MTB chain lube

Discuss light weight issues concerning mountain bikes & parts.

Moderator: Moderator Team

Posts: 223
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 9:09 pm

by J.v.S.


I'm struggling to find a proper chain lube for my MTB (2x10 XTR 2012). Having a road background I tend to use quite "light" types of lube but I tend to get quite some friction noise with that approach on my MTB.

So my question is which type of lube would you recommend. I ride mostly in dry conditions and try to avoid too muddy and wet conditions.

I hope this has not been asked / covered before. I did try the search function but to no particular avail.

Thanks for your input!

Posts: 1082
Joined: Sat Nov 10, 2007 4:23 am
Location: Poland/Toronto

by krzysiekmz

I used many but find Rohloff the best. Finish line is good too. I used green bottles.

With Rohloff the drivetrain is quiet and that is a + :)

Orbea Oiz - xxxx
MSC Koncept Carbon Di2 - 6955g
Leichtkraft Team Carbon - 6868g.

Posts: 956
Joined: Tue Dec 16, 2003 4:24 am

by limba

The only lube I like is Finish Line. Red when it's dry. Green when it's wet.

Posts: 37
Joined: Sun Oct 23, 2011 2:26 pm

by DavidR1

I tried a bunch of lubes and found none that are great for longer rides and found mostly all need to be applied each ride. I currently use Rock N Roll Extreme as I have like that it cleans the chain and can be applied easily.

Of course you will find no definitive answer here. Best thing to do is try to find demo bottles of as many lubes as you can find and use them all till you find one you can live with.

Posts: 956
Joined: Tue Dec 16, 2003 4:24 am

by limba

Yeah, it's like asking which bib shorts you should buy. Ask your local stores and other riders what they use, try them out and stick with the one you like.

Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Jul 11, 2012 7:22 am

by swaits

I am really happy with Rock N Roll.

Posts: 573
Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:04 pm
Location: Sunny UK

by 02GF74

I use motorcylce chain lubes - the type that comes in a spray can and have solvent so is runny so can penetrate the links and rollers when applied but thickens after the solvent evaporates. the chain is wiped after application to prevent pick up of grit, dust, small rodents etc.

whether this is any better than a more expensive bicycle chain lube I cannot tell since I have not kept log of mileages, and in any case, a couple of rides in mud throws the data out of skew.

the secret is to have a chain wear tool and measure regualry to catch chain wear earlyu to save cost on replacing the cassette.

Posts: 18
Joined: Sat Apr 18, 2009 12:01 pm
Location: Hampshire, England

by oxdrove

J.v.S. wrote:I ride mostly in dry conditions and try to avoid too muddy and wet conditions.

I recommend Rock-n-Roll Gold.
For winter/wetter conditions I switch to their Extreme.
Get the bigger bottle. Re apply often, I re-lube approx every 6 to 9 hours.

Posts: 223
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 9:09 pm

by J.v.S.

Thanks a lot for all your input guys.

Being a user of the Finish Line Red on the road bike, I gave the green "Cross Country" - labeled one a go and I have to say it "sounds" and "feels" very, very smooth. Will also give the other suggestions a try but my LBS had a FL - green on stock so I gave it a first shot.

User avatar
Posts: 1022
Joined: Wed May 13, 2009 5:23 pm
Location: Denmark

by the_marsbar

I've used Green Finish Line for a while, but now I only used wax-based lube on my MTB. White Lightning Clean Ride is great for me. The problem with wet oil is that is attract dirt, and is difficult to clean without a chain cleaner device IMO.

Posts: 211
Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 2:18 am

by project3

you can look my my silly R and D i did. Havent come to any conclusion yet.

Posts: 118
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2006 2:08 pm

by Dirk

I did a forum search several years ago as I was trying to find the oil that is applied on new KMC or Sram (don't remender exactly the brand I used then) chains.
Just had to clean the outside of the new chain to avoid dirt clinging to the chain, but the grease did imho a splendid job inside the chain.
The inside of the chain is where grease counts.
Found out it was Gleitmo 582 from Fuchs.
White chain grease containing a solvent so it penetrates well.
It does lengthen chain life.
Keeps older or even worn chains quiter in muddy conditions.( Old 9 sp chains above 0,75mm stretch 'retire' on the steel drive train of my singlespeed)
Comparable to Holmenkol extreme lube, but is a bit thicker in consistency.
I use it all year round wet or dry.
Still did it's job at the end of a very wet and muddy 100km marathon.
In dry conditions I just spray the dust of the bike and relube after 2 rides.

My method:
After cleaning and drying the chain I spray the grease on.
Work it in by turning the cranks slowly for a few minutes.
Whipe excess away with a cloth.
Let it dry for min 30min.
Clean transferred grease during the lubing proces from the chainrings and derailleur sprockets.

Posts: 682
Joined: Sun Feb 25, 2007 1:26 pm
Location: Australia

by legsrburnin

Rock N Roll Gold in all but the worst conditions, then it's Rock n Roll Extreme
Lefty heaven

Posts: 1123
Joined: Mon Jul 26, 2004 1:06 pm

by grover

Finish Line Green when it's wet.

For all other conditions I went from Finish Line Red to Rock n Roll Gold to White Lightening to Squirt -
I like Squirt the best, especially in really dry conditions it's the only lube that keeps the chain quite yet doesn't attract a lot of dust.

Posts: 709
Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2009 4:50 am

by Colin

I've always heard great things about Squirt, unfortunately I didn't have very much luck with it. After about 3 rides with it, my bike started this unbearable creak! Cleaned my drive train and lubed the chain with some Rock n Roll, and never had any more issues. Really wish I would have had better luck with it, I loved how clean it kept my drive train!

Post Reply
  • Similar Topics
    Last post