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bike maintenance - chain

Cranking up a farm track on the Mawson Trail between Clare and Burra, a great day’s riding, when ping, the chain’s snapped.

That was bad news, it had snapped a few times earlier, time to replace it no doubt, and changing gears under load heading up a steep hill has a downside.

The last spare pin went in. No backups now. A nerve racking ride without a safety net.

No bike parts in Burra whatsoever, and Burra isn’t even remote. It’s either back to Gawler, Port Augusta or on to Melrose for the next bike shop, all more than 100km away.

Fortunately the first bike riders seen in three weeks are already at the only caravan park. Garrett was a tandem riding bike mechanic, heading for Perth. He hands over a fist full of pins, ensuring it will never snap again. Thanks, mate.

It’s easy to fix a broken chain if you carry a chain breaker tool and some spare links. There’s two types of links and it’s worthwhile to carry a few of them both.

Take a some of the expensive SRAM Quicklinks. They are easier to whip in when you are out on the road.

The Shimano pins are cheap but take a little skill during installation. Grab a handful for emergencies and remember that Murphy’s Law states that then you will never need them.