Author Topic: Preventing bike rust?  (Read 14422 times)

imustachemystash

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Preventing bike rust?
« on: August 31, 2013, 08:45:52 PM »
I live in the rainy Seattle area and keep my bike covered while at home.  I'm planning on using it this year to get to work rain or shine and it will get wet!  It's an entry level Diamondback made of aluminium.  It already has a few rust spots and I don't want it to get worse.  I'm wondering what you all do to prevent rust?

abyss

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2013, 10:39:13 PM »
I keep my bike inside, ride to work when it's dry and catch public transit when it's raining. Not the most mustachian approach, but I like my bike too much to let it weather.

Is the rust on the drive chain (chain, cogs and derailleur)? If so, the only solution I know is to dry it when you get home and re-lubricate it.

amha

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2013, 11:00:00 PM »
Rinse it off with a hose and then dry it! If there are rusty spots, try and clean them with steel wool, then you can cap it with toenail polish or electrical tape. (I use both, for good measure.)

cerberusss

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2013, 05:06:47 AM »
I have biked to work for the last seven years, and the bike stays covered both at home and at work. That's often through the rain, since I live in the Netherlands. I don't wipe it down, just leave it to dry. There isn't a single spot of rust on the bike. What is this bike made of, that it rusts? Doesn't the paint prevent rust, or am I overlooking something?

BlueMR2

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2013, 05:29:08 AM »
I'm really surprised rust is an issue.  I have an old steel frame MTB with beat up paint that I ride through rain and snow (with salt) and it doesn't have a speck of rust yet.

What's rusting anyways?  The frame *might* corrode if improperly protected I suppose, but aluminium doesn't rust...

imustachemystash

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2013, 10:08:40 AM »
Well, the frame doesn't have any rust but the pedals do where the paint has been scratched off.  Also the screws holding the handlebars on have rust.  I only got the bike in May. I just don't want the cables to get rusty.

PindyStache

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2013, 12:38:07 PM »
Are these rust spots problems? I bike year-round in Minneapolis (rain/snow/road salt/etc.) and see similar issues with lower-grade/materials beginning some rust, but with a decent bike the primary components should hold up fine. Basic pedals are relatively inexpensive and if a screw looks real bad you can certainly just replace it. There is just some basic level of maintenance with a bike--as with any sort of vehicle. As some of the other posters, I will sometimes hose my bike down before I put it away if I've been through a lot of sand/dirt/salt.

GuitarStv

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #7 on: September 03, 2013, 01:19:49 PM »
I bike a lot in the winter . . . snow, slush, and salt is a tough combination for rust.  The key is to rinse the bike down and keep everything greased up well.

As far as the frame rusting . . . paint prevents it.  If you ding your bike and chip off some paint, get some nail polish that's about the same colour as your bike paint and do touch up once a week.

Also, if you have any steel parts touching aluminum they will rust quickly . . . I'm not sure why, but they do!

wakkowarner

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #8 on: September 03, 2013, 02:15:28 PM »
Also, if you have any steel parts touching aluminum they will rust quickly . . . I'm not sure why, but they do!

Iron is 0.44 volts below hydrogen and aluminum is 1.7 volts under hydrogen, so galvanic dissolution begins in the presence of an electrolyte (anything other than distilled water !).

dragoncar

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #9 on: September 03, 2013, 02:30:13 PM »
Naval jelly (there's a generic chemical) can remove rust and also form a protective layer.  Oil is commonly used on tools to prevent rust.

To those skeptics, consider that some areas are just more rust prone.  Living within a few miles of the ocean, there can be pretty significant salt in the air (in my experience otherwise dry objects tend to rust quite a bit around here even though there no direct sea spray).

jradc

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #10 on: September 03, 2013, 02:45:25 PM »
Biking in the rain won't rust up your ride, but what it will do is wash away the oil on your chain, which can lead to rust pretty quickly. The solution is that you need to oil your chain more frequently if you ride in the rain a lot. Also, fenders help because they reduce the amount of splash hitting your bike when you ride.

To prevent rusting on other parts of your bike, such as bolt-tops or pedals, try applying chain lube or bearing grease.

I kept my bikes outside for many years without a problem (other than theft, that is). If at all possible, look for somewhere to store your bike with an overhang.

madgeylou

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #11 on: September 03, 2013, 02:51:15 PM »
i was wondering the same thing, OP. i have a steel-frame hybrid that has never been out in the rain other than a light sprinkle here and there, and i see rust spots forming on the handlebars already. this bike is less than a year old, so it's bumming me out a bit ... they aren't too bad, so i think i can just rub them out with steel wool. i guess then i should put some clear nail polish on it?

Also, if you have any steel parts touching aluminum they will rust quickly . . . I'm not sure why, but they do!

Iron is 0.44 volts below hydrogen and aluminum is 1.7 volts under hydrogen, so galvanic dissolution begins in the presence of an electrolyte (anything other than distilled water !).

i think this might be what is happening. am guessing that my handlebars are steel and my bike basket is aluminum, or vice versa ... might be worth ditching the basket if this is the case, i will have to check.

GuitarStv

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #12 on: September 04, 2013, 07:03:05 AM »
The basket is most likely steel.  You can always wedge some old bits of inner tube between the basket and handlebars to prevent rubbing/rust if you don't want to ditch it completely.

prodarwin

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #13 on: September 04, 2013, 08:47:43 AM »
Use SS hardware and a SS washer between the two dissimilar metals and it will work pretty well.

theSchmett

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #14 on: September 04, 2013, 08:49:18 AM »
Screws are going to get rusty. The chain you can oil, and I remember from like, 25 years ago there were some people using a wax treatment that the chain would sit in while the wax was hot, but I've never seen it IRL.

For cables, a little grease where they are exposed.

Its a bike - its going to get a little rusty where its not aluminum.

I suppose you could paint over the screws...

Rust

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Re: Preventing bike rust?
« Reply #15 on: September 04, 2013, 08:50:24 AM »
Want to make sure you bike doesn't get Rusty?  Don't let me ride it.

Couldn't help myself...