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Do you keep your bikes clean? How clean??

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Do you keep your bikes clean? How clean??

Old 06-05-21, 07:43 AM
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Do you keep your bikes clean? How clean??

I stepped into the bike room and saw dust on a bike that only gets a ride about once a week. Made me wonder if any of you are fanatical about keeping the bikes shiny. When I ride a road bike I wipe it down to make that wax shine....especially that front hub.
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Old 06-05-21, 07:54 AM
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I am not as meticulous as I once was when I had one bike , but I keep my bikes very clean. I go through a lot of Mothers polish and shop rags. I floss the freewheel every other ride or so and generally love the act of cleaning, it is part of the whole C&V experience for me.
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Old 06-05-21, 07:57 AM
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I'm not fanatical about it. With they way I rotate through them all they tend to get dusty and such. Normally as I take one out for the daily ride I'll give it a a quick swipe with a lysol wipe or too. If I notice any real grudge I'll wipe that down to. The a quick mist with Mothers detailing wax, wipe and done. Now a lot of the time here I deal with sections of wet road from the famers irrigating. That leaves a mess on the bike frame also. I try to remember to wipe that off before the bike goes back into the bike cave to await it's next turn.
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Old 06-05-21, 08:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Kabuki12 View Post
I am not as meticulous as I once was when I had one bike , but I keep my bikes very clean. I go through a lot of Mothers polish and shop rags. I floss the freewheel every other ride or so and generally love the act of cleaning, it is part of the whole C&V experience for me.
Yup, thatís the way I see it. Preserving the old classic doesnít have to include the dust and grime. Decades old grease is not patina.
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Old 06-05-21, 08:30 AM
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Nope. I keep the drivetrain clean by not using oil that makes it dirty. Everything else eventually falls off.

*****WARNING!! SHOCKING PICTURES OF DIRTY BIKES FOLLOWS****
IMG_1248 by Stuart Black, on Flickr
DSCN1289 by Stuart Black, on Flickr
DSCN1288 by Stuart Black, on Flickr

The green stuff is what comes out of the southbound end of a northbound cow. Some of the other dirt is from the first picture...which was taken 3 years earlier.

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Old 06-05-21, 08:57 AM
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Previous years yes. Despite my bikes dwelling in a shop full of wood work machinery, I always cleaned/lubed/adjusted whichever one I chose for a ride. This past year not so much, due to our courtship/marriage followed by our bout of CV19 and 2 month recovery. Currently doing much better but having some neck problems limit me to my upright bar bikes (2), so they are the only ones not accumulating dust. Don
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Old 06-05-21, 09:53 AM
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The ones I rarely ride live under a dust sheet, the three I circulate through get a wipe down once a week, and once a month I take them outside and wash the frames and all the parts, lube and polish everything, clean the tires, etc. I also don't ride in weather or conditions that would get them muddy or super dirty, so they're all generally clean anyway.
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Old 06-05-21, 10:00 AM
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When the drivetrain gets dirty, clean and lubricate it, including the mechanisms. Clean the brakes.
As I have a number, often there is a bunch that get to this level then do two to three at a time.
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Old 06-05-21, 10:05 AM
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I am not meticulous about it, although I do acknowledge that keeping moving parts clean and appropriately lubricated is important. My Peugeot / beater is so rusty and beat up at this point that cleaning the frame seems pointless.
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Old 06-05-21, 10:27 AM
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Ever since I began waxing my chains (3 years almost now) , my bikes appear almost surgically clean to others. I wipe down my frame tubes with "tub-o-towels" and also remove my wheels and spay them in the utility tub with a dilute simple green spray an a soft brush after any wet rides. I use stainless steel appliance wipes on my titanium bike frame after cleaning the dried worms off with the tub-o-towels wipes. The stainless steel appliance wipes have a slight oil in them which pleasantly details oxidized plastic and such.

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Old 06-05-21, 10:32 AM
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I don't do off road but my roads are pretty much torn up asphalt. When I notice my chain getting cruddy I know its time for the hose. I've got a method that I like and it works well for me.

I brush off heavy dirt then hit it with a high pressure garden hose after spraying selected spots with "Scrub Bubbles". After a good rinse I crank up the leaf blower and blow it partially dry. Then I spray the entire bicycle with "ArmorAll" tire foam. After that I wipe all the foam off starting with the front wheel. Its during the wipe off that I find anything loose or worn. After dry I lube the chain and spot grease other areas.

My Dad told me any boy with a dirty bike has got dirty shorts. I have found this to be mostly true. Especially after a wet ride... Ha
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Old 06-05-21, 11:17 AM
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Not too clean on mine. Until I got more serious, my old Super Sport had decades of “stuff” on it, but was always out of the weather as taught by my father. I came back to that bike after acquiring several others and thought “oh my”. My newly purchased stuff is cleaner by default as they have all been gone through as the old Super Sport now has.

I am now at the stage where a little use/grease/dirt patina is okay and an occasional wipe down is fine. I rode a 77 BMW cycle for 28 years, and the sun took its toll as did the use. I could ride a Harley if I wanted to polish as much as ride. I feel the same for classic cars. Ones that look better than factory new are not appealing. Honest dirt and use doesn’t bother me at all.
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Old 06-05-21, 01:03 PM
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I'm not hung up on it, but I do try to keep my bikes clean and well maintained. I did ride in the rain two or three weeks ago on my Trek and I just now had the opportunity to wash it and service the chain.

And that opportunity came because as I was reading this thread I decided I wanted to do that instead of mowing my lawn.
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Old 06-05-21, 01:46 PM
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I generally give them a wipe down about once a week. I rotate through polishing. I try to hit everything that I've put a shine on once every 3-6 months, generally when I'm working on that part of the bike
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Old 06-05-21, 02:01 PM
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Nope. All my rides include trails that are either dusty or muddy. Dust I mostly donít worry about, except to wipe or brush dust off the chain after a ride if there is a lot.

If there is a lot of mud on BB, cranks, pedals, etc, I usually wash it off with water from a water bottle or hose. When I get round to buying a new pressurized sprayer that hasnít been used with weed killer, Iíll dedicate it to spraying off muddy bikes.

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Old 06-05-21, 03:28 PM
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Absolutely I do - immediately after every ride. Sometimes it only takes a few minutes, other times a deeper cleaning might be needed. Cleaning the bike after every ride ensures you have hands and eyes on the details of your bike between your last ride (which was safely concluded with all the parts you left with) and the next one (from which you'll obviously expect the same). In other words, one can discover problems before they become problems (loose bits, tire cuts that may require attention, cracks, etc). It's like preventive maintenance - and how much time does it take, really, to clean a bike?

Plus, a clean bike rides better and faster. It's true

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Old 06-05-21, 05:32 PM
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I try to keep all but one of my bikes (I have five now) spotless. There is one that I do not care about keeping clean, the Bianchi that I keep and ride in Jamaica. Mall dust is impossible to keep off of a bike and, to be honest, I don't care one bit if the Bianchi is dirty as long as it works perfectly. And it does both...

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Old 06-05-21, 06:26 PM
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I keep my bikes clean enough to tell what color they are. Usually.
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Old 06-05-21, 09:00 PM
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Newbie forum member. Longtime bike rider. Once a year, I go through the bike,making adjustments ,cleaning the paint
and shiny bits The chrome gets neverdulled and carwax on everything. Otherwise, I hose it off if it gets muddy.
good enough to keep my Schwinn going 30 years.
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Old 06-06-21, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Drillium Dude View Post
Absolutely I do - immediately after every ride. Sometimes it only takes a few minutes, other times a deeper cleaning might be needed. Cleaning the bike after every ride ensures you have hands and eyes on the details of your bike between your last ride (which was safely concluded with all the parts you left with) and the next one (from which you'll obviously expect the same). In other words, one can discover problems before they become problems (loose bits, tire cuts that may require attention, cracks, etc). It's like preventive maintenance - and how much time does it take, really, to clean a bike?

Plus, a clean bike rides better and faster. It's true

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I agree entirely!
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Old 06-06-21, 10:21 AM
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My car get washed once a year whether it needs it or not; (more if it rains), bikes get less cleaning than that. I do keep drivetrains properly clean and lubricated and every so often I will wipe down road grime but no specific cleaning ritual. Having said that I do rotate through full on lubrication checks(bb/headset/pedals/hubs) of every bike and I will clean a bike before working on it. Oh and I try to remember to wipe down a bike before posting a picture to avoid be too ostracized.....
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Old 06-06-21, 05:34 PM
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My drivetrains are clean. The rest depends on how long ago I built it.
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Old 06-06-21, 06:09 PM
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I agree with @Drillium Dude that cleanliness is next to maintenance. I try to start every ride with a clean bike.

The end of the ride is a different story. At the end of a ride a dirty bike is a happy bike.












Brent
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Old 06-06-21, 06:59 PM
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Originally Posted by masi61 View Post
Ever since I began waxing my chains (3 years almost now) , my bikes appear almost surgically clean to others.
I've seen this mentioned in a couple of different places, and find it interesting. What sort of wax do you use to do this? I would love to have a consistently cleaner drivetrain.

Also wondering about using ultrasonic parts cleaners, especially for building up bikes from various used (often grungy) components. Any particular brand that's recommended, or are they all about the same?
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Old 06-06-21, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by obrentharris View Post

Mmmm...Brent, what kind of tires are those?
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