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  • Don’t skip out on your check.

    It’s easy to hop on the bike, hit the starter button and roll down the road or trail. But will your bike’s critical chain and sprockets be up to the task? Depending on riding conditions and riding habits, drivetrain components can wear at different rates. And the last thing you want to experience is unexpected failure miles from home. A simple 30-second pre-ride check before every ride is cheap insurance and will keep you informed about your bike’s drivetrain condition.

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  • How Sunstar® engineers are working to clean up their act


    Sunstar® engineers have been known to fling a little dirt and mud. Now don’t get us wrong; they’re good guys, but they really know how to dish the dirt. Especially how to dish it out and away from your bike’s critical drive components. They do it all in the interest of keeping your bike’s chain and sprockets cleaner and working better longer, no matter how filthy the ride gets. We thought you’d like to know how they managed to do that.

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  • When it comes to braking, your bike is biased


    Have you ever wondered why motorcycle and ATV manufacturers put large disks up front and smaller brakes in the rear? It’s a matter of designed-in brake bias. And that’s a weighty subject.

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  • Uncovering the secrets of advanced brake disc design.


    More than just metal hoops mounted to the wheel, those brake discs on your bike are packing a lot of secret performance. Here’s a quick lesson in advanced brake disc design.

    If you can’t stand the heat …

    Brakes rely on friction to do their job. But, in addition to creating impressive stopping power, that friction also generates boat loads of extreme heat that can quickly damage brake components and lead to brake fade and even brake failure. So how do racers push their bikes to the limit and still have strong braking power throughout a race? They select components that are designed to dissipate that heat efficiently, manage the expansion and contraction of steel braking components, and maximize the performance of brake pads.

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  • Identifying the characteristics of a bad sprocket


    Sprockets don’t start out as bad characters; they become that way. Over time, based on the environments they’re subjected to and the circles they run in sprockets can turn and wreak havoc on your bike’s performance and reliability. Taking a moment on a regular basis to visually check your machine’s chain wheels can tell you a lot about how they are likely to act today and in the future.

    Are your sprockets upstanding performers, or are they a bit shady? To answer that, let’s do a little profiling.

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  • Off Track! (Street Use Of Racing Pads)

    Off Track Racing

    Race pads on street bikes could slow you down. Or … not.

    Modern sport bikes have face-ripping power that quickly produces incredible speed. To match all of that swiftness, fast bikes also need to have exceptional braking systems to slow all of that forward momentum down just as quickly. Nobody knows that better than professional racers; the guys that push their machines to the limit lap after lap. Racers rely on high-performance brakes that will stand up to extreme heat and resist brake fade even when they’re glowing red.

    So, wouldn’t that kind of performance be perfect for the sport bike rider who wants maximum braking performance for the street? Surprisingly … no.

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  • The Dirt on Chain Wear

    dirty bike chain

    Dirt, mud and sand may be your chain’s worst enemy.

    Even Superman had his kryptonite—the one element that could bring the superhero to his knees. Dirt, mud and sand can weaken the most super bike chain just as easily.

    The modern motorcycle chain is designed to transfer power from the engine to the rear wheel with tremendous efficiency and smoothness. And, with proper care, it does a super job of that. Unfortunately, there is an arch enemy to the motorcycle chain: dirt. The dirt, mud and sand commonly found in popular riding environments can be as harsh as an industrial abrasive. Whether you’re riding in the dirt or on the street, those nasty elements can find their way onto your bike’s chain and wreak havoc on the rollers and seals that normally provide smooth and reliable operation. Dirt also accelerates wear of the chain and sprockets, shortening the service life of your drivetrain.

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  • The problem with dry, kinked drive chains.

    kinked drive chains

    Sometimes, despite our best intentions to maintain our bikes, we let things go a little longer than we should—especially if it’s an item that requires us to get down on the ground to take care of. Before we know it, that chain on our dirt bike or road bike is making noise and binding as we roll the bike around in the driveway. One look and the culprit is clear; the chain is a dehydrated mess.

    Is there any hope for that dry, neglected chain? Will some serious lubrication straighten out those kinks? Can a weather-worn chain ever be refreshed and trusted to deliver reliable performance? To answer that, let’s start with a little lesson in chain design.

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  • 4 Tips to Better Braking and Moves That Would Score a Perfect “10”

    Braking Techniques

    Nearly every rider wants more power. But power is only impressive if it can be managed with excellent braking. Done right, it’s as beautiful as a well-choreographed dance between rider and machine. Here are four ways to help you and your bike become better dance partners on the road or on the track.

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  • How to know when to replace sprockets

    replace sprockets

    The time to replace sprockets isn’t after the teeth are severely curled or worn down to a nub. Or when the chain starts jumping the cogs. To maintain top, reliable performance of your bike and to minimize damage to other components, sprocket replacement should happen long before then. But how can we know when those gearwheels have served their useful lifetime? Here are a few simple ways to know if your final drive is due for a swap out to new components.

    Look for the early warning signs

    Just as it’s best to see a doctor now and then for a checkup instead of waiting until you’ve got a serious problem, it’s a good idea to do regular checkups on your machine before things get bad (and expensive!). Taking just a few minutes each week to check out these handful of things will help you determine if you’ve got an unhealthy final drive.

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