What is the best way to clean a frame?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
garygkn
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What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby garygkn » 30 Oct 2009, 11:30pm

I will be getting a stripped frame and it needs cleaning and a polish as well as a tiny bit of touch up paint nothing serious.
What is the best way to go about the cleaning without damaging the finish and could anyone recommend a polish as once it is clean I intend to keep it that way.
Also any tips on touch up paint?

Much appreciated.

stuartg
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby stuartg » 31 Oct 2009, 4:52am

I use a type of covering that are used on canal barges, can' t remember the name, but will post later. You place on the frame, leave for 5 mins and then rub off. Leaves a lovely sheen to the bike - also adds a additional protection.

There are no problems with cleaning afterwards.

Stuart

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Mick F
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby Mick F » 31 Oct 2009, 8:19am

I've used car products:
T Cut to clean, then a couple of coats of Turtle Wax for the finish.

Give it a good wash with hot soapy water first and allow to dry thoroughly before the T Cut.
Mick F. Cornwall

garygkn
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby garygkn » 31 Oct 2009, 9:29am

stuartg wrote:I use a type of covering that are used on canal barges, can' t remember the name, but will post later. You place on the frame, leave for 5 mins and then rub off. Leaves a lovely sheen to the bike - also adds a additional protection.

There are no problems with cleaning afterwards.

Stuart



Thanks Stuart that looks interesting please do post when you get the product name.

garygkn
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby garygkn » 31 Oct 2009, 9:32am

Mick F wrote:I've used car products:
T Cut to clean, then a couple of coats of Turtle Wax for the finish.

Give it a good wash with hot soapy water first and allow to dry thoroughly before the T Cut.



Thanks Mick F, does the T-Cut take only the grease and dirt off or does it go deeper? I suppose the Turtle wax will build up a barrier of protection after wards either way.

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Mick F
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby Mick F » 31 Oct 2009, 9:38am

I think T Cut is very much like Brasso. It has a cleaning agent and is ever-so-slightly abrasive. It removes grime and a tiny bit of the surface of the paint/enamel/lacquer. That's what you clean a car's paintwork with, it removes the surface grime and smooths out scratches. It works very well indeed. I think it has ammonia in it as a cleaning agent.

Turtle Wax is great as a polish and protective finish, and it lasts for ages.
Mick F. Cornwall

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DaveP
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby DaveP » 31 Oct 2009, 5:25pm

Mick F wrote:I think T Cut is... ...ever-so-slightly abrasive


Not nit picking, but I think that description could mislead the inexperienced. T Cut is very definitely abrasive and sustained use will eventually remove the paint you are trying to clean. All these colour restorers work the same way, by grinding off the discoloured / weathered surface of a paint film. Its slow, because it is a very fine textured abrasive, which is also the reason why it leaves an apparently scratch free surface behind.
Its good stuff, just dont overdo it or go into a daydream and polish the same spot over and ov.... :D
Trying to retain enough fitness to grow old disgracefully...

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Mick F
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby Mick F » 1 Nov 2009, 10:09am

Yes, you're right about the abrasive qualities, and you're right about the warnings, but my frame is very hard enamel paint with an equally hard lacquer on top, and although in time it would wear away, it hasn't done yet. Before anyone says that my frame was only restored a year or two ago, it survived my cleaning regime for 21 years before that.

I guess all bike frames are enamel painted? I could stand being corrected.
Mick F. Cornwall

gilesjuk
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby gilesjuk » 1 Nov 2009, 11:33am

Only use t-cut when the top layer of paint is damaged, covered in tar etc.

I always remember a school friend cleaning his bike with petrol, saying how clean it looked. It would only be a matter of time before the metal was showing :D

colnagokid
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby colnagokid » 1 Nov 2009, 11:53am

I would echo the previous guidance and say the use of "T-Cut"on relatively thin layered frame finishes should be infrequent ( as stated in previous posts it is used to remove oxidisation).

In fact, within the car repair trade, far superior products are available with various grades of abrasion/polish finish.

Some correspondents may be familiar with the "Farecla" car refinish trade products ( an excellent British company) which I use exclusively both on my ageing Mercedes and the enamel finish on several classic bikes including a 1949 Flying Scot.

I can recommend the G10 fine cutting compound (far less abrasive than T-Cut) and Black Top Glaze finish polish but you must stick to the guidance in the application to leave you with a weatherproof skin.

Hope this helps

Lori

Alan D
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby Alan D » 1 Nov 2009, 12:54pm

Having got all the gunge off the drive train, The frame gets the same treatment as the car, hot soapy wated and a rub over with Turtle wax.

saudidave
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby saudidave » 1 Nov 2009, 11:59pm

T cut does indeed have an ammonia type of cleansing agent and is slightly abrasive. Having done a lot of work on cars this past 40 years, I can assure you that you would have to use it vigorously every week for a long time to rub paint off. The best way to use it is to blather on a thick coat, then leave it for 15 minutes or so. If it starts to dry, put more on to loosen it up. In other words, let the chemicals in it loosen up the grime rather than rubbing it in to abrade the grime off. You will then find a light polish with it will clean the paint up easily and you can then apply a protective polish - Turtle wax or the like.

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Deckie
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby Deckie » 2 Nov 2009, 12:41pm

If you're in a hurry & don't want to be getting out buckets and polish, a wet wipe does the job beautifully just quickly wiping over the frame after a ride.
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mrbarry
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby mrbarry » 11 Nov 2009, 9:43pm

I clean mine with 2 pack paint thinners. It removes sticky stuff, cleans like you wouldn't believe and dries off on its own very fast, oh and it removes old wax. It doesn't damage the paint but test on an inconspicuous area first, paint from a rattle can or other soft paint coatings will wipe off in a single pass of the rag :shock: It can also remove stickers. With care tho I find it very useful. I then re wax with Autoglym car products as they are fast and easy to use and provide good protection/finnish.

Not for the faint hearted and caution is a must, but its a very good cleaner.
Doesn't matter what you ride as long as you ride!

niggle
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Re: What is the best way to clean a frame?

Postby niggle » 13 Nov 2009, 9:48pm

To be sure of not damaging the paint or wearing it away you could first use a good degreasing detergent like Proclean or Muckoff. If that does not shift stuff first time then try again before spot treating stains and scratches with Safe Cut (a milder form of T-Cut). You can then finish with something like Turtle Wax Extreme Polishing Wax which is a solid wax that comes in a tub and lasts ages once applied and has excellent dirt shedding properties.