The Chainlink

The chain on the pink machine is so rusty... This is a-new-chain by "new chain" standards. Got it from LBS back in December as I was putting this build together. SRAM single speed chain to be exact.

I've only cleaned it once before - a couple of weeks ago. Took chain off and submitted it to a sonic cleaner bath. Was so nice and warm and clean - then I lubed it... and just this week, back at it again.

The puddles on the Dearborn bike lane and the Lake Shore Trail have punishment in the form of salty brine puddles.

The chain is ok though. It doesn't sound like it is grinding yet. It will get another dose of TLC tomorrow night after the 22 mile commute home. I will also clean out the ENO hub, cog, chainring, drivetrain. It will be ready for another week of highly recommended bicycle commute punishment. 

Show us your rusty chains. 


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There is no still  picture of this but there is a movie. That movie shows the chain getting dirty, getting clean, getting dirty,  getting clean,  rinse, wash,  repeat.

Front end - so much filthiness.

Fenders do a lot to keep everything (even the chain) from getting fouled. A quick wipe-down after every messy ride is worth the small effort, too, especially when there is so much salt on the streets.

KMC makes a "Rust-Buster" series of chains that do not rust.  I have had the single speed variety on my winter bike for about 6 years I think and it never had a spot of rust.  I just changed the chain (due to stretch) with a SRAM PC-1 that I had lying around and it had a patina of rust after its first ride.  

The single speed Z410RB RUST-BUSTER works great and is cheap, about $10.  I can't speak to their multi-speed version of the chain as I've not used one but KMC makes really nice chains so I imagine that they would do just as well.

link to KMC site page Rust-Buster

Oh yes! I think I'll have to get this chain. The SRAM was what I got because it was inexpensive. 

Just got a brand new chain, crank and cassette put on one of my bikes yesterday, at Comrad Cycles. They always do great work.

Ernesto, 'if' I didn't lube and wipe my chain every so often during the last four months of riding on the salt flats of Chicago, my chain would look like this:

I have this soy-based lube I use (~$8) that I could also use on my salad in a pinch. not ;-)

This is a waxed chain, folks! Don't worry about the "gummy" look!!!! In fact, the wax used is a "proprietary blend" courtesy of Yours Truly :p :p (But it's really 100% beeswax, in case anyone's asking :P :P :P) Actually, had to re-wax right before these pics b/c of a ride in the rain. Hence, the dirt everywhere!! TBH, I waxed the rear derailleur as well - well, only the section containing the gears. The derailleur arm itself I left alone :p :p So, if there's any issue right now, it's probably the slight lack of springiness and/or free-spin of the derailleur cogs due to a full degreasing following by full wax submersion!!

Home brew, 50% motor oil/50% mineral spirits, cheap enough to wipe down and oil the chain every day if needed.

Me gusta!

Ernesto, lube.

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