Quick, lazy and stupid cleaning?

Enjoying some rides, on the roads or along tracks, beautiful sunshine or getting drenched and covered in muck. Either way, taking up cycling in the last three years has been great for me.

But I'm still unsure exactly what to use to clean my bike, or in what places.
I recently bought some muc-off (the pink stuff) as it was buy one, get one free.
After doing research I've found a lot of people spray it everywhere, though some state not on chains, cassettes and brakes.....those who say don't worry state if you spray it off in a few minutes all will be fine.
I also have bike oil and GT85.Are they basically the same thing?

Basically, I know you can strip your bike down, and create your own solution, but life is so busy I don't have the time, and I'm pretty stupid when it comes to anything mechanical in the slightest so please take that into consideration. Parts of my bike, pedals and handlebars have gotten a little rusty too...

This is what I did last time...
1- Spray muc-off all over, rinse after a few minutes (I used a toothbrush and muc-off to clean cassette at back)
2 - apply bike oil to chain and cassette

I didnt do anything with the GT85 - where should I use that? Rusty bits? Or do I not need to.

Advice given using these three products would be useful please

Many thanks - Richard
 
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Brommyboy

Über Member
Location
Rugby
My bikes have no gunk used on them! I clean with a dry rag. The chain is oiled after cleaning and any collections of old grease/oil around the sprockets can be cleaned off with a stick or screwdriver and finished with a twist of cotton string. Altogether they have done lots of miles, the tourer having clocked up over 65000 so far, and it is still in good roadworthy condition.
 

Pauluk

Senior Member
Location
Leicester
It's not an exact science Richard so don't worry about it. When my bike has got really dirty I hose it down (I don't use a strong jet) then use a cheap car wash soap in a bucket of warm water and a brush. Then hose it down again. Leave it to dry for about 20 minutes or wipe dry if the weather's not good.

Then I lube the chain, cassette, chain rings and derailleurs with GT85 then wipe off the excess. A small amount of GT85 on the frame and wipe off with a cloth (small areas at a time). Then I wipe the chain so its almost completely free of lube on the outer surfaces. Make sure you keep the GT85 away from brake pads, brake rims or disks, wheel hubs and bottom bracket.

Alternatively I sometimes use a dry chain lube on the chain after the GT85 has dried completely, as it lasts a bit longer than GT85 and again wipe off the excess on the outer surfaces.
 
OP
RichardWHardwick

RichardWHardwick

Senior Member
Thanks folks,
I don't need to use GT85 on the chain, cassette etc if I've already put some bike oil on though do I? I put some on yesterday. And is GT85 better, thus making bike oil redundant?
Also, should I use GT85 on those rusty bits, as you say Pauluk, small amount and wipe with a cloth?
 

Pauluk

Senior Member
Location
Leicester
I'm not sure what you mean by bike oil but you need to be careful since if your cassette and chain etc are covered with oil they will pick up and hang on to grit and muck that will then cause more long term problems.

I wouldn't use "bike oil" personally.

You shouldn't have any rusty bits. Where is the rust?
 
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RichardWHardwick

RichardWHardwick

Senior Member
Cycle oil, from everyone's favourite shop - Halfords. It "ensures the smooth running of all cyle parts suh as chains, cassettes adn cables". I put it on rather liberally yesterday. Maybe I should wipe off the excess as you do with GT85? Or just use GT85 in future?

As for rust, well there's some on the handelbars and on the pedals - not a great deal but its there...
 

Pauluk

Senior Member
Location
Leicester
In that case I wouldn't worry too much about that rust unless you want to try and clean some of it off. If you can't you could always treat yourself to some new bars and pedals.

I really wouldn't leave bike oil over any surfaces as it will just allow grit and dirt to stick. Personally I would use a citrus degreaser on the bike at its next clean, just before you wash and rinse. Then use GT85 and a dry or wet chain lube then make sure you wipe off any excess.
 

akb

Veteran
My weekly cleaning routine.

Remove chain and soak in soapy water. Scrub with hard brush. Rinse and allow to dry.
Scrub the cassette and anything else drivetrain related. Using a small flat head screwdriver to get between the cogs.
Muc Off on rag and give the frame a quick wipe.
Check tyres for damage and remove any penetrable bits. Remove mudguards and spray with hose and scrub if required.
Check the brakes for wear and tighten.

GT85 the drivetrain and wipe off excess. Teflon based Lube and good to go.
 
As this /\
 

darth vadar

Über Member
One of my best friends when cleaning my bike is a cheap toothbrush to get in all those little awkward areas.

Works for me.

Just remember, don't put it back into the bathroom afterwards!!
 

Lee_M

Guru
My weekly cleaning routine.

Remove chain and soak in soapy water. Scrub with hard brush. Rinse and allow to dry.
Scrub the cassette and anything else drivetrain related. Using a small flat head screwdriver to get between the cogs.
Muc Off on rag and give the frame a quick wipe.
Check tyres for damage and remove any penetrable bits. Remove mudguards and spray with hose and scrub if required.
Check the brakes for wear and tighten.

GT85 the drivetrain and wipe off excess. Teflon based Lube and good to go.
wow!

do you get time to ride as well ? :ohmy:

I degrease and relube my chain and drive gear and make sure nothing has fallen off
 

akb

Veteran
wow!

do you get time to ride as well ? :ohmy:
Yep, It takes about 30mins to an hour a week (usually a Tuesday when her indoors, isn't) I dont really have much choice, 25 miles a day, 4 days a week commuting collects lots of shite that needs to go. Plus it prolongs the life of the bike and drivetrain bits; im too tight to keep spending money on replacement bits.
 

darth vadar

Über Member
Silly I know, but after taking my new bike out along part of the TPT and getting it muddied up to the eyeballs, I now no longer go out on it if the conditions are going to be bad.

I just remember the sad, sinking feeling that I got looking at the poor thing afterwards, even after giving it a thorough clean.

I love my bike !!

:eek:
 
OK - when I was commuting my route was such that my mtb bike would need cleaning down at each end (as would I) - 1/2 my route was across muddy bridlepaths, the other half dirty single track roads covered in farm/field mud. A watering can was needed, cleaning off the excess muck from chain, cassettes and anything else that was covered, me included. Once a week, I would throughly clean the chain - usually the only day the bike was not used - Saturdays. Thoroughly - with a chain brush and dedicated suitable solvent, then rubbed down with oil on a clean rag... cassette received similar treatment. Every 1,500-2,000 miles the entire lot would need replacing - worn out because of the conditions I commuted in and the higher end and therefore softer parts fitted to the Scott Scale 40 bike I commuted on. (I commuted at most 16 miles a day...)

On tour, on a dedicated off road touring bike with Rohloff hub - unless the day have been seriously hard on the bike (like cycling over newly laid road surface covering everything in sticky tar), the chain would be cleaned thoroughly about once a week (usually laundry day, so every 7-10 days). It would then have the absolute minimum of high end "oil" applied (our tourers are Rohloff hubs, so no cassette to worry about). The chain would get more "oil" during the week if needed. Once every 5,000km when the oil in the hubs was changed, then chain was taken off the bikes and really well cleaned to within an inch of its life (toothbrush etc). the result - my OH's chain & cogs lasted 9,500km, mine 14,500km - the chain was nothing special - think £5... (We would typically cover 50 miles a day.)
 
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