How To Count Bicycle Chain Links?

The bike chain plays an important role in the overall performance of a bicycle. This is what makes it important for all cyclists to regularly maintain and lubricate their bike chains along with regularly cleaning their bike chains. Apart from maintaining the bike chain, it is nice to know the number of chain links on the bike. So, how to count bicycle chain links?

Counting the number of chain links on a bike chain is fairly straightforward. Starting off you need secure the bike, and then mark a one-chain link with a marker or pencil. This is the starting point. And then start counting the outside links. The outside links are the ones with a metal plate. Once finished counting you need to multiply the links you counted by two. That is the total links.

In this post, we will go through how to count bicycle chain links. Let’s get started!

Read more on common questions asked

How Does A Bike Chain Work?

The function of a bike chain is that the chain transfers power from the pedals to the wheels of a bicycle, thus creating forward movement. Each chain link is held together by a steel pin. By using a chain tool, will remove and place the pins in or out of the chain.

The spacing from link to link fits precisely with the teeth on the sprockets, this is what creates the forward movement when pedaling.

How To Count Bicycle Chain Links?

Counting the number of chain links on a bike chain is fairly straightforward. This can be done in a number of steps. These are as follows.

  • The first step is to secure your bike, it is easier to count the chain links. Place your bike into a bike stand. The bike stand is useful as it securely holds up your bike and prevents damage to the bike and the surrounding area if the bike falls down.
  • Next, we need a starting point so you need to mark a chain link. Otherwise, you may lose count or place as the chain links look the same. Just mark the chain link with a mark from a pencil, marker, or something else.
  • Now just count the outside links. Remember that the outside links are identified by the large plates.
bike chain
  • Once you are finished counting the links, you need to multiply the links you counted by two. So if you count 60 outer links, then the total links are 120 total links. This is because the outer links can only attach to inner links. There are always an even number of links.
  • That’s it, you are done.

Are Bike Chains Universal?

No, there are different sizes of bike chains depending on a number of factors such as the number of sprockets, the distance between the front chainring and rear cogs, and speeds.

Most modern bike chains are made to the one-half-inch pitch, but this does not mean all chains fit all bikes.

How Do I Know If My Chain Is Too Long?

The problem with a bike chain that is too long or loose will cause the chain to slip off. And this will affect changing the gears cause the dérailleur does not have enough capacity to pick up the slack with the chain being too long.

There are a number of reasons for this. These are as follows.

  • Got a new chain and it’s the wrong size.
  • Your crank tooth needs to be replaced.
  • Your front and rear derailleur are not properly aligned.
  • The chainring, derailleur, or the chainring are damaged.

Do You Need A Chain Guard On A Bicycle?

It is not necessary to install a chain guard on your bike. In saying that if you are commuting to work it could be useful to have a chain guard in to protect your trousers and shoelaces from getting caught on the chain or the gears.

Wrapping Up

Finally, counting the number of chain links on a bike chain is fairly straightforward. Starting off you need secure the bike, and then mark a one-chain link with a marker or pencil. This is the starting point. And then start counting the outside links. The outside links are the ones with a metal plate. Once finished counting you need to multiply the links you counted by two. That is the total links.

And that’s it for now! I’d love it if this post on how to count bicycle chain links was helpful to you. Let me know if you have any questions and let me know if there is more to add.

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How To Count Bicycle Chain Links