Time has come again to replace the chain.

What do you look for when replacing a chain??

The bike gets used in all weathers, is stored outside day and night, is exposed to all weathers, gets soaked at work (when it's raining)

What type of OIL to use??  

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Hardcore bike and chain - have you consider after market chainguards ? 

My go-to for chains are all the different variants of KMC, they come with quick links. Use them on all my bikes when I change the chains. It sounds like you'll want the Rust Buster version.

Oil / lube - Finish Line 1-Step Cleaner & Lube is my go to choice for just about every moving part on my bike these days (that doesn't explicitly demand grease) , but I'm sure that there are better choices.

I've used parrafin wax for my chains. Stops then getting black and convered in junk.

Wow, is that picture for real?
That's Extreme shininess for 400 miles.

Care to share your own picture after several rides in brutal Sydney conditions Robflyte?

not really. If you read one of the links to the 1st post on this from ecovelo it tells you to clean the rest of the drivetrain.

I used a new chain (= dirt accumulator) then did the wax thing on the chain. But I didn't clean the rest fo the drive train so now I have a super shiny chain and the cassette is still filthy. Did a 200 on the weekend with the waxed chain, works really well.

All my other chains are due for a cooking so I'll try and clean the rest of the drive train this time around.

The great part of a clean chain is that when you get a puncture and you need to remove the wheel, handling the chain doesn't give you black fingers.

Well, I'm a sucker for shiny, clean chains and drive chain - does this help with jockey wheels (they are the weak link in my opinion)  as well?  

Hoping you do a followup post on the wax cooking method after a couple more Audaxs!

will do Peter. I'll do a cook and clean tomorrow and let you know how it goes.

The jockey wheels stay clean, is that what you mean?

No way!, jockey wheels never stay clean! 

They all come with inbuilt gravitational pull to anything remotely resembling muck, if wax can contain that like some sort of Faraday Cage , I'm going to be trawling vinnies/salvos for a crockpot!

Trangia and an old milo tin. Keep the lid so you can reseal the unused wax and then just  reheat when needed.

And the trangia stove comes in handy when you want to make coffee on a long ride.
I also use a trangia and an old tin. Outside is the best place for the job anyway.

Pat the Rat,

I don't know what bike or drive chain you're riding but in my experience paying a bit more for a higher quality chains is definitely worth it particularly because you can get them so cheap these days. I run Ultegra 9/10/11 speed chains on most of my bikes and I'm fastidious with cleaning and lubrication so I get a lot of miles out of them. Even if I wasn't I'd still run a higher quality chain as it would be much more resistant to corrosion. Many years ago, a mechanic did a corrosion test dumping chains in salt water to see how they'd change over several weeks. Here are the results

I'm not even gong to enter the lube debate. Whatever type of lube you use, follow the instruction on the bottle and clean and reapply when necessary. Most of the problems people have are due to neglect not the type of lubricant they use. If your bike is parked outside I'd try to get a rain cover for it.

I use 10 speed Dura-Ace chain and Chain-L No.5 oil.

The surface finish on the DA chain is better IMO than the lesser Shimano chains. It has a durable chrome type surface that cleans nice and shiny. I think it would take some determined abuse to make it actually rust!

And as for lube, my absolute fave is the Chain-L No.5 - It's very thick and sticky and smells of heavy industrial gearboxes! No schmancy green biodegradable shit in there at all!

It's very thick and doesn't run easily, specially in winter. I heat water in a saucepan and float the Chain-L bottle in there and heat it to around 70-80 deg.

While it's heating I scrub the chain, cassette and rings clean with a brush, inside and out. Then polish with rags till I can't see any junk left anywhere and it's all nice and shiny. Then apply the hot oil in thin streams while turning the cranks. Cover both sides of the chain and inside and outside. Keep turning the cranks over to work the oil into the links. The get the rags again and wipe off as much oil as you can. Keep turning and wiping till the rag stays pretty much clean.

Job done.

I wipe the chain down after every ride or two, specially if it wet, and top up with fresh hot oil about every fortnight. I do a big thorough clean maybe every 2 months or so.

Works for me.

Last time I changed chain and cassette I has almost no stretch/wear after 4,000km.

I use RnR blue on anything that I plan on riding in the rain or dirt (basically, my CX/Commuter, audax and MTBs). Gold on the roadie. Blue seems to survive a rainy day, but I reapply after a wet ride anyway. Gold... I'd probably carry some with me on a 200km+ ride if it looked like rain as it would probably get washed off. You need to apply more often (basically, I clean bike and apply after every rainy/dirty ride), but the lube cleans as you apply it, so it's a bit less time consuming than removing and keroing it.

When I was commuting every day I used to use Weldtite tf2 extreme. A small bottle will last a long time. Very dirty, but does the job as a lube in the wet probably better than RnR, meaning it doesn't wash off as easily. More convenient if you don't mind a dirty chain and doing a proper clean of the chain every now and then (~500-1000km for me).

In summary, RnR is more expensive, requires more regular application, but less intensive cleaning of chain.


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