Pete Mooney, Vitus Pro Cycling Team's mechanic, is one of the most experienced in the peloton. Here, he provides his report on Fuchs Silkolene cleaning and maintenance products.
This is the first year we’ve used Fuchs Silkolene products for lubricating and cleaning our Vitus bikes and there is always a slight apprehension when changing to a new supplier. Those apprehensions disappeared as early the first day of the contract, however, when I visited Fuchs Silkolene headquarters in Stoke-on-Trent with Cherie Pridham, Vitus Pro Cycling Team’s owner and manager.
We were treated to a detailed tour around all areas of the plant and it soon became apparent that everyone there was committed to providing high-quality products. Two factors stood out above all others: the cleanliness of the working environment and the sheer number of products produced. We left Stoke-on-Trent secure in the knowledge that we had found a lubricant and maintenance partner with ambitions to match our own.
Back at the service course, I began the process of building our new supply of Vitus Vitesse EVO Team machines. The first Fuchs Silkolene product I used was the RG2 Grease, which proved ideal for lubricating brake and gear cables. I also used applied it to bearings before assembly.
With the bikes built, it was time to travel to Spain for our pre-season training camp. It never takes long for riders to get their bikes dirty, even in hot and dry conditions. The machinery is often returned covered in sweat and dried energy products. No matter. I’d been looking forward to the chance of putting our Fuchs Silkolene cleaning products to the test.
The first task in any bike maintenance routine is always to clean the chain and transmission components. The Brake and Chain Cleaner proved extremely effective at degreasing the drivetrain, creating a pristine base for a new application of Dry Lube.
Eager to test as many of the products as possible, I moved on to Pro Wash for the second bike into the workstand. This worked so easily that it swiftly became my ‘go to’ bike cleaner.
I then sprayed Wash Off onto the frame, brakes, wheels and other areas, before leaving for a couple of minutes to work its magic. I agitated the formula with a brush on areas of the bike where energy products had dried. Once the Wash Off had taken effect, I hosed down the bike and watched the dirt simply drop off.
After quick dry-off, it was time for lubrication. I used a Fuchs Silkolene dry lubricant for the chain and then sprayed the frame with Pro Prep. A quick polish soon restored it to its factory finish. A few days with the same routine uncovered a second advantage from using Pro Prep: dirt finds it harder to stick to the frame, making it easier to wash.
We didn’t have an opportunity to use the Wet Lube on the team bikes, either at our Spanish training camp or during England’s hot, dry summer. The Dry Lube worked well in our first race on UK soil, even in the unpleasant conditions of a British winter.
I tested the Wet Lube on my own bike, and found that it adhered to the chain without issue, even when riding through flood water up to my hubs. If you do use Wet Lube, be sure also to use the Brake and Chain Cleaner to remove it as part your maintenance routine.
The long hot summer may have prevented us from trying out Wet Lube on the chains, but it did present a further issue to tackle: tar spots on the frames. I sprayed the All-In-One Maintenance Spray on to a cloth and a quick rub soon removed the sticky deposit. Like most of Fuchs Silkolene products, it does more than it says on the tin.
After using Fuchs Silkolene products for a full season, I have been very impressed and found them to be easily the best lubricating and cleaning products we have ever used. The final bonus from Fuchs Silkolene was that they even supplied motor oil for the team’s vehicles. In accordance with the Fuchs Silkolene commitment to perfection, they supplied a different oil for each of our vehicles.