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Old 09-11-2009, 06:27 PM
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Kaptain Krunch Kaptain Krunch is offline
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Default #530 chain, #520 chain, #50 sprockets?

Im working on a shifter kart, and need to get some sprockets. I have a source of #50 sprockets in all the sizes i need and fairly cheap too. Im wondering if 530/520 (need two chain, jackshaft) chain will fit on a #50 sprocket? As far as i know the only difference between 520, 530, and 50 is the width and that the pitch is the same.
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Old 09-11-2009, 07:13 PM
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The pitch of a #50, #520 and #530 chain are the same and is 5/8" link to link.

#50 is indicated by ANSI standards and has a 3/8" width.
#520 is indicated by the motorcycle industry and has a 1/4" width.
#530 is indicated by the motorcycle industry and has a 3/8" width, just like #50 chain.

I believe all three have a 0.400" roller diameter.

If the sprocket you have is #50 you can use #50 or #530 chain without issue, as they're essentially the same - pitch and width. #520 chain is narrower, and may not fit on the particular sprocket you are considering as it might be to wide. Sometimes it fits but binds on the sprocket making it difficult to release the chain on the slack side, causing excessive wear on the rollers, link sides, and sprocket.
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Old 09-11-2009, 07:39 PM
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Awesome! thank you so much, just what i wanted to hear. The main sprocket i need is one to fit the 530 chain, i have some other 520 sprockets and chain that i can use together.
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Old 09-11-2009, 09:32 PM
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You're welcome. While not relevent to your particular question, I'll talk about the reverse issue, whereas the chain is wider than the sprocket for the benefit of others.

If one has a #520 sprocket and uses a #50 or #530 chain, there will be 1/8" of unused link width that can allow the chain to not land centered on the sprocket which will wear the chain and sprocket out much quicker than a properly matched chain/sprocket set. If the chain is old or stretched out from heavy use, sometimes the chain not only will slide to one side of the sprocket (straight misalignment) but it might also tilt laterally, which will wear out the rollers of the chain as well as dig into the cavity between the teeth, thus making the sprocket a smaller diameter over time. You know what happens when you have slack in the chain, and these two problems will feed each other until it self destructs.

Of course all of what I presented on chains thus far is valid information, however may or may not be a concern in the 5HP level typically found in go-karts. That's a question you more seasoned kart-ers need to figure out ;-)
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Old 09-11-2009, 09:42 PM
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Well, I'm going to be in the 36hp range with this engine, so I'm hoping to get the chain situation done right. I may just buy all brand new chain and sprockets so i dont cause uneven wear from using half new and half old stuff.
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Old 09-11-2009, 10:11 PM
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With that power level, I would seriously consider new sprockets and chains. At that point, why be cheap.

As sprockets wear out the chain pitch diameter shrinks a bit and allows for increasing amounts of chain slop, which of course abuses the chain and wears it out as well.

If you must retain used parts at least replace the sprocket on the engine with the chain.

For more durability, you might consider nitrided or case-hardened sprockets. If you have an oxy-acetelyne torch you can actually do it yourself. You heat the steel sprocket to about 1400-1450 degrees and keep it at that temperature for a while, then quench it in a pot of pre-heated peanut oil. Peanut oil has a very high flash temperature so it won't burst into flames when you put in the hot steel. The oil should be at about 150-180 degrees or so. Once the steel is in, stir the oil for about 3-4 minutes to let the steel cool off, then remove the steel and let it air cool. You can repeat a few times if you wish, each time will add a little more oil hardening but much less than the first try.

You can also temper the steel to a usable hardness by tossing it into a deep fryer believe it or not, though it takes a bit longer but maybe you have a deep fryer handy.

Another nifty substance you can quench steel with is sugar - sugar contains a lot of carbon molecules and that's what miner's did a zillion years ago when they used pick-axes to do everything. They'd heat their tools to cherry red, then dump huge bags of sugar onto the steel.
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