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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 01-08-10, 09:11 AM   #1
habals
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what maintenance should I do after rainy & snowy ride?

I was first wondering about what to do after riding on snow & half melted road.
I'm sure road de-icer won't be good for the bike.
And now I'm wondering what is the proper maintenance job after a wet ride in general?
Should I let the bike dry and wipe it out with a rag or brush, and apply lubricants?
Anything else I need to do?
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Old 01-08-10, 09:16 AM   #2
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I don't do anything. The bike does fine.

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Old 01-08-10, 09:29 AM   #3
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I brush the snow and sludge off, wipe it dry with a cloth, brush the chain and cogs and put some lube on the chain. It takes like 2-3 minutes.

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Old 01-08-10, 10:02 AM   #4
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Salt dissolves in water Which is good, because although mine is by my desk at the moment, I'm waiting for someone to say something. The puddle under it is gone, but it's still a disgusting mess!
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Old 01-08-10, 10:07 AM   #5
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Since I ride on gravel roads, on a wet ride the drivetrain gets soaked with fine clay particles. If that happens I have to lube the chain (the stuff leeches out all the lubricants) - if I don't, the chain will be stiff as a board (seriously, will not bend without grabbing and forcing each link to bend).

Other than that, I don't do anything.

The only thing apart from the chain I've ever lubed on my bike is that I spray some teflon/wax lube onto the deraillers 3 or 4 times a year. 20,000 miles so far and no real problems. I am not on the original hubs, but that's not because they failed, I just went to disc brakes up front and the rear axle broke and I had to replace that. I like $300 bikes; I don't have to care all that much about it, and it serves me very well.
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Old 01-08-10, 10:20 AM   #6
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I don't do anything right after the ride... but once every other week (depending on sludge/salt build-up) I take it to the local shop to get hosed down with hot water... brakes/wheels cleaned... etc. they have a deal where you pay $Xx for adhoc winter service. Its convienent.

it would be more convienent if the place I lived at had decent accomodations so that I could hose the bike down with warm water... but no.
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Old 01-08-10, 10:21 AM   #7
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Just the basic wipe-down. Don't leave the bike wet is all, rust will start to form. Even if the frame isn't steel, a lot of bits and parts holding the bike together are...

It is extra important to keep your chain clean (within reason) and well-lubed.

At the end of every winter season, I make it a point to overhaul my bikes completely. I take my bike completely apart and everything from chainrings to hubs get inspected, cleaned, regreased, and put back into duty.
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Old 01-08-10, 10:47 AM   #8
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something is better than nothing. approach it as you might your car. open the hood and look around. you'll see things to do. things to check, things to wipe, things to lube and things to leave be for now. here's a mistake to avoid: I rode in a snow storm and the bike got wicked wet and I let it dry in the basement new years eve without touching it. when i checked a few days later as my pre-ride checkup (the day before) I noticed the chain was rusty. I wiped it and then lubed it with penetrating oil instead of the new white lighting wax chain lube I got as a gift. the ride the next day featured some chain skip on two of the low gears. just our of the blue? from the wrong lube? don't know yet, I need to ride it more
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Old 01-08-10, 11:29 AM   #9
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What kind of lube do you recommend? Any specific type or brand? I have one from nashbar which only cost $1.
I've heard that WD-30 is not recommended.
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Old 01-08-10, 11:49 AM   #10
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well, chain lube for the chain. depending on your conditions and temperatures there are several to choose from. right now I'm using what are called dry lubes or wax lubes. they are actually liquid and come in squeeze bottles

other items can be lubricated such as cables and housings and the derailers. there are many lubricants out there for these items and different opinions too :-)

keep any lubricant off your rims, I like keeping my rims clean with solvents. post this question in the mechanics area.

WD40 can have some very limited use for cleaning purposes but you are best not using it until you understand where and when to use it.
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Old 01-08-10, 11:56 AM   #11
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Road salt will attack aluminum and magnesium components. I ride in Montreal winters and I put vaseline on the spoke nipples to prevent them from freezing up so you can no longer turn them. I also have a suspension fork with magnesium parts and I spray mud off on them.

After every ride I hose the bike down with very little water pressure so as not to force water into seals. I relube the chain every 3rd day.
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Old 01-08-10, 12:14 PM   #12
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Little or nothing right after a ride. A little chain lube on the chain and cleaner/lubricant spray elsewhere every so often. I'd like to do a better cleaning job once in a while, but I don't have anyplace to do it without getting soaking wet in sub-freezing weather.

Ironically, some of the cheap components on the bike are actually an advantage in the winter: The plastic gears in the Shimano Tourney derailleur don't rust or corrode.
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Old 01-08-10, 12:19 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artesc View Post
Just the basic wipe-down. Don't leave the bike wet is all, rust will start to form. Even if the frame isn't steel, a lot of bits and parts holding the bike together are...
This has not been a problem for me. I don't wash my bike all winter, or even wipe it down. I get home, it's covered with slush, ice and salt water, I roll it into the garage and walk away. It's a cheap bike, 5 years and 20,000 miles old. There is surface rust on all the steel parts, but so what? It doesn't affect how they work.

The only problem I've had is not things rusting through, but screws seizing in the frame. Once I realized that happened (and honestly, it would happen on my ride regardless of whether I cleaned the bike or not), I just remove all the mounting screws on my bike, once in spring and once in fall, and grease the threads. End of problem.

In the summer I blast it with a pressure washer every week or two.
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Old 01-08-10, 12:34 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by jimblairo View Post
I put vaseline on the spoke nipples to prevent them from freezing up so you can no longer turn them.
I think that's good care and maintenance that extends beyond just spokes.
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Old 01-08-10, 12:57 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by habals View Post
What kind of lube do you recommend? Any specific type or brand? I have one from nashbar which only cost $1.
I've heard that WD-30 is not recommended.
Chain specific, synthetic, not too thick and too sticky for the conditions. Finish Line Cross Country is good for most conditions. Thick, sticky lube = messy drivetrain.

Adam
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Old 01-08-10, 01:11 PM   #16
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Finish Line Cross Country is good for most conditions.
Yep, works for me....
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Old 01-08-10, 01:42 PM   #17
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I have Mobil 1 5W30 motor oil at home.
It seems somebody out there uses it as a bike lube.
http://www.mtbr.com/cat/accessories/...89_131crx.aspx
However, I can see the mixed response.
What do you guys think of using motor oil?
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Old 01-08-10, 08:52 PM   #18
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I like to lay around in front of my heater. or just get to work if it is that way. As for the bike I roll it in the garage and say good night.
No salts on the roads around here, we use cinder.
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