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  1. #1
    Senior Member jamse's Avatar
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    Maintenance/Cleaning Single Speed IRO

    Alright, so I have had my bike for about two months now, an IRO Mark V Single Speed. It is a steal framed bike and I want to know how to take care of it. I have three questions:

    1. Frame Cleaning: I have been reading around on the forum that people use baby wipes on their frame, clean it in a tub, spray it down with a hose, use pledge, using car cleaning kits, but I am still confused the best way to take care of my steal framed baby. I figure I should try to wash my bike every month and wipe it down every week or after a dirty session. Is that a good rule of thumb? I wary to soak my bike or spray it down with a hose, since steal is more likely to rust than aluminum framed bikes, but if I were to put the bike in a tub or use a hose how do i protect the insides? Do I need to take the cranks, front fork, stem, and/or seat post off?

    2: Saddle Cleaning: My seat is an all white Specialized Alias, and recently when I was home in the states I would just use leather wipes, every few days to keep it clean? Is that the right thing to do? Are there any alternative ways to keep my saddle clean? Right now I am in Denmark and it seems to be raining every few days... and my saddle is getting dirtier than before in Missouri, should I go and buy leather wipes again? or is there a better way to clean my saddle and keep it clean.

    3. Chain cleaning: I have read that the general way to clean a your chain is to remove it from your bike, use degreaser and shake it up in a bottle, and put it back on and re-apply lube. So, far what I have been doing is just taking my chain off the cogs (because I cannot figure out how to take my chain off completely, do not know where the master link is), getting a small tetri cloth towel and wiping the cogs down and then run it around the chain a few times, then putting some lube on the towel and wiping the cogs end, then resetting the chain on the cogs, and then re-applying the lube, spin it a few times, wipe dry, then re-applying the lube, spin it a few times, and wipe off excess, and then let dry. I do not know if this is bad for my bike or not since I probably do not get 100% off the old oil off, but I think I get most of it.

    Also, any other suggestions about how to maintain my bike or information I should know would be great.
    Last edited by jamse; 08-08-08 at 11:01 AM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    I'm in the same boat with my new 925 Redline. In the short term I'm just riding it but there's a strip down and frame saver session in the cards for sometime early this fall. Once that's done I can wash it using my garden hose without fear. The spray being the same intensity that I'd water small to medium plants with. A bucket with soapy water and a dish washing brush does the cleaning.

    If you don't have a master link just get one of the chain cleaning gizmos and do it on the bike. You'll need to slip the chain off the rear and move the wheel ahead to get enough slack but it works well.
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

  3. #3
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    Baby wipes work well for the frame and are pretty cheap.

    Don't fret too much about the chain. There is NO reason why you would need to get all of the old oil out and replace it with new. A cleaner chain will shift better, but clearly you're not too worried about that. The chain will wear out a little sooner if there is a lot of grit inside the rollers, but this is single speed we're talking about here. The chains are cheap. You really only need it clean enough that when your pant leg or skin hits it you don't get too dirty.

    Chain cleaning ranks up there with frame material as one of the most controversial topics in cycling and is definately the most controversial in cycling maintenance. I fall on the side of "oil it when it squeaks or gets wet, wipe off the excess, and ride."
    The will to win is nothing without the will to prepare. -Juma Ikangaa

  4. #4
    Your mom
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    Chains are disposable. Single speeds exist so that you don't have to worry about maintenance. Ride it. Wipe it. Ride it some more. Buy a new one in 20 years.

  5. #5
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    I've had a few steel bikes in my time including a very nice steel Redline Monocog. On all my steel bikes I've found a point on the frame like the BB housing, where I could spray WD-40 inside the frame. I also would soak a rag in WD-40 and occasionally wipe my frame with it. Because of space constraints I had to leave my Redline outside in the rain and snow for the few years I owned it. When I wanted to sell it I decided to strip it and sell it for parts. While stripping the frame I was very suprised to find that there was no rust at all on the frame or any components. So I guess the WD-40 works pretty good.
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  6. #6
    Your mom
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    I've pulled apart dozens of frames in various stages of neglect, and while I've found some funny stuff in there (wasps, etc), I rarely find rust. Maybe 2-3 of said frames. I really think it's something that people worry about who don't have other things to worry about.

  7. #7
    Senior Member BCRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tellyho View Post
    I've pulled apart dozens of frames in various stages of neglect, and while I've found some funny stuff in there (wasps, etc), I rarely find rust. Maybe 2-3 of said frames. I really think it's something that people worry about who don't have other things to worry about.
    Good point and for the most part I'm with you. However I've also seen some pretty crusty BB shells when I opened them up. And it IS really wet around here. In a drier climate I'd not bother but in my case I like the frame saver option.
    Model airplanes are cool too!.....

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