A bicycle chain care is one of the most important and often undeservedly undervalued parts of a bicycle. In terms of the number of parts, the chain surpasse the rest of the bicycle, while it must withstand loads greater than your weight – it is through the links of the chain that the force of your body turns into a wheel movement. Chain links constantly rubbing against each other need periodic lubrication.
Bike chain lubrication
There are three common options for chain lubrication: dig each link out of the oil can, use an aerosol lubricant in a can, or remove the chain and boil it in grease. Many chain lubricants include graphite or Teflon, enveloping chain links, and reducing friction between parts, which has a positive effect on service life. It is recommended to lubricate the circuit at least after 50-100 kilometers, or when a characteristic rustling sound appears. After lubrication, it is necessary to remove excess oil with a dry clean cloth, otherwise, dust and debris will adhere to the freshly oiled chain very quickly. In addition to increased wear, this greatly complicates the subsequent cleaning of the chain. Special attention and care when lubricating the chain should be paid to the wheel rims, and especially the brake discs – they should not get the grease, otherwise, the bike will remain without brakes.
Cleaned and washed
If the chain is contaminated, especially after rain or sand driving, it must be cleaned and washed, removing all the sand, dust and dirt that stuck to the old grease, thereby turning it into an aggressive abrasive. To do this, there is a special machine for cleaning the chain, which is a container with rotating brushes, where a special cleaner is poured into it – degeneration. You can also use a solvent such as white spirit, kerosene, or at the worst, water with a lot of dishwashing detergent. Do not pour diesel fuel, acetone and some types of gasoline into the chain, as they may suffer from the plastic housing. If you haven’t got a chain yet – a brush with thick nylon bristles will do. In any case, the brush will need to thoroughly clean the cassette stars and systems.
Best bike chain care – How to clean and lubricate a bicycle chain? Need to know it!
Bike locks chain
Many chains use detachable links – locks for the chain. They allow you to remove, change, clean and put on a chain quickly and without special tools, and in the event of a chain break, you can quickly return the bike to the system using a chain lock. The lock will be an important and almost weightless spare part, indispensable on long hikes. It is convenient to tie a spare lock on the cable of the rope in a secluded place, so you will never forget it at home. It is important to know that the chains differ in their thickness: single speeds are thicker, and their lock is usually arranged differently than on multi-speed ones. Multi-speed thinner, and have their gradation of thickness: the more stars installed on the rear hub – the thinner the chain used. So you need to buy a lock just knowing how much speed is used in the transmission of your bike.
Bike chain artwork
The bicycle chain care is not eternal, it has its own resource, and proper care will allow it to last much longer. Worn chains not only switch worse but also begin to aggressively eat the teeth in the front and rear sprockets. The new chain will skip over the worn out stars, and vice versa – the new cassette will not work with the old stretched chain due to the mismatch of the pitch. You can check the wear of the chain by regularly measuring the length of its links. For this, a ruler or caliper measures the distance of the tensioned chain between 12 links. If the resulting length is more than 307 millimeters, then the rollers are worn and loose, the chain should be replaced with a new one. If it turns out more than 308 mm, then the cassette (slave star block) is also to be replaced, and maybe the leading star too.
Do not underestimate the importance of timely replacing a worn transmission, as excessively broken teeth stop holding the chain and it is likely that a broken asterisk will throw off the chain at the most inappropriate moment. For example, under the load in the hill, at the start with a traffic light or simply during acceleration, which can lead to quite serious injuries and even provoke an accident? Besides, buying bicycle chains on time is much cheaper than changing the entire system. Prices for bicycle chains are several times less than the cost of a complete set with a cassette or a ratchet, and a system. Many cyclists, despite regular maintenance, carry out a replacement in advance, without waiting for the development of the resource chain, focusing on the mileage of the bike. This can help your bike computer. With a reminder function of the need for service.