South African company Smoove have developed a product that works brilliantly in Australian conditions.
Australian riding conditions are quite different compared to where much of the bike industry is based in both Europe and North America. But thankfully, due west of us, South Africa is mountain bike mad and they churn out some products perfect for our conditions. Smoove Lube might just be the next one.
Finding the right chain lube involves understanding the demands of your riding, the trail conditions, and how committed you are to drivetrain maintenance. Smoove claims to be long-lasting in wet or dry conditions, improving shifting performance and increasing drivetrain life – all things most riders would jump at.
We chose to test Smoove at the recent Crocodile Trophy mountain bike race, putting it through eight days and over 30 hours of dry, wet, dusty, sandy and gritty riding. Smoove recommends lubing the drivetrain inside the chain and letting it set overnight, which we did daily.
The shifting was great, the drivetrain ran quietly, and it was pretty easy to clean up day-to-day, with a quick wipe that left lube on the rollers and the outer plates clean. We did find though on long, wet days with river crossings or when left out in a heavy dew, the chain lube didn’t quite have the tenacity of an oil-based lubricant. It isn’t uncommon for a chain to run dry in these conditions, but we did feel a wet lube might have lasted longer. The trade off would be more cleaning of the drivetrain.
Like most waxier lubes, Smoove did build up on the jockey wheels, inside the cassette and on chainrings. Wiping the pulleys and ring post application (but not the chain) should reduce that.
If your riding doesn’t normally top five hours of demanding pedal pushing in wet conditions, chances are you’ll love this lube. Smoove Lube is no miracle cure for finding the right chain lube but it’s pretty close to perfect for Australian conditions.
- Runs quietly
- Lasts well in dry and damp conditions
- Not as long-lasting as heavy wet lube