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Wednesday, December 06, 2006
HOW TO PREVENT RUST ON YOUR BICYCLE
I was walking in downtown Montreal today and couldn't help but notice this bike. It was locked with a proper U type lock, but there was enough space left between those bars to let the Titanic pass through! Some thief could easily put a spreading tool in there and pop that lock. But the one element that got my attention was that empty seat tube. The owner chose wisely to remove the seat, that is probably held there by a quick release mechanism, but didn't realise that he left his frame open to the elements and the most sinister of enemies, RUST.
Rust is that sneaky chemical reaction that makes unprotected metal react with air and moisture to eat away slowly at your pride and joy. The inside of the frame is not painted or protected in anyway against the elements. If you have to remove your seat, make sure that you cover it in order to avoid water or moisture to get in there. Once rust starts snacking on the inside of your frame, you're screwed. I had a beautiful cantilever frame cruiser snap a downtube on me because of this(Rest In Pieces "Carbait").
The outside of the frame is also vulnerable to the elements. That paint can get knicked and scratched and the exposed metal will eventually rust. Buy a small amount of touch up paint and do those touch-ups as soon as you find them. If you already have some rust showing, make sure to sand it off before applying the paint. Painting over rust will only mask it until it shows it's ugly face again in a very near future.
Remember that when rust shows up, it's almost as hard to get rid of as your in-laws. ;)
Til next time ride safe and Godspeed.
Posted by Gerry Lauzon at 4:45 PM