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Immersive waxing / it should be more popular

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Immersive waxing / it should be more popular

Old 08-22-22, 10:11 PM
  #51  
seypat
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Since we're talking about it, I might as well get it off my chest. I have a really good ultrasonic cleaner..................that never gets used. Just too much fuss and effort to fire it up on a regular basis. Maybe if I hoard up dirty things for a once a month type massive cleaning, but otherwise, not worth it.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:12 PM
  #52  
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Originally Posted by yaw View Post
Provided you care to maintain a reasonably efficient drivetrain, you will spend more time on cleaning it alone than a hot waxer spends waxing and swapping chains.
I can clean a chain in about a minute using one of those chain cleaning gizmos filled with Simple Green. It's one of the quickest steps of a general bike washing.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
Since we're talking about it, I might as well get it off my chest. I have a really good ultrasonic cleaner..................that never gets used. Just too much fuss and effort to fire it up on a regular basis. Maybe if I hoard up dirty things for a once a month type massive cleaning, but otherwise, not worth it.
They can be really useful for getting stuck parts unfrozen. But I guess stuck stems and seatposts might require an ultrasonic swimming pool.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:14 PM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by tomato coupe View Post
I can clean a chain in about a minute using one of those chain cleaning gizmos filled with Simple Green. It's one of the quickest steps of a general bike washing.
I take it you never managed to spray yourself with one?
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Old 08-22-22, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
I take it you never managed to spray yourself with one?
The chain goes into one end of the gizmo, and out the other end. All the brushes and fluid are inside the gizmo. There's no spraying going on.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:26 PM
  #56  
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
Exactly. The chain doesn't get dirty. I guess it can't hurt to run it through a rag or paper towel, but I've never seen any dirt or residue come off, so I don't bother. The wax eventually gets kind of grey, so I just dump it into the trash and stick a new block in.
Well, if the wax is changing colors it's getting contaminated with foreign materials with each redipping. Maybe you should add cleaning the chain before redipping, or not. Each person has a method that works for them.
I don't wax my bicycle chains because waxing is not recommended for the chains on my forklift. I did put some ceramic bearings in the chain rollers/pulleys. Didn't notice any difference in the performance of the lift going up/down.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by tomato coupe View Post
The chain goes into one end of the gizmo, and out the other end. All the brushes and fluid are inside the gizmo. There's no spraying going on.
I've done it many times. Maybe I cranked the chain through too fast.



Last edited by Polaris OBark; 08-22-22 at 10:31 PM.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:28 PM
  #58  
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Originally Posted by yaw View Post
The point is your drivetrain parts wouldn't get trashed as quickly on hot wax. Your friction losses would be reduced throughout your riding. So you have 40 years of accelerated part trashing and living with a less efficient drivetrain but that is not a reason to avoid an improvement if it is practical for you. Even with a money no object replace what come approach, the task to source and fit new parts, or trip to the bike shop, eats into time.
I don't believe you.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:29 PM
  #59  
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
Well, if the wax is changing colors it's getting contaminated with foreign materials with each redipping. Maybe you should add cleaning the chain before redipping, or not. Each person has a method that works for them.
I don't wax my bicycle chains because waxing is not recommended for the chains on my forklift. I did put some ceramic bearings in the chain rollers/pulleys. Didn't notice any difference in the performance of the lift going up/down.
That's right. The wax essentially cleans the chain in the same way any nonpolar organic solvent would when it is in the liquid phase.

I didn't even know fork-lifts had chains, so I cannot comment further.

For the record, I don't wax my chainsaws.
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Old 08-22-22, 10:30 PM
  #60  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
I don't believe you.
Test the hypothesis. You don't have to take anyone's word for it.
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Old 08-22-22, 11:17 PM
  #61  
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Originally Posted by tomato coupe View Post
I can clean a chain in about a minute using one of those chain cleaning gizmos filled with Simple Green. It's one of the quickest steps of a general bike washing.
I have one of those and they are only good for a superficial clean, a lot of grit gets carried and stuck inside.

Clean a chain that way and then soak it in a tub white white spirit and give it a good shake and marvel at what flushes out from inside your chain where it counts.
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Old 08-22-22, 11:35 PM
  #62  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
I don't believe you.
Two ways about it if you are open minded.

a) logic:
Your method of wiping your chains with a rag does nothing for what's going on inside the rollers, where all the wear happens. Drivetrain parts wear mainly due to chain elongation and that is caused by precisely that internal wear. Wax on wax is lower friction than metal grinding on metal with the helping of a gritty lubricant-contamination paste which you never flushed out with your method.

b) research:
Plenty of independent bench and real world testing to be found via Google to attest to the increase in drivetrain lifetime and the measured reduction in friction using hot wax, including the maintenance of that low friction for longer, with and without added contamination.
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Old 08-23-22, 06:55 AM
  #63  
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark View Post
Test the hypothesis. You don't have to take anyone's word for it.
Originally Posted by yaw View Post
Two ways about it if you are open minded.

a) logic:
Your method of wiping your chains with a rag does nothing for what's going on inside the rollers, where all the wear happens. Drivetrain parts wear mainly due to chain elongation and that is caused by precisely that internal wear. Wax on wax is lower friction than metal grinding on metal with the helping of a gritty lubricant-contamination paste which you never flushed out with your method.

b) research:
Plenty of independent bench and real world testing to be found via Google to attest to the increase in drivetrain lifetime and the measured reduction in friction using hot wax, including the maintenance of that low friction for longer, with and without added contamination.
If you guys want to wax your chains that's fine. I'm sure it's a viable method of maintenance. Friends have tried it and some have stuck with it and some did not.

I'm someone who might neglect things until the morning of the ride, then I throw a little Pro Link on there while I'm still half asleep. Set aside time to take chains off and wax them? Maybe have a second one ready to go? Not gonna happen. Not my personality.

Longevity of the parts? I run stuff waaayy past the time when others buy new. My main bike has over 50K miles since I bought it used. I put a new crankset, chain, and cassette on it then. The rings were pretty worn at some point and my LBS guy gave me a set of Record rings. These were on there until last year when the crankarm cracked and I found a used crankset with rings. I've replaced the cassette 3 times in 50K miles and I think 4 chains. I put a new chain (the 4th one) on last year when I changed the crankset, so that chain has about 7000 miles on it and the cassette well over 10K.

Would those parts have lasted longer if I waxed? I'll never know. As you can see, my expenses for drivetrain replacement stuff is pretty minimal. I'm at 200 pounds which is the lightest I've been since I started riding. I generally climb 300,000 feet or more each year so my bike has a bit of stress. I break wheels and other parts.

I've heard and read about the wax thing for many years. Earlier in this thread I linked a page with close to 50 threads on the subject from doing a quick search with the words "chain wax" in titles. It's not for everyone.
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Old 08-23-22, 07:05 AM
  #64  
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
Well, if the wax is changing colors it's getting contaminated with foreign materials with each redipping. Maybe you should add cleaning the chain before redipping, or not. Each person has a method that works for them.
Sure, but you're making judgements based on incorrect assumptions. You're doing small batches of wax - I start out each year with a fresh half pound of MSW - and a waxed chain doesn't attract nearly the same road grit and grime that wet lubes will, so there's much less accumulation than you're assuming. If you're really persnickety, MSW has "race" chain recommendations to save the other watt.
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Old 08-23-22, 07:14 AM
  #65  
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3 cassettes in 50,000 miles would $1200 and 3-5 years of riding.

One of the cogs on a SRAM 1190 is starting to skip under load but it has around 35,000 miles and has suffered to many big-big abuses. I think the key is not letting your chains wear out. When I was lazy and used liquid lubes, my chains would last 2-2,500 miles. I've gotten 10,000 miles on a waxed chain in ideal conditions. 12 speed chains are about $100. So, there is some real money to be saved with the 5 minutes it takes to wax my chain every 500-600 miles. Lets say 20 times per year or around 2 hours. Whats that about $450 per hour?
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Old 08-23-22, 07:23 AM
  #66  
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
Sure, but you're making judgements based on incorrect assumptions. You're doing small batches of wax - I start out each year with a fresh half pound of MSW - and a waxed chain doesn't attract nearly the same road grit and grime that wet lubes will, so there's much less accumulation than you're assuming. If you're really persnickety, MSW has "race" chain recommendations to save the other watt.
That, and you can wash it in hot / boiling water after a few dips. Wax will melt off the chain with the crappy stuff.
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Old 08-23-22, 07:42 AM
  #67  
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Originally Posted by WhyFi View Post
Sure, but you're making judgements based on incorrect assumptions. You're doing small batches of wax - I start out each year with a fresh half pound of MSW - and a waxed chain doesn't attract nearly the same road grit and grime that wet lubes will, so there's much less accumulation than you're assuming. If you're really persnickety, MSW has "race" chain recommendations to save the other watt.

But there is contamination after the first dipping if you don't clean the chain before redipping and strain your wax after each dipping. That's not really important either way, but it does run counter to some of the pro waxing discussion in thread. The OP and others started with how easy and less time consuming it is. But as the thread goes along there seem to be more of, "Well yeah, you have to do that as well and you also have to do that also." To be fair, you countered some of their points in your earlier posts.


I think the real reason is because some individuals(such as myself) think of lubrication as more of a pre ride ritual and less of a monthly/longer maintenance chore similar to servicing headsets. I have multible bikes in each speed from 5-9 speeds. The 5-8s all take the same chains. I have at least one spare each of the 5-8 and 9 chains sitting on the wall. I'd never think of breaking them out of their package until they go on a bike. When they do, another will be ordered to take their place on the wall. That's just me.


The strange thing is that all of my bikes stay at my place of business, which has a shop with tools and a parts washer. Rarely though, does a chain come off a bike for cleaning. If it does, it just gets soaked in some concoction of brake cleaner/degreaser. Usually in something like a bowl. The parts washer never gets used for bike chains. Then the chain is dried out and reinstalled on bike before lubrication. Weird.
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Old 08-23-22, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by eduskator View Post
That, and you can wash it in hot / boiling water after a few dips. Wax will melt off the chain with the crappy stuff.
This is countering the reasons the pro waxers are stating in the thread about how easy and less time consuming it is. There's one more step you have to add to the process. WhyFi seems to be the only one stating that extra work in involved at the beginning of the process.
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Old 08-23-22, 07:58 AM
  #69  
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Originally Posted by GhostRider62 View Post
3 cassettes in 50,000 miles would $1200 and 3-5 years of riding.
Huh? Your cassettes cost $400 each?
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Old 08-23-22, 08:08 AM
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What do you do when on a trip away from home and need to re-wax? If you use some other lube, can you just go back to waxing after, or do you need to clean everything off the chain?
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Old 08-23-22, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat View Post
But there is contamination after the first dipping if you don't clean the chain before redipping and strain your wax after each dipping. That's not really important either way, but it does run counter to some of the pro waxing discussion in thread. The OP and others started with how easy and less time consuming it is. But as the thread goes along there seem to be more of, "Well yeah, you have to do that as well and you also have to do that also." To be fair, you countered some of their points in your earlier posts.


I think the real reason is because some individuals(such as myself) think of lubrication as more of a pre ride ritual and less of a monthly/longer maintenance chore similar to servicing headsets. I have multible bikes in each speed from 5-9 speeds. The 5-8s all take the same chains. I have at least one spare each of the 5-8 and 9 chains sitting on the wall. I'd never think of breaking them out of their package until they go on a bike. When they do, another will be ordered to take their place on the wall. That's just me.


The strange thing is that all of my bikes stay at my place of business, which has a shop with tools and a parts washer. Rarely though, does a chain come off a bike for cleaning. If it does, it just gets soaked in some concoction of brake cleaner/degreaser. Usually in something like a bowl. The parts washer never gets used for bike chains. Then the chain is dried out and reinstalled on bike before lubrication. Weird.
I can't really speak to plopping a factory greased chain in to a new pot of wax - I've always taken the time to strip the chains per MSW's instructions.

I also really don't care to evangelize waxing - though I'm happy to answer questions and correct misconceptions - because everybody has a different workflow that they're comfortable with. I like waxing because, in my riding environment, it takes me waaaaay too much work to keep my chain/drivetrain from getting grimy. While my preferred method takes a bit of upfront elbow grease, after that it's probably less than 5 minutes of hands-on time, per month, for the next 10k miles. No wiping down, no re-application, no cassette flossing, no scaping gunk off of jockey wheels, etc. Evidently, some people don't need to do this stuff very much or they don't mind doing it - cool, you do you, but don't try to nit-pick, based upon incorrect assumptions, what is very clearly a net benefit for me.

To touch on another needlessly controversial subject, waxing is much like tubeless, to me - I'll happily front-load a little work if it makes my life easier down the line. For those that are fortunate enough to not experience frequent flats or those that don't mind addressing them roadside - cool, you do you, but don't try to nit-pick, based upon incorrect assumptions, what is very clearly a net benefit for me.
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Old 08-23-22, 08:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Kapusta View Post
What do you do when on a trip away from home and need to re-wax? If you use some other lube, can you just go back to waxing after, or do you need to clean everything off the chain?
How much are you riding on these trips? I rotate two chains, so that I only have to re-wax once a month or so, and I regularly take trips with my bike. I make sure that both chains are freshly re-waxed before leaving. I usually log 500+ miles on these trips and I often don't even make it to my second chain.
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Old 08-23-22, 08:34 AM
  #73  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
Huh? Your cassettes cost $400 each?
Are you living in a dumpster? Or do you just find your bikes there.

Yes. If you can source me a 12 speed 10-33 1290, I would be very grateful.....they are being scalped for $750 due to supply chain issues.
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Old 08-23-22, 08:37 AM
  #74  
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I typically rotate two chains as well, and have not found the process to be time consuming. Even initial chain cleaning is time efficient because it does not require a concentrated amount of time - put chain in Gatoraid bottle with mineral spirits, shake, soak, shake, soak, move to a clean bottle and repeat. I typically do that while doing other things around the house.

I sometimes use Squirt between immersions.

I don't have to wash greasy rags used to wipe the chain after other lubes, and don't have to pre-treat stained clothes.

All-in-all, it's about the same time spend either way you go.
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Old 08-23-22, 08:41 AM
  #75  
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Don't non-wax chain lubricating folks also do the initial chain cleaning? That stuff Shimano uses to pack the chain is incredibly adhesive. I wouldn't want that as my initial lube, regardless of what I use.
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