Chain lubrication is something to forget about, a chore, useful maintenance, or something to obsess about – depending on your take. The fact is, a drive train that is looked after and properly lubricated will last a lot longer and work better as well. Given top-shelf drivetrain parts aren't cheap, and availability isn't always a given, I reckon spending a few more minutes looking after your drivetrain is well worth the investment of time.

Of course, the question arises: what chain lube should you be using? I tested 7 popular options over last summer, to see how long they lasted before reapplication, and how involved the application, reapplication or clean up was. This was far from exhaustive, but if you look up Zero Friction Cycling online you'll probably end up finding more information than you can handle. But you'll get a good understanding of the gains in performance and cost savings that are available.

Mike used the Proteam Lube and Protect Chain Coating through a dry SEQ winter.

Since summer, the Proteam Lube and Protect Chain Coating has landed on my workbench, and I've been using it during our fairly dry winter. It's in a medicinal bottle with a dropper, and it sells for $59.95 for the 50mL bottle, which makes it one of the higher priced chain lubricants. That said, you only use a minimal amount, and the lubricant is said to last a long time in all conditions.

The Proteam lube contains nanoparticles that fill the irregularities in your chain. So the idea being this makes it run smoother and more efficiently.


After more chain lube reviews? Check out some of our other testing below:

The Great AMB Chain Lube Test

TESTED: Squirt eBike Chain Wax and Degreaser 

TESTED: AbsoluteBlack GraphenLube 


In Use:

Following instructions, I degreased and dried my chain before application. The dropper is there for a reason, and I applied one drop per link. It's a little sensitive, so some links got a bit more than they should have. If you like to squirt chain lube on and hit the trails – this is not for you. I then left the chain lube to penetrate the chain and set overnight, as 12 hours is recommended. After wiping off the excess from the side plates the next day – I got riding.

Mike used one drop per link, as per the instructions.

The chain felt nice and smooth. And it's not new. This chain was the last new chain I did the chain testing with over summer, and it's since been to Tasmania in March and seen plenty of use since then. The riding I did over the coming weeks was dusty, with a few creek crossings as well. As you can see in the photos, the chain did show some dust. I got about 18 hours of use before I cleaned it up and reapplied, which gave a similar length of use.

I used 1.5 droppers of lubricant per application, which is apparently a but too much but I guess that represents my dexterity with the dropper. Based on my application and use, I'd be pretty confident in getting a year of riding out of this bottle of lubricant. The setup is a little more fussy than some, but not by a huge margin. Just about every chain lube will suggest that you fully degrease the chain and let it dry before application. And following that, application is often quite precise and requires time to penetrate and set.

Mike's drivetrain after 18 hours of use.

All in all, I found the Proteam Lube and Protect did a really thorough job. But If you're not one to spend time doing proper bike maintenance, it's unlikely to be for you. I was really happy with how it performed, as it ran very quietly and lasted a long time. It was easy to clean up to reapply, and didn't require any specific equipment like a rice cooker. And it didn't take any crazy scrubbing to clean like some of the waxy drip lubes either. Unfortunately, I justs didn't have a full range of conditions to test the lube in. They say it works on the beach , which means salt water in Dutch terms, and if so that's a huge bonus for any fat bike riders. While I didn't ride in the rain, I did take it through plenty of creek crossings and it didn't leave the chain dry. There was some build up of chain lube between degreasing, but less than I'd get with some wax-based lubes.

If you're after an efficient chain lube that works across a range of conditions, I think this is one to try. Yes, it's pricey. But I reckon I could get somewhere between 700 and 1000 riding hours on this container if I didn't spill it, and conditions dependent. And if you ride a lot or have a couple of bikes to look after, it actually ends up pretty good value, and it is one of the better riding chain lubes I have used as well, for sound and feedback.


Hits:

  • Smooth running and long lasting
  • All conditions
  • Efficient use

Misses:

  • Larger initial investment

RRP: $59.95

From: fullbeam.com.au