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Indecisive Member
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Discussion Starter #1
Ok well it is that time of the week where I typically go and wash my bike and polish the chrome to make it look great for the weekend after riding through nasty road crap during the week going to and from work. A buddy of mine tried to tell me that I was doing more harm than good by washing, waxing and polishing the chrome once a week and said I should just rinse and dry it once a week and wash once a month. I don't see how I would be hurting it, but it got me thinking (probably in my own ignorance.)

So my question is how often do you wash, wax and polish your bike vs. just rinsing it off and drying it?
 

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I've never waxed or polished my bike.

Most I've done is detail spray.
Course most of my bike is powder coated instead of chrome....
 

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Go Army!
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I call :cowdung on your buddy's comment. You'll get several schools of thought here: never clean it, what you are thinking of doing or something in between the two. With paint technology, clear coat and the like, my opinion is you'll be fine with washing it. I wash my bikes regularly with absolutely no issues. Besides, I enjoy the time I spend detailing the bikes. Just be certain to use good cleaning and wax products (not dish soap), high quality micro fibers and then blow out the nooks and crannies with a warm air dryer. Some will say they use a leaf blower, but I recommend the MetroVac Blaster Sidekick Dryer (check Amazon). Now let the fun begin :know
 

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I used to wash my shovelhead with the spray on - hose off stuff. Looked great and was EZ but after a while i noticed bolts and spokes were getting surface rust. With my Heritage I plan on just using detail spray with an occasional wax. It won't see rain or water.
 

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"It won't see rain"

Easy to say in LA
 

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Flat Land Redneck
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If you use a good soap, polish and wax, I don't think you can over do it. I sometimes use spray detailer if it's not really dirty, just dusty, but use a California duster first. I feel soap and water will remove the dirt without as much chance of scratching. I like to polish and wax mine about every month or so. I also use a leaf blower to dry tight places and get most of the water off, then use an absorber to get the rest. I'm not a fan of spray on rinse off stuff. I feel it's too strong, but I could be wrong. After I clean mine, I can look at it for hours. I enjoy the zen of it. That's the way I do it. :)
 

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I wash my RKC when its dirty. I use Optimum No Rinse in a spray bottle with a good micro-fiber cloth. If there is any caked on dirt, I will rinse prior to cleaning to assure I don't create scratches with whatever is on the paint. This way I only have to break out the hose when the bike is really dirty. Your buddy recommending rinsing and drying? IDK, if your drying with a blower of some sort, maybe, but I would never dry with a microfiber drying cloth unless I felt the surface was clean and free of debris. Anything between your drying cloth and the paint surface will create scratches. Also, a good coat of wax on paint and chrome will help keep it clean longer and make it easier to clean. I use Collonite 845 wax. It lasts forever and use a few drops to do the entire bike.
 

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Any "polish" has abrasives in it. Abrasive takes off material. Decorative chrome is only millionths of an inch thick so you don't have much to polish before you are down to the nickle plating underneath.
I only use glass cleaner on my good chrome. I've ruined a lot of chrome by polishing it.
 

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I'm lazy...I rinse it off with a water hose, slap soap on it with a sponge , rise back off with the same water hose and blow dry with the leaf blower . The Housemouse will wax it...when she gets around to it ( she's lazy too ) . :)
 

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After a wash and a blow dry, I take about a 5-10 minute ride to ensure all is dry. Wax every month or so. Bugs come off much easier it seems.
 

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Indecisive Member
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Discussion Starter #12
Well I appreciate yall's input as my current routine is rinse the bike off with a hose and then a microfiber hand mitt with the armor all auto wash and wax. Then ill use a micro fiber towel to dry off all the easy places and then usually a trip down to the gas station for a mountain dew and fill up the tank for whatever my activities may be that day. I do say my bike is usually dirty during the week due to the roads I ride on and I ride in all weather I have encountered so far. My worst weather trip was from Killeen Texas down to New Braunfels / San Antonio area which was a thunderstorm the whole way down. By the end of the week my bike usually has dirt caked on a few spots... Right now there is even mud stuck on it on the fairings due to being stuck behind an Up-Armored HMMWV pulling a trailer that just came off of a tank trail in the rain...

Anyone wanna buy me a go-pro and I'll show y'all the tanks that I usually see going down the dirt roads right next to the hardball?
 

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Glad to be anywhere
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I avoid the rain on this bike. I use a spray detailer before a ride. I use carnuba wax after a wash. Those products are from Meguires.

I use S100 when its dirty, hose off then wax w carnuba.

I go to meguires site for ideas. They have always answered my questions about what and how to use to keep the new bike looking new.

Gold Class™ Carnauba Plus Paste Wax

& in between wash and waxing, Ultimate Quik Detailer®
 

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Indecisive Member
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Discussion Starter #14
Also what would be the proper way to clean the windshield? I know that using windex is a big no no, so I have just been sticking with the standard auto soap, but is there something better to use?
 

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Also what would be the proper way to clean the windshield? I know that using windex is a big no no, so I have just been sticking with the standard auto soap, but is there something better to use?
I use S100 special surfaces.

Some of the guys use Sprayaway - a non ammonia glass cleaner. I've used it with good results also.
 

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Here is a copy of correspondence I had with one of Meguires techs.

I am about to take delivery on a new Harley. Cherry red /black cherry. I don't think I need polish on new paint, but what should I use to get the super deep show bike effect. Glaze then NXT? I'm totally unfamiliar with your products. Also what to use on chrome exhaust pipes. Some say nothing but windex. ?????????? GUIDANCE PLEASE Thanks, Joe

Dear Joe,

Thank you for contacting Meguiar's. For your paint, the use of a premium carnauba wax like our Gold Class Carnauba Plus, can provide a deep, dark, wet look shine, along with a good protection. Apply a thin coat to the glossy painted areas, let it dry for about 15,20-30 minutes, and wipe off with a high quality microfiber towel like our supreme shine. A great all around metal polish for any of the polished aluminum or chrome on the bike, is Meguiar's Hot Rims Mag & Aluminum Polish. This is also good to apply with a soft foam applicator pad and remove with a microfiber towel. The metal polish should be used in small sections and be wiped off before it dries. These products can be located at the following links:

Gold Class™ Carnauba Plus Paste Wax | Meguiar's Direct
| Meguiar's Direct


I hope this information was helpful. Feel free to call me with any questions. If you would like to send us pictures of your vehicles after using Meguiar’s products, we would be happy to see them!

Regards,

Nicholas Winn
[email protected]
Surface Care Specialist – Customer Care Center
Meguiar’s Inc.
17991 Mitchell S.
Irvine, CA 92614
(800) 854-8073 *3838

Visit us on the Web!
Meguiar's : Car Care Products -Corporate Website & E-Store
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Check out Meguiar's new products for 2011 in stores now!

The NXT Tech Wax 2.0 is a full synthetic wax and does not contain any carnauba properties. For custom show cars, hot rods, or darker paints which you are trying to provide the deepest, most wet look shine, you will notice a difference when using carnauba. Our NXT Tech Wax 2.0 still creates a great high gloss shine, but its main feature is long lasting, durable protection. If you wanted to do two coats I would recommend using 2 coats of the same product.

Regards,

Nicholas Winn


Since then I have used their Gold Class Carnuba paste wax after a wash with great results. I use their (or any) spray detailer to get the dust off before a ride. Meguires (spray) does look better the next day. It looks great right after application too.

Here's a link to the S100 line which I get at my Harley dealer. It works.

http://www.s100.com/
 

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Never used water on the bike in its 15years lifespan, except for that one time we went offroading:-S Plenty of HD quick wash spraycans and Never Dull for the rims/chrome. I do use mcguiars on tank and fenders, and occasional WD40 on black powdercoat rubber/plastic Parts. Looking goooood!
 

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Washing mine is a pain in the butt. I'm on a well so the hard water really spots up if i try the conventional was job. I use a bucket to wash and a bucket to rinse and have to put water softener in the water. Real pain. In between washes I use a spray cleaner and a spray on wax. I sure like the way a harley looks when it's clean!
 

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Washing mine is a pain in the butt. I'm on a well so the hard water really spots up if i try the conventional was job. I use a bucket to wash and a bucket to rinse and have to put water softener in the water. Real pain. In between washes I use a spray cleaner and a spray on wax. I sure like the way a harley looks when it's clean!
+1
Gotta agree, the factory paint job is superb. And the wax makes it pop.
 

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Dirty Member
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Mine goes to the high pressure car wash. Mostly use it on the fairing to get bugs off but a little lighter on the rest of the bike. I try to keep from spraying high pressure on major wire harness's.
I then rinse off with spot free water and then dry with a towel.
It has worked good so far with no issues.

Does any body know a good way to keep bugs from sticking and good way to get them off? Only about half the bugs get caught in my teeth the rest stick to my fairing and fender.
 
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