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Lubricate new chain?

Old 06-01-20, 08:02 AM
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Robert A
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Lubricate new chain?

When installing a new Shimano chain (Dura-Ace), should the chain be cleaned and lubricated before first use?
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Old 06-01-20, 08:13 AM
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WhyFi
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No.
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Old 06-01-20, 08:15 AM
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Robert A
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When cleaning the jockey wheels in the RD, is there a particular type of lubricant to use? Also, are the wheels directional?

Last edited by Robert A; 06-01-20 at 08:19 AM.
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Old 06-01-20, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
When installing a new Shimano chain (Dura-Ace), should the chain be cleaned and lubricated before first use?
Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
No.
I always spray Clean Streak on a shop rag, and remove the goo from the outer surfaces. That stuff attracts dirt.
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Old 06-01-20, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
When cleaning the jockey wheels in the RD, is there a particular type of lubricant to use? Also, are the wheels directional?
They come with grease from the factory. You need to take them apart to lubricate them. Cleaning the outside can be done with a rag. There usually is a top/guide pulley and a bottom/tension pulley. Ive never seen directional pulleys, but take a closer look before taking it apart.
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Old 06-01-20, 08:50 AM
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I apply Chain-L to brand-new chains before I use them because they never arrive stinky enough.
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Old 06-01-20, 08:53 AM
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Robert A
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
They come with grease from the factory. You need to take them apart to lubricate them. Cleaning the outside can be done with a rag. There usually is a top/guide pulley and a bottom/tension pulley. Ive never seen directional pulleys, but take a closer look before taking it apart.
Yes, but what about replacing the lubricant after taking the wheels apart?
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Old 06-01-20, 08:55 AM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
I apply Chain-L to brand-new chains before I use them because they never arrive stinky enough.
That crap will definitely make them stink. I ****ing hate that chain lube, but it's probably good for wet conditions. No need for it in AZ.
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Old 06-01-20, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
When installing a new Shimano chain (Dura-Ace), should the chain be cleaned and lubricated before first use?
I would clean it first using a degreaser. Companies put a factory lubricant on the chain, and I don't believe it's a good idea to mix 2 different products.

I clean mine with fuel & WD-40. Works like a charm.
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Old 06-01-20, 09:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
Yes, but what about replacing the lubricant after taking the wheels apart?
You should use grease. It stays put, unlike oil.

Last edited by Racing Dan; 06-01-20 at 09:11 AM.
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Old 06-01-20, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
Ive never seen directional pulleys, but take a closer look before taking it apart.
I have jockey wheels that have directional arrows on my bike.
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Old 06-01-20, 10:05 AM
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I have found the neccessity of cleaning a new chain before installing, then lubing. The stuff coating many chains from the factory is some form of rust inhibitor, like they use on cast iron machinery so it doesn't rust while in a warehouse someplace. I think it's called cryoline (?). It doesn't have desireable properties as lubricant. It's very sticky and attracts everything in dry or wet weather. I solvent bath new chains now.
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Old 06-01-20, 10:19 AM
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Originally Posted by prairiepedaler View Post
I have found the neccessity of cleaning a new chain before installing, then lubing. The stuff coating many chains from the factory is some form of rust inhibitor, like they use on cast iron machinery so it doesn't rust while in a warehouse someplace. I think it's called cryoline (?). It doesn't have desireable properties as lubricant. It's very sticky and attracts everything in dry or wet weather. I solvent bath new chains now.
The bike myth the WONT die. It never fails :-)

Its NOT cosmoline. Bike chains are ready to use out of box. You think Giant or your LBS washes 50 mio chains a year in solvent?
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Old 06-01-20, 12:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
The bike myth the WONT die. It never fails :-)

Its NOT cosmoline. Bike chains are ready to use out of box. You think Giant or your LBS washes 50 mio chains a year in solvent?
Yep, nothing better than the factory lube. A few years ago we got that info directly from a mfg, KMC I think.
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Old 06-01-20, 12:33 PM
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Seeing as I use Squirt dry wax on my chains I completely degrease/clean a new chain then apply Squirt. If I was going to use a wet oil based lube I wouldn't bother but for Squirt you need to clean chain before initial application.
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Old 06-01-20, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
The bike myth the WONT die. It never fails :-)

Its NOT cosmoline. Bike chains are ready to use out of box. You think Giant or your LBS washes 50 mio chains a year in solvent?
Originally Posted by shelbyfv View Post
Yep, nothing better than the factory lube. A few years ago we got that info directly from a mfg, KMC I think.
Yes, but there's no need for all that goop on the outer surfaces. Wipe it off so it doesn't collect dust.
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Old 06-01-20, 01:21 PM
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
yes, but there's no need for all that goop on the outer surfaces. Wipe it off so it doesn't collect dust.
+1
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Old 06-01-20, 02:43 PM
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Originally Posted by noodle soup View Post
Yes, but there's no need for all that goop on the outer surfaces. Wipe it off so it doesn't collect dust.
This. When I put a new chain on, I just wipe down the outside and ride it. Then when it needs to be cleaned, I'll run it through the chain cleaner and use my regular lube.
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Old 06-01-20, 02:45 PM
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Welp, first time I heard it was lube so I wasn't even aware it was a myth. Just my experience with the few new chains I've put on. Gums up in my opinion. In any case, this guy is going to clean it off even if smells like a bottle of top shelf Clive Christian and has been drawn through the thighs of Miss Universe!
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Old 06-01-20, 04:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Racing Dan View Post
They come with grease from the factory. You need to take them apart to lubricate them. Cleaning the outside can be done with a rag. There usually is a top/guide pulley and a bottom/tension pulley. Ive never seen directional pulleys, but take a closer look before taking it apart.
I just swapped my Ultegra jockey wheels for some Dura Ace ones, and at least one of the jockey wheels is definitely directional. A close look at the teeth shows that they are different on one side of the tooth than the other. I put the wheel in backwards by mistake and the chain was skipping on it due to the tooth shape. Flipped it around the correct way and it worked fine. There's also a tiny little arrow showing which way it should go. I think the directional one was the top one, but I could be misremembering.
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Old 06-01-20, 08:36 PM
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Here's an interview with a Shimano guy. He explains it pretty well. https://bikerumor.com/2011/06/28/cha...-with-shimano/
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Old 06-02-20, 06:46 AM
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The typical factory lube is a product at least similar to cosmoline. Watch the video at the Campy chain factory. The chains go through a bath of heated lube with a low viscosity that turns into the sticky gunk as it cools. It's fine if you want a dirty drive train. I remove the stuff and apply my own wax based liquid lube from day one.

The new SRAM AXS chains come with a light oil on them, not the sticky stuff. I remove that too.
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Old 06-02-20, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Robert A View Post
When installing a new Shimano chain (Dura-Ace), should the chain be cleaned and lubricated before first use?
Yes.

The grease that they pack it with from the factory is a grime magnet. And based on what I've read from friction facts, I don't see how it could have less rotating resistance than oil, even if it was used in an environment where dust isn't an issue.


​​​​​
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Old 06-02-20, 10:53 AM
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BF: waxing chains is too much work
Also BF: strip that awesome factory lube off of your brand new chain for no good reason
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Old 06-02-20, 11:14 AM
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My new chain approach? Install. Do a couple of chain revolutions through a clean rag to get the surface cleaner and attract less dust. From there, lube with Tri-Flow or Finsh Line wet lube (drip bottle, not spray) as needed, (Tri-Flo for summer and good bike chains, wet lube for the others.)

Every once in a while I will take a too-disgusting chain off, clean it in solvent and re-lube. Probably half my chains don't get that until they have hit 1/16" stretch and get set aside to use when all those cogs are worn enough that a new chain won't run smoothly but the shifting, etc is still OK.

Simple routine, Doesn't take a lot of time. (Yea, dripping lube, two drops per pin is a little slow, but in the long run, worthy it.) Not a whole lot of solvent wasted or breathed. Chains (and teeth) last respectably long. (Now I don't use $50 chains. I run 9-speed SRAMS at around $12 each, 8-speed for less and Izume 1/8" at $22 (they last forever).

Ben
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