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Discussion Starter #1
I'm thinking about replacing my chain and sprockets pretty soon.
I just don't know nothing about them. :D [?]
All the numbers like 525,520 or 14,15 tooth confuse me.
Hope someone will kindly explain them to me.
Oh, do different brands make different quality? I notice a lot of you are talking about RK and DID as two of the best ones.
Thanks in advance!
 

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Well I might not be much help but the 520 is the chain size I beleave this is stock. On sprokets I am in the process of gearing mine lower I went 14 teeth in the front stock is 15 and I went 43 in the rear stock is like 40 I think.
 

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The pre-2003 models used a 525 chain, with a 40-tooth rear sprocket. The 2003 model uses a 520 series chain and the same 40-tooth rear sprocket. I am not sure which you ride, but that should at least get you started...

You can't go wrong with DID or RK, but keep in mind both companies sell higher and lower-end chains... You need one that will stand up to sportbike type abuse...

"Keep yer feet on the pegs and your right hand cranked."
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have a 2000 model which I believe has 525 chain, 14 front and 40 rear.
OK, so what difference does convertion from 525 to 520 make?
I know that replacing sprockets with different number of teeth makes difference in acceleration and top end right?
 

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Going down in the front will improve acceleration, reduce top mph speed, decrease gas mileage, increase RPM. Going up in reare sprocket size does the same, but to a lesser extent. (going down 1 in front is a drop of 1/14, going up in back is an effect of 1/40, so, 2-3 up in back is = in effect as 1 down in front)

Going up in front or down in rear has the opposite effect.

A 520 chain is generally lighter/thinner, ditto for sprockets associated with the 520 chain (as compared to a 525 chain). It saves on weight, moving weight. Pickup is improved by a bit, at the cost of chain longevity (I know there are really strong 520 chains available, but generally they don't last as long as 525 chains).

'00 ZX6R silver
 

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To be clear, all ZX-6Rs come with 15/40 gearing. The pre-2003 models come with a size 525 chain, and the 2003 model comes with a size 520 chain.

The first digit in the chain size is the pitch or pin-to-pin distance in eights of an inch. The 525 chain on the pre-2003 models and the 520 chain on the 2003 model share a pitch of 5/8 in. As a result, at 108 links each they have the same length.

The second and third digits are for roller width in eightieths of an inch. The 525 chain on the older models has a width of 25/80 or 5/16 in. The 520 chain on the new model has a width of 20/80 or 1/4 in. As a result, the chain and sprockets on the older models are wider than their new counterparts. Although the gearing and chain length is unchanged, the old sprockets do not fit the new chain.

Check out this picture, which shows the pitch P and the roller width (technically the inner link's inner width) W.



I like the DID 520ERV2 chain on AFAM sprockets.
 

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Rob,
Thanks for the great explanation. Been wondering about it for a while but never bothered looking for an explanation. Good piece of info!!

Let Saddam come and play!
 

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NinjaRider,

In general terms, both 'O Ring' and 'X Ring' are 'O Rings', differing only in the shape of the 'O Ring'. The 'X Ring' type looks a somewhat like the letter 'X' if you cut one and looked directly at the cut end under a microscope. The X shape provides four (4) sealing points, instead of the two (2) provided by the traditional 'O Ring'. This should improve the sealing characteristics, but we'll probably never know for sure. What is very obvious, however, is that the 'X Ring' design greatly reduces the friction or drag at every seal to produce a much more flexible (bendable) chain. A brand new X Ring chain is generally less rigid than an old worn out 'O Ring' chain. This will reduce some of the horsepower loss associated with the much stiffer O-Ring chain.
 

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NinjaRider,

I'm not sure I understand your question, but I can't detect any difference in the longevity. If the advertising is to be believed, the 'X Ring' chain should last longer. In actuality, the maintenance techniques will be the deciding factor. Unfortunately the overwhelming majority of riders don't have a clue about how to maintain their chain.
 

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Originally posted by Dave Leonard
NinjaRider,

I'm not sure I understand your question, but I can't detect any difference in the longevity. If the advertising is to be believed, the 'X Ring' chain should last longer. In actuality, the maintenance techniques will be the deciding factor. Unfortunately the overwhelming majority of riders don't have a clue about how to maintain their chain.


As far as maintenance for a chain goes, I'm going to spread the word of CB360MAN.

If you have an O-ring or X-ring chain, which you most likely do, then you probably only need to lube it every 500 miles. Many people and manuals say that it's every 300 miles, but that's a little much. Well, it actually depends. The first thing you want to look for is dryness. The O-ring is designed to seal lubricants in, that means you wouldn't need to lube it as often or in many places like a standard non-o-ring chain. First, you want to get your bike up on a stand (preferrably) and rotate your rear wheel toward you. When you do it toward you it reverses the rotation of the chain which is necessary for preventing it from kinking because you don't want the chain to constantly go forward only. Then, while you're slowly rolling the wheel look at the chain and check the o-rings. If they're looking dry, then it's time to lube them.

So, do you spray the hell out of your chain? No. If you're using a good o-ring safe chain lube then all you'll need to do is to ooze a little bit of lube on the o-ring itself. If you spray the crap out of your chain while spinning the wheel all you're doing is wasting lube and creating a mess. This is why you get greasy and dirty chains. If you ooze the lube onto the o-rings then you'll be getting the lube to where you need it, you'll have a very clean chain, and your can of lube will last you a while instead of 4-6 months. You'll probably run out of propellants in a year or two before running out of lube, but you'll be saving money in the long run.

So, first you ride your bike for about 15 minutes to guarantee that it's warm (unless you're riding in the cold or rain you might want to use a blow-dryer). Once your chain is warm get it up on the stand immediately and start to slowly ooze the lube onto the o-rings from BEHIND THE SPROCKET. If you do it under the bike facing downward like most people say, you'll waste lube. Just look at the ground when you're done. If you do it at the rear sprocket you'll get just as even a job and anything that is excess will just seethe down onto the next o-ring! When you're done lubing it up be absolutely sure that you wipe off any excess. Excess lube does only one thing - pick up dirt and grime. A bonus when you wipe off the excess is that you leave a thin film of lube on the chain which protects it from rust and other elements and you also won't need to degrease your chain every 1000 miles because it will always been clean. Your degreasing sessions might be every 1500-2000 miles.

Try using this technique, as I have, the next time you lube your chain. Is it a pain in the ass? Yes. Is it worth it? YES. If you find that you can't maintain such a regimen then you can go back to your old methods. I believe you'll be satisfied with the method I described because, in many people's opinion, it's just about perfect.You'll have a clean chain all the time and you can rest assured that you have a properly lubed chain.

By the way, in addition to Rob's post about chain measurements, remember that the first digit is the distance between the exact center of each pin. Just thought I'd add the extra detail.;)

CB360MAN's words of wisdom is followed by all. He had factory chains still on his bikes after 60k - 80k miles and they still looked new and were in great condition, with pictures to prove it all. His passing will be missed for he was a great man of wisdom and a rider. He rode through the heat, snow, storms, and wind. RIP.
 

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Originally posted by Rob Lee
To be clear, all ZX-6Rs come with 15/40 gearing. The pre-2003 models come with a size 525 chain, and the 2003 model comes with a size 520 chain.
I was thinking that picking up an 03/04 chain & sprocket set off ebay could be a cheap way to do a 520 conversion on my 02, but looking at buykawasaki.com, I see identical part numbers for the chain and sprockets on all three years. [:M74]
 
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