inexpensive to buy, but because you’ll only need them once in a while, it’s usually best to ask a bike store, which is available locally, for them.

What kind of mountain bike chain must you purchase?

Most current mountain bikes have a 1X drive technique, implying they have only one front chainring (rather than the three typical previously) and a broad variety of gears present on the back of the cassette.
Several manufacturers provide a variety of pricing points with various fancy names; however, picking the proper chain is easier than it appears. The most crucial factor is to select a chain that represents the amount of gears present on your bike.
Many bikes are 10-, 11-, or 12- velocity, and a chain will be prominently labeled when purchased. First, count the amount of gears or speeds your bike has (multiply the amount of gears on the back cassette by the amount of chainrings in the front), then select the appropriate chain.

Is it possible to combine drivetrain elements from several manufacturers?
Yes, you may mix various brands of the chainring, cassette, crank, chain, and derailleur. However, it’s ideal to use parts from an identical manufacturer for the greatest results.

When changing a chain, must you change the cassette as well?
The back cassette (gear sprockets) doesn’t always require to be substituted while you’re changing the chain. However, if the cassette shows signs of wear (the teeth appear to be worn down), it must be changed.

How would you extract an old chain?

Chain tools that are specific By pressing the connection of the links, you can divide chains. However, certain chains can be removed without the need of any equipment — a ‘fast link’ can be severed manually or using non-specialized tools.

Dividing fast links is simple – you press the pin into the larger whole and then unstrap the chain – however it isn’t always straightforward. A set of pliers could be used for assisting the press the quick link’s two ends closer together. Then, close the pliers to help move the simple link into its open position by inserting the front of the pliers in the chain in the same manner chainring teeth would when the chain is on it.
A chain tool is found in the most competent multi-tools. The chain device is utilized to remove a chain’s central connecting point. Ensure the chain is aligned with the tool’s guide (which aids in keeping the chain in place) and that the pin is pulled out directly from the front with nothing falling off-line. Leave the pin inside the outer plate rather than pushing it fully out of the chain, so you may refit it if necessary.

How would you determine the length of your chain?
Although quick links are useful for maintenance, they do not remove tools when replacing a chain. You’ll still need a chain tool to reduce a fresh chain from the box because all chains are too long to accommodate various bike sizes and gearing sets.
Measuring the unused chain instead of the one you’re replacing is the simplest approach to figuring out how long it should be.


Going back to the fundamentals, the greatest thing you can fully take advantage of from a bike’s chain is primarily repaired. Aside from greater durability, a new chain that is oiled properly may improve drivetrain performance by reducing friction and leading to softer, faster pedaling and gear shifting.

Bypassing the chain through a succession of degreaser and brushes fluid, you can fully remove scum from the chain. But, of course, if you don’t have the funds to purchase a specialist cleaner, you may always scrape the entrenched filth off the chain using an older toothbrush and a normal degreaser.

Don’t forget to oil up your chain after it’s clean and bright. The cost of quality oil is low, and numerous alternatives are available, including recyclable green oils.