Ride & Shine (Part III)
In my last couple of posts, I have discussed the benefits of a clean bike:
your bike will last longer
your bike will perform better
your bike will look better.
We have also looked at how a routine good bike cleaning program can provide you with an opportunity to look for existing or pending bike problems before they become an issue out on the road. This whole look-over/cleaning drill will only take you a few pre-ride minutes and can potentially save you hours of roadside problems.
We are about ready to start the wipe-down but first we need to think about products to use. Remember your bike, even if its carbon, has a lot of steel and alloy parts and alloy finishes that can be susceptible to corrosion (ie: bearings, derailleurs, chains, shifters, cables, cable housings, and cable ferrules). And with the price and potential chemical sensitivity of expensive carbon parts and painted surfaces, it pays to use a chemical cleaner that is carbon tested and compatible. Things to avoid using on your bike, include:
Excessive water, particularly high pressure can be hard metal parts and can wash lube/grease from bearings.
Household “all-purpose” cleaners such as Simple Green or Formula 409. These products can “kill your bike with kindness”.
Solvents such as “brake or electronic cleaners”.
In the ARB Shop we like to use cleaners and lubes (we will discuss lubes in an upcoming post) specifically formulated for use on bicycles. We use the MOTOREX BIKE LINE products on customer as well as personal bikes. The MOTOREX company is based is Switzerland and manufactures a high quality line of products used by pro teams such as BMC to maintain their bike fleets. For your bike, we are recommending two products: MOTOREX BIKE CLEAN and MOTOREX BIKE SHINE for bicycle frame and wheel cleaning. Again we will talk about chain cleaning after we get the frame clean.
These two products will give you a two step clean and shine procedure that will have your bike looking like new. All you will need is a couple of soft towels and a bottle of BIKE CLEAN and a can of BIKE SHINE for your home shop cleaning.
BIKE CLEAN is a bio-degradable, carbon tested bicycle cleaner. It is a highly effective, solvent-free, gel cleaner that will even work on very dirty bicycles. BIKE CLEAN will quickly and loosen and remove mud, soil, dust, etc. BIKE CLEAN leaves no greasy residue and doesn’t affect brake action. You can either spray and wipe with a soft towel for lightly dirty bikes or spray on, let stand for 5 minutes and rinse with low pressure water avoiding contact with head sets and bottom brackets.
For that “new bike” shine, follow up with:
BIKE SHINE which is a “care & protection” spray. BIKE SHINE will freshen colors and give a high gloss. In addition, BIKE SHINE protects, preserves and has a water-repellant beading effect. To use spray on and wipe with a soft cloth. Your bike will look like new.
Next week, Chain, chain, chains…………… (Apologies to Aretha)……………………