Chain information

I have been involved with bicycles most of my life. I have cleaned and serviced chains. Today I decided to learn more about them.

I’m sharing what I found with you.

There are many posts discussing how to deal with different size frames and some suggest longer chains - None say how that is achieved. We have people with different levels of skills and experiences so I thought this is knowledge that we need to share.

I will add to this post and I learn more.

How to make a chain longer

Chain tool -

Eventually I’ll dump this in the wiki

Thank you


Chains are an important part of the Maslow, it will be good to have a collection of information.
Be careful to note the difference between the #25 chain in the stock Maslow and ‘bicycle’ chain, which is subtly different. Some tools made for bicycle chain won’t work with the smaller #25 chain. I think the Topeak Universal Chain Tool might be one of those that works for bicycle chains but not the smaller Maslow chain.


The “made good” chain breaking video shows good practices. If you pop the pin right out, getting it back in is nearly impossible. One thing it doesn’t show is when you reassemble the chain, check to make sure the link is still flexible. If the pin isn’t in it’s ideal position, the link will be stiff and not flex properly. You might need to push the pin in a tiny bit further or put the tool on the other way around and push the pin back a little. I’ve had that before on bicycles.


A long time ago I’d put my CB160 chain in a pan full of car wheel bearing grease and bake it in the oven for a couple hours and let it cool. Don’t remember what temp. Shortened it quite a bit, but it was seriously worn and I was too poor to buy a new one.

Undoubtedly a fire hazard and if you have a SO not good for domestic bliss, but the article mentions hot soaking. Coffee can (metal, not these newfangled plastic ones), hot plate, and oil could work. Do it outside a long way from flammables, not in your kitchen oven like I did. The old mobile home would have been gone in 60 seconds if the grease had cought fire.


I saw this scroll by in a Notice and saw “CB160”

The number of bikes over the years - but I think the most fun were all “CB” something. If it has 1 good wheel I can ride it. I’ve been on all kinds of bikes but of all the choices in the world I’d take a 80’s CB750 or CB900 Custom. My last one was a CB1000 Custom, 10 speed transmission ( over / under drive) , I was looking for a CB500 and instead found a $500 1980 CB1000 - I got it for $480, with a jacket, helmet, bike cover and battery charger. Not totally related because the CB900/1000 uses a transverse jack shaft and has a shaft drive system, but the 750 is all chain. I’m an old school racer and used to ride a 1972 CB750 to work, bike strait up and down through a canyon to work, I was hanging off the sides sidehack style in the corners. Modern riders had no idea if I was crazy or what. The fork rake angel on the 72 was awful for hair pin turns. Still a dam fun bike.

Thank you

Had a used 1965 (+/-) model in my wild younger days, surprised i’m still around after how many times I crashed it. Somebody stole it out if a carport in Texas around 73 or so.

It had nearly bald knobbies and straight pipes with snuffer nuts, PO did a sorta dirt bike conversion. Got stuck in the woods a lot, got a few stitches and some dirt embedded scars, balanced grocery bags on the tank riding home, had a lot of fun. Now I’m nearly bald and too sensible to ride like that anymore

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I rode the used 72 until I had a quarter sized bald spot showing the steel belt. When I got the new rear tire they warned me the new tire would be slippery. I laughed because the old one had become a slick. I’m old enough to know better but I’d jump on a bike any day. It’s nice to be old enough to have a choice.

Thank you

anyone using stainless steel chain? I imagine it would be much stronger than the standard chain and wouldn’t rust for those using their machine is environments where rush is an issue.

chinese stainless chian $6/ft
Kind of expensive though!

edited to add, best price is on ebay 10 feet of #25 stainless chain for $39

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that doesn’t look stronger than standard chain, but it would avoid the rust
issue and so last longer, I’ll have to look into it.

but it’s still pricy, $40 per 10 ft (22-25 ft needed for a Maslow), vs standard
chain that is <$100 per 100 ft

David Lang

stainless steel is stronger than carbon steel I think? but maybe the carbon steel is heat treated? Main reason I mention it is several posts say they do not have room for the machine in side and this would make it outside durable if used with a metal frame.

I believe that the standard chain is stainless. We went with the nicest stuff we could find at a reasonable price. Has anyone seen it rust? Mine has been inside always, but I would have expected to see at least some surface rust if it weren’t stainless

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The ‘magnet test’ is inconclusive, it’s attracted.


My chains rusted here in humid Florida. I should’ve had them covered when I covered the motors.

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the chains I received were def not stainless.

They haven’t rusted per say but for sure have developed some minor surface corrosion and with a wipe down of oil the resulting liquid is clearly a reddish color.

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Most roller chain breakers have their distinct design and precision features to make a mechanic or bike owner’s life easier. Know the way how they are used to understand installing or repairing chain sets the right way. Good timing in twisting it, getting the pin out, and adding the link and pin is crucial. The same is needed for a new or replacement chain set that will effectively add or replace chain links.

These roller chain breaker tool sets are:
Hand-held Roller Chain Breakers
Stationary Roller Chain Breakers
Hydraulic Pump Chain Breakers