Does a bicycle chain have a master link?

Replacement Pin or Master Link: New chains will come with either a new pin, or a specialized link called a master link, to connect the two ends of the chain together.

Nope, not all chains have master links. If your bicycle has derailleurs, it means it’s unlikely that your bike’s chain will have a master link.

For years KMC, YBN, SRAM and Wippermann have used such links, while Shimano and Campagnolo held out and stuck with special replacement pins. However, even Shimano is now changing its tune and its latest 11 and 12 speed chains are available with master links.

A master link or quick-release link is a roller chain accessory that allows convenient connection and disconnection of a chain without the need for a chain tool. It acts as a set of the chain’s outer plates, so joining two sets of the chain’s inner plate ends.

2 Answers. You could try using a simple chain breaking/Rivet tool to break the chain at one point (while still keeping the pin in the link) and then put the chain on and use the tool again to push the pin in and join the chain like that. That’s the way I always do it.

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How often should I change my bike chain?

To avoid this accelerated wear of your cassette and chainrings, a general rule of thumb is to replace your bike’s chain every 2,000 miles. Mind you, this is just a starting point.

Not to worry. A chain is as strong as its weakest link. If a chain with 1 master link is strong enough, a chain with 2 master links will be strong enough too.

Is KMC Missing Link compatible with Shimano chain, Sram chain, or Campy chain? Yes, KMC constructs Missing Link I, II, 9, and 10 for 7.3mm, 7.1mm, 6.6mm, and 5.9mm respectively; all Missing Links are compatible with Sram, Shimano, and Campy equivalent chains.

Each set of “inner plates” is a link. Each set of “outer plates” is a “link.” In the photo below you can see two whole links.

Place your pliers in the middle of the chain link you want to alter. Slowly open the pliers while they are in the center of the chain link. Start to wedge the pliers higher and higher up the chain-link section until it opens. Make sure you do not twist the chain or the pliers.

How to Remove Chain Links Without a Chain Breaker Tool

  1. Locate the section of the chain that you want to separate. …
  2. Place the head of the flathead screwdriver between the middle of the chain and the top plate on the chain, just below where the rivets were in Step 1. …
  3. Repeat steps 1-2 for the exact opposite side of the chain that you removed in the previous steps.
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If you have a SRAM Powerlink as your master link, apparently you need to squeeze the two plates (if you stood over the bike, one on left side, one on right) toward each other for release, at which point it’s easy to slide the two halves of the master link toward each other along the line of the chain and the link drops …

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