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How to Use a Chain Whip

How to Use a Chain Whip

A bike is an excellent machine for exercise and leisure. From time to time, you may notice that some part of your bike has been damaged. Your bike can wear out due to improper maintenance, since it is easy to overlook certain parts.

If you only clean your bike partially, it may become discolored. Dirt is likely to clog up the parts that you do not clean frequently.

How to Use A Chain Whip- A Brief Overview

So what exactly is a chain whip, and what is it used for? Before we get to that, we need to learn more about bike cassettes.

One of the parts that is sometimes overlooked when cleaning is the cassette hub. Many modern bikes use the cassette hub, which is a freehub system. The hub has a freewheel with thread on it.

In bikes which have multiple gears, cassettes help provide the option of choosing different gear ratios. Each cassette consists of “sprockets”, which are teeth for your chain to rest on. Engaging the larger sprockets results in lower gear ratios, and vice versa.

The issue with such an intricate piece of equipment is that its inner parts are extremely difficult to reach when cleaning.

To access every part of this cassette, you need to clean the cogs on the rear wheel.

This is where a chain whip comes in handy – during the process of cleaning the gears, it could assist you in removing the cassette by loosening the freewheel.

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Factors for Effective Cassette Cleaning

For effective cleaning of the cassette, the following factors should be put into consideration:

  • Type of cog: The type of cog on the rear wheel shows the type of cassette you have, whether a lock ring type or non-lock ring type.
  • Type of cassette: The principal factor that contributes to the success of your bike cleaning process is the model of the cassette. The type of cassette you have serves as a guide about the type of lock ring your bike possess.

Cogs slide onto the body of the freehub and stay in place under the influence of the lock ring. Whenever, you want to loosen the lock ring, look for the word “lock” and turn it in the anti-clockwise direction to make it unthread. You can hear a loud noise; immediately, you loosen the lock ring because of the knurling under the lock ring.

Instead of using your hand to remove the lock ring, you should make use of a chain whip that grips the cassette and allows you to loosen the lock ring with a separate cassette tool. The chain whip is a long spanner with two chains at the end of the handle. The handle can be of various materials, including wood and steel.

Advantages of a Chain Whip

The following are the benefits of a chain whip:

  • It holds the cassette in place
  • It prevents the rotation of the cassette
  • It prevents staining of the bike
  • It involves less stress

Note that the width of the chain matches the chain whip you possess. It would be best if you bought a chain whip that fits all cassette ranges.

Here’s A Guide on How to Use Your Chain Whip

This video shows you how to use a chain whip (credit to Park Tool)

A chain whip is a vital bike instrument that you should have to maintain your bike properly. Thus, to achieve this, you need to know how to use the chain whip. Here is a step by step guide:

  • Remove the rear wheel: Mount the bike so that you can remove the rear wheel easily
  • Remove the skewer
  • Select the right type of remover
  • Use the chain whip: Hold the cogs in a clockwise direction with the chain whip.
  • Turn the sprockets: Rotate the sprocket in an anti-clockwise direction, but do not touch the wheel when you are turning the sprockets
  • Hold the cassette: Prevent the cassette from spinning, when you want to remove the cassette. The chain whip helps to hold the cassette from moving

If you are still unsure of how to use the chain whip, make sure you get help from someone who is more experienced than yourself!

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