Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

New to Cycling? Want some advice? Start here...
Bullet1
Posts: 91
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:21 pm

Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby Bullet1 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 14:55 pm

After being somewhat of a fair weather cyclist of the past year i've decided to MTFU and get out a fair bit more in winter come rain or shine.

My current bike with upgrades etc would be worth £1,400 new - probably a much better bike than I am a cyclist!

Given the weather I'm faced with two options if I still wish to get out
1. Buy a winter bike (Triban 3 or Carrera Virtuoso or TdF) for £300
2. Spend a significant more time cleaning my current bike after each wet ride.

So thoughts?

If I take option 2 based on 2 to 3 rides a week, what ongoing maintentence / cleaning would you do and how often?

User avatar
smidsy
Posts: 5256
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 20:52 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby smidsy » Thu Jan 03, 2013 15:09 pm

Maintenance and cleaning do not change just because you get a cheap bike.

Ride what you have and look after it properly.
Yellow is the new Black.

User avatar
schweiz
Posts: 1618
Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2008 18:51 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby schweiz » Thu Jan 03, 2013 15:26 pm

smidsy wrote:Maintenance and cleaning do not change just because you get a cheap bike.

Ride what you have and look after it properly.


+1

or buy a cheap bike and look after it properly! It'll still be expensive to replace drivetrain components, even on a cheap bike and If the drivetrain is wrecked then it'll be a PITA to ride with the chain jumping and skipping about.

Mystique
Posts: 329
Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2005 13:00 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby Mystique » Thu Jan 03, 2013 15:40 pm

Treat yourself to a pair of Raceblades (other clip-on mudguards are available) and get out there. I ride my Look 555 year-round and the post-ride clean & lube takes no more than 10 minutes.

User avatar
elderone
Posts: 1290
Joined: Wed Oct 17, 2012 21:01 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby elderone » Thu Jan 03, 2013 15:49 pm

What some call a cheap bike is some one elses pride and joy and should be maintained regardless of cost.
Be a bit silly having a crash due to an ill maintained cheap bike,just to keep a better bike clean.
Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori

Bullet1
Posts: 91
Joined: Wed Feb 03, 2010 12:21 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby Bullet1 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 15:51 pm

Yep - yet the poinit re a bike is a bike, still needs cleaning etc

What do you do to clean / lube?

User avatar
schweiz
Posts: 1618
Joined: Sun Aug 31, 2008 18:51 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby schweiz » Thu Jan 03, 2013 16:34 pm

I've been using the same 2 litre cannister of turtlewax car shampoo for years. You only need a splash in a bucket.

Lube, I use Finish Line Ceramic Wet, but everyone will have their favourite.

User avatar
smidsy
Posts: 5256
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 20:52 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby smidsy » Thu Jan 03, 2013 16:40 pm

Basically its a case of keeping things cleaned and lubed.

Nothing fancy just make sure that you clean off the crud and re-apply lube to those things that should be lubed. e.g chain, cables, pivot points.

As for cleaning products and types of lube ... well thats a whole 2 other threads and both have been covered extensively on here many times in the past :-) Search is your friend.
Yellow is the new Black.

User avatar
Brian B
Posts: 1942
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 21:33 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby Brian B » Thu Jan 03, 2013 16:53 pm

My winter bike is my old summer bike. Its a good bike and have been riding it for four winters now but take really good care of it and ensure its always clean and lubed.

I ride my winter bike from Novemember to March and due to the crap weather we have had in Blighty the only real difference between summer and winter is the salt on road and thats what you need to take care off due to the corrosion effect.
Brian B.

JamesEs
Posts: 680
Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2011 07:09 am

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby JamesEs » Thu Jan 03, 2013 17:06 pm

Mudguards are your friend! I fitted a pair of Crud Roadracers recently, can't believe how much of a difference they make! Almost nothing makes it onto the frame, and less than that onto the cranks, brakes and derailleurs. Cleaning is now a 10 minute job, quick wipe down of the frame and degrease/re-lube of the chain is all that's needed. Cheaper than getting a winter bike, too!

User avatar
prawny
Posts: 4979
Joined: Wed Nov 26, 2008 21:10 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby prawny » Thu Jan 03, 2013 19:59 pm

Neither, like me. I noticed this morning that my Rhigos is filthy, but its for riding not looking at. A quick hose down, wipe of the excess water WD40 on the chain and a spurt of lube. Cassette is black, wheels are minging and my bar tape is ripped. A poor show all round, but I mostly ride in the dark anyway.
Saracen Dirttrax Disc
Saracen Tenet 3 - 2015
Voodoo Bizango - 2014

bails1310
Posts: 330
Joined: Tue Aug 09, 2011 08:35 am

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby bails1310 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 20:44 pm

I'm a winter bike man I'm afraid.

I commute every day, circa 100-150 miles a week so the thought of my pride and joy getting filthy (crud catchers do help) didn't appeal.

I got a £300 Raleigh from eBay, brand new and I know as long as I give her a little TLC once a week she will be fine.

I has to work bloody hard to get the best bike so just want to keep it in good nick, that's just me though.
Kuota Kharma Race [Dry/Sunny]
Raleigh Airlite 100 [Wet/Horrible]

User avatar
smidsy
Posts: 5256
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 20:52 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby smidsy » Thu Jan 03, 2013 20:49 pm

We were not saying that winter bikes are a bad idea (hell I have one) just making the point that you still need to clean and maintain it if you want it to perform and get you where you want to go.

The Op seemed to suggest it was either a winter bike or cleaning and maintenance, which is simply folly.
Yellow is the new Black.

Simon Masterson
Posts: 2488
Joined: Sun Jul 15, 2012 15:52 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby Simon Masterson » Thu Jan 03, 2013 21:25 pm

If you're going to get a 'winter bike', at least get something that's particularly good for the job. An old steel racer (for example) might cost you £20, £50, £100 or £400 (+), but you should be able to get something that takes full guards and a rack (if desired) and has clearance for 35-38mm tyres, which allows both bigger tyres for durability, grip and ride comfort, and snow tyres if need be. I don't know the exact details, but certainly the Triban does not look as if it fulfills the above criteria. Winter cycling is a great deal more enjoyable with mudguards and tougher tyres with better grip, but given the frequency of precipitation in our green and pleasant land I don't know why you would have only one bike with tyres best suited to dry conditions, and frankly a bit of puncture protection is no bad thing unless the roads near you are much better than the ones near me. In other words, if your tyres can handle a British summer and a British autumn, they can probably handle a British winter as well...

Otherwise, just keep your bike clean and lubricated.

Whether anyone likes it or not, unless your bike is very high end with a top-end groupset (the consumables for which though expensive ironically may well end up more durable than cheaper ones), carbon wheels with expensive featherlight silk tubs, and other expensive appointments, being unable to bear to ride it in winter is vain more than anything else. You could ride it regularly from October until February without so much as a drop of oil and it would probably be fine; anyone would think that road bikes disintegrate at the sight of a dark cloud.

It just isn't that hard to keep a bike in good basic nick. It's already been said, but keeping chains clean (degreasing not necessarily required but a good idea) and lubricated, brake pivots similar (I've read that GT-85 works well for this but haven't tried it personally; mine just get a drop of oil here and there) and the rest of the bike clean (using some form of soapy water, car shampoo or bike wash), can go a very long way. No smothering bikes in solvents or frantically rushing it to the workstand as soon as you get in (if you can do that you didn't work hard enough!), or anything drastic. It can take you sitting on it; it's tougher than you think. ;)

(I use Green Oil products, by the way. They are excellent. I'd be happy to recommend Finish Line Cross Country to anyone, though; it's cheap, it's available and it works very well.

pswinfield
Posts: 15
Joined: Tue Jul 08, 2008 09:13 am

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby pswinfield » Fri Jan 04, 2013 00:22 am

I fell on my Bianchi the other day in the rain and the bill for sorting it out is going to be the price of a really decent winter bike! In retrospect I should have got a winter hack with more durable bits.

night_porter
Posts: 887
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:17 am

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby night_porter » Fri Jan 04, 2013 07:43 am

My best bike is carbon with a Red groupset on it and my winter commuter has Tiagra. Last month I had a fall on ice and have had to replace the Tiagra shifters. The total cost of the repair was about £90 as I did it myself but if I had fallen on the best bike the bill could have cost considerably more.

Of the bikes you mention I know that the Carrera Virtuoso will take SKS type full mudguards and like others have said this will protect your bike an enormous amount and reduce the amount of cleaning you need to do. The groupset is Shimano 2200 so repairs are likely to be cheaper too so this is what I do/recommend.

cougie
Posts: 19008
Joined: Wed Apr 21, 2004 22:34 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby cougie » Fri Jan 04, 2013 12:46 pm

I ride a fixed wheel for the winter.
It has full proper mudguards on so its less messy for me to ride.
Its got less bits to clean than my summer bike.
Its also a lot cheaper - I came off on the ice last year - that would have been expensive on my good bike.

I will hose it down after nasty rides but thats about it.

If i was taking my best bike out - I'd have to be a lot more thorough on cleaning and then polishing it. My mate is a bit slack on cleaning and he let the road salt corrode the nice finish on his groupset.

User avatar
ovi
Posts: 271
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2012 19:11 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby ovi » Fri Jan 04, 2013 16:32 pm

I've just come back from a ride and I took this photo half way through, would you want a good bike to get like this?
The chainset and rear derailleur is right up the naffs. You could stick to the main roads where its cleaner but I like to be a bit adventurous with my old bike.
on my rides
Image

Uploaded with ImageShack.us

User avatar
smidsy
Posts: 5256
Joined: Tue Jan 17, 2012 20:52 pm

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby smidsy » Fri Jan 04, 2013 17:39 pm

ovi wrote:I've just come back from a ride and I took this photo half way through, would you want a good bike to get like this?
The chainset and rear derailleur is right up the naffs. You could stick to the main roads where its cleaner but I like to be a bit adventurous with my old bike.
on my rides
Image

Uploaded with ImageShack.us


BUT you will still clean and lube it will you not?

The OP seemed to think that if he got a winter bike it removed the need for maintenance and cleaning...or at least that is how it came across to me, which is why I gave the response I did. 8)
Yellow is the new Black.

night_porter
Posts: 887
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 10:17 am

Re: Winter Hack or Cleaning Decent Bike

Postby night_porter » Sat Jan 05, 2013 00:34 am

smidsy wrote:
The OP seemed to think that if he got a winter bike it removed the need for maintenance and cleaning...or at least that is how it came across to me, which is why I gave the response I did. 8)


Cleaning a winter bike takes significantly less time than cleaning your best bike and I think that is what he meant.

My winter bike gets a weekly Muc Off wash and brush up with an extra wipe dry and relube of the drivetrain if I ride home in pouring rain. The frame and wheels are alloy so they will not rust but the drivetrain is not.

If I rode my best bike it would get the full works including dismantling polishing most things after every ride and considering I get home at half past midnight that just would not happen.

Winter bikes for commuting are a must and can be used at the weekends too if it is really horrible out. Much better than looking out of the window and deciding not to ride.


Return to “Road Beginners”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest