Welcome guest, is this your first visit? Click the "Create Account" button now to join.

To disable ads, please log-in.

Shop at TeamEstrogen.com for women's cycling apparel.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 34
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    528

    Question EEEEEKKK! My chain came off

    To disable ads, please log-in.

    At the worst possible point in a ride....down at the bottom of a hill at the river's edge with help a few miles away, my chain came off.

    With a new bike and no knowledge (yet) of how things work I bent over the bike and pondered the situation. It seems a very small bump from the rear pannier did the dirty deed. The chain was off the front.

    Harkening back to the 1960's bikes that I knew something about, I thought I was sunk and would have to push the bike for a few miles. I seem to remember there being no way to re-hook up a chain without major surgery on my old (new at the time) "English Racing Bike" as my father called it.

    However, I was astonished to notice on this bike (Trek 7.6 FX) that if I turned the pedals backwards slowly I could restring the chain and suddenly it was all together again and worked perfectly.

    Doesn't this mean that my chain is too loose for it to be so easily re-strung? It's a brand new bike (2 weeks ago with 45 miles on it so far) so maybe things loosened up?

    Fortunately my LBS is open tomorrow and I can get it checked out but I'd like your opinions for this novice who can take her car apart but who is still mystified by my bike chain.

    Also fortunately there are a couple of local groups offering training on bike maintenance which I'm taking as soon as possible.

    Thanks for your comments.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Blessed to be all over the place!
    Posts
    3,434
    pardes,

    It's not uncommon with triples for the chain to drop. Since the bike is new, the cables will require adjustment after 100 miles, but it's probably not a chain problem per se.

    I encourage you to go and spend about $20 at the lbs and have them install a "third eye". It's wonderful!

    It goes on your seat tube next to the chain ring:

    http://www.icyclesusa.com/catalog/th...in-watcher.htm
    If you don't grow where you're planted, you'll never BLOOM - Will Rogers

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    St. Paul, MN
    Posts
    979
    when your chain decides that restringing itself is not in the future, here is how to get it back in gear. Give the chain some slack by taking one finger and pushing your deraileur forward towards you pedals. then take another finger or the J part of a spoke and just pull it back on. It's not hard.
    Thanks TE! You pushed me half way over!
    http://pages.teamintraining.org/nca/seagull08/tnguyen

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    Pardes, as you get more used to the bike you will throw your chain less often. Sometimes you can get the chain back on without even getting off the bike by switching back to the gear you just left, it's counterintuitive, but it really works!
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    528

    TE help is sensational!

    Thanks folks, for the comments.

    I just love how politely and tactfully stated (without really stating it) that dropping the chain was probably due to my inexperience with shifting gears. You gals/guys are jewels.

    Mr. Silver, I love the idea of the chain 3rd eye. After installed will my bike also hum "Ohmmmmm" as well as watch my chain?

    I shall investigate dropping chains and gears in general. I'm still only using the right shifter only and only up to about 5th gear so far. I'm thinking I'll be 70 before I manage to make it to the left shifter.

    Thanks again. As a reclusive and solitary biker it's great to have this community for support.

    As for today's ride......I made it up to a 10 mile ride today....which for me is a nice improvement from last week. I also tackled some inclines (had to walk a few) but it was well worth it.

    It was worth the dropped chain to be able to get so close to the river and contemplate my navel for a while. The reflections were so surreal that you couldn't tell what was water and what was tree reflections on the water.


    A doe, a very large doe who seemed to be inordinately fascinated by my presence waited patiently for me to grab my camera from my backpack. I was able to get within twenty feet of her and she still kept studying me as if I was an alien who had just landed.


    After puttering and pedaling around for a couple of hours I was very glad to crawl on the bus and ride the four miles back to a stop near my house. My saddle is wearing a shower cap since rain was threatening. There was another bus passenger who was also wearing the same shower cap. How very odd.


    My red backpack and rear panniers are sitting by the bus door. I was able to stuff a 7 lb bag of ice and other groceries into the pannier.....not to mention the roast beef sub for supper.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    4,556
    Wow! Thanks for sharing pictures of your bike, and your ride - looks lovely

    CA
    Most days in life don't stand out, But life's about those days that will...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    St. Paul, MN
    Posts
    979
    I wouldn't say inexperience is the cause. I think experience can curtail it sometimes, but I've seen very experienced cyclists drop their chain.
    Thanks TE! You pushed me half way over!
    http://pages.teamintraining.org/nca/seagull08/tnguyen

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,083
    Oooh, pretty red bike, oooh...

    I drop my chain all the time. I usually adjust my own gears and I was a bit sloppy last time and I've been too lazy to do anything about it so if I gear up a bit too vigorously in front I hear a familiar rattle-rattle as the chain falls off the front, hopefully not followed by a clank! as the chain gets stuck on a sticking out bolt head. Most times I can get it back on w/o stopping by carefully backpedalling and then gearing down again.

    Notice that the long arm on your rear derailleur provides tension to the chain, and that it can be moved back and forth manually. You'll get a bit oily, but if you drop the chain again you can just push the arm forward a little to give some slack and weasel the chain back on the smallest gear in front (gear down to that gear in front first).

    Actually, re-reading that's exactly what madscot said, just with a lot fewer words.

    Beautiful photos!
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Blessed to be all over the place!
    Posts
    3,434
    Quote Originally Posted by madscot13 View Post
    I wouldn't say inexperience is the cause. I think experience can curtail it sometimes, but I've seen very experienced cyclists drop their chain.
    I agree...before the "third eye", I regularly dropped my chain...and sometimes it wasn't even my fault although the time I bent the chain ring at the Hilly Hundred, it was clearly my fault

    I think it's great what you're doing! But remember, cycling doesn't have to be solitary...

    My saddle is wearing a shower cap since rain was threatening. There was another bus passenger who was also wearing the same shower cap. How very odd.
    That's a classic I will remember for a long time
    Last edited by Mr. Bloom; 08-10-2008 at 02:43 AM.
    If you don't grow where you're planted, you'll never BLOOM - Will Rogers

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    Nice piccies!

    And at the risk of stating the obvious - because it can be easy to forget when you're trying to work quickly -

    keep your fingers out of the area where they can get caught between the chain and the chainring! If you HAVE to touch the part of the chain that's feeding into the chainring, just keep two fingers on the side plates.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    I love your photos! Chestnut HILL road, eh? does that tell us something about the terrain in which you are commuting?
    Don't be afraid of shifting with the left hand, as a matter of fact, I encourage you to try it, maybe in a school yard or someplace where you feel really safe. Particularly if you are riding in hilly terrain,you might discover that using these other gears can be a real boon.
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,101
    Mimi just said what I was going to say. If you start using your granny gear (easiest ring on the front/left), you will get up those hills. Practice in a parking lot or other small street and go through all of the gears. You will soon find out what all of the sweet spots are.

    You can get the chain back on by quickly getting the front (left) gear into the big ring (hardest gear) and pedaling hard. I have done this a few times, without even unclipping and it works.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,507
    It's much more difficult to hurt your bike than you think. Heaven knows I've tried.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    528

    Granny Gear

    Quote Originally Posted by Crankin View Post
    Mimi just said what I was going to say. If you start using your granny gear (easiest ring on the front/left), you will get up those hills. Practice in a parking lot or other small street and go through all of the gears. You will soon find out what all of the sweet spots are.
    Wait a minute, Crankin....are you saying that I'm not already using the granny gear?????? And that there are easier gears than what I'm using????

    Okay so there is a shifter on the left with three steps and there is a shifter on the right with nine steps. If the indicator line on the left shifter is set all the way to the right, and the indicator line on the right shifter is set all the way to the right, doesn't that mean it's the granny gear?

    Mr. Silver. I think it's great what you're doing! But remember, cycling doesn't have to be solitary...
    This is a serious biking area. I need to build up more stamina before I can keep up with the "beginners" in these groups. The typical "easy" rides average between 10-15 mph for a few hours at a time. I'm almost there but not quite.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    8,548
    I'm not familiar with your shifters, but I looked at the photo of your bike on the bus and it looked to me as if your chain was on the middle gear (in the front) the biggest one is for going the fastest IN THE FRONT and the smallest one in the front is for climbing hills.
    In the back, it is the opposite. the biggest gear is for the hardest climbs, and you will move the slowest.
    Mimi Team TE BIANCHISTA
    for six tanks of gas you could have bought a bike.

 

 

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •