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Old 09-10-13, 08:26 AM   #1
TiBikeGuy
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Autpmated Bike Wash - Qbike


Washing your bikes after a hard day of off road riding have become easier...But you still need to lube the chains after the wash.
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Old 09-11-13, 07:05 AM   #2
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The drying cycle is done by hand with a cursory towel wipe. The space in the rear wheel from seat tube to bottom bracket is more difficult to reach. The space between the chain ring and the bike frame is also difficult to reach. I don't see how the wipe down dry method does all this.
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Old 09-11-13, 08:23 AM   #3
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Interesting concept, especially for urban bike shops where the client base may not have the space or access to a hose to do their own cleaning. It's kinda hard to imagine that machine really doing a good job with what must be a pretty low pressure spray, especially for getting grime out of the cogs and pulley wheels. I'm sure it uses hot water and a degreaser phase, which would probably work pretty well. Still, that hand drying bit could get to be messy and time consuming, I'd think, if the washer missed some bits.

I dunno, but I like the idea and would certainly be willing to give it try for a reasonable fee if it were at a shop convenient to me (Two Wheel Tango, are you listening?!). If it could deliver an acceptable quality of clean, I could see bringing the bikes by every month or so, maybe twice a month in the messy seasons.
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Old 09-11-13, 08:34 AM   #4
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Video shows €3 for the normal wash and €4 for the intensive, which is like $4 and $5.50. I don't know if that's what they're suggesting, but certainly $2-$4 is more of what I was thinking. Given that most people don't even wash their bikes, cost is going to be a big deal for making this work, but I'm sure QBike knows more about the market potential than I do...so I'll shut up and just see if one shows up near me!
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Old 09-11-13, 09:03 AM   #5
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Looks like an automated pressure washer.... not good. Washing a bike can do more harm than good when it drives otherwise benign dirt and water into pivots and bearings where it can do real damage.
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Old 09-11-13, 04:42 PM   #6
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^^^ My thoughts exactly when I watched the vid. DO NOT WANT
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Old 09-11-13, 10:14 PM   #7
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I could easily see that catching on in Portland. Lots of commuter bikes and lots of rain/mud. I'm agreeing on the "DO NOT WANT" for high end bikes tho.
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Old 09-11-13, 11:11 PM   #8
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I could easily see that catching on in Portland. Lots of commuter bikes and lots of rain/mud. I'm agreeing on the "DO NOT WANT" for high end bikes tho.
Funny, cuz hi-end bikes have the best sealed equipment.
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Old 09-12-13, 12:20 PM   #9
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I think bike maintenance is best done by sentient beings who can choose where, how much or how little, and when. I'll confess that an automated car wash is a nice luxury, though...
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Old 09-12-13, 02:30 PM   #10
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Funny, cuz hi-end bikes have the best sealed equipment.
No they don't.
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Old 09-12-13, 05:41 PM   #11
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No they don't.
Do you really want to dispute the assertion that high end components are almost certainly better sealed than their cheap, low-end counterparts? Don't be a fool, my friend.
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Old 09-12-13, 05:52 PM   #12
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Old 09-13-13, 02:21 PM   #13
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Do you really want to dispute the assertion that high end components are almost certainly better sealed than their cheap, low-end counterparts? Don't be a fool, my friend.
I got two $6000 bikes on hand here. Plain bearings with no shields in the FD, RD, and shifters. BB, head set, and wheel bearings are standard cartridge bearings with very light seals to minimize drag. What's sealed worse on cheaper bikes?
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Old 09-14-13, 06:09 AM   #14
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I got two $6000 bikes on hand here. Plain bearings with no shields in the FD, RD, and shifters. BB, head set, and wheel bearings are standard cartridge bearings with very light seals to minimize drag. What's sealed worse on cheaper bikes?
Plenty of cheap bikes still use BMX style headsets that have no seals at all, and use cage bearings which, unlike cartridge bearings, are completely unprotected.

I don't have a pair of $6k bikes over here, but I do have a $300 one, and I was appalled by the low quality spec when I received it. I think that, when you play in the $800+ range so long, that you forget a) just how many cheap bikes are made and sold, and b) just how cheaply they're made. That was true for me, anyway.
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Old 09-14-13, 08:10 AM   #15
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Plenty of cheap bikes still use BMX style headsets that have no seals at all, and use cage bearings which, unlike cartridge bearings, are completely unprotected.

... I do have a $300 one, and I was appalled by the low quality spec when I received it....
I find it amazing that it's possible to by a complete functioning bike for $300 or less. Just think all the materials have to be sourced, the parts fabricated, the bike assembled, shipped and then still leave profit for your local Walmart. At that price, just frequently re-grease to the bearings, or buy a new one.
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Old 09-14-13, 10:47 AM   #16
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Funny, cuz hi-end bikes have the best sealed equipment.
Learned something new. Makes sense, but as you can tell by my screen name, I have no personal experience with the high end ones yet. Just assumed I'd be uncomfortable throwing a Colnago in there
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Old 09-14-13, 11:12 AM   #17
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I find it amazing that it's possible to by a complete functioning bike for $300 or less. Just think all the materials have to be sourced, the parts fabricated, the bike assembled, shipped and then still leave profit for your local Walmart. At that price, just frequently re-grease to the bearings, or buy a new one.
Yeah, I think you were confusing your world, where the low end starts at $1k, with the reality of the market, where the low end starts at $150. The difference between components on a $1.5k and $6k bike may not be that different in terms of seal quality, but stepping down into the $300 range is a whole different thing, and there are plenty of bikes, most of the bikes out there, that cost less than that.

You mentioned Walmart, so I quickly navigated over to their site, and clicking on the Adult Bikes category returned 352 results. Scanning those, I bet there weren't more than 8 that were over $300, and that included 2 electric assist bikes and a trike. Most were about half of that, average probably $200. $300 is the luxury range at Walmart.
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Old 09-14-13, 11:20 AM   #18
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Learned something new. Makes sense, but as you can tell by my screen name, I have no personal experience with the high end ones yet. Just assumed I'd be uncomfortable throwing a Colnago in there
Well, I'm not endorsing the Qbike or anything; I only know as much about as I could make out from the video above, but from that, it looks to me like the spray is pretty low pressure and quite fine, so I don't see any reason to assume it's going to any more harmful to a bike than getting caught out in a heavy rain. And given that quality bikes tend to have things like sealed cables and hubs, I'd say they're less likely to suffer any washing away of critical lubricant from bearing surfaces than cheaply spec'd bikes which don't. It doesn't even look like Qbike sprays directly on control levers and bar mounted shifters.
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Old 09-14-13, 02:51 PM   #19
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I would take my CX commuter to that car was but only a few times a year.
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Old 09-14-13, 07:33 PM   #20
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Can I get in the booth with my bike ?
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Old 09-14-13, 07:48 PM   #21
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I find it amazing that it's possible to by a complete functioning bike for $300 or less. Just think all the materials have to be sourced, the parts fabricated, the bike assembled, shipped and then still leave profit for your local Walmart. At that price, just frequently re-grease to the bearings, or buy a new one.
OT: It's called used my freind. That's how you get a great bike for under $300 or even under $200.

Back on Topic: I think this is great! I don't have access to a hose in my building. So I have to clean my bike by hand with Simple Green and an old towel. Hence it very rarely gets done unless the roads have been salted. I'd totally be willing to pay $4. I'd have to see the difference(s) between regular and intense to see if the extra buck fifty is worth it.
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