Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Muddy day of riding destroyed my chain - how to clean?

Recommended Posts

I had a riding day from hell and caked my entire bike in thick red clay/mud. I take care of my DID 520 O-ring chain ($110) meticulously and I was quite upset after this ride. My drive from the trail was about 2 hours to which I immediately hosed the chain down as best I could and sprayed with chain lube.

The chain was completely covered in rust. I soaked it overnight that same day in Mineral spirits (out of Kerosene) and that didn't seem to help. WD40 and a brass wire brush seem to do the trick on the outside links, but I am unable to get every corner on each internal link.

Is there some chemical out there that will cut this rust out and not ruin the O-rings? Something that I can soak for a couple hours and spray it down with compressed air? If I spend all day on the chain with the wire brush and WD40 I might get most of it clean but I'm looking at a much more efficient method. Thanks!

PS - Any other methods to get caked mud off metal/engine parts? Simple green did a decent job but I'm hoping for other opinions. Diesel/Kerosene?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

why do you care if it rusts on the outside?

I've cleaned my chain 0 times in 35 years of riding

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
you have been riding since 3 years old? dang!!!

HAHHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAH :smirk:

He cares about his chain, cause some actually like their stuff to be nice and clean, and to function good as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the sides of your chain being dirty do not have anything to do with function

i've been riding sense I was 5, I rounded, surprised anyone cared about that extra year

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not trying to be a smart ass, but what did you have on your chain before the ride? I am surprised that you see rust that quick. What ever you had on it doesnt sound like it did much.

As for the rust, it sounds like you've done about as much as you can....brush and soak.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Not trying to be a smart ass, but what did you have on your chain before the ride? I am surprised that you see rust that quick. What ever you had on it doesnt sound like it did much.

As for the rust, it sounds like you've done about as much as you can....brush and soak.

I use Maxima chain wax. After every wash, I dry the chain completely with compressed air and lube it. I then lube it before I ride as well.... since the frustration with the rusted chain. My buddy's stock WR chain rusted just as bad if not worse.

Any actual tips?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
why do you care if it rusts on the outside?

I've cleaned my chain 0 times in 35 years of riding

Because I have a new $7,000 bike and don't want to be riding around with a brown and orange nasty rusted chain.

I'm happy you haven't cleaned your chain since you were 5 years old. Not really sure how that helps my situation but bravo :smirk:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Because I have a new $7,000 bike and don't want to be riding around with a brown and orange nasty rusted chain.

I'm happy you haven't cleaned your chain since you were 5 years old. Not really sure how that helps my situation but bravo :smirk:

Got any pics. I can't imagine it getting too bad if you are cleaning it and lubing it the way you are. I'm like mega, I don't go out of my way to clean my chain, the way I see it, any extra effort to get the outside real clean with chemicals and such is just going to compromise the o-ring seal and the internal lubrication that is sealed in at the factory. IMHO, soaking it in mineral spirits is a bad idea. Just get the surface dirt off and lube it and be done with it. I don't have an issue with a rusty chain. I wonder if your extra meticulous cleaning methods are actually the cause of your problems?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Got any pics. I can't imagine it getting too bad if you are cleaning it and lubing it the way you are. I'm like mega, I don't go out of my way to clean my chain, the way I see it, any extra effort to get the outside real clean with chemicals and such is just going to compromise the o-ring seal and the internal lubrication that is sealed in at the factory. IMHO, soaking it in mineral spirits is a bad idea. Just get the surface dirt off and lube it and be done with it. I don't have an issue with a rusty chain. I wonder if your extra meticulous cleaning methods are actually the cause of your problems?

I'll take pictures this evening. I lube it to make it easier to rinse off after I ride. The fact that the hardened red clay sat in the sun on the 2 hour drive probably caused it to rust. My front sprocket and wheel bearings both accumulated surface rust. This stuff was nasty! To give you an idea, here's a shot from the gopro after about 30 minutes of scraping the mud off the bike in order to get moving again:

img20110521201829.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I ride through more water than most (go through a set of brake pads in 5 rides, not even heavy on them). I have never had the chain rust! I use carb cleaner and a toothbrush to quicly clean my NON SEALED chain, then use napa chain and cable lube after every ride. Often, the bike will sit wet for up to 10 hrs before i re-oil it, no rust!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Next time go with a Gold chain. The surface doesn't rust until the gold plating wears off.

That's the chain I have and I can defintely attest to you that the gold can rust. I have the best/most expensive chain on the readily available market.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That's the chain I have and I can defintely attest to you that the gold can rust. I have the best/most expensive chain on the readily available market.

Thats the funny thing. You spent $110 on a chain, probably that much on sprockets too, while i got my hd non sealed 520 chain and steel sprockets for $60 together and have never had a problem! :smirk:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Thats the funny thing. You spent $110 on a chain, probably that much on sprockets too, while i got my hd non sealed 520 chain and steel sprockets for $60 together and have never had a problem! :smirk:

It happened to my buddy's stock chain on his WR and his looked a lot worse :smirk:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It happened to my buddy's stock chain on his WR and his looked a lot worse :smirk:

What are you even talking about?:smirk:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What are you even talking about?:smirk:

My buddy who rode in the same conditions experienced a rusted chain as well.

For the love of Buddah, does anyone have any insight to this?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
That's the chain I have and I can defintely attest to you that the gold can rust. I have the best/most expensive chain on the readily available market.

so do I. I let mine sit outside in -40C weather all winter long.

the new DID 150$ gold chain was so rusted I almost quit dirtbiking!!

I ignored it, rode the hell out of it 4-5 times, and it looks almost new again :smirk:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
so do I. I let mine sit outside in -40C weather all winter long.

the new DID 150$ gold chain was so rusted I almost quit dirtbiking!!

I ignored it, rode the hell out of it 4-5 times, and it looks almost new again :smirk:

Did you try and penetrate the rust with WD40 or equivalent? I know WD40 won't penetrate the sealed o-rings (beyond popular belief) and I can't think of anything else that would naturally break it down along with riding.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Reply with:

Sign in to follow this  

×