What are your thoughts on replacing a chain without changing both sprockets ? I realize that ideally you would replace both sprockets but is it really that bad not replacing them if they are still in good - excellant condition ?
The reason I ask is my bike needs a chain and I was going to go down one tooth on the front and leave my rear sprocket the stock size and since the one on the bike only has 22km on it and shows no visual signs of wear I was going to run it. Of course when I went to the parts store to buy my chain and front sprocket the guy at the counter says I'm crazy to do that because it will wear my chain out quicker. I tell him that I know that and I'd be happy if I got 10km (approx 1/2 life) out of the new chain since a sprocket costs $80 which is 1/2 the price of the chain anyway so it's a wash. He continues to tell me that in his experience (he's maybe 20) I'd be making a huge mistake and that he figures I wouldn't even get a 1/4 of the life out of the chain. I finally give in and after flipping through his books for ten minutes and the whole time he keeps asking me "so that's a 46 tooth right?" to which I answer yes he orders the sprocket. I pay and as I'm leaving I notice on the invoice he ordered me a 45 instead of a 46 so I go back and it's this huge deal to change it to a 46 but it gets done (I think). I then get a call today saying that the 45 tooth sprocket I wanted (I asked for a 46) is not available and I have to pay 50% more to get a different one. After explaining once again that I wanted a 46 not a 45 he puts me on hold for a few minutes and comes back and tells me that that one isn't available either so I still have to pay 50% more and order another one.
Now I'm back to thinking; why am I spending my money based on this incompetant parts guy's advice who's job it is to sell parts ? I know the chain will wear quicker but the chain cost me $170 including tax and the sprocket is going to cost me an additional $90 including tax so if I get 1/2 life out of the chain it's the same thing right ? For the record if it were a safety issue I wouldn't hesitate. I'm cheap not stupid.