chain maintenance

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by Dan, Oct 8, 2009.

  1. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Worked on the @$^$(&&*+*&+# GB for hrs today. After getting that going, I noticed my chain looked awful. Dried out, old grease. Was just going to lube it and the clip snapped. I looked around the net and there are lots of opinions. (imagine that, lol) Just wondering what folks here do for chain maintenance?

    A lot of what I read was kerosene to clean and good lube every 200 miles.

    (I have used bacon grease and it really worked great)(( no, dogs did not chase me and it didn't rot. lol))
     
  2. bandito

    bandito New Member

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    Chain maintenance is like oil everyone has an opinion. With my bicycle I use a silicone based spray lube, teflon would be good too. Clean chain is also better than a muddy one. I usually lube it about once a month...try this site it has everything to do with bicycles.......Sheldon Brown's Home Page
     
  3. Outrunner

    Outrunner New Member

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    I buy my chain lube from motorcycle shops. They sell several brands
    of spray on chain lube that doesn't fling off while riding.It's the only
    way to go for any bike going over 10 mph for extended periods of riding.
     
  4. bseelbach

    bseelbach New Member

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    Everyone has their opinion. I follow tips from hardcore biking friends. After the chain is clean use white lightning lubricant. It is a semi solid that dries to leave a wax coating. You need to start with a clean chain as the logic is that it protects the chain and keeps grime from adhering. Most bike shops carry it and I have seen in at Wally World as well.
    White Lightning

    Careful with the application. If you're worried about aesthetics, keep it off your tires. It dries opaque white- quite visible on black tires. Once dried its a pain to wipe off rubber.
     
    #4 bseelbach, Oct 8, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2009
  5. Kevlarr

    Kevlarr New Member

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    I've heard that you shouldn't clean a chain with anything harsh like carb spray, brake cleaner, etc. because it will remove all the lube from the chain and unless you remove and soak it in oil you run the risk of running the rollers dry.

    Most everything I've heard about chain cleaning is for MTBs but it should apply to any bike, just clean it with warm water and dish soap, dry and use spray lube. I remember seeing a chain cleaning system years ago that clamped over the rear derailleur, it even had brushes inside, you filled it with soap and water then just cranked the pedals for a while with the bike on a stand. The thing looked more gimmicky then anything.
     
  6. cajunmike

    cajunmike New Member

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    Pack a chain in vasoline and bake it in the oven for and hour.
     
  7. davearoy

    davearoy New Member

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    I use "Chain Saw Oil" mainly because I have a gallon of the stuff laying around. It appears to lube the chain well, I do not pick up any dirt. I never thought about the spray stuff, I might give that a try as well
     
  8. 2door

    2door Moderator
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    I've posted this before, ages ago, and can't find the thread but here's something I learned from a dirt bike rider friend of mine. Remove the chain, you do have a master link, right? Soak it in Scott's Liquid Gold. It's a wood cleaner and preservative but the ingredients are good for many other things, bike chains and squeaky door hinges. The product cleans and lubricates the chain. I do mine about once a month. Works great. Hint: Scott's Liquid Gold comes in either aerosol or pourable containers. Get the pourable and fill a shallow container that is big enough to hold your chain. Shake it around and you'll see the dirt, grease and grime that comes out. Afterwards hang the chain up and let it drip for a while before reinstalling. I wipe the access oil off with a paper towel.
    Tom
     
  9. bairdco

    bairdco a guy who makes cool bikes

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    i just let my pants leg clean it off for me...
     
  10. xlite

    xlite New Member

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    I've been using motor oil from a squirt bottle for the past 30 years. I would never remove a chain just to clean it but will dunk one in a bucket of 50:1 if it's already off. I'm the only one in my small circle of friends that has not had a chain break or wear out yet. My theory is the layer of crud protects from grit and loss of lubricant.

    Recently been experimenting with Green Grease. Not looking too good as it leaves a HUGE mess and the chain looks kinda dry after a while.
     
  11. Bikeguy Joe

    Bikeguy Joe Godfather of Motorized Bicycles

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    I use 10w30 when it looks like it needs some oil.

    The moving parts of our slow moving roller chains are pretty much self cleaning.
     
  12. wes

    wes New Member

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    I use some spray that the bike shop by my house sells, it is a chaine and cable lube that works great, i notice that there is a little build up of grease but nothing to worry about as the chaine never looks dry, i was using a motorcycle chaine wax, this stuff completely gunked up the chaine and i got a few stiff links and it was a pain in the *** to clean and free up the links, i think i had to apply to much of this stuff to keep the thing lubed well...
     
  13. pedal pusher

    pedal pusher Member

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    It was a week ago today I got my first bike build going for several passes up and down our short street. The clutch squealing and the chain noise and jerking was present, and I have been unable to correct things yet. I think I have adjusted the clutch but the chain is driving me nuts. I must have pushed the bike a quarter mile in the yard and the chain will tighten and slacken as it goes around. I think Jim at Creative Engineering said that sometimes the front sprocket can be the cause. It looks like everything is lined up as good as I can get it. :-||Has anyone else experience this and can recommend a cure, or a source for a replacement sprocket? I guess I am lucky as in spite of the chain I went into the street and was pedaling to start when I looked down and saw that the keeper on the master link was gone and the link was beginning to back out. I put everything back up and hope to get to Tractor Supply in a nearby town tomorrow for a #41 chain, tensioner, and spring.

    All tips and help much appreciated.

    D. J. aka (still) pedal pushin
     
  14. wes

    wes New Member

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    It sounds like your rear sproket is not centered around the hub, take the rim off the bike and put it in another bike or something that you can spin the rim in to look at the sproket from a side view, you sproket should not move up and down as the rim spins, if you take a moment and think about this you will relize that if the sproket is moving upand down it is also moving side to side causing the chain to tighten and then loosen. And make sure the master link clip is facing closed end forward while it rotates around the front sproket, Good Luck!!!
     
  15. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Ordered a #415 master link from spooky thurs, but tried a few dozen places local. I was asked many times; "You mean 410/420?" lol. Tried one last time and got this really cool guy on the phone. (He said he believed me there was such a thing then asked me for the pitch and pin size. I got so excited that I said I would be right down with the old master link. As I opened his front door there was a Whizzer hanging from the ceiling and a type of MC from about every decade from 1900 on and he was looking up #415. You could not walk in. He had to lean over the counter and pull the handle bars of one so I could get to the counter. After carefully measuring my ML, he went threw three 3 boxes. If the pitch was right, the pin size was not. on and on. Finaly he asked if I just needed the clip. I said Ayup. he opened box #4 measured and slapped one on. Fit perfect. (About wet my self. 3 day week-end and running out of ridding weather)
    dance1

    He asked for a buck. I handed him 5 and said have a beer or some thing. Thinking about it now, I should have left more. He worked dang hard for that one dollar.

    Got home, slapped some lithium grease on the chain and rode around town until dark. Gonna clean and lube chain tomorrow. Unless its nice out, snork

    Oh, his Whizzer is for sale. 1943 or 53 I think. will ask if any one is interested. Been there for years and in need of some TLC


    Yes! Wes is right Pedal. You really want both the rear sprocket and the clip to be right or can easily get you hurt. You also want to make sure you don't over tighten the rag-joint on your spokes. To remember proper clip direction I think of it as a lil rocket propelling the chain.
     
    #15 Dan, Oct 9, 2009
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2009
  16. 2door

    2door Moderator
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    "A little rocket propelling the chain" ......lol hahahaha, lol
    Only Dan could come up with that.....hahahaha.

    But wait....saaaaaaayyyyy, could that work? What if I attached a little rocket to each link then.....50 mph club, here I come!!!

    Tom
     
  17. xlite

    xlite New Member

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    The two are not related. "Up and down" due to off center sprocket is rare. Most common cause of tight/loose chain is uneven chain wear (they don't actually stretch).

    "Side to side" is caused by uneven tightening of rag joint and is most common cause of chain coming off along with uneven alignment of sprockets. This and the occasional "click" problem can also be minimized by filing teeth. "Click" tends to disappear on it's own as teeth wear.
     
  18. pedal pusher

    pedal pusher Member

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    Thanks to Wes and Dan and others. However, I don't have the rag joint as I have Jim's (Creative Engineering) sprocket and adapter on my Huffy bike. The chain is off the bike now and I have just given the rear wheel many fast spins and there is no up and down nor side to side movement of the sprocket that I can discern, even with this being a K-Mart bike with not a true rear wheel. I have done this befoe when I installed the sprocket and adapter and checked again just now to make sure. It is as true and it is going to ever be. I suspect the front sprocket so Jim, If you are listening, what do you think?

    I bought a new #41 chain today at Tractor Supply Co. in Monroe, NC, at a cost of $16.49 plus a whopping 8.5% sales tax. I hope this chain is much improved over the kit chain. I could not find the tensioner and spring mentioned by a forum member. I had the part numbers but no one in TSC knew what they were or where they were. That was the second visist to that TSC store. I stopped at Northern Hydraulics on the way home as I took a different route to do that. The same type chain (different name, both Chinese) was $12.99. Folks were on the floor and were helpful and friendly, unlike TSC. At Northern I found a chain breaker (Chinese of course) to repair 25 - 60 drive chain for $9.99; part # is 141232.

    I am apprehensive about the kit supplied tensioner but will try it just to see if I can get going again. A few passes up and down the street is really dangling the carrot to this old guy!

    Thanks to all,
    D. J.
     
  19. Dan

    Dan Staff
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    Really nice ride early this morning. Was gonna do the chain stuff after a coffee. Decided to take a quick ride to the carwash and clean the baby up some. Halfway there;
     

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  20. BarelyAWake

    BarelyAWake New Member

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    oooh - ouch, that sucks :(

    Did it jus happen? No warning?
     

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