Ducati.ms - The Ultimate Ducati Forum banner

Chain Adjustment - When and Why

24846 Views 17 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  davy.j
The principal reason why drive chains fail is from excess tension caused by being installed too tight. Since the swingarm pivot is not concentric with the front sprocket, the chain length needs to accommodate the constantly changing distance between the front and rear sprocket as the rear suspension moves up and down. So the dimension on the swingarm sticker is intended to prevent you from installing the chain too tight. Looser is O.K.

You’ll use the sticker tightness measurement when you need to reassemble after changing sprockets or changing a tire on a bike with double-sided swingarms. Bikes with single-sided swingarms have eccentric adjusters, so no adjustment is required when changing a tire.

Once the chain adjusters are locked down there’s no reason to periodically readjust the chain. Chains get longer, not shorter, as they wear.

As the internal pins and bushings in a chain wear, the chain length of the affected segment gets longer, and when it exceeds 2 mm for a 16-link segment, the chain needs to be replaced. Chains don’t wear evenly, but even if they did, the overall increase in length of a chain needing replacement is less than 11 mm. Consequently, you don’t need any periodic adjustments to compensate for this small amount of wear for the life of the chain. You do, of course, need to periodically check 16-link segments of the chain for excessive wear and replace the chain if necessary.

You’ll need do a chain adjustment when the chain has been loosened to change a tire or sprocket. Also, a 3,000 mile or so tire change interval seems like a reasonable time to check for chain stretch. If you bring your bike to a dealer for a tire change, ask them ahead of time to write down the chain stretch amount for at least three segments of chain. This will put them on notice that you expect them to do it. It’s not often a dealer will actually do the check and a snapped chain is the consequence.
See less See more
1 - 1 of 18 Posts
Chain maint,cleaning the chain,chain adjustment.I should bought a guzzi or a bmw,not really though,I like my Ducati st2,so much fun to ride.
I believe that most ducati owners feel the same about thier bike,how much do you care,I care alot,they are spendy and rare.
Not to mention,women who drive suv's just seem to stare.Probably wish thier husbands had more balls.Happens all the time,big ego boost.
It is true,the tighest the chain is going to be is when every thing is lined up in a straight line,because the swing arm pivot is behind the cs sprocket.circle deal.
If I push hard on my chain,on the center stand,it will touch the lower rubbing block,when I sit on it,and reach down,it moves 3/4 inch or so,you can hear it if it's too tight it will whine when you let of the throttle.
You don't want it flopping all over the place,jumping sprockets,
And you can pull back on the chain from the center of the rear sprocket,it should not move much,less than a 1/4#, I'd say,other wise it's time for new sprockets and chain.
It's not that much $,everything is 250.00 from sprocket center for my st2.
And no,I don't work for them or care where riders buy there stuff.
So when it's all lined up in a straight line,you want some slack,1/4# at least.
Just my 2 cents.
See less See more
1 - 1 of 18 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.