Chain specifications
Did you know that the bush roller chain was first patented and manufactured by Hans Renold in 1879?
A roller chain size can usually be identified by the following measurements:
The pitch - this is the distance between the centres of the pins
The inside width - this is the distance between the innermost sideplates
The roller diameter - this is the diameter of the roller
On motorcycles, the final drive chain is a roller chain - the chain has rollers which are moveable and can rotate. Some primary and camshaft chains are 'bush' chains where there are no rollers that turn.
   Pitch      
The table below, is a guide to chain sizes commonly used on classic and vintage motorcycles. Some of these chain sizes are also used on modern motorcycles for final drive chains.
Please - use the 'drop down boxes' to view measurements in Metric or British Imperial inches and also to view whether also stocked in duplex (double row) and triplex (triple row).
Inside width
Roller diameter
Reference codes
The chain specialists




roller
roller
bush

bush

bush

bush
Type of roller





roller







The information above is correct to the best of our knowledge. It is not a comprehensive list of all chain sizes but we have listed chain sizes which we normally have in stock. Other sizes and types may be available to order. Camshaft and primary chains for modern motorcycles have not been included. The dimensions shown are internal and in some sizes, there are many types of  chain available e.g. heavy duty, 'O' ring, 'X' ring and 'Z' ring. Some sizes which are used on modern large capacity bikes are only available as 'O' , 'X' or 'Z' ring. If there is any doubt about the type of chain which should be fitted to a bike, please refer to the manufacturer of the motorcycle.
We also stock cranked links for many sizes which enable an odd number of links to be achieved - these are not available for 'O' ring type chains. Other chain parts such as split and rivet links are also available for most chains.

Chain length
All motorcycle chain lengths are expressed by the number of pitches or rollers within it. So if you have an old chain that is in need of replacement and you wish to check the length - just count the number of rollers in it including the rollers on each end. If the number is an odd number, then it must have a half link in it. If the chain is very worn, and its history is unknown eg. you have purchased a motorcycle with a worn chain on it, please be aware that sometimes a roller or two may have been removed by the previous owner in an attempt to re-adjust it. In such cases, there is a danger of purchasing a new chain which is too short - so if there is any doubt - it is always better to purchase a new chain which has more rollers than the worn one.
To calculate approximately how many rollers are needed - if you can take a measurement in inches for example by using some string then divide the number of inches by the pitch for the relevant chain size eg. 65 inches divided by 0.625 (the pitch for 5/8") = 104 rollers.
We can calculate a chain length for you...............we will need to know:
The chain size
Number of teeth on both sprockets
Centre distance between the sprockets
and then............give us a ring!
Telephone: 01386 831341
simplex

roller
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
simplex
roller
roller
roller
roller
roller
roller
roller
roller
roller
roller
roller
Altering the length of a chain
The following information refers only to chains used on classic and vintage bikes. Most modern bikes use are fitted with 'O' ring type chains where alterations and repairs such as these should not be made.
To SHORTEN a chain by ONE pitch or roller which contains an EVEN number of pitches:
Remove the parts shown in blue in Fig. 1 and replace with a double cranked link with a connecting link as shown in blue in Fig. 2
To SHORTEN a chain by ONE pitch or roller which contains an ODD number of pitches or rollers:
Remove the parts shown in Fig. 3 and replace with two rollers with a connecting link as shown in Fig. 4
Important: these instructions and illustrations describe and show temporary alterations. For permanent alterations, the parts marked * should be replaced by using a rivet type link.