Lilly Lube: Quick Review by Uncle Dudley
Editor’s Note: Well, it has been a loooong time since we’ve heard from our contributor, Uncle Dudley. 2016 to be exact. But, he is still kickin’ and ridin’ down in Kansas and recently he reached out to me with the following review of Lilly Lube. Thanks for reading!
Let’s talk about lube. Specifically the kind that goes on our bicycle chains. There are so many choices. Which type of lube for dry conditions, for wet conditions. Dry lube. Wet lube. Wax?
A few years back, I hit up my shop mechanic, Jeremy Hutsell, for his thoughts on which lube to try. Jeremy handed me a bottle of Lilly Lube. He knows what I need, so I didn’t ask questions. I purchased Lilly Lube and haven’t looked back. It just works.
Now early on, I applied it like I normally would before a ride. I thought it worked great. When the Maisie’s Cycling Team was looking for sponsors, Jeremy started the ball rolling. I telephoned the inventor of this formula, Jason Lilly. After introductions, he asked me how I was applying his lube to my chain. Guess what? I had been doing it completely wrong!
Mr. Lilly, essentially a mad scientist, had lived in Kansas during his college years. He had studied drilling and the lubricants used for drilling. These lubricants were the inspiration for Lilly Lube. Instructions for applying Lilly Lube are right on the bottle. So…
So what is different about the application process is that Lilly Lube should be applied at least 8 hours before you ride. During this waiting period, the solvents in the lube help clean the chain. Meanwhile the lubricants bond to the metal of the chain. Before you ride, wipe that chain with a clean microfiber cloth. Then you are ready to roll.
What’s remarkable about Lilly Lube, is how long it will last between applications. Plus it doesn’t seem to hang onto a lot of dust. Of course time between applications depends on how much you ride and the conditions you ride in. Last weekend I rode The Fiddy at Solstice Gravel Grinder. The race was delayed due to the deluge. It poured down rain for a good half hour or more. I watched other riders hiding under the Lauf tent, lubing their wet chains. My bike had been left in the rain the entire time. Of course Lilly Lube didn’t let me down. My chain was just as quiet and worked flawlessly for 55 miles. That is the performance I’ve come to expect from Lilly Lube. Yet it still impresses me.
So how long can I go without re-applying Lilly Lube? Well I had sort of gotten out of cycling for a spell. I had last applied Lilly Lube to my Lauf True Grit chain for Rock Ridge Gravel Grinder, last July. My poor Lauf sat in my shop until around May this year. When I finally hopped back on my bike, it rode like it should. The chain was quiet and shifted perfectly.
So that’s my experience with Lilly Lube in a nutshell. It just plain works. It works for a long, long time. That Jeremy Hutsell guy became Jeremy from Lauf Cycling. Jeremy told me he still uses Lilly Lube. Made in the U.S.A.
This has been your Uncle Dudley reporting