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While not usually inclined to buy into the 'how do I make my chain last longer' debates that go on, I am about to fit a new chain to my MTB. I did wonder if MTB riders tended to favour stripping out all the packing grease or leaving it in as many roadies do (including me). Leaving it in would seem a way to attract a lot of muck, but I thought I'd raise the matter for opinion.
I've always left the original lube on to start with. Its better distributed than any externally applied lube will be and seems to last longest of any lube before going noisy. WIppermans are packed with something thats not that much heavier/messier than RR Gold, and doesn't seem to pick up crud any faster.
Just wipe any excess off the outside plates and yer good to go.
...whatever the road rules, self-preservation is the absolute priority for a cyclist when mixing it with motorised traffic.
London Boy 29/12/2011
Depends on your trails.
For road work, definitely the grease they come packed in seems to last brilliantly. I've done probably 5 or six weeks (more?) at 120km a week on hte original grease before it became noisy enough to indicate a clean was needed. That inlcuded some pretty nasty weather. Just wiped off with a rag and I was good to go again. I was a bit amazed to be honest.
For mtb ... hmmmmnnnggghh ... dunno. Current favourite is Purple Extreme. It leaves the chain residue free, yet doesn't wash out in wet rides and the crud doesn't stick to it. The problem with leaving the grease on the chain on a mtb is that it attracts HUGE amounts of sand and garbage on my local trails, which are quite sandy. Not a fan of the original packing grease in that environment. A new chain needs cleaning and re-lubing after one ride if the grease is left on. At least with the PE the grit eventually falls off or can be washed off easily if you spin your chain through under a tap.
I was using White Lightning Epic Ride, but after going so long without changing lube on the hardtail commuter, and then putting some Epic Ride on in desperation to get home last week and having it go horrid black and mucky in a single trip, I'm not going to bother finishing the bottle. PE only from now on. And since I've "rediscovered" hardtails for some of my local trails it seems like it seems like a good fit..
What? I thought you loved your 5" boing armchair?
There are a number of guys on the STW forum that vacillate between FS and HT.
I also use Wipperman chains but coat the outside with Finish Line Wet and wipe off. This appears to make the chain less sticky than the original grease while retaining the grease.
Yeah with Wippermans I just put them on a ride...but they come off every so often for a wash.So depending on how mucky the weather is depends on how long the original grease stays in...after first wash it is all gone.When I used to run Shimano before I saw the light I would wash them totally first...lived in Epping and the trails there are all sand so preferred dry lube.
Thanks all. My new chain is a KMC one (which I've never tried before but the internet vibe seemed good). The trails here in Canberra have been decidedly damp and muddy after a fairly soggy winter but are starting to dry out now. Still, the BOM reckons we are heading for wet spring - bit sick of mud riding to be honest . I hope the Scott 24hr is dry.
I'm thinking I'll clean the outside of the chain thoroughly and leave the insides as they are. If it doesn't seem good after the first ride or two I'll just take it off and give it a good bottle shake in kero. I'm using Prolink lube at the moment, which I rather like after trying a few of the Rock'n'Roll types, though I'm beginning to think there is no such thing as a perfect MTB lube.
Haha! Ya busted me!
Yes, I really enjoyed the hardtail last Sunday on my 60km training ride. I rode it basically because I had just finished prepping the FS for the race this weekend and didn't want to have to change the chain and clean the bike AGAIN. I thought I'd give a set of Michelin tubeless I had hanging up a go as well.
It was noticeably more sketchy on the downhills than the FS, in part due to the rubber not really suiting the conditions and in part due to having only 80mm travel (fork damper needs bleeding), but it was more fun than I was expecting. The legs definitely got a workout. The trail is regarded as relatively non-technical. The main hazards are fields of babyhead rocks covering some of the downhill sides of the waterbars, loose surfaces, and sand drifts.
Aaargh the chain sounded awful after riding through the creek crossings and sandy puddles on Perimeter Track. Eventually it dropped out though.
But I'm taking the comfy armchair with me to Parkes tomorrow.
Sorry to drag up an old thread, but has anyone tried that squirt dry lube before? I bought some not long ago and although I had to totally degrease the chain to work it in properly, it seems to do it's job OK and is awesome for the fact that it hardly smells and spillage is easy to clean up. I use my bare hands to work it under the rollers and into the links because it's so easy on the skin, and there isn't much gunk build-up anywhere so far. I've yet to see how well it holds up in the long run and in really punishing conditions though
I got some Squirt in a sample bag at the bike race I mentioned above. Am yet to try it though. The commuter is due to have a clean chain swapped in tomorrow so I might give it a go.
I find with Squirt that you need to add a lot at first. For the first 100km or so I added some every 20km or so then a bit less often. Adding it less and less often. After about 500km it seems to last 200 to 300km before having to add more, thats on the road in the dry.
To respond to my own original query, my experience based on what happeened with this new chain is that for an MTB, in future I will strip out all the packing grease before first use. I found that the original lube continued to work its way out and attract a lot of muck. I had to break the chain and a do the kero milkshake within a few rides anyway.
The factory lube on my MTB wasn't too great, very gunky and the dirt really worked it's way into the chainlinks. When I cleaned my chain out, the crud just kept coming.
So you use kerosene to clean out yours then? I wasn't sure if that would work well so I used paint thinner instead, but kero would be a bit less nasty.. less nasty than petrol too, which I was also considering using.
Does the prolink lube smell much? I might try it out on my other bike, but I don't want to deal with stuff that reeks of chemicals any more than I need to. That's one of the things I like about squirt
Kero is a pretty standard cleaner for bike drive trains. The Prolink lube doesn't have any particular odour I think. Faintly petro-chemically at close range I suppose, but nothing that I've ever noted or worried about.
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