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Chain-L Lube Lube

4.8/5 (54 Reviews)
MSRP : $11.99


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Product Description

Three most important requirements of a chain lubricant:

  • Lubrication
  • Lubrication
  • and Lubrication

    While properties like external cleanliness may seem important, the fact is that internal wear of the 112 overloaded, overworked and overlooked bearings is what destroys chains. A road cyclist, riding first-tier equipment, will typically wear a chain out in as little as 50* hours of use -- often destroying the cassette or chainrings in the process. On a high-end bike, drivetrain wear is the most expensive maintenance cost per mile.

    That’s why, when developing Chain-L, we approached is as a bearing- wear problem and formulated it consistent with our theory of how chains wear and how best to combat it. We then road tested with racers, messengers, shop staff and others; refining it over the span of almost a year before we began selling to the public in the fall of 2007.

    Rather than bore you with sales hype or smoke and mirrors, we prefer to follow the old adage that the “proof of the pudding is in the eating” and encourage you to give it a try and see for yourself if Chain-L is something you should be using.



  • Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating

    Reviews 1 - 15 (54 Reviews Total) | Next 15

    User Reviews

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Peter a Cross Country Rider

    Date Reviewed: January 31, 2014

    Strengths:    Highly durable, silencer, pretty cheap, easy clean up.

    Weaknesses:    None, really, unless you really over-do it...

    Bottom Line:   
    I have used this since its introduction in 2008 was it or 07. This is by far the best bike chain lube I have ever used and I won't switch. I have used all the other stuff, some was ok, some not so much, but here is the scoop on this stuff: I ride my urban bike( 29r rigid) everywhere in town and I ride it in all wether , 5 days a week without exceptions. Chain l endures 3-5 rides in the pouring rain ('bout 50-60 milles for me), and it last more than a month in the summer. Its easy to apply(I don't do the put on and wipe off, just smear some on there and that's it) and unless you over do it, it does not build up. Its excellent in hot weather(hottest it got here was 102 last year) and extremely cold(12 this winter). I get consistent performance and I don't even use the entire bottle for the whole year! It totally keeps your rusty junk chain quiet and it surely protects the chain from wear. I'm not a hard rider but I got about 7000 miles out of my last 8sp xt drive on the 29r, and that used only chain-l. Now that's some good stuff! I also use it on my MTB and on my DeRosa's Campy Record 10sp. We also use it on our fleet bikes at Bike And Roll and It does a perfect job! I highly recommend it, just be moderate with its application! It really does not take much and applying it and wiping it off is just a waste...

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   The one with all the bear crap on it...

    Duration Product Used:   more than 5 years

    Purchased At:   Directly from Franci

    Similar Products Used:   Shimano Slippery spit(remember that?), All Finish Line products(all decent except the ceramic crap), Rock and Roll(junk), T9(junk), Triflow(ok), Trflow Organic(total Crap!) And a bunch of other come-and-go hipster junk...

    Bike Setup:   Raleigh 29r 08, full XTR 1x9. Is the one I ride daily...

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Aba Grizzly

    Date Reviewed: September 29, 2013

    Strengths:    Long-lasting all-in-one all-seasons all-terrain lube

    Weaknesses:    None

    Bottom Line:   
    I'm using it for dusty powdery trails. The only one that gives me peace of mind and silence for 60 kms of riding. None of any other commercial lube not even close.

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by pelts79

    Date Reviewed: August 24, 2013

    Strengths:    This is the best lube I have tried. It endures anything from fine dust to heavy water. Best stuff on the market in my opinion and I have used quite a few of them. This stuff makes your drive train run as smooth as butter. I'm not concerned about how shinny and clean my drive train looks, I'm more concerned how well lubed it is.

    Weaknesses:    Can build up some gunk if over applied, but it's a drive train, it's not meant to look pretty.

    Bottom Line:   
    Been using this stuff for a couple of years with great results form desert to wet riding conditions.

    Overall Rating:4
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Johan Greeff a Cross Country Rider

    Date Reviewed: December 24, 2012

    Strengths:    Smooooooth, quiet, does not wash off - ever. If you are not getting exactly that result, you have two left hands and lack opposing thumbs. Just follow the instructions.

    Weaknesses:    The bottle. Does a dentist work on your fillings with a power drill? Then why use a bottle that spills way too much lube when you need SO LITTLE. Little lube is the key here.

    Bottom Line:   
    I ditched the bottle. I use an old Joe's lube bottle. The nossle is so fine, the lube only comes out when I warm the lube up a bit - perfect, because it then creeps into the rollers. A tiny drop is enough! I lube/wipe down a section at a time - the outside of the chain stays dry! And the results are amazing. But the bottle sucks.
    I bought this lube out of desperation. Chains take a beating in winter. Between the snow/ice/water and the salt on the roads, nothing keeps a chain happy - untill now!

    Expand full review >>

    Similar Products Used:   Don't get me started.... THE LIES!!!!

    Bike Setup:   Silverback Storm 29er, Fulcrum UST wheels, XT 2x10, Fox F29RL

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:4
    Submitted by alan

    Date Reviewed: November 10, 2012

    Strengths:    long lasting, quiets drive train, clean when used properly

    Weaknesses:    spendy compared to a lot of other options

    Bottom Line:   
    I love this stuff. I've been on a quest for nearly thirty years to find the best chain lube and since I've found this I haven't been looking much more. It really lasts and keeps the chain running quietly. I can go quite a while between applications. Harsh conditions require more frequent applications of course, but I might get 4-5 rides before needing to reapply - just hose things down and wipe the chain down, vs some lubes that don't even make it through the ride.

    Cleanliness: My chain is as clean or cleaner than it has been with most other lubes. To have it be clean, you need do follow the proper application techniques. If you over do it and don't wipe the chain down well after application, as well as on a regular basis, it it will get dirty. This lube keeps the chain from getting as dirty as others though because it stays put inside the chain. Others keep working their way out of the chain.

    Application: I've found the following to work quite well
    1) Use a chain catcher to keep the extra lube off of the cassette. Put the chain on the big ring so it is easier to clean the excess off after application.
    2) Wipe the chain down well. You may have to do more than this if it is really dirty.
    3) Apply just enough to each roller. Work on a few rollers at a time, starting at the derailleur. By the time the lubed section reaches the chainring it should have started to soak in.
    4) Once every roller is lubed, use a heat gun to warm the chain as you slowly rotate the cranks backwards. This will accelerate the wicking of the lube into the chain.
    5) Wipe the chain down well. Usually I do this with a dry rag, but I've also used a wax based lube (Like Rock n Roll) sprayed on a rag to wipe the chain down. Wipe the chainring down as well.
    6) Wipe the chain down often (every ride if conditions require it, but clean road rides don't require this as often). Like above, usually a dry rag is sufficient.
    7) Avoid reapplying when it isn't necessary. I like to tend to my bikes and am prone to overlubing, but I find that wiping things down is usually enough. When things get dry and noisy, then I reapply.

    happy pedaling.

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by zbear a All Mountain Rider

    Date Reviewed: October 15, 2012

    Strengths:    Best chain lube period!

    Weaknesses:    None

    Bottom Line:   
    I've tried a lot of chain lubes out there and Chain-L is the best. Chain-L isn't a big company backed by big advertising dollars, but it's the best chain lube I've used. I've used ProGold ProLink Chain, TriFlow, Finish Line Dry Teflon, Finish Line Wet, and even DW40.

    Chain-L is thick and sticky and stays on the chain. Shifts are silky smooth and the drivetrain is completely silent. The metal to metal contact feeling and sound is almost nonexistent.

    Works well in all conditions: dry, wet, muddy.

    Expand full review >>

    Similar Products Used:   ProGold ProLink Chain
    TriFlow
    Finish Line Dry Teflon
    Finish Line Wet
    DW40


    Bike Setup:   2012 Cannondale Jekyll
    2007 Specialized SWorks Tarmac SL

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by MarcoL a Weekend Warrior

    Date Reviewed: September 5, 2012

    Strengths:    Works excellent on wet, on hot sand, on mug, on water...

    Weaknesses:    smells on the first hour...have to take some time to get it hot and lube, but you save more time after...

    Bottom Line:   
    I have used this Lube on many races; La Ruta in Costa Rica, many river crossings, lots of mud, my friend use to lube every river crossing, and I did not!
    Titan Dessert on the morocco desert, lots of sand!! and the chain is only lubed on the inside, just clean with a rag aver day, this was a 6 day stage race, and 700 kms! lube every 2 day after the race...
    Transportugal Race, 1200 kms, the lube worked again very well,
    I even use this one on my road bike every 500 kms, very good product..

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   la vereda de don toño

    Duration Product Used:   depends on the trail

    Price Paid:    $20.00

    Purchased At:   usa

    Similar Products Used:   white lighting, clean and epic, and many more

    Bike Setup:   epic s works 29", schmolke seat post, handlebar, extralite stem, carbon ti chainrings, xtr, and magura 8 brakes.
    colnago eps, campy, ciamillo gravitas and lightweight wheels

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by kevin29r a Cross Country Rider from Baltimore, MD, USA

    Date Reviewed: November 14, 2011

    Strengths:    Quiet running, long lasting, water resistant, reduced maintenance, small amount needed per chain, easy to apply, wicks inside the rollers, dependable after crossing streams

    Weaknesses:    Attacts dirt, but after stream crossings wet chains pick up dust regardless of lube used.

    Bottom Line:   
    This is a back to basics chain lube of a heavy mineral oil type with friction modifiers. Think of it as a heavy duty lube similar to that of automotive use. Chains are under extreme pressure and need a heavy duty oil that stays inside the rollers. Thinner lubes allow more metal to metal contact. The thicker lube tends to occupy the gaps between roller and side plates so the dirt is mostly on the outside of the chain. Just wipe off the outside before each ride. I usually get 8 or so rides of about 13 miles each with 6 or so stream crossings before I decide to clean and re-lube. There is no rust on the chain with Chain-L. Lighter lubes resulted in a dirty chain also and required lubing and wiping and re-lubing after every ride.

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Patapsco Avalon trails

    Duration Product Used:   6 months

    Price Paid:    $12.00

    Purchased At:   Online from Chain-L

    Similar Products Used:   Prolink, Icewax, Triflow, Dupont Teflon spray

    Bike Setup:   Fisher HiFi Pro

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by joefi a Cross Country Rider from Pittsburgh

    Date Reviewed: September 13, 2011

    Strengths:    Durable and fuss free. Great for commuter bikes dealing with rain, snow and mud.

    Weaknesses:    Time consuming application, but well worth the wait.

    Bottom Line:   
    Excellent Product. Follow the directions and you won't be dissapointed. I'm a maintenance geek, but the chain is now one component that I don't have to lose sleep over. Yeah, I was skeptical about this stuff, but it's been the best lube I've put on my mountain bike and commuter bike that I don't have to fuss with. I still wipe my chain from time to time, and clean my cassette and chainrings to help extend the life of my components, but the nice thing about this lube is that you don’t have to worry about it wearing off in the middle of your ride (b/c of muddy conditions or rain).

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   PA

    Duration Product Used:   6 months

    Price Paid:    $4.00

    Purchased At:   Online website

    Similar Products Used:   Rock'n'Roll Extreme, Pro-Gold, Pedros, Finish Line Wet, Squirt.

    Bike Setup:   1999 Litespeed Obed, Chris King hub, headset, bottom bracket, Thomson stem & post, SRAM X0, Avid Black Ops levers with BB7 160mm front & Black Ops Ultimate V-Brakes. Manitou 100mm Minute MRD ABS+

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by PissedOffCil a Weekend Warrior

    Date Reviewed: August 27, 2011

    Strengths:    Holds on to your chain like no other lube
    Lubes for a long time, even in the worst conditions


    Weaknesses:    Smells bad, but I only care when I leave my biek in the car

    Bottom Line:   
    This is by far the best lube I have ever used and I'll never use anything else. We had a very muddy summer this year and often it rained in races, this lube has kept my chains lubed in all these foul conditions and then some. I used it on all my mountain bikes and my GFs as well. Going to some endurance races in the next weeks, I won't leave without it!

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   1 Year

    Price Paid:    $15.00

    Similar Products Used:   Name it I probably tried it. My 2nd best lube would be Finish Line wet though.


    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by Shawnc a Weekend Warrior from Millbrae, CA

    Date Reviewed: May 28, 2011

    Strengths:    I have used this lube in sand, dust, mud, creek-crossing and it keeps going. Minimal re-lube required and it keeps the drive-train ultra quite and smooth.

    Weaknesses:    The only potential weakness is the initial application process, but the extra 10 minutes is a small price to pay for a smooth, clean, long-lasting drivetrain

    Bottom Line:   
    Simply the best lube for your bike. I was concerned that it would be messier than the dry lubes I had previously been using for summer conditions, but found the complete opposite to be the case. Since you only need to apply it very infrequently and wipe off the excess, there is very little lube on the outside of the chain to collect dirt. The majority of the lube stays IN the chain, doing what is suppose to do. I've found that my drive-chain stays noticably cleaner with significantly less effort than require with other lubes. Chain-L is simply the best chain-lube I've used. Invest the extra 10 minutes upfront to apply it according to the directions and you'll be rewarded mile after mile after mile. Not to mention, the price cannot be beat!

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Keystone Basin

    Duration Product Used:   1 Year

    Price Paid:    $12.00

    Purchased At:   http://www.chain-l.c

    Similar Products Used:   Dumonde Tech, White Lightning, Boeshield, Prolink, Finish Line, Pedros Syn Lube, Pedros Ice Lube, Philwood, etc....

    Bike Setup:   Intense Tracer VP, Zion 853EBB, Cervelo R3SL

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by rollinn a Cross Country Rider from Laguna Beach Ca USA

    Date Reviewed: May 20, 2011

    Strengths:    Works super well!!! Quiets the chain ALOT and the shifting improved tremendously.

    Weaknesses:    Its a bit messy- but you know what, anything that works as well as this- I will accept some mess as it is a mtn bike anyhow..

    Bottom Line:   
    This is a superb product!!! I have used prolink for years- and after trying Chain-L no way I could go back to anything else.. Its really that good. Not to mention the fols at Chain-L are so nice they make the experience very pleasing. Whoever switches to Chain-L will be beyond happy!!!

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Aliso Woods

    Duration Product Used:   6 months

    Price Paid:    $12.00

    Purchased At:   chain-l

    Similar Products Used:   prolink, white lightning, finish line etc.

    Bike Setup:   Yeti 575 w/ all the goods. Ibis Mojo SL w/ even more goods

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by dontheclysdale a Racer from TX

    Date Reviewed: May 11, 2011

    Strengths:    Last a LONG time, works well even when the chain is filthy

    Bottom Line:   
    I really like the Chain-L lube. It requires a little more work to lube the chain than normal but not enough to sway my decision to use it. It seems to last a LOT longer than Prolink and Finishline and the chain is a lot quieter. A quick wipe of the chain after a ride to remove the dirt and it's good to go no need to reapply lube every 100 or so miles. I did an SS race in very dry and dusty conditions and though me, the bike, and the chain were all white from the dust the chain was quiet and still pulled smooth as if it were still fresh lubed. The really noticeable thing I like is when riding on the road and cruising at 95-100 cadence, the sound of the chain is almost quiet but the sound you can hear is like a "well oiled machine" just smoothly operating. The even cooler part, after 400 miles it's still making this sound with no extra lube added. Previously I was lubing my road chain ever 100-150miles. A little added upfront maintenance time applying the lube makes up for time down the road by not having to lube the chain so often.

    Expand full review >>

    Duration Product Used:   3 months

    Similar Products Used:   ProLink, FinishLine, White Lightning, WD-40 (kidding), RockNRoll


    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by mtber3737 a Cross Country Rider from Laguna Niguel, CA

    Date Reviewed: May 3, 2011

    Strengths:    Works! Quiets the chain & improves shifting.

    Weaknesses:    Can be a little messy... but what the hell, we're mountain bikers... live with it!

    Bottom Line:   
    I'll be 70 this year and I'm sceptical as hell. I've been riding mountain bikes before some of you were born. Bottom line: There's others out there and some work and some don't ... this stuff works!

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   Just Outstanding

    Duration Product Used:   2 Years

    Price Paid:    $12.00

    Purchased At:   On-Line

    Similar Products Used:   You name it, I've tried about everything else on the market and a few that weren't.

    Bike Setup:   Tallboy. Weights about 25 lbs ... a lot less than my wife ... but not as pretty.

    Overall Rating:5
    Value Rating:5
    Submitted by tiSS'er a Cross Country Rider from Phoenix, AZ

    Date Reviewed: April 27, 2011

    Strengths:    quiet, long lasting, clean, smooths out your transmission

    Weaknesses:    application

    Bottom Line:   
    I ride 4-6 times per week in the very dry and dusty Phoenix desert. I am always looking for the next best thing, especially if it is going to extend the life of my bike.

    After Francis offered the free sample here on MTB a few years back, I have been a believer in ChainL. My chain is much quieter than anything else I have used, my chain feels like it has some sort of "dampening" to it when I accelerate or shift. Rather than getting a clunking feel, the bike is smooth. My bike shifts much better for longer.

    I recently tried a few brands of Bar and Chain oil and came away unimpressed. The lube worked great for one ride, but then my chain would get louder, and shifting performance would drop. I typically get 3-4 rides on ChainL, and could probably get more, but I tend to be on the safe side and overlube.

    I have a great system for application. I remove the chain from the bike, wipe it down quick, put one drop on each link and wait about an hour. Wipe the chain down, throw it back on and pedal the bike. Wipe the chain down again and I am all set. By taking the chain off the bike, my pulleys, chainrings, and cassette stay exceptionally clean with no buildup. I think for many people this is a turn off, however, I simply find the application only takes a few minutes and I do it once for several rides.

    I like the stuff so much, i just ordered 3 more bottles. At $12 it is a steal, and will last me for quite some time.

    Expand full review >>

    Favorite Trail:   National

    Duration Product Used:   2 Years

    Price Paid:    $12.00

    Purchased At:   www.chainl.com

    Similar Products Used:   bar oil, RNR Extreme and Gold, Tri-Flow, Maima Chain Wax, Bel Ray Super Clean, T9 Boeshield, Dumonde, ATB

    Bike Setup:   Knolly Endorphin, Knolly Podium

    Reviews 1 - 15 (54 Reviews Total) | Next 15

    Review Options:  Sorted by Latest Review | Sort by Best Rating


    Winter chain lube comparison.

    So I thought I would use this winter to try out several different chain lubes and give a write-up comparison here. I live in Mesa and my riding consists mostly of Red Mountain, Gold Canyon, McDowells, South Mountain and San Tan. I will be using SS, 3x10 and eventually 1x10 with One-Up conversion as ... Read More »

    ATB Chain Lube

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    Will the Airport TSA take my Chain Lube/Gear lube?

    Im flying to Asia-Nepal. Will they take my chain lube/gear lube at the airport? I never thought to see what they have available in Kathmandu, Nepal as far as lubes. Maybe I can just get some there. Anyway-will they take my lubes at the airport?Read More »

    is this lube ok for hubs

    im cleaning out my Shimano Deore (loose bearing) hubs. think this is ok to use.. [IMG]http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61kwI8taxfL._SY355SX349_SY355_CR,0,0,349,355_PIbundle-12,TopRight,0,0_SX349_SY355_CR,0,0,349,355_SH20_.jpg[/IMG]Read More »

    What lube for suspension

    I have had a Fox FloarR since 2007, and I've never serviced it - but I've never had a reason to until now. I had to replace the valve on the shock so I opened it up to clean it out and I would like to replace the lube. All the o-rings look great, so I am going to keep them. I was thinking that ... Read More »

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