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Tempered Steel in chains

Factories aren't the cleanest of environments and the packing grease is so tacky it picks up everything...
You're emitting generalities with no substantiation. If you haven't chemically analyzed your colored soapy water you can't really say anything meaningful about the cause or nature of the coloration. Grease is often (usually) colored as produced. Factories can run from squeaky clean to garbage pits.
 

velocipedist

Lubrication Sensei
Jul 11, 2006
543
640
Rainbow City Alabama
Curious how long your perceived effects last.

I get the cleaner/quieter part, but your ptfe/teflon solution is lasting what 400mi? There is nothing to bond or bind the lubricant to the chain long term.

Wouldn't a proper heat treat oven and a boron nitride lubricant (eg die/mold release agent) provide superior long term results?

While the cosmetic gains are easy to evaluate, long term performance gains vs pain of prep, wet lube for me until I find a used oven.

And considering at what stage in manufacturing a chain is likely to be greased, ie after assembly prior to packaging, it seems highly unlikely to me that your brand new chains are truely contaminated in anyway.

YMMV, koolaid tastes good.
 
Jun 5, 2022
19
3
@velocipedist, there's many different additives you can use or is used for waxing. Including hexagonal boron nitride, even different waxes can be used.

It's just the wax is used as a carrier for the additives that actually provide the lubrication and keep it in place.

And of course you can top up with a liquid chain wax when needed, just oil and waxes don't mix well together.

I know that chains will be greased some time after fabrication, but there's no telling how long that may be.

If you have the time though a really long soak in an oil based degreaser agitating it often, followed by a decent scrub with dish soap/washing up liquid and water to remove some of the oil and then soaking/agitating in isopropyl alcohol is the most gentle way of cleaning a chain.

But that's more time consuming...
 

velocipedist

Lubrication Sensei
Jul 11, 2006
543
640
Rainbow City Alabama
So all your effort is for the initial 400mi peformance gains?

Wax is a carrier? Still doesn't actually bond your additive to the metal in any functional manner, so it has no longevity.

I am curious about the science, but extremely suspicious when it appears to lacking, and the majority of readily available information is from manufacturers or fervent fans.

If you are aware of actual peer reviewed science on chain lubricants that isn't only looking at wax and through rose colored glasses I am interested.

But its time vs benefit wax is worse than tubless which I am too lazy to faff with.


@velocipedist, there's many different additives you can use or is used for waxing. Including hexagonal boron nitride, even different waxes can be used.

It's just the wax is used as a carrier for the additives that actually provide the lubrication and keep it in place.

And of course you can top up with a liquid chain wax when needed, just oil and waxes don't mix well together.

I know that chains will be greased some time after fabrication, but there's no telling how long that may be.

If you have the time though a really long soak in an oil based degreaser agitating it often, followed by a decent scrub with dish soap/washing up liquid and water to remove some of the oil and then soaking/agitating in isopropyl alcohol is the most gentle way of cleaning a chain.

But that's more time consuming...
 
I think that if I tried to experiment with wax at all, I'd devise a sprocket and motor that would turn very slowly so as to allow a chain to be run slowly through a solvent bath, then hot wax, for about an hour each. It'd get complicated so as not to wind up with wax buildup on said sprocket.

It still sounds like too much of a PITA to put the time into, I'd prefer to spend the same time riding.
 

HardtailHack

used an iron once
Jan 20, 2009
5,010
3,093
I have a hot wax pot, it's got slickoleum, moly powder, PTFE powder and some metho in it.

Seemed to work, but lubing a dirty chain and wiping it with a rag is easier.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
50,180
15,632
Sleazattle
I curate several artisanal bees nests and dust the bees with nano PTFE particles. The resulting wax is good for 500 watts. A good lanolin taint butter also cuts arse friction by 137%.
 

OGRipper

back alley ripper
Feb 3, 2004
10,460
901
NORCAL is the hizzle
Sucks when extra effort intended to help ends up biting you in the ass.

I just run the factory lube for a ride or two, do a relatively cursory clean/wipe off, and apply whatever lube I happen to have at the moment. Seems to work just fine and is consistent with my general approach of minimal maintenance/not messing with shit that works. But I do replace chains fairly often to avoid needing new cassettes and chainrings.
 
Jun 5, 2022
19
3
So all your effort is for the initial 400mi peformance gains?

Wax is a carrier? Still doesn't actually bond your additive to the metal in any functional manner, so it has no longevity.

I am curious about the science, but extremely suspicious when it appears to lacking, and the majority of readily available information is from manufacturers or fervent fans.

If you are aware of actual peer reviewed science on chain lubricants that isn't only looking at wax and through rose colored glasses I am interested.

But its time vs benefit wax is worse than tubless which I am too lazy to faff with.
So you haven't heard that chain waxing is used by the non MTB folks?

Look at the fastest cyclists in the world and you'll see they all wax there chains for performance and drivetrain longevity, I even believe there's been research on this as well.

Check friction facts and zero friction cycling.

The main point of waxing is that it doesn't attract contaminants like wet lubes do, and even though time consuming it's easy to do.

And if you use the basic paraffin wax and PTFE method relatively cheap, then it can of course be topped up with a wax lube as and when necessary.
 
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slimshady

¡Mira, una ardilla!
So you haven't heard that chain waxing is used by the non MTB folks?

Look at the fastest cyclists in the world and you'll see they all wax there chains for performance and drivetrain longevity, I even believe there's been research on this as well.

Check friction facts and zero friction cycling.
Those studies are the closest thing I've seen to the "spherical horse with zero friction" we used to see in the problems from my Physics 101 class. Plus MTBs see a heck more dirt and stretching from suspension action and uneven pedaling.
 
Jun 5, 2022
19
3
@slimshady, if suspension travel on a full suss is causing a chain to stretch it's shorter than it needs to be.

Chain length needs to be set when the rear swingarm is at full travel.
 

jonKranked

Detective Dookie
Nov 10, 2005
80,427
19,773
media blackout
Look at the fastest cyclists in the world and you'll see they all have their team mechanics wax THEIR chains for performance and drivetrain longevity, I even believe there's been research on this as well.
at that level they're looking for every fraction of a watt they can.

joe six pack that has to stuff himself into his lycra like a bratwurst isn't gonna have noticeable benefits from it.
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
50,180
15,632
Sleazattle
at that level they're looking for every fraction of a watt they can.

joe six pack that has to stuff himself into his lycra like a bratwurst isn't gonna have noticeable benefits from it.
And even then a lot of those performance gains have more of a placebo effect than anything..

I always chuckle at the roadies who who will do anything to lose a fraction of a gram then will wear a gold chain with a gold cross. Jebus is good for 15 watts ya know.
 

velocipedist

Lubrication Sensei
Jul 11, 2006
543
640
Rainbow City Alabama
Woosh...

So did you ever find peer reviewed science for these claims?

Similar to the industry/koolaid links you provided, UFO chains (and likely similar molten wax methods) appear to lose their performance gains at around 400mi, which makes sense as there is no chemical/covalent/van der waals bond between your ptfe/hBN/teflon to the metal of your chain.

Therefore, other than cleanliness and the zen of waxing(?), seems like a bunch of wasted time one could be riding bicycles in the woods.

Enjoy, you obviously do.

It is curious to me that "Gomi" no sensei
is into cleanliness, bit of an oxymoron no?

So you haven't heard that chain waxing is used by the non MTB folks?

Look at the fastest cyclists in the world and you'll see they all wax there chains for performance and drivetrain longevity, I even believe there's been research on this as well.

Check friction facts and zero friction cycling.

The main point of waxing is that it doesn't attract contaminants like wet lubes do, and even though time consuming it's easy to do.

And if you use the basic paraffin wax and PTFE method relatively cheap, then it can of course be topped up with a wax lube as and when necessary.
 

Jm_

sled dog's bollocks
Jan 14, 2002
16,683
7,609
AK
So you haven't heard that chain waxing is used by the non MTB folks?

Look at the fastest cyclists in the world and you'll see they all wax there chains for performance and drivetrain longevity, I even believe there's been research on this as well.

Check friction facts and zero friction cycling.

The main point of waxing is that it doesn't attract contaminants like wet lubes do, and even though time consuming it's easy to do.

And if you use the basic paraffin wax and PTFE method relatively cheap, then it can of course be topped up with a wax lube as and when necessary.
And waxing works great until you encounter a stream or any significant mud. Then it washes off and your chain is like a rusty 1940 ford pickup. Break out the motor-oil and douse that chain to cut through the mud. I don't give a shit what all the fastest cyclists on the tour de france are using.

But it's amazing how clean our bikes stay in the winter in the snow. It's as if the snow self-cleans the bike and drivetrain and they shift and perform like amazing-balls. Dry/wax lubes are king there. We can go a long time between applications too. In AZ I would get similar effects, except the sandy streams with water would have a quick negative effect, being so abrasive and contrary to wax, but generally wax worked pretty decent there too.

Then again, I don't do roadie shit where 5 watts over 100 miles matters.
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Jun 5, 2022
19
3
It's a shame that when some come across ideas different and contradictory to their own they do everything to discredit them.
 

velocipedist

Lubrication Sensei
Jul 11, 2006
543
640
Rainbow City Alabama
Contradictory/discredit?

And here I thought robust discussion was created from challenging one anothers ideas.

And you seem to misunderstand me, I am going to coat a chain with hBN and heat treat it to 1000℃ and hold for 10min to covalently bond the lubricant to the metal chain surface. These lubricants are great, but lacking an actual binder as in molten wax means it will wear/slough off too quickly for longterm performance benefit.

I agree with the principle and science behind spherical lubricants, but not actually bonding it to your substrate seems like alot of effort for middling and short lived performance benefits at best. You seem to think my skepticism somehow effects your enjoyment of your wax, not at all I was simply trying to point out that the lack of actual peer reviewed science shows that while the effect might be real, longterm effect is questionable.

My tongue in cheek tone was and is directed at your proselytization of molten wax, not your use of it.

Rou no sensei enjoy your waxy self.

It's a shame that when some come across ideas different and contradictory to their own they do everything to discredit them.
 
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Contradictory/discredit?

And here I thought robust discussion was created from challenging one anothers ideas.

And you seem to misunderstand me, I am going to coat a chain with hBN and heat treat it to 1000℃ and hold for 10min to covalently bond the lubricant to the metal chain surface. These lubricants are great, but lacking an actual binder as in molten wax means it will wear/slough off too quickly for longterm performance benefit.

I agree with the principle and science behind spherical lubricants, but not actually bonding it to your substrate seems like alot of effort for middling and short lived performance benefits at best. You seem to think my skepticism somehow effects your enjoyment of your wax, not at all I was simply trying to point out that the lack of actual peer reviewed science shows that while the effect might be real, longterm effect is questionable.

My tongue in cheek tone was and is directed at your proselytization of molten wax, not your use of it.

Rousoku no sensei enjoy your waxy self.
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