Hmm, fair enough. I ride trials and we're a bit paranoid about chain snaps, so Powerlinks are a big no-no. For XC they're probably OK to be fair. But I reckon it's good practise to join it properly. I just replace chain and cassette at the same time, and I'm hoping that the XTR chain will make the cassette last longer - maybe a year? That's what my mate reckons. I think it's wishful thinking but I'm giving it a go to see. N.B. Big ring puts less torque in your chain than little ring. Think of the moments Yeah, I think they're strong enough in tension. In fact I don't think I've ever seen a snapped powerlink per se - they just fall apart and you spend ages on your knees looking for the pieces, haha.