Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Becoming Obsesed With Chain Lube

There seems to be a lot of discussions about what is the best chain lube out there. Honestly, if you ask 50 bicycle mechanics what the best chain lube is, you'll get at least 10-15 different answers. It simply isn't cut and dry. There are many factors involved including riding style, riding conditions, multispeed vs singlespeed, price, and willingness to take the time to apply properly. I've probably used at least a dozen personally myself over the years and having lived in the Desert SW, the High Sierras, and the Pacific NW...I've used lubes that work in different conditions and some that don't work well for any conditions. For dry and dusty conditions, I've found that Dumonde Tech works best when the application procedures are followed. Pour it on like many other dry lubes and you'll make a mess, but put it on correctly and it will be clean and last a long time in dry conditions. However in wet conditions, you need something that is really going to lubricate your chain without getting washed off. Over the years, I've found that Phil's Tenacious Oil works best when the weather hits the fan. Again, you need to apply it correctly or you'll end up with a big mess. However, there is one thing that bothers me with Phil''s mineral oil based. So while all the water is splashing up and washing away small amounts, I'm polluting our fresh water. Yes, I know its a small amount but still, it all ads up. Now, there are some biodegradable chain lubes hitting the market these days...but of course I like to come up with my own DIY solution. So after some research, I have come in possession of a product that might just do the trick. I'm going to refrain from giving up the product name but its 100% biodegradable, 100% mineral or synthetic oil free, and a product of the USA (and NO, you can't find it in the cooking isle at Safeway). I'm going to give it a try and if I find it works well then I'm going to bottle it and let some riding buddies try it. I'm not planning to sell it but I might have fun with it a little.



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