My new chain (Shimano 5800 HG600 105) comes with a pin inserted in the outer plate as seen in the picture below.

The Shimano dealer's manual makes no mention of this scenario.

How to install such a chain?

Pre-inserted pin on new Shimano 5800 HG600 105 chain

  • 2
    You use a chain tool -- the same tool you'd use to cut the chain to proper length. Jul 23, 2017 at 21:59
  • I think the OP means that the manual that came with the chain does not show that kind of connecting pin, it only shows separate pins with a break-away tapered pilot. Jul 23, 2017 at 22:02
  • Did the chain come with separate connecting pins as shown in the manual, or in this Park Tool page parktool.com/blog/repair-help/… ? Jul 23, 2017 at 22:03
  • You're supposed to get a special rivet with shimano that you push in to close the chain. I'd just push the rivet out with my chain tool like I'd shorten a chain, and move on with life. Or, just cut the chain as I would from that side.
    – Batman
    Jul 23, 2017 at 23:39
  • Thanks all for the replies. @ArgentiApparatus The chain didn't come with a manual, I searched for one online. Thank you for the Park Tool link.
    – Jelefra
    Jul 24, 2017 at 20:12

3 Answers 3


Shimano 11 speed (5800) should be assembled with a Shimano chain connector pin. The pin is pushed through and the end breaks off. 9/10/11 speed chains outer plates are too narrow to reuse pins. There is literally no margin for error. You actually break part of the pin when you push it out, as such it won't stay in place if reinserted. A missed shift can easily pry the outer plate off the pin causing the chain to fail.

I suspect you were sold a used or pre-installed chain, where they pushed the pin partially as a "service" to you, but if you reinsert that pin in all likelihood the chain will fail at some point in the future.

connector pin Shimano chain connector pin


The online retailer (guessing chainreaction) may also be selling an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) chain:

CRC supply OEM chains which have a short rivet pin partially inserted ready for use. Never had a problem since I learnt how to use this rivet. You have to be careful that you get it in the right position first time when using your chain tool, as there is no room for error, when compared to the long pin type of rivet. If you try to adjust the chain pin it soon comes loose. It isn't just a removed pin, as these are always too loose to use, as part of the rivet shoulder breaks away during removal. Mind you it's always handy to have another way of joining the chain if you don't get the pin right first time. I find that you have to just take your time when pushing the pin through the last bit to avoid going too far through. -- Forum Thread

I have never personally had access to OEM (equipment purchased by bicycle manufacturers) so I cannot confirm whether or not this is how the chains come. Either way, the forum thread suggests assembling with these short pins can be difficult (other answers discuss how to do this). You may wish to purchase a connector pin as this is how Shimano intends home mechanics to assemble chains.

To clarify this short pin may not be the same as a pin that has been pushed out on an assembled chain. But it is hard to verify what the OP has.

  • I'll get in touch with the shop (a fairly well-know ecommerce shop and bike manufacturer (not sure if I should name it)) and see what they say. For information the chain didn't come in Shimano-branded packaging. It came in a simple transparent plastic sheet. Based on the reviews their customers received their chain similarly packaged. Thank you for your reply.
    – Jelefra
    Jul 25, 2017 at 20:24
  • @jelefra It was likely taken off a display bike. It is also possible to buy these connector pins separately, I would do that if you don't want to go through the hassle of trying to get a refund. It you haven't assembled the chain yet, I would get the right pin.
    – Rider_X
    Jul 25, 2017 at 20:52
  • @jelefra another possibility is that this is a OEM chain being sold to a consumer. In this case the pin may be okay to use. I personally do not know one way or the other as I don't have access to OEM equipment. I updated my answer with more details.
    – Rider_X
    Jul 25, 2017 at 21:04
  • The shop confirmed that the chain is new, direct from Shimano.
    – Jelefra
    Jul 27, 2017 at 22:14

You use a chain tool to push the pin into place after making sure the chain is the right length by shortening it (by removing links on the other side of the chain as the master pin).

Then you'd close the loop by pushing in the master pin. Here are a couple of images of chain tools putting in pins:

enter image description here

Chain tools are relatively cheap but make sure it is compatible with the "speed" of your bike. I.e., if you have a nine speed chain make sure you have a nine speed compatible chain tool. This is because the diameter of the pin on the tool that pushes in the link pin has to be smaller than the bushings of the chain. Lower 'speed' tools have wider pins and might damage your chain bushings.


See the image of a chain tool pushing the pin in

chain tool

That might be punching the pin out but pretend what you see there is the pin

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