MTB chain being cleaned

WET OR DRY CHAIN LUBE?

Mountain bikers will often disagree on a lot of technical issues, but nothing divides opinions quite like chain lube. Remove subjectivity from the argument and chain lubes can be divided into two categories: wet and dry.

Their applications are equally simple and self-explanatory: Dry lubes are for dry riding conditions and dusty terrain, whilst wet lubes function best on muddy trails.

Wet lubes are very rarely used in SA. We simply don’t have the volume of snowmelt in our riding terrain to merit a wet lube. Using a wet lube in dusty conditions can be ruinous as after only a few kilometres of riding the chain will be coated with sediment, turn black, and start grinding away between the roller links and cassette teeth. The oily residue which is characteristic of a wet lube is simply a fine dust magnet.

Dry versus wet lubricant

Unfortunately, you can’t prevent a chain from getting dirty. In South Africa, dust is the primary abrasive which grinds away a chain or cassette and it collects during each ride.

 

READ NEXT: How often should you service your mountain bike?

 

Extreme mud will clog components too, but that’s a rarity when riding locally – considering our mild rainfall and lack of snow.

For many mountain bikers, traditional degreasers and lubrication agents are an issue due to their non-biodegradability. It’s unforgivable to lube a chain in a pristine wilderness environment with a potentially toxic or hazardous industrial lubricant.

By comparison, a dry lube, such as QBike, features an anti-static wax-based formula, which means that once it has settled and sealed onto the chain’s links and rollers, QBike provides a barrier to dust retention on the drivetrain’s components.

Being biodegradable, QBike’s also perfect to take with you on those long 60-100km rides, when a reapplication of lube can be required.

Dry lubricant bottle

DRY LUBE SUMMARY

  • Dry lubes such as QBike are anti-static, meaning, they repel dust rather than attract it.
  • A build up of dust and grime will not only wear your MTB’s chain and cassette faster, it will also impact how efficiently your power is used.
  • Dry lubes are best used in dry dusty conditions, whilst wet lubes are best used in wet, muddy conditions
  • QBike is biodegradable, environmentally friendly and easy to apply.

 

READ NEXT: How often should you service your mountain bike?

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