Todays training was again gentle, 3 hours ride on the mtb. 50% of it was on dirt and the rest yet again around the cradle of humankind. Tomorrow rest and sunday we are meeting with Grand and Stuart at Northern farms to get some mud into our noblies. Below a very interesting article on bike cleaning!
Wash your bike - no fuss
Mike Naperlusky has been a full-time mechanic for the Volvo/Cannondale team for four years. His role is to prep both the cross-country and downhill rigs for such world-class athletes. In other words, he knows a thing a two about how to apply tender loving care to dirtied-up mountain bikes. We chased Naperlusky down at the World Championships in Vail to get his best tips on how to get your mountain bike clean-using water. Before Washing. "The best part of my day is when I get to wash a bike. It's my private time with the bike when I'm able to inspect it closely. Before I wash a bike, I apply Pedro's Bio-Degreaser or Clean Green on the chain. I avoid spraying any part of the bike with direct water pressure, and I always take extra precautions with the bike's electronics.
We use silicone around the water-bottle mounts to help prevent water from seeping into the frame. You can use soap and water, but I use Pedro's degreaser with the cross-country bikes. On DH bikes, I use straight water and Pro-Clean, which is a motorcycle cleanser that won't affect the disc-brake pads. We run carbon seatposts, so that's the first part of the bike I wash. That way, when I put the bike in the bike stand, it won't get scratched."
Brush Gently. "I use a sponge to wash down the frame, but the dirtier parts of the bike definitely need a brush-especially if you want to do the job right. My personal favorite is the Pedro's Big Brush. I use two brushes on the wheels: one for the chain and cogs and one for the rims and hubs. If you're running fork boots, it's a good idea to squeeze them to eject any water that might be inside." The Finishing Touches. "Lastly, make sure you dry the whole bike off-don't let it sit wet. I wipe the bike down right after I clean it with a clean, dry cloth, and then always lube the chain. I never bother lubing the cables because we replace them every two weeks. I've been washing bikes with water for years and I've never had a problem. Remember, a clean bike is the first step to having a well-maintained bike." For more useful tips on looking after your bike and to improve your cycling, visit our newly revamped website, http://www.bicycling.co.za/