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I installed new front and rear sprockets on my 400ex, and the chain is much looser than it was with the stock ones. Honda says it should have 1 3/8 in play, but mine has more of a 2 in play. Is this normal? I have the axle hub tightened all the way. its a new chain and the sprockets are for greater top end.
 

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Depending on the combination of teeth on each sprocket, this is a normal phenomenon.

It's not dependent on the number of teeth on each sprocket, but its the circumference of circle that determines the length of the chain. In this case it gets complicated because the distance between the two circles has to be figured in also.

The best way to adjust the chain is to compress the suspension so the center of the counter shaft, swing arm pivot and rear axle are in a straight line. With things aligned like this the proper amount of slack in the chain is approximately 5/8 of an inch halfway between the two sprockets. If you can move the axle all the way forward and shorten the chain 2 links (2 pins of the chain), then you can shorten the chain. If the chain can only be moved up on the sprocket just 1 link, then to shorten the chain you need a 1/2 link (which for most 520 chains is impossible to get).

To get the correct slack, you might have to go up a tooth on the front sprocket or a tooth or two on the rear sprocket. One bit of info you did not divulge was the tooth count of each sprocket and the number of links of chain you have. To count the links (on the sprockets) count the outer plates of the chain and multiply by 2, or count the individual pins. Start at the master link (master link can be either the first or last link counted, your choice, but the master link is 2 pins of chain).
 
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