Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

Bicycle Mechanics Broken bottom bracket? Tacoed wheel? If you're having problems with your bicycle, or just need help fixing a flat, drop in here for the latest on bicycle mechanics & bicycle maintenance.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 05-12-08, 01:07 AM   #1
kmcrawford111
50/50 Road/eBike Commuter
Thread Starter
 
kmcrawford111's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Valparaiso, IN
Bikes: Specialized Roubaix, Specialized Sirrus, Brompton
Posts: 764
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Mag-1 Hi-Temp Wheel Bearing Grease as Chain Lube?

I've been using the 3-in-1 oil that I bought way too much of as a chain lubricant, but now I'm almost out, and I've been thinking about what to use next as a chain lubricant. I commute regularly, 8 miles each way, on average 5 days a week. This includes riding in at least light to moderate rain, so I'd like to get a lube resistant to water washout. I asked my LBS about this and he sells a lube that is waxy and needs to be applied only a few times a year. I was about to buy something like that, but now I've remembered that I have 1 lb. tub of Mag-1 Hi-Temp Wheel Bearing Grease that I bought when I needed a grease for overhauling my hubs. Is there any reason not to use it as a chain lube? Based on the prodct description I don't see any reason not to.

If this is OK, what kind of guidelines should I keep in mind (how to apply and how often)? Do I need to thoroughly clean the oil out of the chain before switching to this?

Thanks for any insight!
kmcrawford111 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-12-08, 01:35 AM   #2
the_mac
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Bikes:
Posts: 93
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
The part of the chain that needs lube is the inside of the rollers, and I don't know how well a thick grease will penetrate inside there.

You might get creative with your application process and find a very good way to lube the chain, or you might never get the grease to where it needs to be.
the_mac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 12:01 AM   #3
kmcrawford111
50/50 Road/eBike Commuter
Thread Starter
 
kmcrawford111's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Valparaiso, IN
Bikes: Specialized Roubaix, Specialized Sirrus, Brompton
Posts: 764
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Would anyone else mind chiming in?
kmcrawford111 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 12:06 AM   #4
Ziemas
Senior Member
 
Ziemas's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Riga, Latvia
Bikes:
Posts: 10,082
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Grease isn't thin enough to get into the rollers of the chain and also is a dirt magnet. It's useless as a chain lube.
Ziemas is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 12:11 AM   #5
relyt
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Bikes:
Posts: 619
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Use actual chain lube, it is lower viscosity and will actually work into the chain. And like Ziemas said, it will attract dirt and sand, and actually make the chain worse off. Just use chain lube. Or do what I do, and don't use chain lube. I've never felt a difference.
relyt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 12:12 AM   #6
sivat
Geek Extraordinaire
 
sivat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Long Beach, CA
Bikes: Bianchi Advantage Fixed Conversion; Specialized Stumpjumper FS Hardtail
Posts: 1,769
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I agree with the mac and ziemas. The grease is too thick to do any good and will attract dirt.
__________________
I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

Sintesi Conversion Serotta Track
sivat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 12:14 AM   #7
Wordbiker
Pwnerer
 
Wordbiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Pagosa Springs, CO, USA
Bikes: Road, MTB, Cruiser, Chopper, BMX
Posts: 2,907
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
This thread helps answer my puzzlement when washing customer bikes and asking myself, "WTF is this nasty crap all over the drivetrain...and how the hell do I get it off?"
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
Ski, bike and wish I was gay.
Wordbiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 01:26 PM   #8
kmcrawford111
50/50 Road/eBike Commuter
Thread Starter
 
kmcrawford111's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Valparaiso, IN
Bikes: Specialized Roubaix, Specialized Sirrus, Brompton
Posts: 764
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wordbiker View Post
This thread helps answer my puzzlement when washing customer bikes and asking myself, "WTF is this nasty crap all over the drivetrain...and how the hell do I get it off?"
I asked before applying, didn't I? Is chain lube for wet conditions so different from grease, especially one described as being suitable for general-purpose and having high water resistance, and that I had a lot of laying around, that it wasn't worth asking?
kmcrawford111 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 02:09 PM   #9
masiman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 1,735
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmcrawford111 View Post
I asked before applying, didn't I? Is chain lube for wet conditions so different from grease, especially one described as being suitable for general-purpose and having high water resistance, and that I had a lot of laying around, that it wasn't worth asking?
Don't be upset that you're not getting the answer you wanted.

Alot of brighter minds than ours have come and gone through the annals of bike history. As it stands, when a someone markets a chain lubricant, it is not a grease. I think the reasons above covered it . If you can make it less viscous, it could be useful.
masiman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 02:21 PM   #10
kmcrawford111
50/50 Road/eBike Commuter
Thread Starter
 
kmcrawford111's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Valparaiso, IN
Bikes: Specialized Roubaix, Specialized Sirrus, Brompton
Posts: 764
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by masiman View Post
Don't be upset that you're not getting the answer you wanted.

Alot of brighter minds than ours have come and gone through the annals of bike history. As it stands, when a someone markets a chain lubricant, it is not a grease. I think the reasons above covered it . If you can make it less viscous, it could be useful.
I'm not upset, and I did get the answer I wanted - an honest one. But I don't see the harm in asking. That's a big part of how we learn, isn't it?
kmcrawford111 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 04:22 PM   #11
Retro Grouch 
Senior Member
 
Retro Grouch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: St Peters, Missouri
Bikes: Catrike 559 I own some others but they don't get ridden very much.
Posts: 26,913
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 212 Post(s)
The bad news is that products that have been designed to lube bicycle chains are ridiculously expensive for what they are.

The good news is that if you use one of these products in the way it was intended you don't use very much. If you only own one bike a $5.00 drip bottle should last you at least a couple of years.

It doesn't make sense to me to get ceative in order to save $2.50 per year.
Retro Grouch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-13-08, 04:43 PM   #12
Wordbiker
Pwnerer
 
Wordbiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Pagosa Springs, CO, USA
Bikes: Road, MTB, Cruiser, Chopper, BMX
Posts: 2,907
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmcrawford111 View Post
I'm not upset, and I did get the answer I wanted - an honest one. But I don't see the harm in asking. That's a big part of how we learn, isn't it?
Absolutely, and I do appreciate that not only did you ask, you also appear to be heeding the advice.

My comment was not meant personally, just a commentary upon some of the more harebrained ideas of lubrication out there, especially those that cause more harm than good. We charge $15 extra to clean drivetrains with tough to remove "lubricants", some that appear to be stuff dredged up from the LaBrea tarpits. $15 buys a lot of chainlube that will wash off with much milder solvents...including soap.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
Ski, bike and wish I was gay.
Wordbiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 12:14 AM   #13
kmcrawford111
50/50 Road/eBike Commuter
Thread Starter
 
kmcrawford111's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Valparaiso, IN
Bikes: Specialized Roubaix, Specialized Sirrus, Brompton
Posts: 764
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wordbiker View Post
Absolutely, and I do appreciate that not only did you ask, you also appear to be heeding the advice.

My comment was not meant personally, just a commentary upon some of the more harebrained ideas of lubrication out there, especially those that cause more harm than good. We charge $15 extra to clean drivetrains with tough to remove "lubricants", some that appear to be stuff dredged up from the LaBrea tarpits. $15 buys a lot of chainlube that will wash off with much milder solvents...including soap.
Sincere apologies for misunderstanding. I will pick up the waxy stuff that my LBS carries. Cost isn't the concern - I like to make do with what I have if appropriate primarily to simplify my life, not to save money (though that is often another benefit). As someone who works in maintenance for heavy industry, I fully understand how spending $ on maintenance now can save $$$$$$$$$$ (and other types of resources) later.

I'd still like to know, though, if I need to thoroughly clean the chain before switching lubes.
kmcrawford111 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 06:35 AM   #14
Kotts
Recreational Commuter
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: Central Ohio
Bikes: Two brand-less build-ups.
Posts: 1,010
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmcrawford111 View Post
Sincere apologies for misunderstanding. I will pick up the waxy stuff that my LBS carries. Cost isn't the concern - I like to make do with what I have if appropriate primarily to simplify my life, not to save money (though that is often another benefit). As someone who works in maintenance for heavy industry, I fully understand how spending $ on maintenance now can save $$$$$$$$$$ (and other types of resources) later.

I'd still like to know, though, if I need to thoroughly clean the chain before switching lubes.
I thoroughly clean the chain periodically anyway, now is as good a time as any. I use kerosene, because it has some lubricating ability on its own, so any traces left in there don't do as much damage.

If you use a water-based degreaser, follow it up with WD-40 before lubing the chain. NOTE: WD-40 is NOT a lubricant, it is a water-dispersant (that's what the name means "Water Dispersant - 40th Formulation"). It does do a good job of getting the water out so a proper lubricant can get in.
Kotts is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 07:41 AM   #15
masiman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 1,735
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kotts View Post
I thoroughly clean the chain periodically anyway, now is as good a time as any. I use kerosene, because it has some lubricating ability on its own, so any traces left in there don't do as much damage.

If you use a water-based degreaser, follow it up with WD-40 before lubing the chain. NOTE: WD-40 is NOT a lubricant, it is a water-dispersant (that's what the name means "Water Dispersant - 40th Formulation"). It does do a good job of getting the water out so a proper lubricant can get in.
KMC, you could always start yet another "what is the BEST way to clean chain?" thread , lol.

There have been some pretty good discussions regarding the chemistry of chain lubrication and cleaning. There are any number of agitation, mechanical, cleaner and solvent permutations to make your head spin. Add on top of that, discussions as to lubrication formulation, amount, method and frequency. Then mix in a little enviro friendly efforts and you can almost have 1:1 on processes to people. And about 10% of them are fanatics about their method. It's like trying to get your nice neighbor Debbie to shut up and let you get back to enjoying your day, .

I'm glad you were not upset by the advice and comments above. A quick search on chain cleaning, yielded 61 pages x 15 results p/page (915 posts). Searching titles only gave 38 results. Searching chain clean, titles only, gave 24 results. Chain lube, titles only is 51 results. I.e. there are alot of opinions.

Good luck with the riding!
masiman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 07:54 AM   #16
jgedwa
surly old man
 
jgedwa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Carlisle, PA
Bikes: IRO Mark V, Karate Monkey half fat, Trek 620 IGH, Cannondale 26/24 MTB, Amp Research B3, and more.
Posts: 3,354
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 9 Post(s)
Chain lube is the most over-thought aspect of bike maintenance in my opinion. Use a lubricant that is thin enough to get in where it is supposed to go. Clean off the excess after. And be willing to clean and re-lube on a regular basis.

Anything more than this as a prescription is too much.
__________________
Cross Check Nexus7, IRO Mark V, Trek 620 Nexus7, Karate Monkey half fat, IRO Model 19 fixed, Amp Research B3, Surly 1x1 half fat fixed, and more...
--------------------------
SB forever
jgedwa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 07:59 AM   #17
Wordbiker
Pwnerer
 
Wordbiker's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Pagosa Springs, CO, USA
Bikes: Road, MTB, Cruiser, Chopper, BMX
Posts: 2,907
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmcrawford111 View Post
I'd still like to know, though, if I need to thoroughly clean the chain before switching lubes.
Many lubes require a chain cleaning in the instructions for use. In any case...it won't harm a thing and will certainly help.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
Ski, bike and wish I was gay.
Wordbiker is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 09:13 AM   #18
neil0502
My bike's better than me!
 
neil0502's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Northern Colorado
Bikes: (2) Moots Vamoots, (1) Cannondale T2000 tourer, (1) Diamondback Response Comp mtb
Posts: 2,041
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kotts View Post
If you use a water-based degreaser, follow it up with WD-40 before lubing the chain. NOTE: WD-40 is NOT [a particularly good] lubricant, it is a water-dispersant (that's what the name means "Water Dispersant - 40th Formulation"). It does do a good job of getting the water out so a proper lubricant can get in.
Fixed
neil0502 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 12:15 PM   #19
masiman
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 1,735
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by jgedwa View Post
Chain lube is the most over-thought aspect of bike maintenance in my opinion. Use a lubricant that is thin enough to get in where it is supposed to go. Clean off the excess after. And be willing to clean and re-lube on a regular basis.

Anything more than this as a prescription is too much.
The opinions are ramping up....

This post reads like...Anyone who does it this way is wrong, this is how you do it. jgedwa. Not a personal attack, just pointing out that the lube, cleaning opinion engine is warming up.
masiman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-14-08, 12:54 PM   #20
leob1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Middle of the road, NJ
Bikes:
Posts: 2,614
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 34 Post(s)
You want to start a bar fight on Bike Forums; just include the words "chain lube" in a post. Works every time.
leob1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-08, 09:23 PM   #21
Minnesnowtan
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: BallTeeMore, MaryLand
Bikes: 2007 Specialzed Sequoia
Posts: 6
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
chain grease

I'm a little late to this party, but lets take your idea very seriously. After all, the idea of a thick lubricant inside the chain is an attractive one.

Well, if you can get the grease between the pin and the roller, and between the plates where they overlap, then you have yourself a lubricant.

But getting it there is not so easy. You can heat the grease (be careful because it can catch fire and be quite dangerous). If the grease is in a plastic container, microwave it for short periods and be careful even there. Putting a container of grease in water and heating the water may be a decent idea.

Once you have hot runny grease, how does one apply it to a chain?

Have the chain in a metal pan and pour the hot grease onto it. All over it, everywhere. But once the grease hits the chain, it cools, thickens, and may not get into the places that you intend. So either the grease must be a bit hotter to account for this, or the chain should be warmed up ahead of time. And the liquified grease really needs to cover the chain in order to fill all crevices.

When it cools, you now have a greasy, slippery chain to mount. And there would be much excess grease to remove somehow. And what remains will certainly attract dirt.

It looks like a lot of work and for less then optimal results. But, as I wrote earlier, the idea of a thick lubricant inside the chain is an attractive one. Grease does not appear to be the best option.

Last edited by Minnesnowtan; 10-18-08 at 09:25 PM. Reason: typo
Minnesnowtan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-08, 12:25 AM   #22
dperreno 
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Beverly Hills, MI
Bikes: '72 Fuji Finest, '80 Austro-Daimler Inter 10, '06 Fuji Team Issue, '06 Salsa Las Cruces, Nashbar Frame single speed
Posts: 576
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Do a search on chain lube to read some of the previous discussions. There are some good observations about the different categories of lubricants out there and their relative strengths and weaknesses. These include water-resistance, longevity, how much dirt they attract (or don't), how easy they are to apply and remove, etc. Pick one and try it out. If you don't like it, try a different one.

The one thing I would recommend is that you purchase a Wipperman or SRAM removable link so that you can periodically remove the chain to clean and relube. Most of the products in use today allow you to just wipe down the chain, apply, and wipe again, so you don't have to remove the chain often, but every so often I like to just take it off and do a deep clean.

I tried swishing the chain in cleaner in a 2 liter soda bottle, but I found it difficult to get the chain out thru the narrow neck. I now use a plastic "Simply Orange" orange juice bottle with a wide neck and it works great. Use a spoke to fish the chain back out. I usually rinse the chain in very hot water and just drape it over a chair back to dry, but you can use WD-40 or a hair dryer as well.
__________________
Doug

'72 Fuji Finest
'80 Austro-Daimler Inter10
'06 Fuji Team Issue
'06 Salsa Las Cruces
Nashbar Single Speed
dperreno is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-08, 01:18 AM   #23
BCRider
Senior Member
 
BCRider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: The 'Wack, BC, Canada
Bikes: Norco (2), Miyata, Canondale, Soma, Redline
Posts: 5,456
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by leob1 View Post
You want to start a bar fight on Bike Forums; just include the words "chain lube" in a post. Works every time.
Asking about chain lube or chain cleaning on a motorcycle forum is a guarantee of at least 10 pages of infighting as well....
BCRider is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-08, 04:12 PM   #24
Minnesnowtan
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: BallTeeMore, MaryLand
Bikes: 2007 Specialzed Sequoia
Posts: 6
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by BCRider View Post
Asking about chain lube or chain cleaning on a motorcycle forum is a guarantee of at least 10 pages of infighting as well....
Forget wax, petroleum products all all traditional methods. Use chunky peanut butter! That's what I use!
Minnesnowtan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-08, 05:11 PM   #25
jsharr
You Know!? For Kids!
 
jsharr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Just NW of Richardson Bike Mart
Bikes: '05 Trek 1200 / '90 Trek 8000 / '? Falcon Europa
Posts: 6,157
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
I used to use WD-40, 3 n 1, or whatever I could find in dad's garage when I was a kid. I never recall using grease on my chain.

Now that I am paying for the bikes and the lubes, I use quality stuff.

For the last 3 years or so, I have used Rock N Roll Gold. I love it. Drip onto slowly rotating chain, wipe it off and ride. It cleans and lubes and leaves the drivetrain silent.
__________________
Are you a registered member? Why not? Click here to register. It's free and only takes 27 seconds! Help out the forums, abide by our community guidelines.
Quote:
Originally Posted by colorider View Post
Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.
jsharr is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:29 AM.