Component manufacturer SRAM has issued an immediate voluntary recall of their 10 speed PowerLock chain connector but they are emphatic that this is NOT a recall of their 10-speed chains ONLY the PowerLock connector link, PowerLinks on 8 and 9 speed chains are also unaffected.
One particular batch of the links is affected which the company says may develop a crack during installation or initial use which could cause the link and then chain to fail resulting in potential accident or injury. The affected batch are those with a date stamp (located on the outer face of the plates) with a code ending in either M or N. The batch in question may have been fitted as original equipment to chains or have been sold as an aftermarket replacement.
Only the PowerLock 10 speed connector links are affected, no other PowerLock links are part of the recall, nor are any SRAM chains or non PowerLock
SRAM's voluntary recall notice advises consumers to stop using this product immediately. "Failure of the SRAM 10 speed chain PowerLock connector link, while in use, may result in loss of bicycle control and possible injury." and advises consumers to take their bike to their local SRAM dealer to have the link code verified to see whether it is one of the batch affected (see the diagram above for checking where the relevant code stamp on a PowerLock connector). According to the company the likely failure rate for the faulty batch is "2.5 connector plates out of 1000"
If you do have one of the connectors affected by the recall on your chain SRAM will give you a free replacement.
Plucked from the obscurity of his London commute back in the mid-Nineties to live in Bath and edit bike mags our man made the jump to the interweb back in 2006 as launch editor of a large cycling website somewhat confusingly named after a piece of navigational equipment. He came up with the idea for road.cc mainly to avoid being told what to do… Oh dear, issues there then. Tony tries to ride his bike every day and if he doesn't he gets grumpy, he likes carbon, but owns steel, and wants titanium. When not on his bike or eating cake Tony spends his time looking for new ways to annoy the road.cc team. He's remarkably good at it.