I know some of these issues have been discussed, so I'll try to make this as politics free as possible.
I have a Trek 7.3FX, and I've now put 100 and some change miles on it. I looked at the drivetrain the other day and the thing is FILTHY. Still nice and lubed (the factory stuff), but there's dirt and grit everywhere. I realized wiping it off with a paper towel with some WD-40 wasn't going to cut it...
This is the chain that comes with the 7.3FX. I didn't see anything in the way of a masterlink to take the chain off. There's one pin that's darker then the rest, but I'm not sure what that is.
Is the easiest thing to do in this situation to buy one of those Chain Cleaner tools (Nashbar, Finish Line....) and put some mineral spirits, citrus degreaser, or some dish soap and water and run my chain through that?
Is it worth the effort to try to install a master link on a chain to do the dip-in-solvent-and-shake-bottle method?
Also, I'm assuming I should get a brush and clean some of the dirt off the cogs/cassette teeth/in between the wedges of the casette too....