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Bike care routine

Taita Rocks
6 July 2021
Eliye springs, Lake Turkana
19 July 2021
By Micky Omondi
(Pictured above) Car wash battalion. From left to right; Dr Marcus shampoo, Degreaser, Black in a flash, Shield liquid polish and tyre polish( still shield)

Servicing aside. How do you all take care of your bikes? I know there’s a team carwash and team DIY wash. I am team DIY wash and here’s my small bike care routine done once every Sunday and a weekday in between if need arises.

I’ll break it down into three categories: washing, polishing and lubrication.



First, I spray my chain and other oily patches with a degreaser (orange-ish fluid in the clear container) this gives the degreaser time to act before washing it off in the final rinse.

Then comes the soaking part. It goes without saying most EFI bikes harnesses are very susceptible to damage from high pressure washers. After being victimized a few times, I decided to get myself a mini carwash machine that uses battery power and is plugged into a cigarette lighter port. It uses a submersible pump hence no overheating, has very adequate pressure, lots of accessories and pretty much gets the job done to fulfilment. Now comes the real washing/shampooing.

Talking of shampoos most carwashes use locally brewed soap which is usually very acidic thus corrodes the clear finish paint coat leaving a dry texture behind after a number of washes making the bike loose that shine and look old. I particularly use Dr. Marcus shampoo coz its wash and wax (leaves a shiny look on rinsing), highly concentrated and pocket friendly too. When on a tight budget I use hair shampoo (does the job so well). I wash off the dirt with a car wash brush and some special microfiber cloth (quite expensive but worth it). The final rinse is now a walk in the park. Then I finish by drying using the microfiber cloth awaiting polishing.



I have tried different polishing products but one stood out for me. Turtlewax “Black in a flash”. This one is a game changer. Its shine is very protective (even if the bike is parked under the sun), lasts long (even after washing with soap), and reduces adhesion to dirt (just a little spray and the dirt or mud is off). Shield also have a similar variant but expensive, little (amout) and smells like regrets (read your ex).

Liquid polishes also work fine but don’t hack it for rough textured surfaces. Plus they are kind of laborious. With black in a flash its spray, let it dry for a minute then buff it and boom the bike looks new. Be sure not to spray too much of it, it gets so slippery.

I rarely use tyre polish thanks to partly not having a paddock stand and partly too much hype but when it comes to delivering... Manchester United



Water generally drives away oil and grease. The next morning after my wash I lubricate my chain and other foldable parts like foot pegs using chain lube or gearbox oil. After application, I wipe off excess lube using a cloth to prevent the annoying spray of lube on the rear wheel while riding. And just like that I am sorted for the week with a clean bike.


Parting shot

I know Mugala Bryne will tell me nichunge nisilale mteja.
You guys have a nice week ahead full of safe rides.

Pictured bike: Benelli TNT 250 at 17500kms

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