If Savile Row Made Chain Lubes…

by Chikashi

NFS for SilcaI have yet to decide which I dislike more, a noisy chain or a dirty chain. I had been using a  wax-based chain lubricant, White Lightning Clean Ride, because I wanted to minimise the need to clean the chain frequently and to avoid the chain ‘tattoo’ on the right leg resulting from touching the contaminated chain oil. I recently ditched the Clean Ride and switched to an oil-based chain lube.

I was sold on the theory of how a wax-based lubricant can minimise friction whilst expelling contamints as the rollers of the chain moved, which is why I started using Clean Ride several years ago. It meant that the chain needed cleaning less frequently whilst running smoothly and silently without the dirt-atttracting oil. Nice theory. Reality didn’t live up to the theory, but the problem was finding a better alternative. I switched to Pedro’s oil-based Go! chain lube for a little while but wasn’t impressed. Consequently, I went back to Clean Ride.

And then, I caught onto a lot of fuss being made about a chain lube that Josh Simonds cooked up, Nix Frix Shun. Silent, smooth running and long lasting even in nasty conditions. It sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it?

Simonds was asked by Joshua Poertner of the new Silca to cook up a more ‘performance’ version of the lube and came up with a slightly lighter sauce, which is what I have been using for the last 2000 km. It does what it says on the tin. It is impressive: quiet, smooth, and lasts longer than anything else I’ve tried. Additionally, both NFS and Silca claim that the little bottle will last 16,000 km, but I think that it is a conservative estimate.

Because unlike other products on the market, it is 100% lube and solvent-free, it does smell like motor oil. Therefore, it’s not for aromatherapy unless you’re a certifiable motorhead. However, it is that way for a very good reason: no solvents.

What surprises me even more is the fact it seems easier to keep the chain clean. It doesn’t seem to attract all that much dirt.

The little bottle is full of surprises.

I would be interested in trying the original NFS sauce as well, perhaps in winter.

Get one. You’ll be delighted.