Bike cleaning stuff

lost_in_thought
lost_in_thought Posts: 10,563
edited February 2009 in Commuting chat
Well, I've decided I'm fed up of being made grubby by my extremely grubby bike. This is usually what pushes me to clean my cars too...

So what do people use to clean their bikes?

Muc-off? Other bike cleaner? Fairy liquid? Devotion to the Pope?

And how do you go about doing it? Take it outside, flip it upside down and go from there? Take the whole thing apart?

Clearly I've never cleaned a bike before... :oops:
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Comments

  • itboffin
    itboffin Posts: 20,061
    Fanatical devotion to the Pope - blasphemer :twisted:
    Rule #5 // Harden The Feck Up.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.
    Rule #12 // The correct number of bikes to own is n+1.
    Rule #42 // A bike race shall never be preceded with a swim and/or followed by a run.
  • prawny
    prawny Posts: 5,440
    Ha your not going to beat me this time!

    Dont use washing up liquid unless it salt free.

    Car shampoo is good, muck off is expensive.

    A workstand is v useful

    Don't you dare turn the viner upside down!!!!
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • whyamihere
    whyamihere Posts: 7,708
    Sponge, water, low pressure hose, then wipe the worst of the water off, lube the chain, job's a good 'un.
  • biondino
    biondino Posts: 5,990
    High pressure air hose filled with diamond particles.
  • robmanic1
    robmanic1 Posts: 2,150
    Muck off IS expensive but good, and you can dilute it pretty well (I manage to eke out quite a number of washes before renewal because I'm tight).
    Pictures are better than words because some words are big and hard to understand.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/34335188@N07/3336802663/
  • Diamond particles, eh? Sounds more expensive than muc-off... And why can't I flip the viner upside down? It's only the bars and saddle touching the ground...
    Sponge, water, low pressure hose, then wipe the worst of the water off, lube the chain, job's a good 'un.

    So no soapy stuff?
    Muck off IS expensive but good

    How much bike would a litre do?
  • itboffin
    itboffin Posts: 20,061
    Sandblasting is pretty effect too.
    Rule #5 // Harden The Feck Up.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.
    Rule #12 // The correct number of bikes to own is n+1.
    Rule #42 // A bike race shall never be preceded with a swim and/or followed by a run.
  • prawny
    prawny Posts: 5,440
    And why can't I flip the viner upside down? It's only the bars and saddle touching the ground...

    No mechanical reason, it's just disrespectful :D . It's not hard to knock em over when they're upside down tho I wouldn;t want to take the risk. With the money you're spending on it I'd treat it like a baby (and get some of them gloves the snooker refs have)
    Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015 - Dead - Replaced with a Hack Frame
    Voodoo Bizango - 2014 - Dead - Hit by a car
    Vitus Sentier VRS - 2017
  • robmanic1
    robmanic1 Posts: 2,150
    Diamond particles, eh? Sounds more expensive than muc-off... And why can't I flip the viner upside down? It's only the bars and saddle touching the ground...
    Sponge, water, low pressure hose, then wipe the worst of the water off, lube the chain, job's a good 'un.

    So no soapy stuff?
    Muck off IS expensive but good

    How much bike would a litre do?

    If it's only commuting funk I reckon you'd get a good 20 bikesworth (diluted), followed by a liberal application of GT40 or similar to protect it and make it a whole lot easier to wash down next time.
    Pictures are better than words because some words are big and hard to understand.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/34335188@N07/3336802663/
  • Slow Downcp
    Slow Downcp Posts: 3,041
    Garden hose at low pressure to rinse worst off, wash down with warm water and car shampoo, rince with hose, relube chain.
    Carlsberg don't make cycle clothing, but if they did it would probably still not be as good as Assos
  • A cloth. Dipped in degreaser.

    This you can do indoors. Garden hoses get a bit out of hand when used indoors, I find. :?
    Swim. Bike. Run. Yeah. That's what I used to do.

    Bike 1
    Bike 2-A
  • robmanic1
    robmanic1 Posts: 2,150
    If it's indoor washing your after simply bathe with a friend, although I'm not sure if Muc-off makes a good hair conditioner.
    Pictures are better than words because some words are big and hard to understand.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/34335188@N07/3336802663/
  • Forgive my ignorance, but does degreaser not just remove grease? This has gone way beyond grease - solidified build-up of nasty london black stuff anyone?

    And I do have a garden, although no garden hose.
  • don_don
    don_don Posts: 1,007
    IMHO, Hope Sh1tshifter is better than Muc-off and kinder to paint/plastics. I would also recommend some cycle specific brushes like the ones X-lite do for about a tenner. I just use a bucket of water, spray cleaner onto the brush and away you go.

    Its probably also worth getting a chain cleaner (Park tools do a great one) and some degreaser to do the chain every so often.

    Finally, Muc-off do make a good bike spray, just called Bike Spray funnily enough, which you can spray all over the frame to stop it gathering dirt so quickly. I think GT85 or WD40 are too strong for this. Don't get it on the rims or brake blocks though.

    I'm not sure if the bike spray would be worth doing on a carbon bike though, but then you will probably not be getting this so dirty.
  • robmanic1
    robmanic1 Posts: 2,150
    don_don wrote:
    IMHO, Hope Sh1tshifter is better than Muc-off and kinder to paint/plastics. I would also recommend some cycle specific brushes like the ones X-lite do for about a tenner. I just use a bucket of water, spray cleaner onto the brush and away you go.

    Its probably also worth getting a chain cleaner (Park tools do a great one) and some degreaser to do the chain every so often.

    Finally, Muc-off do make a good bike spray, just called Bike Spray funnily enough, which you can spray all over the frame to stop it gathering dirt so quickly. I think GT85 or WD40 are too strong for this. Don't get it on the rims or brake blocks though.

    I'm not sure if the bike spray would be worth doing on a carbon bike though, but then you will probably not be getting this so dirty.

    Not used the Hope stuff before, the Muc-off is alleged to be fairly strong, hence the dilution.
    As for the GT40, sprayed on an oily rag and wiped over the frame does the trick for me, I haven't melted a bike yet. :wink:
    Pictures are better than words because some words are big and hard to understand.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/34335188@N07/3336802663/
  • _Brun_
    _Brun_ Posts: 1,740
    I agree with G66. Instead of a cloth however I use my oldest pair of pants, which I find is a good way to make sure I buy new ones with reasonable regularlity. Same with toothbrushes actually.
  • So what do people use to clean their bikes?

    Rainwater. :lol:

    Watch the weather forecast. When massive downpour predicted, push bike out back door. Close back door. Wait a few hours. Result, slightly cleaner bike.

    At least, that's broadly the approach I use for the old beast that I ride :oops: during bad weather. My new Fratello has yet to see real dirt so I might change cleaning tactics for that one when it needs it.
    Never be tempted to race against a Barclays Cycle Hire bike. If you do, there are only two outcomes. Of these, by far the better is that you now have the scalp of a Boris Bike.
  • A soft brush is useful to clean your wheel rims and tyres. An old tooth brush as well for those little nooks on your bike where the muck collects.
  • LCFC85 wrote:

    Holy rusted metal Batman! That's an insane amount of work! I had more thought of a quick once over so that I don't get black stuff all over my hands when I pick it up!
  • il_principe
    il_principe Posts: 9,155
    LCFC85 wrote:

    Not sure I agree with all of that, particularly his suggestion for cleaning the cassette, far easier to remover the cassette and clean it, quicker too.

    Oh and don't use muc off on the Viner, even diluted it marked some of Il Principe's frame, ok so it's so minor that only I'm ever going to notice, but that's not the point.

    Hack bike = degrease, hose, rinse, lube etc.

    Viner = regular cleaning with damp cloth and relube. Clean regularly and you won't need degreaser (unless you encounter French sheep poo which has cement like staying power!) I wipe my bike down after every ride. Reckon doing that saves me time in the long run. Entirely depends on how anal you are about your bikes!
  • itboffin
    itboffin Posts: 20,061
    LCFC85 wrote:

    Not sure I agree with all of that, particularly his suggestion for cleaning the cassette, far easier to remover the cassette and clean it, quicker too.

    Oh and don't use muc off on the Viner, even diluted it marked some of Il Principe's frame, ok so it's so minor that only I'm ever going to notice, but that's not the point.

    Hack bike = degrease, hose, rinse, lube etc.

    Viner = regular cleaning with damp cloth and relube. Clean regularly and you won't need degreaser (unless you encounter French sheep poo which has cement like staying power!) I wipe my bike down after every ride. Reckon doing that saves me time in the long run. Entirely depends on how anal you are about your bikes!

    Oh Jash what a poor sheltered clean city life you and the prince have led, get out there and get grubby :twisted:

    LiTs surely at that price they send someone round to you house once a week to strip, wax and clean the whole bike, surely?

    One of the reasons why I love the SS is how easy it is to clean after a really mucky ride, I just JET WASH the whole thing.

    I don't care if it shortens the life of the BB etc etc etc a new BB is £6 and anyway the conditions out this way do far more damage than high pressure washer can.
    Rule #5 // Harden The Feck Up.
    Rule #9 // If you are out riding in bad weather, it means you are a badass. Period.
    Rule #12 // The correct number of bikes to own is n+1.
    Rule #42 // A bike race shall never be preceded with a swim and/or followed by a run.
  • I go for Muc Off, old towels, old tooth brushes, sponge and good old elbow grease.

    I find a quick squirt and a wipe down every couple of days keeps things ticking over fairly nicely.

    or you could just ride through a car wash?
  • Jamey
    Jamey Posts: 2,152
    Two things I'm very surprised nobody's mentioned...

    1) Fenwicks. Similar price to Muc-Off but better stuff and can be used neat as a degreaser or diluted on the rest of the bike, perfectly safe for paintwork and rubber seals.

    2) Turning the bike upside down - it's nothing to do with the saddle/bars touching the ground... The reason you shouldn't do it is because water can get into places it's not meant to, like inside the forks (that hole just above where the wheel passes through the forks), which will wash out the grease in the headset.
  • DonDaddyD
    DonDaddyD Posts: 12,689
    Mr Muscle wet wipes....

    I sh*t you not...
    Food Chain number = 4

    A true scalp is not only overtaking someone but leaving them stopped at a set of lights. As you, who have clearly beaten the lights, pummels nothing but the open air ahead. ~ 'DondaddyD'. Player of the Unspoken Game
  • Not very anal about bikes thus far...

    OK, so, don't turn it upside down, or not for long/not while washing the front wheel/calipers/fork...

    Buy a hose, use it...

    Degreaser = good and not just for grease... (it's the word it's the word that you heard it's got groove it's got meaning grease is the time is the place is the motion now grease is the way we are feeling)

    Muc-off is pretty strong

    Fenwicks (like the shop?) and Hope make better ones.

    I've learnt a lot today...

    Are those chain cleaning machines really worth it?
  • spursn17
    spursn17 Posts: 284
    DonDaddyD wrote:
    Mr Muscle wet wipes....

    I sh*t you not...

    Baby wipes, removes oil, grease and even tar spots.

    God knows what it does to a baby!!
  • stuaff
    stuaff Posts: 1,736
    Chain cleaning machines: Maybe I'm just cack-handed, but on my Cadenza all my Park Tools machine succeeded in doing was knocking the chain off. The inside of the chain was OK, outside still stained (could be something or other's permanently marked it- it's had repeated cleaning with degreaser, GT85, shampoo, spent a lot of time on it...). Not tried it on the Jetstream, but that chain's fairly clean anyway.....
    Dahon Speed Pro TT; Trek Portland
    Viner Magnifica '08 ; Condor Squadra
    LeJOG in aid of the Royal British Legion. Please sponsor me at http://www.bmycharity.com/stuaffleck2011
  • Okay, I cant resist:

    Hosepipe
    sponge
    tiny white top
    hotpants


    jobs a goodun















    I'll get my coat...
  • If it's a weekly/fortnightly clean it just be a degreaser, chain cleaner and toothbrush job. Then re-grease all the necessary parts.

    Every 6 odd months (or when required) strip a few parts down and give it a bit more of a thorough clean...