Many moons ago I raced BMX, first time my nads drilled the gooseneck, my grandfather taught me how to pin a chain by hand and have never changedI don't use a master link anymore, but when I did, it was with a Tecumseh H60 (6hp) with governor bypassed with no issues. For a Predator I wouldn't worry about it. For an Animal or bigger, I'd use a breaker. As long as the clip is not "sprung", and the ears of the clip are facing "away" from the direction of rotation, you're probably OK. I moved to a chain breaker because I didn't want to risk losing over a $0.25 part.
I made it, but my mongoose and factory redline wasn't so lucky.@XXX#40 -- Mine usually nailed the gooseneck because of the sudden endo, not the chain breaking. And that darn Turkeyneck pad velcro never stayed put on the "pad" they had. The clamp stems were slightly better, but also sharper. I'm proud to say I survived the 80's.
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When using a chain breaker, the outside plate that a pin is pressed out of and then re-used to join the chain is the weak link. The swedge on the end of the pin that is pressed out literally is tearing material out of the plate when it passes through. When the chain is assembled you loose some / all of the press fit between the pin and plate.I contend that using a chain break tool creates the weak link.