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Stupid chain cleaning question

Old 04-08-17, 01:18 PM
  #1  
scale
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Stupid chain cleaning question

I have a couple of new kmc chains.

Typically i use SRAM

KMC seems to come with a coating of grease or sticky goop on them likey not lube but to keep them from tarnishing/rusting while on the shelf. I cannot get this crap off. I have been through 2 baths of industrial degreaser and still they are sticky.....

SRAM has this as well but it comes off much more easy.

I am thinking of trying a soak in a bit of unleaded gas at this point to see if that will do it. Simple green is much much too wimpy and the stuff i normally use which is strong stuff......isnt doing it.

Id like to get them cleaned off and then re-wax them for use. Getting them clean is quite the challenge.
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Old 04-08-17, 01:28 PM
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mineral spirits will probably work very well. I would not use gasoline.
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Old 04-08-17, 01:37 PM
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You are not supposed to take that stuff off. It is lube.
Maybe you take it off... if you use wax
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Old 04-08-17, 01:47 PM
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That "goop" is excellent lube. New KMC chains run dead silent and schmoooooth. Dead silent.
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Old 04-08-17, 02:16 PM
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I just put mineral spirits in a clean rag and wipe down the outer surface. Like mentioned above, it's great lube. KB
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Old 04-08-17, 02:34 PM
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Let me suggest another light lubricant. Diesel fuel. Get a small plastic bottle with a drop dispenser tip. Fill with diesel. Put about ten drops of diesel on the new KMC chain. It will loosen the sticky stuff up & make chain come alive.
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Old 04-08-17, 03:13 PM
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...mineral spirits or diesel as a lubricant is are new ones on me. Makes about as much sense as stripping off the original lube on a KMC chain, though.
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Old 04-08-17, 03:38 PM
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As per Sheldon Brown:
Factory Lube

"New chains come pre-lubricated with a grease-type lubricant which has been installed at the factory. This is an excellent lubricant, and has been made to permeate all of the internal interstices in the chain. The chain and this lubricant need to be warmed during application.
This factory lube is superior to any lube that you can apply after the fact.

Some people make the bad mistake of deliberately removing this superior lubricant. Don't do this!
The factory lubricant all by itself is usually good for several hundred miles of service if the bike is not ridden in wet or dusty conditions. It is best not to apply any sort of lube to a new chain until it is clearly needed, because any wet lube you can apply will dilute the factory lube.
"

There is nothing like the performance of a newly installed chain.

The "factory lube" is the best! (As mentioned above : Quiet, quiet, quiet!)

After cutting the chain to length and installing, to get rid of the "tackiness", just spin it through a rag (terry cloth works best) that has been lightly "misted" with some WD40. A dozen turns of the crank is all it takes...

Repeat this after the first couple of rides and you'll have the best lubed chain (for a couple hundred kms/miles!) that won't be a "dust/sand" magnet.
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Old 04-08-17, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by scale View Post
AM has this as well but it comes off much more easy.

I am thinking of trying a soak in a bit of unleaded gas ...
Please do not ever use gasoline as a cleaning solvent.

It is it toxic through skin absorption or inhalation of vapors and will cause dermatitis. It is highly flammable, and its vapors are explosive and will travel a long way to an ignition source. It is a suspected carcinogen.
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Old 04-08-17, 07:43 PM
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i had a gallon of mineral spirits i had forgotten about. I used some of that and it worked great. Next time i will try just wiping it from the plates. That crap they put on the chains is nasty stuff. Ive got a couple bottles of rock and roll on hand. That stuff is fantastic......and im going to try some home brew with paraffin wax, oil and xylene at some point here. I have heard that is a good mix.

I agree....gasoline=dumb. I used to clean auto parts with it all the time in a pinch.
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Old 04-08-17, 07:50 PM
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Running a fairly new KMC chain on my commuter bike - loving that factory lube.
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Old 04-08-17, 07:56 PM
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Originally Posted by trailangel View Post
You are not supposed to take that stuff off. It is lube.
Maybe you take it off... if you use wax
No it's not. Not on KMC at least. It's a rust prevention coating, similar to what is found on bare metal or new tools. It's sticky like hell. I cleaned mine last year using biodegradable degreaser in my chain cleaner.

Last edited by SylvainG; 04-08-17 at 08:02 PM.
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Old 04-08-17, 09:21 PM
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I have had complete success using this 4-step process in an ultrasound cleaner:

1. Odorless mineral spirits
2. Denatured alcohol
3. Odorless mineral spirits
4. Paint thinner

I don't know that every step is required, but it does work on my KMC 10-speed chains. Just need to toss them in the wax crock pot and good to go.

scott s.
.
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Old 04-09-17, 08:12 AM
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KMC chains come with the best lube they will ever see.
From the KMC FAQ:
"ARE THE CHAINS READY TO BE USED RIGHT OUT OF THE BOX?
Yes, all chains have been pre-greased at the factory and are ready to ride right out of the box (some chains must be fitted to length according to your bike’s exact specifications). If you feel that there is too much grease, use a towel and wipe off excess grease from the plates only, avoiding the rollers. For more information on chain maintenance please look at our chain maintenance guide located on the home page."

--
Ragnar
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Old 04-09-17, 09:10 AM
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^^Thanks for that.
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Old 04-09-17, 09:28 AM
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Whether or not any one new chain has a rust inhibitor or a lube when unpackaged is some of the question. Is this the type of lube one likes on their cogs and rings, is the rest. As most chain lube choices are preference I see no issue with stripping off the factory stuff and using what one has learned works for them. Andy.
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Old 04-09-17, 01:38 PM
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Some guy on facebook said shaving cream like gillet cleans chains well.

I haven't tried though.
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Old 04-09-17, 01:53 PM
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SRAM: GLEITMO™ — biking's best chain lubricant — coats chain for superior protection against friction and dirt.
https://www.sram.com/sram/mountain/p...s/pc-890-chain

Gleitmo comes in a variety of types: https://www.fuchs.com/us/en/brands/a-k/gleitmo/
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Old 04-09-17, 02:03 PM
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I ride a new chain 1000 miles before I clean and relube it. Wipe the chain down with a paper towel or rag after a few rides to get rid of the excess.
Read and learn grasshopper.
Chain care, wear and skipping by Jobst Brandt
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Old 04-09-17, 02:37 PM
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Originally Posted by ammarolli View Post
Some guy on facebook said shaving cream like gillet cleans chains well.

I haven't tried though.
No, shaving cream makes a great chain lube!
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Old 04-09-17, 03:45 PM
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...so this actually turned into another chain lube thread ?
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Old 04-09-17, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by ragnar.jensen View Post
KMC chains come with the best lube they will ever see.
From the KMC FAQ:
"ARE THE CHAINS READY TO BE USED RIGHT OUT OF THE BOX?
Yes, all chains have been pre-greased at the factory and are ready to ride right out of the box (some chains must be fitted to length according to your bike’s exact specifications). If you feel that there is too much grease, use a towel and wipe off excess grease from the plates only, avoiding the rollers. For more information on chain maintenance please look at our chain maintenance guide located on the home page."

--
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Well may be the KMC chain I bought from Amazon wasn't one because that thing on the chain wasn't lube. It stuck to my fingers almost like honey.
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Old 04-09-17, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by SylvainG View Post
No it's not. Not on KMC at least. It's a rust prevention coating, similar to what is found on bare metal or new tools. It's sticky like hell. I cleaned mine last year using biodegradable degreaser in my chain cleaner.
Yes, it is.

Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
SRAM: GLEITMO™ — biking's best chain lubricant — coats chain for superior protection against friction and dirt.
https://www.sram.com/sram/mountain/p...s/pc-890-chain

Gleitmo comes in a variety of types: https://www.fuchs.com/us/en/brands/a-k/gleitmo/
The lubrication that bicycle chain manufacturers use is probably a proprietary mixture but Fuchs sells a spray lubricant called Gleitmo 582 for bicycle chains. It is described as

... a white, adhesive semi-synthetic grease with solid lubricants
The "solid lubricant" above is likely a soft wax which is just like oils but with a higher molecular weight and longer molecular chain. It is nothing like the "oils" that most people use and more closely related to "wax" lubricants that most people abhor.

It is "okay" in my experience but it tends to collect dirt and grit. It will end up as black and nasty as a heavily oiled chain.

Originally Posted by Andrew R Stewart View Post
Whether or not any one new chain has a rust inhibitor or a lube when unpackaged is some of the question. Is this the type of lube one likes on their cogs and rings, is the rest. As most chain lube choices are preference I see no issue with stripping off the factory stuff and using what one has learned works for them. Andy.
Exactly. It makes little to no difference.

Because I don't like the resulting black and nasty chain that results from leaving the factory lubricant on, I strip it off before I install the chain and use much cleaner wax based lubricants. It makes little to no difference on length of chain wear. I get about 3000 miles before the chain starts to show 0.75 to 1.0% wear and the chain needs to be changed to avoid wearing other drivetrain parts.

And, yes, I know that there are people out there who will declare that their secret sauce method of chain care gives them 100,000 mile of use out of their chains, us normal mortals get about 3000 miles. The difference between what I do and what someone else does probably doesn't matter with the exception that I don't have to constantly wipe my chain to keep it clean.

And, before someone from a wetter area chimes in, I have used wax based lubricants in every state in the US except Florida, Alaska and North Dakota. I've even used it is some bits of Canada and I've certainly used it in the rain. It doesn't melt off and it doesn't perform any differently than an oil based lubricant would.
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Old 04-09-17, 06:44 PM
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Originally Posted by SylvainG View Post
Well may be the KMC chain I bought from Amazon wasn't one because that thing on the chain wasn't lube. It stuck to my fingers almost like honey.

Lube has a wide range of tactle natures. What it feels like to the skin isn't the best judge of the lubrative qualities. Andy
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