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Pedros Chain Checker Plus Review: This awesome gauge allows you to quickly determine if a chain is within proper specification and if it needs to be replaced.
- Measures pin to pin wear
- Doesn’t give false positives like others
- Includes more tools than just the gauge
- Lifetime warranty
- Not intuitive
- Only indicates “time to replace” not actual life left
Model: Pedro’s Chain Checker Plus
Price Range: NEW: $19.95-$12.95 USED: $5.10
Category: Bike Tools & Repair
Sub-Category: Multifunction Tools
Quality Level: Shop Quality
Features & Benefits
Many cyclists know that a worn chain can lead to missed shifts, slipped strokes or even worn cassettes. Pedro’s Chain Checker Plus, allows you to quickly determine if a chain is within proper specification. The tool (chain gauge portion) checks pin to pin wear and determines if the chain is within the .75% wear that usually indicates it’s time to replace the chain. It does this by measuring in 3 points instead of just 2 which isolates the pins in the measurement.
This is a “go”, “no-go” gauge meaning it will not measure the “stretch” but instead will tell you if it’s time to replace. That could mean that you are just outside of tolerance or way outside.
If the chain has reached the limit, it’s time to replace – before compounding damage ruins the cassette or chainrings. In addition to the chain gauge, Pedro’s added other useful features to the tool – including a chainring nut wrench and a chain hook tool, which is invaluable when reconnecting the chain.
Pedro’s Chain Checker Plus is constructed from tool-quality steel and comes with a lifetime warranty (major bonus points for Pedro’s tools).
With these features and benefits in mind, let’s chat quickly about how we tested it.
How was it flogged?
We tested this against several other chain gauges on the market. We knew our chain had about 2000 miles on it (it’s a premium chain from KMC) so the wear would be noticeable but just barely.
All other gauges told us it was time to replace, but the Pedro’s Chain Checker did not, which not only saves us money but also shows that isolating the pins gives you a more accurate measure of wear.
First Impressions, Opinions & Rating
Have you ever watched one of those action thrillers where the protagonist is captured and taken to a dungeon, or strapped to mattress coils and prepped for torture? Then the torturer comes in and opens his bag of “tools” and lays them out slowly before the prisoner – in my version of that scene, one of the first tools he would pull out and place on the table would be Pedro’s Chain Checker Plus!
This thing looks like some sort of out-of-this-world torture device, but the reality is further from that. This tool delivers on so many levels.
After getting over the initial shock of its looks, it’s easy to see that this tool does much more than just check your bike’s chain wear.
There’s the obvious gauge portion which measures chain stretch within .75% wear (but not in .5% increments, which is one of the main complaints from many reviewers).
Also included is a chainring nut tool which is useful in that you don’t have to buy a separate tool for that (and when you need one, you definitely NEED one) and it also includes chain hooks which are helpful when it’s time to put the chain back together. The hooks work by holding the chain together allowing you to re-insert a pin or install a Missing Link.
After using all the various tools included we couldn’t really find anything to complain about other than the price and maybe the fact that it doesn’t actually measure the chain wear but instead it just identifies if it needs replaced. Not really a deal breaker, but to some people it was annoying.
Finally, the one thing that consistently came up was the fact that this tool is not immediately intuitive. After you mess with it for a few minutes you can see how it works (and the numbers “1”, “2” and “3” help identify the steps you need to take) and since it functions differently than some of the other chain gauges on the market it’s not intuitive.
Rating: We’ve given Pedro’s Chain Checker Plus a 4.9-star rating. This tool does everything it should and more. The price is higher than most but it’s well worth it for the “added” tools that you don’t have to purchase if you get this one.
Who should get this?
Finally, we know you really would like to know if it’s right for you – so here’s who should buy the Pedro’s Chain Checker Plus: Anyone who rides a bike enough to justify it.
Most standard chains will last around 3000km (~1900 miles) for road bikes if maintained properly. If you ride enough to require a chain replacement more than once a year then you will want to get this. Otherwise, it’s a good idea to just replace your chain each year and your cassette every couple (again, that’s only if you don’t ride enough to replace it during the season).
Have you tried it? Add your rating and comments below!
Pedro’s, as they say on their website, has been enjoying the Ride since 1989. What started as a single product business, with their first synthetic lubricant, has culminated to a powerhouse brand today. They do this by remembering why we all ride – because we enjoy it!
“Whether commuting by bike to escape traffic or stay in shape, exploring trails and mountains with friends, pushing mental and physical limits in a weekend race, or taking a two-wheeled adventure with the family – the bicycle allows pure enjoyment like few other things in life. At Pedro’s, we are committed to keeping your bicycle running right by offering innovative, unique, and high quality cleaners, lubricants, tools, and accessories that are safe for you, your family, and the environment, so you enjoy today’s ride…and tomorrow’s.” Visit the Pedro’s site here