How to change a front sprocket

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Q. I want to raise the gearing on my 1997 Bandit 600 by changing the front sprocket. What’s the best way of getting it off and torqueing it back up correctly again?
vmcpakmcn, MCN forums

A. Such a vital part of a bike is securely fixed with a high torque setting, threadlock and a tab washer, too, so the best way to remove it is with a 1/2in air-impact wrench.

But if you don’t have a windy gun and a compressor you can still get it on and off safely using this method: Leave the drive chain in place and put a piece of hard wood about 3in by 3in through the rear wheel and resting on the top of the swing arm.

This will stop the wheel turning when applying the pressure it will need to undo the nut and bolt.

After removing the sprocket cover, you will need to undo the bolt in the end of the driveshaft. Once that’s off, the big 20mm nut will probably need a breaker bar that’s at least two-foot long to undo this nut (a piece of pipe over a standard socket bar will do the trick).

Remember to put thread lock on both nut and bolt when replacing and use a heavy-duty torque wrench to get the right setting.

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