Chain Waxing Tutorial

Were on the same page. I look forward to @Dr_Alex_Harrison use of a different product

Josh has said wear and friction are not perfectly correlated on his podcast. Also I expect synergetic will pick up some more dust and dirt than the SS. I’m still working through my bottle of silca NFS but will probably pick up the synergetic for wet weather riding in the future.

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Relevant info from recent ZFC testing:

Looks like I’ll be buying some super secret drip for the MTB’s.

Sounds like Josh @ Silca is going to have Adam @ ZFC retest again with 2 drops applied per roller and 24hr cure time.

For SS drip, for me, it doesn’t cause any inconvenience. I ride 4-5 days a week so if I’m taking off Friday before the weekend, I’ll do my application Thursday evening after my ride and then it has all the way until Saturday morning to cure. I’ve been very pleased with it, though synergetic might be my go-to for MTB

I use Silca Hot Melt wax on my gravel bike. I get about 10 hours of riding on a single application.

I used Squirt to relube my chain mid-gravel ride this past weekend. Worked great.

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Man, this means that I have been riding around with subpar chain for the past year… I was following the steps in the guide and there was nothing that was mentioning acetone or such, until I found Molten Speedwax guide…

Oh well, excited to try it on a properly clean chain going forward :slight_smile:

I rode 100 miles yesterday on gravel, on a freshly waxed chain (Silca hot melt).

Forecast said 15% chance of rain. We got caught in the 15% in a short heavy thunderstorm. I can confidently say that fresh wax and wet grit do not mix. After the rain stopped and things dried up, my drivetrain sounded horrific. These are challenging conditions for any lube, but this was really bad - worse than I’ve experienced before.

I stopped, cleaned it, and applied some Squirt. The good news is this process is quick, only a minute or so (I had a small brush I used to brush the chain, cassette and rings to remove dried grit), and helped significantly.

If it had kept raining however, I don’t think this approach would have worked.

Until the rain (about 80 miles), my chain was doing great. So I think wax is good for dry and dusty. But not so good in the wet.

Summary takeaway for me - wax is great for dry gravel. Not good for wet gravel.

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This is why I find it curious when people say wax works well in rain, it never has for me even for very short periods. I’ll probably try synergetic in the fall for mud

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I’m also starting to believe that wax does not work great when you do a lot of riding with the chain at a more extreme angle e.g. in the big cassette cog.

I think under these conditions, the pin/plate interface experiences a shearing force that scrapes the wax away - and unlike wet lubes, the wax can’t flow back to where it’s needed.

I really like the cleanliness of wax … but there have been several instances where I’ve not been very impressed.

I found squirt cold weather ok in the wet this winter. Up to 5 hours, get home and it needed to be reapplied.

I think this depends on how flexible the chains are, my KMC chains are pretty loose and I cross chain with them all the time without much issue.

Squirt had good test results on a wet, muddy chain. But I would distinguish between squirt and other wax. I use squirt on my cross bike and it works well in the mud, but it only needs to last an hour and them it gets washed and re-applied. I use other drip wax on my road bike, and they don’t recommend that for wet conditions. I have got it wet on occasion, and it was fine, but I wouldn’t use it in winter when the roads are wet for 6 months.

Also even though its fine on my cross bike - we don’t have much sand or grit here, only mud/soil.

Squirt is what is known as a slack wax which is a precursor to paraffin which contains some oil which is why it never hardens the same way. I’ve tried it in the wet but wasn’t too happy. Was using silca NFS before for cross and that is pretty fast and synergetic is supposed to be faster

Ok, so i’ve got a completely clean new KMC chain (as per Mspeedwax’s instructions). At this moment I have access to both Squirt and UFO Drip (v2) and was wondering whether to immerse the chain in a plastic bag with either of the drip lubes, then hang-drying it? Or would it simply be better to install it on the bike and then apply the drip lube?

Another alternative I thought of was ordering the Silca Secret Chain Blend in order to do a hot bath with the wax pouch, but not sure whether it’ll be that much better?