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Old 02-12-10, 03:55 PM   #1
slipknot0129
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tips for cleaning bike with mud?

I rode my touring bike on my dirt roads and some parts of it had mud. My bike got muddy mostly on the wheels. I think my fenders helped it to not get muddy on the other parts of the bike. How should I clean my bike? How do you clean the gears and other parts around that area? Will water damage the gears? I dont want to mess up my bike by cleaning it wrong.
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Old 02-12-10, 04:07 PM   #2
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When I've gotten my MTB good and muddy I start by hosing it down, then I bring out a bucket of hot water, some detergent and a discarded washing up brush and go at it. Then a rinse and then I'm done. When it's dry I might have a go at the chain and such with a rag and some lube. On festive occasions I bring out the cloths, the car wax and the old tootbrush for a more thorough cleaning.

Generally speaking bikes are quite rugged, and as long as you don't go aiming a high-pressure washer straight at bearings you can was them pretty much as you please.
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Old 02-12-10, 04:10 PM   #3
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So I wont damage it by using a water hose on the whole bike?
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Old 02-12-10, 04:13 PM   #4
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Rather than use mud, I'd opt for soap and water, along with liberal aplications of a hose.......
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Old 02-12-10, 04:20 PM   #5
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Mud is a terrible cleaner. Don't clean your bike with it.
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Old 02-12-10, 04:47 PM   #6
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Use a bucket. Spray from a hose tends to go places it shouldn't. Keep the pressure low.
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Old 02-12-10, 05:07 PM   #7
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Use a bucket. Spray from a hose tends to go places it shouldn't. Keep the pressure low.
I'm inclined to just take a garden hose, put my finger over the end and have at it. Don't aim the jet at the hubs, and you should be ok. Or, let it be muddy.
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Old 02-12-10, 05:30 PM   #8
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wait 'till it dries, then dry brush it and wipe with a towel and paper towels. you can get a nice assortment of brushes at grocery stores and hardware stores. keep a couple brushes just for the drive train

if you have to use water - use a spray bottle or some windex. the less water the better.

forced water spray can force water and crude into drivetrain parts which currently do not have that crud embedded in them.

in a pinch you can use a gentle water spray just keep it away from the sealed bearing areas such as bottom bracket and hubs

but seriously - consider the dry brushing idea first - it's very safe for the bike! :-)
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Old 02-12-10, 05:31 PM   #9
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dry brushing is more abrasive.
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Old 02-12-10, 06:33 PM   #10
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soft brush
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Old 02-12-10, 06:59 PM   #11
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Rub abrasive mud particles against the finish with a soft brush? I don't know. I'd rather rinse them off while they are lubed with soapy water.
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Old 02-12-10, 07:17 PM   #12
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Even though people advise against it, I never had a problem with hosing it down and then padding it dry with an old towel. Just don't spray directly at any bearings or drivetrain parts. Lube the drivetrain afterward.
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Old 02-12-10, 10:14 PM   #13
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Mud is a terrible cleaner. Don't clean your bike with it.
I can't agree more.
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Old 02-12-10, 10:37 PM   #14
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I highly recommend against spraying your bike at even remotely high pressure. Bike's that people spray in order to clean are coined as "car wash bikes" in my shop. Often times, you end up getting the bike to look aesthetically pleasing, but muck up everything. I prefer a toothbrush and a rag.
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Old 02-12-10, 10:42 PM   #15
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Also, for the wheels I use a bigger brush (think like a small broom head) on the tires. Dip it in simple green water and get the water all over the top of the tire (I do ~8in segments going from the valve hole). Scrub scrub. Sidewall/rim. Scrub. Turn wheel. Dip in simple green water. Repeat.
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