SEVEN DAY CYCLIST
CYCLING, BUT NOT USUALLY RACING
LATEST UPDATE: MAY 30th
NAKED BIKES BIKE BLING
Naked Bikes Bike Bling is described as "A tuxedo for your bike". Until recently, riders needed to choose matt/gloss specific products (often both), which can prove quite pricey. Thankfully, Bike Bling does exactly what it promises and to a decent, durable standard.
Pros: Convenient, effective detailer with lasting results.
Cons: Silicone component though small attracts more dirt than waxes.
Bike Bling is described as a non-sticky detailer product, which as I expected, contains silicone dioxide. Silicones are great for nourishing plastics and rubberised components. Elastomer suspension bushes, suspension seals, track pumps being prime examples. They're also very good masking agents for plated and polished surfaces. However, compared with wax type products, they can't hide minor swirling and similar blemishes.
There's a tipping point too, where heavier silicone components can seduce dirt. Traditional blends, including Muc-Off Silicone Shine can also leave a temporarily glossy effect, on matt/satin finishes. Not what you want on your stealth black TT missile. Talking of which, some (matt finishes in particular) aren't lacquered.
So, for optimal results, Naked Bikes recommend their Bike Frame Coating Sealant. In common with Pro Green MX, Bike Bling comes in a liquid form, which avoids wastage, since you're getting the whole product, not propellant.
Bikes should be given a sudsy bucket wash and rinse first
and that's good practice.
However, though I wouldn't dream of applying it straight to this grotty mix of road spatter and leaked frame preserve, light, filmy stuff doesn't require the wash, rinse and dry, first.
Give the Bike Bling a good 3 second shake to mix the contents, then apply to the bike, avoiding contact points, and using a clean, dry cloth. Given all we're told about keeping these products away from rims and braking surfaces, I was slightly surprised to learn Naked Bikes recommend contact: good for pad cleaning, apparently.
Once you've delivered it to the bike's surfaces, leave 30 seconds curing time, then buff with a micro-fibre cloth. They also recommend using different cloths for frame set and transmission components, which is good practice, since it avoids cross contamination.
Results have been consistently good across the board. on matt, satin and gloss finishes.
Powder coated, 2K, stove enamels, anodising and even raw titanium all sported a uniformly showroom look, with nominal effort. I'd still recommend trying a small area, first. However, trace amounts applied to mudguards, track pumps and helmets delivered similarly pleasing results.
It will be interesting to see how it stands up to the wetter months, and I've treated a couple of framesets to Crankalicious Enduro Frame Sealant Spray
A mix of heatwave and sudden, torrential downpours suggests Naked Bikes have the silicone component about right. Surfaces that weren't treated to a sealant coating afterward and sporting faintly grimy patinas-and I do mean patina, not gunk.
On balance, sans sealant product, this has been less apparent than bikes treated with Pro Green MX Aftershine 101. Patina is easily wiped away, with a clean, dry cloth, and a tangible layer of product remains.
Durability/Staying Prowess 3.5/5
A month, or so down the line and my Holdsworth and Fixed Gear Winter trainer are on their second helping. This was due to two, unexpectedly wet rides. Rides that demanded a sudsy bucket cleansing afterward and I'd forgone a sealant product. Otherwise, the protective barrier, forces rain, spray and other wet stuff to bead up, then roll away, without trace.
True to claims, modest amounts on rims and rotors hasn't resulted in any nasty surprises. Mind you, I've been quick to test brakes, engaging them to burn away any residual, before heading out on public roads! The same goes for modest amounts that infiltrated saddles, tape and levers.
The latter, pump handles, and similar haven't felt sticky, either.
A penny shy of a tenner is competitive with the M16 Podium Stage System. However, as Naked Bikes would justly point out, unlike cheaper products, Bike Bling caters for gloss, matt and satin effects. If you didn't require matt compatibility, Pro Green MX Aftershine MX 101 can be had for £10.99 (1litre) or £29.99 for 5 litres. Though the Aftershine MX101 still requires bikes are washed and rinsed first, it can be applied to a damp bike and cures to a glossy state-no buffing required.
Perfect for post wash preservation of scuzzy cross, gravel and mountain bikes during winter. At the other extreme, combining a decent quality furniture polish with a sealant product, could be the most cost effective, lasting solution for riders with gloss and satin bikes, helmets etc.
There's no doubt the Naked Bikes Bike Bling is a capable detailer, offering good, seemingly lasting results. Though these aren't light years ahead of some longstanding favourites. I'd recommend it over them, if your bikes have matt, gloss and satin finishes. That said, there are cheaper, possibly more convenient choices.
Verdict: 3.75/5 Decent all-finishes detailer with lasting results.
PUBLISHED NOVEMBER 2019
BUILDER OF STEEL CYCLE FRAMES
Ryton On Dunsmore
Coventry CV8 3FH