Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

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Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby Shpox » Sat Jul 07, 2012 10:34 pm

Hey guys. I'm just after some opinions on how members go about cleaning their road bike frames.
As we're based in Aus, a lot of the products listed online and recommended for the American market aren't available frame.

For general wipe downs, at the moment I use Meguire's Quick Detailer which is the same stuff I use on my car. It seems to work great at removing smears or any chlorine marks that might be in our water. You can buy this from Supercheap but it's cheaper off ebay.

I've seen some recommendations to use baby wipes as this do well at removing things like grime and oil. Personally, I'd steer away from BW use as some tend to leave an icky soapy residue to dry onto the frame depending on the type used. Some also have some bonus chemicals in there.

For protection, I don't like waxes as they tend to be a bit harder to clear off on bike frame's nooks once they age, so I'd prefer something additive that have UV protection. I'm unsure quite what to use here.

Other products I've seen recommended are:
  • Simply Green (for washing)
  • Lemon Fresh (for washing)
  • SC-1 (for protecting)


The general cleaning process for the frame, I tend to enjoy this guy's procedure: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wPII5vCrcTo

Would love to hear your insight and recommendations!
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by BNA » Sun Jul 08, 2012 7:17 am

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Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby RonK » Sun Jul 08, 2012 7:17 am

Sounds pretty anal - Chux and Spray'N'Wipe does the job for me.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby Tim » Sun Jul 08, 2012 8:39 am

Can't beat this stuff for UV protection; http://303products.com/index.php/303r-aerospace-protectant-32oz.html

I (and many others) use it on a kayak that sits outdoors all year round, fully exposed. It actually works, not just a gimmick. I don't bother with my bike though.
Cleaning, just an oily rag or chux. Contrary to what everyone else does I never turn a hose to my bike unless its really grimy. Most so called sealed bearings aren't from what I've found, so I avoid water near any moving parts, if I can.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby rednaxela » Sun Jul 08, 2012 9:19 am

RonK wrote:Sounds pretty anal - Chux and Spray'N'Wipe does the job for me.

I just wash down with hose set on trickle then wipe with wet rag, finish with Mr sheen
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby gururug » Sun Jul 08, 2012 9:25 am

Used to use "wet look" once or twice a year when doing a full clean.
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Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby RonK » Sun Jul 08, 2012 10:30 am

rednaxela wrote:
RonK wrote:Sounds pretty anal - Chux and Spray'N'Wipe does the job for me.

I just wash down with hose set on trickle then wipe with wet rag, finish with Mr sheen

No hose in the balcony of my apartment. I have two bikes to clean so no time to get pernickety about it.
Start with a clean Chux (sold in bulk rolls at Supercheap) at the top of the bike, and work my way down, finish with the chain.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby Parrott » Sun Jul 08, 2012 12:07 pm

Baby wipes, then Mr Sheen.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby master6 » Sun Jul 08, 2012 1:09 pm

Woolworths Home Brand Furniture polish, and an old rag. Removes grease, snot, urine splash, roadkill, drink spillage, and shines and protects.
If you feel that your socio-economic status and/or ego demand something better than Homebrand, pay twice the price for Mr Sheen and do the same job.

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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby PawPaw » Sun Jul 08, 2012 4:18 pm

frame and wheels
if really dirty, wet rag to wipe off most stuff
then rag in laundry detergent and hot water
kero or metho for spot grease

I've never bothered trying to protect the gloss finish coat of my carbon frame, but suppose car polish might be appropriate.

drive train
rag dipped in kero.
chain gets a blast of wd-40, wait 5 mins then run chain through rag again.
then a final blast, leave on overnight, and wipe off before riding.

then occasionally I take the chain off and shake in bowl with kero.

brake calipers and ders and sti levers get a short blast of wd-40, wait 5mins, then wipe outer surfaces clean with rag.

I don't care what they say about wd-40 not being a good lube.
I've used at least a dozen products and none of them seem to lube or keep the chain cleaner, or make it last longer.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby bychosis » Mon Jul 09, 2012 10:18 am

PawPaw wrote:rag dipped in kero.
chain gets a blast of wd-40, wait 5 mins then run chain through rag again.
then a final blast, leave on overnight, and wipe off before riding.

then occasionally I take the chain off and shake in bowl with kero.

brake calipers and ders and sti levers get a short blast of wd-40, wait 5mins, then wipe outer surfaces clean with rag.

I don't care what they say about wd-40 not being a good lube.
I've used at least a dozen products and none of them seem to lube or keep the chain cleaner, or make it last longer.


Prepare for flaming, sure I wont be the only one thinking this is not a good idea.

Cant believe you use WD40 for lubing on a bike and think it is good, especially near brakes. I hate the way WD40 leaves a greasy residue, but doesn't do much for lubricating.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby Shred931 » Mon Jul 09, 2012 11:29 am

Hose down the frame, use a soft brush to clean away stubborn dirt and build-up. Then use a chux to wipe down the bike when wet. Dry the frame and parts with a microfibre cloth.

If your drivetrain requires maintenance remove the chain and scrub with a brush and degreaser. Remove the cassette and degrease. Rinse all parts off with water and let them dry. Re-assemble and re-lubricate your chain.

I don't tend to remove the chain. I just spray on the degreaser being careful to avoid the bottom bracket and rear hubs. Scrub with a brush, hose off, wipe down and once dry re-lube.

Done.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby Mrfenejeans » Tue Jul 10, 2012 12:33 am

I was wondering about this on Sunday, and then decided on a bucket of warm soapy water.

No real "process" used by me, have taken to turning the bike upside down and sitting it in our bath bars against the wall.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby PawPaw » Tue Jul 10, 2012 3:27 pm

bychosis wrote:Cant believe you use WD40 for lubing on a bike and think it is good, especially near brakes. I hate the way WD40 leaves a greasy residue, but doesn't do much for lubricating.


I've indicated my experience with WD-40 is as positive as expensive bike lubes.
I'm interested in hearing from anyone who has had bad experience with it. So far I haven't.
I'm also interested in hearing from anyone who gets longer life from their chain by using an expensive bike specific lube.
Contrary to bike industry hearsay, WD-40 includes the same petroleum (paraffin) distillates used in bike lubes.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby bychosis » Wed Jul 11, 2012 8:45 am

Maybe it's the wiping process, but I've always found that WD40 leaves a slimy residue that attracts grit etc. combine this with the penetrating/grease dissolving effect and I won't be putting WD40 on MY bike for lubricating.
I also wouldn't put it anywhere near brakes. Bakes require friction, WD40 is a lubricant. WD40 will penetrate the material on the pads and decrease braking performance over time.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby PawPaw » Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:05 pm

What you call WD-40's slimy residue, I call lubricating petroleum distillates, used in most bike lubes.
And I am sure WD-40 manufacturer intent is for what is left, is purely for water repulsion and lubricant purposes.

To test, on your stainless steel kitchen sink, have a mate make a small spray of wd-40, and similar for any number of high end bike lubes, wait 5 minutes, then rub a different finger through each, and try and tell which is which. repeat the blinded test 4 more times and see how reliable your pre-conceptions are.

Keep in mind WD-40 is going to penetrate deeper, and draw grime out from under half bushings and pins.
In my view, keeping clean the under surfaces of bushings, and pin and plate interfaces, is just as important as lubricating same.
WD-40 has the added advantage of flushing grime out, when sprayed adequately.
The issue of attracting grime onto the chain is dealt with as it would be for lube, and that is by running the chain through a cloth 5 minutes or more after spraying.

Whatever, I find my gears are as quiet and shift as well with WD-40, as with high end products.
I also know older elite racing cyclists, with hundreds of thousands of km's in their legs, who use a mixture of diesel fuel and motor oil for their lube.

Re brakes, I am not so reckless as to spray WD-40 on the brake pads, or rims. that's why the cans come with a 'smart straw'.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby Sharkey » Wed Jul 11, 2012 4:20 pm

I use Armor All alloy wheel cleaner for the entire bike - frame, wheels and drivetrain. I was using it to clean the wheels on my car. You just spray it on, leave for a few minutes and hose it off. All the brake dust and road grime just hoses off and I figure if it worked on shiny, polished alloy wheels without damaging them it should be ok on my bikes. After hosing I dry everything off with a couple of old nappies and relube.
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby clackers » Wed Jul 11, 2012 6:03 pm

bychosis wrote:Maybe it's the wiping process, but I've always found that WD40 leaves a slimy residue .


Like kero residue, this is the non-volatile lubricant, the bit that evaporates is the carrier.

Rock and Roll, Purple Extreme etc have a similar principle, but what's left behind is a wax, with its own pros and cons.

Personally I see nothing wrong with WD40 other than the lube left behind must be short polymer chain stuff that will wear off quicker than a thicker grade. I have used it in the country after riding hours in the rain and it was all a milk bar had!
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Re: Reccomended Frame clearning products and processes?

Postby rosh1985 » Wed Jul 18, 2012 9:06 pm

My LBS suggested laundry detergent + hot water, clean rag/chux and some cheap degreaser. No need to purchase expensive cleaning products.
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