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  #1  
Old 14 Jan 2011
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Chain Maintanance in Sand ?

Hi All, i have always maintained my chains with regular use of high quality chain lube but what do you do in a sandy country like Morocco? Does chain lube and sand make grinding paste? Is daily cleaning of the chain and brushing on light weight oil the answer or am i worrying for nothing and should keep applying my chain lube? Andy
PS please no GS tractor boys gloating about the virtues of their shaft drives or i may be forced to put on a link to the Hitler VFR video, still the best vid out there.
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Old 15 Jan 2011
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I think just clean with parafin (correction - kerosene, sorry no option to score out) & toothbrush as it has some lube qualities, adding oil will just make the sand stick to the chain.
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Old 15 Jan 2011
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Not sure Morocco's more sandy than many other places in the world you'd be riding off pavement, but aside from that consideration I just sprayed with WD40 as often as I thought of it, and my chain lasted from Germany throughout southern Europe, ex-Yugoslavia, a month of Morocco and all the way up to Tromso...about 15,000 miles/25,000 km. Exactly as long, in other words, as it would have if I'd been taking proper care.

I wasn't taking proper care. My theory, which others share, is that anything sticky attracts stuff which I don't like. WD 40 is mainly just a cleaner which happens to come in an aerosol can, doubles for drying out wiring, and is easy to spot on store shelves. This self-justifying theory allows me to do what I'd do anyway, but with a clear conscience. I don't use a brush either: spray, sometimes wipe, then ignore.

Mileage, they say, varies.

Mark
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Old 15 Jan 2011
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Originally Posted by markharf View Post
Not sure Morocco's more sandy than many other places in the world you'd be riding off pavement, but aside from that consideration I just sprayed with WD40 as often as I thought of it, and my chain lasted from Germany throughout southern Europe, ex-Yugoslavia, a month of Morocco and all the way up to Tromso...about 15,000 miles/25,000 km. Exactly as long, in other words, as it would have if I'd been taking proper care.

I wasn't taking proper care. My theory, which others share, is that anything sticky attracts stuff which I don't like. WD 40 is mainly just a cleaner which happens to come in an aerosol can, doubles for drying out wiring, and is easy to spot on store shelves. This self-justifying theory allows me to do what I'd do anyway, but with a clear conscience. I don't use a brush either: spray, sometimes wipe, then ignore.

Mileage, they say, varies.

Mark
YES, WD40.
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  #5  
Old 15 Jan 2011
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This is where you feel the virtues of a shaft drive. Where you don't feel the virtue is when a £3 bearing craps out and BMW want £1500 to swap it out for you. I went back to a chain.
There is a school of thouht that lubricating the chain is a bad move. The actual moving bearing surfaces are sealed internally and oil on the outside attracts dirt (or sand) and turns into grinding paste. I would just keep it clean with a solvent and keep my eye on it.
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Old 15 Jan 2011
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I do the chain each night, normally using chain cleaner to remove the crap, then either a light spray oil if I know I'm not piste riding, otherwise WD40.

All you are really doing is lubricating the chain/sprocket interface as the chain should have its own internal lubrication.

My Tenere has so far done 19000km inside Morocco on the first chain. No sign of hooking yet but will probably renew the chain and sprockets before the next trip.
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Old 16 Jan 2011
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Thanks

Hi All, thanks for the advice, WD40 seems to be the way to go.
Tim, special thanks, i decided to tour the Moroccon pistes this summer on my Tenere after reading your ride reports on Avdrider and your advice link. Andy
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Old 25 Jan 2011
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generally in sand run the chain dry (theres oil in there them links!). oh and wd40 destroys rubber so im told - so not too good for orings....
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Old 2 Feb 2011
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You find lots of warnings against using WD40 on chains in bicycle forums which might not be so un-relevant for us here too. WD40 is designed to penetrate and clean, not so much to lubricate. It can penetrate the O-rings and establish itself as thin film underneath the O-ring lubricants. Which may result in the original lubricant being flushed out over time.
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Old 2 Feb 2011
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Lots of ways to evaluate use of WD40. You could, for example, go with what you "heard" about it attacking o-rings. You could go with your suspicion that it might "result in the original lubricant being flushed out over time." You could base your decisions on the basis of what people say about bicycle chains which, you'll have noticed, don't even have o-rings (or any lube at all aside from what you apply yourself).

On the other hand, you could instead go with the empirical evidence which suggests that WD-40 works just fine on o-ring or x-ring chains. Me, I don't take good care of my chains and they last a minimum of 12,000 miles/20,000 km and a maximum approaching 20,000 miles/35,000 km (I don't log stuff like this, and I don't pay close attention). That's about the same as I used to get when I did take care of chains.

There are people on other lists (e.g., the DSN KLR Yahoo group) who regularly report going 35,000 miles (that's 60,000 km) on x-ring chains using nothing but WD 40. They seem to be much more finicky than I; for example, they clean their chains at every fill-up or whenever they've been out in the rain. On the other end of the spectrum, I regularly go 500 to 800 miles between cleanings whether it rains or not, and I sometimes ride dirt and gravel all day, then neglect to clean the chain before going out and doing it again the next day. Shameful, huh?

Make your choice, but think about trying something different every now and then to see if it really matters. Far as I can tell, it doesn't make much difference. What I have observed personally is that using a chain lube in sand or silt results in observable rapid wear of sprockets; you can practically see them getting hooked and dished.

enjoy,

Mark
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Old 2 Feb 2011
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Checked my notes and it was actually Kerosene I used. Got 30k kms out of my DR650 chain with cleaning every other day using a toothbrush. Occasionally used spray chain oil where I could buy it.

Interesting comment on using WD40 on bike chains at the end of this article:
Motorcycle Chain Lube and the Grunge Brush - webBikeWorld
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Old 3 Feb 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andysr6 View Post
Hi All, i have always maintained my chains with regular use of high quality chain lube but what do you do in a sandy country like Morocco? Does chain lube and sand make grinding paste? Is daily cleaning of the chain and brushing on light weight oil the answer or am i worrying for nothing and should keep applying my chain lube? Andy
PS please no GS tractor boys gloating about the virtues of their shaft drives or i may be forced to put on a link to the Hitler VFR video, still the best vid out there.
Am I the only Scottoiler fan out here ?

Approaching 14k (miles, not those new fangled Kms), the bikes have crossed Texas, Chihauhau, central/west Mexico and are currently in Peru... quite a lo of desert and sand IMO.

Only adjusted 5 times so far.
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Old 3 Feb 2011
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Personally, I don't like Scottoilers. Too expensive, too complicated and unfixable if they break. I've had a Loobman chainoiler installed on my Tenere. Very basic principle: plastic bottle, squeeze some oil into a tiny reservoir and let gravity do what it does best: gravitate. Unfortunately I had to sell the bike after about 20,000 km but didn't have to adjust the chain once!

Admittedly I haven't tried WD40 yet but I've been warned that it cleans and destroys more than it lubricates. I'll install another Loobman on my new Tenere, it's definitely worth the money. Oh, forgot to mention that: it only costs arout 20 quid.
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Old 3 Feb 2011
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Scotoilers

HI, i have always been a bit paranoid about getting chain oil on my tyres and have therefore avoided getting a scotoiler despite living only a few miles from their headquarters (nice people). I have good friends who love them. Would using one while off roading in sand creating grinding paste ? Leaving dry or WD40 is making more sense to me, but i don't know which is why i asked the questions. Andy
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Old 4 Feb 2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andysr6 View Post
Would using one while off roading in sand creating grinding paste ?
Short answer - yes!! Disconnected mine, it later caught fire whilst riding although this was not a problem to do with the Scottoiler! Great products away from sand though......
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