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To eliminate all chances, to lube chain or not?

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To eliminate all chances, to lube chain or not?

Old 11-21-07, 08:10 PM
  #1  
knotty
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To eliminate all chances, to lube chain or not?

A very reputable and knowledgeable person who I always refer to and highly respect, (SB) says new chains come prelubed with a superior lube from the factory. I assume this must be true because the chain instructions do not mention lubing before use.

I just installed a Shimano HG70 chain and wanted to know your thoughts on this chain factory prelubing because if for some reason it was not true, I would be running the chain dry, not good!

To be positive, would you lube new Shimano chains?

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Old 11-21-07, 08:19 PM
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I don't believe that stuff to be lube, but I could be wrong. I think it's just some type of anti-rust stuff to keep the chain looking good.

I always clean, and lube all my new chains. Then I know what's on there for sure.

... Brad
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Old 11-21-07, 08:26 PM
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Originally Posted by bac View Post
I don't believe that stuff to be lube, but I could be wrong. I think it's just some type of anti-rust stuff to keep the chain looking good.

I always clean, and lube all my new chains. Then I know what's on there for sure.

... Brad
+1. It is (like) cosmoline, a protective coating. When installing a new chain, give it a solvent bath to remove the stuff (lacquer thinner will kill the cosmoline well), dry it out, then install and lube.
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Old 11-21-07, 08:28 PM
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Factory lube all the way.

I never strip a chain with solvent either.

To quote Sheldon:

"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.
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."

Last edited by jwbnyc; 11-21-07 at 08:31 PM. Reason: adding quote
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Old 11-21-07, 08:29 PM
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As if your going to get a definitive answer to THAT question.
I'm pretty sure it is lube (see what I mean). I run new chains for 300-500 miles, then start my usual lubing routine. Eventually all the factory stuff is flushed out, and never really notice any difference in sound or performance. YMMV
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Old 11-21-07, 08:40 PM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by jwbnyc View Post
Factory lube all the way.

I never strip a chain with solvent either.

To quote Sheldon:

"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.
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."
+1
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Old 11-21-07, 08:41 PM
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Always check with Sheldon first.

'Nuff said.
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Old 11-21-07, 08:42 PM
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I have to clean the chain so it's spotless before applying the Dumonde Tech lube, so I clean a new chain.
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Old 11-21-07, 09:16 PM
  #9  
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While we are discussiong chains, how long to you go between switching chains?

I have been told to swap a chain out every 3000 miles because a worn chain will make your other drive components wear out faster. I have not followed this advice yet - but it sounds like cheap insurance. Sheldon Brown does talk about how a worn chain will wear out the sprocket to match.
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Old 11-21-07, 09:27 PM
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I don't use milage, I use a Park tool to measure it, or a ruler.
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Old 11-21-07, 09:56 PM
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Interesting, the opinions one gets.

Here's mine - your bike will shift like crap if you leave that grease on there. It is not designed to work in a precision transmission, it's designed to keep the chain from rusting while it spends part of its life sitting in a damp basement below a bike store in Toledo.

Remove it with either white mineral spirits or citrus based cleaner, install it and then lube with whatever you use. (I prefer the famous 4:1 home brew)

It's interesting that Sheldon had that written up. I made the mistake of installing a chain once without cleaning it first, figuring I'd try the "superior lubrication." Between the bad shifting and the coating of dirt and dog hairs, I learned my lesson pretty fast.
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Old 11-21-07, 10:09 PM
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The finger test will tell you if the factory coating is a good lube. Run your fingertips back and forth along the top of the chain. if the rollers turn easily, it's a good lube. More likely, it will be a sticky mess. Clean it and lube. bk
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Old 11-21-07, 11:42 PM
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Originally Posted by BluesDawg View Post
Always check with Sheldon first.

'Nuff said.
The ShelBroCo Bicycle Chain Cleaning System

Hey, he said to check with Sheldon first

Richard
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Old 11-22-07, 03:48 AM
  #14  
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the GLEITMO™ lube that protects against dirt and friction

The above quote copied and pasted from the SRAM product description.

SRAM says it.........Sheldon says it........why does this myth about "cosmoline" keep getting reborn.

Last edited by maddmaxx; 11-22-07 at 04:48 AM.
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Old 11-22-07, 08:17 AM
  #15  
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Stripping the chain may depend on what you use for regular lube as well. I use Purple Extreme, http://www.purpleextreme.com/, and it requires you remove any other lubes first since it is a synthetic and does not interact well with petroleum based lubricants.
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Old 11-22-07, 08:24 AM
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Originally Posted by George View Post
I don't use milage, I use a Park tool to measure it, or a ruler.
Right on. Why guess when you can measure.
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Old 11-22-07, 08:28 AM
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Originally Posted by terry b View Post
Interesting, the opinions one gets.

Here's mine - your bike will shift like crap if you leave that grease on there. It is not designed to work in a precision transmission, it's designed to keep the chain from rusting while it spends part of its life sitting in a damp basement below a bike store in Toledo.
.
Might just depend on the chain manufacturer. My Campy Ultra Narrow Record chain worked VERY well without stripping. After about 300 miles I began to lube as normal with Pro Link Gold. It is absolutely quiet and shifts flawlessly. 2000 miles so far and no wear (or stretch if you prefer that word). By the way, it works much better with Campy 10 speed stuff than the Wippermann 10 speed chain.
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Old 11-22-07, 08:32 AM
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A new chain is ready to go...right out of the box.
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Old 11-22-07, 08:36 AM
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Originally Posted by RockyMtnMerlin View Post
Might just depend on the chain manufacturer. My Campy Ultra Narrow Record chain worked VERY well without stripping. After about 300 miles I began to lube as normal with Pro Link Gold. It is absolutely quiet and shifts flawlessly. 2000 miles so far and no wear (or stretch if you prefer that word). By the way, it works much better with Campy 10 speed stuff than the Wippermann 10 speed chain.
+1, I've tried a few different lubes, but I end up going back to Pro Link Gold.
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Old 11-22-07, 09:17 AM
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For some reason, my non-cycling co-workers laugh when I show them threads like this.
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Old 11-22-07, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Jet Travis View Post
For some reason, my non-cycling co-workers laugh when I show them threads like this.
So do my bike shop co-workers.
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Old 11-22-07, 10:22 AM
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Well, maybe mine was gooier (is that a word?).

I only use Campy chains and the performance with the factory coating (the one time I did it) was miserable. Shifting was slow and sticky as one might expect given the viscosity of that "lube." Cleaned and ........perfection.
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Old 11-22-07, 11:42 AM
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I use em out of the box/bag. Wipe off the excess first.
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Old 11-22-07, 01:57 PM
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Shimano USA is in Irvine, CA. I called them a few years back and that lube they use should not be tampered with some kind of solvent to remove it.

So after a hundred miles or so, start lubing. Also, I don't want to do a marathon thing with the chain to see how long it will last till it stretches beyond reason. I routinely change the chain. I don't ride in the rain and in So Calif it doesn't really get humid like Florida. The only humidity I get is from living and riding near the ocean.
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Old 11-22-07, 02:28 PM
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Whatever its lubricating virtues, new chain factory protectant seems to attracts grit and turns to gunk faster than any "aftermarket" lube I use. I generally wipe off the extra when installing the chain, get some mileage out of it, then clean the chain and go to ProLink, Pedro's, whatever I can find under the workbench clutter.

Last edited by CrossChain; 11-22-07 at 02:43 PM.
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