Best singlespeed tensioner?

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  • Best singlespeed tensioner?
  • thepodge

    Surly is often called the best but I’ve never had a problem with the cheapest superstar one. I’m now running an expensive superstar one but only because it’s on a full suspension frame and I need it to take up more chain.

    On my hardtail ss I’m running a dmr front tensioner which looks a lot neater but has far less adjustment


    My surly one was pretty poor.

    An old rear mech works best IMO.


    Am converting my old 26 inch race hard tail to singlespeed, but as it is a geared frame I need a chain tensioner. What’s a good lightweight and reasonably priced tensioner? Is it best to have a chain roller or jockey wheel type?



    Most people on here were happy with whatever is cheapest when I asked a similar question building my SS.

    I tried quite a lot of the usual suspects but found them rather poor, all for slightly different reasons. The best I’ve found is the Yess ETR-V. Not cheap but rock solid and all the adjustability you could ask for while being quiet and clean looking once on the bike. Only downside is it is a touch more pricey but it is totally worth it IMO

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    I preferred using a Blackspire Stinger, mech hanger ones can get in the way of easily removing the wheel in my experience.


    That blackspire one is almost identical to my dmr one


    I’ve an Alfine chaintensioner which never got used as I I couldn’t Alfine the Stumpy FSR. Shimano quality and works very well apparently.


    Also used a Stinger, and a Gamut and E13 chain device, also used rear mechs, i have a butchered sachs roadie mech (old) for this purpose. Have seen home made rear tension devices made from old MRP orange rollers and a cone spanner 🙂
    Have a DMR simple tension seeker, others are out there.

    Most people i know will just use whatevers to hand, that will function for the job.


    Surly is vastly superior to the Superstar one as I have used both

    Surly is the best if you want to pay and an old mech the cheapest

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    I use one of these – – not cheap but you sometimes find them on eBay.
    Before anyone points it out – yes a bodged mech will do the job just as well – but it won’t look as nice… 🙂


    Surly one for me but in push up mode giving really good wrap round rear cog.

    tops 5

    Stinger working for me


    I’m using a Gusset Squire I think, in push up mode. It’s okay but it doesn’t run parallel with the chain so has been twisted. This gives the effect of what feels like ghost shifting as the chain was de-railing off the tensioner wheel.

    A trail side repair/bodge this evening has made it much better by wedging in a cut piece of thick plastic between the arm and the spring tensioner, which has brought the arm virtually parallel with the chain, if you get my description?

    I’m wondering if the mech hanger is bent? Is there a method that can be used with bits of string or something where I could check the hanger alignment? Steel frame btw, so I have a pair of stilsons 😉

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