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Offline Long Island

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Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« on: March 13, 2017, 06:35:54 PM »
Hi. bought an XR a few days ago and it's the first bike I've had in many years that doesn't have a shaft final drive. I would love to take the bike on a 1000 to 2000 mile ride later this Summer, but I imagine that it will likely need the chain adjusted along the way. It seems as if a couple of large heavy wrenches are needed to adjust the chain, so I've been wondering what people carry with them for chain adjustment on extended rides? Are there some compact tools that can be used? If I make sure the chain is adjusted near the tight end of the tolerance before a trip is it reasonable to expect it won't need to be re-adjusted for a couple of thousand miles? If so maybe I wouldn't need to carry heavy tools with me.

Also, can anybody recommend a compact chain lube container for bringing along on a trip. The commercially available ones I've seen are fine for lubing your chain home in your garage, but are pretty large to carry with you on a trip, when your luggage will be filled with other things.

Any advice or suggestions about how to care for a chain or adjust a chain while traveling would be appreciated.
Thank you.

Offline Winger

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2017, 06:44:59 PM »
I'd say the chances of you needing to ajust the chain on a 2000 mile trip is nil,as for lubing normally take a 500ml can of Wurth dry lube and read the instructions ie how long to shake it and the best time to put it on because if you don't it doesn't work half as well.

There's another thread about what I carry in case I need to ajust the chain,like I have today because the dealer set it too tight.

Offline Long Island

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2017, 06:57:08 PM »
Thanks for that quick reply Winger. I don't have enough experience with drive chains to know how long they can go between adjustments, so it's good to hear that 2000 miles shouldn't be a problem. I'll get myself some of the Wurth dry lube and I'll also check out your other thread about what you carry to adjust the chain.

Loving the new XR. It begs to be taken on a longer ride.

Offline ogden

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2017, 07:56:15 PM »
If your chain stretches so much in 2000 miles that it needs adjusting, it needed replacing before you left home.

I say this as someone who had to replace his chain in the street outside a dealer in Bulgaria a few years ago. Do as i say, not as i do, etc.
Current stable: S1000XR | 990SMT | GSXR1000 | YZF-R6 #7

Offline ampj8

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2017, 09:26:19 PM »
Well for around 90 usd you could install the HP Chain adjusters which come with a special tool, then you can adjust your chain easily.


Offline Long Island

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2017, 04:12:02 PM »
Thanks for that Ogden. As I said above, I have no recent experience with bikes that have chain drives, so I'm unfamiliar with how far they can go without adjusting. Good to know I can avoid adjustments on a 2000 mile trip, assuming I start with a chain that's in good shape.

Ampj8, I am aware of the HP chain adjuster, but looking at pictures of it, it appears to still require a large wrench to loosen the axel nut. Am I wrong about that? If it avoids the need to bring along a large wrench I would gladly install one. Thanks.

Offline ogden

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #6 on: March 14, 2017, 05:08:00 PM »
Yeah, you'll be fine. Mine was 14000 miles old when I left home, and the engine had some running problems which meant it'd been yanking the chain hard a lot, at random, and that probably didn't help. Should really have replaced it while preparing for the trip. It still got me from London to Istanbul and back as far as Plovdiv before it started making ominous clunking sounds. Luckily we were about 12km from Pazardzhik, where there's pretty much the only KTM dealer I managed to find in Bulgaria, but the workshop was closed, hence having to do the swap in the street. Adjusting wasn't an option, as one of the adjuster screws had seized up. Testament to how rarely it'd actually needed adjusting. But when they go, they really start to go...

Anyway, point being, even an already-shagged chain did over 2000 miles before it *had* to be replaced or adjusted. A healthy one will go way beyond that. Just give it a squirt of lube every other day on the trip, or every day if conditions are wet, and you'll be fine.

As to the adjuster, that big nut is the only thing holding the spindle in place, so you'll never find a way to do without it. All the little screw really does is give something for the adjuster block to rest against, and hold it in place while you're tightening the nut. Allegedly, if the little screw were to break, you'd be able to ride for weeks without it. Again, do as I say, not as I do, etc.  :164:
Current stable: S1000XR | 990SMT | GSXR1000 | YZF-R6 #7

Offline Long Island

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2017, 02:08:27 AM »
As I thought, it's the big nut that secures the axel in place. Thanks Ogden. That implies that if one intends to be able to adjust the chain while on the road, a large wrench must be among the things you carry. Based on the replies above, however, it seems to be confirmed that that won't be necessary on a ride of "only" a couple of thousand miles, assuming the chain was in good shape and properly adjusted at the start of the trip. I now feel comfortable going on such a trip without said bug wrench. I'll adjust the chain before I go, keep the chain lubed, and enjoy the ride without having to load myself down with a big wrench. I appreciate the replies.

Offline PaulS1000XR

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2017, 02:53:47 PM »
The chain tends to stretch most in the first 1000 miles, thereafter only need to adjust every 4k to 6k.

Chain needs lube every 500 miles and cleaning if dirty. I use SDoc 100 chain lube which lasts well. I did use Wurth but found the chain rusted
PSH

Offline Long Island

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Re: Chain Maintenance While Traveling
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2017, 07:58:06 PM »
That's good to know Paul. I should have around 2 to 3 thousand miles on the chain before my 2000 mile trip, so  that should work out well. Thanks.