Saturday, May 13, 2006

Assbike: Lotions and Potions Edition

This is all about the secret lotions and potions that can be found at the Assbike Laboratories. Most of these are solutions to specific problems.

Loctite 242: Some bolts never stay tight, esp. stubby ones like shoe cleat bolts which lead a hard life. Loctite is some sorta magic potion, it starts out as a liquid, but when it's in an anaerobic enviroment (as in no air) it hardens into plastic. 242 is the medium strength threadlock, it locks bolts, but not so hard you can't undo them, and it also acts as an anti-seize. I always use Loctite 242 on my cleat bolts. Since shoe bolts are exposed to all the dirt and water, they are also prone to seizing, and often they get worn down from walking. Locite 242 will add 3 years to your life.

Some parts on a bike are pressed in, like the headset cups. They are pressed into the headtube. If you somehow enlarge that tube, like from a head-on crash, that usually means the frame is toast. But the alchemists at Loctite have a solution! Loctite 620 is the bearing reatiner. It's a liquid that hardens into plastic that will fill a gap where you need it. I sometimes also put a dab on the handlebar under the stem clamp (probably the one interface on a bike where failure will really fuck you hard) so that I don't have to clamp down the stem too hard (and risk damamge).

Bike shops sell grease at insane prices in teeny bike-sized portions. But the smart assbike mechanic buys a pot-o' wheel bearing grease at Canadian Tire for like five buck. Unless you run a bike shop or are the frontman for a Rockabilly band, you will have bought enough grease that your grandchildren will stand to inherit a lifetime's supply.

Another miracle potion comes from the Gunk corporation of Charlotte, North Carolina. All kindsa crap all seized and rusted up from being outside in ass ass Toronto weather? Liquid Wrench will set you free. It has saved my regal ass on more than one occasion.

This is powerful stuff. A little Liquid Wrench back in the day woulda made you the King of England.

Sword in the Stone ? Pshaw !

"Waxing one's chain" sounds like a euphemism for something dirty, but that literally what assbikin' gentlemen do.

Tacky grease stains on your pant leg or calf are strictly for rubes and simpletons. "Waxing" is certainly a throwback to the days of shoeshines and starched collars.

This is how it works. You remove all trace of grease from your drivetrain, esp. the chain. It's best to start with a new chain. Melt a block of paraffin wax in a can, then remove your chain and dip it in the wax. The reinstall it. It will look like it's sugarglazed or something, but you spin the cranks around a few times and the excess wax flakes off. Now your chain is wax-lubed. It will be smooth and quiet for the next two weeks, or until it gets wet. The beauty is the chain is dry to the touch and doesn't leave grease stains everywhere. The downside is you have to stick to this fortnightly regimen or your chain will squeak like a mofo and Italians will call you stronzi and mock your inferior stock.

Also: Advice for Assbike Magazine readers for this summer. Do not spend an afternoon sitting in the blazing sun, drinking beer and listening to the Best of Duran Duran. You will get seriously messed up.

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Blogger Lisa said...

Once again, you posted about something right as I was thinking the question. Emily my bike is squeaking and creaking like a mofo...I guess I'm going to CT to get some grease.

3:54 PM  

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