A few drivetrain tips for idiots

I’ve been getting some long, increasingly annoying emails about chains making funny noises, derailleurs not working properly and whatnot. Two common themes: 1. People mixing used components. 2. People turning screws with no idea what those screws do. Real quick:

The more you click, the more I can post. Lee Likes Groceries dot com!

DO NOT mix worn chainrings, chains and cassettes. Dude, I know you scored a sweet chain and cassette at Veloswap, each for $5, but now they’re making a funny noise. And you know what else? When you put down full power, that chain’s gonna peel off the cog and send you over the bars. There’s no way to make these parts work well together.

If price is an issue, get the lowest-end stuff you can find, but make sure you start fresh and let it all wear together.

DO replace your chain in a timely manner. As chains wear, they develop play in their pivots. This play in turn wears your cassette. For details on when to refresh your links, read Chain fu: not for you

DO NOT turn various screws and adjusters willy-nilly. Derailleurs are not complicated, and derailleur makers publish awesome owners’ manuals. Stop the madness: Download your derailleur’s manual, and follow the setup instructions.

SRAM derailleur manuals

Shimano derailleur manuals

OK, that’s it for now.

Just say BRAAAP!

5 replies

Comments are closed.