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Back to clips.
Some users have had problems. Chatting with the folks that have had problems, it does not surprise me.
None of the guys I know of, that have raced, who have put the clip on the correct way around, who have oiled the chain, and checked the wheel alignment, have had a problem. None of the owners of the many new and use bikes of the previous era, that I sold, had a problem.
Some folks have trouble putting their pants on one leg at a time. What some riders do, can be quite surprising.
They can break and crash and wreck stuff, faster than many of us can imagine.
The more severe test is off road, thru the creeks and bogs, over the logs, 40 crashes per day, racing thru the jungle. I never saw a bike stopped because of a lost chain.

BUT, and I think more importantly, and to the opening question: I run a similar bike with the cheap chain and an old style link, and it works fine. And today I matched my top speed up the steep hill. 70 mph.
Up the page I said I use the more modern chain on my bigger bikes. UK
 

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Ace Tuner
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3,028 Posts
OK, let's stick with my question please? .....
..... buy the $100+ heavy pro style chain tool if you want to get more than a couple of uses out of it. THAT was my question, do I need to follow that advice, or is there a more economical tool that w ill suit my needs for a rivet link?
Here you go.
This one is fancier and more expensive than the one I've been using professionally (and successfully) for well over 20 years.
I think mine was sold by RK. You could search for more options.
BTW.
Before I knew better I threw a chain out of my old Kawasaki H2 750 Triple after the clip connecter came off.
When endurance racing a Yamaha RZ 350 we luckily found the clip missing on our non-O ring, low friction chain Before The Chain Let Loose. We safety wired a new clip in place and continued.
In the shop...
Through the years I've had to tell a few customers that their bike is totaled out because the drive chain came apart and broke the engine case. (Clip connecter) <

S F
 

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I like it. The link press tool.
I have wyred a chain together on a QA50.
It is interesting the different experiences folks have had. UK
 

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27 Posts
Discussion Starter · #49 ·
I guess I'll just use the $5 clip link for now until I come up with a better solution later. I'm not worried with my conservative riding style. I'm 61, weigh 150 lbs and have early stage lymphoma. I doubt I am going to cause a clip link to dump a chain, provided I install it correctly, which I know how to do.

Maybe later I if I find a reasonably priced, quality rivet link tool I will try it that way.
 

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I would like to tell you how I did my last one, but I forgot. If I searched the tool box I would probably find the tool, something like semi is looking for.
Large rear end suspension travel, and a tight chain, with fast riding over bumpy roads, is often a cause for problems, and crashes. This thread is so long I also forgot what you are riding. A 400 Honda ? UK
 

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.....seems the heavy chain breaker tool that is recommended by at least one shop costs more than the what I paid for the damn chain. Now, I don't expect to be breaking chains on a regular basis, so do I really need a $135 chain tool?
Some of the cheap chain tools are adequate for the job. My cheap (~$30) tool has only done
one chain so far. The head of the rivet pin is still in perfect condition, so it should be good for
a few more before it needs replacing.

The golden rule is that you should never use a chain breaker to break a chain. Modern
Japanese chains are so tough that you will almost certainly destroy the tool if you
try to push out a riveted pin without grinding the head off first.

Use the tool for pressing on the side plate and flaring the soft rivets.

And how many times can you take a chain off a bike before you create some damage?
Only once. Removing the rivet link always destroys it. Apart from
the cost of buying new links, there is nothing to limit the number of times you
can remove and refit the chain.

I got a sealed chain. I think this means o-rings. Is an XR type different from an OR type?
Yes. Sealed chains have O-rings. Different brand may use a different profile for the rings;
X, W, Z-rings and so on. Some of these proprietary types seem to have an advantage
over a plain O-ring. In some cases, I suspect the claims made for different profiles are
driven by the marketing department rather than engineering.

And is the master link the link you always want to remove?
Yes.
 

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American Legion Rider & sub-Administrator
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I'd like to see some links of cheap examples and good examples and bet others would too. Just for education purposes. Just throwing the word cheap and good around without having something to relate to means nothing for those just getting into bikes and chain replacement. So how about a little help in that area folks.
 

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I'd like to see some links of cheap examples and good examples and bet others would too. Just for education purposes.
Japanese made tools like the RK and DID chain tools are made by the same people who
make the best chains. They are very good, but the price is hard to justify for someone like
me that only replaces a chain every few years.

The best 'cheap' chain riveting tool I have used is the AFAM chain riveter.
This can be used to press on the side plates and flare the rivet heads. It
can not be used to break a chain.
AFAM Chain Riveter

My own cheap breaker/riveter is similar to this one:
Sealey Motorcycle Chain Breaker & Riveter - VS779
It is pretty low quality and I wouldn't expect it to survive frequent, heavy use.
However, it has fitted one chain without any visible damage. Hopefully it will
rivet a few more. I would never use it to break a chain.

BTW, our local motorcycle shop uses a bench vice and a ball bearing to rivet
chains. They know from experience which size ball bearing to use and how
much flare is needed.
 

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On The Road Again!
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3,951 Posts
I've been sitting here reading through this whole debate about chain tools, when suddenly it hit me.....
Why am I reading this at all? I ride a Goldwing!!
LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
 
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American Legion Rider & sub-Administrator
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I've been sitting here reading through this whole debate about chain tools, when suddenly it hit me.....
Why am I reading this at all? I ride a Goldwing!!
LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Footer says you have a trail 90 (y) is that the one with the 2 different size rear sprockets?
:LOL: I bet that one has more then one cir-clip master link.
 

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On The Road Again!
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3,951 Posts
Footer says you have a trail 90 (y) is that the one with the 2 different size rear sprockets?
:LOL: I bet that one has more then one cir-clip master link.
No, mine's a '77 with the dual range transmission. No need to mess with the chain. And with how little I've ridden that thing recently, I won't be needing a new chain for a looooong time.
 
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I have the two rear sprocket model. And I bought a new chain for it a few weeks ago. There is still other work to do before Pushrod is running again.
 

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2010 Kawasaki Concours 1400
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Hi Randall, I've riveted on a few motorcycle chains. The general rule of thumb is any bike with a displacement of 400cc should have the chain riveted on, clips are safe to use on smaller displacement bikes. If for any reason that clip comes off while your riding (they never come off when the bike is parked) the chain can get wrapped around the rear sprocket and lock up your rear wheel. This will happen fast, if your very lucky you will skid to a stop, if not, you know what happens next. Is there a local bike mechanic near you that could help you out?
Drive chains on all bikes are CRITICAL components, failure can cause injury or death. Dirt bike chains are also put through hell, dirt, muddy water, bouncing off logs, getting pushed in horizontal directions, you name it.
Another thing to consider is the manufactured quality of the chain. BikeMaster is the lowest quality. They are made in China to Chinese specifications, they will wear/stretch faster than a good chain. The wear will allow the links to wobble side to side more, another reason why I would want it riveted on vs a clip. Also, from personal experience, the inner tubes BikeMaster makes are paper thin, some of them leak air right out of the box.

Also, when you use the tool to rivet on a chain there is a spec for the flare the rivet end. For a 530 chain the flare should be 5.5 to 5.8. You really need a vernier caliper to measure this properly. If the end of the rivet is flared over to much the rivet will usually get a split in it. I usually end up backing the tool off, measure, flare a little more then measure again, repeat till it's in the spec range. Watch a few videos on YT to see how a new chain is riveted on. Hey, if your near Boston, I'll put the chain on for you for free. Do it right the first time, you might not have second chance.
 
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