77

I am an industrial chemist, and manufacture commercial-grade degreasers and other cleaners. Firstly, there are 3 main parts to a degreaser: Alkaline booster, to increase the pH, allowing the dirt, grease and grime to be effectively removed, for faster cleaning Solvent, to cut through tough grime and grease, as well as extract grime and grease from hard-to-...


50

Do nothing. Yes, nothing. Unless you are biking wearing a hazmat suit through some corrosive volcanic crater where it rains acid. Rinse it off, at home when it's convenient, or it is especially dirty. Give a more thorough cleaning once a year in the spring. Lube the chain occasionally when it begins to make some noise. Other than that, you really don't ...


15

There is a similar question (but not the same question) here and here. The short version is that regular upkeep -- chain replacement, cassette replacement, lubrication, brakes (modulo say rebleeding a hydraulic set), tires & tubes you should do at home as needed (and I've given some guidelines for the first two), and you should be familiar with basic ...


14

A lot of people are now out of the habit of doing chain cleaning beyond wipe down level. The reason to clean thoroughly is a marginal improvement in wear life and performance. But the key word is marginal. What you get for the effort is below the threshold of what many would consider worthwhile, especially riding recreationally. Note that the expense level ...


14

3 weeks isn't likely enough for you to damage the chain noticeably (rattling sounds and all that jazz) unless you're putting particularly heavy mileage. This isn't something I'd recommend doing; diesel fuel doesn't have the right lubricating properties for a bicycle chain. It's also not the most pleasant stuff to be around. Diesel will act as a degreaser ...


13

Fold a paper towel a couple of times and stick it between pad and rim. Squeeze the brake lever and rotate the tire. Depending on the contaminant you may want to wet the towel, douse it lightly with a solvent, or (to get solvents off) use alcohol.


11

I've heard you should keep high pressure water away from your bike, because it can easily work it's way into the bearings, even sealed ones, especially around the bottom bracket and wheels. Pressurized water will push the oil out of the spaces between the chain links, and it's probably not a good idea to use pressurized water at all. You should be able to ...


11

A thorough way to do it would be to: Remove the cranks, bottom bracket and seat post. Make sure there is a decent hole between the seat tube and bottom bracket shell (might depend on the frame). Ram rags down the seat tube with a broom handle and extract them via the bottom bracket shell. Once the bulk of the grease is removed (or pushed to the bottom of ...


11

This is an XY problem. Seatposts should be lubed. While removing all lube may solve your slipping problem, it will likely do so by making the seatpost corrode into place, which isn't something you want. Instead, fix or replace your seatpost clamp, and/or make sure your seatpost isn't undersized.


11

I don't know why you think bicycle degreaser products are 'weaker for more money' when you have basically proved to yourself that gasoline (petrol) is a very poor cleaner because it evaporates very quickly. I've had success with a basic citrus degreaser available at Home Depot that costs $4 for a reasonably sized bottle. It's effective at loosening dirty ...


10

Ultimately its going to be down to how zealous you want to be. When you think of cleaning a chain, you need to think of two things. First, there is the cleaning - getting off the dirt and lube that has caked itself onto the chain. Then, there is lubing the chain to make it run nicely, (As part of a lube you'd maybe give the chain a rub with a dry cloth to ...


10

Let it air dry (and/or wipe it dry as much as you can) and move on with your life. Don't put it near a heater, cause that isn't good for the rubber stuff. Re-lube the chain. What gets you in winter is not so much the snow/ice, but the salt (which doesn't affect your bike if its just standing there). In this case, if you have the time and space to bring the ...


10

This might work, but probably not as well as using dish soap and water. Because greases are made up of nonpolar chemicals, they are best dissolved by either nonpolar solvents or detergents. Nonpolar solvents are fluids made up of nonpolar molecules, which stick directly to the grease molecules they dissolve. This category includes things like acetone, petrol,...


9

As a bicycle mechanic in the Netherlands, I always advice not to use a waterhose. Rain doesn't get into your bearings and chain, while water from a waterhose sometimes does get in nasty places. I sometimes see chains or even a bearing which is rusted because the oil/grease is 'hosed away'. You can safely use water out of a bucket, with a sponge. But do not ...


8

Park Tool recommends their own product: I used to hate gloves for anything (car, bike, whatever) until I got used to wearing them while in Iraq and Afghanistan. Originally I used the Mechanix Wear gloves and I still like them for working on my car:


8

Simple, yet powerful solution - pour max 1 teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate (baking soda, found in any store) into the shoes before or after wearing them. It will kill the bacteria and any other "stuff" that produces bad smell. It has no negative effects on skin whatsoever, except when applying it to freshly shaven skin - as it may cause inflammation of the ...


8

I would avoid doing this. If the Teflon lube has any kind of solvent in it (which it probably does to carry the Teflon), it will break down the grease in the bottom bracket. Eventually, the grease will thin out enough that it will flow out of the bottom bracket, and No More Lube=A Very Bad Thing. If you are using a basic cartridge bottom bracket, they are ...


8

I use a portable weed sprayer with warm water in it. Like one of these - Portable Pressure Sprayer. They aren't high enough pressure to cause problems to bearings and light enough to carry up and down stairs in an apartment building/small enough to store under a kitchen sink.


8

Hang the bicycle upside down, on a stand if you have one, but you can also simply suspend it with a bit of rope. Next, you can easily clean the inside of the tube with a bottle cleaner dipped in solvent. Since the bike is upside down, there is no need to remove the cranks and BB. Gasoline or paint thinner works well to remove grease. The last bit of grease ...


7

Chain will rust always after washing (or even light rain or a puddle of water), if not re-lubed. I think this is detrimental to the chain, as it removes material from the rollers and thus contributes to chain stretch. Bolts for stem, handlebars etc. seem to always like to rust after rain or washing. I don't think it is a big deal, but it ruins the look of ...


7

Your bike has a conventional threaded bottom bracket (square taper). Since its a relatively new bike, it shipped with a sealed (*) bottom bracket. So, the only maintenance that can be done is tightening the bottom bracket cups (which hold the bottom bracket in place) and replacing the bottom bracket itself (which is a sealed unit containing the bearings, ...


7

Depends a little on what conditions you ride in, but the basic steps are all the same. Take the bike outside. If you have a leather saddle, remove it. If you have a bike computer then remove that too, as well as any bags or tools. Rinse the bike with a shower setting on your hose. Do not use any sort of jet. use biodegradable dishwash and warm water ...


7

I'd be wary of using IPA because it may affect the glues used in the helmet, even if it doesn't attack the foam in any obvious way. And the manufacturer would probably advise against it (and many other disinfectants). I doubt a hairnet would help, as forehead sweat is probably the biggest issue that will get complaints (I suspect people will react more to ...


7

Have you also considered that Under NZ Heath and Safety laws, you have a responsibly to keep your workers safe - you have to ensure you are not endangering there health though poor hygiene. One thing you could do is ring Worksafe NZ and ask them for advice as to what you obligations are regards keeping helmets clean. I imagine its a similar problem to ...


7

The most important thing is that there is no standing water inside the tubes. Usually there are drainage holes around the rear dropouts and bottom bracket. Make sure the holes exist and are not obstructed. You can look inside the frame through the bottom bracket, seat tube and head tube. Some people use oil or wax-based surface treatments against rust, e.g. ...


7

Some notes from my experience: If you are in a 220-240 volt country avoid the cheap Chinese cleaners, they are designed for 110 volts and remove a rectification diode as a hack to make it work on higher voltage. This doesn't work well as the peak voltages are still higher and the output transistors fail. Secondly, I found ultrasonic cleaning in just water ...


7

When I need to get it actually clean, and the whole area is really dirty with caked-on grime or dirt, what I use is a brush like this (pictured is from a Finish Line set): Using warm water, I get the rim/tire area wet, then put a generous amount of dish soap directly on the brush and get it wet too. Then I go around scrubbing at it. When complete, rinse ...


7

Rotors can always be cleaned; sometimes you have to use scotch brite or sandpaper, but usually brake cleaner alone will clean them fine. Make sure you clean the areas around the rotor, especially the hub, to make sure the contamination doesn't drip, "sling" or migrate back onto the rotor. The best brake cleaner is perchloroethylene (original red-...


7

Degreasers need to dissolve the oils in lubricants. I am not sure why this works from a chemistry perspective, but alcohols like the ones in sanitizer don't seem able to dissolve traditional chain lubricants as effectively as other degreasers, e.g. mineral spirits, turpentine, or citrus degreasers. Indeed, chain waxing proponents recommend that you degrease ...


7

The little riveted points you mention are pivots, there are a bunch of them. What you can do is spray a little lubricant in each pivoting part of the derailleur, then physically move it side to side by hand a number of times and it should loosen up. Pull it towards you and then push it back, 10, 20, 30 times. It might take a bit of force to start with and ...


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