open topic, for anything cycling related.
When you consider that even 'ignore it and hope it goes away' works, it's no wonder that the subject is controversial. My son's ancient bmx was left out in the rain for three years - the chain was soaked overnight in kero and now works a treat. You can't win.
The people who have the hardest choices are the ones who like to have a perfectly clean bike all the time. I don't mind my drivetrain looking like a drivetrain, but if you want the thing to look clean, you've got no choice but to get in there and scrub and rub at all those darned nooks and crannies.
Off topic. Years ago, in the MG car club, there was a bloke with a white B type that was always immaculate. When he opened the bonnet, the engine was always spotless. Even the fuel lines were polished and glowed. But it did mark it's spot with oil (hey, it's an MGB, it's compulsory). It wasn't until you started looking closely at the car and noted the many non-standard items (like the knife mounted beside the seat) that you realised this wasn't another concours jockey. When you chatted with him, you discovered that this was his only vehicle and got driven every day, regardless of weather, so the immaculate state of the car was amazing to say the least. I asked him about it one night. It turned out he was single. Had no other interest apart from work, footy and his MG. Everytime he got home, he spent ten minutes wiping off the dust or giving the wheels a quick flip over with the rag. On the weekend, he'd polish something. Hence he had the cleanest car in the club. Nice bloke but nuts (my MGs all tend to be in 'as used' condition).
hmm...I guess we all have our methods. I'm not saying that my way is the best. Only that it works well for me as has done so for many years. I haven't tried the kero trick of yours yet Richard (namely because I don't have a chain breaker) but will do so.....one day....then comment.
As for trying to keep the iron steed constantly clean?????...that's a hard one, but I've found that if you apply carnuba wax (same as the car polish stuff - I'm using Maguire's Yellow Wax) on the frame, it will come out not only super shining, but will also get rid of small scratches and when it gets slightly dirty a brush with a feather duster or cloth will easily get it shiny again.
Any silicon spray will work. Find some at your nearest automotive store or motoring section at K-mart/Big W. I'm currently using "Pyroil's citrus silicon lubricant spray" with a pleasant orangy fragrance. On sale from supercheap autos $7.99 (700ml can).
The chain lube issue is too contoversial for me (I use Prolink) so I'll stay out of it.
Using car wax on your bike is a good idea, especially if you do it from new. The girlie bike shows a fair bit of wear and tear, but definitely looks better for a wax. I bought one of the tinted ones (I can't remember the brand now) that promised to cover up scratches - it didn't - but it made me feel better anyway!
Nah, have your say Peter. My take on it is that it's all compromise. The more we hear of other people's thoughts, the better we're able to balance the compromises.
I use Prolink chain lube. You use Prolink to flush out any existing lube - even from new - then, as the instructions say "just re-lube and ride". I started when my chain was brand new. I put Dura Ace chain and cables on the girlie bike as part of a big service soon after I got her. The chain stays pretty clean, you can see a little bit of lube on the chain rings - the cassette is a bit cleaner. I lubricate the chain after I wash the bike (I'll get on to that) or every couple of weeks - I haven't had to wash it for a fair while as our roads have been very dry! So far, a bottle (120 ml) has lasted me over 6 months - I've still got about a third of it left. I think that it cost about $15.
I don't use degreaser - the chain doesn't need it and I wouldn't use it near my hubs. Shimano hubs aren't sealed and I don't want anything breaking down the grease in them. I use a 'tensioactive' liquid bike cleaner - it's called 'BlueBike' cleaner from Star Wax in Italy. Why? Because it was free when I signed up for the Torpedo7 newletter. I also got a 'chain cleaning machine' with some BlueBike organic chain cleaner, but I've never used either of them! The bike cleaner works really well, just spray it on, leave for a minute and squirt it off with the hose. It gets rid of mud, grease, dried on sweat and sports drink - even beer (as I found out after my run in with a beer bottle last year).
So, my approach is a bit different to Richard's.
That said, I take a very similar approach to him when I rebuild an old bike. I've found that the best way clean a dirty old chain is to soak it in solvent (I use diesel rather than kero, because that's what goes in my Hilux). Then I dry it, give it a dose of Prolink and ride with it to see if it's OK. In the end, if the bike's going to some-one I know, I usually get them to buy a new chain and if it isn't I leave the old one on.
I wonder how oxalic acid would go?
This seems to suggest it's more than a lube. Is it?
I must say I like the idea of everything staying clean and shiny, which wet oils don't do.
According to the package, it's a "thin bodied lubricant that utilizes Metal Friction Reducer technology". The capitals are their idea.
Like everything else, there's even a ProLink website.
Most of the shops here carry it and / or another brand (whose name I can't remember).
There's not much else to say - it's not messy and it seems to work.
Not many other reasons for recommending something are there. I'm not due for a new bottle of oil for a bit but will look out for it in the meantime.
I am up to 4 days as of last week. I think that I might stick at 4 for a while as I like the rest day in the middle of the week. Did my best time for the trip in this morning just over 35mins! Consistency does seem to pay off. Even over a short period.
Look out 1000 here we come!
I tend to find the leg muscles are killing me at the end of the week, so I take the weekend off.
I went 'social riding' on Sat around the eastern end of Burley, from Regatta down to Fyshwick and back across Commonwealth Ave bridge. 15.2km, in 51 mins So I backed it up straight away by running back the way we had gone, in 32 mins (~27.7kph avg). I'll have to make the lake a regular fixture, otherwise I just won't be doing enough Km's. I've lengthened my home-work route to 14.2k (9.5k is the quick way), but it's cutting into my work hours too much.
PS - 35 mins? Must have been that tail-wind that I got as a head-wind this morning. I had the slowest trip in today...
And how was your ride home
The wind didn't change this afternoon, so I had a ~30kph tailwind instead of a headwind. I did about 1km through Kaleen (AT) 44 kph... until I glanced down (AT) the HRM and found I'd hit 170.
Last edited by MJF on Tue Feb 13, 2007 7:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
Lol! Last time I tried that, I had to soak the T-shirt I'd been wearing in Napisan for 12 hours to get the clay out.
Been fortunate with the rain down here in terms of not having to miss any riding time whilst still getting torrential rain.
Ride home was not so bad, surprisingly. The wind accross Commonwealth Ave bridge was pretty intense. Felt like I was riding at a 45 degree angle sideways into it. The teeth of the ride was fine as it is mostly through the burbs, but the final down hill was surprising. I usually top in and around 50kph down the hill but the headwind cost me close to 10kph!
That's why mudguards are a good idea
On Saturday I very nearly removed mine, which were originally fitted when I lived in the UK (definitely needed them there) because I couldn't remember the last time they were actually needed. I'm so glad I didn't after the last couple of days of rain.
In fact now I'm toying with the idea of getting some new ones because I've switched from 26x1.6 to 26x1.3 tyres and my current ones, which always were a bit larger than necessary, now look comically oversized. I'm planning to buy a new bike as soon as I can afford it though and spending money on accessories for my current one doesn't really help...
Last edited by Hotdog on Tue Feb 13, 2007 8:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
I have a pannier rack on the back and (mistakenly) thought this would stop the water off the back wheel getting on me. Hah - fat chance. I even had mud on my helmet. Next time I visit the LBS, I'll have a closer look at mudguards.
BTW - what do people do to stop their shoes getting wet? I don't really want to buy spare shoes so I can rotate them while a set dries...
Check out the clothing racks at your favourite bike shop (every-one knows mine!) - BBB, Netti, Descente and others all make 'shoe covers'.
I use BBB 'heavy duty' ones - they are 3mm neoprene, so they keep out the water and keep in the warmth. I rode right through winter last year and if I had money to burn I'd go for something even warmer, but my booties were pretty good - I came back with ice on them more than once!
Looking at the online shops, there's a lot more to choose from this year!
ps. another good thing to do is to put some tape over any ventilation holes that you have in the soles of your shoes. Mine have a decent sized vent under my toes and another under the arch of my foot and you definitely don't need -7 degree air blowing in there during winter!
I might have a look at shoe covers, my cycling shoes are only just drying off after the soaking they got yesterday morning. There were some huge and deeps puddles that I had no way around and my feet got drenched. Really only need the waterproofing though, no much need need for extra insulation here as it never really gets properly cold.
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