There are common maintenance tasks that every motorcycle rider should perform on a daily basis. Checking tire pressure probably tops the list, but chain inspections and maintenance follow close behind. Making sure your chain and sprockets are clean and lubed is important for a long life and good function, but making sure that there is the correct slack in the chain is just as important. A chain that is too loose can make the drive train sloppy, and in extreme cases, can cause the chain to derail from the sprockets, a very dangerous situation. A chain that is too tight will wear it and the sprockets quickly, and can damage bearings in the wheel and countershaft in extreme cases. A tight chain can also affect suspension performance; in some cases even prevent the suspension from moving through its complete range of travel.
Clearly, chain adjustment is critical.
Every owner’s manual details a procedure for chain adjustment, but some are more detailed than others. And the amount of slack varies from one model to another. To make things even more complicated, there are two primary methods to measure chain slack, and they are very different from each other. The most common is standard chain slack, where the measurement is from the point of the chain pushed upwards until taut, to the point where the chain is taut pushed downward, either on the top or bottom side of the swingarm, depending on the design. The other method is the absolute method, where the chain is pulled up above the swingarm, and the distance from the top of the swingarm to the center of the chain is the specified measurement.
Motion Pro recently introduced the Slacksetter Pro, a handy tool that can be used to quickly and accurately measure both standard chain slack or absolute measurements. A dual scale can be easily oriented with the preferred scale for easy use by both right and left handed users, or for use on the top or bottom of the swingarm. A sliding cover is used to set zero or determine the measurement, depending on how it is used. It’s compact size, and integrated design take up little room in a tool box, and it’s reinforced nylon plastic construction is durable, easy to clean and will not damage the finish on the swingarm. The Slacksetter Pro comes with detailed instructions for its use.
With a suggested retail under $19.00, and the usual generous Motion Pro margin, this is a tool that you should stock in your parts department, and share with all your customers. At that price, it can be an impulse buy for a customer in your store on other business. Send a few down to the service department as well; the techs will save time and effort on a critical maintenance task that has to be performed on nearly every bike that comes through the service department.
Don’t forget that Motion Pro also offers several other tools that make chain maintenance easy, from the Chain Alignment Tool, to the Sprocket Jammer and Master Link Press Tool, to a variety of chain breakers for every job. Last but not least, Motion Pro is now selling a Chain Brush as well, a common tool that makes cleaning a chain much easier, and we are offering it at an excellent price point