What Is a Roller Chain Size Chart?

A roller chain size chart lists common chain sizes and identifies key measurements. The specifications vary by chart, but they usually include the pitch, inside width and roller diameter.

A size chart helps consumers or businesses choose a chain that fits in a specific engine or application. When producing roller chains, many American manufacturers use the ANSI B29.1 standards developed by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.

Most charts include a column for the pitch of a roller chain, which refers to the distance between the center point of each roller. The roller diameter measurement on a size chart identifies the maximum width of a single roller. The inside width is the distance between the link plates that connect the rollers. The pitch, roller diameter and inside width measurements are usually expressed in inches.

Roller chain size charts may also include additional specifications. Common measurements include the thickness of the link plate and the diameter of the roller pins. Many charts also specify the strength of the chain. The tensile strength, which is expressed in pounds or kilograms, refers to the maximum load that a chain can bear without breaking. A less-common measurement is the ultimate strength, which takes into consideration the quality of the steel, the type of heat treatment and the quality of the shot peen coverage on each link plate.