How often do you clean your bike? Degrease? Lube?

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How often do you clean your bike? Degrease? Lube?
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Posted: Jul 17, 2020 at 10:02 Quote
I know an excellent rider who leaves his bike covered in mud and maybe adds some grease when things start squeaking. Some guys religiously clean, polish, degrease and re-grease, tune and keep their bikes in showroom condition.

I try to rinse the bike if it gets muddy to keep the crud from building up, and clean/grease the drivetrain every 10-20 rides or so.

Curious what everyone’s doing out there.

Posted: Jul 17, 2020 at 11:17 Quote
It really depends on the conditions. I like to keep my bikes clean, so they get washed after every muddy ride. At that point I also spray the drivetrain with degreaser, let it sit and wash off. Then relube. If it's not muddy, I do this every 5 or so rides. It my be overkill, but it keeps things clean, and makes me feel good. I also run the chain through a chain bath and do a thorough cleaning of the drivetrain (jockey wheels, cassette, etc) every probably 20-30 rides. It may be much, but I enjoy it, it makes me feel warm and fuzzy that I'm taking care of my bike, and I'm constantly asked if my bike is brand new (it is not haha...been ridden lots!).

Posted: Jul 17, 2020 at 13:13 Quote
After every muddy ride a light spray of water with hose and rub down frame with a sponge. Jet of spray on chain only, after that a spray of WD40.

Later that day I'll run the chain backwards through a clean rag, jockey wheels and chainring at the same time.

Starting at missing link drip lube links while running chain backwards again and leave to soak in then run the chain through a rag again to get rid of any visible excess lube.

On the rare occasions where bike doesn't get too dirty I won't wash it until the next muddy ride. Rub down and wipe cassette teeth every now and again.

Done it this way for years, down to a fine art and only takes around 15 minutes out of a day in total.
Rewards are a quiet, clean drivetrain every time I set off and hopefully longer before I need to replace worn out parts.

Posted: Jul 17, 2020 at 14:41 Quote
I just let the mud dry and knock it off.

I keep the moving bits in good working order and that's it.

Some people are "keep everything clean" people and some people are "keep everything working" people and some people are both...and I guess some people are neither.

I don't understand the "keep everything clean" people because our bikes are made to go off road and get dirty.

At the same time, anything mechanically not perfect on my bike drives me insane and I'm sure there are a lot of people who don't understand that. I'll spend endless hours to make everything exactly right mechanically and feel very happy when it is.

Posted: Jul 17, 2020 at 15:08 Quote
I wash my bike after every 2nd or 3rd ride, including a thorough scrub of the chain. (Obviously re-lube it at that time.) I'll usually spend a few minutes checking the torque on all the bolts or checking the true of my wheels too. I feel like I can catch any developments early that way and nip them in the bud.

Posted: Jul 17, 2020 at 17:02 Quote
Washing less than I used to. As soon as I notice the shifting starting to be affected, or a muddy or wet ride, the drivetrain gets cleaned, at most every 4 or 5 rides. Before every ride I wipe down all the stanchions with WD on a rag. Dried dirt/mud will ruin a seal in a hurry. Couple to few times a season I pull the linkage and clean and regrease. I used to keep the frame clean a lot more, but now I am not as concerned about the frame because it has been so wet for so long....and I am older with more sheet to do. Haha

Posted: Jul 18, 2020 at 13:30 Quote
I keep stanchions and drivetrain clean, the rest of the bike gets a wipe down whenever I feel like giving it some extra love. Degreasing and lubing schedule depends on conditions and products used.

Posted: Jul 20, 2020 at 0:05 Quote
Explodo wrote:
I just let the mud dry and knock it off.

I keep the moving bits in good working order and that's it.

Some people are "keep everything clean" people and some people are "keep everything working" people and some people are both...and I guess some people are neither.

I don't understand the "keep everything clean" people because our bikes are made to go off road and get dirty.

At the same time, anything mechanically not perfect on my bike drives me insane and I'm sure there are a lot of people who don't understand that. I'll spend endless hours to make everything exactly right mechanically and feel very happy when it is.

You basically saved me from a long writeup.
Thanks bro

Posted: Jul 20, 2020 at 0:16 Quote
Agree with above. Bikes are meant to be dirty, the moving bits need to be clean. My frame is only kept clean to stop the Wife nagging when it's in the kitchen! Smile

Posted: Jul 20, 2020 at 0:17 Quote
I'm always lubing up...keep everything lubed and it keeps the old gal quiet. Don't get too much on the shaft though or it attracts grit.

Posted: Jul 20, 2020 at 10:41 Quote
Definitely a helpful thread for me. I’ve always cleaned and regreased-relubed often mostly for fun but now that I’m riding like 5-6 days a week it’s turning to a necessity. Curious, how often are you tearing apart linkages to clean and regrease? Specifically on a lower link vpp bike if anyone has recommendations? I’ve been averaging probably once or twice a month

Posted: Jul 20, 2020 at 10:51 Quote
605endurbro wrote:
Definitely a helpful thread for me. I’ve always cleaned and regreased-relubed often mostly for fun but now that I’m riding like 5-6 days a week it’s turning to a necessity. Curious, how often are you tearing apart linkages to clean and regrease? Specifically on a lower link vpp bike if anyone has recommendations? I’ve been averaging probably once or twice a month

It is hard to compare time when riding frequency can be so different, as can conditions. I have been pulling my HTLT apart every few or so. I ride 2 to 4 times a week and often enough, it has been wet this year. What I am finding is the seals are doing a really good job at keeping gunk out of the inner workings and away from the bolt, bearings.

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