Engine oil as a chain lubricant?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by jack06, Oct 25, 2006.

  1. jack06

    jack06 New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2006
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    hi guys
    Is it possible to use a very light-weight engine oil such as 10-40w to oil the chain of a bike, I would be getting a road bike.
    look forward to you replies
    jack
     
    Tags:


  2. nerdag

    nerdag New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2004
    Messages:
    477
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you want lots of dirt to stick to it, then yes.

    Seriously though, this is a very contentious topic, and a quick search will give you all the opinons, dogma, bullsh!t, and occasionally facts, on this topic.

    My preference for lube is Prolink - works a treat for me, and doesn't cost too much. There are a lot of options out there, though, if you can be bothered investigating.

    n
     
  3. sogood

    sogood New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2006
    Messages:
    2,148
    Likes Received:
    0
    Absolutely, lots of conflicting opinions torn by polarized priorities.

    It's,

    More dirt vs Less dirt
    Good wet weather durability vs Poor wet weather durability
    Good dry weather durability vs Poor dry weather durability
    Lubrication efficiency
    Easy application vs Difficult application

    Select your prorities and you might get a more specific answer.
     
  4. HowardSteele

    HowardSteele New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2006
    Messages:
    457
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oiling a chain is a contradiction on practise, a chain operates better heavily lubed but not for long, it becomes sticky and collects dust, this forms into a black abrasive goo, damaging chain, jockey wheels, cluster and chainrings. Lots of chain oils act more as dirt magnets than lube. I’ve used motor oil in an emergency and wow it worked well for a while and then into the ride I experienced the thickest crud on my chain ever. I personally think less is more, more mileage out of your components that is. As a MTBiker,cleaning the chain and then light oil, is necessary after every ride (i use white lightning), but that is off road conditions. A clean properly lubed chain in my opinion is the most important component on a bike.
     
  5. RickF

    RickF New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2005
    Messages:
    646
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you want to use motor oil, use a mix of two parts mineral spirits to one part motor oil. Apply liberally to the chain, then wipe the chain as clean as possible to remove the oil from the surface of the chain. The mineral spirits will evaporate, leaving the oil on the inside, where it belongs. By wiping the surface clean, less dirt sticks to the chain.
     
  6. CAMPYBOB

    CAMPYBOB Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2005
    Messages:
    11,945
    Likes Received:
    1,038
    i've used straight 30-weight, non-detergent motor oil as a chain lubricant since 1972.

    with normal cleaning i've never expirenced any accellerated wear on my components.

    for long, wet rides and races i've also used automotive bearing grease over the oil to prevent wash-off.

    keep in mind that if you ask thirty guys about chain lubricating, you'll get thirty different answers.
     
  7. carbonguru

    carbonguru New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2006
    Messages:
    299
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree with CampyBob. Each to his own...:rolleyes:



     
  8. gclark8

    gclark8 New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Messages:
    3,522
    Likes Received:
    3
    Engine oil is for engines! It is hydroscopic, it absorbs moisture, not what you want in a gearbox.

    A bike chain and sprocket system is a gearbox.

    Ask your local bike shop, who sells you the bike, warranty may be an issue, particulaly if you use shimano drive components.
     
  9. kingsting

    kingsting New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2003
    Messages:
    33
    Likes Received:
    0
    Motor oil will work but it's so messy at times that it's probably not worth the effort. I'm sure it would be fine on a roadster type bike with an enclosed chaincase.

    Many engines use a timing chain with sprockets that's bathed in oil so the gearbox argument is void. The motor oil/gearbox argument comes up a lot on the Mini and several motorcycle forums where the engine shares the same oil as the transmission. The meshing of the gears in a high performance motorcycle tranny will break down a conventional motor oil in a very short period of time. Oil breakdown would hardly be an issue with a bicycle, even those with hub gears.
     
Loading...
Loading...