Oil, Cleaner & Lubricant
A normal petrochemical oil, ideal for lubricating the chain, cables and mechs, suitable for summer and winter use. Fairly thin and runny so it won't make the chain instantly filthy, but as with any oil it will attract dirt if too much is applied, or if not cleaned fairly often. Overall, an ideal all-round bike oil.
An biodegradable oil made entirely from natural ingredients, it's better for the environment and kinder on your skin. Because it's quite thin and runny it needs to be reapplied to the chain a bit more frequently, especially after rain. We've found it can go sticky after a time, so best not used on cables.
A thicker petrochemical oil, good for winter use thanks to its greater water resistance. Suitable for chain, cables and mechs, but because it's so thick and viscous it will attract dirt quickly if the chain is not cleaned regularly.
£2.50 (40g tube)
Standard bike grease for rebuilding headsets, wheel bearings, old-style bottom brackets etc.
£1 per 100ml
A citrus-based detergent which really cuts through oil, dirt, grease and other bike grime. Ideal for degreasing the chain, cleaning chainrings, cassettes, derailleurs etc. etc. Can also be diluted for use as a general bike wash. Use in a chain cleaning device for degreasing the chain, or simply use with an old toothbrush or washing up brush for cleaning other components. This is the cleaner we use in the workshop because, as well as being a very powerful detergent, it's also a bit more eco-friendly and almost odour-free.
We buy it in bulk and can simply dispense whatever quantity you require.
A tool specifically for keeping your chain in good condition, it seems almost like magic when you first use it: your chain ends up looking as good as new! This is the one we use ourselves in the workshop because it's highly effective, made from slightly more flexible plastic than most other designs so is less breakable, and replacement brushes are available. For best results use with citrus degreaser.
Lightweight yet tough and waterproof, this cover is ideal for anyone who has to store their bike outside. Chain, cables, bearings and any other steel parts of a bike will quickly rust if not kept under cover. This model has velcro straps underneath to prevent it lifting up in the wind. A small investment that will quickly repay itself if it means you don't have to replace a rusting chain or corroded cables.
Jake says: there are also all manner of brushes and scrapers and things available for bike cleaning, but quite frankly an old toothbrush, a washing up brush and a sponge or rag will work just fine.