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I feel this is probably a dumb question, but If i don't ask it, I won't know.

I see all the posts of spotless clean bikes. My bike needs a bath. Are there any tips/tricks i need to know to save me time/money? Soaps, degreasers, do's & don'ts? Should bike be cold or warm...etc...any helpful information is appreciated.

Rodney
 

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No Reason To Be Serious
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Bikini Bike Washes are pretty good....:D

Actually, I'd suggest doing it with the bike cold and first spray it with S100 Total Cycle Cleaner real good, then rub the bugs off the front and spray the whole bike with a hard spray of water, until you've rinse off all the S100.. It works pretty good for me.... Then blow dry the whole thing with your leaf blower......

Then follow it up with a rubbing of Pledge furniture polish....

:patriot:

Spoiler
 

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A Texan
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Let's see, where to begin.

I try and wash the bike in sections. I use water and dish washing soap as the main cleaner. Pre soak an area with water using a nozzle to control the amount. Just run water on her slowly. Soap and wash an area then rinse, starting with the handle bars - working down to the front fender and back to the rear. Do the wheels and tires last.

To finish there are chrome cleaner/polish, aluminum cleaner/polish, leather treatment products, bug cleaners, wax, tire cleaner, and Multi-function Pledge.

I have soft clothes for washing, toothbrushes, a little power brush set from WalMart that has an assortment of ends ( this little tool is invaluable to me for cleaning bugs, mud and crud in places you can't get your hands and fingers), chamois, leaf blower and of Micro fibre rags.

Oh, you will need an abundance of elbow grease .... and time, usually around 4-5 hours for me.


 

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Reeling Jackwagon
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Turtle Wax car soap and Meguliar's cleaner wax at least once a month or more. Multi-surface Pledge and a microfiber towel in between.
 

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ahhhh, youre fat, ugly, bald and broke...why bother? doesnt matter what you do, the women still wont want to ride with you anyway :eek:. thats from one to another :D.

i just use soap and water...and sometimes wipe down with pledge (im a tightwad though...i use the cheap generic stuff)
 

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A friend recommended to me years ago when I asked that same question, to go to Autozone and buy a kit made by Mr. Clean I think it is. The original investment is about $ 20.00 for the kit. A bottle of soap for the kit will last you about 2 Summers. The only thing you'll use up a little faster will be the "spot free" rinse that you spray on at the end. Soap and rinse stuff costs about $ 5.00 per bottle.
Then do like others have suggested and use a leaf blower to dry. Mine really dries fast because the spot free rinse beads up the water and it runs off quickly. The dispenser gun of mine still works great after 5 years. I just buy the soap and rinse stuff when I run out.
 

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If I took 4-5 hours to clean my bike, I' d go crazy!! first of all, I have a long dirt driveway so after a good clean, it gets dirty after I get to the bottom of the driveway, but when i do clean the bike, i use a bucket with soapy water and various implements....brush, sponge,mitt.......and then soak the bike then soap the bike then rinse the bike.....occasionally I get industrious and use some sort of polish, one that takes minutes, not hours! between washes, I clean with either pledge and a microfiber cloth or a was and clean detail spray, usually Meguire's....when I dry the bike, I use an electric leaf blower...not gas...dont want oil spraying all over the bike!
 

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High-Tech *******
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Soap and water here too. First I use rain-x bug and tar remover to clean the little buggers off, then I use a meguiars car wash soap, then dry every thing by hand with a microfiber towl. Then I apply NuFinish wax on the painted bits, polish (white diamond is what I'm using now) on the shiny bits. Bout 3-4 hours for a good solid show clean. I do that once maybe twice a month. In between I'll just pledge it.
 

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Cajun Shine!!
 

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Turtle wax car wash from Walmart (1 bottle lasts a LONG TIME), the same hand mit that I use for my cars, and then an old bath towel to dry. I then run her for a few minutes to get all the nook and crannies dried and to "maintain" for the week after or so, Windex and a cloth to spot clean.
 

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Honda cleaner and polish spray can and a diaper cloth, works great! And for those that say this method scratches the paint, you would need to go thru the layer(s) of clear coat first before getting to the paint which will never happen.:patriot:
 

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A Texan
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If I took 4-5 hours to clean my bike, I' d go crazy!! first of all, I have a long dirt driveway so after a good clean, it gets dirty after I get to the bottom of the driveway, but when i do clean the bike, i use a bucket with soapy water and various implements....brush, sponge,mitt.......and then soak the bike then soap the bike then rinse the bike.....occasionally I get industrious and use some sort of polish, one that takes minutes, not hours! between washes, I clean with either pledge and a microfiber cloth or a was and clean detail spray, usually Meguire's....when I dry the bike, I use an electric leaf blower...not gas...dont want oil spraying all over the bike!
Doesn't bother me I guess, one of the perks of being certifiably "NUTS". Bike cleaning time is Therapy and quiet time. Just the radio, bike and me. ( :(..No one else wants to help me clean it...:( )
 

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Use a good car wash, do it sections. I use a leaf blower (reserved for the bike) that I dry it off with. Than I use Jeff Bodiens Frenzy Wax (works on the whole bike, winshield, pipes, tins, etc). After you use the wax all you'll need (after a ride) is a damp cloth (to wipe off any dirt/bugs) and a dry cloth to dry it off. I wash my bike once a year and it's always spotless, takes less than ten minutes to wipe it down after a ride.
 

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Said it before and I'll say it again...
Cleaning you bike is like wiping your butt,
You can wipe on it all you want but if you want it clean you gotta use soap and water.

Some say not to use dish washing liquid, others use it with no problem. I use something made for vehicles (McGuires, Armourall, Mother's ...whatever) and not for dishes.
Not sure if it would be a problem but I used to use dishwashing liquid on my truck but when I switched to McGuires I got better results. So now that's all I use on my bike too.

And I enjoy spending a few hours cleaning my bike too. Just hanging out in the driveway , having a beer (or two) and working on the bike. I use Honda spray cleaner to clean it up in between washes which I do every few weeks or so. Dont be afraid of the water hose either. Just don't flood it, especially around the battery and switches on the bars. I'll put a little wax on it about every 3rd wash. Only takes a few minutes.
 

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No Reason To Be Serious
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ahhhh, youre fat, ugly, bald and broke...why bother? doesnt matter what you do, the women still wont want to ride with you anyway :eek:. .....
KR:

Sometimes you just gotta state the obvious don't you..:D.. I guess I can change my screen name now to Fat, Ugly, Bald, and Broke #2 then as well.

Spoiler
 

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KR:

Sometimes you just gotta state the obvious don't you..:D.. I guess I can change my screen name now to Fat, Ugly, Bald, and Broke #2 then as well.

Soiler
you forgot "difficult to stay vertical" too :bleh:
 

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I wash it every three weeks or so. I use a hose nozzle with a soap reservoir; it can spray a thin stream of soapy water at high pressure into those tiny spaces. A couple times a year I'll use Pimp Stix to get the stubborn stuff. Any soap that won't poison plants. Soft, absorbent cloth such as old t-shirts. Dries fast in LA. Then a coat of Turtle Wax.
 

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The guitar, not the fish!
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Honda cleaner and polish spray can and a diaper cloth, works great! And for those that say this method scratches the paint, you would need to go thru the layer(s) of clear coat first before getting to the paint which will never happen.:patriot:
Trust me, factory clearcoat is VERY thin....Doesn't take much of a scratch to go right through it...Honda didn't give each bike a custom paint job....A shot of color and shot of clear, then curing for assembly....Had some scratches in my front fender that I tried to fix by wet-sanding with 2000 grit...Got into the color in no time and made it look even worse than the scratches did...
 

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Summer detailing
As summer approaches one should prepare their bikes for
warm temperatures and the sun’s damaging UV rays. This
means your paint should have a fresh coat of wax to prevent the
sun from fading your paint, especially red bikes, as this color is
the most prone to oxidation. Having a fresh coat of wax also
facilitates easier removal of bugs and tar from the paint. I also like to focus on applying a
wax or paint sealant to all winhshields and lights to make riding in
the rain (If your caught off guard)much safer. At highway speeds the rain will bead and fly off the windshield in a very dramatic fashion. When detailing bags or seats materials should be dressed with a product that includes UV inhibitors to prevent the sun from prematurely fading and cracking the surfaces. As the temperatures increase, your brakes pads will produce more brake dust, which means your wheels should be waxed or polished with a product that also seals as well to ensure no brake dust
etches into the wheel’s surface. Enjoy!!!!:cool:
 
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