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setting chain length

The AlchemistThe Alchemist Posts: 60
edited June 2007 in Workshop
Morning all,
I finished re-building a bike a while back and was pretty pleased with the results. It took me a long time to get the gears set to change without any problems and I ended up shortening the chain twice. As a result, I managed to introduce weakness into the chain and not surprisingly it broke. I shortened it by one link, used new pins and guess what, yep, a mile or two down the road and it broker again.
I think it's time for a new chain and I'm off to the LBS at lunchtime today. Before I end up repeating the whole mess-up again I'd like some tips on correctly setting the chain length - I used the "chain on the big wheel at the front, big wheel at the back and 45 angle" last time around. The guy at the LBS suggested big front, big rear and the chain almost stretched out i.e. less than 45
Can anyone give me some hints please?
Gear system is Shimano Deore LX (front and rear, changers and chain)

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