Basics of the Chain Maintenance
Perhaps, a chain is the most important and sophisticated bicycle part. It includes more particles and moving parts than a bicycle itself. Many cyclists neglect chain maintenance even though it ensures effective and productive cycling and cadence.
A chain is located and rotates between the cog set and the main cassette, transforming your physical impact on pedals into the moving force. A high-quality and well-maintained chain can serve you for a long time and help you to cope with the heaviest physical loads.
Although old bicycle models have no chain or transmission, a well-serviced chain is a necessity for every productive bicycle and cyclist. The right chain maintenance is a basic of bicycle maintenance and every cyclist should know how to service his chain and which actions and measures should be avoided because wrong maintenance can significantly reduce a chain’s lifetime.
All chain’s moving parts such as rollers and links constantly rub against each other and if you won’t lube your chain properly and rightly, your chain could be damaged or worn-out very quickly. A damaged chain can damage other bicycle parts such as gears, cogs, and hubs.
Cogs’ teeth are extremely vulnerable and delicate. A greasy, littered and badly-oiled chain will erase and spoil them. As a result, your bicycle will need expensive and laborious repair.
To maintain a bicycle chain properly read these few easy tips
Grease and clean your chain
Firstly, you need to regularly grease and clean your chain. Different grease types are available on today’s market but we will stop on the most effective and suitable one – silicone grease. It often comes as a spray that penetrates all moving parts of the chain and then dries out, leaving a protective layer that repels dust, dirt, and other polluters.
Other grease types could be used to properly lubricate and grease a bicycle chain. Liquid, spray, and dry greases are available to every cyclist each of which has different features and technological characteristics.
It’s also important to know how to correctly spread the grease across the whole chain’s length and how much grease should be placed to avoid over-lubrication. A too big quantity of grease will only attract more dust and dirt forming mudballs and thick layers of dirt.
If you want to grease your chain properly and carefully, you should take it off of your bicycle, completely clean it from the old grease and then put it back on the cogs. Once it is back, put a small quantity of grease on the chain, easily clamp it with a small rag and then start pedaling with your hand. This way, grease will be evenly distributed across the whole chain’s length.
Replacing old grease and wash off
Secondly, clean your chain regularly, replacing old grease and washing off dust and dirt layers.
To do this, in the first place, you will need to put your bike upside down and then clamp the chain with a rag. Once you’ve got a chain in your hand covered with a rag, start to rotate the pedals, letting it move through your hand, leaving all the dirt, old grease, and dust on the rag. Replace the rag periodically until the upper layer of dirt will go away.
Wipe down your chain
Then, wipe down your chain with a clean rag, soaked with purified gasoline or grease remover. If your chain is in a bad condition, the best way to clean a bike chain is to drown it in a container filled with a similar liquid and leave it for thirty minutes.
After that, wipe it down again and grease it with silicone or another type of grease. It is hard to tell how often you need to clean a bike chain because it depends on numerous factors such as the terrain type, the weather, and many others.
Also, you need to watch after your chain’s service time. A stretched chain could damage cogs’ teeth and cog sets. As a result, gearing would be ineffective and hardly-manageable. Cleaning a bike chain is a simple but dirty and very impossible process that requires some basic skills and should be done regularly. The bike chain requires a careful and rationalized approach because it is an integral part of every bicycle.
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