Cycling is an excellent form of exercise, transportation, and a great way to explore the outdoors. However, for bike owners, one major concern is the longevity and protection of their bike frame, especially if it’s made of raw steel.
Raw steel frames are known for their durability, aesthetic appeal, and unique riding characteristics. But, they are also susceptible to rust and corrosion if not properly cared for.
In this article, BSXInsight will discuss how to protect raw steel bike frame, so you can enjoy your ride for years to come.
Why is Your Bike Frame Rusting?
Your bike is not just a mode of transportation but also a valuable asset. It can last for many years if you take good care of it. However, bike frames are made of steel, which is prone to rusting.
Rusting can not only ruin the aesthetics of your bike but also weaken its structure, causing safety hazards.
If you notice rust on your bike frame, it is essential to take immediate action to prevent it from spreading and causing damage. But first, let’s understand why your bike frame is rusting.
The main reason for bike frames rusting is moisture. Steel is susceptible to rust when exposed to air and water, causing it to corrode.
When you ride your bike in the rain or store it in a damp area, the moisture can penetrate through the paint, leading to rust formation. Salt and chemicals on the road, sweat, and other environmental factors can also cause rusting.
How To Protect Raw Steel Bike Frame?
The good news is that you can protect your bike frame from rusting by following a few simple steps. Here’s how:
Protecting the Inside of Your Frame
One way to protect the inside of your bike frame from rust is to apply a rust inhibitor. A rust inhibitor is a spray that is applied to the inside of the frame to prevent rust from forming.
You can also use a Frame Saver, a product specifically designed to protect the inside of your bike frame from rust.
To apply a rust inhibitor or Frame Saver, you will need to remove the bike’s components and turn it upside down.
Then, spray the rust inhibitor or apply the Frame Saver to the inside of the frame. Once done, allow it to dry completely before reassembling the bike.
Post-ride care is crucial to protecting your bike frame from rust. After every ride, wipe down your bike with a clean, dry cloth to remove any sweat, dirt, or debris that may have accumulated on the frame.
If you ride in the rain or on wet roads, dry your bike as soon as possible to prevent water from sitting on the frame and causing rust.
Protecting the Outside of Your Frame
To protect the outside of your raw steel bike frame, you can apply a rust inhibitor or Frame Saver.
However, if you want to maintain the bare steel look, you can apply a protective coating such as a clear lacquer or a wax-based protectant.
This will create a barrier between the frame and the elements, preventing rust from forming.
Season End or Season Change
If you’re storing your bike for an extended period, such as at the end of the cycling season or during a seasonal change, it’s essential to take extra precautions to protect your bike frame.
Before storing your bike, give it a thorough cleaning, and apply a rust inhibitor or Frame Saver to the inside of the frame.
Also, apply a protective coating to the outside of the frame to prevent rust from forming while in storage.
Frame Saver is a specially designed product that protects the inside of your bike frame from rust. It is a spray that is applied to the inside of the frame, creating a protective barrier against moisture and corrosion.
Frame Saver is easy to apply and dries quickly, making it a convenient option for protecting your raw steel bike frame.
Protecting your raw steel bike frame from rust requires regular maintenance and care.
Applying a rust inhibitor or Frame Saver to the inside of your frame and using a protective coating on the outside can prevent rust from forming.
Taking these measures will not only protect your bike frame but also prolong its lifespan, ensuring safe and enjoyable rides for years to come.
What’s The Part of a Bike You Need To Protect?
When installing components, apply a liberal amount of grease to these contact points:
- bottom bracket threads and shell
- head tube and headset
- seat post and the inside of the seat tube
- under the seat binder collar
- rear derailleur threads
- water bottle bolt threads
- bottom bracket cable guide bolt
- brake bolts
- barrel adjuster threads
- housing ferrules
- fender and rack bolts
How often should I clean and maintain my bike frame?
It’s recommended to clean and maintain your bike frame at least once a month or after every ride in rainy or wet conditions.
Can I still ride my bike if the frame has rust?
It’s generally safe to ride a bike with surface rust, but if the rust has compromised the structural integrity of the frame, it’s not safe to ride.
How can I tell if my bike frame has rust on the inside?
The best way to tell if your bike frame has rust on the inside is to inspect it with an endoscope camera or by tapping the frame with a small hammer.
If you hear a dull thud instead of a ringing sound, it could indicate rust inside.
Can I prevent rust on a painted bike frame?
Yes, you can prevent rust on a painted bike frame by regularly washing it with soap and water and applying a layer of wax or polish to protect the paint.
You can also touch up any scratches or chips in the paint to prevent moisture from reaching the steel underneath.
Can I use any type of oil or lubricant on my bike frame?
No, you should use a specific type of lubricant designed for bike frames, such as light oil or grease. Avoid using heavy or thick oils, as they can attract dirt and grime, which can lead to rust.
In conclusion, protecting a raw steel bike frame requires some extra care and attention compared to other bike frames.
However, with the right knowledge and tools, it is possible to keep your steel frame in excellent condition for many years.
Taking care of the inside, outside, and contact points of your frame, as well as performing regular post-ride maintenance, will help prevent rust and other forms of damage.
By following these tips and taking the time to care for your bike, you can enjoy many happy and rust-free rides on your steel-frame bike.