Hey gang, I'm in the process of adjusting the chain and aligning the rear wheel at the same time, but ran into a conflict. Right now alignment is like factory, but the right swingarm block is a hair farther back than the left (maybe 1/2mm at the most). But a bigger problem is the MotionPro chain alignment tool is not perfect, although close. But to make chain alignment perfect, I'd have to adjust the right block even more rearward, adding to the gap between left and right blocks. What the heck should I do? It'd still be less than a millimeter difference, but want to hear from the experts what should I do. I could leave it as is, which is in-between the 2. If I adjust the axle/wheel according to the swingarm (are those marks really accurate?), the chain would be out of whack more than it is now, but don't know how critical that is, since the chain has play within the sprocket. Right now it's minimal. Please enlighten me . Thanks in advance for your suggestions.
Last Edit: Jan 16, 2019 14:38:29 GMT -7 by elptxjc
Need to summon my wife to do the string alignment method more accurate, but so far the wheel seems a bit off, in accordance with the swingarm marks. In other words, if I adjust the wheel to the swingarm marks, it'd be close to perfect... BUT the chain would be misaligned. Right now the chain is very, very little misaligned, and the swingarm marks very little off. Just like I said earlier, current/factory alignment is between the 2 rationales. Do you guys think the factory set it up that way on purpose? My other doubt is how accurate are the blocks themselves. Noticed they're different, and the left one has a curved edge, whereas the right has a very sharp 90º cut. If I should measure the left block before the curvature, it'd be spot on. But where it ends is further behind, as I mentioned. Anyway, will update this post when I recheck the string method with my wife measuring behind the front tire, to make sure handlebar is dead straight, so I can check the differences behind the rear tire. Thanks.
EDIT: My alignment of the front wheel was spot on, so the rear tire is indeed a bit off. My wife measured it, and the right side behind the rear wheel is exactly 2mm less than the left measurement, so it's in reality 1mm off. Therefore, the swingarm blocks/marks seem to be correct in relation to the wheel. Problem is chain is not aligned with the wheel. So the million dollar question is: WHICH IS THE BEST WAY TO ALIGN THE DAMN THING? Ha ha. Hopefully some of you can also take a look at your bikes and report findings, to hopefully arrive at a consensus. Thanks gang.
Last Edit: Jan 16, 2019 16:07:37 GMT -7 by elptxjc
Don't overwork it. The factory marks will never be perfect but I always find them to be 'close enough'. If your bike tracks fine now just adjust your chain by adjusting the bolts the same amount of turn(s) which will keep the alignment approximately the same. I've never had any issues with undue wear on the rear tire or the bike tracking left or right. In my experience it is not super critical.
Last Edit: Jan 16, 2019 16:02:42 GMT -7 by evitzee
Hey, you missed my edit on the post above yours. Makes sense, but curious which is the more desirable way to align them. So far I'm leaving it with the factory alignment, but curious which is the better method. Or in-between the 2, meaning the way it is. Hopefully some of you won't mind checking your bikes and report findings. But yes, I agree it shouldn't be that critical. It's either the tire going to wear more, or the chain. Or both a little. We need to pick. Ha ha. Seems to me the sprocket is not parallel to the wheel, but it might be tolerance differences. Curious about other bikes. Finally, the chain seems to have enough play that the misalignment caused by getting the rear wheel straight might not wear the chain more, while wearing the rear tire less. Thoughts? Thanks gang.
Last Edit: Jan 16, 2019 16:14:37 GMT -7 by elptxjc
That's what I was thinking. By the way, if I push the chain within the rear sprocket to the other side, it shows aligned, so the misalignment is very minor. Therefore, I think I'm going to align the rear wheel, and the chain should be just a hair out of whack. Will update this post tomorrow when I'm done. Not a big deal at all, but just wanted to see how other bikes were from the factory. Seems like the swingarm marks/blocks are correct (or very close). Thanks for the help.
Okay, I'm done with the adjusting. Rear wheel is perfectly aligned now with 2 extra 1/6th turns on the right bolt, and the swingarm markings are exactly the same too, so I feel better with that alignment. The chain is nearly perfect, and as I suspected, still has plenty of sideways play at the bottom of the sprocket, meaning it shouldn't cause any extra sprocket or chain wear at all. The MotionPro rod is only a couple of mm off when projected until I can see the chain, so well within safety margins (I bet manufacturers never have both sprockets perfectly aligned, with the wheel perfectly aligned as well; there must be a tolerance we don't know of, which I bet is much larger than mine, and that's why the chain is loose sideways on the sprockets). But just like redgecko59 said, it's best to have the rear wheel perfectly aligned, and that's what I did. At least we now know the swingarm markings should make that happen, so you guys don't have to go thru the string method to check alignment, like I did. Hope this helps. Now to lube the damn chain .
Last Edit: Jan 17, 2019 12:32:29 GMT -7 by elptxjc