Chain lubrication,,,methods brands etc - Kawasaki Versys Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-29-2018, 07:17 AM Thread Starter
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Chain lubrication,,,methods brands etc

Hey,

As a newbie to bikes with a chain, (all my previous bikes have had shaft drive) I want to know the lowdown on brands, techniques, etc.

I suspect this is much like the oil debate, lol!

2016 Kawasaki Green Versys 1000
2013 Kawasaki Concours 1400
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-29-2018, 08:47 AM
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oh no you opened a huge can of worms....... lol

well my personal method that ive used for years on 100s of bikes with chains is this...
and i normally do it after every tank of fuel ..
if available put the bike on a rear stand.
if chain is really dirty i spray it down with WD-40 and take the crud brush to it (for at least two full loops of the chain)
then i oil it with 80-90 weight gear oil as for DID's(my chain of choice) recommendation on there box.

again thats just me personally some just use WD-40 and are fine with that, some use high dollar lubes from a can.

yes im a guy.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-29-2018, 09:01 AM
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Please use search,over 500 threads on this forum, on chain lube,we don't need another one, below will answer all your questions.

https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...-few-here.html

https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...ain-video.html

https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...alignment.html

Last edited by onewizard; 10-29-2018 at 09:03 AM.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-29-2018, 09:47 AM
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Get some chain lube
Read the label
Lube the chain

After that, it's all opinion

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-29-2018, 11:53 AM
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I reset the trip odometer when I clean/lube the chain. At about 400 miles or so I will clean/lube it again. For me this is a simple way to keep track. I fill the gas tank when it gets to about half full, so using a fillup as a reminder doesn't work for me.

As to products, any major brand will be adequate. Use dedicated products made for chains. WD40, kerosene, etc have their fans but you can't go wrong with a chain dedicated product.

A grunge brush does help remove grunge much better than just using a paper or cloth towel.

I put a piece of cardboard behind the chain (between the chain and the frame of the bike) to keep the spray off of the wheel, tire, paint, etc.

I use a track stand to get the rear wheel off the ground. You could use a snap-jack or other similar device, or a center stand (does the V1K have a center stand?). If you don't get the rear wheel off the ground it is a chore to roll the bike back and forth to get access to the chain.

Dry type lubes will stay cleaner than the oily ones. Your chain is internally lubricated, so you don't really need to get much lube on it. Warm the chain by riding for a few minutes. Clean it thoroughly and wipe it dry with towels. Let it air dry for a few minutes. Then apply the lube. Let it sit for a few minutes. I like to spin the rear wheel slowly a few times to help the lube move into crevasses. Then wipe it dry.
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-29-2018, 04:44 PM
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I lube ever other tank, but for me that is ever 2-3 days. If I am on a road trip, I lube it once a day if all highway miles. I just hit the chain with some WD40, wipe it off good with a rag, use a chain brush to make sure I got the gunk off. Then hit it with chain lube.


If I rode the normal amount that most people do, Id probably shorten that to every tank of gas Id clean every other tank.

Factory chain lasted me 12,000 miles (questionable lubing on my part towards the end if I am honest) New chain is at 14,000 miles might replace it with the rear tire in another 3,000 or so.
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-30-2018, 09:01 AM Thread Starter
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there are 500 threads, but looking for the coles notes version of all that. wd40 and that dupont stuff seem to come out on top so far??
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-30-2018, 01:49 PM
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Lot's of HOW TO videos on youtube.

Every second fill up of the tank translates into the recommended frequency of lubrication in the manual and is an easy way to remember.

The chain has grease sealed inside the chain pins. Grit on your chain is what destroys the rubber O rings that hold in the grease, thus causing the link to seize and making your chain toast. Grit ultimately is what will destroy the chain. Lubing the chain helps keep it clean and keeps the O rings lubricated and healthy and happy. They disintegrate without chain lube. It also reduces wear on the sprockets.

I clean the chain with a Grunge Brush ($10 on Amazon) and WD-40 or diesel/kerosene, usually once for every few lube applications or just before I wash the bike. Any kind of solvent like brake cleaner or gasoline will destroy the rubber O rings and thus your chain.

Too much chain slack causes driveline lash, too tight will shorten life of chain and sprockets. Best to keep it at 3cm. Make sure rear wheel is aligned as an out of alignment rear wheel will accelerate wear.

Of the stuff I've tried I like Motul Dry Chain Lube and Dupont Teflon Chain Saver (only Lowes seems to sell this) the best, mainly because they lubricate but don't attract grit and dirt like oil does and don't fling off onto the rear wheel and tire. They also don't create hard to remove gunk on the chain like chain waxes always seem to do.

Last edited by twowheels; 10-30-2018 at 02:02 PM.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-30-2018, 09:31 PM
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Dont adjust your chain too tight in my opinion, a common mistake. Go with the loosest range of recommended tolerance so as to allow for swingarm travel when adjusting and keep it clean of grit. I splurged and bought a fancy X-Ring chain last time....Whoa,thats a nice chain! Pretty much the most expensive but doesnt seem to stretch. And oh yea...Eddies got me hooked on WD-40 by itself now but that involves a quick spray between rides.Im interested in trying the Dupont. The science behind it sounds right,teflon as a dry lubricant.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 10-31-2018, 12:15 AM
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Acumen AUTOMATIC CHAIN OILER CL10 A Kettenschmiersystem TOP -/- 55% Buy Online

I use ACUMEN Automatic Chain Oilier. Only problem is getting the refill shipped as air travel doesn't take compressed can in flight.
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-06-2018, 10:06 AM
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What's everyone using to clean their chains?

I spray it down with WD40 overnight ans then brush next day. I Really like kerosene, but our bikes are parked in the basement (walkout door) and the kerosene stink would be a no-no

No matter where you go - there you are.
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-06-2018, 10:42 AM
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I use Motorex Chain Clean. No complaints, the stuff works. It is a thin petro-chemical solvent which immediately dissolves the black greasy crud off the chain. There may be better products out there, idk. This one works ok for me. It does have a solvent odor, so I only use it outdoors and I try not to breathe any of the vapors.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-06-2018, 11:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kballowe View Post
What's everyone using to clean their chains?

I spray it down with WD40 overnight ans then brush next day. I Really like kerosene, but our bikes are parked in the basement (walkout door) and the kerosene stink would be a no-no
I spray my chain when I return from a ride while it's still warm, using WD40 sprayed onto the TOP of the LOWER chain run just in front of the rear sprocket (so it goes into the O-rings). Then I spin the rear wheel several times w/ my foot (rear in the air on a T-REX paddock stand), followed by taking a rag and wiping the chain to get any excess.

When I spin the wheel, I get about 6 to 6 1/2 turns before it stops, indicating that the chain is NOT "sucking-up" a lot of power, and FWIW - I got OVER 56K miles from the OEM chain on my '08 V650 [using nothing BUT WD40 on its chain!], and I keep riding when the road turns to dirt....

IF I'm on a multi-day ride I let the wheel's rotation 'spin' the WD40 into the O-rings after I spray.

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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-06-2018, 11:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kballowe View Post
I Really like kerosene, but our bikes are parked in the basement (walkout door) and the kerosene stink would be a no-no
I also prefer kerosene, the best chain cleaner going and quite cheap to use compared to chain-specific products.

Are you aware that there are low-odour kerosenes available?
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-08-2018, 06:07 PM
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Red face Cameleon Chain Oiler PLUS

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greenmonster View Post
Hey,

As a newbie to bikes with a chain, (all my previous bikes have had shaft drive) I want to know the lowdown on brands, techniques, etc.

I suspect this is much like the oil debate, lol!

I have had shaft drive bikes for the past 15 years or so. I tried a few oil and/or wax combinations with my 2015 Versys 650 for a few seasons but eventually broke down and installed a Cameleon Chain Oiler PLUS. I have never looked back.


Good luck!

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post #16 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-08-2018, 06:33 PM
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https://www.kawasakiversys.com/forum...-cleaning.html

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post #17 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-09-2018, 03:37 PM
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Here's my $0.02

I am a newb to motorcycles, but I can say that kerosene works wonders for cleaning off the grit/grease. I bought some fancy Maxima chain cleaner which worked ok, but kerosene is cheaper, easier to use, and does a better job.

For oil I've been using Maxima Chain Wax and so far it's also been great! It doesn't sling or drip, and I've done about 6 chain cleanings on a single can and still have plenty left in the can. My bikes feel super smooth after the chain wax treatment. Much better than whatever grease my Kawasaki dealer was using, and it doesn't sling all over my muffler heat shield!
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post #18 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-09-2018, 06:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Smiley View Post
I also prefer kerosene, the best chain cleaner going and quite cheap to use compared to chain-specific products.

Are you aware that there are low-odour kerosenes available?
Yeah, it's called WD-40

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post #19 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-10-2018, 10:19 AM
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Don't overdo it. Quite often, folks do more damage than good lubing it every 400 miles. Go for 600-1000 miles based on your riding conditions.
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post #20 of 21 (permalink) Old 04-22-2019, 01:45 PM
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To revive an old thread beaten to death elsewhere...

FortNine just put out a new video on this topic. Interesting!

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