Workshop tales, trials and disasters.
Maintenance tips, techniques and myths.
Technical discussion, description and outright lies
Kerosene: Don't do it in an enclosed space. There's a reason petrol sniffers end up in wheelchairs.
In fact that probably holds true for citrus-based cleaners as well.
There is a chain cleaner you can buy from Probikekit, I think the tradename is Barbieri, costs about AUD15, and it works like magic!!!
Was it Barbieri or Burberry? Surely you can sniff Burberry, right?
Bianchi, Ridley, Montague, GT, Garmin and All things Apple
Yep, I have used this too.
Time wounds all heels.
Take the chain off, put it in an old mount franklin water bottle or similiar, pour in some turps, but the lid on and shake vigorously, empty and repeat a few times saving the kero to clean the chain rings and cassette. To get the chain out just cut open the bottle and throw it away.
I've used two methods:
1. Kerosene, in either a tub with a tootbrush to scrub, or in a bottle to shake. Kero can be re-used by letting it settle in a big canister then decanting for the next cleaning job.
2. CT-18 Truck degreaser. Simlar methods. CT-18 is allegedly biodegradable, so less concern about washing it down the drain But always use gloves with this stuff, it does terrible things to your skin if you don't
Some types of dirty chains the kero works better, usually if it's really greasy. The CT-18 works better with mud-dirty MTB chains. Petrol or white spirit (shellite) would be way too volatile. Even outdoors, the explosive risk is not something I'd be comfortable with
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
I have worked in a number of larger bike shops. One large, reputable shop I worked for mainly used water soluble degreasers with chain cleaning devices-in this case Barberi or Finish Line.
All the other workshops I've run have had degreaser "wash bays" with recycled solvents very similar in property to kero. In all the wash bay style work shops the cassette / chain / chainrings / mechs are removed from the bike for cleaning to ensure a thorough clean and to make sure none of the solvent enters the freewheel mechanism. If said solvent makes its way into the freewheel it can wash grit into the assembly and / or wash grease out; both not good results.
I no longer work in the trade and do not have my own wash bay so recommend the use of the clip on style chain cleaners and a quality cassette cleaning brush similar to the Park item. I do have a compressor at home and still appreciate this for blasting off the water / debris after the clean; great results to be had with this method.
I use the Park Tools chain scrubber with Australian Export Degreaser in a pressure pack. This can be purchased at Bunnings or Super Cheap Autos for $1.90 to $2.50 a can. A can does about 2-3 bikes depending on the state of the drivetrain. This degreaser is water soluable, biodegradable, safe for carbon frames and doesn't seem to mess with my skin. The owner of Elite Cycles in Perth has used it in his shop for years and recomends it for all cleaning purposes including cleaning carbon fibre frames.
I wash the chain 4 to 5 times with the scrubber then use water in the same until it is clean, again, about 4 to 5 times. Then I dry the chain with a compressor and lube with Rock'n Roll Gold.
When you say four to five times do you mean running the chain through the cleaner this number of times with the scubber containing one fill of solution or do you replace the solution for reach run through?
4 to 5 cycles through the scrubber with a refill of degreaser or water for each cycle.
if you wipe the chain with a clean rag after this procedure, pretty much only water should mark the rag. Its then a matter of removing all water before lubing.
BTW I've bought some spares ie. brushes & foam pads from CRC for the PT scrubber (which does a very good job.)
Okay, thought so ... knowing you I am not surprised. How often (km) are you doing this?
For a quick chain and sprocket clean can I use a cheap aerosol auto degreaser like those in the discount shops? Then hose it off, dry the chain and apply chain lube.
Some websites say degreaser is too harsh but local bike shop says you can use anything as long as you lube straight away.
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