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 Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine

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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeThu Apr 09, 2009 5:55 pm

My Harley is mostly metal and chrome and I have various products I use to clean it. I also don't worry about washing it down with the hose to rinse it off.

However, I am a bit concerned about washing my Silverwing. What do you all use to clean the various areas; the painted parts, black part in the center, and especially the "dashboard". I worry that using a hose to rinse off the "dashboard" would be like turning the hose on inside my car.

Any suggestions are much appreciated.
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PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeThu Apr 09, 2009 9:25 pm

I'm terrible since I use Windex almost all the time to clean my bike. I clean the dash with it also and then put wax on the dash to keep it soft and protected. I don't ride in bad weather and only rarely get caught in the rain. I always keep my bike in the garage. I use paper towels and they don't seem to scratch. On the wheels I just use a cleaner that is for grease.
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DickO
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeThu Apr 09, 2009 10:07 pm

Makes me wonder though... it hasn't happened to me yet but what does one do when caught in the rain? Let's just say you can't avoid a big downpour and there ain't no cover to head for. Assuming you had the foresight to already have rain gear on, what happens to the SWing??? Is the dash instrumentation in danger from such a situation?

PS... When I do wash my SWing, I use a wash/wax solution in a bucket and the good ol' garden hose and wipe off as soon as possible.

(Sorry 'bout that! Didn't mean to steal a thread!)


Last edited by DickO on Thu Apr 09, 2009 10:11 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Almost stole a thread.)
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Bernardo
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PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeThu Apr 09, 2009 11:36 pm

In my experience of bad and wet weather, as with a touring bike everything gets wet in a downpour.... However as long as you keep moving at least 40mph, the S'wing does a great job of keeping off most of the rain... You will get wet, but not soaked as you would on a bike. I found this out on the very first day I picked my scoot up, riding through London which don't know very well.

As for the dashboard, don't forget there's an air vent to allow air either side of the screen, plus some water gets around the side of the screen, so the Dash does get wet aswell....

I clean the scoot as I do my bike and car, that is to say , not too often, but I use a brush, sponge, bucket and water, car shampoo/wax then hose down, but gently. First time I hosed the scoot down, it wouldn't start until it had dryed off an hour later, but since then its had quite a bit of work done, and been serviced... No problems starting since, but I am careful with the hose over the dashboard, just a quick spray.

I do not use a pressure washer!
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The Scootist
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PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri Apr 10, 2009 12:44 pm

Do you mean you are supposed to wash your bike? (wink)

I pretty much ride every day (as long as the roads aren't icy), so I regularly get all sorts of road slime on my bike. I try to wipe it down every time I fill up with gas. I use a soft towel and usually wet it in the windshield washer cleaner at the gas station (as long as the fluid isn't totally grungy). Then I gently wipe off the windshield and body plastic. A couple of time each year I try to put a good coat of car wax on the body plastic and I wipe down the dash and seat with Armor-all. So far it seems to work OK. Maybe it is a crime, but when you ride as often as I do in all sorts of conditions and constantly get bugs splattered on the front, I sort of get used to my bike not looking absolutely pristine all of the time. My bad.
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joncallihan
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri Apr 10, 2009 4:31 pm

Hint: DON'T armor-all both the seat and your leather pants.
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri Apr 10, 2009 8:50 pm

I wouldn't use windex on the winshield!
It can soften the plastic or something....so I've read and it get foggy-looking...kind of....
Hydrogen Peroxide works great,or plexus....
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PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri Apr 10, 2009 9:00 pm

RobinC wrote:
My Harley is mostly metal and chrome and I have various products I use to clean it.

So there are two people in the world that have a silver wing and harley?

I also have a Harley, a Heritage classic. It takes me about 4 to 6 relaxing theriputic hours to clean and polish my harley. My swing just takes about half and hour at the most. I use lemon pledge on my windshield as Clearview recomends. I use windex on the tupper ware and then use lemon pledge to protect it. It looks good after 4 years and 25, 000 miles.
Paul
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri Apr 10, 2009 9:05 pm

I just take mine to a car wash a lot of the times and it does a great job. I don't spray the console too hard with the pressure washer but so far it hasn't done any harm. I wipe it down then after.
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri Apr 10, 2009 9:09 pm

Hi Paul,

Well....your almost right, there are 3 of us here. affraid

DennisB

2008 Honda SilverWing
1959 FLH Harley-Davidson Panhead - For Sale - SOLD! cheers


Last edited by DennisB on Sat Apr 11, 2009 7:49 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Haskell
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri Apr 10, 2009 10:21 pm

Make that four of us. I have a 1999 Ultra Classic and an 02 SilverWing.
The SilverWing IS much easier to clean.
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jdeereanton
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeSat Apr 11, 2009 6:31 am

I'm on record (check some previous posts) - I don't clean our SilverWings very often.

It's not that I don't enjoy them when they are sparkling. It's not that it is difficult to clean them. I just really don't place a priority on having them spotless. If the weather is nice enough to clean them - it's nice enough to ride them. I don't get enough chances to ride so...

Although, I am fastidious when I do take the time to clean them.

I use some car wash concentrate in a 5-gallon bucket and fill the bucket with water. I put a spray nozzle on my hose connected to the house spigot and spray the complete bike (dash - seat - radiator - under fenders). I ride in the rain too...

I wash from the top down in sections (wheels and tires last) using a sponge and a soft rag. I use the same washing stuff on the windscreen as on the body. I rinse in between sections so that the soap doesn't sit and dry on the surface. I have a spoke brush and some other soft bristle brushes that I use on the brake calipers and wheel surfaces. I scrub the sidewalls of the tires with a little stiffer brush.

I rinse the bike fully and completely several times. For drying I use a leaf blower to remove the majority (almost all) of the water. It is very efficient and I do not have to do very much wiping afterward. It especially gets water out of recesses and cap screw heads

I use the Honda (not Honda anymore) spray shine product on the plastic and if really motivated I'll use Plexus on the windshield. I have used Armor-All or similar product on the black plastic and have used the Honda spray on the black plastic.

We generally always clean the windscreen before heading out for a ride using Windex and an old bath towel.

When we are on the road (touring) - We use Windex wipes / water and a towel on the windscreen and don't worry too much about any of the road grime.

I don't really worry too much about the molecular and sub-atomic damage being done to the valance bond sites of styrene and polycarbonite plastics (if any) due to use of a particular product. It's a machine - not a child. If something breaks or degrades, we'll replace it - we have no emotional attachment to a machine.
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jdeereanton
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeSat Apr 11, 2009 6:43 am

RobinC wrote:
I worry that using a hose to rinse off the "dashboard" would be like turning the hose on inside my car.

Robin,

Remember that the dash in your car is like the dash on your SilverWing in that it provides feedback and information. But, unlike the dash of your SilverWing the dash in your car was designed to be protected from the elements.

The dash of your SilverWing was designed for a machine that is likely to be exposed to the elements. And so water is less of an issue on the dash of the SilverWing. Under the tupperware you'll find that the connectors are designed to be water intrusion resistant. The guage unit is a sealed unit.

I don't think that low pressure water hoses sprayed in small amounts are a severe risk.

In the Army we used low pressure water hoses to clean the outer optic windows of the thermal sight units. Not high pressure because it could crack the protective lenses. The thermal sights were much more sensitive than the SilverWing dash, more expensive too.
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honda_silver
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeSat Apr 11, 2009 1:32 pm

jdeereanton wrote:
It's not that I don't enjoy them when they are sparkling. It's not that it is difficult to clean them. I just really don't place a priority on having them spotless. If the weather is nice enough to clean them - it's nice enough to ride them. I don't get enough chances to ride so...

Although, I am fastidious when I do take the time to clean them.

Sounds exactly like mine.

jdeereanton wrote:
I use some car wash concentrate in a 5-gallon bucket and fill the bucket with water. I put a spray nozzle on my hose connected to the house spigot and spray the complete bike (dash - seat - radiator - under fenders). I ride in the rain too...

I do not use a nozzle to prevent pressured spray from going where I don't want to.

jdeereanton wrote:
I wash from the top down in
sections (wheels and tires last) using a sponge and a soft rag. I use
the same washing stuff on the windscreen as on the body. I rinse in
between sections so that the soap doesn't sit and dry on the surface. I
have a spoke brush and some other soft bristle brushes that I use on
the brake calipers and wheel surfaces. I scrub the sidewalls of the
tires with a little stiffer brush.

I do the windshield first, because I have a clean rag or sponge so I am less likely to scratch the windshield.

I will have to get a spoke brush ... it would make it easier.

So it sounds like we are very close in our styles ... when can you come over so I can watch you clean my SWing. :lol!:
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jdeereanton
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeSat Apr 11, 2009 9:53 pm

Bill,

Good one. :ROTF: Probably not going to happen though. I'm going to have to get out to Georgetown someday.
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transam86
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeThu May 14, 2009 4:48 pm

I use my turtle wax platinum wax every few weeks but inbetween I use PIG SNOT :-) Awesome stuff espcially on my givi shield
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeThu May 14, 2009 8:16 pm

Well, haven't cleaned this ride yet, but on my other bikes I've often used the Honda spray cleaner stuff (it even works on BMW's). I'd be leery of the Armorall. It made a dust magnet out of the dash in my Olds. I remember reading on another forum NEVER to use it on Leatherlyke bags, which it apparently can turn an ugly shade of gray. We don't use terrycloth towels on our bikes either. Son works at an auto parts store so gets lots of "manager's returns" that customers bring back for refunds. They can't be restocked, so the staff get to buy them for pennies on the dollar. I think we have a six inch high stack of microfiber cleaning cloths out in the garage.
Guess what we use to dry them off? The lawn blower. Works like a charm.
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PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeThu May 14, 2009 9:35 pm

I just use good old Windex and a paper towel. I use good paper towels so they are soft and don't stratch. I do wash my windshield every time I go out. I have used the Honda products also. Plus I keep my bike in the garage all the time...
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PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri May 15, 2009 7:13 am

my brother one word MICROFIBER CLOTH ok well 2 words :-)
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PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri May 15, 2009 6:25 pm

Wash it like you would a car, I'd say. Keep the high pressure spray away, though. Sponge off the paintwork with carwash soap in a bucket of water. Rinse gently. Just wipe off the "dash" with a damp cloth.

The plexiglas is the only part I'd really worry about. It scratches fairly easily. Go with a cloth intended for that purpose. Or make sure you use a 100% cotton cloth. Bear in mind that sometimes a "100% cotton" washcloth will have synthetic threat around the edges. That can and will scratch plexiglas.

Motorcycle shops will have cloths and spray cleaner for the windscreen, obviously. You can also get that sort of stuff from any online pilots shop. You can also try Griot's Garage online for the "best of the best" cleaning and waxing doo-dads.

I don't recommend Armor-All. Seems like that just makes everything gooey and slippery. I'm not sure what's best for a vinyl motorcycle seat. Maybe just a damp cloth, then wax it with the same carnuba wax you'd use on the paint? I don't know. It probably can't hurt.
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DennisB
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeFri May 15, 2009 7:51 pm

Right on Mickey,

Stay away from presure washers. They will send any scooter or motorcycle to an early grave.

Motorcycle, scooter windshields and helmet screens are made of Lexan these days and require special cleaners/polishs so they will stay clear and scratch free.

DennisB
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matthew
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Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine Empty
PostSubject: Re: Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine   Cleaning my lean, mean, commuting machine I_icon_minitimeSun May 24, 2009 7:57 pm

I live down a dirt road, and in a pretty windy part of the country-at times, anyway- to boot, plus, I leave my swing outdoors under a Bike Barn storage unit. That means that even when covered completely, if there's wind, the bike gets covered with dust. Here's the cleaning method I've developed so far:

rinse the bike with a damp cotton cloth the get the surface dust and dirt off, then wipe down the whole thing - except the windshield - with 4 Peaks Protectant wipes (I've tried Armorall wipes and I don't like them). That's it.
It work great, adds a little protectant layer of whatever chemical to the plastic. Also works really nicely to restore the seat vinyl if it's become faded for any reason.

No need for brushes or buckets or soaps or fluids, etc.

For the windshield I usually wipe it down with another damp cloth, and then, dry it off with a soft micro fiber cloth. I'll have to try the windex sometime. Seems simple enough.

I'm into clean enough, but not compulsively clean, and simple. Real simple.
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