Ask Pinkbike: Bike Cleaning, 32mm Stanchions, and Riding the Alps

Aug 4, 2015
by Pinkbike Staff  
Ask Pinkbike Header

Here at Pinkbike we get inundated with all kinds of questions, ranging from the basic "Can I have stickers" to more in-depth, soul searching types of queries like if you should pop the question or what to name your first child. Ask Pinkbike is an occasional column where we'll be hand picking and answering questions that have been keeping readers up at night, although we'll likely steer clear of those last two and keep it more tech oriented.





A Cleaning Shame

Question: Pinkbike user mandotwentysixer asked this question in the Bikes, Parts, and Gear forum: I went out for a ride today with the old man and our bikes got a little dirty but I haven't had time to wash them yet. I feel like the drivetrain is going to go bad in one night! Does anyone else feel this way when they don't wash their bike after a ride?

bigquotesI'll often ride my bike for months on end without giving it a thorough washing and I don't feel the slightest bit bad about it. All that dirt and mud stuck to your bike doesn't really hurt anything, and I look at it a lot like making your bed: you're just gonna unmake it again later that night, so why put it back together each morning? Hear me out before you accuse me of neglect, though, because there are a few things that I do after every ride that are much more important than waxing your frame and scrubbing the tires.

First thing I do after a ride, or at least an hour or two before the next time I head out, is to give the chain a quick wipe with a rag and a light re-lubing. I take a minute to spin the cranks around before wiping off any excess, and I'll also wipe off the pulley wheels and the chain ring's narrow / wide teeth - these are very prone to collecting debris and gunk. A quick run through the gears while checking the derailleur's limits and, less than five minutes later, you should be all done. I'll also give the fork and shock's dust wipers a quick cleaning, check the air pressure in my tires, and then walk away knowing that while my bike might still be covered in mud, it's going to be running just fine. The above routine is no replacement for a proper going over, though, as a rigorous cleaning can expose broken components that you might not see otherwise, and I can't argue that pulling out a shiny bike for a ride is a nice feeling.
- Mike Levy

Shimano 2015 XTR review test
  I'd give this drivetrain a good cleaning and lubing, but I'm much less likely to actually clean the rest of the bike.




Can a 32-millimeter Fork Take the Heat?

Question: Nakos asks in the All Mountain, Enduro & Cross-Country forum: I'm looking at possibly buying a 2016 Giant Trance 2 and was wondering if anyone had any input on the fork. It is a 2016 Fox Float 32 650b and has 140mm of travel. I'm a little unsure if the 32mm stanchions will be strong enough for my riding with the longer travel fork. I'm 5'10 and 150lbs, so weight isn't much of an issue. I currently have a hardtail that I ride on somewhat rocky single track and I like to take it fairly fast. The trails I usually ride also have a assortment of jumps and drops that I hit (no more than 3 - 4 ft. tall). The 2016 Trance has a decent build for the price and I like the Maestro suspension, but I have some reservations on the fork.


bigquotesGood question. Before lightweight forks were made available with stiffer lowers and 34 or 35 millimeter stanchion tubes, the Fox 32 Float was the weapon of choice for almost every mid-travel mountain bike. While it is a fact that your potential purchase would steer more precisely and hold its line better in exceptionally rough terrain if it was wearing a Fox 34 or RockShox Pike, the Fox 32 has been trusted for over a decade to deliver the goods for hard-charging trail riders. I rode a Pivot Mach 5.7 for a number of years which had a 26-inch-wheel 150-millimeter-stroke Fox Float 32. It saw some intense action throughout the Southwest and is still pumping without a complaint.

Finally, Giant uses a separate, in-house testing facility to qualify all of its OEM components before committing them to production. This doubles the safety factor, because their testing is in addition to the rigorous spanking that Fox puts its forks through at its own testing laboratory. If you can live with a small amount of flex, I wouldn't sweat it. - RC


Richard Cunningham riding near San Diego
The Pivot Mach 5.7's 150mm-stroke, Fox 32 fork, was a staple of the long-travel trailbike revolution until the stiffer and more substantial Fox 34 and RockShox Pike arrived on the scene.




Lone Wolf?


Question: Pinkbike user cjkj1999 asked this question in the Downhill Forum: Hi, I'm going to the Alps (Morzine / Les Gets) in a few days with my family. They mostly do XC, but I do DH, what should I do about riding alone? Is it best to ride with someone? Any advice is welcome.


bigquotesRiding solo won't be an issue, there's plenty of people to ride with in Les Gets and Morzine, just hang around the Pleney or Chavannes lifts and get chatting, you're sure to make new friends quickly. If you haven't been to the area before, you should find a relaxed vibe and plenty of folks willing to show you the latest 'secret track.' If nobody wants to be your friend just stick to the main marked trails, if anything untoward does happen, you're likely to be scraped off the floor quickly by a fellow rider due to the sheer volume of people on the mountain. Of course, always take a phone and basic First Aid equipment, and tell people where you are heading and what time you plan to be home. When giving an ETA to arrive back at base, you should bear in mind you will be having the time of your life and a legendary post-ride Mutzig at Bar Robinsons with new buddies will make you at least 2-3 hours late for dinner. - Paul Aston

MTB Morzine Beds Latest Crew Member
  Local hero Lyle can always be found shredding the Pleney, at 6' 10" he's also easy to spot.




Have some unresolved tech questions? Jump in the Pinkbike Forum and we'll look to answer it for next time.


128 Comments

  • 170 10
 Riding dh in a park alone has its advantages .... U dont have to wait for anybody, u can fall and nobodys going to laugh, and u can get off track and get baked without anybody busting ur balls
  • 50 1
 I thought the best part was riding with some buddies and once you fall you all get to laugh your ass off.
  • 9 1
 Or teasing them because they scream like a little girl!
  • 20 0
 The best part about riding alone is when you flat and you realize that you never carry tire levers with you because your one buddy always carries aluminum ones.
  • 10 1
 Most of the time i ride alone in Morzine / Chatel area. And it suck. Not only it is great to ride with buddies, but you also shape your skills much more faster. Riding alone, there is not simply someone to push the limits and try something new... which sometimes doing alone, can be a bit tricky.
  • 17 0
 buddy #1 "hey everyone wait for me I have to tie my shoe."
buddy # 2 five minutes later: "hey everyone wait for me I have to take a leak"
buddy #3 five minutes later "hey everyone wait for me I have to adjust my gopro"
gets old really quick. riding solo ftw
  • 2 0
 @mrgonzo I feel You, man.Just happened, in that exact order Smile
  • 2 1
 it depends on the group you ride with. When it's to heterogenous in riding skills and preferences it will be not that much fun especially if there are too many people. When I just ride with one or two guys who are below or beyond my level it is ok if the other riders are ok with it too. But the most fun imho is to ride with people you click with and are on a simliar skill set preferably a bit beyond me so that they can push me a bit without talking me into trying that huge roadgap although I'm not ready for it. Riding alone has its pros too though: no pressure, riding at my own pace is safer most of the time and I usually do more laps when I'm on my own in the bikepark...
  • 2 0
 I love to do a bit of both if I can. Solo outings and groups. At the end of the day last time I went solo, I ended making a friend who talked me into following him and hitting the road gap I had never done before. "Its easy" he said. Who am I to argue with that? I didn't want to look like a wuss... For some reason I am more capable of talking my way out of something with a friend than with a total and complete stranger.
  • 1 0
 I always ride alone and love it.... gives me all the freedom i love about mountain biking.
  • 1 0
 I usually ride alone and I can push my limits pretty easily that way. I just really make an effort to get out of my comfort zone. Unfortunately I have crashed a lot doing that so it's always a good idea to have some bandages and tape to at least hold myself together before I make it to the hospital
  • 67 2
 My time at Queenstown tells me that chairlifts/gondolas are basically mtb speed dating
  • 5 1
 So true. In 3 weeks I met lots and lots of great people on that gondola.
  • 17 1
 Also Mike Hopkins is a really nice humble guy. Didn't realise it was him until I got off and my friend's jaw dropped.
  • 9 2
 Are we talking about girls here?
  • 17 0
 bikes dude, bikes.
  • 23 1
 While we're on the subject of cleaning...let's say your outdoor cat got closed inside your garage overnight and pissed on your wheel/rim. How long before I should worry that the smell hasn't subsided and what chemicals would be safe to use? Of course this never happens at my house, on numerous occasions.
  • 6 3
 my assh**e cat peed on my gloves and i thought they were ruined. Soaked them 1/2 vinegar/warm water then washed them in the machine, then air dried for a day and the smell is all gone.
  • 43 1
 i just like the sound of "warburrito". props for the name!
  • 2 1
 We keep a laundry hamper in our garage for bike clothes and our cat snuck in and pissed all over it last year. Soaked in apple cider vinegar for a bit, then threw in the wash with some baking soda, the normal detergent, and a little more vinegar and they came out smelling right as rain. Vinegar isn't that harmful -- it'll be fine to use on your bike.
  • 3 1
 They put vinegar in window cleaner, it works a treat. Healthy sorts use applecider vinegar to help 'clean' their systems. True story.
  • 5 0
 Funny you should say that. Was about to take the dog for a ride earlier and I realised the cat was stuck in the storage area in the eaves of the garage. Eventually managed to cram the poor guy into an old bikediscount.de box which he then punched his way out of. He's been traumatised since. I have too, I was going to use that box.
  • 30 3
 So what I'm reading is that the best solution is to use the cat piss as an excuse to buy new clothes, dunk your cat in vinegar, and get a dog. Thanks for the advice!
  • 4 1
 cat peed on my entire moto bag full of gear. didn't realize it til I got to the trail and rode with my full face helmet stinking so bad my eyes watered. couple rounds of fabreze and spraying with the hose solved the problem. I never did clean my helmet though.
  • 23 2
 Cats. They don't care about a damn thing but themselves and they suck at running trails.
  • 3 1
 cleaning kills bearings really fast especially if you use a pressure washer
  • 2 1
 Never realised cats hated bike kit so much, another reason to stick to dogs...
  • 4 0
 Really? Bet you've never ridden through catshit.
  • 2 2
 Saying that a dirt covered bike doesn't do any harm is just plain wrong. Think about it.. These bikes consist of many moving parts which are accompanied by bearings. The watery consistency of mud can easily work its way into the pivots of the bike and although bearings are designed to be resistant towards this environment, they will surely break down and allow this mucky shit to eventually work into the bearings. If I were the editor of this article, I would recommend one to just simply hose off the bike after use. It takes like 2 minutes... Get a light spray from the hose and just flush out all the mud from the small, hard to reach spots. That being said, don't blast your bike with a pressure washer. With your bike propped up however way tickles your fancy, simply back pedal the cranks and apply water to the drivetrain which will rid of mud and dirt from places such as chain, pulleys, cogs, etc. Then, either let your bike sit in the sun for 15 minutes to dry, or simply bounce the bike off the ground to rid of excess water, and take a rag to the chain to ensure it does not rust.
  • 1 0
 my dog does this on my wheel/rim. Usually I just take my bike and go for a ride among mud and rain... it works fine . Has worked for a couple of years.
  • 3 0
 the only thing i know of that wizzes on their own bikes are triathletes
  • 3 0
 Water presses dirt past the seals on bearings and hubs, environmental conditions and or air does not. Water will make dirt go where you cannot see....but it takes it a while to get there on its own. Use a moist rag to wipe the dirt off...unless its covered in mud then you can only hose it...hosing a bike every time is the number one way to accelerate the degradation of bearings and moving parts...sorry....
  • 1 0
 Hot tip of the day right here.

The best way to clean your bike is with some soapy water in a sprayer, a brush and a rag. Spray the bike down and wipe away excess dirt, taking some time to clean tight spots with the brush. This will limit the amount of water and dirt you are flushing through your bearings/pivot points. I pull the whole bike down about once a year or after a weekend of some hard use, just to check all the important bits. Good idea to do this with a couple of buddies and some beers.

Keep your sh!t maintained your LBS will appreciate your efforts to maintain your gear and will go out of their way to help you with any issues that may arise.
  • 1 0
 Good bearings will have a dust cover and seal that will protect minimal amounts of water that may reach the bearing surface. And since it is post-ride, the bike has time to dry and therefore the few drips of water affects the bearing very minimally. And it's pretty easy to repack a bearing now and then. My take on the whole situation is that I would rather spend literally about 1 minute to get a clean bike than throw it back up on the stand after a long ride. And I get 2+ seasons out of all my bearings riding hard 60+ mi per week. That being said, with the dry weather in the PNW, the last time I did any real cleaning other than a quick wipe was probably spring.
  • 23 1
 Not cleaning dirt off your bike actually improves the finish because it blocks oxidation and UV damage. Just kidding.
  • 3 0
 "All that dirt and mud stuck to your bike doesn't really hurt anything"

Try to tell these guys that Mike:
www.pinkbike.com/u/urteam/blog/must-watch--dust-apocalypse.html
  • 1 0
 That is all dry dirt that will fly off the bike on your next ride.
  • 1 0
 PhattyMatt I like this theory, I am going to spread it all over.
  • 18 0
 My bikes clean my kit is brand new!
  • 8 0
 I'm slow so I don't have to bother with cleaning
  • 2 1
 IFHT
  • 16 1
 Want to ride in France? Do not forget to send me a message if I can help (advice, translation, other friends mail...) :-)
  • 14 0
 I live in an apartment with my bicycles. They're better roommates when they're clean.
  • 2 0
 Same.
  • 4 0
 Yeah my girlfriend lets me keep 5 bikes in our tiny apartment, but if they're covered in mud that changes pretty quickly.
  • 2 0
 Yeah, no way my wife will let me keep a bike with caked on mud in our apartment...
  • 11 0
 Did they rotate that photo to make it look steeper?
  • 7 0
 Definitely give your bike a good wash if you have a *BAD creak* you can't diagnose. Eliminate frame cracks first. Just speaking from experience.
  • 6 0
 You know what matters more than a 32mm stanchion? Riding your bike. Skill and line choice are 99% of your ride. 32mm vs 34mm=0.5%
  • 3 0
 I understand the advantages of the larger stanchions and don't think they are bad, but looking back over the years I have been serous about mountain biking (started in 1991) makes me chuckle at how there has always been semi solutions looking for real problems. But that is what keep the industry moving forward. However on the other hand look at where the sport is now and what the top level riders are doing as opposed just 10 years ago...
  • 4 1
 For that guy asking about the trance 2, You'll be fine if you want to ride it on advanced tracks. I have a 2014 trance 3 and I ride it hard, I have some pretty quick strava times and even 1 KOM. They can handle a thrashing quite easily, I've even sent an 11 meter gap on mine.
  • 1 0
 I put a 150mm factory team float 34 on my x1. Problem solved. Best upgrade that bike has gotten
  • 1 0
 Years ago I did every double black at Whistler on a Fox 32 (2007 Giant Reign). Of course I would have preferred a bigger fork, but, like Josh says, a 32 will handle it.
  • 30 0
 Wow! A KOM you say??!!!!
  • 14 0
 get in line for autographs here guys!
  • 3 0
 As someone said, it depends on the specific fork. In my experience as a 200 lb rider, longer-travel 32mm stanchion trail forks are too flexy. I am happy with a 36 for trail riding. Remember also that it depends on how hard you push. A lot of seasoned riders ride much more casually than some younger, more "inexperienced" riders. Those seasoned riders might tell you that a fork doesn't flex, and another might tell you about how they bent it in a berm. Take advice from the riders that ride trails like you ride and the speeds that you ride. Easy way to do that without a bunch of riding buddies trying stuff for you; watch races. If you ride like the XC guys, buy what they like/ride. If you ride more like Enduro racers, then emulate them. If you ride slower, you can probably scale back. Also, props to the guy that hit a 30' gap on a trance. I assume he didn't case it or he wouldn't have a Trance anymore.
  • 1 1
 @IamZOSO no strava lines needed ????
@erikkellison I'm also a light rider, I weigh around 140lbs or 65kg (think I got the lbs wrong) I've never had a problem with bent forks, had no problems with my forks, ever. Even pinning down our local jumps track which is rough as f*ck, they still handle it fine. Oh and yes, didn't case the gap.
  • 3 0
 I have GT with I-drive.... If I don't clean those pivots after a muddy ride it'll be creaking for weeks... Also cleaning the bike after you ride helps you spot any damage you otherwise might have missed... I can't say I agree 100% with Levy on this one, especially if you're riding a complex FS with loads of pivots
  • 2 0
 my friends ask me why my bike is still dirt. I say it was just washed, yes it has mud here and there but i wash and lube all components.... it is a fucking mountain bike, it gets even prettier with a bit of mud all over it. IT IS A MOUNTAIN BIKE!!!!!
  • 2 1
 Is there any standard reference guide on bike maintenance available out there? E.g. When headset needs to be cleaned/lubed, when hub should be serviced, when pivots should be cleaned/lubed, etc?

Does everyone just follow mfg recommendations?

I'm always cleaning rear mech pulleys/lubing any moving parts, cleaning fork and shock stanchions etc, but am at a loss as to when to attend to the balance of the major parts. (Assuming you arent experiencing any issues)
  • 3 1
 I do it once a year whan I can't ride but I want to touch my bike anyway. Cleaning every pivot, checking if they roll well or not, and I forget them for another year.
  • 4 17
flag Kainerm (Aug 4, 2015 at 13:16) (Below Threshold)
 to be honest, just forget about it. If there is any undue play, check it. If something feels stiff, check it. Otherwise, go and ride your bike. I for one don't put ANY care into my chain - no cleaning, no lube, no nothing. If you start lubing that thing, the dirt will just start sticking to it - and then you're in trouble. Of course, this only applies to higher quality chains that don't simply rust when they aren't oiled heavily. Same for suspension and brakes - don service the parts too often, just listen and look for the signs of wear and tear - if they show up, it is due for a servicing. It is not like mountainbikes are highly complicated machines, at the heaert of it all of them are very low maintenance - we just tend to overdo it.
  • 4 2
 Yeah I'm about the same way. I'm
Just hyper sensitive to preventative maintenance on my AM bike ('15 nomad) since I splurged and spent so much on the damn thing, want to take good care of it.
  • 3 2
 To each their own.
  • 5 0
 Whenever I get bored I work on my bike so I'd say everything (brakes, linkage, headset, shock, fork... Etc.) gets redone at least every 3 months. I know it's very excessive, but spending time with my bike caring for it and figuring out how everything works is how I like to spend my time. Once one thing comes apart, the whole frame might as well be in pieces for me!
  • 3 0
 I was talking to the guy that lets his chain get as dry as a 80 year old fur burger
  • 6 0
 @Kainerm your way of "maintaining" your bike is doing harm rather than good. Anywhere your bike has metal to metal contact it should be lubricated. In the case of the chain, no lube leads to a louder drivetrain and means you will have to replace your chain, cassette, and chainring(s) sooner than you would otherwise. Also, a quality lube applied correctly will attract minimal dirt. As for brakes and suspension, preventative maintenance is key. The biggest sign of wear and tear on your suspension is scarring of the stanchions on your fork, which is caused by never replacing old dust wiper seals and never putting in fresh oil. Once your stanchions are scarred, your fork isn't due for a servicing, it needs new stanchions and a complete rebuild. Not bleeding your brakes fairly regularly can allow the old fluid to wear down seals in the caliper and at the lever, which could cause your brakes to fail completely. This would require a complete rebuild of the caliper/lever or the replacement of the brake system. Never doing anything now will cost you in the long run, it's cheaper to bleed your brakes 3 times over 3 years than to never do it and have to buy a new set if they fail. Repair bills will go up and the performance of your bike will go down if you neglect to give it the service that it needs.
  • 2 1
 And cleaning/maintaining the hell out of your bike is how you find loose parts and cracked bits, as Mike alludes to.

If you have sponsorship, you should also present your bike (and yourself) beautifully. And if you want sponsorship, you need to do the same.
  • 4 9
flag Kainerm (Aug 4, 2015 at 21:19) (Below Threshold)
 Jduncan2124: every kind of lube attracts gobs of dirt, that is just the way lube works - they are based on liquid friction, which implies liquid. Well, except for graphite and talcum, but they are not suitable for bike Chains. And you know what is funny? Even though my drivetrain is running completely dry, it is not showing any signs of undue wear and tear - rather, LESS wear than other bikes with more "care". Because chains do not need to be lubricated! The way a bike chain works is fascinating - they are full of moving parts, but none of them move under Stress. Whenever there is relative movement between parts, there is no force - but you need both at the same time to cause wear. What you do with oil on a chain is create polishing paste - which wears out the sprockets and the chain links. The chain is not meant to move on the sprockets, so increased friction actually is a bonus.
As for your other points: When your suspension has scars, it is already damaged and in for quality repair, that is obvious. Usually crash related, not maintenance. Old wipers don scar, they leak. Wipe the dirt off the seals, that is it. Don't lube the stanchions, because that will actually introduce dirt into the fork. They are lubed internally!
Old brake fluid does not wear out seals, its boiling point gets lower. Does not cause wear. Clean the pistons when replacing the pads and you're set.
Clean your bike after every ride and youre certainly going to replace all the bearings by the end of the year. Clean them lightly, and only when it is realy dirt, and they will last years.

Look at it like this: how often do you service your car? After every ride? Most parts of a car do not get ANY service EVER. What you really have to do is clean the air filter and swap the oil/fuel filter plus engine oil, maybe also check the brake fluid. Everything else? Replace when worn/broken. Why should I replace the fluid in my Bike suspension every 50 hours of riding (FOX manual recommendation) when the shock absorbers in my car last for at least 5000 hours?

Iamamodel: I agree, if you're a sponsored athlete, perfect appearance is part of the deal, and you can probably afford to over-maintain and thus prematurely wear out your bike.
  • 9 0
 If you ride your bike the same way you drive your car, then there's no reason to maintain anything because it's not being pushed anywhere its limits. If you actually drive your car to its limits, you would have a lot more maintainence to do. Same with a bike. if you're going to compare cars to bikes, at least understand that your average commuter car/truck is the equivalent to a Kmart bike. It gets you from point A to B. If you don't push it hard, it'll keep working. The second you do is when the maintainence becomes an issue.

P.S. If your chain isn't under stress, you should stop looking at your bike and go ride it.
  • 1 0
 ProjectRC is making good points. Why do you think zerk fittings exist? I beat the piss out of my Jeep and almost every oil change I grease all of zerks. Have you ever seen or felt a worn out ball joint? There's a reason you have a lubricant or medium between 2 metal surfaces. Have you ever cleaned a gun? My shotgun is greased and lubed more often than a pornstar
  • 1 2
 does a bicycle fire of lead bullets with gunpowder?
  • 4 3
 I find the dirty bike, promotes more dirt to stick to it. Considering the cost of these things, parts, drivetrains, I keep it clean. My mechanic also appreciates me taking care of his/my bike. I also like to ride alone, of course at my own peril.
  • 9 1
 So you are the alone trail guy with the shiney clean bike who has "his" mechanic wrench on it?
  • 2 1
 Funny, did that not read correctly. I take care of my bike. When my local bike shop gives me a lot of free service. I try to not waste his time by cleaning my bike.
  • 1 0
 Re: Cleaning bikes & parts. Does anyone know the effect that soil with a low pH (higher acidity) has on bike materials? Or is it a non-factor? I know that areas with higher rainfall have soils that are more acidic & always wondered if leaving a bike dirty could eventually compromise the material. Just curious.
  • 1 0
 This is actually a good point. I repair/ weld aluminum irrigation pipe, and I see it oxidizing all the time. It could be from the water but it could be from the dirt. If you had a raw aluminum frame it would take years of no washing for it to possibly oxidizing depending on the pH of the soil you ride in. You're probably fine lol
  • 5 0
 But if you ever get pigeon shit on your bike, get if off pronto.
  • 11 0
 Or any kind of shit, really.
  • 1 0
 or any gels. we get roadies bringing their bikes in for service, and its really hard, if not impossible to get dried gels off the frame.
  • 6 2
 32mm feel like wet noodles. Cleaning your bike is just as important as riding it.
  • 5 1
 I'm glad you said that first sentence but I hear the second one in my mothers voice! Guilty conscience I guess..
  • 1 0
 cleaning your bike is important, after about 25 - 30 km I come home get a cold Bud get the bike stand in the yard with the water hose,my pail and chain cleaner and start cleaning, when thats done (second beer now) dry bike off,lube chain admire clean bike check tire pressure.This is my routine,along with some great tunes playing. All ready for the next ride. Keep in mind I live in a sandy (beach sand) area so when it is dry, lot more sandy areas.Thats why I clean,plus my bike is worth more then my car.
  • 1 0
 stanchion size isn't the only factor- i have an original pike and a manitou sherman, and they both have 32mm stanchions (and 20mm axles...) and are plenty stiff for their applications. Newer 32mm forks tend to be lighter and flimsier than those, though.
  • 1 0
 Two things: 1) SC says not to clean your bike. They posted a blog about a study they did amongst their own employees and how much maintenance their bikes needed and the correlation with bike washing. 2) Are you really supposed to lube your chain after every ride? I do it like every ten rides when i feel its getting dry and my chains last a good long time, rarely breaking.
  • 2 0
 Water is evil. I rode a week in pisgah and it's was raining a little every day and that alone pretty much seized my brand new hub bearings and made my headset crunchy. I don't even want to imagine how much damage regular washing does. I just brush off the dried mud and wipe the bike with a damp rag.

I lube the chain when it starts to be noisy, which is about once every 5 rides or so. Some lubricants last longer than others. Finish line's teflon/ceramic wax ones seem to only last 2-3 rides while their "wet" formula lasts longer but it becomes all gunky as everything sticks to it.

You're supposed to wipe your chain and relube it after you've ridden in the wet/mud.
  • 11 0
 I lube my chain whenever I can start to hear it when pedaling.
  • 2 1
 If youre worried about strength of a fork study simple piping. Larger diameter pipes are stronger and less flexible than smaller diameters. In order to make a stronger smaller diameter the material thickness has to increase adding more weight. Thats how the Fox 40 is one of the lightest dh forks yet is also the most burly. Same thing aplys to frames.
  • 1 1
 I really think that stanchion size is dependent on the size of drops or speed you're hitting rock gardens. If your drops are more than 6ft, go 35mm+ or if you are hitting rock gardens at 20+ mph. Other than that, a nice revelation will do just fine.
  • 2 0
 "a legendary post-ride Mutzig at Bar Robinsons with your new buddies will make you at least 2-3 hours late for dinner..." and abusive, be prepared for carnage!
  • 1 1
 A Fox 32 150mm is a tough fork. Mine was flexy as hell but handled lots of DH type abuse and crashes no problem at all.

The faster you ride the more you need to clean and maintain your bike. I have noticed that my chain loses its lube far quicker than my wife's bike. I think its because I ride faster and kick more dirt up under braking and cornering leading to the lube being shed. More dirt on my frame too. At least thats my theory on why my bike gets dirtier than hers :-)
  • 2 0
 its really easy to know when you will arrive back after mutzig...robbos closes about 7ish, big question is whether you stop at mummas for munchies!
  • 1 0
 32s can ride anything even in 140mm. They aren't super stiff or plush but they won't let you down. It is hard to go back to 32s once you have tried something like a pike though
  • 2 1
 Look for the secret track to your right while on the chavannes lift it's boss, about half way down off the red route you cut off to your left before the jump, pure grin ????
  • 3 1
 Clean bike? What's that?
I thought we rode bikes design for offroad use. It's a Moutain Bike, it's supposed to be dirty.
  • 2 1
 I had the exact same question about the rockshox revelation. Thanks a heap!
  • 8 0
 Not to try to confuse the issue, but it's probably worth mentioning that the trance 2 has a 1.7 degree slacker head angle than the mach 5.7, & that's going to place more lateral force on the fork.

FWIW, I've noticed more bushing bind on slacker HA bikes, & bigger stanchions help that in two ways: stiffer to resist bending, & more surface area to glide through the bushings more smoothly.

Trouble is, other factors are at play too, for instance, are the stanchions on newer 32s using a thicker wall, or a stiffer alloy? They might.
  • 2 1
 ^ this guy.
  • 4 0
 Always felt the Revelation to be stiffer than the Fox 32.
@groghunter is right. Simple physics. Slacker head angles put more binding forces on telescopic forks. Enough to worry? I don't know.
  • 2 1
 Hey Levy! If that's a large 29er, give it to me and I'll guarantee you that the only time it's that filthy is during a ride.
  • 1 0
 @WAKIdesigns that's the biggest load of rubbish I've ever read... Are you trolling?
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