8 Best Bike Chains for Enhanced Durability

If you have ridden a bike for years, you know how important and crucial bike chains are for the seamless operation of the vehicle. Not only does it enable smoother movement, but the bike chains also ensure to connect the brakes and the other functional elements of the bike. 

We can’t stress this enough but if your bike chain isn’t of the best quality, you are eventually going to struggle with the quality of riding and the smoother movements of the bike. Unlike the accessory parts like the rear carriage and the bells and the other important elements, the bike chain is one that you just can’t bypass.

While choosing a bike chain, there is a lot more that you need to keep a check on aside from the quality and the compatibility. You need to ensure that the bike chain that you are buying is durable, abrasion-resistant, and long-wearing too.

The only issue? There are a plethora of available brands that sell bike chains. This means that you are going to struggle a lot when it comes to choosing the best pick for your needs. For your convenience, we have sorted out the best products for you, both in terms of quality and overall functionalities.

8 Best Bike Chains in 2021 – Reviews

From the cheaper ones to the versatile ones, we have ensured to include a range of products that you can make the most use out of in this list. We wanted to enlist the products that are not just of the best quality but also affordable and highly durable too. Following are our best picks that you can look into:

1. zonkie 6/7/8 Speed Bike Chain

  • Number of links – 116
  • Compatible with – Shimano, Campagnolo, Sram

With so many different types of bike chains available in the market, the zonkie 6/7/8 Speed Bike Chain is an option that you wouldn’t regret splurging out on. This one in particular is a highly compatible bike chain that you can consider for your bike.

This bike chain is designed with easy installation for a magic buckle that is easy to assemble and disassemble for superior functions like no other. The best thing about this bike chain is that it’s reusable and easy to clean.

The bike chain is designed with high-quality forging steel with repeated forging for enhanced durability and better control over the strength of the bike chain for long-lasting usage. Also, the oiling and surface polishing is easy to get done for smoother movement of the bike.

The bike chain is designed for an accurate match with multiple bikes because it is integrated with equipment test spacing and professional test data for optimal usage. Also, the steel used in this is rust-resistant and long-lasting.

Pros

  • Abrasion-resistant
  • Durable forged steel material
  • Highly compatible
  • Easy to install
  • Professionally tested

Cons

  • A quick link is poorly formed

2. KMC X8.99/X8 Bicycle Chain

  • Color – Silver
  • Speed – 18/21/24

Next on the list of the best bicycle chains that you can consider investing in is the KMC X8.99/X8 Bicycle Chain. The brand is one of the most popular brands in the market, not to mention one of the most affordable ones too.

The best thing about this bike chain is the fact that its stretch proof and can withstand long days of wear and tear so you can use it for long-lasting usage. This also converts to heightened mileage of the bike, especially for the ones who tend to bike daily.

The bike chain from KMC is designed with the best-quality alloy materials along with a mushroomed pin, making it one of the most durable options on the market. The chain is compatible with eight different bike speeds and is designed with 116 links for a smoother ride.

Pros

  • Durable alloy construction
  • Stretch proof
  • Durable construction
  • Comes with a mushroomed pin
  • Integrated with multiple bike speeds

Cons

  • Doesn’t have enough links for some bikes

3. SHIMANO Ultegra CN-6701 Chain

  • Color – Silver
  • Size – True
  • Number of links – 116

Another popular and high-quality bike chain that you can consider buying is the SHIMANO Ultegra CN-6701 Chain. This one is unlike anything else, especially when it comes to the durability and the compatibility of this chain.

Shimano is one of the leading brands when it comes to bike needs and accessories, so it isn’t surprising that this one is a bestselling product available on Amazon. Although a little overpriced, the quality makes up for the price you pay.

This top-rate bike chain is compatible with 10-different speed needs, which is another reason why it is an ideal investment for road bikes. Unlike the other options, this bike chain is designed with a zinc alloy material for rust-resistant long-lasting usage.

Despite the solid build, the chain is pretty lightweight and is integrated with 116 links, which makes easy compatibility with most of the bikes available in the market. The redesigned inner and outer plates in the bike chain ensure a smoother and noise-free shift.

Pros

  • Durable construction
  • Made with zinc steel alloy
  • Compatible with 10 speeds
  • Lightweight and rust-resistant
  • Ensures smoother shift

Cons

  • A little overpriced

4. Shimano Unisex’s CNHG95116 Bike Parts

  • Color – Silver
  • Style – Strap
  • Number of links – 116

Another superior Shimano bike chain that is worth considering is the Shimano Unisex’s CNHG95116 Bike Parts. Not only do you get the standard 116 links in the bike chain, but it is also one of the most durable options that you’d get in the market.

Since Shimano has an extremely good name in the market, it goes without saying that this is one of the few options that you wouldn’t regret splurging out on. Even this one, like the previous one, is constructed of zinc steel alloy.

One unique feature of this bike chain is the fact that it’s integrated with the Sil-Tec treatment on the plates that ensures smoother shifting without any risks of damage or accidents that many bike riders often tend to complain about.

This bike chain is also designed in a way to reduce the friction by 60% both between the inner and the outer link of the chains for a comfortable riding experience.

Pros

  • Easy to install
  • Integrated with Sil-Tec treatment
  • Made of zinc steel alloy
  • Easy shifting
  • Comfortable riding experience

Cons

  • Cleaning is a hassle

5. SRAM PC 951 9-Speed Bicycle Chain

  • Speed – 9-speed compatibility
  • Number of links – 114
  • Color – Silver

Another superior brand that you wouldn’t regret looking into is the SRAM PC 951 9-Speed Bicycle Chain. This is one of the few bike chains in the market that is compatible with 9-speed bikes for superior movement.

The chain is integrated with a Powerlink chain connector and is one of the few budget-friendly chains that you can get your hands on in the market. The bike chain comes with rivets with a 2-step process with Pushpin power.

Also, the bike chain is integrated with 114 links and is one of the most durable bike chains that you can get your hands on. Not just that, it is extremely durable, all you need to do is clean and lube it now and then for superior functions.

One unique feature of this bike chain is that it’s integrated with Power Chain II technology that ensures smoother front and load shifting without any drawbacks. The smoother design of the inner and outer plate makes it one of the best investments that you can make for your bikes.

Pros

  • Integrated with Powerlink chain connector
  • Durable construction
  • Supports Power Chain II technology
  • Smoother shifting
  • Rust-resistant construction

Cons

  • Not compatible with every bike

6. KING PROCOMPANY #415 Chain

  • Color – Silver
  • Length – 56 inches
  • Warranty – 1 year

Another high-quality and reliable bike chain that you can consider buying is the KING PROCOMPANY #415 Chain. Not just for the standard bikes, this one is also compatible with the motorized bikes that have a hard time finding good chains for.

This heavy-duty bike chain is hands down one of the best that you can get your hands on, especially if you are looking to buy something for long-term use. Also, the bike chain is ideal for the a2 stroke bike engines.

Also, this bike chain is one of the most versatile options that you can get your hands on. The 415-chain can last for longer periods without causing unnecessary damage or wear and tear in the long run. The bike chain comes with a free master link as well.

Pros

  • Heavy-duty bike chain
  • Ideal for long-lasting usage
  • Durable construction
  • Compatible with multiple bikes
  • Comes with a free master link for easy installation

Cons

  • A little heavy

7. Inkesky 10 Speed Bike Chain

  • Color – Rainbow
  • Material – Titanium coating
  • Number of links – 116 

If you are looking into buying some unique colored bike chains, the Inkesky 10 Speed Bike Chain is another popular option that you can consider looking into. This bike chain is integrated with 116 links for easier installation.

The bike chain is compatible with 10 speeds for an easier user experience. Also, the bike chain is available in different types of colors. The exterior of the bike chain features a titanium nitride coating for making it corrosion resistant as well.

The best thing about this bike chain is the fact that it comes with high compatibility, especially for the majority of the standard bike brands that are available in the market. This serial chain is extremely lightweight as well, making the installation process a lot easier.

Pros

  • Lightweight construction
  • Compatible with the majority of the bikes
  • Comes with titanium nitride coating
  • Supports 10-speed bikes
  • Easy to install

Cons

  • A lot more expensive than other ones

8. VGEBY Bike Chain

  • Color – Silver
  • Speed – 7 and 21

Last but not least on the list is the VGEBY Bike Chain. This is quite an underrated brand, not to mention that the quality is one of the best that you can get your hands on. The hollow-out design of this is superior and long-lasting.

The chain is compatible with 7-speed bicycles and 21-speed bikes for your needs. The design of this bike chain is pretty unique and universal which makes it easier for you to get the internal slit out for a comfortable installation process.

The bike chain is constructed of high-quality steel, which is durable, lasts through wear and tear, and also abrasion-resistant. The exterior of the chain comes with an extra layer of anti-rust coating, which prolongs the user experience.

One unique thing about the VGEBY Bike Chain is the fact that it is designed with anti-wear and stretch-proof functions that last through wear and tear without any complications. Also, it contributes to the enhanced mileage of the bike.

Pros

  • Durable steel construction
  • Easy to install
  • Compatible with multiple speed bikes
  • Coated with an anti-rust layer
  • Stretch proof

Cons

  • Nothing much to add

Buying Guide

If this is your first time buying a bike chain, you must have a better idea about the buying guide. Knowing the important factors help you decide which one would be the best one for your needs. Following are some of the best things that you need to remember:

1. Number of speeds

Considering the speed of the bike is extremely important for you to keep a check on it. A 6-speed bike won’t accommodate an 11-speed chain, so you need to invest in one that is compatible. For the chain to function properly, you need to find the ideal one that won’t be too snug or loose for your bike.

2. Durability

The material of the bike chain is another factor that you need to keep a check on. For the most part, there are steel and zinc alloy material, which are durability, rust-resistant and lasts through the wear and tear as well. So, when you are buying a chain, you need to look for the ones with rivets and extra durability.

3. Ease of installation

Last on the list of considerations is the installation process. Buy the options that are extremely easy to install and won’t make you question every last part of the bike. The ease of installation also ensures that the bike chain is easy to clean.

FAQs

1. Are KMC bike chains better than Shimano?

The difference between the KMC bike chain and Shimano is not that different. Both of the brands are quite reliable and have some of the most durable bike chains, so buying either won’t make you regret the purchase.

2. Are expensive bike chains worth it?

The price of a bike chain isn’t necessarily the most important factor. You need to look out for the quality and the durability of the bike chain before you look into the price point. 

3. How long do the bike chains last?

Bike chains’ durability depends on the usability of the bike chain. Generally, it can last between 500-5000 miles with rigorous usage, especially if the quality is good.

Conclusion

With so many different types of bike chains available in the market, finding the right option for your bikes is extremely important. Not only do you need to keep a check on the quality of the material but you also need to keep a check on the durability as well. We hope this article gives you all the details that you need to be mindful of.

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