Last summer, Squirt Lube told us about a project with KMC to offer their chains pre-coated with Squirt’s wax emulsion lube. They’d come raw and ungreased from the factory, soaked in Squirt, then packaged for end use. Why avoid the factory grease? Here’s how founder Dewet Marais explains it:
The idea behind these chains is “making life easy”, combined with longer drive train life. So the feature is not that there is some Squirt lube on the chain (although that is an advantage already), but that there is no factory grease on the chain. As everybody knows, factory grease is sticky and gets dirty, and has to be removed before Squirt can be used with the best results, as Squirt has to penetrate into the small openings between the pins and plates and rollers, which is prevented by factory grease. To make matters worse, factory grease immediately starts picking up dirt, forming a tough grinding paste, causing damage to your new chain. It is a tedious, dirty and mostly unsuccessful job to clean factory grease off – now not necessary anymore. The full nickel plating also contributes to chain longevity.
We’ve reviewed Squirt Lube very positively and it remains one of my go-to products. The pic above is from Dewet’s bike after two months of only off road riding and, according to him, only two dry brush cleanings with no degreaser or other solvents.
The chains are full nickel plated inner and outer links and are available for 9-speed ($36) and 10-speed ($48) drivetrains. Eleven speed versions should be coming by July. Dewet says they’ve tested on both SRAM and Shimano groups and seen good performance, and KMC claims compatibility with all brands.