# Are all 9 speed chains compatible with all 9 speed systems?

5 min read

##### Asked by: Fernando Marea

## Are all 9 speed chains compatible?

Chains for 9-Speed Bicycles

Chains for 9-Speed Drivetrains are 6.7mm wide and **work well regardless of manufacturer**; Shimano, SRAM and Campagnolo. Front chainrings are less sensitive to the width of a chain, therefore SRAM 9-speed drivetrains can even use 10-speed chains.

## Are Shimano and SRAM 9 speed chains interchangeable?

**SRAM’s cassettes and chains are compatible with all of Shimano’s groupsets, and vice versa**. Likewise, Shimano and SRAM buyers have the freedom to mix different levels of chains and cassettes so long as they are designed for the same kind of transmission.

## What size is a 9 speed chain?

Single-speed chains have an inner width of 1/8″ (3.175 mm). Multi-speed chains, from 5 to 8 speeds have an inner width of 3/32″ (2.38 mm). Multi-speed chains from 9 to 12 speeds have an inner width of **11/128″ (2.18 mm)**. An “exotic” standard for freight bicycles is a chain width of 5/32″ (4 mm).

## Are bike chains universal?

**No.** **Not all makes and models of bike chains fit on all bikes**. Most modern bike chains are made to the one-half inch pitch, but this dosn’t mean all chains fit all bikes. In order to be as effective as possible, a chain must be suited to the type of bicycle being ridden.

## Will a 9 speed chain work on a 10 speed derailleur?

Registered. The short answer here is “no”, but you may or may not notice (or you may notice but not be bothered by it). **Using a 10 speed chain on a 9 speed cassette (or an 11 on 10) works because the chain is slightly narrower.**

## How do I know which chain to buy for my bike?

When selecting a chain, **the first consideration is the number of rear sprockets**. The rear cog sets have been made with 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, or 12 sprockets. As the number of cogs on the rear hub increases, the spacing between cogs tends to be reduced.

## Do KMC chains work with SRAM?

One of the main advantages of KMC chains is that **they are compatible with Sram**, Campagnolo, and Shimano drivetrains.

## Can you mix SRAM and Shimano drivetrain?

Can you put a Shimano chain on a Sram drivetrain and vice versa? **Yes and no**. As long as the speeds match, it theoretically should work. In the real world, we have noticed that Shimano chains on Sram cassettes and chainrings tend to not line up with the teeth on the cogs perfectly.

## Is there a difference between Shimano and SRAM chains?

**The inner links of the Shimano chain are so much longer, that the chain binds on a Sram chain ring and the 50t “Eagle” gear of the cassette**. You may get away with a new Shimano chain on used Sram sprockets, but new or even lightly worn the compatibility is less than ideal.

## Can 11 speed chain work on 9 speed cassette?

Because the INNER spacing of chains remain the same for different speed classes of chains, **an 11s chain will run on 9s chainrings just fine**.

## Will 8 speed chain work with 9 speed cassette?

As for using an 8 speed chain on a 9 speed cassette, **it is less than optimal**. You might get lucky and it will work acceptably with some parts combinations. But it is the wrong part, no way around it. The chain is too wide and will tend to make noise, run rough and stick between the sprockets.

## Are 8 speed and 9 speed chains the same?

**7, 8, and 9 speed chains have the same inner width, but 9 speed chains have thinner outer plates for a thinner overall chain**. So while a 9 speed chain works fine on a 7 or 8 speed drivetrain, it will be a weaker chain that tends to “stretch” faster.

## Can I use a 10 speed Shimano chain on a 9 speed cassette?

**You can run a 10sp chain on 9sp set up, its not recommended but yes it will work**. Our KMC x10sl-Ti chains are +/- 241g at 112 links and the KMC x9sl-Ti is +/- 265g at 116 links. I have yet to try a 10sp chain on the 9sp drivetrain but I think Ill be putting on the new KMC x10SL-DLC chain on the bike.

## Will a 9 speed chain work on a 7 speed cassette?

A chain one size narrower than standard rarely presents any problem. Thus, **you can use a “9-speed” chain with a 7-speed or 8-speed system**, or a “10-speed” chain with a 9-speed system.

## Will a 9 speed chain work on a 7 speed cassette?

A chain one size narrower than standard rarely presents any problem. Thus, **you can use a “9-speed” chain with a 7-speed or 8-speed system**, or a “10-speed” chain with a 9-speed system.

## Will an 8 speed chain work on a 9 speed cassette?

As for using an 8 speed chain on a 9 speed cassette, **it is less than optimal**. You might get lucky and it will work acceptably with some parts combinations. But it is the wrong part, no way around it. The chain is too wide and will tend to make noise, run rough and stick between the sprockets.

## Are 8 speed and 9 speed chains the same?

**7, 8, and 9 speed chains have the same inner width, but 9 speed chains have thinner outer plates for a thinner overall chain**. So while a 9 speed chain works fine on a 7 or 8 speed drivetrain, it will be a weaker chain that tends to “stretch” faster.

## Will 11 speed chain work with 9 speed cassette?

**A 11 speed chain should work okay on 9 speed chainrings**.

## What is the difference between a 9 speed chain and a 10 speed chain?

The main difference between a 9 speed chain and a 10 speed chain is that **the 10 speed chain is thinner in width**, because of the 10 speed cassette, which in turn means the chain is lighter.

## What is faster 9 speed or 11-speed?

**11-speed cassettes are absolutely not faster than 9-speed cassettes**. The factor that determines the speed of your bike is you; the rider. Putting an 11-speed cassette on your bike will not magically produce more speed.