Longevity of parts

theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
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#1
I have been riding for a little less than a year on my bike.

I changed the chain recently and found that the old one had stretched about 6-8mm

Yesterday I changed the rear cassette and now once again have a silent bike.

All the creaks and ticks and bad changing must have been sprocket related.:eek:
I was a little surprised in the difference.
Does the cassette twist or something?

Anyway just curios as to how often others change their gear?
 

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,502
1,146
433
Miura, Japan
#4
That's true, but I'd be surprised to find a cassette worn out after just a year of use unless the rider is really into grinding (and even then it would only be one or two gears). My steel bike has a 2006 Tiagra cassette that's seen more than 40,000 km and has no issues.
6-8mm seems like a lot of stretch - regardless of miles.

My impression has always been around 3 you change chains.
Above 4mm you are going to damage the drive train.

So when i hear 8mm - I am not thinking miles, but 'wear' - or into old horror movies.

With a screen name like 'theBlob' - I assume he is a 'clydesdale' class rider like I am. Easy to mash and stress your gear.
 

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,502
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433
Miura, Japan
#6
I really don't know - Never met him.

But the screen name lended me to believe he could be tough on a drivetrain.
Hope he is not insulted - but at least I put him in the same category as myself with regards to drivechain abuse.

Maybe he should change his screen name to 'Sexy Beast' so I don't make the mistake again. :confused:
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#7
The lighter you go, the faster it wears out. Mainly because there is less steel in the parts and more lightweight alloys, or just less of everything. Combine that with regular riding and stuff just wears out.

There is no reason to change the chain and cassette together. Chains will stretch long before the cassette is worn (or chainring). Just make sure you change the chain before it's too stretched out and actually CAUSES excessive wear on the other parts. Some gear combos will wear faster than others because the chain links ride exactly the same position on them.

I find bearings wear out pretty quickly, too. Headset, BB, wheel, etc. Depends on the environment and the amount of use.

The old bikes used steel cup / cone bearings with steel balls. They actually become harder and spin better with age - as long as they are maintained. My old Campy SR group from the late 70's has never even had the balls replaced! I just tear it down, clean and repack with Phil Wood or Campy grease. My Regina freewheels from the 70's have also never been replaced. But I went through ALOT of chains! (Sedisport, mainly) Campy brake cables last forever - sadly the current ones are no way as good. But all that old stuff is MUCH heavier than the newer.

Plus - how you ride the bike has alot to do with longevity. if you are hard on the gear changes especially - changing up or down under severe load or sprint, you will break stuff and wear it out more quickly. Just because it will shift doesn't mean it's necessarily good for it. Learning to ride with some 'finesse' will go a long ways to keeping your gear lasting longer.

As an FYI I have installed my last 2 chains as Dura Ace. Both are wearing (stretched) about 2x as fast as the Ultegra chain. Supposedly Shimano has upgraded the DA chains in this year to be better wearing. I'll have to wait for the next change up to determine that. The 105 and 10sp Tiagra stuff has geneally been darn reliable. With the exception of the brifters, which it seems for just about every maker , are prone to early failure and wearing out. (Except the first version DA 10 speeds)

Heavy or powerful riders will wear out stuff faster - and especially stretch chains. An easy way to test your chain is simply put the chain into your biggest gearing (BIG Front/ Little Back) then pinch the chain at the front of the chainring and pull gently. If the chain is not seating properly on the chain ring (stretched) it will lift off the teeth slightly. You can do this check quickly anytime - so just make a habit of it.
 

Doug3

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Jun 24, 2010
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Setagaya
www.tokyocyclingcoach.com
#8
What kind of maintenance did you perform on the drivetrain in the past year? The creaking, groaning and grinding noises I heard a couple of weeks ago would seem to indicate more than just a stretched chain from being that awesomely powerful rider that you are. (meant in a nice way ;))
 

theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
2,862
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129
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#9
Well, I kept it reasonably clean (dismantle, clean and reassemble), except when I was going through my "hearing it creak lets me know when I am spinning properly" phase.

Still I was a bit surprised at the bliss I was experiencing with all my new gear on. I only changed the chain on Saturday and the new chain quietened things down a bit, but the new sprocket was where the biggest change happened, almost back to a new bike, in shifting feel and noise.

Anyway shiny is good! New is good! But working properly is best!:bike:
 

Forsbrook

Maximum Pace
Feb 13, 2008
399
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Katsushika-ku
#10
How long on average do the wheels on the rear derailleur last for?
I always change out the chain,rear cassette,etc,but I've never changed the little wheels on my XT derailleur.Is this detrimental to my drivetrain?I'm not a speed merchant just a commuter/tourist.
 

jdd

Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
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Kanazawa
#11
With yearly ultegra chain changes (usually about 5-6000km), I had an ultegra cassette last six years (and then discarded).

This year, with some new wheels and a new DA cassette and DA chain, on cleanup and reinstall I've had some creaking in the cassette that I never had before.

Everything's new enough that age shouldn't be a problem, so I think it's my lube/reinstall/tightening of the cassette that's to blame. It comes and goes, even on the same ride--maybe quiet at first, then 20 minutes of a bit of noise that's just above ignorable, and then silence for an hour. And then (maybe) back.

Side note: With the new stuff, the front was creaking/grinding, and I replaced my middle ring (triple) and the noise disappeared. So at the start of this bike's 7th season, one chain ring needed replacing.

on edit: I replace the derailleur pulley wheels every other year. (given my mileage, above)
 

jdd

Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
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Kanazawa
#12
How long on average do the wheels on the rear derailleur last for?
I always change out the chain,rear cassette,etc,but I've never changed the little wheels on my XT derailleur.Is this detrimental to my drivetrain?I'm not a speed merchant just a commuter/tourist.
XT is pretty bullet-proof. Swap for new pulley wheels if you want, but you could also wait forever...
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
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103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#14
The plastic / bushing types will last a very long time. Usually they will build up layers of muck and grease, though. So it's good to keep them clean. When they do where out the shifting will feel mushy and imprecise. However on bikes that are equally worn out or not serviced, I'd say these are on the lower end of the required service.

High end jockey wheels come in alloy and also may feature ceramic bearings. The alloy wheels won't last as long as the plastic ones, but they shift a little faster and overall drag reduction due to the bearings is a little better. Dura Ace uses a ceramic bearing in one of the pulleys and std bushing in the other (go figure) , probably to keep costs down. They are great pulleys, though, and hardly ever need replacing. I use the alloy ones w/ceramics simply because I like the slightly crisper shifting - it's a pretty cheap upgrade for an Ultegra RD..


How long on average do the wheels on the rear derailleur last for?
I always change out the chain,rear cassette,etc,but I've never changed the little wheels on my XT derailleur.Is this detrimental to my drivetrain?I'm not a speed merchant just a commuter/tourist.
 

Forsbrook

Maximum Pace
Feb 13, 2008
399
64
48
Katsushika-ku
#15
The plastic / bushing types will last a very long time. Usually they will build up layers of muck and grease, though. So it's good to keep them clean. When they do where out the shifting will feel mushy and imprecise. However on bikes that are equally worn out or not serviced, I'd say these are on the lower end of the required service.

High end jockey wheels come in alloy and also may feature ceramic bearings. The alloy wheels won't last as long as the plastic ones, but they shift a little faster and overall drag reduction due to the bearings is a little better. Dura Ace uses a ceramic bearing in one of the pulleys and std bushing in the other (go figure) , probably to keep costs down. They are great pulleys, though, and hardly ever need replacing. I use the alloy ones w/ceramics simply because I like the slightly crisper shifting - it's a pretty cheap upgrade for an Ultegra RD..
Thanks for that.
I make an effort to clean them when I clean my drivetrain but I will definetly
bear in mind the "feel mushy and imprecise" comment in mind.
 

FarEast

Maximum Pace
May 25, 2009
5,528
538
193
Yokohama
#16
The great thing about 105 through to Dura Ace is that you can remove the Jockey/Pulley wheels. I pop mine out everytime I wash the bike as there is absolutely no point in giving the chain and chain rings a good clean only to put crap back on them from the Jockey/Pulley wheels.