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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 05:43 PM Thread Starter
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Washing bike in the city

Until this season I've always lived at a place with access to a water hose and a place to hand wash my bikes. Now I'm living in the south loop in a condo and although I do have a private garage (quite tiny though), I do not have access to a water hose. I'm not aware of any self service car washes in the area and generally like to avoid them with my bikes but if you bring your own bucket, cloth and be careful with the high pressure they can work.

I'm thinking of picking up one of these 4 gallon portable sprayers (generally used to spray weeds, etc. in your yard) but not sure how well it will work. Also, has anyone tried the new "rinse less" soap (such as Optimum No Rinse (ONR) Rinse less wash)?

Any ideas or directions to a good place to wash them will be appreciated.

I've attached a pic of the portable sprayer.


- Frank
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 06:06 PM
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There is no way in hell that thing is going to give you any kind of decent water pressure or water volume for that matter. You're better off hauling out 3 buckets of water from your house or apartment. Those things spray out a fine mist which is pretty useless for washing anything IMO. There is very little you can't/shouldn't pressure wash on your bike.

Typically, since I have access to a hose, I only use water on the front to get the bugs off and the rest of the bike I wipe down with Plexus/SP100/Motul Wash & Wax type of product.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 06:23 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagoavatar View Post
Until this season I've always lived at a place with access to a water hose and a place to hand wash my bikes. Now I'm living in the south loop in a condo and although I do have a private garage (quite tiny though), I do not have access to a water hose. I'm not aware of any self service car washes in the area and generally like to avoid them with my bikes but if you bring your own bucket, cloth and be careful with the high pressure they can work.

I'm thinking of picking up one of these 4 gallon portable sprayers (generally used to spray weeds, etc. in your yard) but not sure how well it will work. Also, has anyone tried the new "rinse less" soap (such as Optimum No Rinse (ONR) Rinse less wash)?

Any ideas or directions to a good place to wash them will be appreciated.

I've attached a pic of the portable sprayer.

If your window to your place faces toward where you are going to wash it, run a hose from your room all the way down. No joke.

-Eric
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 06:41 PM
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I haven't used water on my bike since I bought it. Honda polish or S100 FTMFW!
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 06:44 PM
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Never used any sort of water to wash my bike. Why would u need water to wash your bike. I use this 2 part bike wash that comes in a yellow goldish spray bottle. Picked it up from Murray's. After that I use the full zanio brothers system.
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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 06:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evil skinny View Post
Never used any sort of water to wash my bike. Why would u need water to wash your bike. I use this 2 part bike wash that comes in a yellow goldish spray bottle. Picked it up from Murray's. After that I use the full zanio brothers system.
Have you been on the F4T? If you haven't, I can only describe it as the front of your bike looking like the bug holocaust. After bug guts dry up it is just simply too hard to rub all the guts off with a chemical. Sometimes good ol' soap and water does the trick. Besides, water will NOT hurt your bike so why not?
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 07:04 PM
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Just go to a hand wash with the squirter and foaming brush. Keep the squirter far away from the bike as the high pressure can blow lubes out of places you shouldn't. 5 -10 feet away and you get a nice misting action completely soak your bike without issue. Use the brush carefully not pressing down too hard and you'll have no issues. Do a quick wash to get the big particles off, then go home and Plexus or Honda Polish that biatch.

"includes 10 used-car dealers or auto repair shops, 11 liquor stores and bars--two of which advertise lingerie fashion shows and a third billed as a "gentlemen's club"--three cut-rate motels and one trailer park. The squat, brick municipal building is next to a currency exchange and a few steps from an adult video store. The bars open at 10 a.m. and close at 6:30 a.m."

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Something must be fishy...I am going to go poke around in the back end..

Last edited by whiteSeatEnvy; 05-15-2009 at 07:08 PM.
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 07:09 PM
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Another option is to find a local cheerleading team doing a car wash fundraiser.

"includes 10 used-car dealers or auto repair shops, 11 liquor stores and bars--two of which advertise lingerie fashion shows and a third billed as a "gentlemen's club"--three cut-rate motels and one trailer park. The squat, brick municipal building is next to a currency exchange and a few steps from an adult video store. The bars open at 10 a.m. and close at 6:30 a.m."

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 07:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suh-c View Post
Have you been on the F4T? If you haven't, I can only describe it as the front of your bike looking like the bug holocaust. After bug guts dry up it is just simply too hard to rub all the guts off with a chemical. Sometimes good ol' soap and water does the trick. Besides, water will NOT hurt your bike so why not?
Nope but I put about 7k miles a year on my bikes. I use bug and tar remover first if it's needed. And it's easier that way. I used to not have access to a hose cause I lived in an apt and rented a garage. Now the garage I rent down the street has a hot and cold water spigot and I am just so used to waterless washing that I continue on with my old ways.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 07:33 PM
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^^^ Yeah...Old lecherous types can get a real kick out of how the cheerleaders react to washing your bike....OR ....To cut down on the dirty looks from the faculty sponsor and one or two of the cheerleader's Dad's, just have your bike washed at one of the bikini bike washes that are sure to start popping up as the Summer sets in!

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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 07:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagoavatar View Post
I'm thinking of picking up one of these 4 gallon portable sprayers (generally used to spray weeds, etc. in your yard) but not sure how well it will work.
I've been in that situation and used that solution. It works well for rinsing, but not for washing. Get a bucket, sponge and soap and water, wash down, then use the sprayer to rinse down, then dry. No problem.

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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 08:05 PM
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ride it in the rain
problem solved
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 08:07 PM
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anyone else remember the old BMW advertisement...
THere is a guy polishing his bike in the driveway - then on the next page a guy riding a GS through a stream
and it said
"some people polish their bikes, I wash mine"

brilliant
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 09:13 PM Thread Starter
Done got slower
 
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Thanks for all the suggestion.....the cheerleader option is the best , but sadly I'm an old guy with no such connections

Our unit is on the 7th floor or the running the hose out the window would have already been done. I stopped at Home Depot on my way home and the portable sprayers didn't look like they would work too well but maybe worth a try....I can always just return it if it's no good for rinsing. Will probably buy a large mop bucket with wheels I can fill with soapy water and just roll it out to the garage. For my Speed Triple this is all easier but I'm picking up a Road King next week and to be honest the thought of all those nooks and crannies filled with dirt and chrome is starting to make me sick. I did catch the end of 'Wild Hogs' on cable tonight so I got some good ideas for riding apparel though

I have some Honda polish someplace but never used it...I think I ordered it and thought it was a spray but it came in tube.

Edit: anybody know of a self service car wash around the south loop?

- Frank
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 10:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagoavatar View Post
Thanks for all the suggestion.....the cheerleader option is the best , but sadly I'm an old guy with no such connections

Our unit is on the 7th floor or the running the hose out the window would have already been done. I stopped at Home Depot on my way home and the portable sprayers didn't look like they would work too well but maybe worth a try....I can always just return it if it's no good for rinsing. Will probably buy a large mop bucket with wheels I can fill with soapy water and just roll it out to the garage. For my Speed Triple this is all easier but I'm picking up a Road King next week and to be honest the thought of all those nooks and crannies filled with dirt and chrome is starting to make me sick. I did catch the end of 'Wild Hogs' on cable tonight so I got some good ideas for riding apparel though

I have some Honda polish someplace but never used it...I think I ordered it and thought it was a spray but it came in tube.

Edit: anybody know of a self service car wash around the south loop?
Just take it to the dealer. I thought most harley dealers had a steam cleaning booth.
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post #16 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-15-2009, 10:42 PM
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For people that never use water on the bike - do you ride in the rain? Or right after it rained? Sometimes there is literally a thick layer of dried up dirt on the bike... I have no idea how it is possible to remove it without spraying and not scratch the shit out of the surface underneath.

- Stas

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post #17 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-16-2009, 01:10 AM
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Feel free to bring the S3 to my house anytime and wash it. The b-king, well, you are on your own there.

I never used any of the waterless cleaners until I picked up a can of SP100 from Chicago Performance. It works really well, ESP with removing bugs. It made black paint look awesome.

Last edited by Dave13; 05-16-2009 at 01:13 AM.
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post #18 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-16-2009, 07:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whiteSeatEnvy View Post
Just go to a hand wash with the squirter and foaming brush. Keep the squirter far away from the bike as the high pressure can blow lubes out of places you shouldn't. 5 -10 feet away and you get a nice misting action completely soak your bike without issue. Use the brush carefully not pressing down too hard and you'll have no issues. Do a quick wash to get the big particles off, then go home and Plexus or Honda Polish that biatch.
This is my usual plan of attack. A KEY step was missed in the process tho. Gotta make sure you use the high pressure spray to clean of the brush before you use it to get rid of anything left in it from the nasty car that used it last.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave13 View Post
Feel free to bring the S3 to my house anytime and wash it. The b-king, well, you are on your own there.

I never used any of the waterless cleaners until I picked up a can of SP100 from Chicago Performance. It works really well, ESP with removing bugs. It made black paint look awesome.
I got the same stuff from Ken, but I would suggest spraying it on the rag then wiping down the bike instead of spraying the bike. I got white spots all over in places i can't reach with a rag from over spray and sitting outside in the rain doesn't get rid of them.

Adam
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post #19 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-16-2009, 07:40 AM
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This stuff works better than anything I have found....... especially for cruisers with
chrome and aluminum and lots of nooks and crannies.....

http://www.suzukicycles.com/Accessor...goryView=false


Two buckets of water and no scrubbing ...... done.


For regular maintenance it's Honda Spray Cleaner and Polish ( which is a spray can )
Works great , cleans and polishes and prevents gunk from sticking.


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post #20 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-16-2009, 09:16 AM
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just in case nobody has mentioned it.. if you go to a car wash be really careful with the high pressure spray and your radiator fins...

maybe I am just overly cautious or maybe it's old news... but i had to replace a radiator at a dealership on a 97 9r due to someone washing it with a pressure washer and bending the fins....

to be honest it still kept overheating, and it tirned out the head gasket was shot.. but the mechanic there told me it was a somewhat common thing, people would blast the radiator with the high pressure water and it was strong enough to flatten out the fins
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post #21 of 21 (permalink) Old 05-24-2009, 08:10 PM Thread Starter
Done got slower
 
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Just wanted to give an update here for anyone else in a similar bike washing situation.

I ended up ordering a "Hudson Water Wagon" and it works great for my needs. I used it to wash the Road King and it was pretty grimy. It holds 3 gallons and has a shower head style spray. It's not high pressure but works very good for rinsing, etc. For a quick wash you'd probably only have to fill it once but for a detailed cleaning on a fairly dirty bike I filled it 3 times. The hose is pretty long so I was pretty much able to reach all around the bike without having to move the unit around. Here's the info (I ordered mine from ebay for $46 including tax and shipping)

http://www.hdhudson.com/catalog.html

Quote:
Hudson Water Wagon™ Soft Shower

Multiple uses wherever a supply of pressurized water is needed. No lifting or carrying . . .easily rolls on big wheels over any terrain. Take camping to shower, wash dishes, clean off feet before entering tent or motor home, clean fish, etc. Fill and leave in sun a short time to warm water . . . use rain-soft shower to bathe your pet. No more baths with cold water from a garden hose! Cool off the kids after a hot game, use as water supply on boat . . . the uses are almost endless.

* Full 3-gallon (11 liter) size.
* Oversize handle makes it easy to pull.
* Extra long-reaching hose for greater convenience.
* High efficiency pump with comfort-grip handle. Pressurize faster with fewer strokes.
* Large, poly full shower head. Instant on and off.


- Frank
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