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Discussion Starter #481
Six days to the ride. I am riding today. I have only ridden once this past week because of rain. At this point I just need to stay limber. I am having to wear cool weather gear. I do not like wearing the restrictive clothing. I guess it's not that restrictive, I just don't like wearing it. LOL Hopefully, I won't need my rain jacket for the upcoming ride. It will make riding noisy.
 

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This is my kind of thread. I ride both MTB and road. I've raced a bunch of ultra endurance races here in CO and some of the bigger road bike rides like double-triple bypass.

My #1 bike is a 2013 Colnago Master 30th anniversary running Dura Ace 9000. It was my dream bike for years and I eventually was able to buy and build one. My wife also rides one of these, but a '99 in the white/blue AD paint. My main MTB is a 2010 Giant Trance SL0 running SRAM XX. I'm a bit odd but I like the 26" tire size and this bike still has lots of life in it. I have the Giant press tools to replace the pivot bearings myself. Also below is my Masi CXGR gravel bike which is built with a mix of Ultrega and GRX, soon to add their dual control hydro brake levers. It can run racks and fenders for commuting to work, or run gravel tires up to 1.9" diameter. Its a pretty quick and versatile bike.


Living in dry CO, a wax based chain lube is great here. It limits the attraction of dust to the chain and just keeps everything cleaner. I've been using Squirt, which is a wax lube suspension in water. Very easy to apply and it lasts for alot more miles than you guys are quoting. Generally I'm getting 500 miles per cleaning and about 250 between applications. I rotate chains every 1000 miles and keep 3 per bike to reduce the impact of chain stretching on the gears. That significantly increases chainring and cassette lifespan.
 

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Discussion Starter #483 (Edited)
The wax that counts is the wax in the chain, not the wax outside of the chain. This is why we quote the miles we do. If I cared about the wax on the outside I would only wax every 1,000 miles or so, or till the wax on the outside is gone. Since I am more concerned about roller wear, I wax every third ride or 120-150 miles which ever comes first. It's like the Jeep engine, if I spray oil on the block and don't put anything in the pan something is going to wear.
 

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The wax that counts is the wax in the chain, not the wax outside of the chain. This is why we quote the miles we do. If I cared about the wax on the outside I would only wax every 1,000 miles or so, or till the wax on the outside is gone. Since I am more concerned about roller wear, I wax every third ride or 120-150 miles which ever comes first. It's like the Jeep engine, if I spray oil on the block and don't put anything in the pan something is going to wear.

I understand the function of the chain lubricant. I was a bike mechanic for a very high end shop in Colorado while I was in college, and my degree is in Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Science. The shop's customers at the time included MTB world champions and Tour de France riders.

Squirt is a wax lubricant suspended in a water solution which came to market about a decade ago. Its easy to apply and you don't have to remove the chain to do it. You put a drop on each roller (don't just stream it onto the chain) and then run the chain about 20-30 rotations and wipe off any excess. It penetrates into the rollers until the water evaporates and then stays put. It tests extremely well in every magazine test, and like I said, you'll have longer intervals between reapplying in dry conditions. It just isn't all that well known. I've finished multiple 100mile MTB races on a single application of it and done well over 500 miles on a road bike on a single application if I don't get caught out in the rain. I've probably gotten 1000 miles from a single application on a road bike, but I've never thought to track it, which is a great endorsement. The stuff just works really well. A .5oz bottle is only $5 on Amazon if you want to try it and a 4oz bottle is only $12 and will probably last you several years.

I'm just suggesting it because I think you'll be really happy with it if you live in a area with dry lubricant is appropriate. I would never recommend changing just before a major ride, but I think you'll really like this product if you try it. I've ridden on alot of different products over the years and this has been the best by far for dry weather.

BTW, the wear issue with the chain on the gears is not due to dirty rollers. Over time, the force you exert on the chain causes it to stretch ever so slightly. As the chain stretches the links space further apart than the teeth in the cogs. This creates wear on the leading edge of the tooth as the roller rides into the cog, ultimately leading to misalignment on shifting. This stretching can be measured with a chain gauge. I believe end of chain life is .75mm of stretch occurs over 12 links. That's an almost imperceptible difference per link, but you can measure it with a gauge.
 

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Discussion Starter #485
I understand the function of the chain lubricant. I was a bike mechanic for a very high end shop in Colorado while I was in college, and my degree is in Metallurgical Engineering and Materials Science. The shop's customers at the time included MTB world champions and Tour de France riders.

Squirt is a wax lubricant suspended in a water solution which came to market about a decade ago. Its easy to apply and you don't have to remove the chain to do it. You put a drop on each roller (don't just stream it onto the chain) and then run the chain about 20-30 rotations and wipe off any excess. It penetrates into the rollers until the water evaporates and then stays put. It tests extremely well in every magazine test, and like I said, you'll have longer intervals between reapplying in dry conditions. It just isn't all that well known. I've finished multiple 100mile MTB races on a single application of it and done well over 500 miles on a road bike on a single application if I don't get caught out in the rain. I've probably gotten 1000 miles from a single application on a road bike, but I've never thought to track it, which is a great endorsement. The stuff just works really well. A .5oz bottle is only $5 on Amazon if you want to try it and a 4oz bottle is only $12 and will probably last you several years.

I'm just suggesting it because I think you'll be really happy with it if you live in a area with dry lubricant is appropriate. I would never recommend changing just before a major ride, but I think you'll really like this product if you try it. I've ridden on alot of different products over the years and this has been the best by far for dry weather.

BTW, the wear issue with the chain on the gears is not due to dirty rollers. Over time, the force you exert on the chain causes it to stretch ever so slightly. As the chain stretches the links space further apart than the teeth in the cogs. This creates wear on the leading edge of the tooth as the roller rides into the cog, ultimately leading to misalignment on shifting. This stretching can be measured with a chain gauge. I believe end of chain life is .75mm of stretch occurs over 12 links. That's an almost imperceptible difference per link, but you can measure it with a gauge.

Thanks, I know what Squirt is. I like waxing my chain the way I do it now. I have used all the gimmicky products over the years and I get longer chain life waxing my chains the way I do. Chain wear is .5 to .75. On an 11 speed it is .5, when it drops .5 the chain needs replacing. Wear on 10 speed and below have higher tolerances. Since I use 11 speed it's all I care about. Anyway to each his own. Time for me to ride.
 

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Discussion Starter #486
A couple days left to the 120. I have changed what I am eating the next couple days to insure the intestines are relatively empty. I feel better riding when they are. The temperatures won't be bad when the sun comes up, but when I leave it will be 40ºF. 48-50 would have been great then I could have worn shorts, but now I have to wear the long things I detest. Once the blood is flowing in my legs I don't feel the cold but until a few miles in I feel it. My upper body which is not moving and catching the air is what I try to keep warm.
I just don't like wearing the long stuff on my legs.

The wind won't be bad for half the ride, coming back it will be a bit gusty, but this is only bothersome along the Gulf where it is wide op and nothing to block wind except me. LOL


Where have the cyclist been? I have not heard from a couple of you all in a couple weeks. Maybe it's too cold to ride where you all are.
 

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Discussion Starter #487
My dirty, unsophisticated, no name, slow bike, with nice clean, waxed drive train is nearly ready for tomorrow. It just needs a water bottle and a rider, which will go on the bike tomorrow morning around 0400. The weather is still looking okay, still going to be 40F in the morning, and winds are forecasted to be a little breezier. I think the front coming thru arrived a little later. No matter the winds are still better than last years gale force winds. TTYL
 

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Discussion Starter #489
A couple of pics from the top of Dauphin Island bridge.
 

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Well... new chain coming. 800 miles on a gx eagle, which as it seems is about all anyone gets from that chain. Threw the checker on it and it failed the .75. Going to try out a xx1 eagle. Lighter, allegedly 2xs the wear resistance. We will see. I'll degrease it and wax it.

Was kind of hoping the gx would have lasted longer. But several internet sources all seemed to indicate 1200km/800mi was all they ever got. Seems the gx is an excellent chain for a mtb, especially at the price. But it doesn't last as long.
 

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Discussion Starter #493
Well... new chain coming. 800 miles on a gx eagle, which as it seems is about all anyone gets from that chain. Threw the checker on it and it failed the .75. Going to try out a xx1 eagle. Lighter, allegedly 2xs the wear resistance. We will see. I'll degrease it and wax it.

Was kind of hoping the gx would have lasted longer. But several internet sources all seemed to indicate 1200km/800mi was all they ever got. Seems the gx is an excellent chain for a mtb, especially at the price. But it doesn't last as long.

How many cogs on the back? If it's 11 cogs, you don't have to replace the chain till it drops .5.
What chain are you going to use now? I get good mileage on the Sram chains I use and they are cheap, around 18-22 bucks, and they shift better compared to the overpriced KMC chains, and Shimano chains.
I think it a Sram PC1130. Since I started waxing I get around 2,500 -3000 miles on them. I'm sure this will differ with a dirt bike with all the added debris.
 

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I haven't run the XX1, but my experience with chains is that usually one level down from the highest spec usually has the best durability. Shimano, SRAM, KMC and Campy all try to shave a few extra grams off the top of the line chain. They all do so with hollow pins and/or cutouts in the links and they all show some reduction in life between 20 and 50%. Fine if you're on a sponsored race team, but not so great if you've got a budget.

I have an XX bike, so I've experienced its 2X10 predecessor. It didn't last long and it took out my XX cassette with it. I wasn't paying close enough attention to the wear. An expensive lesson. I prefer the KMC 10 speed chains and run the ones with the gold titanium nitrite coatings on that bike. I don't like the blinginess of the gold, but I find that they hold the lubrication really well, are very durable and inexpensive.

However, I tried 11 speed KMC and the shape of the outer link clicks in the Ultegra and DuraAce cassettes. They're just a little too bulky. Which is kinda odd because based on what I've found KMC is manufacturing the top Ultegra/XT and DuraAce/XTR chains for Shimano currently. Our 11sp road bikes all run Shimano Ultegra/XT. Unfortunately I don't think they've got a 12 speed compatible chain right now.
 

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Interesting mrladelwig. My inclinations are generally like yours, a level below their top notch stuff. I was planning on getting the XO sram. Which would be at that just below level. Only two things changed my mind in this case: 1. I had read a couple places where the xx1 had more wear resistance and lasted longer, 2xs as long actually. 2. It looked and seemed identical to the XO chain, but it has the Ti Ni coating. Not a fan of the color, but maybe that had some play in the wear claims others had?

I'm not sure about any of it. I guess I will find out. I kind of liked the sound of the KMC dlc coated 12sp chains that they came out with. But they were uber $$$ and what few things out there about them was mixed at best.

I've been doing the chain wax lubes deal. No complaints. Can't say it made my gx chain last longer, but it did last as long as what others had claimed their chains maxed out at, which is good. I am going to try my wax with some ptfe (teflon) and molydisulfide added. Which would essentially make it the same as the molten speed wax products out there. Just for giggles and see.
 

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I'm not sure about any of it. I guess I will find out. I kind of liked the sound of the KMC dlc coated 12sp chains that they came out with. But they were uber $$$ and what few things out there about them was mixed at best.

The issue with those ultra hard coatings is that they don't change how the chain stretches with use. The stretching of the chain isn't because of wear at the pins and rollers. It is because the links themselves have very slight inelastic yield with use. I don't know the exact make up or heat treatment and work applied to the steel used in chains, but they get stamped out and move at high volume, so can't be too fancy. My guess is that the steel is deforming at the grain boundaries where it is weaker than the overall rating of the steel. When the links have part of their structure reduced, that increases the psi of the remaining steel, which increases the rate of inelastic yield, microscopic as it may be. I don't think hollow pins have any impact on this, they're just weaker and have more opportunity to fail when loaded cross-chained. As a bigger cyclist those are the reasons I have reservations about the flyweight chains.



The Ti Ni coating doesn't make the chain last longer because of mechanical wear resistance as it is used in tools like drill bits. In fact that would actually make it a bit worse on the cog teeth. It has a bit of texture which holds the lubrication on the chain better which reduces the wear the chain creates on the gears and keeps it quiet, which reduces the wear on your brain.


That goes to the other part of the equation. The chain does create wear on the gears (and to a slight, but less important degree to the rollers). When the chain is carrying debris, it can then use it like sandpaper on the faces of the gears it contacts. That's why it is important to use the correct type of lubrication for conditions and keep the chain clean. A wet lubrication will shed the debris with use in wet or muddy weather, but is greasy and attracts and retains dirt and sand in dry conditions. A dry formulation lubrication can break down and get washed away in wet weather. This wear is compounded as the chain stretches because the contact sits deeper into the tooth as the tooth seats into the chain, scraping the tooth surface and galling the metal. This wear shows up as ridges on the outer edges of the contacting face of the cog. As those teeth shift further back in the profile, the shift ramps no longer align, and shifting becomes less precise.
 

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New cassette for me.....:bad-words:banghead:

It has been crappy weather here, so not much riding. Few posts ago I posted I had to have a new chain, old one measured .75. Thought that I would have been good to go with the GX cassette. Nope.... New chain has about 80 miles on it max and it slips/skips teeth horribly in the 10 tooth cog, and it did a few times in a lower gear just not sure which one. Expensive A$$ lesson that also equated in me getting a different chain checker that has a .5 measurement on it which I will go with from now on.

Bad thing is I have looked and looked at the cassette I have and yea I can see some wear... but not THAT bad to me. I would have thought I at least would have gotten another chain or season out of it. I will compare it to the replacement. In the meantime I went over everything, all the other components are fine and adjusted. Surely this is not a reflection of the wax lube I am using.... too many people use it and like it. I guess I just let junk get too worn too quick (~800 miles, mostly off road dry conditions with some dust). Oh well I guess. Found a good deal on a XO1 eagle 10-50 cassette. So it will be an upgrade with lighter weight.
 
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