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Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner

Item #: RD707Y01
USD$50.00
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Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner

Heads up, singlespeeders! If youre trying to convert any recent model bike into a singlespeed, youve probably realized by now that since the dropouts are vertical, there isnt any way to properly tension the chain. Surly comes to the rescue with the Singleator. This handy device mounts to the derailleur hanger and provides proper chain tension in a simple, lightweight package.

  • Tensioner allows use of 1-speed drivetrain on vertical drop frame
  • Mounts to derailleur hanger, self aligning floating pulley
  • Adjustable chain line
  • anti-chain drop hoop
  • This part requires an 18mm Cone wrench to make it work. See the the Surly wrench below. Its the perfect fit. If you are self-installing, make sure to have one on hand. Make sure to read the instructions.
  • Weight: 157 g

REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

by PowerReviews
Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner
 
4.0

(based on 21 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (12)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (2)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (2)

100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Attractive (4)
  • Easy to install (4)
  • Lightweight (4)

Cons

No Cons

Best Uses

  • Mountain bikes (3)
  • Mountain biking (3)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Avid cyclist (7)
    • Was this a gift?:
    • No (7)

Most Liked Positive Review

 

Easy peasy

Useful in quick conversion to single-speed without having to buy new wheel, hub, etc.

Useful in quick conversion to single-speed without having to buy new wheel, hub, etc.

VS

Most Liked Negative Review

 

Good product, but has some faults

I've owned 3 of these over the years, for several singlespeed conversions. On traditional frames that have vertical dropouts, you will need this kind of product to tension your chain. It works great...Read complete review

I've owned 3 of these over the years, for several singlespeed conversions. On traditional frames that have vertical dropouts, you will need this kind of product to tension your chain. It works great on my mountain bike, even with having an Absolute Black oval chainring! I've NEVER dropped a chain, ever, ever, ever. No matter how gnarly and bouncy the ride gets on my hardtail, the chain stays on. I have mine in the push up orientation, which wraps the chain around the rear freewheel even more, incidentally. The only con I can say is that the springs that are supplied with it, (one is for pushing up, one is for pushing down), are just a bit too fragile. I've had them break on me, due perhaps to fatigue and once with a particularly anger-filled tire change on the trail, in 90-degree temperatures, with 100% humidity, with mosquitoes and deer flies consuming me, and a thunderstorm bearing down on me. Anyway, just recommend treating it a bit more carefully than I did, and know that both Jenson and Surly sell replacement springs for this device, and that you'll maybe need to buy one in the future. Just be sure you get the right one; remember that there are 2 versions, push up and push down. Otherwise, once you've got it dialed in and properly adjusted with a narrow 18mm cone wrench, it will work really well for you. Guys, this is one of those times in life, when you actually do need to read and follow the directions.

Reviewed by 21 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
3.0

Good product, but has some faults

By The surly singlespeeder

from Camillus, NY

About Me Avid Cyclist

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Works well, (once properly installed)

Cons

  • Springs break too easily

Best Uses

  • City Bikes
  • Mountain Bikes
  • Road Bikes
  • Singlespeed conversions on vertical dropouts

Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

I've owned 3 of these over the years, for several singlespeed conversions. On traditional frames that have vertical dropouts, you will need this kind of product to tension your chain. It works great on my mountain bike, even with having an Absolute Black oval chainring! I've NEVER dropped a chain, ever, ever, ever. No matter how gnarly and bouncy the ride gets on my hardtail, the chain stays on. I have mine in the push up orientation, which wraps the chain around the rear freewheel even more, incidentally. The only con I can say is that the springs that are supplied with it, (one is for pushing up, one is for pushing down), are just a bit too fragile. I've had them break on me, due perhaps to fatigue and once with a particularly anger-filled tire change on the trail, in 90-degree temperatures, with 100% humidity, with mosquitoes and deer flies consuming me, and a thunderstorm bearing down on me. Anyway, just recommend treating it a bit more carefully than I did, and know that both Jenson and Surly sell replacement springs for this device, and that you'll maybe need to buy one in the future. Just be sure you get the right one; remember that there are 2 versions, push up and push down. Otherwise, once you've got it dialed in and properly adjusted with a narrow 18mm cone wrench, it will work really well for you. Guys, this is one of those times in life, when you actually do need to read and follow the directions.

  • Was this a gift?:
  • No

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

I should have bought this the first time

By 29er Hardtail

from Decatur, Alabama

About Me Avid Cyclist

Pros

  • Good tension
  • Lightweight

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Mountain Bikes
    • Road Bikes

    Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

    I bought this to replace a cheaper tensioner I had originally installed on my SS conversion. That tensioner was well made but was not a spring-tension design; it relied on a bolt and the axle to hold it in place. But no matter how tightly I mounted it, it would still slip out of position causing loss of tension on the chain and skipping, especially on steep climbs. The Surly design works great. I've not had any chain skipping so far even when starting from a dead stop on a steep climb on technical trails. And it won't require removal to allow tire removal. Again, I'm very pleased with this product.

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No
     
    5.0

    Works perfectly!

    By Schwei

    from Marlborough, MA

    About Me Avid Cyclist

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Lightweight
    • Rugged
    • Versatile

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Mountain Bikes

      Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

      I bought this to replace a less expensive tensioner for my SS experiment, and this one is far superior. The ability to easily adjust the spring tension an whether it tensions up or down is very helpful. There are a number of factors that make a conversion difficult when you don't have sliding dropouts and can't use an EBB. A more versatile tensioner is an absolute necessity! This one fits the bill.

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      Single minded perfection!

      By Murse1

      from canyon lake, ca

      About Me Competitive Cyclist

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Attractive Design
      • Easy To Install
      • Lightweight

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Mountain Biking

        Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

        Follow the directions and it works perfect!

        (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

         
        2.0

        Don't waste your money

        By Mattyd

        from Utah

        About Me Avid Cyclist

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • Easy To Install

        Cons

        • Bulky
        • Weak Spring

        Best Uses

        • Mountain Biking

        Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

        Went through a lot to dial in my singlespeed slopestyle set up and it would've been a lot easier if I started with a cheaper tensioner (ended up with the gusset) . First off the integral spring design is weak and does not provide as much tension as the lever type found on cheaper tensioners. Carrying around a cone wrench to tighten this thing on the trails is just ridiculous. There is also nothing to keep the tensioner from loosening on the hanger even though cheaper tensioners have this feature. The tensioner constantly failed with proper chain length/line and loosened all the time. The only nice part of the tensioner is the big rings that protect the pulley, I pulled them off and put them on my gusset tensioner for a sweet setup that has zero problems.

        Bottom line is I wish I spoke to my LBS shop guys before I wasted money as they confirmed all of the same problems I had setting up the bike.

        Absolutely did not work in push down configuration on my norco empire 5. Don't waste your money cheaper tensioners work way better! Not a single problem with my gusset

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Nice

        By Slow Fast Slow

        from Worcester MASS

        About Me Avid Cyclist

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Attractive Design
        • Durable
        • Gets The Job Done

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Casual Riding
          • Road Biking

          Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

          Very nice - Installation is a little tricky - not a problem, but you can't just slap it on. There are others out there that do the same thing, but I went with Surly since I knew this had to be a tried and true design - worth a few extra bucks.

          • Was this a gift?:
          • No

          (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Easy peasy

          By MegaMustang

          from Stuttgart, Germany

          About Me Avid Cyclist

          Verified Buyer

          Pros

          • Attractive Design
          • Easy To Install

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Mountain Biking
            • Upgrade

            Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

            Useful in quick conversion to single-speed without having to buy new wheel, hub, etc.

            • Was this a gift?:
            • No
             
            5.0

            Nice design...Good build

            By Jay

            from Phoenix, Arizona

            About Me Avid Cyclist

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

            • Attractive Design
            • Durable
            • Easy To Install
            • Lightweight
            • Quieter Than Expected

            Cons

              Best Uses

              • Road Biking

              Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

              I used this component on a single speed road bike conversion. It was easy to install (I set it up to tension the chain upwards, using the supplied spring.) I used it with the Gusset single speed conversion kit...I was a little worried about the chain line, but it set up perfectly. I've been surprised at how little tension it takes for proper operation. It's quiet, and I haven't experienced any problems with the chain skipping on the cog. That may be a mountain bike only problem. All in all, a great product.

              • Was this a gift?:
              • No

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              Surly singulator AWESOME!!!!!!

              By gtalaa

              from Central Illinois

              Verified Buyer

              Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

              I reversed the spring for the singulator to be pushing up on the chain and it works flawlessly. I've been using a standard tensioner most others have been using for years and it skips teeth and bouces around on decents. This one is dead quiet and never skips teeth even on the most grueling climbs (32x18 gearing). I like how the spring is internal and the unit is very nice looking. With the way I'm running this unit, it is almost unnoticable on the bike as it runs close the the bottom triangle rail. I love this thing.

              (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

               
              3.0

              You absolutely DO...

              By Jari

              from Warrensburg, Mo United States

              Comments about Surly Singleator Chain Tensioner:

              You absolutely DO NOT need their overpriced bottle opener, the action of your Hex wrench sticks it to the frame and it's the *position* that makes tension...I really have no idea what that wrench is for.

              Displaying reviews 1-10

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              Get free Standard Shipping with your $50 purchase today! Just choose Standard Shipping during checkout.

              Please note this offer is only available to physical shipping addresses in the 48 continental United States (no PO Boxes), and oversize charges still apply on some heavy/large items.