Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Sticky Front Derailleur

I've mentioned sugar residue and its negative effects on shifting, and today I came across a particularly frozen front derailleur. The sugar had dripped all over the derailleur from a leaky water bottle, and fluid in our parts washer was powerless against the sticky residue. Because the sugar was originally suspended in fluid, it was able to flow deep into every one of the derailleur's moving parts. It occurred to me that the best way to get down into the nooks and crannies would be to soak it. However as I mentioned before, the parts washer fluid was having no effect on the sugar. Instead I used....water!

I don't normally recommend dunking your expensive bike parts in water, but it turned out to be a very effective due to sugar's solubility in water.

If you ever try this method, be sure to thoroughly dry and lubricate the part after you're done!

Sticky and lifeless front derailleur.

Into the dunk tank.

The derailleur is getting cleaner and the water is getting dirtier.

Here's a shot of the water soaking the derailleur for a few hours. Don't drink that.

A little scrubbing with a toothbrush cleaned it right up!

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