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Discussion Starter #1
Gang,
I'm presently running a 14/50 combo right now 'cause I do waaaaaay more street running at this present time. And, it's mostly running around town and no, real long back country roads, YET, with constant higher speeds. I had a 14/60 on it when I purchased the T-dub about a month ago and, it was just too darn low geared for street running. But, I'm thinking of maybe getting either a 15T front or, maybe a 55T rear. But, either way, I'll need more chain. I'm wondering, could I just add some that I cut off when I recently installed my new sprockets and chain and, that would also entail adding more master links. What are your thoughts?
Scott
 

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I'm confused by those sprocket choices as they are opposite of each other. Do you want more speed for street or more torque for offroad?

If you change to a 15 and keep the rear at 50 you can use the same chain you are using with 122 links.
 

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I just added two links myself. One was a piece of spare and the other was a spare master. It's fairly common but you'll need to make sure the master clips are in their grooves while also checking the chain isn't so tight that it acts stiff and binds. You have twice the failure points to look after but it's rare that they fail if installed properly.
 

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You'd be surprised at the difference a few teeth can make. I added 2 to my back sprocket to accelerate and climb hills and it was plenty. Now It's only on the roughest climbs that I have to gear down but it didn't sacrifice much top speed.

I haven't had any issues loosing any masterlinks so two shouldn't matter, but I also orient the clip so it leads with it's closed end which may help, IDK.

Actually I believe two master links is how our double rear sprocket members are switching sprockets on the road.
 

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If you're just running around town keep it at 14/50.

If you're future plans include some moderate off roading, keep it at 14/50.

If you're future plans include more street riding, change to a 47 rear tooth sprocket.

If you're future plans include more off-roading in harder terrain, change to the 55 rear tooth sprocket (which will still be fine when running around town).

While changing the rear sprocket is a little bit of a pain in the keister, changing the front sprocket is even more of a pain because you have to remove the side-cover to gain access to the sprocket. You've probably already noticed this. Eventually, you or a mechanic will have to remove the side-cover to change a front sprocket when it wears out. This would be a good time to change the front sprocket size if still needed/wanted. Have a replacement side-cover gasket ready and be prepared to scrap off the old side-cover gasket. Also, be careful not to pinch the wires when replacing the side-cover back.
 

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They say “A chain is only as strong as its weakest link” – well, now you’ve got two of them in there. Having said that, never heard of a correctly installed master link failing yet, so “play on” ….
 

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I have been running two on my TW for years. The TW does not make enough power that its going to have a chain weakened enough to cause issues with a second master. It should not be an issue.

Any time my Duro wheel is on there i run two masters. I need to add 3 links to fit the 55 tooth sprocket and a little extra clearance and i dont care to have an extra chain so any time i put that tire on it i put on two links and another master goes on. Its worked perfectly for years....
 

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I just ordered a 15t front sprocket, and am keeping my 50t rear. This will give me about a 7.1% increase or so in speed overall, and about the same decrease in relative torque. If you're familiar with Tdubskid on Youtube, this is what his most recent setup is. The sprocket calculator he uses:

https://sprocketcalculator.com/

States that if you currently have the standard 14x50 s/ stock chain (122 links) then you'll need 125 links for the adjusted front sprocket. It'll change depending on the back/front obviously. Regarding if you can just use a secondary master to add chain. I have never seen it done. My guess is that you could get away with it, but likely shouldn't. I also think you could get away with using your 122l chain still, but your chain tension adjuster settings will probably be at the "lowest" setting and you may not have much more room for future adjustments?
 

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I just ordered a 15t front sprocket, and am keeping my 50t rear. This will give me about a 7.1% increase or so in speed overall, and about the same decrease in relative torque. If you're familiar with Tdubskid on Youtube, this is what his most recent setup is. The sprocket calculator he uses:

https://sprocketcalculator.com/

States that if you currently have the standard 14x50 s/ stock chain (122 links) then you'll need 125 links for the adjusted front sprocket. It'll change depending on the back/front obviously. Regarding if you can just use a secondary master to add chain. I have never seen it done. My guess is that you could get away with it, but likely shouldn't. I also think you could get away with using your 122l chain still, but your chain tension adjuster settings will probably be at the "lowest" setting and you may not have much more room for future adjustments?
I am running 15/50 and can confirm the stock chain size (122 links) is perfect. I just changed the sprocket and went with an x-ring chain last week. My snail adjusters are slightly below 3.
 

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I have used not only two different master links but also two different chains -- an o-ring chain with a piece of non-o-spliced in. The bike came with a very worn out 42 tooth sprocket and I exchanged it for a 50 tooth and had to lengthen the chain to make it work and I only had non-o-ring chain to work with. It has been this way for many miles.

A picture I have shown many times before. You can see two master links and a short section of open chain between the links.
View attachment 195694
 

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Discussion Starter #12
First off,
I want to thank all of you that have responded to this inquiry. It's really appreciated. While I've owned TW's before, it's been quite a while and, this one is new to me. I'm 6'2.5" and weigh 240 (at present) and so far, with the 14/40 combo, that little 200 cc motor is actually doing quite fine in powering my lard butt around even some grades in our town. I'm actually quite happy with the available power. I did have a 60T rear on it when I purchased it but, as stated earlier, that bike was out of rpms at about 40-45 mph. With the 50, I can cruise very nicely at 40-45 which, is perfectly fine for my application. I'm not wanting a ton of speed out of this little double duty machine. If I want FAST, I'll jump on my GL 1800 Goldwing, then there's no limit!!!

But, I was just wondering what some of you thought about the different arrangements of sprockets and, if need be, to be able to add a small section of chain and maybe another master link if and when the time came. Sounds as if it's no problem what so ever. That's good to know. Again, I appreciate all the come-back here.
Scott
 

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I’d say the problem is the chain’s age more than multiple master links. I’d keep one set for each length needed for the sprocket combo. But the snail adjuster allow for a wide range from 15/50 at 122 to about 15/50 at 128 links.
 

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By design a Master Link is no different and no weaker than any other link in a chain, both are made from the exact same materials. The fail point is in the clip that holds the outer plate securely in place. You could have a half dozen master links of the same chain manufacturer and the chain is still just as strong as long as all the clips are seated properly. As far as sprocket changes for the various ride conditions you most often encounter just follow what Admiral said and settle on what combination works for your conditions. If 14/50 is stock then 14/47 will give a slight increase in top speed while 14/55 will give more torque in rough terrain but detract from top speed. I never found changing the front sprocket to be of much benefit when it is much easier to play around with the rear to get almost the same end result.

GaryL
 

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They say “A chain is only as strong as its weakest link” – well, now you’ve got two of them in there. Having said that, never heard of a correctly installed master link failing yet, so “play on” ….
Yeah, not sure why they say that so much. Most bikes I've ever had, once the endless chain needed replace, I've always used a clip and I've yet to have one fail with tens of thousands of miles worth of riding using them. Have friends that lost the clips riding through the muck and you could tell the clip had been missing for a while without any issue. They just cleaned up the area the pins and instead of replacing the link they just popped another clip on the link from one of their spares. I always ride with a chain breaker and a couple extra clip master links (and a little section of good chain). When packing out, the tools for the rivet takes up more space and I always have a pair of small vise grips to put the new link on.
 
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