Sorry to be the naysayer, but this “microfiber” seems like a ripoff, looks a lot like butcher’s twine which is much much cheaper:
Did anybody try a pressurized water jet (the cleaning grade, not the cutting grade)? With what results?
OMG, no! I have to cover the carbs and block the tailpipes if I bring a garden hose near the motorcycle. A pressure washer would probably blow water past all the seals on a gentle mode.
Simple Green and a toothbrush was my prior method. This works much better. I don’t even need the simple green if I stay on top of the grime and clean the bike up every 1000 or so miles.
Pressure washers work okay if you’re careful not to force water into any bearings or cable housings. I’ve always done fine with a soft toothbrush on small parts like the derailleur pictured. If it is especially dirty you can always take it apart.
Random thought. Could a bike/motorcycle be redesigned to be friendly to pressurized washers? Perhaps adding metal sleeves around the seals, covers over bearings, and so on? Would the added design cost/effort be worth the long-term saving on cleaning effort?
I can take a garden hose to my fuel injected bike if I cover the pipes.
On a bicycle, I’ll take the increased performance of not having anything extra tacked on over the convenience. Plus stripping it down to it’s basic components periodically is a relaxing meditative exercise. (At least, I think so.)
Bonus, you can safely use the butchers’ twine to light up your wood stove.
I immediately thought of dental floss.
Was gonna ask if it was better than something like a toothbrush and simple green. Thanks for that. Old toothbrushes are great for some jobs but the splatter on chrome and paint gets kind old. I’ll definitely have to try this out next time.
Ugh! You bright, intelligent people have apparently never had to clean a bicycle’s drivetrain. As someone who maintains five or six bicycles on a regular basis, I can tell you that cooking twine, dental floss, and a waterpick are not going to solve the problem.
A bicycle picks up a remarkable amount of grit and gunk when ridden regularly on roads. This forms a rough, uneven coating of tar-black crud that works its way in between the cassette sprockets, the derailleur pulleys, the chainrings and the tiny gaps in the chain as well. You need to get rid of it because this accelerates chain wear, and chain wear leads to damaging other expensive components.
What you can’t tell about this microfiber “floss” is that it is several times thicker than cooking twine. It’s designed to fit the gap between chainring and cassette gears, and pull the crud through with one good tug. It’s very tough, and will not tear when pulled against a sharp chainring. Twine is too thin. It would get cut, fragment and leave little pieces stuck in the crevasses.
Water under pressure is not bad for loose dirt and mud, if applied carefully. It has no effect on road crud buildup though. It’s a lot like the stuff that sticks to the bottom of the front bumper on your car. BTW, I am not affiliated with the people who make this stuff. I just find it to be the best answer to a long hated problem, so far.
Frequently, and I do fine with brushes, solvent, and soaking. My drive train is so clean I’ve had professional mechanics refuse to work on my bike because they didn’t want to screw anything up. Interesting to hear about the floss though, so thanks for that bit.
Wow - I have never seen a better use case than this is for Simpsons individual stringettes.
Absolutely appropriate for “The Now String”
I go to the local paint shop and get a bag o’ rags, and then rip them up into flossy strips. Cheap, works great. But I will say those OXO brushes mentioned a day or two ago? Those are great for cleaning the hard-to-get bits.
Anything that lets you clean up oil and grease with water is an emulsifier, and thus a bad move on a bike, IMO. Bad idea to clean a bike’s drivetrain with water, and it’s usually a bad idea to point a pressure washer at a bike (race bike mechanics use them because it’s quick and the bikes are fully rebuilt on a regular basis).
The problem with using an emulsifier is that it gets into nooks and crannies where you’re not going to be able to rinse it all away, and it can work into the inside of the chain and bearing races and affect the lube, which will then be able to mix with any water that comes along… bad.
The way to keep a clean bike is to be regular but sparing with chain lube, and after lubing, and the first couple of rides after lubing, take the time to wipe as much excess lube off the chain as you can. When the only lube around is inside the chain and there’s only a light protective film on the rest of the drivetrain (like what’s left when you thoroughly wipe oil off steel with a dry rag), your bike stays much, much cleaner. When it gets a bit grotty, and before lubing, hit the chain with a rag that’s only slightly damp with an oil-based solvent like white spirit or WD40. Throwing lots of stuff at the chain is a sure way of washing nasties inside it.
Clean the rest of the bike with soapy water from a spray bottle and a rag.
Some folks throw big gobs of grease at everything on the bike, but the only place where there should be any lube visible is on the rollers of the chain - it’s past time to lube when they get shiny.
True, dry is the best dirt repellant. And a bike that starts a rainy wet day clean doesn’t collect much along the way.
As for this product, yes getting in between rings is difficult, I used to use jet line in just this manner. If you run a dry bike you don’t have to work to hard to get stuff out, just break it up and most of it falls out or comes out even on a nylon jet line. I used it because it was thick, with thick fibres that didn’t stay behind. Also I had lots.
Another thing I found worked, not cleaning a wet bike. It’ll hurt nothing to just go relax, go to bed, let the lion’s share of it evaporate and clean it tomorrow. Way easier clean and you aren’t pushing water & fibres into tight spots.
I don’t do anything with my bikes when they’re wet, except let em dry. Every once in a while I’ll give em a wipe.
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