JUICE LUBES RANGE OVERVIEW
KEEP YOUR RIG RUNNING SWEET THIS WINTER
Review by Robert Johnston
In many of the most popular trail locations of the world, the conditions are deteriorating as we settle down into the winter months. Keeping your bikes clean and running smoothly can seem like an arduous task but is vital to prolong their lives and minimize the chance of being left stranded on the trail. This is especially true for the UK, where Juice Lubes designs and manufactures their range of lubricants, fluids and cleaning products, with the aim of making maintenance of bikes easier. We’ll give you an overview of their range and talk about some products that Robert has particularly enjoyed during his fight to keep the test bikes running well as we descend into the darkest depths of UK Winter.
* Hit the below toggles to view the products in each section of the Juice Lubes range. *
I love riding in the wet and wild Scottish conditions, which is a relief considering my location and job of course. But the one thing I dread every time I ride is the cleanup operation that inevitably has to follow. For me, the sight of the front door is usually a sweet relief, with the promised warmth and dryness that the other side of it holds. But there’s one more hurdle to jump first – washing the bike. There’s no denying that a simple hose rinse will do a half decent job at shifting the worst of it if the ride has been saturated from start to finish, but it doesn’t tend to leave your drivetrain or paintwork in the best of ways, especially when things dry off and the extent of the mud remaining is truly revealed. Cleaning products can ease the process considerably, and I’ve enjoyed a few of the Juice Lubes products I was sent in particular. For the others, it’s still too early to tell for the most part, but nothing has stood out as being bad thus far. Here are my stand-out items so far, which have eased the cleaning process and helped to keep me out riding with bikes that feel and sound good.
Bike cleaner (with Big Softy brush)
I find it difficult to get excited about a Bike Cleaner spray, but the Juice Lubes cleaner was really quite effective when combined with their Big Softy brush. It foams up nicely, giving a good spread across the bike for less volume used, and proved to be effective at shifting both dried-on dirt and road grime from being on a towbar-mounted bike rack. It cleans well, without stripping back any glossy sheen or leading to brake squeal when it gets on the brakes. I think a big factor in this was the Big Softy brush though, which is one of the better bike brushes I’ve used – it just seems to get into places you don’t expect it to with minimal effort and doesn’t totally gunk up with dirt like some others can.
Dirty Little Scrubber and Chain Cleaner
I don’t see many people use chain cleaning devices (myself included), and I have to wonder why after using the Dirty Little Scrubber a couple of times. With very little effort you can fully strip your chain of any gunk and grime, and quickly too. It’s satisfying how clean the chain comes out after a few passes through this device, and it leaves you confident that it’s grit-free and ready for some lube after a quick rinse.
Viking Juice Chain lube
I’d taken the “all conditions” a little too literally when testing this, as the saturated sloppy trails that made up the entirety of the test time were slightly above the pay-grade of the Viking Juice. That said, it performed decently well in the utter shitfest that is UK mountain biking at this time of year, only really showing its weakness on a long and wet ride that must have contained upwards of 500 puddle splashes, where by puddle 250 things were getting a little rough, and by the end were well and truly gritty. Could their wet lube (or any lube for that matter) have done any better? I’m not sure. The fact it took me quite a few rides before I questioned the suitability of the Viking Juice for wet weather riding says a lot about its performance.
Disc Brake Cleaner
This is not a standout product – as far as I can tell, there’s nothing to separate this disc brake cleaner from other companies’ offerings. However, I’ve included it here as it’s an essential to have in the workshop, helping to keep the most important component running as best as possible.
Dirt Juice Boss In A Can
This seriously gets the job done. The powerful spray action and strong de-greaser makes this quite effective, but you’ve got to make sure you’ve got a dirt-friendly portion of the garage behind as it’ll travel a decent way and take some of the grime with it. You also have to be incredibly careful of your brakes when using this, or else you’ll be in for a bad time. But as a de-greaser for shifting tough dirt and grease, there’s no denying its effectiveness.
Frame Juice Matt Finish Detailer
I was a bit skeptical of this stuff initially, as “detailing” is a step or two above the extent I would normally go to when cleaning a bike. I tend to take more of a functional than an anal approach, and so pursuing the ultimate paint finish is not high on my list of to-dos. However, the Matt Finish Detailer had me intrigued by its claims that it’ll act as a cleaner, and it smells great, so I set about giving a matte finish helmet some love, with a satisfying clean outcome. True to claim, it’ll take plastic back to a near-new finish and seems to prevent so much dirt sticking to it after treatment.
The Wolf’s Last Word
The Juice Lubes range is extensive and has all performed well so far with little to complain about. Pricing is sensible (especially in the UK), and everything is no-nonsense with some attempts made to ease their impact on the environment. They even offer 3 for 2 for UK direct sales and at participating dealers, further boosting that value proposition.