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Road salt

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Old 12-19-18, 12:30 PM
  #1  
roadsnakes
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Road salt

I try not to ride when the road salt is really obvious and heavy. Mostly because I don`t want the salt to get on my front suspension tubes. I just can`t see it not causing some damage when that tube is going up and down covered in salt.

Anyone else have concerns about riding in heavy Road Salt??

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Old 12-19-18, 12:57 PM
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Venn diagram time - draw a circle with the word "suspension" in it. Then draw another circle with the word "winter" in it. The circles should not touch or intersect.

Generally, yes, you need to clean salt residue off as soon as possible. But the best way to protect a suspension fork is not to expose it at all. A second bike, a second fork, anything is preferable.
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Old 12-19-18, 01:19 PM
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
... A second bike, a second fork, anything is preferable.
+1 If you read my posts you will see me talk of my winter/rain/city bikes a lot. I have two. One geared, one fix gear. I do not live in salt country now, but if I did, only those bikes would get ridden until the salt was washed away. (In salt country, fix gears have real advantages, one being the chain. Chains suffer big time in salt unless you have access to water and rinse, dry and re-lube them regularly. Messy work. But with a fix gear, you can ride utli a link freezes up. When it does, just slide the wheel forward a touch to get the proper clack back. Next link, do the same thing. (I drew the limit at two frozen links.)

Another trick - use marine boat trailer hub grease for bearings, seatposts and threads. Salt water won't touch the stuff.

Ben
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Old 12-19-18, 02:44 PM
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Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
Venn diagram time - draw a circle with the word "suspension" in it. Then draw another circle with the word "winter" in it. The circles should not touch or intersect.

Generally, yes, you need to clean salt residue off as soon as possible. But the best way to protect a suspension fork is not to expose it at all. A second bike, a second fork, anything is preferable.
Sorry but a suspension works quite well for winter. If you are worried about salt, get boots for the suspension to protect it. But when it comes to riding, snow is very much like riding off-road. The suspension on the front “gives” and allows the wheel to ride up and over ruts and soft spots rather then just digging in. Rear suspension squats down in the snow and improves traction and grip.

Yes, clean it or protect it but don’t say that suspension isn’t useful for winter riding.

Originally Posted by 79pmooney View Post
+1 If you read my posts you will see me talk of my winter/rain/city bikes a lot. I have two. One geared, one fix gear. I do not live in salt country now, but if I did, only those bikes would get ridden until the salt was washed away. (In salt country, fix gears have real advantages, one being the chain. Chains suffer big time in salt unless you have access to water and rinse, dry and re-lube them regularly. Messy work. But with a fix gear, you can ride utli a link freezes up. When it does, just slide the wheel forward a touch to get the proper clack back. Next link, do the same thing. (I drew the limit at two frozen links.)

Another trick - use marine boat trailer hub grease for bearings, seatposts and threads. Salt water won't touch the stuff.

Ben
While winter can be hard on regular chains, KMC Eco ProTeQ chains have a good anti-corrosion coating that works very well.
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Old 12-19-18, 05:31 PM
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+1 on marine grease; the better LBSes here use it for just about everything that calls for grease.

Winter cycling has skyrocketed here over the last several years. You see a lot of hybrids with studdies, a lot of old MTBs with either studdies or knobbies, and of course the fat bikes. You see VERY few suspension bikes. Maybe they work, but the people who own them put them away for the winter. Maybe those people don't know what they're doing; I just reckon they do.
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Old 12-19-18, 07:38 PM
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A spray can of Liquid Wrench white lithium grease. Spray it on a rag, not too heavily, and wipe the surfaces of whatever needs the protection. Wipe surface with a clean dry rag, not too vigourously, and, Voila!, protection. Leave just enough, depending on where and what, for a thin light layer. Use to seal nuts and bolts, clamps, etc. to prevent corrosion. Works great on electronic connectors.
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Old 12-19-18, 10:31 PM
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Weighing the disadvantages of riding in the winter when there's salt on the roads...versus not riding. I will ride and worry about the rest later. My feeling is that 'bikes are made for riding so ride them.' However, unlike the bike pictured in the OP, as soon as I finish my winter/wet/salty rides I will rinse down the bike with a bucket of fresh water to get all that grime off.

Dan
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Old 12-20-18, 09:42 AM
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Old 12-20-18, 04:40 PM
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I ride an old rigid hybrid from the '90s I got free and put drop bars on. I had to replace the bottom bracket this year, and one rear wheel the spokes corroded to the rim in some spots, then lost tension somehow. I run 7 speed 'cause it's cheap - it's going to wear out relatively fast if you're using it in the winter. I hear and don't completely disagree with the comments about single speed in the winter, but I've not had many problems since the first year I rode this bike (and a second winter bike which was a single speed). After a couple ice-jams of the mech that first year, I now keep some de-icer/lubricant made for locks in my pannier, but since I started using Honey Goo as my winter chain lube, I've not had my mech seize, it's mostly for my lock at work now - which also seems fine now that I liberally sprayed the inside with Honey Goo.
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Old 12-21-18, 08:34 PM
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Bikes fare much better in salt than cars do. Salt is one of the best reasons to ride instead of drive in the winter.
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Old 12-23-18, 10:25 PM
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Full-coverage fenders, mudflaps, stainless steel bolts, aluminum frame, hand-pump garden sprayer for washing off the salt, nosed ferrules (to keep water out a little more), and that KMC Ecoprotec chain. Ideas to play with to keep the bike in the color it came and not having it turning into orange. Going well for me so far, second winter with this full-on 'experiment'.
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Old 12-24-18, 10:01 PM
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Originally Posted by PaulH View Post
Bikes fare much better in salt than cars do. Salt is one of the best reasons to ride instead of drive in the winter.
or are at least cheaper than cars.
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Old 12-25-18, 09:40 AM
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I prefer rigid forks and singlespeed or fixed gear drivetrain...Minimal maintenance, the only thing that wear out is the chain and brake pads.
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