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Unbelievably tight KMC 10sp quick link!

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Unbelievably tight KMC 10sp quick link!

Old 06-28-19, 05:30 AM
  #1  
migrantwing
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Unbelievably tight KMC 10sp quick link!

Came to give my bike the once over before setting out for a ride on Sunday. Brand new KMC X10.93 chain fitted (now called simply X10, the new black/silver type in the hard plastic case) and quick link that came with the chain in the box. Lubed chain, cleaned off excess, checked brakes, gears etc. All good. Came to wipe off chain once again to see if there was any more excess last night and noticed that I couldn't open the quick link. I tried absolutely everything, no joy. I have always been able to remove KMC quick links using only my fingers, even if they've been a little tough sometimes. I flexed the chain, added more lube to the quick link, tried GT85, tried the wire around the link trick, tried the needle nose pliers trick. Nothing! In the end, I had to cut the quick link through with a hacksaw, this way I able to remove the chain from the bike, and then get some pliers to get the left over pieces off the chain. Maybe I should have just left the quick link on the chain, until it had worn a little bit, but I doubt that I would have been able to release it even then.

I've never known anything like it. Has anyone had any hassle with new chains/quicklinks from KMC? I'm quite reluctant to add another.
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Old 06-28-19, 05:58 AM
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TimothyH
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Buy the tool.

The link is only "unbelievably tight" if the proper tool can't remove it.

I used to mess with needlenose pliers, etc., until I bought the tool two years ago. Wish I had done it two decades ago.

Even with the tool, some links take lots of force.


-Tim-
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Old 06-28-19, 06:13 AM
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shelbyfv
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Not to mention why did you want to remove a "brand new" chain?
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Old 06-28-19, 06:30 AM
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Was likely a “single use” link - they lock closed and need a tool to remove. As I understand it, the only difference between these and reusable links is the tiny metal nubs that lock the link closed. File these down and, hey presto, you have a reusable link. My past batch of SRAM 10sp chains had single use links. After they had their single use I replaced them with Connexs. This might be the way things are going, as my previous batch of the same chain model all contained reusable links. Why sell you a reusable link when they can force you to continue buying new single-use links?

Last edited by Litespud; 06-28-19 at 06:35 AM.
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Old 06-28-19, 07:26 AM
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KMC has long had 2 types of links: "reusable" (non-latching), and "non-reusable" (latching).
And in my experience, you can find either type in the box with a KMC chain.
Just get the Park MLP-1 and it is trivial to open either kind.
https://www.parktool.com/product/mas...pliers-mlp-1-2
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Old 06-28-19, 07:37 AM
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Buy the tool. Seriously. Worth every penny.

It doesn't matter what the mfr. writes on the packaging-- no such thing as "single use." I re-use 11-speed links dozens of times each, as the chains come off the bikes 10-12 times during the life of the chain.
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Old 06-28-19, 07:50 AM
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Originally Posted by migrantwing View Post
... I have always been able to remove KMC quick links using only my fingers...

... I'm quite reluctant to add another.
Odd that you seek out anonymous internet opinions while ignoring the bulk of your own first-hand experience.
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Old 06-28-19, 09:01 AM
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Another vote for getting the quick link pliers or if out on the road you can use this trick.
Even a rock will do to knock the link loose.
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Old 06-28-19, 11:01 AM
  #9  
trailangel
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Why remove if you don't have to? New chains wear fast, so just leave it and add lube. Clean chain on the bike.
I don't hit my chain plate with rocks. Now I carry this lightweight wolf tool.. a bit pricey, but when you do other peoples bikes more than yours it comes in handy.
https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...s.php?id=93762
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Old 06-28-19, 11:19 AM
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YEP....the tool is great. I have the tool from Park and one of the best tools I own for home bike maintenance!
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Old 06-28-19, 11:21 AM
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TimothyH
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Originally Posted by trailangel View Post
Why remove if you don't have to? New chains wear fast, so just leave it and add lube. Clean chain on the bike.
I don't hit my chain plate with rocks. Now I carry this lightweight wolf tool.. a bit pricey, but when you do other peoples bikes more than yours it comes in handy.
https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...s.php?id=93762
Some like to rotate several chains to extend the life of cassettes and chainrings.




-Tim-
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Old 06-28-19, 11:58 AM
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The Wolf tool looks nice. Valve core removal as well.
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Old 06-28-19, 03:51 PM
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
Buy the tool. Seriously. Worth every penny.

It doesn't matter what the mfr. writes on the packaging-- no such thing as "single use." I re-use 11-speed links dozens of times each, as the chains come off the bikes 10-12 times during the life of the chain.
I consider "single use" to mean "use on a single chain". IIRC the single use thing is a patent workaround.
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Old 06-28-19, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Not to mention why did you want to remove a "brand new" chain?
Because I wanted to.
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Old 06-28-19, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Crankycrank View Post
Another vote for getting the quick link pliers or if out on the road you can use this trick. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=85Uednr4zFI Even a rock will do to knock the link loose.
Cool trick. Seen it done once on the road.
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Old 06-28-19, 05:14 PM
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Originally Posted by TimothyH View Post
Buy the tool.

The link is only "unbelievably tight" if the proper tool can't remove it.

I used to mess with needlenose pliers, etc., until I bought the tool two years ago. Wish I had done it two decades ago.

Even with the tool, some links take lots of force.


-Tim-
Yep. I've put off buying the tool for far too long.
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Old 06-28-19, 06:17 PM
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On my old 8 & 9 spd. bikes I was always able to remove the quick links by hand too. But, with 10 & 11 spd. drivetrains things changed as the links are now very tight. Like everybody says, by the tool. It will save you a lot of grief. Luckily, they aren't very expensive.

Park Master Link Pliers
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Old 06-28-19, 07:27 PM
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I once had a KMC link that wouldn't close. I tried everything. Got so peed-off, I emailed KMC. They asked me to send them the link. I did and they sent a new one back to me.
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Old 06-29-19, 03:33 AM
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Most quick links are single use, just like the Shimano joining pin. If you want to remove the chain with your hands get a whipperman chain link or get chain link pliers as suggested by others.
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Old 06-29-19, 09:41 AM
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Originally Posted by dsbrantjr View Post
I consider "single use" to mean "use on a single chain". IIRC the single use thing is a patent workaround.
Same here. I use one set of quick links on the same chain. when chain wears out I throw out the quick links too. I remove my chain numerous times during its life using the same quick links and have never had an issue with KMC or Shimano.
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Old 06-29-19, 02:02 PM
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Originally Posted by gearbasher View Post
I once had a KMC link that wouldn't close. I tried everything. Got so peed-off, I emailed KMC. They asked me to send them the link. I did and they sent a new one back to me.
On the very first KMC chain I tried, I got a bum Missing Link that wouldn't close, because one of the pins wasn't perpendicular to the side plate:

I had no other links around and had to scramble for one. I emailed KMC and asked for a new chain for my hassle, They wanted me to fill out a form and send in the chain. I did not.

In both your case and mine, KMC could have made lifelong friends by saying "Jeez, we're sorry, that shouldn't have happened! We're sending you a new whatever for your trouble. So sorry!"

But no, you have to return the link, so KMC can be sure you're not scamming them to get a free $5 item that costs them pennies to manufacture. What a great company (not).

To the OP, I agree with other posters who recommend a tool for the job, but I too did it for many years without one and could always get the link off. Maybe you too got a bum link from KMC.
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