Favorite chain and sprocket brands?

Discussion in 'Tech Forum' started by bmart, Sep 15, 2018.

  1. bmart

    bmart Control Rider

    Hey all,

    I'm going to give in at the season's end and finally replace the stock chain on the A bike (2003 R6). It still has the lightweight (chuckle) DID ZLV 532 on it. I run steel sprockets to keep wear and costs down. Front still has no wear 15k miles later and it gets a rear sprocket every 5k-6k due to wear (Renthal Ultralite until they became unavailable). There is something to be said for heavy duty/big chains and a low budget!

    Likely going to a 520 (I'm not sure there is an advantage to go with a 525, but I'd like to hear opinions) as strength and durability have come a long way since 2003. What brand/model chains last the longest, and from which re-sellers can I pickup a chain/steel sprocket set on the cheap. Light weight isn't important to me, but longevity and reliability are.

    Thanks all!
     
  2. vinny337

    vinny337 Vin is in...Beastmode! Control Rider

    Nice! You definitely got your monies worth out of that. I use Vortex sprockets with the 520 conversion chain, although I have tried a steel sprocket, it was just really heavy.
     
  3. bmart

    bmart Control Rider

    It is pretty hard to wear out a 532...no matter what you're using it for!
     
  4. vinny337

    vinny337 Vin is in...Beastmode! Control Rider

    You have a point there. :cool:
     
  5. bmart

    bmart Control Rider

    I was dong some research (on our site) and it seems that some folks with aluminum sprockets are replacing chain/sprockets every season. If that is the 520 option, I'm gong to stick with a 530. There sure are a lot of options between manufacturers, models and materials for chains and sprockets. I used to use Tsubaki exclusively, but it seems that they're odd man out these days, with Vortex, Driven, JT, RK, and DID as the most common.
     
  6. mpusch

    mpusch Micah

    Renthal sprockets and DID Erv3 chain from Riders Discount.

    I've put about 20 trackdays and races on my Daytona with them and they're still in good shape.
     
  7. Menotomy

    Menotomy World's Okayest Rider

    The 520 conversion is popular because there is an abundance of options. Maybe that's changing, but from what I've seen you have the biggest selection of sprockets and chains with the 520 pitch. No idea why, just the way it is. Still plenty of options with other sizes as you have noted.

    From what you read in your research, are they replacing the chain and sprockets because they had to, or just out of preference? Vortex Aluminum sprockets will barely make a season, depending on your riding style and bike. For example, my aluminum Vortex rear sprocket has lasted all season and still has a ways to go, but Anthony Sabbatino's got worn out 3/4 through the season. We both did about the same number of track days and races this season. But Vortex also makes steel sprockets if you don't care about the sprocket being heavier, and they will last a lot longer. Superlite is another popular brand, and I think they make an aluminum body with steel teeth. They are expensive though.

    I'm using a DID chain with 520 pitch and I've been using it for two seasons, but it has also been on an SV. It's probably ready to be replaced though.
     
    vinny337 likes this.
  8. vinny337

    vinny337 Vin is in...Beastmode! Control Rider

    I'm on a liter bike now and I change my chain every year whether it needs it or not, cheap in investment. I also go through a couple of sprockets each season and that's with changing gearing for the different tracks I ride. Chris kind of touched spoke on it, going to depend on what bike and how hard you're riding. :cool:
     
  9. MrFrzz

    MrFrzz slow and wide

    Good thread to start Brad, as I'm going to be doing a 520 conversion on my 09 CBR, not out of necessity, but planning ahead. I've been back and forth about going with a supersprox stealth aluminum sprocket with the steel outer ring, but I think I'm gonna stick with a steel vortex and go -1 up on the front sprocket.

    I know the industries can't be further apart, but we used tsubaki chains for a while in the coal industry for some of the conveyor chains, and we just didnt get the kind of wear we wanted out of them. So I guess that's kind of put a bad taste in my mouth.

    In any case, I'm looking at a vortex v3 2. 520rx3 chain because it has a higher average tensile strength than RK chains, but I'd have to compare that to d.i.d. chains to make a final call I guess. Just gonna stick with steel sprockets as mentioned above. I'm not at a point right now where that hardware change is gonna make a noticeable difference. I'm still in the software development stages. ;)
     
  10. MrFrzz

    MrFrzz slow and wide

    have you noticed the 520 stretching at all by the end of the season on the big bike??
     
  11. vinny337

    vinny337 Vin is in...Beastmode! Control Rider

    I've only noticed some stretching from using a new chain, I'll make a few adjustment during the day but at the end of the day the chain is good to go.
     
  12. Motofun352

    Motofun352 Control Rider

    DID 520 with Renthal rear sprockets....no complaints and good service on a 750.
     
  13. MrFrzz

    MrFrzz slow and wide

    you got too much pawr ;)
     
    vinny337 likes this.
  14. bmart

    bmart Control Rider

    There does seem to be an initial stretch and then (crickets...) nothing. What seems to be that case is that folks who use the aluminum sprocket go through a sprocket or two a year. Folks who have maladjusted chains go through chain/sprockets every year. :p I like the idea of the 520 with steel, as it'll last 3-4 years and require nothing other than (I won't dare tell you how I keep them clean and lubed!).

    I'll post up what I find out. I have some notes into resellers and manufacturers.
     
  15. MrFrzz

    MrFrzz slow and wide

    I probably dont follow the best practices for my chain. I clean with WD40 and lube with maxima or Honda lube... whatever is in the shed right now lol
     
  16. bmart

    bmart Control Rider

    My best results are with WD-40 or PB Blaster and wipe it off after. I've tried many specialty lubes over the years and they seem to work worse and make more of a mess than anything. They are prelubed for the life of the chain. All that you're really doing is keeping the grit out so that it doesn't damage the rubber rings or get between the chain and sprocket surfaces, and keeping rust from forming. I normally get 20k out of a street chain without issue and this track chain is at 15k and well within spec.
     
  17. Menotomy

    Menotomy World's Okayest Rider

    PB Blaster? That's a new one, though it's not too far off from WD-40 which is really popular. Personally, and this gets argued almost as much as what the best motor oil is, I advise against using penetrating lubricants. The reason being in the name, they penetrate, and are meant to displace water. Whether or not they actually can penetrate the o-rings and displace the grease that the rings are sealing in has been well debated. I'm not saying it happens, but it's enough risk for me that I avoid it. Especially when there are so many products out there that are designed to work with the chain.

    The method I've always used is either a motorcycle chain specific degreaser, or kerosene. The nice thing about the degreaser is you can just spray it everywhere around the wheel and do some scrubbing and you have it back to showroom. I avoid doing that with kerosene, especially if it gets on a tire. It's kind of slippery but does evaporate. And it would give me a headache. For lubricant I use the Teflon Chain saver spray. I love that stuff and you can buy it anywhere. I wipe off excess after I let it dry a little bit. At the track I'll also clean the chain a little by coating the chain, wiping it all off, then putting on another coat and only wipe off the sides/sprocket. That removes the dirt and creates a barrier against water, which as you said is important, plus it's a lubricant so it helps lower friction on the o-rings.
     
  18. HondaGalToo

    HondaGalToo Control Rider

    I've been using Driven sprockets and an RK GXW chain. Motomummy has a good price on a combo set with the Driven sprockets, with the option to select whichever chain you want. The price varies depending on chain choice.
     
  19. vinny337

    vinny337 Vin is in...Beastmode! Control Rider

    Yeah PB Blaster is a new one for me too... Hey whatever works for you. :like:
     
  20. bmart

    bmart Control Rider

    It helps to rinse off the grit and is "safe" for rubber O-rings. And CHEAP! Been using it for many years with great results.
     
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