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I recently purchased a Diadora Orbita bike from SportChek. As I was riding it my front derailleur got bent and now I can't use my pedals. So, my question is, can I remove the Shimano FD-TY18 front derailleur without unlinking the chain? I don't have a chain breaker, so my only option seems to be to remove the derailleur without unlinking the chain. Is it possible?

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    Some derailers are riveted together, some are held together with screws. If you can find a suitable replacement that is screwed together you can cut the existing one (hacksaw or heavy-duty tin snips). But "breaking" and reassembling a chain is not terribly difficult, if you have a good tutorial and take your time. – Daniel R Hicks Aug 18 '15 at 12:29
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    The only reasonable advice is that you should get your self chain tool anyway, and you should learn how to unlink the chain. – Davorin Ruševljan Aug 18 '15 at 13:34
  • Bear in mind that if you want to put a new derailluer on you will probably want to take more care than removing the bent one, and this will probably mean breaking the chain anyway. – user814425 Aug 18 '15 at 14:24
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    You're going to need a chain tool to install a new chain anyway (or put the new chain through the new derailleur). So, go buy a chain tool. – Batman Aug 18 '15 at 17:10
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    Check to see if the chain has a master link, in which case you don't need a chain tool. Google "master link" to see what one looks like. If the chain has a master link, watch some youtube videos on how to disconnect them, it's not obvious. – obelia Aug 18 '15 at 18:08
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The pictures I've found of the FD-TY18 look like the pin across the rear of the cage is riveted in place. So, you probably can't remove it without a bit of work – through if the derailleur is damaged beyond repair it probably won't be too hard to either pry it apart (try holding with a screwdriver and twisting one side with pliers) or to cut it (and do double check that there isn't a screw there).

But before you do all of that, check your chain carefully. Many chains these days are connected with a master link which makes it easy to split the chain without special tools.

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    If it's really beyond repair you might want to use a saw. But then a small chain tool isn't that expensive and may be handy in your saddle bag along with a couple of spare pins. – Carel Aug 18 '15 at 7:41
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Very easy!
Get a good cutter and slice the derailleur cage. (Without a picture can't say it for sure, but I bet your derailleur isn't repairable if it bent so much that it prevent your crank movement).

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If you've got a Shimano chain it's unlikely that you've got a master link as most Shimano chains come with a one-time use connecting pin. You can pop this back out with a chain tool. It's not practical to easily remove it without the tool. You can replace with a kmc missing link (make sure you match it for the right chain) for easy disassembly in the future.

6/7/8 speed chains may just use regular pins which can be manipulated carefully with a chain tool and pins can be reused if not pushed completely out.

If the derailleur is riveted closed, you won't be able to take it off the bike without breaking the chain or destroying the derailleur. If you're going to replace it, then you'll need to break the chain anyway to put the new derailleur on. So if that's the case, then just buy a chain tool and new derailleur.

However, if you're willing to play with it a bit, you might be able to bend the front derailleur cage back in to place. Use a pair of needle nose pliers to flatten out any kinks and try and bend it back to the right shape. I've done this a couple times after some poor footwork had me kicking the front derailleur cage. It may work, it may not, it may take some tweaking, but it might save you the hassle of replacing it (or at least make your bike rideable till you can get it fixed proper). No guarantee this will work in your case as I'm not sure how bad the bend is.

If you can't ride without chain rub after trying to bend it back, you're better off replacing the front derailleur. Get a bike shop to help you if you don't have the tools.

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