Workshop Focus: Picking Your Pedro's Chain Lube
Once you've ensured that your chain, chain rings and cassette are sparkling clean and dry (here's a link to my Bike Cleaning Routine), it's time to choose your chain lube. There are a whole host of lubricant options available though, and how do you know which one is best for you? Should you opt for a wet lube or dry lube? Light oil or Teflon reinforced wax?
In this post, I've picked out three of my favourites from the US brand Pedro's, and thought I'd talk through the differences between them, as well as why they are all good choices.
Review: Pedro's Syn Lube - Wet Weather and Endurance Protection
I'll start with Pedro's Syn Lube, because for the kind of Endurance Riding that I tend to do, as well as the often 'damp' British weather, it's my most used option.
Syn Lube, is as the name suggests, a fully-synthetic lube; or as many know it, a "wet lube". It is designed to withstand and deal with the worst conditions, and the longest rides. It's the best option for mountain bikers, cyclocross, commuters and endurance cyclists; providing great staying power, even when bombarded by trail and road spray.
This is one of my favourite lubricants, and really is a timeless classic, as far as chain lubes go (it's been around since 1989)! If you follow the recommended application instructions: drizzling it onto the chain for 2-3 rotations, waiting an hour and then wiping off the excess, then it lasts for several hundred miles of use and abuse.
With winter approaching, your chain will be grateful if you add this to your maintenance bucket.
Review: Pedro's ChainJ Lube - Mixed Conditions
Next up, is the Pedro's ChainJ Lube, a real all-rounder that is suitable for a wide range of conditions.
ChainJ is a vegetable/synthetic lube mix, and has a lower viscosity than synthetic lubes like Syn Lube. The advantage of the runnier consistency, is that the lube penetrates deeper into the moving parts of the chain, and provides better overall coverage of the moving parts. You'll certainly notice that it's a bit easier to apply and wash off, and also reduces drivetrain friction.
The added advantage of the lower viscosity of the ChainJ lube, is that this it is ideal for using on other moving parts around the bike. Running a bit onto cables, bolts and pivots works a treat, and because the lube is designed to repel dirt, it also serves as a good cleaner in the process.
The lower viscosity of ChainJ means that it isn't as durable as Syn Lube, but it is easier to apply and provides a lower friction option. For most riding conditions, or for those 'fair weather cyclists', it's also has easily sufficient durability.
Review: Pedro's Go! Lube - Low Friction, Dry Weather LubeFinishing on an optimistic note... dry weather chain lube. Pedro’s Go! is similar to ChainJ, but has been engineered to an even lower viscosity level. As a result, it provides even better wear protection and lower friction, because it gives optimal lubrication to all areas of the chain.
Low viscosity comes at a price though, and this really is only a dry weather option, as it will wash off too easily in bad conditions. If you're looking for a super low friction summer chain lube though, this is my preferred option.
Go!, Syn Lube and ChainJ all come in neat little bottles, which make application easy, and it goes hand-in-hand with a general Pedro's theme of making sure quality is covered in all areas. It's also worth noting that ChainJ and Go! are biodegradable, which considering cycling is a 'green' sport, has got to be the right way to go.
There you Go!, then. Three great lubes, but all with quite different purposes and applications. Which one is best for you, will depend on the conditions you are heading out in, and the kind of riding you're doing. Any comprehensive cleaning bucket will probably have all three!