Gear Shed

Q:

How can I keep my bike from rusting around salt water?

I live near the ocean, and every part on my bike that isn't aluminum or titanium is rusting. Is there something that could help save my bike?

    Photo: Inc via Shutterstock

Boeshield T-9

Boeshield T-9

A:There are several products out there that will help, Mike, although I won t guarantee all will be perfect. What you want to do is get a thin film of something a little bit waxy or greasy over the metal parts, and then that will fend off moisture that will begin the oxidation process. Silicon spray, for instance, is a generic product that a number of lubricant manufacturers sell (in my garage I have Prestone Silicon Spray about $3 a can) and it works well as a rust inhibitor. Just spray it on and wipe off the excess, or let it dry for extra rust protection.

Another good product is Boeshield T-9, developed by Boeing as a rust inhibitor on aircraft and aircraft parts. It contains lubricants and waxes, has excellent penetrating qualities, and dries to a waxy film that can last for weeks or even months. It s about $7 for four ounces, and is available from places such as Bike Nashbar (nashbar.com). It s also an excellent chain lubricant.

Lastly, linseed oil a drying oil can be rubbed onto bikes and bike parts for a durable, inexpensive rust-preventative. I believe it s one of the ingredients in J.P. Weigle s Frame Saver ($15; competitivecyclist.com) which is often recommended as a treatment for the interior of steel frames: spray it down the seat tube, top tubes and bottom bracket area, and allow to dry.

Any spray-on stuff such as what I ve mentioned may have the side effect of attracting dust, so always use as sparingly as seems reasonable. And try to keep them away from the bike paint, as they ll make it extremely difficult to re-paint the bike, should that ever be necessary.

So how is the bicycling in Morocco? Send us some photos.

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