which chain lube for neglected bikes?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Ant, Jan 22, 2003.

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  1. Ant

    Ant Guest

    Disclaimer: my nice bike- i use a nice teflon lube, remove and clean the chain frequently, and
    otherwise take care of it.

    What i'm wondering about is what to use on my beater-rainbike-leave-outside-and-forget bike. The
    goal is to prolong the life of the chain, I believe, and minimize cost.

    I used to wax the chain with a paraffin/bit of oil mix. This worked well for a couple applications,
    but then for some reason, i stopped being able to get the wax to coat the chain well, and it all
    kept flaking off too quickly. applying this wax job is a time committment, so i gave up and just
    started lubing with 10w-30 whenever it needed it. no cleaning.

    however- this method quickly attracted a sandbox sized amount of grit to the chain, which stayed
    which me until i realized my chain was stretched Way more than normal for only a small amount of
    mileage (around campus). i would like to blame all this grit for grinding down my chain extra
    quickly. i will estimate the chain had around 450 miles on it, but the first 200 were not as dirty.

    so- what does the jury say? as i see it, my three options are:
    1. wax, and if it flakes off, it flakes off. at least theres no grit.
    2. oil. tough luck about the grit, but at least its lubed.
    3. nothing. no grit, no lube. kinda' like forgetting to reapply wax, but a little rusty.

    whatcha' think? am i doomed to 350 mile chain lifespans if i keep this up?

    thanks anthony
     
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  2. John Albergo

    John Albergo Guest

    ant wrote:

    >Disclaimer: my nice bike- i use a nice teflon lube, remove and clean the chain frequently, and
    >otherwise take care of it.
    >
    >What i'm wondering about is what to use on my beater-rainbike-leave-outside-and-forget bike. The
    >goal is to prolong the life of the chain, I believe, and minimize cost.
    >
    >I used to wax the chain with a paraffin/bit of oil mix. This worked well for a couple applications,
    >but then for some reason, i stopped being able to get the wax to coat the chain well, and it all
    >kept flaking off too quickly. applying this wax job is a time committment, so i gave up and just
    >started lubing with 10w-30 whenever it needed it. no cleaning.
    >
    >however- this method quickly attracted a sandbox sized amount of grit to the chain, which stayed
    >which me until i realized my chain was stretched Way more than normal for only a small amount of
    >mileage (around campus). i would like to blame all this grit for grinding down my chain extra
    >quickly. i will estimate the chain had around 450 miles on it, but the first 200 were not as dirty.
    >
    >so- what does the jury say? as i see it, my three options are:
    >1. wax, and if it flakes off, it flakes off. at least theres no grit.
    >2. oil. tough luck about the grit, but at least its lubed.
    >3. nothing. no grit, no lube. kinda' like forgetting to reapply wax, but a little rusty.
    >
    >whatcha' think? am i doomed to 350 mile chain lifespans if i keep this up?
    >
    >thanks anthony
    >
    The 10w-30 is fine. To minimize grit accumulation, apply a small drop to each link, work it in and
    then wipe down the chain thoroughly with a rag. Wipe it down thoroughly AGAIN after your first ride
    (some oil will ooze out of the links). This will minimize oil on the outside of the chain, leaving
    just a thin film to prevent rust, and leave the lube where you need it - on the inside. This is the
    method that will best serve your 2 goals.
     
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