CRANKALICIOUS KWIPE GUMCHAINED CHAIN CLEANER SACHET
15ml (11g) 85p each
The Crankalicious Kwipe Gumchained Remedy Chain Cleaner Sachet is, as the name suggests, a pocket sized, disposable wipe impregnated with solvent and designed for cleaning chains/transmissions. They can be bought individually, as a pack of 5, or a box of 20.
Crankalicious's Kwipe Gumchained Remedy Chain Cleaners (hereafter referred to as Kwipes) are intended for roadside rescues on big tours/endurance rides, so stick with your favourite solvent tipple round the workshop. That said, I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how effectively they’ve stripped every kind of lube on our workshop shelf.
Rip open the sealed foil sachet and you’ll find a thick, salmon pink gauze type mesh wipe. This is generously impregnated with a petrochemical based solvent cleaner known as “Gumchained remedy”. Yep, that was as candid as Crankalicious would get - aside from telling me they brew everything from scratch at their Essex HQ.
I’d be inclined to pack a set of latex type examination gloves and a re-sealable bag in with your kit. Aside from the usual precautions (avoiding contact with eyes, waterways and broken skin) the solvent is very strong and has left my hands feeling quite raw.
Otherwise, these really couldn’t be simpler to use - provided you’re not wearing full-finger winter weight gloves. Tear of the top, pull out the wipe and wrap it around your chain, while turning the cranks backwards. Give derailleur jockey wheels, cages and cassette a quick cat-lick, as you’re there.
Crankalicious suggests rubbing the chain with a clean rag afterward, to remove any residual solvent/gunk. Even when the mercury has struggled into single figures, I’ve not felt the need - it certainly hasn’t diluted fresh chain lubes-that includes super runny “dry” blends, let alone gloopy winter blends, such as Nasty Lube Siberian chain lube and Weldtite TF2 Extreme Wet
I’ve more or less cruised through a box of 20 these past few months and am pleased to report they’ve cut through most combinations of lube and ingrained grot with ruthless, piranha-esque efficiency.
Thankfully, the perforated fibres are refreshingly durable, so haven’t disintegrated when I’ve been stripping stocky wet/ceramic types.
TF2 extreme wet, Rock 'n’ Roll Absolute Dry, the Nasty Lube Siberian and Muc-Off Hydrodynamic Chain Lube (among others) have demanded a more intensive purging. The matted fibres also trap lube and dirt very effectively, largely eliminating cross-contamination woes.
A single Kwipe has got two chains, cassette and jockey wheels primed, ready for fresh lube before becoming bin-fodder. Yes, we are talking wet and one was fed 10w/40 motor oil. This cuts costs to just over 40p a hit - useful if you’re riding as a group.
Like most convenience goodies, there’s some trade-off price-wise. 85p a pop, 5 for £4, or if you wanted to take the industrial route £15 for 20. Critics would point out that decorators wipes will do much the same thing and considerably cheaper.
Another school of thought (one I happen to subscribe to) advocates decanting a small quantity of turpentine/similar solvent into an old screw top (50ml hand-gel type) bottle, along with some clean rag and your lube of choice. Not everyone plans ahead and we can’t prepare for every eventuality.
Bottom line, they lived up to their hype - will tackle pretty much any lube and embedded grot you care to mention. Occasional endurance riders -their intended audience - will probably warm fastest to their speedy, disposable charms.