GREEN OIL ECO SPRAY LUBE
The Green Oil Eco spray lube is the latest in the Brixton based brand’s range of planet friendly alternatives to petrochemical lubricants.
Compared with store branded and some might say, iconic PTFE based maintenance sprays,Green Oil Eco Spray Lube looks relatively expensive. However, I’m pleased to report its every bit as durable and a little goes a surprisingly long way, too.
PTFE (often known as Teflon), was discovered by accident in the 1930s and remains pretty ubiquitous. Not just in engineering applications either. Non-stick cooking utensils, carpets and socks being three that immediately spring to mind.
On the plus side, Teflon lubes and greases are cheap, surprisingly effective and reasonably durable. However, it’s not kind to organic/aquatic life and is widely thought to be connected to heart, thyroid and lung conditions.
Repacking hub bearings, headsets, pedals and bottom bracket threads every few months and doing so eight hours a day, 5/6 days every week for thirty years present two very different levels of risk.
So what have they replaced the chemicals with, Michael? Well, exact composition is Coca Cola secret but Simon Nash; Green Oil’s MD confirmed my suspicions. Namely that it’s the same plant based stock used in their wet chain lube. Obviously, to achieve a spray-able consistency, they’ve needed to up the (plant based) solvent.
Some folks will argue the butane/propane propellant put a dent in the eco-friendly credentials but I’m assured quantities involved present minimal impact to environment and user alike.
Given a vigorous shake for 30 seconds, or so, it emerges from the nozzle, just like a heavy-weight PTFE spray, right down to the rich yellowy good-stuff. Despite the richer than typical blend, I’ve had no problems with nozzles, or plug in straw clogging.
I’ve applied ours to the usual suspects, hinges, garage rollers, cleat, freewheel and lock-mechanisms with excellent results. Cleat release/engagement is super slick.
Like some similarly stout, petrochemical competition, it’s stocky enough, in a pinch to double as a summer chain lube. During a changeable, although predominantly dry test period, I’ve managed 220 miles and two weeks from a single helping. I have even used it to lubricate spike nipples during a wheel build.
With the interim proviso in mind, it also seems a good internal frame preserve, grease substitute on metal seatposts, quick release skewers. Deployed via the plug-in straw, it keeps cleat, bottle and carrier hardware/similarly seize-prone stuff mobile.
Thankfully, its lean enough for control cables - at least there’s been no hint of gumming up, several weeks in.
I’ve noticed a grimy patina growing as the weeks progressed. Nothing serious, on par with PTFE blends of comparable viscosity.
Surface dirt is easily dismissed, say from jockey wheels using an old, clean rag - without stripping the all-important lubricant layer.
Loosening Stubborn Parts
To a degree, it’s a useful water displacer and will assist the liberation of sticky, though not right royally seized, contact points. GT85 has an edge here (although obviously, penetrant sprays are light years ahead, when it comes to this kind of divorce.
So long as you’ve given the aerosol a really good shake, with shorter repetitions between blasts, Eco-Sprays’ waxy composition also lends itself to mothballing, say of chipped dropout paint, or electroplating on bikes entering seasonal hibernation.
That said; GT85 and another household name are what’s needed when resuscitating corroded battery contacts/switches. Muc-Off Bike Spray is a better bet for generic, post wash blow-overs.
If you’re looking for a credible alternative to heavy duty PTFE based lubricant sprays, then the eco-spray delivers.
In its present guise, “barely there”, film type maintenance sprays have a distinct advantage when it comes to flushing duties. Purging gummed up cables, chasing water from computer sensors or budget blinkies being the most obvious examples.
Even if you’re not convinced by the health and environmental benefits, Green Oil Eco Spray is a very competent light lube in its own right. Its kind to expensive, or delicate rubberised/composite components too, extending their lives and saving money in the longer run.