A bicycle is nothing without the chain that drives the bike. The bicycle is the sum of all of its parts and if one part of the bike is off, your bike isn’t going anywhere. The chain is the center of the drivetrain and is vital to shifting performance and powering your bike forward. With this in mind, the bicycle chain’s durability and compatibility are must haves when looking for a new or replacement chain. In other words, the chain you choose for your bike is an important choice and you shouldn’t take the choice lightly.
Now that we say that, it isn’t always easy to choose a bike chain with all the options out there. We wanted to put a list together of some of the more highly rated bike chains and what about those chains earned them a spot on our list. We hope this list makes the choice a little bit easier for the bike riders that visit this page.
Check out our list of highly rated bike chains below.
KMC Z51 Bicycle Chain (6 & 7 Speed, 1/2 x 3/32-Inch)
KMC has always been a leader in the bicycle chain and they have come out with another one with the Z51 for 6 and 7 speed bikes. For under $10, you are getting a great bike chain that will last. For what you will need out of a bike chain at a reasonable price, this chain will work great. Nothing fancy about it, just works.
– It fits 6/7/8 speed bikes
– It is 1/2 x 3/32 Brown
– It is IG compatible
– For 6, 7, and light 8 speed use
– Compatible with 6-12-18-21-24 speeds
ZHIQIU FSC F410 1-Speed Bicycle Chain Single (1/2 x 1/8-Inch, 104L)
This 1-speed bike chain is a solid choice for anyone not looking to spend a lot of money and is looking for quality. This is a single bicycle chain and does not fit variable speed bikes. It is made of manganese steel material and is heat treated for durability and toughness. In addition, it also comes with a one year warranty so there is nothing to worry about when you buy this chain.
– Model: Z410
– Speeds: Single(1-speed)
– Color: Silver, Gold, Brown
– Links: 104L
– Weight: 320g
– Size: 1/2″ x 1/8″
– Als: 8.6mm
– Node strength: 90kg
– Tensile strength: 820kg
– Compatible bikes: Fitness Series, Single Speed Chain
KMC X8.93 8-Speed Bike Chain
Here is another chain by KMC and it is for your 8 speed bike. This bicycle chain gets rave reviews and at just over $10, you are still saving a ton of money. The new X8.93 is shaped like a double x bridge for really smooth and fast shifting. It will also last you a long time with its stretch proof treatment and it is built for strength with mushroomed rivets. In addition to all this, you are still getting an outer plate chamfering that is upgraded for minimal tooth interference and it is built to avoid corrosion with its half nickel plated coating.
– 1/2 x 3/32 inch with 116 links at 330 grams
– Double X Bridge shape for super-fast and smooth shifting
– Inner plate chamfering and stretch proof treatment
– Half nickel plated with mushroomed riveting
– Outer plate chamfering and fits Campy, Shimano and SRAM 8 Speeds
Schwinn Bicycle Chain
The Schwinn company has been making great bikes for decades so is it any surprise that they are making a great bike chain too? This also comes in at around $10 so don’t expect to set the world on fire with this chain but you will be getting a nice, durable bicycle chain that will hold up over time. It is easy to adjust the length on the chain and has an anti-drop design with a heavy duty structure and fully nickel plated for protection.
– 1/2″ x 1/8″ with 112 links
– Anti-drop design with full nickel plated and heavy-duty structure
– Ideal for single speed bikes
– In display box
SRAM PC 1051 Chain
The PC 1051 Chain by SRAM is a hit in the reviews. This chain is a little more expensive but you get what you pay for. This chain has nickel plating to avoid corrosion on both the other and inner links for precise and smooth shifting. It is made for 10 speed drivetrains and is also made to work easily with the release/pickup points and tooth shaping on SRAM’s chainrings and cassettes. SRAM’s PowerLock connecting link makes it extremely easy to install without all the tools. Even more importantly, the PowerLock link is as strong, if not stronger, than any other link on the chain and will not hurt the performance of your shifting.
– Size: 10-speed
– Color: all one color
– Steel/Ni frame
– 0.5″ high
– 4.5″ wide
– Compatibility extends to industry standard 10-speed systems.
– Chains include power link
– 277- Grams
Shimano Ultegra CN-6701 Chain
The Shimano Ultegra CN-6701 Chain comes in at just under $30. Run this chain between the twistee and twister for smooth, reliable shifting performance and this is thanks to Shimano’s innovative Hyper Glide system. You find the perfect fit between the shift pins and ramps and the cassettes and chainrings. When you get this chain, you won’t miss any gears when riding hard.
For something so tough, it is very easy to install. You might find a lighter or cheaper chain but you find such a mix between weight, price and performance. You couldn’t ask for a better chain and we hope you won’t have to for a long period of time.
– Outer and inner plates have been redesigned
– 116 links – new shaped outer plate
– New shaped inner plate for smoother rear shifting
– Enhanced press-in construction for stable shifting
– 10-speed drivetrains
– Weight: 272 g for 116 links
– Optimize your Ultegra build
– 2 years Manufacturer Warranty