Respect the Chain


The chain is arguably the most important part of any bike.  Tubes and tires can easily be patched or fixed while riding.  Broken spokes still allow you to get back home.  Busted cables might make things a little difficult, but you’re still able to ride.  But break or damage a chain while on the road, and most times you’ll need to make an emergency call for someone to pick you up.

Yeah, unless you carry a chain tool and know how to fix it…..a busted chain can definitely mean the end of a ride.  Even worse…..a fall.

In all my years of riding, I’ve never had any major chain issues.  That is, until recently.  I was well over the 1,000ish miles recommended for replacing a chain but just kept pushing it off.  It hadn’t been slipping or giving me any trouble so I just kept riding.  Wrong move.

One day while doing the 27% grade climb to my house, my chain slipped off.  When it’s that steep there is zero reaction time.  The bike stops instantly.  It caught me off guard, and I was laying on the ground before I knew it.  A harmless fall…this time (yeah, I did actually crack my arm once with a 0 mph fall).

The next day I planned on replacing the chain once I got to work, but still set off for a ride before heading in. Big mistake.  About 3 miles into my ride, one of the links bent slightly and wouldn’t move past the derailer.  I was grounded.  For the first time ever, I needed to have my Wife come pick me up.

So I’m here to tell you to respect your chain.  Keep an eye on it.  Follow these tips on how to tell if your chain needs replacing.  If you’ve ridden between 800 and 1,400 miles (depending on what chain you have), replace it.

#MakeitHappen.  Enjoy Your Ride.

Enjoy Your Ride
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4 Responses to “ Respect the Chain ”

  1. Richard Masoner on August 30, 2014 at 7:32 pm

    chain break on a 27% grade, oof!

  2. Matt Fen on July 1, 2014 at 7:45 pm

    They sure don’t make em like they used to. On my Motobecane which is 37 years old, and excluding the front fork, its 100% original, including the chain. That chain has taken me and that bike cross country multiple times. Its taken me up and down the east coast, cross other continents as well.

    Then there is my Rowingbike…already it has taken me more than 3,000 miles on its one and only Dyneema propulsion system. Best part is although I doubt I’ll need it, I can easily carry a spare which if needed doubles as a tie down.

    Ride often, Ride safe, Right right.

    • Darryl on July 2, 2014 at 6:31 am

      I like your ending quote….Ride often, Ride safe, Ride right. Good stuff.

      Yeah, some chains can last a while…..but they will work best if replaced once they stretch out or get worn.

      Thanks for the comment, Matt.


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Question: I am using the homebrew sugar formulations (sometimes added to green tea).  I am also trying to wean myself off 1/2 dose adrenalean “lip tonic delivery system” (biorhythm brand- caffeine, hoodia g, synephrine, yohimbe) capsule for energy.

My question is other than juice, can you suggest modifications in lieu of table sugar for energy and hydration.


Both raw/organic honey or agave can work great in the homebrew (substitute in the same quantities for the sugar, or to taste), but you do have to shake well in order to make sure they don’t settle out.  Have you tried either of these?  Also, make sure to use at least the minimum amount of salt recommended in the homebrew as the temps rise, you need the sodium replacement if you’re sweating.

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