On a rare occurrence this weekend I managed to completely destroy my SRAM PowerLink. So I went over to my LBS and got a new one; however, when I went to install it, it was super hard to close the link (I ended up giving up after a bit since it would only go half way).

After giving it a night and then trying again, I decided perhaps I had bent the chain links where the PowerLink was, so I bought a new chain. The chain came with the same PowerLink and I had the same problem. Eventually I got it but now I'm most likely going to need to saw it off (just kidding, will need pliers though) if it needs removing.

The only difference I can see is that they went from a gold colored plate to a black one, but it's still 10 speed (and the chain is SRAM as well). Anyone know if they have modified thickness, shape, or anything else?

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    How were you trying to close it? Mine wouldn't close unless I stood on the pedal while holding the brakes. Getting it off is another story. Apr 22, 2014 at 17:05
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    Check out Sheldon Brown's Page on chains. It says that for 10 speed chains, the SRAM PowerLink is called a "PowerLock", and that it is single use only. Posting this as a comment because I have no experience with 10 speed chains or PowerLinks.
    – Kibbee
    Apr 22, 2014 at 20:41
  • I modified an old pair of reversible snap ring pliers (not the type with changeable tips). With a small notches ground in the tip to catch the barrel, it installs and removes.
    – mikes
    Apr 22, 2014 at 21:36
  • @RitchMelton I was just doing it by hand, same as I've always done. Usually requires a healthy amount of force, but this was darn near impossible.
    – Aaron
    Apr 22, 2014 at 21:44
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    By hand it is impossible. I think the manual says to stand on the pedal while holding the brakes. Either way, that's what works for me. Apr 22, 2014 at 21:50

1 Answer 1


The new ones for 10-speed and 11-speed are frequently single-use. I buy KMC chains and half-links these days to avoid the possibility of that happening.

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