Removing a chain quick-link without tools

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CJ
Posts: 3089
Joined: 15 Jan 2007, 9:55pm

Re: Removing a chain quick-link without tools

Postby CJ » 22 Jul 2020, 12:11pm

Quicklink made easy.JPG
Quicklink made easy.JPG (28.73 KiB) Viewed 213 times
This is the method I always use, at home in the workshop as well as on the road. It isn't any fiddle, doesn't require any special tool (not even a bent nail) and always works. It helps with 8 & 9-speed if you pinch the sideplates together, then a light tap will do. Ten (and presumably 11) -speed quicklinks are supposedly single use and made tighter, so have to be hit harder and pinching doesn't help much with those, but the method still works.

NOTE: You need to hit the side of the quicklink where there's no slot at the end you're hitting - i,e. the outer side as pictured - and hit towards the slot. But most chainrings are thicker than their teeth and step outwards (as does this one) in a step that's sometimes big enough to stop my link separation process in its tracks! Accordingly I've learnt to position the link not as shown, but 'slot up' and tap the inward side instead, because there's rarely any interfering step on the back of a chainring. (I really ought to take a new photo, but I'm lazy and nobody's paying me to do this stuff anymore!)

So admittedly there's a bit of a knack to this method, but it isn't difficult and after a decade or so of doing it this way, never with any problems, I can't see any point in learning any other trick that may or may not work in some circumstances - or buying a special tool.

P.S. Ten-speed quick-links take quite a lot of force not only to open but also to snap back together. The best way I've found to effect the latter is to re-assemble the chain in little and little (less tension on it too, so what's not to like about that?), position the quick-link in the top run of chain with cranks horizontal, hold the rear brake and stamp on the forward pedal.
Chris Juden
One lady owner, never raced or jumped.

DevonDamo
Posts: 449
Joined: 24 May 2011, 1:42am

Re: Removing a chain quick-link without tools

Postby DevonDamo » 22 Jul 2020, 9:55pm

CJ wrote:
Quicklink made easy.JPG
This is the method I always use, at home in the workshop as well as on the road. It isn't any fiddle, doesn't require any special tool (not even a bent nail) and always works...


Thanks CJ. Even though I think the 'bent nail' method is the easiest one to make work with only 2 hands (providing the quick link actually releases, which it has on my bikes so far) I've made a mental note of your technique for if/when I get a quick-link refusing to budge without greater persuasion.

mercalia
Posts: 14490
Joined: 22 Sep 2013, 10:03pm
Location: london South

Re: Removing a chain quick-link without tools

Postby mercalia » 31 Aug 2020, 10:20pm

Lidl have some cheap pliers at the moment ( £2.49) that can be useful in removing the quick links

WP_20200831_13_24_56_Pro.jpg


The best is the long thin one. I did get the other and file the jaws down so they fit better

jb
Posts: 1008
Joined: 6 Jan 2007, 12:17pm
Location: Clitheroe

Re: Removing a chain quick-link without tools

Postby jb » 1 Sep 2020, 12:30pm

CJ wrote:Quicklink made easy.JPGThis is the method I always use, at home in the workshop as well as on the road. It isn't any fiddle, doesn't require any special tool (not even a bent nail) and always works. It helps with 8 & 9-speed if you pinch the sideplates together, then a light tap will do. Ten (and presumably 11) -speed quicklinks are supposedly single use and made tighter, so have to be hit harder and pinching doesn't help much with those, but the method still works.

NOTE: You need to hit the side of the quicklink where there's no slot at the end you're hitting - i,e. the outer side as pictured - and hit towards the slot. But most chainrings are thicker than their teeth and step outwards (as does this one) in a step that's sometimes big enough to stop my link separation process in its tracks! Accordingly I've learnt to position the link not as shown, but 'slot up' and tap the inward side instead, because there's rarely any interfering step on the back of a chainring. (I really ought to take a new photo, but I'm lazy and nobody's paying me to do this stuff anymore!)

So admittedly there's a bit of a knack to this method, but it isn't difficult and after a decade or so of doing it this way, never with any problems, I can't see any point in learning any other trick that may or may not work in some circumstances - or buying a special tool.

P.S. Ten-speed quick-links take quite a lot of force not only to open but also to snap back together. The best way I've found to effect the latter is to re-assemble the chain in little and little (less tension on it too, so what's not to like about that?), position the quick-link in the top run of chain with cranks horizontal, hold the rear brake and stamp on the forward pedal.


If only the chain were that clean when it needs separating on the hoof. :D
Cheers
J Bro

DevonDamo
Posts: 449
Joined: 24 May 2011, 1:42am

Re: Removing a chain quick-link without tools

Postby DevonDamo » 1 Sep 2020, 12:37pm

mercalia wrote:Lidl have some cheap pliers at the moment ( £2.49) that can be useful in removing the quick links

The best is the long thin one. I did get the other and file the jaws down so they fit better


Just after Vorpal had mentioned using a Leatherman tool, I spotted Lidl were selling Crivit-branded copies extremely cheaply so I bought three of those. Not only do they fit the quick-link, they're really compact and have a load of other useful stuff on them. I don't mind leaving them permanently in the on-bike toolkits as they conform to my pub-bike policy of not having anything stupidly expensive that will attract thieves or break the bank if they do get robbed.