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Discussion Starter #1
other than the 520 chain being lighter is there any advantage or disadvantage between the two sizes of chain/ sprockets
thanks in advance
Nev
 

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Yes, 520 is lighter, as are the sprockets.

Not surprisingly, 525 is stronger. The stronger 525 probably wears longer but I think chain quality is a bigger factor in chain life than the size difference.

The heavier chain, like a heavier flywheel, wants to keep going the speed it's going. Thus the 520 feels a little more responsive. It's questionable how much you notice it.

The chain (and rear sprocket) contributes to unsprung weight, so that's another benefit of the lighter chain that has a greater impact than the simple weight difference might suggest.

So, as long as the 520 is strong enough, as it certainly seems to be, there are a lot more arguments for the 520 than the 525. Like many choices on the SC's, Ducati seems to have gone with a lower quality 525, rather than the more expensive option of a high quality 520.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hi Major
The reason for the question is that a supplier that i had ordered a 525, 14/41 sprocket and chain set, almost 5 weeks ago, got back to me with the news that the 41 tooth sprocket is not available until who knows when. But they did offer a 520 set in it's place (Stealth tri metal sprocket and D.I.D chain)
Thanks Major your depth of knowledge is amazing
 

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if you do go with the 520 option, let this forum know of your results, feedback etc. I for one am interested in if you find a noticable difference and/or any plus or minus to the conversion.
 

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It's fairly standard to do the 520 conversion on most race bikes, including liter bikes with hp that is far in excess of a 1000DS motor.
 

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Many 520 chains are stronger than our OEM chain. The 520 chain sprocket conversion is well worth it.
 

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Many 520 chains are stronger than our OEM chain. The 520 chain sprocket conversion is well worth it.
Yes, reading my post, I made it sound like a higher quality chain lasts longer but might not have any impact on strength. That is not true. I agree with your statement. Higher quality chains are stronger AND longer lasting then lesser chains in the same size, and some lesser chains in larger sizes.
 

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Tales of the Front Sprocket

One of the easiest performance changes that a new owner can make is to lower the final drive gear ratio by changing the sprockets. The stock gearing is selected to enable Ducati to reduce exhaust emmisions, but is simply too high for most road use.

Ducati bike models have a wide range of torque output and the size of the chain and Ducati’s selection of sprockets reflect this range of outputs. All Ducati current models, except the 748 and 749, come with 15-tooth front sprockets. The more powerfull 749R is 15T.

The 748 and 749 series (with the exception of the 749R) all have torque outputs below the 78Nm of the original 916, so they are supplied with 14-tooth front sprockets. The 748’s got 520 chains.

The 749’s get 525 chains, probably more for parts standardization than for strength. I remember from the product introduction that that was one of the major design objectives of the new models.

Starting with the higher torque 916-series (and 749R), and continuing with the 996, 998 and 999, the factory moved to a 15-tooth front sprocket and a 525 chain. Why? Because more torque means more chain tension and a 15-tooth front sprocket lowers the tension in the chain by seven percent. A 525 chain has a tensile strength that’s ten percent higher. So you get an overall 17 percent stronger setup.

Still-higher torque SP, SPS, R and Corsa models output over 100Nm so how do they get away with 14-tooth sprckets and light-weight 520 chains? That’s easy. Once you get over a certain torque level (for a given weight bike) the bike will wheelie before the chain tension exceeds it’s strength limits. At least for awhile, chains on these bikes don’t usually see 15,000 miles of service.

So, what does this tell us about changing our final drive components. Three things.

First, as a general rule, it’s better to increase the rear sprocket size to avoid the higher chain tension resulting from a smaller front sprocket.

Second, the heavier the bike, the higher the chain tension needed to make it wheelie and the higher the maximum chain tension it will experience. So, a 680 pound 916-plus-rider will generate a higher chain tension than (say) a lightweight Corsa-plus-jockey or even a Suzuki GS-X. When a chain under tension elongates one percent, it needs replacement. Frequently for a Corsa bike.

Third, combining a change to a smaller front sprocket with a change from a 525 to a 520 chain on a higher-torque model Ducati will significantly weaken the final drive load capacity. Reports of chain failures are common enough, so it may not be wise to ignore this point for the sake of saving 275 grams of chain weight.
 

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I use the 520 conversion on my highly modified Paul Smart and on my highly modified Aprilia SL 1000, but I always change my gearing by going with a larger rear sprocket vs. the smaller front sprocket for the very reasons mentioned by Shazaam. I tend to change parts before they wear out. I tend to change my chains and sprockets all at about 15K, just to be on the safe side. I ride around 20K miles per year. Most of those miles are on twisty roads. I notice a 1-tooth difference in rear sprocket size. I notice a significant difference in my bike's handling any time I do anything that reduces rotating mass. The more I can reduce rotating mass, the more amazed I am at the way that my bike handles. Going with the 520 conversion saves money and reduces rotating mass with no appreciable difference in parts longevity or reliablity, provided you go with high quality parts when you make the conversion.
 

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:D:D
I use the 520 conversion on my highly modified Paul Smart and on my highly modified Aprilia SL 1000, but I always change my gearing by going with a larger rear sprocket vs. the smaller front sprocket for the very reasons mentioned by Shazaam. I tend to change parts before they wear out. I tend to change my chains and sprockets all at about 15K, just to be on the safe side. I ride around 20K miles per year. Most of those miles are on twisty roads. I notice a 1-tooth difference in rear sprocket size. I notice a significant difference in my bike's handling any time I do anything that reduces rotating mass. The more I can reduce rotating mass, the more amazed I am at the way that my bike handles. Going with the 520 conversion saves money and reduces rotating mass with no appreciable difference in parts longevity or reliablity, provided you go with high quality parts when you make the conversion.
Two very insightful posts! I decided to stay with 525 on my 1098, even though I am obsessed with lightweight (but have gone to 520 on my less powerful duallie). My reasoning was the greater strength of the 525 IN THE EQUIVALENT BRAND/QUALITY, which should translate to less requirement for adjustment. This can be of great benefit on tour, especially when bulky tools are needed for the job (eg. single-sided SA models). An aspect not really mentioned in the thread so far is that of lubrication and maintenance. I lube chain frequently (when it is WARM). I also run an alloy (DP) rear sprocket, and replace chain and both sprockets together (in the case of the 1098, at about 19,000 kms) before they are too badly worn. (With a steel rear sprocket you can sometimes replace only the chain and front sprocket, and reuse the rear until the next time).
 

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Stick with the 525 . I wouldnt put a 520 on it no way unless its a race bike and the old ones were worn out and needed replacing .
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Stick with the 525 . I wouldnt put a 520 on it no way unless its a race bike and the old ones were worn out and needed replacing .
That was my point spooner.Their worn out. And I have been offered the 520 to replace the 525 becouse the supplier can't get the 525 until who knows when. and i can't wait until who knows when!!!!!!
cheers
Nev
 

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That was my point spooner.Their worn out. And I have been offered the 520 to replace the 525 becouse the supplier can't get the 525 until who knows when. and i can't wait until who knows when!!!!!!
cheers
Nev
If there is a problem with availability on the 525, I would go with the 520. I am not hearing any negative reports or reasons why you shouldn't use it. I would not worry so much about astral physics as I would just being able to ride. 520 is a far more standard size. I am going with OEM (525) stuff for replacement and picking up a 14T in case I am not happy with the stock ratio. If you are going to be waiting for an extended period of time, I'd go 520.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Most of the Japanese superbikes use 525 chains. Try one of their dealers. Honda uses a nice gold color 525.
Hi Shazaam
Getting the chain by it's self is no problem. I also needed to replace the sprockets that is where the problems lies. Unless you can know what model Jab bikes sprockets will fit a SC.
Cheers
Nev
 

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Hi Shazaam
Getting the chain by it's self is no problem. I also needed to replace the sprockets that is where the problems lies. Unless you can know what model Jab bikes sprockets will fit a SC.
Cheers
Nev
How come a problem getting sprockets ? 520 is for trail bikes, unless its special purpose race chain . 525 is the modern day 530. Common as anything now.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
How come a problem getting sprockets ? 520 is for trail bikes, unless its special purpose race chain . 525 is the modern day 530. Common as anything now.
I dont know why it's a problem may be if i knew that there would not be a problem:rolleyes:I really dont know much about chains, especially the sizes (520,525,530 etc) except for the invalable info from the major and others have shared and what i have looked up (on the internet). Which is that the majority of Ducati’s run 520 chains and sprockets pre 2004.(which i would guess are not trail bikes) I'm not a boy racer nor do i even try to keep up with the lads on the 1098's, 999',s when we go for a ride , so ripping it apart should not be a problem . I have all ready payed for the chain and sprocket set and was offered the 520 in place of the 525 (which i still dont know what the 005 differance is: 520-525=5 ) I do appreciate your input,, but trail bikes or special purpose race chains!!, i have three other bikes, a 71 triumph TR6R, 36 Frances Barnett and a 56 panhead, all 520 chains.
Cheers
Nev
 
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