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Riding on sandy roads

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Riding on sandy roads

Old 07-31-21, 03:29 PM
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dvai
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Riding on sandy roads

Commonly, you see roads or trails by a lake or sea. They are covered or partially covered by sand.
I wonder how much damage to the drivetrain this could cause. To some degree, you will get some on the drivetrain and fine sand usually gets everywhere - much worse than dirt.

Any experience?
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Old 07-31-21, 04:50 PM
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terrymorse 
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The only sand I worry about is the stuff on the curves that makes descending more exciting than it needs to be.

Drivetrain? Feh. Maybe some sand would make it wear slightly more quickly. Nothing to lose sleep over.

Find something else to worry about.
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Old 08-01-21, 03:01 PM
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I ride where I ride. Components are replaceable.
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Old 08-01-21, 03:05 PM
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I ride around the NJ shore several times a year. In fact, I just finished a long weekend tour that had me on sandy roads. Iíve never found it to be a problem.

But stay out of thick sand buildup. Great way to crash.
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Old 08-01-21, 05:28 PM
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ofajen
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Welcome to my world. All my rides involve some portion of trail surfaces with large and small crushed stone, stone dust, dirt, sand, rock, and just about everything else. I suppose there is a bit of increased drivetrain wear, but Iím still replacing chains at 3000 miles or so. So itís fine.

Do watch for hitting a sudden patch of very loose sand or similar material when cruising on firmer surfaces at speed. Itís like someone slammed on your front brake without letting you know in advance.

Otto
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Old 08-01-21, 08:10 PM
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Yeah, I went down on some sand along a trail when I was in Cape Cod a few years ago. The first bad part was that it was near a parking lot, so all kinds of civilians saw me do it. The second bad part was that I was banged up and it was rather unsightly. Nothing serious, but a fair amount of blood. I found a life guard station and they helped me out with their first aid kit.

In all, it was a totally embarrassing experience. Beware of sand.

Drive train? Well, it was a rental.
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Old 08-01-21, 09:46 PM
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i think the sand might polish the components before it wears them out

Sand is usually softer than aluminum or steel drivetrain parts. Maybe a jockey wheel might see more wear, but they are cheap
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Old 08-01-21, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Symox View Post
i think the sand might polish the components before it wears them out

Sand is usually softer than aluminum or steel drivetrain parts. Maybe a jockey wheel might see more wear, but they are cheap
Wholly untrue. Quartz is far harder than aluminum or virtually any steel.
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Old 08-01-21, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by MinnMan View Post
Wholly untrue. Quartz is far harder than aluminum or virtually any steel.
Thanks for the correction - i learned something
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Old 08-02-21, 01:14 AM
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Originally Posted by dvai View Post
Commonly, you see roads or trails by a lake or sea. They are covered or partially covered by sand.
I wonder how much damage to the drivetrain this could cause. To some degree, you will get some on the drivetrain and fine sand usually gets everywhere - much worse than dirt.

Any experience?
You know some people ride on gravel, intentionally, right? Agree with the others, the wear will be unnoticeable, so long as you keep your drivetrain maintained (clean and properly lube it regularly). I'd be more worried about the sudden handling issues that sand causes under a bike.
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Old 08-02-21, 07:02 AM
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recently did 2 extended rides in seaside areas. took a close look at my chain the other day thinking I might give it a quick wipe but saw many small particles of sand sticking to it. I think I will remove it & give a a more thorough wiping. not sure yet if it requires what I normally do on an annual basis
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Old 08-02-21, 07:10 AM
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As others have said, the danger from sand is crashing, not component wear (to any appreciable degree to be worried about).
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Old 08-02-21, 09:38 AM
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BITD, I got my first top tier bike used, and it came from a sandy area.

When I tore it down for service, it was a gritty mess- especially the headset. Not sure if related, but the bearing races were brinelled or more likely false-brinelled. I rotated the races to keep things going.
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Old 08-03-21, 09:21 AM
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Don’t go into the corners too hot!
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Old 08-03-21, 10:16 AM
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Everyday I ride on sand and except for the deep stuff it's no trouble. Gotta watch the corners though. With that said, I use wax on my chains so less sticks to them, but the only real issue is when it's raining or has rained and a fine slurry is splashed everywhere on and inside the components. It doesn't help that this slurry is heavily laden with sea salt. I hose everything after every ride when it's wet out (lots of heavy morning mists) and do a complete over haul of bearings etc at the end of the rainy season. HTH
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