Thread: Chain lube.
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Old 06-13-19, 08:39 AM
Cycle Tourist
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Originally Posted by cyccommute View Post
Why? Why do people think the more complicated the lubrication (and cleaning routine), the better the results? I would bet dollars to donuts (Egad, Brain! If dollars turn into donuts, Everyone's wallets will be too squishy for them to sit down.) that your routine doesn't result in any longer chain life than anyone else's. And, given the composition of the two sprays you likely aren't doing what you think your are doing. More below.

I'm only going to address this part. WD40 is most definitely a lubricant. It contains about 25% "Petroleum Base Oil" which is a mineral oil. It also contains about 75% solvent but that evaporates and leaves behind the mineral oil. WD40 silicone spray contains 60 to 80% solvent and about 1 to 5% siloxane (the "silicone" part of the spray). Step one of your procedure puts a bit of oil on the chain with a lot of solvent. Step two strips that bit of oil off and leaves behind less of another lubricant. You are simply undoing step one with step 2. That makes it mostly a waste time and solvent. Pick one, not both.
Interesting. Sounds like you've done some research and I think the solvent in WD 40 is the reason I think it's not very good as a chain lube. Especially on long or damp tours it leave me with a squeaky or rusty chain in very short order. I use it for cleaning only because it quickly breaks down the crud and I always have it around.
I use a spray silicone with Teflon additives as a follow up after drying the chain. That seems to work for me. Maybe I'm only sealing the residual lube left by the WD40 that is left behind as you suggest. Someone mentioned that it will break down in the wet but I haven't seen that happen yet. I'm not sure why it works but my chains are very clean, not greasy, move very freely and don't rust at all. Maybe I should skip one or the other step but honestly, I probably won't. 🤔

Last edited by Cycle Tourist; 06-13-19 at 08:44 AM.
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