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Is "bar chain" oil harmful to my drivetrain?(7 posts)

Is "bar chain" oil harmful to my drivetrain?eyebob
Jun 9, 2003 7:21 AM
I was out on a ride yesterday and I'd forgotten to lube up the chain after I had cleaned it recently. It was squeeking horribly so I stopped by a guy's house and all he had was chainsaw "bar oil" to use. I figured that this would be better (do less harm) than continued riding on an unlubed chain. Any thoughts? Should I clean it all off and re-lube?

re: Is "bar chain" oil harmful to my drivetrain?TJeanloz
Jun 9, 2003 7:55 AM
It isn't the best, but it probably is better than nothing. I would, however, clean it and re-lube. The bar oil is likely to attract a lot of grit over the miles, which will contribute to faster wear. But for a quick-fix, it ought to do the job.
Probably just 30W motor oil rebadged asOldEdScott
Jun 9, 2003 8:48 AM
bar lube. I'm sure it didn't hurt anything, but it might get a little gunky if you leave it on.
any real or synthetic oil is fine.LC
Jun 9, 2003 9:27 AM
If fact i use a pretty heavy oil in the rain on purpose.
Jun 9, 2003 9:46 AM
Bar and chain oil is strikingly similar to Phil Wood Tenacious Oil, which is pretty good stuff for wet rides. Being an oil, it does pick up more grit and grime than a dry lube, but it's nothing a soapy sponge and a water rinse won't fix.
When your chain is squeaking, anything is better than going on that way. Even water, believe it or not. Yes, you want to clean and lube that chain ASAP, but water will quiet the chain and add some lubrication.
Probably OK for the day ...Humma Hah
Jun 9, 2003 11:05 AM
... Bar chain oil is particularly "stringy" (unlike motor oil, it will leave long filaments behind when it drips or you touch it and pull away). It is thicker than motor oil, clings well to chains moving at high speed, but would be very messy and rob some energy.

You did no harm to the chain ... bar oil is much better than running dry. But I'd clean it off and relube now, just to prevent grimy mess and little streaks of oil on my expensive shoes.
Thanks all. (nm)eyebob
Jun 9, 2003 12:21 PM