Bicycle Mechanics - Lemon oil as a degreaser?
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09-08-01, 04:46 PM
I came in from a ride today and spend a while cleaning my bike. We had been caught in the rain, and my whole drivetrain was badly gunked-up.
I used the citrus degreaser I usually use because I get such good results, but now I'm about to run out... So I was wondering... What's IN this stuff? It isn't orange juice because that would contain too much sugar; even lemon juice contains some natural sugars. Could it be lemon oil?
I'm thinking -- a concoction of water, lemon oil and dishwashing liquid might work pretty well as a degreaser/general purpose cleaner. Any comments? Any experience with lemon oil?
09-08-01, 10:17 PM
I use turtle wax purple muscle...its very powerful.
I doubt lemon oil, because you are degreasing, so the oil would defeat this purpose. Even though it has natural sugars, lemon or orange juice would probably be closest to what's in there. I'm sure the useful ingrediants are extracted from the juice when making these degreasers. Straight dish detergent cuts grease very well. I recommentd Simple Green or Citrus cleaners from a hardware store as you get a lot more volume for the money vs. the bike specific citrus degreasers.
Try it and tell us how it works.
09-12-01, 07:17 AM
Take care using any solvents around bearings. "Sealed bearing" is not what is says. If solvent gets into the bottom bracket, you probably have to trash it. In the rear wheel, and you have to re-pack them. You can de-lube out of the rear mech pully wheels, and with a top-tube gear cable, you can clean any lube out of the cable housing.
09-12-01, 08:38 PM
Originally posted by velocipedio
I used the citrus degreaser I usually use because I get such good results, but now I'm about to run out... So I was wondering... What's IN this stuff?
I'm glad you asked, velocipedio.
The answer is "limonene." It occurs naturally in citrus fruits and cuts grease like a knife. Therefore, I would agree with Michael W to be careful around areas that you don't want a powerful solvent to penetrate.
I like the stuff for certain applications because it's so powerful, and smells great! (But it can dry your skin up quite a bit.)
I actually used it to remove "permanent" magic marker from the kitchen table.
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