This review was written by Daniel Loncher. He has been wanting to try out the ConneX 11SX Chain for some time now and finally pulled the trigger, let's hear his thoughts!
I’ve been wanting to try this chain out for a while now. I’m glad I did as it has meet all my expectations. The first thing you will notice is that it is 100% stainless steel and it is high quality. After a ride in the rain or mud the chain won’t develop surface rust like the Shimano or SRAM chains I’ve run in the past.
I am running a 1x11 SRAM setup and I have three brand new chains that I rotate through so that everything wears evenly. One chain is the SRAM PC-XX1 and the other two are the Wippermann 11 speed SC chains. All chains are brand new and mated up to a brand new SRAM 11 speed cassette and brand new narrow wide front chain ring. The shifting quality up and down the cassette is the same as the SRAM, perhaps a bit smoother when going to an easier gear than the SRAM chain.
The quality of the Wippermann chain is noticeably better in the hand with more detailed rounding on the links. Then there is the Wippermann ConneX link, the reason I bought the chain to begin with. You can remove it with no tools and it doesn’t need to be replaced every time like the SRAM quick link does. Sure this is an expensive chain but Wippermann does sell cheaper models. The ConneX link makes maintenance much easier meaning you are likely to do a proper chain removal and cleaning more often, extending the life expectancy of the drivetrain.
In my experience, MTB drivetrains are killed by dirt wearing out the chain links which then "shark tooths" the teeth profile on the gears leading to poor shifting and chain slipping. Rotate three chains into service on a brand new drivetrain and your cassette and chainring will last till all three chains are at their service limit.
Be careful to install the ConneX link in the correct direction or it will bind when moving over the cassette gear and through the derailleur pulleys. Also pull the chain to clean it and get all the dirt out before re-lubing. Brake cleaner or a solvent solution works well, then air dry or use compressed air before re-lubing or waxing. Waxing seems to work best for me because it doesn’t attract dirt like most lubes. Again, dirt is what wears the chain links and thus your drivetrain gears.
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