I'm refurbishing a 1988 Raleight winner with an original worn chain. It has a 5 speed rear freewheel and a 2 cog crank. Advise please on which chain I need and where to purchase.

  • Sorry we can't and won't tell you where to purchase items. That's of limited long-term use, and its highly regionalised. This website is used globally. – Criggie Jan 22 '17 at 23:10

You need a standard 3/16" wide 5 speed chain. They're relatively uncommon now-days, so you may end up with a 6-7-8 speed chain which should be adequate.

Downside is fitting a new chain to a worn cassette/freewheel will probably run even worse. Do consider fitting a new freehub too.

Lastly, check the front chainrings for wear. If the teeth are worn-looking then consider a hat-trick and replace all three.

At this point you might be looking at more cost than the bike is worth, at least as far as new parts go. You'll have to make a call if its financially worth doing.

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    Are you sure you don't mean 3/16"? 3/8" would be absolutely huge going by the fact that single speed chains are 1/8". I had a larger chain on my fixie before, nit surecif it was 5/32 or 3/16, but it looked absolutely massive next to a regular chain. – Kibbee Jan 23 '17 at 0:15
  • @Kibbee Good spotting, fixed - I've been sorting sockets lately and am sick of imperial fractions. That's the only cause I can think of. Yes 3/16 is derailleur chain because it has to bend a bit every revolution. 1/8" is for single-chainline bikes (so single speed, IGH wheels, and tandem timing chain) It might be found on BMXs too, but never on cheaper kids bikes. – Criggie Jan 23 '17 at 0:20
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    You can easily find 5 speed freewheels from Sunrace -- they're only about 10 dollars. Add in another 10 dollars for an 8 speed chain, and its just 20 dollars for the stuff you need. – Batman Jan 23 '17 at 0:26
  • Yeah 5 speeds tended to pre-date hyperglide so they're more robust uniglide, or plain-cut teeth. So there's a good chance the chainrings are okay. If they're are worn badly, new chainrings will cost more than another used bike. So it pays to check that all before starting the updates and helps avoid good-money-after-bad. That said, I'd probably buy a used bike as a donor and keep the nice old bike on the road. – Criggie Jan 23 '17 at 1:22

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