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chain maintenance/lube advice for gritty commute?

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chain maintenance/lube advice for gritty commute?

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Old 09-09-07, 04:25 PM
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mattkime
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chain maintenance/lube advice for gritty commute?

I have a triple borough commute - from brooklyn, into queens, and then manhattan. plenty of grit gets on my chain (not to mention my water bottle and sometimes my face) what is the recommended chain lube for a gritty commute like this? most lubes are just going to grab a lot of grit.

while we're on the topic, whats your chain maintenance habit?
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Old 09-09-07, 04:37 PM
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what chain lube are you using? I'll add it to my 'do not use' list.
lubing chain once a week with proper chain lube for my commuter.
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Old 09-09-07, 05:23 PM
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pj7
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I have found that Boeshield T-9 is a pretty good lube, it's about all I use anymore.
As for chain maintenence, I whipe the outside of the chain clean every once in a while and lube it when I hear it making noise. I *might* scrub it out once or twice a year. And my current chain has about 7000 miles on it... I need to replace it, and my casette.
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Old 09-09-07, 06:32 PM
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Matt, if your are getting grit and gunk on you, water bottle and chain, I would suggest adding fenders. I ride 30 mile RT daily in the dry southern cal suburbs, but I leave fenders on my bike year round, with a long mud guard on the front fender. I hate cleaning and lubing chains, and the fenders cut way down on the grit that is thrown into the front chain ring (and onto me and the rest of the bike) by the front tire. If I didn't ride with fenders, I would have to clean sandy grit out of my commute bike chain once a week or so. Also, since your NYC commute is probably on relatively flat terrain, I would use a single speed or internal gear hub and no derailers to reduce chain maintenance.

Today I cleaned and lubed my commuter bike chain. Once every 3 weeks or 400 to 500 miles. I use Pedro's Road Rage, one drip per link after wiping off the chain and all the cogs and pulleys front and rear. I let the chain lube soak in for a bit and backpedal the chain. Then I run the bike through all the gears slowly on the repair stand, wipe off the rear derailer pulleys and excess lube on the bottom side of the chain. Then I let it dry for a day before riding. This lets the lube soak into the chain and dry out on the surface.
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Old 09-10-07, 04:16 AM
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I throw my chain in a soda bottle with some paint thinner about every 400-miles and shake it for a couple of minutes. Then I put it back on the bike, wait a while for the thinner to evaporate, and add one drop of prolink gold per link. The chain ends up looking like new.
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Old 09-10-07, 05:26 AM
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Originally Posted by matthew_deaner View Post
I throw my chain in a soda bottle with some paint thinner about every 400-miles and shake it for a couple of minutes. Then I put it back on the bike, wait a while for the thinner to evaporate, and add one drop of prolink gold per link. The chain ends up looking like new.
That's almost my exact procedure, exept I use Pedro's citrus degreaser instead of paint thinner. Combined with a Sram chain that I can just snap apart, I can keep a chain looking like new for quite a while. I can get several thousand miles before I get even 1/16" wear over 12" of chain. I'll replace it after 1/16" "elongation".

Prolink has served me great as a chain lube in just about every condition I've used it. Georgia thunderstorms, dry dirt roads, you name it. Just wipe off all excess after it's had time to penetrate all the rollers and you won't have problems with grit sticking to the chain.

I use Boeshield for all my pivots because it seems to dry to more of a grease consitency than prolink. Again, wipe off any excess after it's had time to penetrate the parts and it's golden.
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Old 09-10-07, 06:32 AM
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I ride fixed 30 m RT and I have found that White Lightnig Chain lube works pretty well. It is a more wax based lube that once it "dries" 5-10 minutes after application lets the chain run very smoothly and picks up almost zero grime. I have also heard good things about some of the ceramic chain lubes out there.
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Old 09-10-07, 06:35 AM
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fordfasterr
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2 weeks ago I wanted to clean my entire drivetrain.... and I found myself out of regular bike shop-style chain lube and the green degreaser stuff...

so I grabbed a can of engine degreaser, back-spun the crank and sprayed it all over the chain, chainrings, and cassette...

once it was fully saturated I let it sit for about 5 minutes and then I hit it with a water hose and back-spun it more....


The results were amazing. For the first time in over a year I could see the shiny metal from the cassette, and the entire chain was looking NEW again !!!!!!

I used some motorcycle chain lube called CHAIN WAX on the chain and it seems to work well. So far its held up well, and still looks shiny and clean.


Good luck !
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Old 09-10-07, 06:50 AM
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I use the Park Tool Chain Cleaner thing (that blue thing that you fill with some citrus degreaser and then water a couple times to rinse) let it dry over night or during a saturday afternoon. Then hit it with some T-9 or whatever chain lube was on sale (seriously... I can't really tell if one is better than another). Then off we go.

The Park Tool cleaner always gets it so clean that the chain looks new again.

then every 3rd time or so, if the weather permits, I soak the bike with citrus degreaser, all over, and brush it and rinse it, the changers and chain rings and cassette.

Last edited by Sigurdd50; 09-10-07 at 07:20 AM.
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Old 09-10-07, 12:23 PM
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I use Pedro's for lube and cleaning both. I've also been told that the biggest danger with a gritty/dusty commute is having too much lube on the chain, so it'll gunk up. Clean often, lube sparingly.
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