Stumped - Chain and Sprocket change - Red Dust

linus

Member
Hello All

I have an issue that I am trying to figure out and could use your assistance.

Problem
The chain is wearing down after replacement (this is a new chain and sprockets).

Symptoms (after 400 miles)
Lots of red dust
3 difficult\seized links in the chain
Chain stretch up to 3 inches

Background
Had the FZ6 chain and sprockets chained by my mechanic at 30K. There was no visible issues with the original one but wanted to perform a preventative maintenance.
Not sure what brand the mechanic used.
After 400 miles the red dust got more prominent and the chain started to stretch.
I lubed the chain every 200 miles but the chain continued to deteriorate. Even changed the chain lube to a different brand. Its the came one that I was using all along.
Took the bike back to the mechanic who said this was not normal and replaced the chain and sprocket under warranty with the DID brand which I had recommended.
After another 400 miles the same problem persisted (red dust, seized links, stretching, even after regular lubing)

Thoughts
Incorrect\inferior chain
Rust from some other place on the bike getting on the chain (cant seem to find any though)
Bike is parked indoors. Dont ride in the rain. Weekend rider.
Regular lube regiment
No problem with OEM chain

Here is the kicker though. My buddy had his chain replaced by the same mechanic with the same issues. Also an FZ6. Leads me to believe that the chain is the issue here.

Please feel free to offer up your advise as both the mechanic and I are stumped. I have been using this mechanic for the last year or so and is honest and reliable. He might be getting short changed with his parts though.
 

Gary in NJ

Junior Member
Site Supporter
There is no way the chain stretched 3 inches. Did you mean to type .3? Even 0.3 inches is a life time of wear. Red is rust or clay. If you don’t regularly ride on clay roads, then it’s rust.

Roller chains rust both externally and when they fail, internally. Typically o-ring or x-ring chains do not rust internally. It would take failure of the rings and even then they do a good job of keeping water out unless you are cleaning the chain with a power washer.

You may have paid for a DID o-ring chain...but did you actually get one? If you remove the master link and there aren’t any o-rings under the plates (4 rings) then it’s a roller chain.
 

Andz

Phantom Rider
Elite Member
Seems weird, I did over 50,000km with the original chain then changed to a DID gold X-ring chain with new sprockets and after 2 years of admittedly not big mileage I haven't had to adjust it yet. I am not the best at lube either. I use Bel-Ray lube when I remember.


If you remove the master link and there aren’t any o-rings under the plates (4 rings) then it’s a roller chain.
Sorry, what? Master link? I haven't seen one of those since my Suzuki AC50 in the 1970s. Today it should be an endless chain.
 

Gary in NJ

Junior Member
Site Supporter
Seems weird, I did over 50,000km with the original chain then changed to a DID gold X-ring chain with new sprockets and after 2 years of admittedly not big mileage I haven't had to adjust it yet. I am not the best at lube either. I use Bel-Ray lube when I remember.




Sorry, what? Master link? I haven't seen one of those since my Suzuki AC50 in the 1970s. Today it should be an endless chain.
Not true at all. First off, all chains have a master link. I think you are referring to a rivited master vs a clipped master. I still use clipped master links on all of my bikes because I like to remove my chain once a year and soak them in kerosene. As long as you use a new clip there is no danger in using a clipped master. For added safety, I also safety wire my clips to the outer plate.

To the OP, if you have a rivited master link, you can still check between the plates and the link for o-rings. They should be just as visible as the other links.
 
Last edited:

trepetti

It's all good!
Elite Member
Site Supporter
Not true at all. First off, all chains have a master link. I think you are referring to a rivited master vs a clipped master. I still use clipped master links on all of my bikes because I like to remove my chain once a year and soak them in kerosene. As long as you use a new clip there is no danger in using a clipped master. For added safety, I also safety wire my clips to the outer plate.

To the OP, if you have a riveted master link, you can still check between the plates and the link for o-rings. They should be just as visible as the other links.

Hey Gary, re: soaking the chain in kerosene. I pulled my chain this winter with the intent of doing a really thorough cleaning before spring. I have a DID and was under the impression that soaking the chain would allow kerosene to seep past the x rings and dissolve the grease in the rollers. Do you have any advice on soaking without causing any problems?

Thanks
 

Gary in NJ

Junior Member
Site Supporter
I soak my o-ring chains. Depending on the amount of grime it could be over night or a few days. The kerosene will not get past the o-rings. All of the grime will come off the chain simply by wiping it with a rag.

If the kerosene gets past the o or x rings it’s because the rings have failed and the chain was going to fail/get stiff in time anyway.
 

Motogiro

Vrrroooooom!
Super Moderator
Moderator
Elite Member
Also: The complaint of a stretched chain in so little miles makes me think you have a person who is not setting chain slack to spec on the FZ6. I've seen this multiple times and the hack tells the customer the chain will stretch. Chains and bearing wear prematurely because you have someone who is not qualified to work on any vehicles (maybe wash em?) and not set the chain to the specification. This can also lead to injury and death. You'll also find people wash your bike and apply silicone tire shine to your rubber.
Please be careful and watchful when it comes to your bike.
 
Last edited:

TownsendsFJR1300

2007 FZ6
Site Supporter
Just to clarify, there ARE chains W/O a master link/riveted link. The stock Yamaha chain is such-continuous and requires the swingarm partial removal to thread the Yamaha chain back on..

Re the cleaning the chain. I wouldn't remove / re-install/soak the chain. Just way too much to do when better results can be obtained using a specific chain cleaner. I use Maxima chain cleaner (MC specific): https://www.maximausa.com/product/clean-up/ . I'll use it 2-3 times a year, tops along with a grunge brush (aluminum version). The chain/sprockets are spotless of all crap and ready for lube.

Re the Op's chain. Agreed that red is rust. The chain doesn't sound like it's an O-ringed chain but in any event, the chain must be adjusted properly. MANY mechanic's tighten the chain way too tight. The FZ requires "up and down play" approx. 2" (@ the tightest part of the chain) .

This is easily checked putting the bike on the CC, finding the tightest spot and simply pushing the chain up and down.

Lastly, chain wax IME is junk and should be avoided. I tried it on another bike years ago and had RUST coming from the rollers. Stick with a petroleum based lube. I use the below pictured lube which sticks very well and holds up the best I've tried. I do lube the chain way more than required (approx. 200 miles) and it shows..







Re-check the tightness of the chain and if using wax, pitch it..
 

linus

Member
Thanks all.

To clarify, the chain slack is 3 inches after 400 miles or so. The chain slack was tight to begin with, less than .5 of an inch. This might be causing the issues as stated above or an inferior chain itself.

I have been using the Honda pro chain lube all along.

Apart from seeing that the chain was unpacked from the original packing I have no way of confirming that it maybe an inferior product.
 

bigborer

Member
Improper chain slack will VERY quickly wear out a chain. I once was too laze to adjust it before a weekend trip and left it as it was- on the looser end of slack specs and at about 50% between the "new" and "replace" markers . About 800 (hard) kms later, I stopped for gas and noticed the chain got so stretched that I could have taken it off by hand. Needless to say after seeing that I rode home slower than anything on the road.
 

Motogiro

Vrrroooooom!
Super Moderator
Moderator
Elite Member
Thanks all.

To clarify, the chain slack is 3 inches after 400 miles or so. The chain slack was tight to begin with, less than .5 of an inch. This might be causing the issues as stated above or an inferior chain itself.

I have been using the Honda pro chain lube all along.

Apart from seeing that the chain was unpacked from the original packing I have no way of confirming that it maybe an inferior product.
If you've started with .5 chain slack you need to stay away from this person.
 

TownsendsFJR1300

2007 FZ6
Site Supporter
Plus 1 ^^^…

That chain is toast now. Hopefully the engine output bearing isn't torn up..

Pitch it, start anew but with a new mechanic.

Might want to read the owners manual, this is very basic stuff you can check..
 

FinalImpact

2 Da Street, Knobs R Gone
Super Moderator
Site Supporter
33,000 miles on the OEM chain and its like new. Many lubricants claim to last 500 mi but they don't. More often is better.

Chains are not piano strings! They are least happy when taunt. Slack and lubrication keep them alive. The arc of the swing arm TIGHTENS the chain as the suspension goes to ride height. Ignoring the service spec will kill any chain and bind the suspension.

Just me but I would never ever soak an O-ring chain in solvent!!! It will go past the orings and displace the lube. Then even if dried, there is no guarantee the lubricant goes back in.

Would I do this to a none o-ring chain? Yes.

Like Scott said, a good cleaner, a grunge brush, wipe it down when done and lube it throughly. Hence my chain lasting 30,xxx miles.
 
Top