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DIY! How to Replace a Rivet Type Drive Chain


When replacing a rivet type drive chain that is not a clip joint, it is required to push out the link pin with a drive chain tool.

In this case, only by filing the head of the pin which will be pushed out with a grinder and flattening it, the load on the chain tool is reduced, and the pin is pulled out by light force. During replacement, it is important to pay close attention to the sparks that scatter when using the grinder.

1. To disconnect the seal chain, pushing out the pin link is required.


Not only cutting the old chain but there is also the case of reducing the links to adjust the length of the new chain. It is important for the new chain to cut at the position where the joints can be used after installing it in the motorcycle.

Even performing regular maintenance such as washing and lubrication, the drive chain that transmits the driving force while the metal rubs against each other will require replacement after riding a certain distance. There are two types of connecting methods for chains: the clip joint and the rivet joint. It requires to push out any link pin to cut the rivet type used in the seal chain.

The link pin, which is an important part that connects the chain link, is firmly crimped at both ends so that the chain rotating at high speed does not disassemble, so you need a drive chain tool to remove the pin. There is a rough way to cut the link by using a grinder, but because there is a work to rivet a link pin when connecting the seal chain in a later time if you will work to replace the seal chain by yourself, it is better that you have a drive chain tool at least.

Even if you have a chain tool, you can reduce the load to the tool by by filing off the head of the pin that has been riveted with a grinder instead of cutting the pin with the tool without preparation. Unless a motorcycle shop, there are few riders who change the chain frequently and the idea that a drive chain can be used once is enough, but we want to use the tools with great care.

In order to work comfortably while protecting the tool also, let us add one more task by a grinder.

2. Pin’s head filing is effective to protect the chain tool


When filing the riveting portion of the link pin with a grinder, only the part covered on the outer plate should be filed off. If the pin and the outer plate become the same height, press the pin with the chain tool to separate the chain.

The cutting of the chain is not only the case for removing the old chain from the motorcycle but also the case of adjusting the length like purchasing a 100-link boxed chain for a 98-link motorcycle and cutting two links.

DID / RK chain is available for purchase with 2 link increments in Webike

In the case of adjusting the number of links in a new chain, it is important to determine the cutting position after fixing the chain to the motorcycle installed front and rear sprockets. Especially by changing the number of sprocket teeth, it is important to note that when replacing the chain after increasing the number of teeth on the rear sprocket, it may not be possible to reach both ends of the chain without increasing the number of links.

If the link pin to be cut is determined, the grinder finally appears. Aim the pin’s head with a grinder equipped with a cutting blade, and file the swelling part until it becomes the same height with the outer plate.

Since the sparks scatter splendidly when the blade of the grinder contacts the pin, be careful not to place any flammable materials in the direction of the spark, and keep your eyes to the pin head, and pay attention to where the spark goes. Even if the head of the rivet portion is filed to the same height with the outer plate, it cannot be removed without forcibly pressing with a chain tool because the pin is pressed against the outer plate.

However, by filing off the head of the pin spread on the outer plate, since the force applied to the chain tool when pressing the pin is greatly reduced and the load on the tool is reduced together with the force to turn the handle, tool life is also increased.

3. Perform caulking when installing a new chain.


The length of the chain must be adjusted so that both ends of the chain are the inner plates so that the joint links can be set. Note that the joint link can not fit if it ends with the outer plate.

The grease has been sealed in the gap between all pins and bushes of the seal chain, and when the joint link is set, apply the special grease to the pins and bushes, and prevent leakage with the O-ring inside the outer plate.

The outer plate of the clip joint passes smoothly through the pin, but the outer plate of the rivet joint requires press-fitting the pin on setting. Eventually, since the pin’s head must have to be crimp, a special chain tool is required on replacing the seal chain by yourself.

In case the chain attached before was a seal type, most of the newly installed chains will be also seal type chane, but seal chain sandwiching the rubber O-ring is set by lightly press-fitting the outer plate itself of the joint link.

After press-fitting, so as the joint link plates of outer and inner will be parallel, adjust the width with the adjacent outer plate and then crimp the tip of the pin. In this case also, use a chain tool, but when the amount of riveting is insufficient, there is a risk that the outer plate will come off causing the chain to jump out. When riveting is too much, the width of the outer plate will be narrowed and the friction of the link itself will increase resulting to hinder smooth movement.

In rivetting, it is important how much widen the pin’s head. There is also a case that some of the chain manufacturers specify the approximate dimensions after rivetting and some chain tools have a gauge that allows measuring the caulking amount, so please check carefully.

Click here to purchase a chain tool

4. Pay attention to inflammation and burns

Cutting the chain is simple, but if the joint is a rivet type, you can work without wasting power by filing the head of the link pin. In case you are not used to grinder work, consideration must be given to damage to the motorcycle and fire and burns caused by scattered sparks.

Webike staff

Webike staff

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Webike Moto News Editor

Our mission is to look for unique and valuable news that are from Japan and Asia related to motorcycles and publish to the world. "Webike staff" is name of a team who edit, translate and draft the articles we publish that are brought from all our branches around the world. Not all of our employees ride motorcycle, but find worth living to bring reader say "wow".

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