How To Apply SILCA Wax Chain Treatments

From Cleaning all the way to riding

Waxing Overview

  • Part 1: Clean and prep the chain (Two Methods)
  • Part 2: Apply the wax (Slow Cooker, Stovetop, or Drip)
  • Part 3: Maintenance

Step 1: Prepping The Chain

The Ultrasonic Method

1. Fill your tank with water and place a container submerging the chain in mineral spirits in the ultra-sonic cleaner and run a 30 minute cycle

2. Remove the chain and wipe dry with a microfiber towel, ensuring that all the residue is clean.

3. Use a balanced solvent like Chemical Guys Orange Degreaser. We mix this at a 1:6 ratio with water. Run a 30 minute cycle to degas the liquid as well as remove any last grease from the chain. (If you don't have access to Chemical Guys look for something approved for aircraft. Simple Green makes an aircraft approved degreaser, but regular Simple Green can help lead to hydrogen embrittlement.)

4. Finish off with a quick bath in a polar solvent such as denatured alcohol or acetone. This can be done in an ultrasonic, but any container will do. This is to remove any degreaser residue that may be left.

5. If the bath denatured alcohol in your jar is not left completely clear, repeat this step one or two more times until it is left clear

6. Hang the chain to dry a minimum of 15 minutes before applying wax

Gatorade Bottle Method

1. Completely cover chain inside the Gatorade bottle with mineral spirts or other non-polar solvent. Shake vigorously for at least two minutes. For best results, allow to sit overnight. (This is for new chains only, non-polar solvents will lead to rust on chains that have previously seen water)

2. In the next Gatorade bottle completely sumberge chain in a neutral, citrus based degreaser such as Chemical Guys Orange Degreaser or Simple Green Aerospace. Shake this vigorously for about 5 minutes. (When in doubt, look for a degreaser approved for aerospace use as your standard Simple Green will lead to hydrogen embrittlement.)

3. Remove the chain from the bottle, and blow compressed air into the rollers of the chain to blow solvent and debris out of the chain.

4. Repeat step number 2 in a new bottle.

5. Repeat step number 3.

6. If the bottle from step 4 is not mostly clear, continue repeating until it is mostly clear.

7. In another bottle completely submerge chain in polarized solvent like denatured alcohol or acetone and shake for 30 seconds to a minute.

8. Allow the chain to dry for at least 15 minutes before any waxing

Step 2: Waxing The Chain

The Instant Pot/Crock Pot Method

1. Heat the wax to between 65-88C (150-190F)

2. Run a bent spoke through your chain links and drop it into the melted wax.

3. Allow all the air bubbles to escape the chain and swish the chain around the pot to get the last bit of air out.

4. Aim to pull the chain out of the wax via the bent spoke as close to its hardening point as possible. This keeps as much of the wax in the chain rather than dripping out as possible.

5. Hang the chain and allow it to cool

6. Install the chain

Stovetop Method

1. Insert full bag of SILCA Secret Blend Wax into a large pot of water.

2. Bring the water to a boil and wait for the wax in the bag to completely melt.

3. Remove the bag of wax from the heat source and place it on a surface capable of handling temperatures in excess of 150f.

4. Run a bent spoke through your chain links and fully submerge the chain into the bag of melted wax.

5. Allow all of the air bubbles to escape as the air expands and leaves the inner parts of the chain.

6. When the bubbles stop, either swish the chain with the spoke, or you can gently shake the bag (be careful not to splash the hot wax) to agitate the wax into the inner most portions of the chain and drive out any remaining air bubbles.

7. Wait until the wax is reaching is hardening point and remove the spoke and chain from the wax. Waiting until this point keeps as much wax in the chain as possible.

8. Hang dry until the chain is cool enough to handle comfortably (about 15 minutes).

9. Install the chain

Drip Wax - On Bike

1. Once your chain is properly installed on the bike, shift into the largest front chainring and largest cog on the cassette to cross-chain as much as possible. This will force the chain to articulate and get the lubricant to penetrate as much as possible.

2. Add two drops per link, or a steady flow while back-pedaling.

3. Use your fingers at the bottom of the chain for two revolutions to massage the lubricant into the chain. This helps get in-between the plates.

4. Back-pedal 10-12 full revolutions

5. Allow the chain to dry for at least 12 hours, but for best results prepare the chain and allow to dry for 24 hours.

Step 3: Wax Chain Maintenance

Secret Blend Hot Melt

Super Secret Chain Lube

  • Wipe with a gear wipe or microfiber towel after any wet ride and apply one drop per link of Super Secret Chain Lube

  • Top-Up with Super Secret Chain Lube or Re-Wax after 200 miles of clean riding

  • When re-waxing the chain there is no need to go through the cleaning process again, simply wipe it free of debris, and drop it into melted wax
  • Wipe with a gear wipe or microfiber towel after any wet ride and apply 1-2 drops per link of Super Secret Chain lube

  • In clean conditions, relube after 150-200 mi

  • When reapplying Super Secret Chain Lube to a previously waxed chain, there is no need to go through the cleaning process again.