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Can You Use a 12-Speed Chain on an 11-Speed Cassette?(Detailed Guide On Chains)

Yes, it is possible and you can easily use the 12-speed chain on an 11-speed cassette. the distance between the right and left side plates of 12-speed chains is smaller and the same distance for 11-speed chains is wider and thicker than 12-speed chains. the main thing you have to look for in this setup is that, checks the side plates of the chain, as 12-speed chains are narrower so when you start shifting gears then the chain will also jump from lower to higher and higher to lower cogs, so both right and left sided plates of 12-speed chain would not rub with the cogs and cassette of the 11-speed, it is a big advantage, but on the other way if you want to install the 11-speed chain on 12-speed cassette, then it would not work due to non-compatibility, the reason behind this non-compatibility is that 11-speed chains have thicker and wider side plates and also the internal hollow distance of 11-speed chains is greater and bigger, due to which these chains would start rubbing with the cogs and cassette of 12-speed.

11-speed cassettes have their own specific and compatible shifters, and12-speed gear shifters are not compatible with and do perform with the 11-speed cassettes. also, an 11-speed cassette contains 11 cogs and 11 gears, so it is possible and you can easily find a single cog of this cassette, which is compatible with the chainring and accurate chain lining, but when you want to shift gears between lower to higher and higher to lower cogs of the cassette, then shifters won’t work with the 11-speed cassette, how long you can stay with a single cassette cog gear? gear shifters are specific and are compatible with their specific speed bike. for example, 11-speed shifters are specific for 11-speed cassettes and 12-speed cassettes are specific for 12-speed cassettes. but if you swap and interchange shifters between these bikes then the setup won’t work.

11-speed cassettes have their proper and specific location within the drivetrain where these are installed, and the location and spacing of 12-speed cassettes are different from 11-speeds, which means these also have their proper locations which are also specific for their specific gear shifters, and you have to face difficulty and problem in shifting of gears, but it can easily be accurate. there are small round shaped screws that are connected to the upper lever ends of gear cables, if you are a mechanic then you will know more than me about adjusting and screwing these adjusters, but if you are a beginner then, tight or lose these barrel screws, a point comes where gear cable, shifters, and cassette would work accurately in a proper way.

Shimano 12-Speed Chains With 11-Spee Cassette:

Shimano 12-speed chains are not compatible and are not installed with 11-speed cassettes, the reason is that the inner distance between the left and right side plates of these chains are different and also have different designs and structures as compared to other brands of chains, due to which these chains are not compatible, but if you have Shimano 12-speed and you want are persistent to install it with the 11-speed cassette, then there is a single option, you have to remove and replace Shimano quick link of Shimano chain with the SRAM quick link of SRAM chain, after installing of SRAM quick link your 12-speed Shimano chain becomes compatible with the 11-speed cassette.

SRAM 12-Speed Chains With 11-Speed Cassette:

SRAM 12-speed chains are totally compatible with 11-speed cassettes, this article is totally based on SRAM 12-speed chains because these are not specific like Shimano chains, if you want to install 12-speed chains, then the SRAM brand is an accurate and compatible option for you. there is also another brand and type of 12-speed chain which is known as the IIRC brand, these chains are also totally compatible and you can easily them with the 11-speed cassettes without any issues or problems.

Installing Of New Pin Within The Chain:

Chain is connected with each other with the help of small 2 to 3-millimeter pins, if any of these pins is ruined or old or if you are reusing an old pin, then it is a big risk and dangerous for you, it might break any time and at any place, you have face trouble. so when you are installing or reinstalling these small chain pins or links, make sure you have properly installed them within the chain without any issues.

Chain Ring Compatibility:

Chain rings of 11 and 12-speed bikes are also compatible with each other but we are not talking about the Shimano brand, if your chain ring is of the Shimano brand then the 12-speed chain might not work properly and accurately with them due to non-compatibility. The chain ring of 11-speed bikes are thicker and wider as compared to 12-speed bikes, so your 11-speed crankset would also not work with the 12-speed chain.

Is It Possible To Swap Or Replace Shimano 12-Speed Chain With SRAM 12-SPeed Chain?

Yes, it is possible and you can easily replace or interchange Shimano 12-speed chains with SRAM 12-speed chains, Shimano chains would work as much better as SRAM chains, it is the reason most riders and mechanics are doing the same setup to avoid Shimano non-compatibility issues.

Difference Between Narrower And Wider Bike Chains:

Narrow or wide are just two simple non-valuable words regarding MTB and road bike chains, if you read and search the complete history and background about both of these chains, then you will come to the conclusion, that the inner diameter and width of both narrow and wide chains are exactly same. it is a big major advantage for 11-speed and 12-speed riders, these have the advantage of replacing and changing bike chains with each other.