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A friend has a dura ace 11 speed spec and is looking to replace the chain. His is the CN 9000 and he had a hard time finding the exact chain but did find an CN-HG900. I can find information that explains the HG900 is asymmetrical and has a SIL-Tec surface treatment and is compatible with XTR cassettes. The information I find on the CN9000 tells me it is symmetrical and has a PTFE treatment but other than those difference I can't seem to discern anything much. He's going to have his LBS get teh CN9000 unless I tell him the HG900 is, for some reason a better chain but I can't find much information on whether one is "better" than the other.
In addition to the basic question as to whether one is better and why I have a second question. Can the PTFE treatment (I don't know aht the SIL-TEC is all about ) actually withstand an eventual deep cleaning with mineral spirits or a spraying with degreaser? I can't imagine any PTFE treatment being hard enough to withstand the scraping that happens with a chain while shifting or the dissolving ability of spray degreasers or solutions like simple green or mineral spirits. Thoughts on that issue and the difference between the 9000 and 900 dura ace chains?
 

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Shimano replaced the 9000 chain with the hg-900 chain. Unlike the 9000 chain, it's asymmetric and needs to go on one way.

I went through the same process last year when I went to find a replacement for the 6800 chain. It was replaced by the hg-700. Found a stack of the old chains on clearance. I haven't used the new asymmetric chain set up, but I doubt it would be noticeable vs the old style.
 

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The good news is the chain tool is only $120.
 

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Shimano decided to go with symmetrical chains initially with 11sp because, and this is what my rep told me, people kept installing them wrong and it was easier for them to deal with the customer issues by eliminating that potential. i.e. make the chains symmetric so it didn't matter which way they were installed. Then when the XTR 9000 group was released, they found that a symmetrical chain shifted better and decided to go back and make the chains the same across the road and MTB lines.
I'm sure there are other underlying reasons, but that is one that I hear more than anything else when I talk to those guys.
I've used both and can't really tell a difference in shift quality, so I just buy what's readily available and don't sweat it.
As for the chain tool, not sure why you'd want to drop that much money on that specific model when there are so many others that work perfectly for SOOO much less. I use a chain tool 10 to 20 times each week and of the different models I've played with, I still don't have a favorite. As long as the pin is replaceable, but still durable, and the threading is smooth, I'm good.
 

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KMC chain link

I am thinking of going for a hg900-11 chain for my bike Can you use a KMC link in the chain instead of the pin, reason. I was thinking as I have Fulcrum 55 17c wheels for winter and Mavic Ksy elite 15c wheels for summer and a new 28/11 cassette and a new 6800 crank(52/36) I would put the new drive train on for the summer (01 May) and put the oler gear back on for the winter (01 Nov) Winter cycling was wet here in Ireland and I do not have room for a winter bike.
 
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