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Bicycle Tune-up/Cleaning Questions
#1
Ryan here, I’m averaging around 100-150 Miles every two weeks (commuter on a new Specialized Secteur). My questions are in regard to tune-ups / cleaning and frequency.

First – I was told not to use harsh cleaners on the bike. Is Noxon 7 (link below) considered “harsh?”

http://www.acehardware.com/product/index.jsp?productId=1418968

Second – Rumor also has it that waxing the bike (like you would a car) is a good idea for commuters. True? False?

Last – is there a good guide for what I should be doing Weekly? Monthly? Annually?

Every week I check tire pressure, and check the chain grease. I’m a dedicated commuter so rain won’t stop me (increasing the frequency of maintenance in Florida). I know that after a rain I need to pat everything dry, grease everything with the special lubricant (I believe silicone lubricant), and then use my special chain grease on the chain (all lubricants and grease are from my bike shop).

I’m not yet self-sufficient on repairing my bike, but I will be soon (rebuilding a junker or three). I appreciate the help and know I ask a lot. I just want to make sure I am taking the right steps.

Thanks, Ryan
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#2
I think there are too many variables to do things to a strict weekly/monthly etc. schedule. I generally just keep en eye on things and clean and lubricate etc. when I think it's necessary.

Wax polish is good for pretty much any paintwork as it helps protect it and fill any microscopic pores.

I don't use any detergents or solvents when I wash my bike, just a brush and cold water and if I rinse the bike with a hose, I avoid the bearings. I would never use a pressure washer unless I was going to strip the bike an re-grease the bearings.
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#3
The NOXON looks like a Metal Polish only. If I am correct you would only use it on bare metal products (non-painted). Car Wax, whatever your preference, is good for the painted areas. Now if you have non-painted aluminum cranks that stuff you linked to would work fine. Other then that xerxes said everything I would have Smile .
Good maintenance to your Bike, can make it like the wheels are, true and smooth!
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#4
Thanks to both of you. bucket of water and rag it is. Seriously, I really appreciate the advice.
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#5
I use a set of brushes to clean the bike, something like this:

[Image: 40762.jpg]

There are several cycle specific sets on the market, I think Park Tools do one, or you can probably find similar brushes for car and wheel cleaning at a car parts and accessories shop.
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#6
For road grime, I carefully use a kitchen degreaser (in those spray bottles) to clean portions of my bike. I spray the stuff on a cloth or towel, then wipe the bike. Never spray the bike (splatter may hit your drivetrain).

The kitchen cleaner really does good work on electrolyte preserved spots that have attracted dirt, sand, and road grime.
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#7
(08-13-2010, 01:11 PM)xerxes Wrote:  I use a set of brushes to clean the bike, something like this:

[Image: 40762.jpg]

There are several cycle specific sets on the market, I think Park Tools do one, or you can probably find similar brushes for car and wheel cleaning at a car parts and accessories shop.

The brush set you have are very nice to clean your bicycle with. Best I have seen really. Now you went and done it to me lol now I will have to go and get a set like that I can see it will make cleaning my bicycle a lot better. Thanks
My dad always told me a Sledge a matic can fix any thing.
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#8
I agree with Surly, xerxes that is a nice set of brushes. I already have Park's version though. But I would definitely consider these next time.
Good maintenance to your Bike, can make it like the wheels are, true and smooth!
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#9
I don't actually have that set, the ones I have are similar, perhaps not quite as nice, but they do the job.

The middle one is the most useful and if I were to buy just one, that's what I'd get.
  Reply
#10
Ryan,

I've never used Noxon but a polish is typically an abrasive so it removes layers of wax, grime and oxidation (rust) when used properly. So you should be careful using it, (in frequency and how). When used improperly it also removes clear coats, protective coats and paint.

As far as preventative maintenance, I posted something a while back. I was hesitant about posting it because everyone is different.

http://forums.bikeride.com/thread-1589.html

Waxing, yes I personally recommend anything that PROTECTS your paint, chrome, and aluminum alloys. Don't confuse it with POLISH (Noxon). Polish is for removing wax (abrasive). Most people though don't put in the best effort to get all the wax build-up removed though and after a while it starts looking bad around edges and crevices. But proper use of wax should help make your bike keep looking good for many more years. And a good wax will help make your bike easier to clean. Smile

Steve
Junkyard Tools rescued from the junkyard!
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#11
All appreciated advice. I've put the noxon back in the cabinet. After hearing the advice (and viewing a few videos) I went ahead and used a mild dish soap and a rag. After cleaning I dried it all down, and hit everything with the lubricants and greases etc. I even went so far as to ensure that I didn't over grease anything. All advice was/is appreciated. Thanks again... Although for the record... As a newbie I have a word of advice to all who care to listen. After a tune-up / deep clean... it will rain... sigh...
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#12
Just don't use my technique:

Clean chain and gears
Remove wheels
Meticulously clean white frame, saddle, and bar tape
Put rear wheel back on and get greasy handprints all over formerly clean white frame and bar tape
Reclean white frame and bar tape after wrestling match with rear wheel
Put front wheel back on.
Open a beer and wonder yet again why I didn't save myself the trouble and just buy a black bike! Big Grin

Patty
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#13
(08-17-2010, 03:51 PM)rbeggy Wrote:  I went ahead and used a mild dish soap and a rag.

I was told never to use washing up liquid, shampoo etc. for cleaning cars and bikes as it sometimes contains salt which may cause corrosion. They add salt to some detergents to act as a water softener, fine for hair and dishes, not so good for steel. Car shampoos/detergents don't contain salt.
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