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White Lightning Clean Ride -- How to apply

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White Lightning Clean Ride -- How to apply

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Old 02-12-19, 09:49 AM
  #51  
frogman
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
I've been using it for 20+ years in every imaginable condition. It holds up just fine in my experience. And it lasts a lot longer than 50 miles. I can go 600 to 700 miles between applications without issue. And, as I stated above, I get the same mileage out of a chain as is commonly reported. Yes, the lubricant needs to be applied again after rain but oil based lubricants should be applied after rain as well. Oil and water will emulsify and the water will settle out on the chain. Water in contact with metal facilitates rust.

As for it being available at Walmart, so? Lots of products are available at Walmart. Are you saying that they are all inferior to the ones you can purchase elsewhere? Is that Tide you buy at Walmart not as good as the Tide you buy at Krogers?



You do realize that all of the products you are suggesting are "wax with a carrier", don't you? Oil based lubricants are just oil with a carrier. There are a few products out there that don't have a carrier...like Chain L, Phil's Tenacious Oil, etc...but those are even worse to deal with than other oil based lubricants. I used Phil's for a long time and really didn't like dealing with the mess.

As to the magic "Teflon", Teflon in a lubricant is just particles of Teflon in that dreaded "carrier". It's not like you are going to get a shell of Teflon on your chain when you apply it. It's pretty much like a wax in that respect.



Chains on bicycles don't generate enough heat to "liquify" wax during pedaling. The wax can be pushed out of the way as it is plastic but it doesn't "liquify". That's one of the (slight) failings of wax. It doesn't flow back into the gaps when the pedaling pressure is removed like oils do. But that means that it doesn't pump grit back into the gaps either. Yes, the wax has to be liquified to apply it but that can be done with either heat (hot wax) or a solvent. Once the heat or solvent is removed, the wax is a solid again and, as a solid, it won't form an emulsion because it isn't that fluid. It keeps the grit out of the chain. I've solvent washed both oiled chains and waxed chains and there is grit present with the oiled chain but not in the waxed chain.

As to the longevity, that is my point. Both methods provide the same mileage for the reasons I've given above but wax requires less work to keep it clean. There is simply not need to "wipe the exterior of the chain". Even with oil, wipe the exterior of the chain is questionable. All wiping does is force the surface grim (along with microscopic grit particles) into the chain. It would be far better to flood the chain with fresh oil, get it to run through and then wipe it.

Or just use something that doesn't attract and hold grit in the first place.
Wiping the exterior of the chain dry is beneficial in that it minimizes more collecting of dirt. You can't shove the dirt particles down into the chain manually.
I have used just about all the chain lubes including wax which I don't classify as a lube. On both my mountain bikes and road bikes waxed chains attract dirt too. Strange that you state that wax lube does not attract dirt. Maybe our California dirt is magnetic and is attracted to the chain
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Old 02-12-19, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
No, it didn't. Take some wax, put it in a jar of a water and come back 6 months later. Remove the wax, dry it and weigh it. You'll find that there is no decrease in weight. Or take a brick of wax and put it under running water. Waste a whole reservoir of water on it and you'll still find the same weight as you started out. Wax is water insoluble. That's why it is used to seal stuff...from water infiltration.

What people think is wax "washing off" is what I've posted above in more then one post. The wax gets shoved off the pressure points but can't really flow back. Some metal gets exposed and the surface can rust which leads to a squeak. Is that bad? Maybe but oil is doing the same because the water sits on the metal...since the oil separates from the water and the water is on the bottom. The water is doing the same thing it does with the wax but the "squeak" is being masked by the oil since it flows. The same damage is being done which can easily be seen by the fact that it makes little difference what lubricant you use in terms of mileage.
No, the addition of water to a wax-lubed chain changes the lubricant characteristics. My experience was that a waxed chain in dry conditions was "good" (meaning didn't squeak) for about 300-400 miles. If the chain was ridden in rain the first week after waxing, squeaking would start in as little as 60-80 miles.
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Old 02-12-19, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
No, it didn't. Take some wax, put it in a jar of a water and come back 6 months later. Remove the wax, dry it and weigh it. You'll find that there is no decrease in weight. Or take a brick of wax and put it under running water. Waste a whole reservoir of water on it and you'll still find the same weight as you started out. Wax is water insoluble. That's why it is used to seal stuff...from water infiltration.

What people think is wax "washing off" is what I've posted above in more then one post. The wax gets shoved off the pressure points but can't really flow back. Some metal gets exposed and the surface can rust which leads to a squeak. Is that bad? Maybe but oil is doing the same because the water sits on the metal...since the oil separates from the water and the water is on the bottom. The water is doing the same thing it does with the wax but the "squeak" is being masked by the oil since it flows. The same damage is being done which can easily be seen by the fact that it makes little difference what lubricant you use in terms of mileage.
To say the noise is a non factor and not an indication of lube loss is not what I experience. At the same time, the chain gitters coming of the bottom der wheel and I've even had to to adjust my B screw to increase the distance to get consistent shifts to finish the ride. The lubrication is GONE and the noise is that indication. In that situation the shifting and clicking got better riding through the next puddle and getting it wet again. This is not some worn out drivetrain. This is on my MTB with less than 300 miles on new chain and rings. I never had that problem with the lubes I use now, I can even stop and rinse off dirt and mud mid ride and finish with no issues. It happened on my gravel bike too with a mix of components age. Stick with what you want but don't don't assume others are imagining things.

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Old 02-12-19, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by frogman View Post
Wiping the exterior of the chain dry is beneficial in that it minimizes more collecting of dirt. You can't shove the dirt particles down into the chain manually.
Think about what an oil is. The "excess" on the exterior is just oil that has flowed from the inside of the chain to the outside. Oil is a fluid and, as such, it flows under the influence of gravity. Remove the "excess" on the outside and more oil will just flow from the inside to the outside, necessitating more wiping.

As to not being able to shove dirt into the chain manually, what prevents it? The gaps between the plates and the roller bearing are huge compared to the size of the particles that can collect on the outside. Yes, the particles that are trapped in the oil are of a wide distribution of sizes from nearly pebbles to nanoscale. All the grit has to be is smaller than the gaps in the chain and in it goes. For a more visual scale, try wiping something away from an open crack sometime. Anything big enough to go down the crack has as much likelihood of going down the crack as it does being picked up by whatever is doing the wiping.

Originally Posted by frogman View Post
I have used just about all the chain lubes including wax which I don't classify as a lube. On both my mountain bikes and road bikes waxed chains attract dirt too. Strange that you state that wax lube does not attract dirt. Maybe our California dirt is magnetic and is attracted to the chain
Do you not classify the factory "lube" as a lubricant? It's not an oil. It's a soft wax. The only difference between a hard wax, soft wax and an oil is molecular weight. They are almost a homologous series in that respect. The carrier used for many chain lubricants has a much smaller molecular weight but it is related to the oil, soft wax and wax.

I'll agree that you can get some dust on a waxed chain but the difference is that it really is just surface dust. With an oil based lubricant, you are getting dirt into the lubricant because it can flow. Waxes don't flow in that manner. They can experience plastic flow but that is very different and far slower than the kind of flow that oil experiences. Think of it this (slightly exaggerated) way: as the chain leaves the cassette and is pulled towards the chainring, the oil is at the bottom of the chain. The chain goes around the chainwheel and the oil on the bottom edge of the chain is now on top. The oil...along with any grit small enough to get past the gaps...flows into the chain. It hits the jockey pulleys and is swapped back up to the top. This happens dozens of times per minute for miles and miles. Grit is pumped into the inside of the chain.

Contrast that with wax lubricants. There is no flow when the chain in between the cassette and chainwheels. The wax doesn't flow so there isn't any pumping of the grit into the internals of the chain. There's a bit of plastic flow when the chain goes around the chainwheel and jockey pulleys but there flow there with oil also. The oil can flow back and wax can't, so wax is results in a bit noisier chain. But, given that both lubricants give the same result in terms of longevity, there isn't an advantage with respect to lubrication of one over the other.
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Old 02-12-19, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by u235 View Post
Stick with what you want but don't don't assume others are imagining things.
If you think that the wax is "washing off", you are imaging things. Chemistry says that wax can't be washed off with water. The sound is other things happening...see above...but it is not wax removal.
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Old 02-12-19, 04:36 PM
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
If you think that the wax is "washing off", you are imaging things. Chemistry says that wax can't be washed off with water. The sound is other things happening...see above...but it is not wax removal.
It is off, washed, magical, nuclear yield, or someone stripped it off when I walked away from my bike.. in any case the lubricant is gone. As noted by the chain is clicking and grinding, skipping gears and having a hard time. A lubricated chain does not do that, even one lubricated with water from a puddle won't do that. Are you implying you can wax a chain one time in its entire life and it stays well lubricated from that point on? At no point does something cause it to wear off any faster or slower?

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Old 02-12-19, 04:46 PM
  #57  
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https://www.ilovebicycling.com/bike-...n-differences/

https://www.ems.com/f/ea-how-to-choo...lubricant.html

https://www.cyclingweekly.com/news/l...you-use-289671

Hmmm, according to those websites wax does not hold up to rain.
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Old 02-12-19, 05:29 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Think about what an oil is. The "excess" on the exterior is just oil that has flowed from the inside of the chain to the outside. Oil is a fluid and, as such, it flows under the influence of gravity. Remove the "excess" on the outside and more oil will just flow from the inside to the outside, necessitating more wiping.

As to not being able to shove dirt into the chain manually, what prevents it? The gaps between the plates and the roller bearing are huge compared to the size of the particles that can collect on the outside. Yes, the particles that are trapped in the oil are of a wide distribution of sizes from nearly pebbles to nanoscale. All the grit has to be is smaller than the gaps in the chain and in it goes. For a more visual scale, try wiping something away from an open crack sometime. Anything big enough to go down the crack has as much likelihood of going down the crack as it does being picked up by whatever is doing the wiping.



Do you not classify the factory "lube" as a lubricant? It's not an oil. It's a soft wax. The only difference between a hard wax, soft wax and an oil is molecular weight. They are almost a homologous series in that respect. The carrier used for many chain lubricants has a much smaller molecular weight but it is related to the oil, soft wax and wax.

I'll agree that you can get some dust on a waxed chain but the difference is that it really is just surface dust. With an oil based lubricant, you are getting dirt into the lubricant because it can flow. Waxes don't flow in that manner. They can experience plastic flow but that is very different and far slower than the kind of flow that oil experiences. Think of it this (slightly exaggerated) way: as the chain leaves the cassette and is pulled towards the chainring, the oil is at the bottom of the chain. The chain goes around the chainwheel and the oil on the bottom edge of the chain is now on top. The oil...along with any grit small enough to get past the gaps...flows into the chain. It hits the jockey pulleys and is swapped back up to the top. This happens dozens of times per minute for miles and miles. Grit is pumped into the inside of the chain.

Contrast that with wax lubricants. There is no flow when the chain in between the cassette and chainwheels. The wax doesn't flow so there isn't any pumping of the grit into the internals of the chain. There's a bit of plastic flow when the chain goes around the chainwheel and jockey pulleys but there flow there with oil also. The oil can flow back and wax can't, so wax is results in a bit noisier chain. But, given that both lubricants give the same result in terms of longevity, there isn't an advantage with respect to lubrication of one over the other.

OK, we agree that there isn't an advantage with respect to one or the other as far as life of the chain. I have had different results than you with wax used as a chain lubricant. I will go with what has worked best for me. Comparing our anecdotal experience has been interesting. Thanks for sharing with me. It is raining cats and dogs here in Northern CA. Putting on rain gear and heading out for a ride.
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Old 02-13-19, 08:47 AM
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Originally Posted by u235 View Post
It is off, washed, magical, nuclear yield, or someone stripped it off when I walked away from my bike.. in any case the lubricant is gone.
You are missing my point. It is on "off". One of the things that many people don't like about wax based lubricants is that they cause build up of wax on the jockey wheel. That's because the excess is caught on the wheel where it evaporates and builds up over time. If you've every tried to remove it, it doesn't "wash" off. It has to be mechanically removed or removed with solvent...not Simple Green. The wax in the chain is just as tenacious. Yes, as I've said many times in this thread alone, the wax gets shoved out spaces and it can't move back. But an oil flows away from those points too.

Originally Posted by u235 View Post
As noted by the chain is clicking and grinding, skipping gears and having a hard time. A lubricated chain does not do that, even one lubricated with water from a puddle won't do that.
My chains aren't prone to "clicking, grinding, skipping gears and having a hard time". That kind of behavior probably isn't related to the chain in the first place. Skipping gears, clicking and rough shifts are related to derailer problems. I've used this stuff in snow, rain, dirt roads in rain, on tow paths and rail trails, off road in wet conditions, etc in 48 of the 50 states without issues. My chains don't grind, click, skip gears or have difficulty shifting.

Originally Posted by u235 View Post
Are you implying you can wax a chain one time in its entire life and it stays well lubricated from that point on? At no point does something cause it to wear off any faster or slower?
Where did I imply that? The wax sloughs off over time and needs to be replaced. In my experience, it doesn't need to be replaced nearly as often as most...including the manufacturer...thinks. I did a 1500 mile tour from Toledo, OH, up and over Lake Erie, across New York, looped down to Delaware, across Maryland and up to Pittsburgh. I carried, and used, wax lubricant for the whole trip. I applied it 3 times due to rain. I got 500 to 600 miles between applications when it didn't rain.

I get similar results at home. My drivetrain runs smooth and relatively quiet, although a bit louder than oil based lubricants. As I said above, it doesn't grind, skip gears, and the shifts are crisp and precise.
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Old 02-14-19, 03:40 PM
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I've had good luck with WL CR, even in wet conditions. I use the following as my guide: if the bike got dirty enough to require a wash, then the chain also requires fresh WL CR.

My 'babied, dry weather' bikes need a wash periodically, or course. If I don't get chain squeak first (rare, but not never), they also get fresh WL CR along with the wash.

I've had the 'clog problem', most of the time when it's cold. Here's what I do: turn the bottle tip-up and squeeze. Air will blow out the clog. Continue lubing, and repeat when it clogs again.
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Old 02-14-19, 09:49 PM
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25 miles today, lots of big puddles, WL held up well. I think I applied more to the chain this time, using the officially approved method, which is to spray the living c__p out of it over the cog while back-pedaling vigorously. Last time I applied WL more conservatively while the chain was off the bike.
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