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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello guys!
How do you clean your bikes?
I have been riding (and owning) a bike for under six months.

Yesterday I went for a ride in the FZ-09, and went under the rain.
I kept on riding, as I am not made out of paper.

All good... arrived home safe!
Yet the bike was ridiculuously dirty!!

Cleaned her up the best I could with car wash liquid, a sponge, and a toothbrush.
Yet there are still areas that are dirty.

I ask this basic question of "how to clean the bike" because none of my friends ride, and I don't have the experience to know "how to" clean the bike.

I figure wash her with the car wash liquid... and scrub down there with the brush.
Any special tools you guys have found?
Should I lube my chain afterwards?
The rear wheel had specs of grease/oil that got flung from the chain (I am still under 100 miles on her!).

Any tips, or links much appreciated!!

EDIT: Going to post pics when I get home... phone isn't cooperating with us!
 

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Do you know Pledge? This is a spray to clean and protect furniture.
That is what I use. Spray it on a cloth and apply. After you treated the whole bike, take a clean cloth and rub it out. It shines and dirt has less grip on it. Don't use it on your discs!!
When you take a sticker of anything. Put Pledge on it, let it soak for half an hour and the glue is gone.
It even clean's the rear wheel.

O I forgot to tell that I start with making the bike wet with a hose.
Wash it with hot water and an common cleaner. Hose it of again and blow it dry with a compressor.
 

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For washing, I have a couple of these. Makes cleaning in/around all of the nooks and crannies easier.

In my experience, the best thing for cleaning rims is WD-40

It wouldn't hurt to lube the chain.
 

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Make sure not to put any armorall on your seat or any shiny tire stuff anywhere near your treads. You tend to get more sliding than necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Awesome replies guys!!

Going to go through them now!

I am happy I asked, because I just didn't know.
I went to the auto parts store... and as I was standing there looking at the tire wet-look products, I checked online, and the quick 2 minute phone-search consensus was not to use any of those.

So, I am happy I asked!!

Will check out your suggestions now!
Thanks!!

EDIT:
And the pics, which inspired me for this thread
Dirty girl
Land vehicle Vehicle Motorcycle Car Transport

Rear suspension:
Tire Auto part Automotive tire Motor vehicle Vehicle

Aren't these headers supposed to be mirror finish?
Auto part Engine Vehicle Automotive engine part Car


And here she is, after her first wash!
Land vehicle Vehicle Motorcycle Car Motor vehicle

I have to admit... cleaning a bike (good) is a PITA!!!
I scrubbed, and checked, and re-cleaned, and brushed, and cleaned, and there are STILL dirty places!!


Last question:
The header, I did clean all the "mud" off it... yet apparently, some road debris went flying, and landed on the header...
It being super hot, this debris is now stuck to the header... it's like little specs.

What should I use?
Chrome polish?
 

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Just in case you don't know, be sure and let your bike cool off before washing it. If you don't have any of the cleaning supplies mentioned, maybe run to the store can grab some simple green. I just spray it all over my bike (except instruments, and seat, brake pads) and let it sit for a minute or two and hose it off real good. I use wd-40 to clean the swing arm and wheels. I have used pledge on both my harley and ducati and it cleans the tanks well and is cheap. Now if you get super into cleaning your bike, look up the Master Blaster, it is unit that blows hot compressed air to dry the bike. I have one and it's something I can't live without. Good luck.
 

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Aj.

those header specs...I noticed my header has welding slag stuck on it as if they were too lazy to buff it off (one way to keep the price down so cant complain) so you might be seeing that.


I don't own a motorcycle specific dryer but I do own a battery powered Ryobi leaf blower and it works well for getting most moisture off bike quickly.
 

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This method does it for me (skip the first minute or so if you wish)

 

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Just in case you don't know, be sure and let your bike cool off before washing it. If you don't have any of the cleaning supplies mentioned, maybe run to the store can grab some simple green. I just spray it all over my bike (except instruments, and seat, brake pads) and let it sit for a minute or two and hose it off real good. I use wd-40 to clean the swing arm and wheels. I have used pledge on both my harley and ducati and it cleans the tanks well and is cheap. Now if you get super into cleaning your bike, look up the Master Blaster, it is unit that blows hot compressed air to dry the bike. I have one and it's something I can't live without. Good luck.

Simple green is the shit. Love that stuff.

Also if no one has said it you should lube the chain every time you clean the bike. This improves life and reduces wear. I use Dupont Teflon Chain lube as it stand up better that regular lube in my experience (not much at all). Amazon.com: DuPont(R) Teflon(TM) Chain-Saver Lubricant, Net Wt 11 oz. (CS0110101): Automotive
 

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Don't use a power washer!! If you absolutely can't help yourself, keep the spray away from the wheel bearings!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Don't use a power washer!! If you absolutely can't help yourself, keep the spray away from the wheel bearings!
Adding to this a Public Service Announcement:
Don't use a pressure washer on radial tires (ie, most tires).
Reason is, the water jet coming out of the washer is coming out in pulses (because most pressure washers are piston pumps... you get the pistons' pulsations).

Well, that pulsating stream starts flexing back and forth the radial wires of the tire... debilitating it somewhat.

Maybe it won't affect you... yet just in the off-chance you have a Bugatti Veyron or something of the sort, and regularly do over 200 MPH... don't pressure wash the tires.
 

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Bringing this back from the dead, I know, but I use a small electric pressure washer (maybe 1200psi, probably the smallest available) on bikes and have never had an issue. I also use it under the hood and underneath my trucks. I always keep it about a foot away and take extra precaution to avoid any electrical connectors/terminations, bearings, seals, and the chain. I would never use a gas powered or big electric one (that's what she said?).

Soak the bike(s) in Simple Green, wait 10-15 minutes (not letting it dry), and blast with the pressure washer. Then normal wash with soap/water/mitt and rinse. The FZ gets blow dried with a 6.5hp shop vac.

It's amazing what some SG and a little pressure washer will do.
 

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Adding to this a Public Service Announcement:
Don't use a pressure washer on radial tires (ie, most tires).
Reason is, the water jet coming out of the washer is coming out in pulses (because most pressure washers are piston pumps... you get the pistons' pulsations).

Well, that pulsating stream starts flexing back and forth the radial wires of the tire... debilitating it somewhat.

Maybe it won't affect you... yet just in the off-chance you have a Bugatti Veyron or something of the sort, and regularly do over 200 MPH... don't pressure wash the tires.
So you are saying these water pressure fluctuations have a bigger effect than debris and road irregularities that the tyres run over at high speed?
Can you see why I am incredulous?
 

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Anyone use Plexis? That's what I've always used, I try to not wash the bike if i don't have to. Just spray plexus and wipe down
 

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Anyone use Plexis? That's what I've always used, I try to not wash the bike if i don't have to. Just spray plexus and wipe down
I use plexus on clear windshields only. Everything else gets furniture polish as it does at least as good of a job as Plexus and cost about 1/10 as much. I think the furniture polish actually does better than Plexus because furniture polish leaves a layer of wax behind. The w ax can prevent condensation on bare metal parts (fork tubes, etc.) Which prevents rust.
 
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