Almost 95% of the chains I come across have a master link. Very rarely do I have to pull out the pin remover tool. Sometimes you just have to look really, really hard for it. It can look exactly like a regular link.
Here is the master link. It really is.
Apply some "bend" pressure to the chain. This will start to free up the the link plate.
It might help to pry slightly with a small screwdriver. Don't force the issue because you will start bending parts and make things worthless. Just keep working at it 'till the top plate comes off.
And off comes the link plate.
Now you can remove the chain from the bike.
If you don't have a master link, then you need a tool like this. This is the only proper way to remove and install pins. You can find smaller and cheaper versions, that will work, at almost any bike shop.
Use of these tools are pretty straight foward.
This is how to make the bike shop mechanics cringe. It can be done, but more times than not, the chain will become a wreck. I have done it this way before, using a 16d nail, but buying the tool was the best thing I have ever done!
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