Why Does My Mountain Bike Skip Gears?
Why does my chain keep skipping or slipping gears? This is a common question amongst many riders or bikers out there. Worry no more because today will be going to address the possibilities of causes in this guide.
Why Does My Mountain Bike Skip Gears?
The short response is, it is a problem with any of the following: rear and front chain, chain, cassette, as well as derailleurs.
Causes of Mountain Biker Skipping Gears
There are a lot of things why it happens, and some of them are simple adjustments.
Soiled Chain and Sprockets
One reason why chain skips are the buildup of dirt on the sprockets. If the chain oil and grime combine on the sprocket, it leaves a very thick black mixture on this part. If you use it without cleaning the bike, it will lead to slipping and skipping the chain.
The derailleur is Out of Proper Place.
If the derailleur is out of alignment, it will lead to unnecessary tension on the chain and cause it to slip gears while riding. It’s easy to know if this is the main problem. Look at the rear wheel, see the gear cog which the chain is on and look under it. Check if the pulley is rightly aligned with the gear?
Derailleur Pulley Cage is Bent
If the derailleur pulley cage is bent, it will give the same tension as the pulley cage is not in proper alignment. To see if this part is not in line, please check the rear wheel head-on. This will determine if the derailleur is not in line. But, if this is the problem, the only thing you can do is buy a new one.
This is also one reason why your mountain bike is skipping. The teeth on the gear wouldn’t line and lead to the bouncing of the chain. A damaged chain is basically expanding, so the gap between the links is no longer what it must be. You can measure the distance by using a checker tool.
A damage cassette refers to the sprockets worn down far enough to lessen the efficiency. Checking visually is not suggested as it needs a special tool. On the other hand, there’s a sprocket wear indicator equipment to try once the cassette is damage. To utilize this, you must eliminate the rear wheel from the chain and frame. Put the chain links around the sprocket, utilize the flat portion as a level, and then pull it down. In case moving the first links is easy, this shows that this is not the main issue.
What to Do To Avoid Chain from Skipping or Slipping
The skipping chain has many solutions that you can do in the comfort of your home. There is no need to call a mechanic to assess and check the problem. You can do it by yourself. All you need to do is to follow this guide.
Clean Your Sprockets
Maybe one of the simplest solutions is to clean the sprockets of your mountain bike. Perhaps, this needs some elbow grease as well as lots of persistence. On the other hand, check that the derailleurs are in line over the sprockets if re-oiled and cleaned. If not, keep onto the next part once you give your mountain bike a try and know when the chain skips.
Derailleur Is Not In Line
Once the derailleur is not in a proper alignment, there’s a nut that links the shifter cable to this part. All you need to do is adjust it, and it will move the pulleys over one way.
Derailleur is Bent
A curved or twisted derailleur usually occurred on the bike’s trail. It is highly recommended to curve it back in line. If the issue persists, you’ll have to replace the entire derailleur. There are many guides available on how to do it.
The lone way to repair the damage is cassette is to buy a new one. Here, you will need a lockring tool. Get rid of the wheel from the mountain bike, then take out the skewer ( a part that holds the tire to the frame of the bike). Use the tool to unscrew the lockring. Pull off the old cassette; put each sprocket of the new cassette on individually, matching the grooves up in the approved manner. Screw back the lock ring on and put back the skewer. Put back the tire on the mountain bike and then tighten and put on the chain.
Some mountain bikes come with freewheel assembly rather than a cassette. The process is almost identical except that the freewheel really screws on the wheel rather than slides onto the bearing. Don’t worry as it is easy to do. All you need to do is to follow the steps below.
Take off the wheel
Get rid of the chain from the sprocket
Get rid of the skewer
To loosen it, the lockring tool, which will go along with the grooves on the freewheel.
Detach the old freewheel
Put the new one
Replace the skewer
Put back the wheel on the mountain bike
Realign the chain
All the things mentioned can and do cause the mountain bike’s chain to skip and slip gear. There are simple ways on how to fix it. I hope the tips mentioned above will be able to assists you fix any problem like this so you will have a safe and enjoyable ride.
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