Is there a lube that is as clean as Wax but last like oil?

A bit of context, I ride a mountain bike in norcal, normally I use wax for all my bikes, I've been doing it for years. I do hot laps (7 miles) like 4 times on work days and then weekend rides(2x15 miles~), every two rides or so, my chain will be dry, so I rewax it. I clean the chain twice a week on Fridays and Mondays. I do so by taking my park tools chain cleaner, fill it up with rubbing alcohol and clean the chain, then carefully re-wax and wipe off the excess.

I love how easy is to clean wax, I also love how clean is, dirt doesn't stick to it BUT I HATE having to clean-rewax so often. I've gone through several oil based lubes with nasty results, lots of gunk everywhere, I know dry lube is supposed to be cleaner than wet but it still nasty for me, or I've tried the wrong ones.

From a practice perspective, what kinds of lube do you guys use? I just want to spend less time cleaning and more riding...

  • I'm confused. How are you "waxing" the chain? And what is your criterion for a (waxed) chain to be "dry"? Commented Aug 30, 2018 at 22:02
  • Is it possible there is a link between cleaning the chain twice a week (seems a lot?) and it not being able to hold wax? Because there's some alcohol left dissolving the wax? Or because you're not applying enough wax after all of it is gone after each cleaning? Just thinking aloud here..
    – stijn
    Commented Sep 1, 2018 at 7:40
  • 1
    I do about 200km a week. And I usually go several months without relubing. I use oil which sticks well to the chain, but it definitely does not give you good looks... To me, it sounds like you are just too fuzzed about aesthetics. In the end, a bike is just another kind of vehicle like a car, that exists to get you from A to B in the most agreeable way (which the car does not IMHO). Good looks should be a secondary concern, at most. Commented Sep 3, 2018 at 22:27
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    @cmaster Sorry, but telling people that they're wrong for wanting their bike to look nice is completely unconstructive. Commented Sep 5, 2018 at 13:47
  • @DavidRicherby I realize that my comment is not the answer the OP is looking for (hence it's a comment, not an answer). Nevertheless, my suggestion is definitely the easiest way for the OP to solve their problem. I commented in part to help people change their focus away from looks, and towards function. A shift in focus that may easily gain you thousands of dollars and months of time in the long run. Note that I'm not saying: "Never relube"! I'm just advocating for a different compromise between looks and effort. Where the OP sees their sweet point, well that's their call to make. Commented Sep 5, 2018 at 21:29

2 Answers 2


From a practice perspective, what kinds of lube do you guys use? I just want to spend less time cleaning and more riding...


I use squirt dry lube. your chain stays very clean and it's long lasting in good weather conditions. if it does rain or in winter squirt has a low-temp dry lube for cold & wet conditions.

squirt dry lube


Dry Lube is what you are after.

It is like oil in many ways — apply it like oil, work in for a few seconds, wipe the chain dry with a cloth. Soon its volatile components evaporate off and leave a dry lubricant on the chain, usually some Teflon or Wax based compound.

As we do not do product recommendations here, it is probably best if you trawl web sites for reviews, but you will need to try a few different ones to find what suits you the best. There are many different brands around, you LBS will only stock a limited number (probably no more than a hundred different ones :) ). Everyone has their own favorite and will tell you it is the best despite never trying a vast majority of the others.

Rule of thumb is to use wet lube in the wet and dry lube in the dry.

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