And during the couple of short times of year when it can be wet, I just apply it more often. About Us | I’m a big fan of Squirt! Singletracks Merch | For some, this means re-applying lube every day, while for others, it may be once a month or more. A mountain bike chain is prone to rust; even the mildest of watery conditions can bring about that familiar (to us) mucky brown appearance. As expansive as the chain lube market is and because drivetrain maintenance rituals differ so greatly, I don’t advocate one lube over another. Changing between types of lube is a case where using a degreaser may be warranted. Wipe off excess lubricant with a clean, dry rag. Now that you have all your cleaning materials, simply follow our steps here in order to clean your mountain bike: Remove the wheels and clean them separately. Best chain lube for mountain, gravel and cyclocross bikes Again, wax is the reigning champion when it comes to keeping your drivetrain well lubricated and clean of contaminants. Cooking oil is a standard lubricant in the home that is ideal for keeping away rust from metal surfaces. Squirt the chain down and wipe off the excess with a rag. It ensures the hardworking moving parts of your bike chain are able to move smoothly past each other, it helps stop the chain wearing down or rusting, and … Apply a very small drop of lube to each individual roller (put the lube on the part of the chain that’s closer to the ground to prevent dripping lubricant on your bike frame). I use Bacardi 151. Dry lubes do not stand up well to the rigors of mud and wet weather riding, but they do do well at not attracting dirt in dry conditions. A bicycle chain needs lubricant to overcome mechanical resistance, prevent rust and wear, and keep your drivetrain in tip-top condition. Oiling the chain on your mountain bike keeps the moving parts loose and allows them to move with little friction. I run full synthetics (Royal Purple and Mobil 1) in all of my vehicles, but it seems like overkill when simple, existing products are more than enough to fully protect our bicycle drivetrains. Wet lube has a stickier, more viscous consistency, acting as a water repellent, and is best used in wet or muddy conditions. "If you want to do something ordinary people can't, you have to be willing to do what ordinary people won't". This means it was made thin enough to drip on and penetrate the rollers and pins, yet thick enough to set up and remain, all while preventing rust and resisting dirt, water, and mud (depending on lube type) as much as possible. Drive train stays really clean, and not collecting the sandy loam on the gears really helps extend their life. Some insist on using degreaser as often as they re-lube the chain for various reasons, but this involves careful consideration lest you defeat the purpose of lube. Why? I've been using the Mike T method for over a year now. It usually holds up to 50 miles in dry condition and slightly less in wet. Most lubes unlike are now engineered better, providing lubrication whilst not collecting dirt, and grime and continuing to wash rain off while riding. And you can’t carry that kind of stuff with you from the US under the plane. Dirt between the moving parts of a chain increases friction and wears down the chain faster. I then touch it up as needed with a dry wax. I'm not saying you're wrong for using "homebrew", but I'm trying to understand the appeal of it versus the exisiting products. Apply an hour before every ride. Leave chain on bike, attach chain cleaning machine, run chain through machine, wipe dry(I guess), clean mess off of rest of bike, re lube. I save wax from ski season (really) and put a degreased, water washed and dried chain in the molten wax for about 5 minutes. Step 1, Choose a wet lube if you’ll be biking in wet weather. The down side to dry is that it must be applied more frequently than wet lube. And the best part is, you can do it all at home with the right supplies and some basic knowledge. To reap the rewards without suffering the strikes, properly lubing your chain should be done in moderation, as you delicately balance the amount of lube, type, and frequency of application in accordance with chain use in varying conditions. To spot-clean the chain while it's still on your bike: Brush out the links with a firm brush (an old toothbrush also works). Just run the chain backward several spins. A mountain bike will “shine” in the mud, but on a paved road it will be blown away by a road bike – and vice-versa. @mongeolf, carb cleaner, acetone or gasoline will work best. If not used properly, the same lubricating compounds designed to protect and enhance drivetrain performance are inherently at odds with the very purpose for which they were created. Motor oil is a perfectly good lubricant for a bike chain. Not a problem for its intended use but not so good for bike chains or other parts. Routinely degreasing a chain is not necessary, but if you insist, thoroughly rinse and dry the chain prior to applying lube. In our country, dry works best. Appearance, time, or distance are not as reliable as sound (grinding, creaking, squeaking, squealing) as an indicator for when a chain needs to be lubed. They lubricate the chain, bearings, and other moving parts with used engine oil. I find the photo associated with the article funny. Mountain Bike Deals, Copyright 2021 Blue Spruce Ventures LLC | Mind you, not fresh but used engine oil. These wet and dry lubes have all been tried and tested by us in all conditions and have received a score of over four out of five in their review. [1] X Research source You can find bike lubes of all kinds online or at your local bike shop.Step 2, Use a dry lube if you live in an arid climate. Degreasers are for removing oil/grease from chains – general bike cleaning sprays are just to help break down road dirt/grime. WB40, for example, is not a good lubricant for your bike chain. Of course, as you mentioned, chain’s sound is the best indicator when relubing is required. IMBA Epics | Very late to the discussion, but I use Simple Green (diluted). Sunenlyst Bike Chain Oiler Lubricator, Portable Bicycle Chain Gear Oiler Roller, Green Roller Lube Oil Maintenance Tool for All Kinds of Bikes, Such as Mountain, City, Folding 4.4 out of … Nope, I was simply synthesizing various opinions I’ve garnered from around the web: http://forums.mtbr.com/drivetrain-shifters-derailleurs-cranks/who-uses-motor-oil-lube-their-chain-15953.html. Remove it and let it cool. While it’s possible the new lube penetrates the chain and sets up properly, it is also very likely that it will not, and will become suspended by old lube. I was skeptical at first, but now I don't see the point in trying anything else. Theoretically speaking, frequent riding using a dry lube in wet, muddy conditions, seldomly wiping the chain down between rides, will require a shorter interval between application than less frequent riding using a wet lube in those same conditions with a good wipe after each ride. Come join the discussion about bike parts, components, deals, performance, modifications, classifieds, trails, troubleshooting, maintenance, and more! MMMM liquid sandpaper! Nope, but unless you have the time, patience, an obsession with chemistry experiments, or think The Man is trying to keep you down, what’s the point in not using a bike-specific lube? A toothbrush works well along with plenty of elbow grease (see what I did there?). Over-lubing can also be detrimental, as excess lube attracts dirt, forming a gritty paste which grinds down chain components and other drivetrain bits. Found it the most versatile for any season, any condition. While strict wet and dry lubes mark the extremes of lube types, many manufacturers market options in between, such as lubes for wet and dry conditions, 2-in-1 self-cleaning lubes, one for on-road and one for off, and… the list goes on. Best Bike Trails | Best MTB Gear | I’m of the opinion that degreasing is mostly unnecessary, save for the following scenarios: The perfect amount of lube is enough to overcome the resistance set forth by the rollers, plates, and pins, and prevent rust to those parts, without attracting excessive dirt. MTB Podcast | Good article. Wet lube will be more resistant. Bike Chain Lube Unlike grease Bike Lube (also Chain Lube) are not paste but liquid, lubes are often found to replace lubrications where oil previously would've been used. For most day in, day out maintenance, simply wiping down the chain with a dry rag or scrubbing the chain with a dry toothbrush between every ride and before application of fresh lube will suffice. It doesn’t hurt anything if you get it on your bike, smells not so bad, and is (supposedly) not bad for the environment…and it’s fairly cheap. While degreaser rids the chain of grime, it also strips it of the very substance your chain needs. Non-specific lubes are either too light to stay put, too heavy to properly penetrate, too sticky, too watery, too… you get the picture. Goes on thick, stays wet on chain, attracts dirt but doesn’t wash away easily. I read I think it was on mbaction "ask RC" that you can use a light coat of motor oil to lube chains, just wipe it off real good, and obviously a quart of that stuff will last a long time. While it is by no means comprehensive, here’s a list of many well-respected bicycle-specific chain lube brands to get you started: Your Turn: Share your favorite chain lube, or favorite lubing technique/time interval, with us in the comments section below! Bonus: it smells like bubble gum or bananas or something. I use 5W 20 Amsoil - because I always have a little left over from changing the oil in my car. Throw some shop towels in the car and develop the habit of wiping down your chain after every ride. Most sources recommend some amount of wait time between application and tearing off into the sunset. Stock up on a handful of lubes with different properties, and cycle through them over the next year to find which suits you (and your chain) the best. Widgets, Explore   Once you’ve scrubbed it with degreaser, thoroughly rinse the chain with water and let completely dry before applying lube. Doesn't Tri-flow, Pedros, and Phil Wood offer them? It is much more convenient than switching to a wet lube. Note: the intricacies of chain lube use is a topic of much debate among mountain bikers. How to clean and lube your bike chain Keeping your bike chain clean and lubed is the best way to extend the life of your drivetrain, keep your bike shifting smoothly, and save money in the long run. What works best is a matter of personal experiment. Wet lubes typically require a second wipe, so remember to hit it again with a rag at the trailhead. And of course we have no way of evaluating who benefits more from these specific products - us or the maker. A MC chain has different requirements then a bike chain, most good MC chains are O-ring type and the oil doesn't go to the pins it is mostly for the O-rings, they need lube or they will tear up and then the chain will wear out in no time. Over-lubricating … JavaScript is disabled. Historically, the discussion surrounding types of lubes have revolved around using wet lube in wet conditions and dry lube in dry conditions, but these are simply guidelines. In addition to keeping the bike moving smoothly, oiling the chain frequently will help remove debris from your chain. The only way I could see light motor oil working well would be on a road bike or winter snow/Ice riding. Wet lube. What don't you understand about "homebrew is a FRACTION OF THE COST of specifically designed products." Add lube to your chain : Choose a bike lubricant that’s right for the conditions. Slowly run the chain up and down the cassette to help distribute the lube as far down into the rollers and pins as possible. The steel used for the chain is, of course, prone to rust in even the mildest of watery conditions and brine is a much more aggressive agent of corrosion. The use of cooking oil originated from the use of castor oil. The latter will not effectively clean a chain… My friend uses some sort of car stuff that is amazing he told me… his shop told him about it I’ll post it on here the next time I talk to him! Dry lubes typically require a few hours to set up, while a wet lube needs less. If it is dirty, the lube will work the dirt into the moving parts of the chain, which accelerates chain wear. Hi i use glosil chain lube which is working amazing for my bike, Company   Now, use your free hand to pedal backward, until the entirety of the chain has been run through the rag and wiped off. Well, if I am going to try motor oil (it’s $2 for a gallon of 10w30) should I mix it with mineral spirits to thin it, or is it good as is? If not taking chain off of bike, try to protect tire from spills. Dry lube has a lighter consistency, goes on wet, and then dries, leaving behind a protective, lubricating layer (wax, Teflon, ceramic). Step 2: Oil Your Bike Chain. Bicycle-specific lube is designed with your chain’s best interest in mind. Evenly applied on the lower side of gears, inside, so your not applying lube directly to the cassette as well. Use the de-greaser to remove old grease, lubricant and muck from the sprockets, chain rings, chain, derailleur and pulley wheels. Especially any common household suggestions? The best advice I can offer is to plan ahead, lube up the night before, and always refer to the manufacturer recommendations. Sound is the best way to determine when lube should be reapplied. The question of how often should I degrease and lube my bike chain is a common question, especially when beginning. I feel as if it would attract too much dirt and grime. For a better experience, please enable JavaScript in your browser before proceeding. Again, the real world answer is… it depends. Don't go too light because you don't want to have it flying off . After years of trying various types of lube, I have been using this formulation for a number of years. Omitting the rinse and dry step leaves grime and water on the chain, which cuts and/or suspends actions of new lube. Use chain lube that matches your conditions, wipe off excess after application, and allow at least a few hours for the lube to set up. Whether your mountain bike is dirty, wet or dry, you can rely on the Boeshield T-9 to lubricate, deep clean and protect your chain from corrosion and rust. Support Us | Bicycle chain lubricant, chain lube or chain oil is an essential item for your bike maintenance. Taking care and providing timely maintenance to the bike chain is important to achieve a smooth riding experience, improve the longevity of the bike components, and save you money from needing … Squirt is my lube of choice for the same reasons you mention. Heard of everything from Olive Oil to Chainsaw Bar oil. Triflow is my go-to lube. That said, if you’re in a pinch, squirt it on, wipe it down, and get going! Hopefully you’re intentionally trolling here, but in case you’re not… DO NOT USE MOTOR OIL ON YOUR CHAIN!! All the moving mechanical parts and components of your bicycle needs regular maintenance and care, and for that, you will also need the best lubricant for a bicycle chain.. It is important that you have a clean mountain bike chain before you apply bicycle lube to it. NIXFRIXSHUN is the absolute best lube I’ve ever used in 30 years. Soft, dry cloth to dry your bike. It will also grind away at the cassette, requiring both to be replaced sooner. 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