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Discussion Starter #1

I researched this for a few hours and notice alot of people in India (a place that has WAY more motorcycles per citizen ratio than USA or Europe) recommending plain old fashioned 80w90 gearbox oil (The stuff you use with a CVT scooter) as a chain lubricant. And plain old Kerosene 1-K as a chain cleaner.

I saw many cases of people with over 100k miles on their bike being ridden in India (on dusty trails and roads) that swear by the stuff. With chains reaching over 30k miles on the same chain just with Kersonine and Gearbox oil.

Im sure the motorcycle-products_industry doesnt want people to know this and wants us all spending 15$ on an aerosol can of chain lubricant. But it appears to ring true to my ears.

Anyways, Im going to give it a try and will document my research on this forum and advise you chaps how it works out. Stay tuned. Its the same with my guns and firearms. For many years i was using "gun specific" cleaners and lubricants that where very expensive and later found out I can achieve same results for a fraction of the cost. A $1 bottle of mineral oil from the dollar shoppe will lubricate all my guns for a lifetime.

Walmart in USA sells the 80w90 gearbox oil for 15$ for a gallon sized jug. That jug would lubricate a mans 5 motorcycles for a lifetime. And same Walmart sells the Kerosine 1-K gallon jug for $8. You would be set for a lifetime.
 

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Nothing wrong with it. Kerosine is ideal for cleaning X-ring or O-ring chains. Hypoid oil is a good lubricant but gets thrown off at speed. A dry lubricant stays on the chain. You don't lube inside the chain, only the outside. X and O-rings chains are sealed and the lube is on the pins from the start. Oiling outside keeps them from going rusty. A dry lube is WURTH DRY CHAIN LUBE HIGH PERFORMANCE.
 

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Back in the day before O ring chains came out that is what all the manufactures recommended-also 80-90 gear oil is really about the same viscosity of SAE 40w-only thing wrong with it is it makes a mess
 

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nothing wrong with kero [toothbrush] and oil, compared to spray on specialist products, except for time, mucking around, mess and throw-off on rear wheel..
to some these things are like the untidiness etc of lovemaking, ie, just another
pleasure to be enjoyed.. [pick your own analogy]
back in the day my father used to change oil then boil/soak the chain in
used oil.. when o-rings came out chain boiling also went with the dodos..



for relatively clean chains, a spray-on lube with fine application tube
takes next to no time with virtually no mess [hold cardboard behind chain]..
also a bike cover adds to chain protection when not ridden, and in the rain etc..
 

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Back in the day before O ring chains came out that is what all the manufactures recommended-also 80-90 gear oil is really about the same viscosity of SAE 40w-only thing wrong with it is it makes a mess
This ^
 

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My original O ring chain needed replacing. I looked at the price of a new one and an old fashioned chain as well and found i could buy four old fashioned ones for the price of one O ring chain.


So i fitted the old type chain and use gear oil to lubricate. and kerosene to clean it.


Im retired and like doing maintenance so it works for me, but if you have no time/inclination then stick with O ring...



Bike actually seemed to go a little better with the different chain.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
My original O ring chain needed replacing. I looked at the price of a new one and an old fashioned chain as well and found i could buy four old fashioned ones for the price of one O ring chain.


So i fitted the old type chain and use gear oil to lubricate. and kerosene to clean it.


Im retired and like doing maintenance so it works for me, but if you have no time/inclination then stick with O ring...



Bike actually seemed to go a little better with the different chain.
I am interested to buy a non-o-ring chain after this one wears out but cant find a single YouTube video that talks about "boiling the chain" in a pot or how this is accomplished.

What I mean is that I cant find any comprehensive tutorial on exactly how you are supposed to clean and lubricate an old fashioned chain. So if someone could throw up a link (hyperlink) I would like to see that.

Also if you see the forum entry on experiment that I linked a few posts above you will see that I dry off the lube with a paper towel after letting it sit for 1 hour. I think the people that complain about the gearbox oil making a mess are people that apply too much oil and do not wipe the chain down before riding out. There is nothing revolutionary or risky about using 80w90 gearbox oil on a chain. Chaps have been doing it for over 40 years. In India which has many more motorcycles than the USA or Europe or Aus/NZ, this is a standard practice. India is a country with a large percentage of people using motorcycle as PRIMARY means of transport. On rough roads and many dirt roads. Much rougher conditions than we see in the West.

I feel that modern aerosol products do make the job faster as far as application (saving you an extra 2-3 minutes of time during application) but thats about it. You also squander alot more product because the aerosol can shoots out alot of fluid and does so TOO FAST so that 20-30% of the product is wasted. Also a 16oz can of canned lube is filled at least 30% with propellant (not actual lube) the same way buying a bag of potato chips (crisps) is filled with air.

But talk is cheap. Let me show you some evidence. I have 100 miles ridden (just about) on the chain since I cleaned and lubricated it with gearbox oil. And here is how it looks today:

 

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Absolutely nothing wrong with using gear oil to lube a chain, folks have been doing it for years. In the old days, the "boiling of the chain" on the ol' cooktop was accomplished (and quite popular in England) with a large can of hard wax-like lube sold specifically for that purpose. I remember seeing ads for the stuff in old bike mags and wonder how many kitchens caught fire. PJ1 still sells "black label" spray chain lube for non-o'ring chains, and most new lubes are ok for both.
 

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father 'boiling' used/changed oil
with basic chains was in a steel bin top
over a small brick backyard kiln..

no sealed chains back then so just
tradition and common dog..
included not wasting anything..

no electric start, fuel injection, ecu etc..
todays chains and tyres etc are better,
as are specific chain lubricants..
 

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For the ones thinking of going to a non O ring chain on this bike-- this is such a bad idea I have to speak I'm sure just me saying it will not be enough without something in print to back it up-so for an example go to RK chains site and compare chains and you will see the average O ring chain lasts over ten times longer than the non O ring chain and if you still want too make darn sure you use a heavy duty one because of the HP of this bike- if this bike came with a non O ring chain it would be a 525 or 530 size-
 

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Discussion Starter #14
For the ones thinking of going to a non O ring chain on this bike-- this is such a bad idea I have to speak I'm sure just me saying it will not be enough without something in print to back it up-so for an example go to RK chains site and compare chains and you will see the average O ring chain lasts over ten times longer than the non O ring chain and if you still want too make darn sure you use a heavy duty one because of the HP of this bike- if this bike came with a non O ring chain it would be a 525 or 530 size-
Thank you for sharing that. Can you speak a little bit more at length about it? Because If we think that a well maintained o-ring chain on the CBR300 would last to 30k miles you mean to say that an old fashioned chain would only last us 3000 miles? That would mean we would be changing chains at every oil change.

If the difference is actually that much than certainly I would not buy an old fashioned chain if i could not get at least 10k miles out of it.

I am really grateful to your guys with more experience for sharing your thoughts, you are going to save new members alot of money and prevent us from making many mistakes.
 

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I would like to call it the good old days- but the truth is we worked on our bikes a lot more per mile than now- if you got 5,000 miles out of a chain(which you would not) that one would go on the wall-1,000 mile oil changes- 3,000 mile tune up- if you had a two stroke piston rings every 3-4 thousand miles-and 10,000 miles on any small bike it was time to push it in the corner because it was shot- and I'm talking about Japanese bikes- British bikes half that and double the work Harley worse- there was and old saying harley davidson make of tin ride it out push it in
 

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Thank you for sharing that. Can you speak a little bit more at length about it? Because If we think that a well maintained o-ring chain on the CBR300 would last to 30k miles you mean to say that an old fashioned chain would only last us 3000 miles? That would mean we would be changing chains at every oil change.

If the difference is actually that much than certainly I would not buy an old fashioned chain if i could not get at least 10k miles out of it.

I am really grateful to your guys with more experience for sharing your thoughts, you are going to save new members alot of money and prevent us from making many mistakes.
I can confirm this. I had two non O-ring chains on my CBR250R. One lasted for 3,000 miles and the other lasted 4,000. That was with a chain oiler fitted to the bike. I fitted a X-ring chain after that, which was still going strong 17,000 miles later, when my bike got written off. I didn't have to adjust it every other week either. Cheap non o-ring chains are false economy.
 

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My chain was replaced at my last service 12000km. Service guys said it was flogged, which may or may not be true given the sprockets were fine. Not happy that they replaced it using a clip link joiner though. It's a bit stiff but not a worry. Is it normal to replace with a non-continuous chain?
I've always had the feeling I've been ripped-off.
 

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If it was me I would take it back to the dealer and have them install a riveted master link-clip type master links have no place on a modern street bike.
 
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