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Can You Use an 11-speed Chain On a 10-speed Cassette?

Yes, you can easily install 11-speed hins on a 10-speed cassette there is not a big difference between both of these chains, the right and left plates of the 11-speed chains are narrower in width, and plates of 10-speed chains are thicker and wider in their width, but it will not cause a big issue, because the inner diameter between the chain plates and pin to pin distance is exactly same between both of these chains, it is the reason that narrow and wider width of the plates of these chains does not matter and you can easily replace ad interchange them with each other. There is also a small negligible width difference between the cogs of 10 and 11-speed cassettes, which will not allow the 11-speed chain to rub against the cogs of the 10-speed cassette.

But an 11-speed chain on a 10-sp[eed cassette would expire early and the lifespan of this chain is no longer the same as that of the other compatible chains and cassettes, you will survive with the exact chain for more than that 1 year or a half but after this time period you have to buy another compatible 10-speed chain for the 10-speed cassette. Most riders will do this setup because there are many advantages of using 11-speed chains with the 10-speed cassette.

Smooth Setup:

The chain will not rub with the cogs and teeth of the cassette, and you will not feel any drag force within the chain as a result of the pedal on the trails and roads. the chain does not cause any issue in shifting from higher to lower and lower to higher cogs, also 11-speed chain does not cause any issue when passing from the derailleur cage and the small jockey wheels of the derailleur. so you can easily do this setup on your bike with a better and more worthy response. the setup is even more compatible than the 10-speed chain and 10-speed cassette because the narrower plates of the 11-speed chain would fit themselves within the cogs of the 10-speed cassette more firmly and strongly, even your bike speed and pedal striking response will increase by doing this setup.

Width Of These Chains:

10-speed chains have a width of 5.8mm and 11-speed chains have a width of 5.5mm also 10-speed chains are heavier in weight than 11-speed chains, and also the dimensions and cornerings of both of these chains are exactly the same and compatible with the cogs and teeth of the cassettes. the quick links or master links of both of these chains are also compatible with different brands of 11-speed and 10-speed chains, and also you can replace and interchange the quick links of 10-speed and 11-speed chains between them.

Back Pedalling:

The main issue of this setup is that when you use an 11-speed chain on a 10-speed cassette, you have to limit your backpedaling, do not backpedal in 180 degrees to complete 1 back rolling of the crankset otherwise, the chain will roll and skip from in the cogs of the cassette without gear shifting, so if you want to pedal then the better compatible degree is the 90-degree angle when you rotate your pedals in the backward direction, we can say as rotate the pedals in the backward direction at 6 o, clock and 9, o’clock but never at 12 o, clock to complete one round.

Chain Cleaning:

The chain needs to be cleaned and serviced properly when you are doing this setup because the more clean chain would save extra watts of energy ad helps in boosting of the cassette and drivetrain, so it is a must to take care of your bike chain in conditions even before going on a  ride and after coming from a ride.

Cheap And Expensive Brands Of Chains:

Always buy an expensive and better quality 11-speed chain which is the SRAM chain for 10-speed cassettes, because it will also save much of your energy and pedal striking when you are climbing uphills and cross-country trails.

Use The Appropriate Sized 11-speed Chain For 10-Speed Cassette:

measure the length of the 11-sped chain and 10-speed chain, and give a proper size to the 11-speed chain same as that of the length of the 10-speed chain, to make the chain compatible with the 10-speed cassette, derailleur, and the chain ring of the crankset. never too short or too long the chin, and always use the recommended chain length for 10-speed cassettes. chain length also depends on the lifespan of the chain, so it is a must to adjust the chain before installing it on the 10-speed cassette.

Chains are also directional and non-directional, you have to buy an appropriate 11-speed non-directional chain which will give an extra advantage of backpedaling.

Durability Difference:

11-speed chains are more durable and stronger than 10-speed chains, which is the reason that an 11-speed chain with the `10-speed cassette is the most compatible and stronger setup for mountain bikers and gravel riders.

Crankset Difference:

The chainrings of both 11-speed and 10-speed chains have different cog diameters and these are wider and narrower for both 10 and 11-speed chains, so you have to change or replace the chainrings for 11-speed chains with the 10-speed cassette, buy an old sued compatible 11-speed chain ring for the 11-speed chain.