While “one at a time” and “correctly” seemed to be the most frequent—and apparently most amusing—answers from our engineering team, after some consideration we thought this deserved an answer that was a bit more practical.

One mistake commonly made when counting the number of pitches in a strand of roller chain is to include only exterior link plates. By counting only the exterior plates, only half the number of pitches end up being counted.

So then, how should the number of pitches be counted? Taking a quick time out for a review of definitions—the pitch of a roller chain is the distance between the center of one pin to the center of the next pin. To count the number of pitches in a strand of chain, we would start our count from the first pin on one end of the piece of chain and move to the next pin, which would be one pitch, and then on to the next pin, which would be another pitch, and so on until the end of the strand of chain is reached.

Here’s a quick visual to help illustrate:

Have additional questions about counting the number of pitch in a strand of chain? Send us an email asktheengineer@diamondchain.com. For more information on the maintenance and installation of roller chain, check out our maintenance guide.

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