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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 12-30-13, 10:49 AM   #26
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ThermionicScott,

Those mudflaps are awesome. Can you get 'em with Yosemite Sam sayin', "Back off!"
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Old 12-30-13, 11:30 AM   #27
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We don't have this kind of icy problem here in central Texas - Fact is when it gets below 30 we stay off the roads if for nothing else just to survive the cars driven by idiots who have no idea what ice may mean...

But when I was stationed in Germany 1970's I remember the MPs had to keep their motorcycles and bicycles protected - They had a mix of a light weight oil LSA (military light weight weapons oil) mixed with MoDiesel fuel and sprayed the under carriage of the motorcycles and certain parts of the bicycles before taking them out - At return they would immediately hose down the bikes with water and respray and then park them in a garage just above freezing to dry - They were religious about this both the American MP's and German Jager's...

Skyped one of my old Boy Scouts now stationed in Grafenwöhr (Grafenvire) - He said they still do this and yes they still have bicycles for back up - He said they use stuff out of old 55 gal drums marked "Missile Cleaning water displacement fluid Non- Lubricant" or something like that - He said rumor is its left over from the 60s and is nothing more than WD-40 - So what they do is spray with WD-40 before taking out and then rinse with water and spray again - He also said that regular lubricating maintenance is done on all vehicles summer or winter - WD-40 has never been a lubricant but I have to admit its a dam good cleaned agent - When you consider that warm dry days in Northern Germany only occur for about 5-6 weeks I can see why they are so diligent about protecting their equipment...

Summary?... lightly spray your bikes pertinent areas down with generic WD-40 - Ride Ride Ride - Rinse and then spray again - To dry inside...

Always remembering that WD-40 is not a lubricant...
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Old 12-30-13, 12:26 PM   #28
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...
Always remembering that WD-40 is not a lubricant...
I think you're referring to "The WD-40" that we all are familiar with; the product that first came out of the market that claims over a hundred ways to use and can now be bought almost anywhere from home furnishing stores to the ubiquitous big box stores.

But just to clarify that they now have a new line of products specifically for bikes. Check out WD-40 Bike. So the argument that it's not a lubricant cannot be made in sweeping comment anymore.

Last edited by Shinjukan; 12-30-13 at 12:30 PM. Reason: rephrasing
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Old 12-30-13, 02:46 PM   #29
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I use a gallon jug of hot water and rinse off any snow or slush, frozen bits. Then I let it drip dry in the garage. I try to clean the chain at least once a month. I also use a grunge guard on my rear D, that helps keep the gunk off of it. I rarely wipe my frame cause I like it grungy looking. less appealing that way, I figure.
On the subject of greasing your cables. I've been doing that over 25 years. It always made the bike shift smoother. And it works great in winter. My rear D hardly ever freezes up in the bitter cold. And I'll also occasionally put a drop of oil in the top of the rear cable housing to let it work itself down.

Last edited by scoatw; 12-31-13 at 04:29 PM.
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Old 12-30-13, 08:20 PM   #30
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Awesome insight guys! Unfortunately, I live in an apartment building (though each unit owner gets a little 1 car garage) so no running water outside for me to rinse my bike off, and it'd be a pain to get it up to my shower without mucking up everything along the way :/ I checked on my bike when I got back from a weeklong trip to Iowa yesterday, and nothing appears to have corroded (whew!). Methinks for the time being, I'll stick with lubing it religiously and brushing off all the goop that I can until she can get a proper cleaning before the trails open up in the spring. Those fenders with mudflaps do look neat though!
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Old 12-31-13, 04:28 PM   #31
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Awesome insight guys! Unfortunately, I live in an apartment building (though each unit owner gets a little 1 car garage) so no running water outside for me to rinse my bike off, and it'd be a pain to get it up to my shower without mucking up everything along the way :/ I checked on my bike when I got back from a weeklong trip to Iowa yesterday, and nothing appears to have corroded (whew!). Methinks for the time being, I'll stick with lubing it religiously and brushing off all the goop that I can until she can get a proper cleaning before the trails open up in the spring. Those fenders with mudflaps do look neat though!
When I was living in an apartment. That's when I started using the gallon plastic jug. I'd fill it up in the kitchen sink and then go outside and rinse the bike off. I stored it indoors in those days versus the garage now. And storing it indoors is definitely better on the bike.
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Old 12-31-13, 05:32 PM   #32
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In below freezing temps I clean it off the same way I clean my garden tractor and snow plow after clearing the driveway. Blow it off with the air hose and hit any remaining ice with windshield de-icer in a spray bottle, the air hose usually does a pretty good job though. Let it soak awhile, blow it off again and then give it a few strategic squirts of light oil as needed.
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Old 12-31-13, 10:25 PM   #33
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When I was living in an apartment. That's when I started using the gallon plastic jug. I'd fill it up in the kitchen sink and then go outside and rinse the bike off. I stored it indoors in those days versus the garage now. And storing it indoors is definitely better on the bike.
There's an idea. I don't really have room to keep a bunch of bikes inside, but maybe I should stick a thermometer in my garage and see how cold it gets when it's freezing outside. I say this because I noticed that a lot of the ice/snow that was in between my cassette sprockets melted off, though I don't think it ever got above freezing out while I was away. Then maybe a warm water rinse from a jug would be a viable option.


Using my air compressor would be great, but last time I ran it in the garage I was told it counted as one of my 3 strikes towards eviction. As such, it sits in the back of my garage until I take it to whatever driveway I borrow to fix my car in :/

Last edited by awfulwaffle; 12-31-13 at 10:28 PM.
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Old 01-08-14, 08:37 AM   #34
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My winter ride is a 2006 Gary FIsher Montare, and now my new Trek 520. After each ride I hose it off with warm water( I have a garden hose Y fitting that goes to both hot and cold water spigots). I than dry it with an air compressor set to 30 PSI with a high volume nozzle and am cautious about not forcing water where it should not be forced. Wipe dry and spray with Finish Line wet weather chain lube. Total time about 15 minutes.

After a few rides I run the chain through a Pedro's chain cleaner and give it a wash down with car wash soap and a clean rag. I find the bags of soft towels from the local home center work best. They are soft and after a few uses I just toss them.

Last edited by Ghazmh; 01-08-14 at 06:20 PM.
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Old 01-08-14, 12:04 PM   #35
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I fill a bucket with cold water (it doesn't freeze as quickly as hot water when it's really cold), douse the bike with half the water, then use a light bristle brush to loosen any crud. I use the rest of the water to rinse. Most times I do need to get a second bucket of water to make sure it's rinsed completely. I then bounce it a few times, wipe it down with a throw away rag and do a light lube.
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Old 01-08-14, 12:36 PM   #36
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Took my wheels off, grabbed a bucket and brush and brought the frame in the shower with me...scrubbed the frame and mechanisms, rinsed, did the wheels & tires... Dried with a towel, brought it outside and threw on some Rock-n-Roll extreme lube...voila, done. 15 minutes.
Think i'll give this method a try when i get home from work.
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Old 01-08-14, 12:40 PM   #37
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If the temperature is above 25 degrees F I use a bucket of hot water with some laundry detergent and huge sponge to wash my bike. When temperatures are too cold for water I use a product called White Lightening Clean Streak. It is a little expensive but a very good product for spray cleaning the derailleur pivot points, brake rotors, and brake pads. Then, I spray the derailleur pivot points and chain with TriFlow. Icecyclist.
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Old 01-08-14, 08:05 PM   #38
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I added an extension to my front fender last night and took it on a snowy, slushy, gritty commute today. The crank, chain, and frame stayed as clean as they were when I set out this morning.



Have fun cleaning your bikes, though, guys.
NOW I have a proper mudflap!

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