Sand

HarleyM

New Member
Region
New Zealand
I'm relatively new to ebike riding. Not so for general cycling but it's been a few years. My new ebike playground runs along the coast here in Northland, New Zealand and as such it's pretty hard to ignore the vast open space that our beach offers, irrespective of the tide. Close to that, there are dune areas that are covered with land reforming plants and tracks that support pipeline and high tension power pylon service access down the coast. I've been exploring them all and in the process have discovered the effects of sand on my ebike's chain and drive system. My bike is a large Specialized 29er Bafang mid drive conversion. The chain is open to the environment and I can testify to what happens when powdery dry sand hits an oily chain. It's not nice! If you've ever prepared schnitzel with egg and bread crumbs you'll understand the analogy. The chain links stiffened and the chain eventually broke a weak link that I had unintentionally left for such an occurrence. It was a long walk home dispute fixing the chain twice with a chain link tool. Both times succumbing to the same outcome. So some lessons to pass on....
Dry lube chain for Sandy environments.
Keep sand away from the chain at all costs.
Maintain and clean chain frequently, wash down after riding and flush with degreaser and reapply dry lube frequently.
Consider protection/deflection with mudguards and some sort of chain cover if possible. The front wheel is perfectly placed to flick up sand directly into the chain ring.
Don't use a chain that has been made longer by re-attaching links with a chain link tool. The links are never the same. They may appear good, but never be trusted for use under stress.
Also think about carrying a spare chain, cut to correct length and quick links ready to go.
On the topic of protection/deflection, I'm still trying to come up with the best solution. I've seen plans for 3D printed brackets held to the Bafang motor case and the frame but no commercial solution yet. I'd be interested in hearing any other ideas.
Be safe out there and enjoy!
 

reed scott

Well-Known Member
I'm relatively new to ebike riding. Not so for general cycling but it's been a few years. My new ebike playground runs along the coast here in Northland, New Zealand and as such it's pretty hard to ignore the vast open space that our beach offers, irrespective of the tide. Close to that, there are dune areas that are covered with land reforming plants and tracks that support pipeline and high tension power pylon service access down the coast. I've been exploring them all and in the process have discovered the effects of sand on my ebike's chain and drive system. My bike is a large Specialized 29er Bafang mid drive conversion. The chain is open to the environment and I can testify to what happens when powdery dry sand hits an oily chain. It's not nice! If you've ever prepared schnitzel with egg and bread crumbs you'll understand the analogy. The chain links stiffened and the chain eventually broke a weak link that I had unintentionally left for such an occurrence. It was a long walk home dispute fixing the chain twice with a chain link tool. Both times succumbing to the same outcome. So some lessons to pass on....
Dry lube chain for Sandy environments.
Keep sand away from the chain at all costs.
Maintain and clean chain frequently, wash down after riding and flush with degreaser and reapply dry lube frequently.
Consider protection/deflection with mudguards and some sort of chain cover if possible. The front wheel is perfectly placed to flick up sand directly into the chain ring.
Don't use a chain that has been made longer by re-attaching links with a chain link tool. The links are never the same. They may appear good, but never be trusted for use under stress.
Also think about carrying a spare chain, cut to correct length and quick links ready to go.
On the topic of protection/deflection, I'm still trying to come up with the best solution. I've seen plans for 3D printed brackets held to the Bafang motor case and the frame but no commercial solution yet. I'd be interested in hearing any other ideas.
Be safe out there and enjoy!
Yeah there's sand and then there's sand. Just look at some of the bike parts closeups chargeride puts up in his pics. :eek: One would be tempted to ride in that nice hard packed sand close to the surf. But then you get salt water everywhere. Na. I don't think so.😖