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Discussion Starter #1
I've owned my bike now for 7 weeks, and all the free time I have I spend riding . Now, I have 7 weeks of dirt, grime, and bugs all over my bike, and I can't seem to find a motorcycle wash .

I live outside NE Philly, but I commute to Baltimore and back once a week. I'm willing to travel a little for a good cleaning.

***On a side note*** Why haven't any dealers put up signs at the local high schools/colleges, that they will train young ladies to detail motorcycles? Then you have said ladies set up canopies at local diners, bars, etc... Wear the shirt of the dealer that trained them, and even use cleaning supplies available for purchase at said shop.

Think about the win-win-win situation here... Dealership/shop gets free advertisement. Restaruant, bar, diner, etc, gets extra customers grabbing breakfast, lunch, dinner, drinks while having their bikes washed. We don't need to waste our time washing our bikes, and high school/college girls make money hanging out in the sun.

How do we get this to happen?
 

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One problem I see right off the bat is that you drive in the canopy and your bike is super hot. Pretty hard to detail a hot bike, at least it is for me.

Here's an auto wash for a bike. :)

 

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Another problem I see is the bike will either have to cool down first or the water used to wash will have to be hot. Cold water on a hot engine is a NO NO! Besides, why not use a hand-wash stall at a car wash? Many are getting card readers to ease convenience.

EDIT: After watching the video, I'll stick to hand washing my bike.
 

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You know, when I am on the road with a crazy dirty, bug riddled bike I will use a hand-wash bay at any car wash. I always travel with a waffle weave drying towel and can dry the main portions of the bike. First round is a quick rinse, then pre-soak, then soap, then rinse, then spot free rinse.

I know high pressure is not good for bikes but I stand back a bit so as to help alleviate the concentrated pressure. No problems in the few times I have used car washes.

It is best if the bike can cool a bit but let's be realistic, it does rain cold water too. The initial wetting/rinse I gently get more and more water on the hot parts. Have never had trouble with cold water on a hot bike.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I get what you're all saying about "detailing when hot" or "washing when hot", but I'm all for paying a college girl to sponge wash the dirt & bugs off my forks, headlight, radiator guard, and crash bar while I grab a bite & a beer. I guess it's different for the high chrome bikes, but my little blacked out 900 doesn't require a detail & shine.

I agree that you shouldn't go through a high school cheerleader car wash. That's why I'm suggesting that these girls are trained by local shops on how to (and how NOT to) wash a motorcycle. Hence, the girl advertising the shop that trained her.

I, for one, would be more likely to go to a diner for breakfast/lunch, that had a wash girl, prior to, or after a ride. Make it a meeting point to meet up with other riders to start/end a ride. I guess I'd just rather be out riding & hanging out, then sitting at home in my driveway washing my bike.
 

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It would be neat if the wash/rinse pressure could be dialed down a bit.
I still prefer hand washing mine, but on a long trip.....
 

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I'm surprised there aren't more opinions/posts regarding the bike wash video. It raises the hair on the back of my head to watch that. Hot engine, cold engine, doesn't matter, I wouldn't put any bike through that high pressure water bath. Sure, I suppose it dries the parts you can see but what about all those nooks and crannies and electrical connectors that are being force fed. No thanks.

But the bike wash arrangement the OP mentions and proposes seems logical if the "hot engine" issue is addressed. I've washed my bike right after a ride more than once. Just have to be a bit careful.
 

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We don't need to waste our time washing our bikes
You hit the nail on the head right there. Why waste time washing your bike when it won't improve its performance or reliability a bit? I can certainly spare a few minutes once a year or so for a hose-down -- less frequently than that if I happen to get caught in a rainstorm.

I know this sentiment is not common among cruiser riders, but my main ride is the Wee-Strom and owners of that type of "adventure tourer" bike consider washing it to be the moral equivalent of adding fuzzy dice and foxtail streamers to dress it up. If your bike ain't filthy and bug-encrusted you ain't riding it often enough or far enough. Except for the chain, which must be spotless.:D
 

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You hit the nail on the head right there. Why waste time washing your bike when it won't improve its performance or reliability a bit? I can certainly spare a few minutes once a year or so for a hose-down -- less frequently than that if I happen to get caught in a rainstorm.

I know this sentiment is not common among cruiser riders, but my main ride is the Wee-Strom and owners of that type of "adventure tourer" bike consider washing it to be the moral equivalent of adding fuzzy dice and foxtail streamers to dress it up. If your bike ain't filthy and bug-encrusted you ain't riding it often enough or far enough. Except for the chain, which must be spotless.:D

Its possible hand washing can improve reliability, by finding loose bolts or brackets that you would otherwise miss on a quick look over before hopping on for a ride. It also makes it easier to spot small leaks before they become large leaks 300 miles from home.
 

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Its possible hand washing can improve reliability, by finding loose bolts or brackets that you would otherwise miss on a quick look over before hopping on for a ride. It also makes it easier to spot small leaks before they become large leaks 300 miles from home.
Yep, you get to know your bike pretty well while you're washing the bugs & road grime off.

I don't think anyone prefers to wash over riding; and I can see why it's not common on a bike that's regularly used off road.

But; if an hour, five or six times a year is a great loss of riding time; you don't have enough riding time anyway. :)

Scott
 

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Apparently my attempt at satire went amiss. I was trying to gently yank the chain of cruiser riders by making fun of them as persons obsessed by the appearance of their chromed-out "butt jewelry" motorcycles.

One of my Harley-riding buddies cheerfully refers to himself as a "chrome whore." In return I ask him to park in the shade so his bike's sunlight reflections don't damage my eyes.:D
 

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Apparently my attempt at satire went amiss. I was trying to gently yank the chain of cruiser riders by making fun of them as persons obsessed by the appearance of their chromed-out "butt jewelry" motorcycles.

One of my Harley-riding buddies cheerfully refers to himself as a "chrome whore." In return I ask him to park in the shade so his bike's sunlight reflections don't damage my eyes.:D
I picked up on the humor in a couple of places and I sure din't think you were trying to be a jerk.

But, I have heard the "you're not a real biker" nonsense about having a clean bike.
I think stereo-types like that can do with a little refuting from time to time.:)

If I lived where having a dual purpose or adventure bike made sense; I would probably just hit the front with a garden hose to keep the bug guts from corroding things and move on.


A note about a ride in bike wash. A couple of industrial fans with a light misting fan would cool it enough to wash in about 10 min.
I always assumed that's how they did it at Rally bike washes.

Scott
 

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I'm gonna throw a wrench in your oatmeal right quick.

Dealers and shops do NOT know how to detail cars. They know how to take a rag to a car and make it look clean and not put deep scratches in it. But detailing nerds like myself have a phrase for what a car looks like when it's been detailed by a dealer, "DISO". Dealer Installed Swirl Option. Lots of fine scratches, marrings, and swirls from cheap crappy products, dirty tools and poor washing techniques. Not to mention lots of other detailing cardinal sins like wearing belts, having things in their pockets, etc. etc. (imagine all that stuff rubbing across your paint as they lean over it).

In my not so humble opinion, do some research on the "2 bucket wash method", and get yourself the related supplies and wash the bike yourself. Get yourself some good, quality microfiber towels and a good quick detail spray and use that to get the dust off when she doesn't need a bath.

Oh, and please don't be one of those guys who thinks his bike is allergic to water so he perilously damages the paint using spray stuff when it's far too dirty for that. When there's dirt on the bike, you need plenty of lubrication to prevent the dirt from scraping across the paint and putting those fine scratches that, over time, accumulate and dull the paint (even if the scratches themselves aren't exceptionally visible). Good, quality car wash soap and water, and a clean wash mitt (which is why the two bucket method is important) will get it clean. Spray stuff (quick detail spray, pledge if that's your thing, etc.) is only acceptable for a very fine layer of dust.

Okay, there's my "detail it right" lecture for today. If you want your cars/bikes to look excellent, you've got to wash them the right way.
 

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I hand wash, then I take out my leaf blower(160mph wind) then blow as much water off to keep it from spotting. Then I take a cotton diaper and give it a good shine. It all takes about 4 beers.
 

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The few times mine has gotten dirty, I use the tears generated from my weeping to gently clean it.

Then I do a full wax job and polish all the chrome.
 

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Then I do a full wax job and polish all the chrome.

Sometimes I wax and polish the chrome, even though it's not dirty.. and the sad part is..THAT part is true

but..I like doing that. It's kind of like therapy; nobody else in the garage, tunes a thumping, drinks a drinking, and happily cleaning the bike.
 
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