Author Topic: 9spd-10spd chains  (Read 957 times)

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Offline SlowAndSlower

9spd-10spd chains
« on: February 12, 2014, 07:41:33 pm »
On another thread the subject of chain strength came up. Not to hijack the thread I pose my question here. Is there any definitive proof that a 9 spd chain is stronger then a 10 spd or that it wears longer than a 10spd chain?

As I understand it the 10spd chain is narrower but what other dimensions change? AFAIK everything is pretty much the same except the pins and rollers length. So I am stymied as to how the 10 spd chain would be weaker or wear less. Now if the plates were thinner or pins smaller I could begin to understand.

Just curouis.

Offline Cyclesafe

Re: 9spd-10spd chains
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2014, 08:27:42 pm »
No proof, but I would submit that properly cared for 10 sp chain will outlast a neglected 9 sp.  Just sayin'.
Hoping to do the North Star with ACA in 2014.

Offline staehpj1

Re: 9spd-10spd chains
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2014, 06:20:18 am »
I am pretty sure the side plates and pin diameter are the same so as far as I can tell the only disadvantage 10-spds have is narrower bearing surfaces.  So yeah they probably wear a little faster, but are just as strong.  That said I think they are fine.

BTW, I suspect that most chains could do better with more neglect, at least when it comes to cleaning.  I think folks kill their chains with kindness about as often as they do with neglect.  Aggressive cleaning with solvents or detergents helps abrasive grit get deeper into the chain and kills the lube there.  Frequent lubing and wiping down is good, frequent more aggressive cleaning is not good IMO.  I clean as infrequently as I can and use the least aggressive method that I can get by with.  That means only applying and wiping off lube the large majority of the time.  If the chain is muddy a rinse with plain water and as little pressure as possible is the way I go.  Once in a while when the chain gets very sandy I resort to a good spraying down with WD40 before relubing.  That has given me over 10K miles on most chains before 12 links measure 12-1/16 inches and I replace them.

Offline DaveB

Re: 9spd-10spd chains
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2014, 08:53:19 am »
10-speed chains have slightly thinner side plates along with shorter pins to narrow them compared to 9-speed chains.  However, most makers have compensated by using stronger alloys and better heat treatment so the overall durability is about the same.  In my experience 9 and 10-speed chains, given the same care (or neglect) and ridden under the same circumstances, last equally long. 

Offline DoubleD

Re: 9spd-10spd chains
« Reply #4 on: February 27, 2014, 01:17:01 pm »
The only time I have broken a chain was the result of seeing how high a gear I could climb a hill with while carrying a load.  In other words, testosterone overload more than likely.  Since that side of the road debacle I have learned to use lower gears and preserve my chains.  I have never broken a chain since. 

Offline DaveB

Re: 9spd-10spd chains
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2014, 09:24:53 pm »
The only time I have broken a chain was the result of seeing how high a gear I could climb a hill with while carrying a load.  In other words, testosterone overload more than likely.  Since that side of the road debacle I have learned to use lower gears and preserve my chains.  I have never broken a chain since.
Even at that did the sideplate crack or did you just pull out a pin?  Most chain failures are from improperly installed special joining pins or, more commonly, from reusing a standard pin on a narrow (8-speed and above) chain.  Sideplate failures are very rare and usually are the result of corrosion or chemical attack from poor cleaning methods.

I certainly agree with staehpj1 that more chains are ruined by aggressive cleaning methods than by neglect.  Particularly harmful is soaking the chain in water based degreaser.  Unless you thoroughly rinse out all of the detergent and completely dry ALL of the water out of the interior the new chainlube will never go where it's needed.

Offline DoubleD

Re: 9spd-10spd chains
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2014, 02:24:02 am »
The only time I have broken a chain was the result of seeing how high a gear I could climb a hill with while carrying a load.  In other words, testosterone overload more than likely.  Since that side of the road debacle I have learned to use lower gears and preserve my chains.  I have never broken a chain since.
Even at that did the sideplate crack or did you just pull out a pin?  Most chain failures are from improperly installed special joining pins or, more commonly, from reusing a standard pin on a narrow (8-speed and above) chain.  Sideplate failures are very rare and usually are the result of corrosion or chemical attack from poor cleaning methods.

I certainly agree with staehpj1 that more chains are ruined by aggressive cleaning methods than by neglect.  Particularly harmful is soaking the chain in water based degreaser.  Unless you thoroughly rinse out all of the detergent and completely dry ALL of the water out of the interior the new chainlube will never go where it's needed.

I don't recall what caused the break but do now love my chains enough to set them free and not coddle them.  The occasional wipe when they begin to look chunky from funk and a good soaking with lube.  They are ugly but happy.

Offline zerodish

Re: 9spd-10spd chains
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2014, 09:08:51 am »
If you are really interested in this topic research the engineering definition of toughness. Toughness is defined by how much energy a part can absorb before failure. So a 9 speed chain with thicker plates and weaker steel in tension could absorb more energy than a 10 speed chain with thinner plates and higher tensile strength steel. Few chain makers will use their highest strength steel in their 9 speed chains.