Chain Waxing Tutorial

Thanks @MikeMckinney Chain rings and cassette are fairly decent condition. Not much wear, but I will take another look, just in case I have missed something.

@Michael_Brooks All have been dry rides (thankfully). And a bit of indoor turbo use.

@Thomas_De_Kesel Gosh 150 miles, that is 2-4 rides! I guess teh problem is, that with wax, it is harder to assess chain wear, as teh wax takes up some of teh slack (more so than oil I would imagine). However I will swap chains and (see if I can) measure the (apparent) wear on the ones I have taken off.

General consensus seems to be - 1) check other wear and 2) yes change more frequently - esp. is they get wet.
Cheers :slight_smile:

I’ve got a teammate that runs his 4-500 miles between waxing and waits for them to start making some noise. I swap mine weekly on my main bike, which is typicallly 200-250 miles and they are always nice and smooth/quiet at that point. I just like having a fresh “like new” chain for my long saturday ride. I have 4 chains in rotation, so basically waxing once per month. I’ve only been waxing for a couple months, but I don’t think I’ll ever go back to regular lube.

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I dont change mine until it is getting noisy, sometimes a ride or 2 after that because I forget :slight_smile:

Josh turns chain waxing geekiness up to 11.

Anyone uk based know what disolves parafin wax? I did the white spirits clean several times on a chain and dipped it. Each time I rinse it under boiling water and then rewax it darkens the wax - like there’s still dirt/grease still inside it. It was a new chain and once waxed its great - no marks left when handling etc but I think my initial clean wasn’t good enough so I’d like to reclean. Any thoughts or is it new chain time?
I did think it was maybe dirt from the drive train but this is on the trainer bike that doesn’t get to go outside.

Any ideas if or how I could start again on this chain?

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Just curious for people waxing chains, are you also reusing quick links?

I’ve used the reusable quicklinks on 3 bikes (1 road, 2 mountain) without issue.

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Curious who makes these? I run Shimano DA 11s on road and Eagle X01 on MTB.

@Johnnyvee I don’t have the answer you’re looking for, but I get the same. I think it’s road grime, etc, that just get’s worked into the wax. For a time I put the chains through the sonic cleaner with hot water, and it helped, but the effect never really goes away. I decided it wasn’t worth the effort and just accept it. I keep a fairly minimal amount of wax in my slowcooker and occasionally add some more wax. But once it get’s grungy enough I pour it off and start fresh. Wax is cheap – 2 years and still on my first bag.

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KMC. Make sure to get the reusable.

I also like to use the gold ones on standard chain so I can find them easier (I swear, as soon as I turned 50, my eyesight fell off a cliff…)

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Re-using Connex quicklinks, here. I’ve been using the same one on my trainer for a number of years now – will replace it when the chains wear out. I replace it roughly yearly on my outdoor bike to be safe after a season of CX on it.


I have been using the YBN 5x rated quick links. On 4th use across two chains in my rotation and no problems at all - I’ve regularly subjected them 1 min efforts in the 500-600W range, but I rarely do short sprints and don’t exceed 900W. Seems like consensus is that of you are dropping well over 1000W sprints regularly you might want to be a bit more cautious.

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So, question about indoor waxing. It’s getting to be the cold season up here and the garage is often below freezing. On that note, will I kill myself if I wax in the basement? It doesn’t have good ventilation at all, but I would think that just the waxing step itself wouldn’t produce that much outgassing? I don’t think I’d use the cleaners/strippers down there though.

I use MSW fwiw.

I think you’ve got it right. None of the cleaning chemicals but wax should be ok. I do my wax indoors all the time and the cleaning outside. Wax is not very volatile, especially at the temps we are using it at. I’ve got a crock pot with a cover which I keep on it, which way or may not do anything…

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OK all, anyone waxing 12speed MTB chains and if so what sort are you having the best results with? :thinking: