A good, easy way to clean a chain!

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1/13/2018 6:27 PM

So after riding around for a bit today... there was alot of pine needles and dirt all over the paths while riding to a few parks today, and I just cleaned and relubed my chain the other day, and today I got back and my chain was FULL of dirt and just junk. So here is how I cleaned it tonight... I'll put it in steps to make it easy...

Step 1. Take your chain off the bike.
Step 2. Get an empty platic water bottle, fill it maybe 1/8th 1/4th full of WD40.
Step 3. Put the chain in the water bottle and shake the bottle for a bit.
Step 4. When you see that the dirt and gunk is off the chain, remove the chain from the bottle.
Step 5. Put chain on a paper towl or some carboard, then using an air compressor blow the excess WD40 (if you don't have an air compressor, you can just hang the chain to dry for a bit. Using an air compressor just speeds up the process.)
Step 6. Put back on bike and use a proper chain lube on it.
Step 7. Go ride your bike with a nice clean chain!

This is just the process I use, I'm sure you guys may do something different, but this is super easy, took me about 20-25 minutes, and it's cheap to do, and this process is super effective! So go clean your dirty chains!laughing grin

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I don't crash, I do random gravity checks...

1/13/2018 6:46 PM

I use automatic transmission for my chain. (It doesn't get dirty like if you used engine oil..)

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1/13/2018 6:55 PM

Brake cleaner spray with a rag below it... Spray to clean. Then, use whatever lube you like to lubricate.

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1/13/2018 7:31 PM

Mishinn_Control wrote:

Brake cleaner spray with a rag below it... Spray to clean. Then, use whatever lube you like to lubricate.

Yep. That Brakeleen stuff, or however you spell it works too. I had some, I should probably pick up some more, but I used WD40 becasue that's what I had, and I feel more people have WD40 at their homes than Brakeleen... but you may know, I race motocross as well, so that's why I have Brakeleen, otherwise I probably wouldn't have it lol

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I don't crash, I do random gravity checks...

1/13/2018 7:47 PM
Edited Date/Time: 1/13/2018 7:48 PM

Stop using wd40 guys it has kerosine in it and is not really a lube or protection, but for water displacent. Use a three in one oil or a chainlube for dirt bikes....

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1/13/2018 7:51 PM

BcBMX80 wrote:

Stop using wd40 guys it has kerosine in it and is not really a lube or protection, but for water displacent. Use a three in one oil or a chainlube for dirt bikes....

I'm not using WD40 as a lube... I'm using it as a drgreaser, then I use the air compressor to get alot of it out, then I let it hang and dry the rest out for about 10-15 mins... I use actuall chain lube to lube my chains, not WD40.

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I don't crash, I do random gravity checks...

1/13/2018 8:04 PM

Mishinn_Control wrote:

Brake cleaner spray with a rag below it... Spray to clean. Then, use whatever lube you like to lubricate.

brake cleaner (however it's actually spelled) works amazing for stuff like this.


This method is how I used to clean my chain, it worked well. But I didn't have access to an air compressor, I just wiped it off and used an old tooth brush to scrub it

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1/13/2018 8:21 PM

Mishinn_Control wrote:

Brake cleaner spray with a rag below it... Spray to clean. Then, use whatever lube you like to lubricate.

sundaybmxRR wrote:

brake cleaner (however it's actually spelled) works amazing for stuff like this.


This method is how I used to clean my chain, it worked well. But I didn't have access to an air compressor, I just wiped it off and used an old tooth brush to scrub it

Yes. Scrubbing it with a tooth brush works too... I just shook mine for a bit in the water bottle then used my air compressor on it and got the rest of the junk off! This method works awesome!

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I don't crash, I do random gravity checks...

1/13/2018 8:30 PM
Edited Date/Time: 1/13/2018 8:31 PM

I just hose the shit out of it and regrease like 3 times a year, you don't actually want a lot of grease or oil on shit as stuff just sticks to it and grinds into your parts, just a wee protective coat every few months will do. Still that black paste that devolops over the years is brutal, I like the water bottle shake idea hondacfr, in a solution of water and simple green. Simple green will kill grease fast, I use it to shampoo my engines on my rides. Just don't dilute it and let it soak for a few. Smells minty too! I think you can buy a chain cleaner from park but I don't think that's nessacary...

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1/14/2018 12:12 AM

I don't lube my chain. The reason dirt stuck to the chain in the first place was because there was too much lube on it. I occasionally (but pretty rarely) spray it with muc off mo94, and wipe off any excess. An over lubed chain will wear quicker

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1/14/2018 4:01 AM

grumpySteve wrote:

I don't lube my chain. The reason dirt stuck to the chain in the first place was because there was too much lube on it. I occasionally (but pretty rarely) spray it with muc off mo94, and wipe off any excess. An over lubed chain will wear quicker

This!

I just clean it with a piece of cloth, and once in a while put a tiny drop of oil at the pins.

Also, guys, WD40 and all that shit ain't good for the environment or for you.
Try and use an eco alternative.

Green Oil is one of the best!
Try and support them because we need more alternatives like them.

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1/14/2018 9:27 AM

I use white spirits in an ultrasonic cleaner for everything except seals. Means I can just drop the part in, come back in an hour and it'll be like new. Then just lube with whatever suitable lubricant I have on hand and put it back on the bike.

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My Sunday Soundwave V3 Build
Insta: @p.gibbons

"You can't educate pork"
- grumpySteve

"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!""
- Hunter S. Thompson

1/14/2018 4:16 PM

I put draino on my chain before and it took everything off even the color haha

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1/14/2018 4:28 PM

NateBrown62 wrote:

I put draino on my chain before and it took everything off even the color haha

lol

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Hmmm

1/14/2018 9:02 PM

NateBrown62 wrote:

I put draino on my chain before and it took everything off even the color haha

When my dad used to race when he was my age, he’d put his chain in a tray of gasoline and it’d clean his chain like nobody’s buisness

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Ride hard or Ride home.
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1/16/2018 4:44 PM

chain in a bucket of WD40, gonna let it sit for a bit. this chain is so filthy. it may be excessive, but i don’t give a shit
Photo

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Ride hard or Ride home.
Pink N’ Pretty

Instagram
@tarsales

1/16/2018 4:59 PM

DanTheBikerMan wrote:

chain in a bucket of WD40, gonna let it sit for a bit. this chain is so filthy. it may be excessive, but i don’t give a shit
Photo

Maybe just swish the bucket around to really get the WD40 in there to get all the old nasty lube out. That's why I like a water bottle becasue I can shake it and really clean it...

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I don't crash, I do random gravity checks...

1/17/2018 7:54 AM

When a chain needs a deep cleansing I do the same trick with the water bottle, last time I made a solution with water, a drop of soap, wd40 and left over kerosene from a jar. Filled bottle up half way with chain inside and shook the crap out of the bottle with the lid on, and kept dumping out the cruddy water and refilling it and repeating this process about 5 or 10 times until the water comes out clean.. just make sure you don't lose rings or parts from the chain. After 2 uses with the solution you should be able to use just water to keep on adding to the bottle after each time you dump it out because the solution is still on the chain and should be plenty to do the job without wasting more stuff to add to the water. I wiped it down with a rag after and hung it up to air dry for a while and it came clean like it was new

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1/17/2018 7:56 AM

Shredkink9 wrote:

When a chain needs a deep cleansing I do the same trick with the water bottle, last time I made a solution with water, a drop of soap, wd40 and left over kerosene from a jar. Filled bottle up half way with chain inside and shook the crap out of the bottle with the lid on, and kept dumping out the cruddy water and refilling it and repeating this process about 5 or 10 times until the water comes out clean.. just make sure you don't lose rings or parts from the chain. After 2 uses with the solution you should be able to use just water to keep on adding to the bottle after each time you dump it out because the solution is still on the chain and should be plenty to do the job without wasting more stuff to add to the water. I wiped it down with a rag after and hung it up to air dry for a while and it came clean like it was new

Also, try to avoid dumping all of those chemicals down any drains at your house or whatever because its not good for the system

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1/17/2018 8:33 AM

Buy a new chain. We should all be thinking about a new chain once a year or so anyway. That'll save wearing the driver or sprocket. And old chains are more likely to snap when you're giving it beans

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1/17/2018 9:05 AM

grumpySteve wrote:

Buy a new chain. We should all be thinking about a new chain once a year or so anyway. That'll save wearing the driver or sprocket. And old chains are more likely to snap when you're giving it beans

Yeah I usually buy a new chain every so often, but I had this chain for like a month and it just got dirty becasue it's winter and all this pineneedles and loose dirt on the paths just stuck to the chain...

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I don't crash, I do random gravity checks...

1/15/2020 7:06 PM

So getting the chain wet won’t cause rust ?

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1/15/2020 7:17 PM
Edited Date/Time: 1/15/2020 7:18 PM

_bmxican_ wrote:

So getting the chain wet won’t cause rust ?

As long as you dry it off immediately and oil it, it wont. I use water with degreaser to clean my chain sometimes but there are better ways.

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1/15/2020 8:42 PM

_bmxican_ wrote:

So getting the chain wet won’t cause rust ?

Bulletpup wrote:

As long as you dry it off immediately and oil it, it wont. I use water with degreaser to clean my chain sometimes but there are better ways.

Gotcha so d40 water and dry

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1/15/2020 8:57 PM

Pretty sure gasoline is cheaper and better at eating grease and than WD-40, it also totally evaporates pretty quick. You can dump it and light it on fire too lol...

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1/15/2020 9:07 PM
Edited Date/Time: 1/15/2020 9:09 PM

Clean my chain? No thanks. It works when it’s dirty. Anyway, I thought you stopped riding bikes because you got a car and a girlfriend.

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Don’t put 25.4 bars in a 22.2 stem.

1/16/2020 6:04 AM
Edited Date/Time: 1/16/2020 6:05 AM

_bmxican_ wrote:

So getting the chain wet won’t cause rust ?

Bulletpup wrote:

As long as you dry it off immediately and oil it, it wont. I use water with degreaser to clean my chain sometimes but there are better ways.

_bmxican_ wrote:

Gotcha so d40 water and dry

I have used gasoline very successfully, i hear a lot of people use brake cleaner too. But if I dont have anything else, dishwashing soap and a toothbrush works. After its somewhat clean. Slap some oil on it, Wd40 is not a good lubricant.

Any standard Motor or gear oil works well if you dont have anything else lighter in viscosity.

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1/16/2020 11:50 AM

BcBMX80 wrote:

Stop using wd40 guys it has kerosine in it and is not really a lube or protection, but for water displacent. Use a three in one oil or a chainlube for dirt bikes....

Actually...


But seriously, no one said WD40 (the water displacer) was a lubricant. The OP mentioned using it to clean the chain.


I use brake cleaner when at home, or a parts washer when working at the shop. Then fully dry, then dry chain lube on the BMX.
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"Hey anybody ever make that mistake like right when you wake up in the morning and you believe in yourself?" -Kyle Kinane

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1/17/2020 10:14 AM
Edited Date/Time: 1/17/2020 10:15 AM

For the past few months, I've been using an ultrasonic cleaner full of WD40 for everything. Works amazingly well. I get WD40 in bulk at work so it's actually not all that expensive. I'm still not looking forward to disposing of it and refilling though.

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My Sunday Soundwave V3 Build
Insta: @p.gibbons

"You can't educate pork"
- grumpySteve

"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!""
- Hunter S. Thompson