Chain Cleaning

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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by bikedoc

at least there are two sensible people on here

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by fankozola101

I used to do this every 1000-2000km (I try to avoid riding wet roads):

1. Remove chain using the Wipperman Connex link.

2. Put chain in 2Ltr plastic bottle.

3. Add 200ml of kerosene.

4. Screw lid on plastic bottle.

5. Shake for 1 minute.

6. Remove lid from plastic bottle.

7. Empty fluid contents.

Repeat steps 3-7

8. Add 200ml of acetone.

9. Screw lid on plastic bottle.

10. Shake for 1 minute.

11. Remove lid from plastic bottle.

12. Empty Fluid contents.

13. Remove chain from plastic bottle.

14. Put chain in an open container, whilst shaking container to promote movement of chain links, apply Kluber Structovis BHD Spray.

15. Remove excess lubricant from outer surface using clean rags.

16. Remove cassette and chainrings, clean in kerosene, rinse with acetone.

The result from above is a chain that has <0.35% wear after 10,000km

Nowadays, I do this every 1000-2000km (I try to avoid riding wet roads):

1. Remove chain

2. Remove cassette and chainrings, clean in kerosene, rinse with acetone.

3. Install a new chain

The result from this method is I spend less time in the garage, and chain wear never exceeds 0.15%
Last edited by fankozola101 on Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

by Weenie

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by rruff

Zigmeister wrote:My theory is, when you train/race and put miles on the chain, it is going to stretch and wear out anyway in 1500 miles. So a little extra debris/dirt that might be inside the links, oh well, it isn't going to cause any premature wear before it stretches and need replacing anyway.

"Chain stretch" = chain wear. It only stretches because it is worn.

Your practice is ok but your theory is bad.

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by lobular

Run chain through cloth (soaked in kerosene) once a week, let dry, re-lube (Rock n Roll gold). Install new chain every 3000-4000km or thereabouts (always use Sram power locks instead of joining pins). Chains are cheap, not sure why so many people make such a fuss and try and get a million km's from each one by removing every week and going through such a convoluted cleaning process.

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by Horacio

Opinions are like a$$holes...everyone's got one, so here's mine.

Remove quick link, remove chain.
Soak in kerosene while I clean the bike.
Agitate a few times during bike clean.
Remove cassette and clean each cog with kerosene rag
Clean rear derailleur and small gear
Reassemble cassette
Remove chain from kerosene bath
Lay out towels and lay chain on towel
Shoot citrus degreaser into chain, flip, repeat
Blow chain using compressed air while chain is on towel, flip, repeat
Melt wax in pan
Lay chain inside and remove once no bubbles are evident
Allow to dry

Every 300 miles or so, I apply White Lightning Clean Ride wax lube. In the event of a rear puncture, handling the chain/rear derailleur results in clean fingers and gloves and zero rust if I get caught out in the rain.

If I dont have the time for all the above, I have an extra cassette and chain ready to roll.
Crazy, I know.

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by Gregorio

My chain cleaning and lubing techniques are making me feel inadequate.

I usually just spray wd40 on a rag and wipe debris off chain, cassette and der pulleys as best I can.
Then lube, I like Boeshield most of the time but in the winter months or wet rides in the spring I use a tip from Pez, Prolong engine treatment cut with ?? I think I used park cl1 mixed 1:1.
It can keep a chain quiet and performing flawlessly better than anything else I used in the winter.
It can get a little messy though.
I very rarely take my chain off. (kmc) and I usually get 2500 miles out of a chain.

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by thisisatest

the acetone trick is neat. someone i know would clean, then rinse with acetone, lay it down, and light it on fire. really. slightly crazy, but it definitely makes sure there was nothing left under the rollers.

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by prendrefeu

That would definitely ensure the chain is dry post-cleaning rinse, ready for re-lube.

I'll give a shot as I've got plenty of acetone lying around in gallons.
Exp001 || Other projects in the works.

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by ross

kfreytag wrote:Ever since I discovered it, I've been using Sheldon Brown's ShelBroCo Bicycle Chain Cleaning System.

It takes me about seven hours to do a chain, but I'm getting 10,000 miles from a Shimano chain and 15,000 from Campy.

YMMV :wink:

Very good :lol:

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by Lig

Hi all,

I personally don’t see the need in removing your chain to clean, in my opinion this will be the ‘weak link’ making it weaker?! So long as you keep on top of cleaning it.

I run mine through the park tool cleaner device, using the park tool degreaser then rinse with water, then dry.

I have used loads of lubes but by far the best for my road bike is Chain-L. Absolutely superb stuff. Put it on and wipe excess off and the chain is super quiet and shifts great. Much better than dry wax lubes IMHO….


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by ty-ro

I'm not getting all evangelical about how I clean my chain, but I just use the Park chain cleaner that you snap over the chain and run it through. Anything wrong with this method?

I seem to get good life out of my chains, with the exception of the Sram chain I am using now.

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by Calnago

Wow, 56 posts and counting in chain cleaning. May as well add my 2 cents. I'm with ty-ro above. I think the Park chain leaner works perfectly. I also never break a Campy 11 speed chain until its time for a new one. I use Duo-monde Tech lube and have tried countless others. With Duomonde Tech, I just do as they say, soapy water, rinse and reapply. I have found this to be the quietest lube and longest lasting, especially in wetter climates.
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by DaveS

giantdale wrote:Every one may have her/his own methods, most certainly. Chain manufacturers, though, very much advise against any sort of washing, degreasing or similar, because once you remove the original grease from between the links, that chain will never again be properly greased and its lifespan will be shortened.

Hogwash. What's inside a chain after any significant use is grease and dirt, which makes a grinding paste. There are no seals to keep out the dirt, so not cleaning a chain just insures a short life.

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by giantdale

You didn't understand. Of course you should clean the chain. By using a rag. Then you oil the chain. And then you wipe of the excess. It really simple.
Last edited by giantdale on Fri Feb 10, 2012 9:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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by stang1

Do not know if im doing it right, but i got a cheap $2 spray bottle from the reject shop, filled it with turp, and sprayed it on the cassette at a 180 degree angle whilst turning the chainring backwards, let it sit dry, and walaaa , everything is brand spanking new like the day both chain and cassette were removed from thier boxes. a 2000km cassette still looks brand spanking new except for wears. yes, i wash everything down after..

edit; yes i do re lube them. Frequency of me chain cleaning/bike wash = every 4 big rides.

by Weenie

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