Gritty Gears/how to clean

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Rob87
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Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby Rob87 » 7 Feb 2018, 4:35pm

Evening all.
My chain and gears are making a gritty noise due to rubbish of road I imagine.
Whats the best stuff to remove grit with a brush? i've heard if you use WD40 on your casset it can strip out tje grease from the barings within?? bit beyond me as I'm not too sharp with bike mechanics.

My instinct says sprays and clean with a solvent like Carb Cleaner then relube.

Any Thoughts?

roubaixtuesday
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby roubaixtuesday » 7 Feb 2018, 5:02pm

The only effective cleaning thing I've ever used is one of these.

https://www.parktool.com/product/cyclon ... ber-cm-5-2

But to be honest, if you use your bike regularly this time of year, cleaning is probably a bit of a waste of time. I write as a commuter.

I'd either relube and hope for the best or alternatively, new chains can be had pretty cheap, that grit has probably worn it, so just replace. Replacing a chain is an easy job, *much* easier than properly cleaning one.

Others will certainly have radically different viewpoints!

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mjr
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby mjr » 7 Feb 2018, 5:09pm

GT85 is better than WD40 and a small engineer's brush will do as well as most things. Probably an old rag to floss between the cogs if it's really grim.

I think the "mickle method" does as well at keeping an oft-used chain clean as anything else http://www.cyclorama.net/viewArticle.ph ... ubjectId=9

Chain replacement at 1/16" over the 12" (½%) http://www.sheldonbrown.com/chain-wear.html#measure
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flat tyre
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby flat tyre » 7 Feb 2018, 5:17pm

Spray on soapy water (washing up liquid) use a rag to shift the dirt from the chain, the cassette rings and the jockey wheels), rinse with fresh water, hose on jet setting is fine, dry off and re-lube.

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foxyrider
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby foxyrider » 7 Feb 2018, 5:20pm

wipe all that black gunk off your chain - you clearly have to much sticky lube on it that's collecting said grime. easiest way is to run the chain backwards through an old t shirt, when you can touch it without getting clarted in black its about as good as you need this time of year - do not put any more lube on there! The sprockets themselves do not need any lube so wipe them off quite thoroughly, same on the gear mech jockeys. With luck it'll get you to the better weather then get a new cassette and chain fitted which should take you through into next winter (unless you do my mileage (200mpw!)
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Psamathe
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby Psamathe » 7 Feb 2018, 5:39pm

Do tell me if I'm doing it wrong but I:

Remove chain, put in sealable Tupperware container with white spirit (loads of white spirit covering chain). Seal and shake around plenty to remove dirt & grit. Then decant white spirit and wash chain with soapy water (washing-up liquid), then rinse off with water. Hand-up to dry.

Using chain degreaser and a paint brush (outside where ground can take the degreaser) brush the cassette/mechs/chain wheels with degreaser which quickly removes the crud. Then wash off with a hose pipe.

Refit dry chain and chain lube it all.

Used white spirit can be put back in bottle and left for crud to settle then re-used next time.

Does not take long to do though chain takes some time to dry (alternate two chains if you need bike daily or can't always leave chain to dry).

Ian

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mjr
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby mjr » 7 Feb 2018, 6:11pm

Psamathe wrote:Do tell me if I'm doing it wrong but I:

It's your chain. You can abuse it however you like :)

I mostly gave up rinsing with degreasers after having a few short-lived gritty chains that way. I currently suspect the people who say it leaves the rollers underlubed are correct.
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Brucey
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby Brucey » 7 Feb 2018, 6:52pm

before you do anything it is a very good idea to assess if the chain is worth cleaning, or if it is already worn out. If it is less than 0.5% worn, clean it, relube it and re-use it. If it is 0.5% to 0.75% worn, you may be able to fit a new chain onto the extant cogs and it may run OK without skipping.

If the chain is 0.75% to 1% worn then expect a new chain to run OK mostly but to skip on some of the old sprockets under load. Sod's law says that the sprockets you get skipping on are the most worn because they are your favourites. The skipping may go away after a few hundred miles (as everything beds in), but most folk will be losing the will to live by then....

Any form of solvent, degreaser, etc can wash out the lube from the seal lips. The seals then wear , and then the bearings themselves suffer with being degreased next time you clean the parts or water will penetrate the mechanism in the meantime.

A hot jetwash will shift everything off the chain and sprockets including any chain lube. It will also wreck the bearings if you point it in the wrong direction.

If your chain has become dirty very quickly, ask yourself if that might be delayed in future by fitting mudguards and/or mudguards with a much longer mudflap or something; an ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure sometimes....

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peetee
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby peetee » 8 Feb 2018, 1:42am

My method is 1 hour soak for chain and cogs in muck off motorcycle chain cleaner. Scrub with old toothbrush. Rinse thoroughly with warm soapy water. Dry on radiator. Lube chain with tf2 chainwax. I used to use duckhams motorcycle chain wax that you heated in its tin on a stove. Was truly excellent stuff but stank when heated and upset my mum no end. 30 years on and flown the coup but I reckon if I had the stuff she would still come round and box me ears if I tried to use it. :D
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Tiberius
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby Tiberius » 8 Feb 2018, 7:14am

Psamathe wrote:Do tell me if I'm doing it wrong but I:

Remove chain, put in sealable Tupperware container with white spirit (loads of white spirit covering chain). Seal and shake around plenty to remove dirt & grit. Then decant white spirit and wash chain with soapy water (washing-up liquid), then rinse off with water. Hand-up to dry.

Using chain degreaser and a paint brush (outside where ground can take the degreaser) brush the cassette/mechs/chain wheels with degreaser which quickly removes the crud. Then wash off with a hose pipe.

Refit dry chain and chain lube it all.

Used white spirit can be put back in bottle and left for crud to settle then re-used next time.

Does not take long to do though chain takes some time to dry (alternate two chains if you need bike daily or can't always leave chain to dry).

Ian


+1 for this method.

GarethF
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby GarethF » 8 Feb 2018, 9:21pm

Yes. But pop the chain on a baking tray in the oven set fairly low to dry. Then relube while still warm. Better to wash up the tray before you're rumbled!

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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby Vorpal » 9 Feb 2018, 7:30am

Lots of threads on this already. Here's the link from 'too good to lose'...
viewtopic.php?f=25&t=22074
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Samuel D
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby Samuel D » 9 Feb 2018, 11:12am

If you oil a dirty chain, the oil carries some of the dirt into the bearing surfaces where it grinds. Someone once disputed this with me, but I have now tried it too many times to believe otherwise. I can possibly believe some people don’t hear or care about the grinding.

I do this anyway because it’s hard work to clean the chain every time it needs oil (and dry waxes are worse).

Johan Bornman has an e-book called Everything you need to know about Bicycle Chains: A book of special insights for expert mechanics, available (only, I think) on Amazon for £5.40. It’s worth that if you’re interested in technical discussion of chains and how to look after them.

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NATURAL ANKLING
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby NATURAL ANKLING » 9 Feb 2018, 11:38am

Hi,
Are you going on a ride, say 30 - 50 miles and after ten miles you stop and notice that all the lube has worn off and chain is covered in something and is grinding :(

I always carry a can of solvent an oven and some gloves so I can do this regime on route......get real just add some oil and change the chain when its past the limit.

Do they relube chains on the TDF on a rainy stage?
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mig
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Re: Gritty Gears/how to clean

Postby mig » 9 Feb 2018, 11:42am

have seen mechanics re-lube chains in paris-roubaix.

i don't remember the oven though.