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A Word About Chain Lube

One of the most frequently asked questions here is how do you lube your chain properly.

Well.......first everything I say is only my opinion and based more on observation than testing or scientific fact.

1.What do I lube my chain with? Finish line Cross-country wet lube, Phil Wood tenacious oil, Chain-L, Pedros, basically any good quality bicycle specific oil based chain lube.  

2.Why do you lube your chain with oil instead of wax based lubes that keep the chain really clean? Because in my opinion wax DOES NOT WORK! Would you pour wax into your engine?

 Well, based on chain wear measured with a Park chainchecker I believe wax lubes cause accelerated chain wear. Why you ask? My feeling is a good quality chain (Campy,  Wippermann, Dura Ace, SRAM, KMC ) should, with proper lubing and cleaning, last upwards of 4000 miles, but we've seen these chains completely worn out with only 2000 miles on them. Why were these chains worn out? Wax lube, you know the ones White Lightning, Krytek etc. You can probably get just as good results using WD40 and spraying it on the chain repeatedly, the wax lubes stay clean because the wax doesn't get into the rollers to properly lube the chain. Have you ever noticed how noisy wax lubed chains are? Have you also noticed wax lubes don't fight corrosion? Have you noticed you need to relube your chain more often? My chain is nice and quiet and if properly applied, oil doesn't need to make the chain dirty. 

  I recommend first you clean the chain completely with a water soluble degreaser (we use Finishline Ecotec) then reapply the lube one roller at a time, when you finish, run the chain through all of the gears to properly disperse the lube, after you've run through the gears wipe the chain with a clean rag until nearly dry. Ride and enjoy the silence! When you return from your first new lube ride wipe the excess lube off and you should be good for 300 to 500 miles depending on conditions. 

So what are wax lubes good for you ask, we highly recommend them for lubricating clipless pedals, inner cables, and Speedplay cleats.

Remember everything I've stated is my opinion, don't email me telling me how great you think wax lubes are, I personally don't think they are.

So if you follow any info on bikes you've probably come across http://www.friction-facts.com/ his data says that wax reduces friction, you will however need to follow his method which in the perfect world is probably fine but in the real world is pretty complicated. You'll need to pay to read his info for tech-minded people it's interesting for someone who just wants to ride their bike don't bother.

 

 
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