Drivetrain Deep Clean | Make Your Road Bike Ride Like New

Drivetrain Deep Clean | Make Your Road Bike Ride Like New

– Riding a bike in the the rain is part and parcel of cycling. Many people out there, however, they don’t necessarily enjoy it, but the way I look at it, is that your skin’s water proof, so what have you got to lose? However, your bike parts can take an absolute battering from the elements. In particular, that drive-train. So today, let’s take a look at how to get it spotlessly clean so that it works perfectly
for you on your next ride. (upbeat hip hip) Tools required for this job, working on a Shimano
Dura-Ace transmission, are as follows: first up,
you’re gonna need a chain tool, that’s to split, and
obviously rejoin the chain once it’s nice and clean. Gonna need a joining pin too, or if you’ve got a
different type of chain, possibly a missing link to reconnect it, a cassette and lockring tool to remove the cassette from your free hub, it’s important to do that
to get it nice and clean, five millimetre Allen key, that’s to remove the cranks, Three millimetre Allen key to remove the derailleur pulleys. Now this special tool here, this is a crank installation
tool from Shimano, that’s to remove that
pre-load cap which sets the crank into position. A Torx T30, to take the chain
rings off of the chain set, couple of brushes here with stiff bristles so you can really scrub away and get as much dirt out as possible. A plastic container, essential
basically for this job so you can put some de-greaser in there and allow everything to sit. The de-greaser, I buy five litres of that for just under 10 pounds, so that’s about 10 dollars or 10 euros, incredibly cheap and does a brilliant job. Some workshop towel to clean up any mess. And finally, some gloves
to protect your hands. Depending on the de-greaser you use, some is actually quite harsh on your hands and really you want to
protect them because, let’s face it, they’re gonna get pretty oily during this job. (upbeat hip hop) Now make sure you find yourself a location such as a garage, a shed, a
workshop, or even outdoors depending on the time of the year. Reason being, if everything goes wrong and you end up spilling
a load of de-greaser, you’re not gonna get in
trouble from anyone else. Now, whilst you could use one of these, so this is a chain
cleaner which ultimately, the chain runs through, you
fill it with de-greaser, and you turn the cranks, and
the chain gets nice and clean, the cassette, the chain
rings, and the jockey wheels don’t actually get that
clean through using it, so this is why we’re gonna do a full de-greasing clean of all those components individually. Now first up, we’re going to remove the rear wheel from the bike, and why? Well, it’s going to remove any
tension in the chain there, because the cassette’s not
going to be holding it in place. Now, if you’ve got a joining
link, you’re laughing, because you can use a
set of master link pliers to remove that link. However, we’ve got a joining pin, so we’re going to use a chain tool to pop that out so we
can take the chain off. Right, so now that you’ve
taken off your chain, you’re gonna wanna place
it in your container, try and keep it as flat
as possible in there, and then once it’s in grab your de-greaser and carefully pour it in. Try not to spill any. Try and put enough in so that
it actually covers the chain. So, what I’m gonna do now, is actually leave the chain in the
bath of de-greaser there so it can do some of the hard work for us, and next up, I’m gonna remove the cassette from the free hub. (upbeat hip hop) So now for the potentially messy bit. So with a stiff brush, basically you’re going to want to
scrub away at that chain for as long as you desire,
to be perfectly honest. You’re not gonna damage it by doing so. Obviously if you do leave
the chain in there forever, the de-greaser could possibly
contaminate the chain, but, for the short amount of
time we’re gonna be doing it it’s gonna be all right. Make sure that you work
it into the rollers and around the pins as much as possible, just to loosen off all
of that dirt, grime, existing oil, everything. Run the chain through your fingers too, and make sure that there’s
no stiff or graunchy feel in there at all from any bits of grit that get in between
those rollers and pins. Then what I can do with this de-greaser is actually wash it off with a tap, because it’s water based, so that can remove all of
the de-greaser from it, and then it’s simply a
case of drying it off, so you could do that with
a towel or an old rag, something like that. Alternatively, an air
compressor if you’ve got one, that’s super simple and
does a fantastic job, or a hair-dryer, or even the radiator. So it’s now time to
clean up that cassette. Personally now, I would put
either just one sprocket or one cluster of sprockets
in the de-greaser at a time, that way it’s easier to work, there’s nothing else
to get muddled up with. Now, depending on how
filthy your chain was, you may be able to re-use the de-greaser, if not, make sure you
dispose of that carefully. Now the process for cleaning the cassette, very much like the chain, don’t be afraid to give it
some good old elbow grease and really work hard on the brush to try and loosen as much
dirt and grime as possible. A little tip here, is a tooth brush, that way you can get into
all the nooks and crannies of a cassette, so in between the teeth, and also inside of all these parts here. As well as the inside of the cassette. So next we’re gonna remove the jockey wheels from the bike. So take them out, give
them a good clean up with some shop towel or an old rag. If you’ve got sealed bearings on them, you could possibly revitalise
them if they’re feeling rough, so put them between your fingers, give them a spin around, if there’s any rough feeling at all you can pop off the
seals and re-grease them, but in the end, you are
gonna to buy some new ones, so I’d recommend just doing that anyway. Other pulley wheels, they
actually have bushes in there, which are really simple to just remove and then drop a few bits
of lubricant on there and reassemble and you’re good to go. So also, it’s worth cleaning the inside of the derailleur cage here, cause you can see it does get quite a bit of grime built up there. So next up let’s clean the chain rings and they’re not always that easy to clean when they’re on the bike because sometimes you can have an odd shaped tube, or an oversized bottom bracket and you can’t get in there
as well as you’d like to, and also, well, we wanna
clean the cranks too, and also that bottom bracket spindle, and we can’t do that without
removing the chain set, so let’s do that next. (upbeat hip hop) So whilst we’re here, have a quick check of the bearings too. These are absolutely fine, which is good, it means one less job to have to do today. Next up is the chain rings. So depending on how
they’re fixed to the crank in this case, it’s with a T30 Torx key. Just simply remove the bolts, put the chain rings into the de-greaser, and then scrub away just like
all the other components. However, just bear in mind that you may well have two Allen keys, make sure that they are the correct size, because you don’t want to
slip and round of any bolts when removing them. So the next step is to actually clean up that cranks themselves. So what I suggest basically,
is to get an old rag or some workshop towel,
dip it in some de-greaser, and then simply rub it over the crank to remove any old grease or
grime or dirt that’s on there. As well as the actual spindle
here of the chain set. (upbeat hip hop) Now it’s just a case of reassembling everything on to your bike. A few final pointers though. Grease up those chain ring bolts, if you don’t then they
do risk being basically cold seized in there and that’s not ideal because you may well end up
having to drill them out. Use some grease too on the spindle here of the chain set if you’ve
got something like this. It’ll also prevent water
actually getting inside of the bottom bracket. Also, put a few bits just around here on the serrations too. Now pulley wheel bolts,
that some think which, some people think you should grease, others think you should use Lock-tite for, most manufacturers these
days actually use Lock-tite so I would advise that too, a medium strength one. Finally, the chain. Now, don’t go dousing it in loads of oil or anything like that because you’re just gonna attract in all that dirt again. So pay good attention
and get really close in on those rollers and pins
and just apply it there. Now let me know in the comments down below what video you would like to
see next in Maintenance Monday. And who knows? Maybe I will do it for you. Now remember as well, to
like and share this video with your friends, and also, check out the GCN shop,
where you can get things like this apron. Now for another great
video, click down here for the latest GCN Tech show.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. I love to see the next maintenance Monday video being a full service of my bike or you fitting etap or Di2 to it!!!!!!

  2. Clean the chain ob a regualr basis with a rag. Then throw it away. Degreasing a chain is bad for the environment. Replace it with a cheap 10€ one

  3. A tip: When you pour from a 5ltr plastic container (like the degreaser) do so with the opening at the top – that lets the air in smoothly and doesn't cause the liquid to surge as the air replaces the liquid.

  4. Hi GCN could you please do a video on how to set up cable disk brakes. How do I set up my cable disks as it seems to be all or nothing. Do I have the disk rubbing all the time or nothing when the wheel is free to run and then the brakes are useless. I'm that fed up of adjusting my disk brakes after every ride what I'm I doing wrong? Thanks

  5. Jon, my automotive trainer would have had a fit if he saw you using a torque wrench to loosen a bolt! loosen with a torque wrench can impact on the calibration of the tool.

  6. Skin is waterproof, what do you have to lose? Well, I broke my wrist riding in the wet. Ended up having to take leave without pay. So yeah, almost a couple grand actually.

  7. Pro-tip, when pouring from a big can hold it sideways when you pour and you wont spill. Also works with big juiceboxes and jerrycans etc.

  8. Use an ultrasonic cleaner. It will take you 10% if the time and no scrubbing degrease in ultrasonic and rinse with hot water

  9. Fully Upgrading a 7speed groupset to a shim 105 group but on a 80's Peugeot frame with an old school bb. It's on my list of things to do. Cheers

  10. you forgot to say this should all be done in a vacuum during a lunar eclipse or else it won't be quite as spotless

  11. I find it quite useless to degrease the chain. With a simple rag you can get really good results. Your chain will get dirty again after like 10k, so really, why??? Plus a rag is faster and less messy. Just use a rag!

  12. Shimano now do missing link for 11spd so no need for a joining pin

    if you can stretch to one a ultrasonic bath.
    Also do a deep clean on new parts to get the manufacturers grease off and put some proper lube on such as Molten Speedwax for the race chain or Squirt Lube (ceramic wax ) for the training chain.
    Bin the stock Shimano jokey wheels, they don't use a proper bearing and are at best crap

  13. Have you ever tried using an ultra sonic parts cleaner? I was thinking about getting one and charging my club mates 10 bucks a go for drive chain cleanings.

  14. I wonder why more people don't use quicklinks on their chains? They're so easy – surely using a chain tool and joining pins every time is much more of a faff?

  15. Or just use mucoff systems and leave all insitu, mine come out showroom clean every time takes 20 mins in total! unless you like spending 2 hours cleaning your bike after the rain 🤣

  16. I guess my technique of good 'ol fashioned spit and an old t-shirt is the wrong way of doing it. Oh well…where'd my beer go?

  17. I would like to see a video on changing sealed hub bearings. The bearings need to be changed on my Giant disc brake hubs.

  18. rain not part of cycling , we dont all live in uk , be real .)
    id soonmer buy new chain n sprcokets than clean it properly

  19. If you’re going to go to the trouble of doing all that to your drivetrain, you may as well clean the whole thing 🤔

  20. I am a proper novice at all things bike. I enjoy the videos but would really like to see more details of actually how you remove the components using the tools and not just a quick flash (ie the chan whip and crank tool. Also do you have to use a new pin to rejoin? and can you use a speed chain link like a kmc 10 speed link on a shimano chain? If you're chain snaps when you're out and you only have a speed link to use (if you can), Is this only a temporary fix that you have to replace for a pin or will it last? I know, Sorry, so many questions!

  21. And this took you how long? Might I suggest to you that if this took any longer than 1/4 the length of the ride, then you've perhaps answered the question as to why none of us like riding in the rain!

  22. I would like to see a video on Carbon Wheels (not major manufactures e.g. Zipp, Mavic etc). Chinese Wheels tend to get a bad press, but how many of the 're-branded' wheels which are for sale, at premium prices, are actually just these Chinese rims with fancy branding and marketing? Many companies use the Far East for their supplies so a "GCN does science" on some of these rims would be very informative…

  23. What I'd like to see next… is Si's old video on chain cleaning with WD-40. But I can't, as my bike's chain just started to squeak today, so it's time to squirt some WD40 on it.

  24. Hi guys, thanks for all the videos, great show! I’ve just bought a new Shimano Ultegra groupset to upgrade my bike from its current 105 groupset. Could you make a video to show how to proceed?
    Cheers from Scotland.

  25. what do you mean contaminate the chain? – Also, I would say lubing the chain is probably easier off the bike, and then putting it on, really only having as much oil on it as necessary. This way all the cogs would stay clean a lot longer.

    One more thing: ever waxed your chain instead of oil?

  26. Pipe cleaners are very handy for day to day cleaning of the drive train. They fit right in between the cassette sprockets and the chain links. They really suck up dirt. I use them after every other ride. It makes it pretty quick and easy to have a clean drivetrain for the next ride.

  27. TECH SUGGESTION ####### when pouring from a one gallon or 5 liter can pour with the opening near the top just opposite of the video. You will find this gives you complete control of the pour 🙂 No fuss no mess 🙂 YOU MUST TRY THIS TECHNIQUE !!!
    SEE TIME MARK 3:20

  28. How often would you make time to do this deep clean routine if you're doing weekly to every couple of weeks mini-cleans?

  29. You should not remove the link pin, it's a one time deal only. You should choose another pin and remove that then install a new re-joining pin.

  30. And after that you should use wax based lube ("squirt" for example). As result you forget about degreasing forever. Possibly, GCN will make video about it?

  31. I gave that Screwfix No Nonsense brand Heavy Duty Degreaser that Jon was using here a go last night with a dirty chain, taken off bike and given a shake in a screw top container. It wasn't very effective neat and just foamed up when shaken, but when diluted with 3 to 4 parts hot tap water and it was transformed and did a really good deep clean.

  32. Criminal activity going on here. You have the drive train looking beautiful but the bike is filthy. Why didn't you clean the bike before you put the drive train back on?

  33. Turn your 5 liter by 90 degrees, the air bubble will not be so big and spoil everything over you table.

  34. I don't go through the hassle of removing all of that. I just remove the wheels, install a dummy hub, which gives access to the jockey wheels. I then use Parks Tools stiff brush to get at the jock wheels, the cassette and the crank and use the chain cleaner for the chain. I rinse it down and then wash the bike and clean the wheels off the bike and get deep into the cassette. I just did this today. I can see doing this deep, deep clean once the bad weather breaks, but not every time after a ride in the rain.

  35. this was so painful to watch! Use a high pressure washer with some soap first to clean all of the sand and stuff first so you don't damage the protective coatings and paint! Only then it's a good idea to disassemble everything for degreasing with a degreaser/diesel/kerosene and re-lubrication.

  36. Jo, small tip. So as not to "splash" when poring from a can then rotate 90 degrees and you will not get an air trap" and glugging happening, thus a smooth stream. enjoy the education / information and keep up the good work.

  37. Is it not possible to take the chain off without separating it by taking off the jockey wheels with an Allen key? That would seem a lot easier and cause less wear to the chain.

  38. I'm assuming that his advice on lube for the chain is referring to the wet weather oils and not the rock-'n'-roll dry lubes which evaporate away leaving the chain feeling dry but latex lubricated.. right?

  39. If I did that regularly I would have no time for anything else. thanx @ shimano for asking 1,50€ for one joining pin!

  40. Maintenance is much more simple if you use a master link for the chain regardless of what Shimano says. Pins installed at the factory are installed differently and more securely than what the average biker can achieve. Every time the chain is broken, it becomes weaker and this becomes a real problem for people who ride off road where the stress on the chain is much greater. The only time I break a chain is when I size a new chain for installation. A master link such as those made by Connex is far safer and much more convenient. Also, cleaning the drivetrain is much easier when it doesn't get filthy in the first place. Learning how to heat soak a chain in a combination of canning paraffin and motor oil means that the chain performs better and does not attract dirt nearly as much.

  41. I remove my cranks and degrease and grease it myself every 300 km thank you Shimano XT M8000 hollowtech set up for making this easier for me

  42. Nothing beats cleaning those parts as good ole fashion fuel. No need for any degreaser. Fuel is the go to liquid for anything that is dirty, oily or greasy.

  43. My Ultegra jockey wheels should not be swapped, the low one rides tight side to side and does the shifting the upper one is loose side to side and just lets the chain quietly find the center of each cog.

  44. serations.??…..splines i think…bit anal and i would only go that full hog if selling my bike..otherwise first puddle ..back to same ..still..good stuff

  45. pro tip, flip that bottle of degreaser around so hole is at the top and that will let you pour it nice and easy with out it 'glugging'…

  46. It's spring I think a lot of people are going to be taking their bikes out and doing some maintenance I would love love to see a series of videos once a week of you know how to clean and lubricate from the front top of the bike to the bottom back that would be absolutely perfect to get some new life out of your bike before we all start hitting the long days

  47. 1. A deep clean is to do a hot bath clean, that is you place the chain is heated mineral turps for about 15-30 minutes. This remocves all dirt out of the internal parts of the chain. How you've done it only removes outer dirt, thus not a deep clean.
    2. Skin is actually water absorbent.

  48. Pouring degreaser into container and then submerging the chain can help you keep the degreaser bottle clean

  49. 2:57 what?! Removing a joining pin?! Isn't Shimano suggest to remove any other pins, except the joining pin? It is slightly bigger than the normal pins, so it can tightly fit in place of the original pin, while the original would be a little bit loose? Same should be here, when you remove the joining pin, you leave a bigger hole, so the new pin won't fit so tight.

  50. My process:
    1.shake in diesel or paint thinner
    2.shake in degreaser
    3.brush left over grime or whatever
    4.shake in denatured alcohol
    5.put in hanger
    6.put it back in ur bike
    7.put in oil

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