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Discussion Starter #1
The OEM chain has a lot of internal friction. More than a lot more than a bicycle chain. More than I expected.

Do other brands have less friction? The fuel savings could be significant.

This all started with trying to track down an intermittent drive train noise, a click at a slower rate than wheel speed. Thinking it might be a stiff link in the chain I've been fondling it this afternoon and noticed the friction in the joints.
 

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Any Chain will carry some amount of friction and if you align and lub it properly , you should be able to reduce or keep friction at minimum. I use DID brand and so far been holding.
 

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How did you measure internal friction? How many miles on the chain? If the chain is clean the only friction should be coming from the o-rings.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I just used my hands bending each joint to try to find a binding link. Also I pulled the chain off and then spun the rear wheel, which rotated much more freely. There's some gear box friction in neutral but I didn't fiddle with trying to feel that.

From the little bit of internet searching I've done, it seems an O ring chain has more internal friction than an X ring. I may try a different chain.

Roller friction is another factor. I'll put more effort into getting lube into the rollers.
 

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I just used my hands bending each joint to try to find a binding link. Also I pulled the chain off and then spun the rear wheel, which rotated much more freely. There's some gear box friction in neutral but I didn't fiddle with trying to feel that.

From the little bit of internet searching I've done, it seems an O ring chain has more internal friction than an X ring. I may try a different chain.

Roller friction is another factor. I'll put more effort into getting lube into the rollers.
What year bike is the chain on? Has it been maintained from day 1?
I bought a used (1400 miles) 2016 V650, and the chain was neglected. I now have 11,000 miles on it, and it is nearly shot. I also have a 2016 V1K that I purchased brand new, just turned 26,000 miles on it, and the chain is not showin any signs of approaching the end of it's life.
Cleaning and lubing a chain in a timely manner is very important in my experience.
 

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What year bike is the chain on? Has it been maintained from day 1?
2015 with about 8k miles. Yes, it has been cleaned and lubed every 400 miles. Videos of people spinning the rear tire, like when lubing the chain, show a similar amount of drag as mine has. I'm thinking this is normal for the OEM chain, but boy is it inefficient.

I'll be on the lookout for a lower friction chain with a rivet master link to replace it with.
 

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How much chain slack are you running? I run on the looser end of OEM spec and feel anything close to 1" feels tight and offers more drag on the drivetrain
 
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The OEM chain has a lot of internal friction. More than a lot more than a bicycle chain. More than I expected.

Do other brands have less friction? The fuel savings could be significant.

This all started with trying to track down an intermittent drive train noise, a click at a slower rate than wheel speed. Thinking it might be a stiff link in the chain I've been fondling it this afternoon and noticed the friction in the joints.
If you check - you'll find that the racers do NOT use O-ring chains, and that's BECAUSE of the horse-power-robbing friction. For them - it's worthwhile to change chains each race. And bicycle chains don't have O-rings either.
 
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