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I've always wondered if chain alignment is necessarily the same as wheel alignment. There are areas where tolerances can cause a difference, like engine mounts, swing arm pivot, the front suspension assembly.
 

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So i took off my rear wheel today. and when i wanted to align the rear axle to the chain there was a major difference between the Motion Pro Chain Alignment tool vs the markings on the adjusting blocks. when you align the rear axle based on the adjusting block markings the motion pro tool would indicate that the rear axle is skewed to the right.

So then i tweak both the adjustment nuts so that the motion pro tool aligns with the chain but it gave me these reading that are off (see pictures below) on the axle blocks.

which one should i trust. right now i have it set to where i am going by the motion pro tool. any thought or suggestions? how do you guys do your axle to chain alignments?



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So i took off my rear wheel today. and when i wanted to align the rear axle to the chain there was a major difference between the Motion Pro Chain Alignment tool vs the markings on the adjusting blocks. when you align the rear axle based on the adjusting block markings the motion pro tool would indicate that the rear axle is skewed to the right.

So then i tweak both the adjustment nuts so that the motion pro tool aligns with the chain but it gave me these reading that are off (see pictures below) on the axle blocks.

which one should i trust. right now i have it set to where i am going by the motion pro tool. any thought or suggestions? how do you guys do your axle to chain alignments?



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A accurate $20 laser pointer is the best method. The block on my right is sound for a rough start. TST industries sells one for the left axel so you can toss 20 lbs of nothing of a license plate holder in the trash. They both Aline perfectly. Then I check with laser.
 

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I've always wondered if chain alignment is necessarily the same as wheel alignment. There are areas where tolerances can cause a difference, like engine mounts, swing arm pivot, the front suspension assembly.
I would have to believe so as any pivot point that can wear and cause a misalignment would be a factor just like vehicles.
 

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I bought MP tool last week. I've always used a rafter square (straight edge) against the sprocket on other bikes for final reference. I rotate the sprocket and check in 3 or more locations. The cush drive can throw it off a little on some bikes. On the FZ, the tag arm (not sure of the correct term) is in the way. By the way does anyone know what the ring on the sprocket is for? Just curious. Also Screan you have a point about wheel alignment. It is Important! So decentigrated wheel bearings or chain through the case.. Decisions Decisions. :LOL:
 

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So today I used the MP tool. With the swingarm marks set even, it showed the sprocket was not aligned with the chain. I then tried a longer pointer, 380mm long, which no surprise exaggerated the misalignment.

Adjusting the pointer to line up I was two long marks different side to side. This had me scratching my head, surely the factory marks couldn't be that far out?
After making an almighty mess trying to clean the chain I was out of patience so I set the swingarm marks even. I will have to revisit this another time. Surely if the swingarm marks were that far off the chain would be trying to climb off the rear sprocket.

Maybe I am over thinking this.
 

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Thanks about the ring info. The chain should not come off that quickly if tension is right. I'm a conveyor mechanic in a distribution facility and change a lot of chain/ sprocket sets. There not run at the speed bikes are but alignment is crucial to longevity. I've seen unaligned sets wear out in weeks instead of a couple years. Just my 2 cents.
 

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There's a lot of hate for the OEM adjustment blocks, but mine seem to jive with manual measurements. And my chain looks straight.

Is this one of those problems that the internet blows out of proportion, or am I just lucky?
 

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I was always taught that you slacken off both adjusters and shove the axle into the swingarm slot so it seats in the fully forward position, nip up the axle. Then finger screw in the adjusters till they meet resistance, back off the axle nut slightly, and turn the adjusters the same number of turns each side, half a turn at a time, as the thread on the adjusters is accurate, eg M6 = 1mm per turn. It takes ages, which is annoying. Once chain tension is correct, use "rack of the eye" to check chain run is straight.
I may check alignment using the plank method too.
I've never trusted the alignment marks on the bit of pressed tin.
 

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Discussion Starter #31 (Edited)
So today I used the MP tool. With the swingarm marks set even, it showed the sprocket was not aligned with the chain. I then tried a longer pointer, 380mm long, which no surprise exaggerated the misalignment.

Adjusting the pointer to line up I was two long marks different side to side. This had me scratching my head, surely the factory marks couldn't be that far out?
After making an almighty mess trying to clean the chain I was out of patience so I set the swingarm marks even. I will have to revisit this another time. Surely if the swingarm marks were that far off the chain would be trying to climb off the rear sprocket.

Maybe I am over thinking this.
this is the same problem i have. two notches difference when i aligned the rear sprocket to the chain with the mp tool. i assume the mp tool is more accurate so i have left the setup like that. but two notches difference and it is still bugging me to this day. i'm really tempted to buy that $80 usd profi cat laser chain alignment so that i would have peace of mind.
 

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this is the same problem i have. two notches difference when i aligned the rear sprocket to the chain with the mp tool. i assume the mp tool is more accurate so i have left the setup like that. but two notches difference and it is still bugging to this day. i'm really tempted to buy that $80 usd profi cat laser chain alignment so that i would have peace of mind.
I've bought some string so I am going to do a string wheel alignment and then compare with the MP Tool. I was tempted to buy the Profi Cat laser but I have to stop spending money on the bike.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
I've bought some string so I am going to do a string wheel alignment and then compare with the MP Tool. I was tempted to buy the Profi Cat laser but I have to stop spending money on the bike.
let me know the result thanks
 

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There are a lot of methods for aligning the rear wheel, if this photobucket link works (engage ad blocker), it will show you another, my preferred method now. --> Slide 1 <-- Advance the slide by selecting the pictures along the bottom. The arrows don't work for me anymore. Probably the ad blocker??
The gauge is a piece of scrap MDF or something that won't scratch the paint on the front wheel
The straight edge comes from needing a guide for a circular saw to cut plywood sheet. I think it is similar to this home despot item. I use a 4 foot spirit level to align the straight edge before use.

Good luck with whatever method you use :)
 

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I've always wondered if chain alignment is necessarily the same as wheel alignment. There are areas where tolerances can cause a difference, like engine mounts, swing arm pivot, the front suspension assembly.
ive also wondered how much the Cush drive helps self Center the sprockets... after all the sprocket carrier is essentially floating with rubber blocks in between the swing arm, which would also effect the chain alignment.
 
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...the rod is too short, i wished the length would be 3x longer then it would be easier to visually check the alignment.
I use a 12" long 1/8" drill bit that cost less than $10 such as this one at Amazon

The rod that comes with the Motion Pro tool is .15 inch diameter, a drill bit 1/8" = .125 and fits fine. You just tighten the screw that pushes the rod against the wall of the tool.

I have a few long drill bits, this 7/64 one shipped in a protective tubing case and also fits that tool.

Long bits should be absolutely straight. If they weren't straight they would wobble in the drill.

The rod that comes with the motion pro tool is only 7" long, so the 12" bit gives you another 5" which makes a lot of difference.
 

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right now i have it set to where i am going by the motion pro tool. any thought or suggestions? how do you guys do your axle to chain alignments?
I adjusted it with the MP alignment tool, then just to double check, I used a digital caliper and measured from the end of the swing arm to the axle block and each side was within 0.02mm of each other, however the swing arm markings were off by 1 full 'tick mark'.
Yeah, I know, the bike needs a cleaning.
160918
 

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ive also wondered how much the Cush drive helps self Center the sprockets... after all the sprocket carrier is essentially floating with rubber blocks in between the swing arm, which would also effect the chain alignment.
It is axially located by the spacers and axle though. It should be in the same plane as the wheel.
 
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So today I spent a few hours doing a string wheel alignment. The string showed the rear wheel was misaligned to the right which is what the MP tool was showing. Below are photos of my final swingarm markers. Left is between mark 2 and 3 and right is between 1 and 2.
This matches Seawalls markers, also out by about one marker, also misaligned to the right.
The MP is now aligned even with the longer pointer. What I did notice is that to the eye the MP was about aligned but the string alignment was still not spot on.
 
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