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Paraffin based chain lube

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I haven't had a non-o-ring chain in years, so I never think much about chain lube.  I recently bought a bike that came with a non-o-ring chain and was wondering what to lube it with.  I remember when I was a kid my dad told me about people dipping their bicycle chains in hot paraffin wax as a lubricant.  Being a dry material when cool instead of a wet oily or greasy coating seems like it would stay in & on the chain and remain a lot cleaner.

I just Googled paraffin chain lube and see that bicycle riders have recently re-discovered using paraffin, in fact it is claimed to be more energy efficient than liquid lubes.  I think they might be adding friction reducing powders, like Teflon to the paraffin.

Anyway, I know MX racers prefer non-o-ring chains.  Just wondering if any of them use paraffin?

I'm going to give it a try.

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They already make a wax spray chain lube. O-ring or not. Used it alot. Not too messy. Directions say ride the bike to get the chain hot and then apply. Gold can, Maxima I think.

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All I have ever used is maxima chain wax. Got 100 hrs out of my last o ring chain/sprockets so I feel like it’s working well, plus it makes far less of a mess than chain oil.

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I'm thinking that soaking the chain in molten wax would allow it to penetrate inside the rollers and between the side plates much better than a spray.  I'm going to the grocery store in a few minutes and will let you know how it goes.  

 

Btw, a few years ago I had used solid carnuba wax as a high temp coating on a steel motorcycle headed that was get ugly and rusty.  I cleaned away the rust with steel wool, then started the bike to heat the exhaust pipe.  After it got hot I turned off the engine and rubbed a chunk of wax on the pipe & wiped it with a thick wad of paper towel to spread it over the pipe.  It worked great as a high temp finish, and it lasted quite a while.  Carnuba wax is the only type that will work because it has such a high melting/burning point.  Glassblowers use it to lube their glassworking tools.  

I'd try it on the chain, but I don't have any right now.  It's really hard and brittle at room temp.  It would probably work quite well on a chain.  Maybe next time,

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On both my bikes but specifically the CRF with a non oring chain I use Maxima Chain Guard before every ride.

Also use Maxima Chain CleanUp before washing, then carefully wipe off excess water and use Maxima MPPL to displace water and have about 100hrs on my drive train but I'll replace next spring.

My 2cents

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1 hour ago, dittohead said:

All I have ever used is maxima chain wax. Got 100 hrs out of my last o ring chain/sprockets so I feel like it’s working well, plus it makes far less of a mess than chain oil.

I have gotten 100 hours with very little lube. Mostly just after  washing for rust prevention.Ive seen WAY over 100 with no lube on a friends bike. 

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A racer runs a non-oring chain because it has less drag. Any thick lubricant (grease or wax) adds drag and collects dirt. The racer that can actually make use of the lack of drag of a non-oring over a oring chain also replaces it constantly, as often as some change oil. For the rest of the world, a oring chain is what you should run.

Back in the 1960's, we did not have oring chains. So for regular people, it was a constant cleaning in kerosene and then soaking the chain in a pot of grease heated on a hot plate.  Take the chain out, hang it from the rafter over the pot over night to cool. Sort of like air filter rituals today. Total PITA. Then tacky spray lubes came on the market and soon there after, oring chains.

A quality oring chains, kept more or less clean and properly adjusted will last a surprisingly long time. The only lube I apply is to prevent rust. Some clean this 'storage coating' off before a ride to avoid dirt adhering.

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I have gotten 100 hours with very little lube. Mostly just after  washing for rust prevention.Ive seen WAY over 100 with no lube on a friends bike. 

I sold the bike so I only wanted to claim what I personally had on the chain and sprockets. They were still in great shape when i sold it with lots of life left

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Maxima chain wax is the good stuff.  I stopped lubing my oring chains a while ago with no adverse effect but I still do hit my street bike chain with it occasionally. 

Oring dirt bike chains are lasting years.  I replace the sprockets when they start to show wear but the chain itself will go through a few fronts and rears before it starts to stretch.

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16 hours ago, William1 said:

Back in the 1960's, we did not have oring chains. So for regular people, it was a constant cleaning in kerosene and then soaking the chain in a pot of grease heated on a hot plate.  Take the chain out, hang it from the rafter over the pot over night to cool. Sort of like air filter rituals today. Total PITA. Then tacky spray lubes came on the market and soon there after, oring chains.

 

That's what the used 50 wt. out of the Harleys was for back when I worked in bike shops.  After cleaning with kerosene the chains were then soaked in the warmed up oil.

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I've been using Maxima chain wax for both street and now my dirtbikes for years and years, at least 20 years of dirtbiking.  I think it works very well as even in the dirt/mud/sand, my chain and sprockets seem to last a long time.  

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I've used it and don't care for it. On the street bikes it's a gummy mess , too.  It also stinks in a closed space.   :smirk:

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