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is cleaning your chain overrated?

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is cleaning your chain overrated?

Old 12-12-11, 09:49 PM
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rapnjoe
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is cleaning your chain overrated?

saw this bike today hiking-In whoever's defense,it was raining so hopefully it's a rain bike (lol)
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Old 12-12-11, 09:51 PM
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Fork's bent.

Lord, I hope that's only someone's rain bike. I don't clean my chain much, but it's cleaner than that!
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."
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Old 12-12-11, 10:13 PM
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No. It's not.

/thread
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Old 12-12-11, 10:15 PM
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Looks like it is in about the same condition as my first road bike that I got for free and fixed up a bit before it got stolen, other than the bent fork that is. I did at least keep my chain cleaner than that though. It may not look the greatest, but at least the person is riding.
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Old 12-12-11, 11:27 PM
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I've never cleaned my chain yet

Meh-
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Old 12-12-11, 11:28 PM
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Never have to worry about rust.
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Old 12-12-11, 11:30 PM
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clean chain gives you extra 5 mph
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Old 12-12-11, 11:41 PM
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Originally Posted by DGlenday View Post
I've never cleaned my chain yet

Meh-
That's not necessarily a recommendation...FWIW, though, I used to be one of those guys in the '70s who took the chain off, scrubbed it with a toothbrush and kerosene, then soaked it in melted paraffin. Took all day Saturday and lasted until about Wednesday. Now I hose it down with ProLink about every 150-200 miles and never think about it.
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Old 12-13-11, 12:08 AM
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I only cleaned my chain every few months (1200 miles or so) and replaced cassette+chain bi-annually. Now however with prices getting higher (and me generally being better with money), I clean the chain max every 3 weeks (300 miles). The quieter drivetrain is so beautiful to listen to on a quiet road.
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Old 12-13-11, 12:14 AM
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I just give the chain fresh lube, run it through a scrubber and then wipe down the excess lube.
It comes out surprisingly clean after that.
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Old 12-13-11, 12:30 AM
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Obsessive/excessive cleaning is not good.

Cleaning my chain is a five minute job, thanks to the late Sheldon Brown.

Remove KMC links, drop chain in old wide-mouth soda bottle, add a little recycled mineral spirits, shake vigorously, fish chain out, hang chain to dry , re-install chain and lube.
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Old 12-13-11, 04:01 AM
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Is cleaning your chain overrated?

No.
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Old 12-13-11, 05:14 AM
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No

Wet rag and lube, after every ride, ensures a very clean chain and happy drive train.
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Old 12-13-11, 06:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Doohickie View Post
Fork's bent.

Lord, I hope that's only someone's rain bike. I don't clean my chain much, but it's cleaner than that!
No, it's a pinarello
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Old 12-13-11, 06:59 AM
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...furthermore, is lubing your chain overrated?

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Old 12-13-11, 07:13 AM
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Is there any evidence that cleaned chains will last longer than just simple lubed chains?
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Old 12-13-11, 07:59 AM
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Its probably a little overrated here on BF. My chain will get cleaned 2-3 times over its life. Its the stretch that really ends their life and that has nothing or very little to do with how clean you keep them. Of course, the examples posted here are pretty extreme. I wouldnt let mine get anywhere close to that.
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Old 12-13-11, 07:59 AM
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I only lube and wipe every ≈300 miles. I get the same chain life as my friends that are anal about clean chains.
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Old 12-13-11, 08:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Trucker Dan View Post
I only lube and wipe every ≈300 miles. I get the same chain life as my friends that are anal about clean chains.
Whatever you do, don't Google those last four words...
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Old 12-13-11, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Trucker Dan View Post
I only lube and wipe every ≈300 miles. I get the same chain life as my friends that are anal about clean chains.
In my book, cleaning every 300 miles is pretty anal.

But here's a question: Does it make more of a difference for 9-10-11 speed systems, than for 6-7-8 speed? I think all this business about maintenance comes from the high number of cogs in roughly the same amount of space. Load bearing materials are thinner and contact areas are smaller, leading to faster wear. The highest number of speeds I have on any freewheel/cassette is 7 and I think I've only changed a chain for wear once, and it was about 25 years old.
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Originally Posted by bragi "However, it's never a good idea to overgeneralize."

Last edited by Doohickie; 12-13-11 at 08:25 AM.
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Old 12-13-11, 09:45 AM
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I don't think frequent cleaning makes narrow chains (9-10-11) last any longer by comparison. I've tried very frequent cleaning as well as larger ignoring cleaning and just apply dry lube like Finish Line when the chain starts making noise - absolutely no difference in chain life
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Old 12-13-11, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by giantcfr1 View Post
...furthermore, is lubing your chain overrated?

thats cool, its like a forensic view on what gears and chainrings he is using, surprisingly nearly all of them. I guess the derailleur still works.
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Old 12-13-11, 10:12 AM
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Once a year, unless it's on a MTB.
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Old 12-13-11, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by pallen View Post
Its probably a little overrated here on BF. My chain will get cleaned 2-3 times over its life. Its the stretch that really ends their life and that has nothing or very little to do with how clean you keep them. Of course, the examples posted here are pretty extreme. I wouldnt let mine get anywhere close to that.
And how does the chain "stretches"? It doesn't actually stretch. What happens is the pin/hinge starts wearing out with contaminants (which acts like a sand paper), and as you have start having enough wear, individual links give more wiggle room which gives perception that the chain stretched. Of course, cleaning chain will help you with less wear as you remove the dirt/dust... Just gotta make it reasonable. I do it every 300-500 miles. I live in rather dusty region of S. California and it makes difference in chain life up to 500-1000 miles depending on how frequently I do it.
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Old 12-13-11, 10:53 AM
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Common sense..Dirt and grit wearing on chain rings.....
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