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What's your method for cleaning up old bikes?

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What's your method for cleaning up old bikes?

Old 06-23-12, 06:55 AM
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What's your method for cleaning up old bikes?

Anyone have any sure-fire ways of cleaning up those older bikes that need a little TLC to sparkle once again?
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Old 06-23-12, 07:13 AM
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This is my SOP for cleaning a bike:
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Old 06-23-12, 07:15 AM
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Starts with the good ole wash. Then comes the scrubbing to remove the grease. With a clean bike you can now assess the condition and get going on reconditioning. Bearings.....both wheel hubs, headset, bottom bracket and pedals all have bearing sets that need examining, regreasing and adjusting. Brakes need cable housings and cables, new pads (sometimes can use the old ones), then adjusting. Wheels need truing, maybe tubes and tires, check the rim strip. Drivetrain, check/lube or replace with new chain, replace shifter cables and housings if needed, adjust limiters on derailleurs and spin the crank to see how it sounds and shifts. Then comes cosmetics like bar tape and hoods, maybe the seat.

Then comes the fun.
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Old 06-23-12, 08:46 AM
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Spray down with white lightning bike wash and let sit in the shade a few, then clean carefully with a pressure washer prior to complete tear down. rusty bits get the oa soak paint gets anything from a simple cleaner wax to a full 2000 grit wet sand depending on condition. aluminum parts I usually clean with neverdull and asses their condition, then either leave the patina intact or occasionally polish. All cables and grease are replaced as well as housing and tape. Tires and tubes normally as well. braking surfaces cleaned carefully with fine scotch brite and wiped with brake parts cleaner to remove any oils. on re- assembly all bearings are replaced and packed with fresh synthetic grease, threads are chased, bb and head tube faced, fork crown faced as well as frame checked for true and " adjusted" as needed.
Ride and enjoy.
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Old 06-23-12, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by auchencrow
This is my SOP for cleaning a bike:
  • Take it down to the bare frame
  • WD40 to remove all grease
  • Wash with Dawn dish detergent and water
  • Wipe off all residue with Windex
  • Treat frame with Meguiar's Scratch-X
  • Polish with Meguiar's Tech wax
  • Components washed in Simple Green taking care not to soak alloy parts too long.
  • Stubborn tar removed with Goof-off (only as needed).
  • De-anodize alloy parts (as needed) with EZ-off (extreme care)
  • Sand alloy bits to 2000 grit
  • Polish alloy with Mother's mag polish
  • Remove any rust from chromed parts with OA, rinse.
  • Polish Chrome with Tech wax
Wouldn't disagree with any of this. I don't always work in order though.
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