Using a plastic pop bottle to protect bicycle frames from road salt and sand.

My dogs... out for a run. Chasing me on the bike. Snow was packed hard on the pathways through the dog walk park which made it easy to get up some speed on my Trek Navigator 2.0

Big black dog is Cupie (lab/collie mix). Brown/black Springer is Maxy (she's a social butterfly). The black miniature poodle is Chester! Its hard for Chester's little legs to keep up but he always seems to catch up when we stop for a break.

On the bike is my free water bottle from Ridley's Cycle in Calgary. Thanks for the gift!

I was having a bit of trouble with the rear fender. The point where it mounted to the bicycle frame was narrow. This allowed road salt and dirt to build up on the frame. If not removed, the road salt will eat through the paint and rust out the frame.

Rather than deal with such a mess after every ride, I decided to cut a gingerale pop bottle and mounted it with the fender bolt like this...

The flat piece of frame at the top of the photo holds a lot of road salt and dirt. The salt and dirt are difficult to remove because it is very difficult to reach in between all the frame components to remove it.

I should have left the bottle piece a little wider to help protect the chain more from salt/sand. As you can see, it helps protect the chain from dirt off the rear wheel.

This last photo shows the Allen bolt where half of a plastic gingerale bottle was mounted. This quick fix sure helps keep the road salt and dirt off a difficult to clean section of the frame. I had to use a paint brush to clean the dirt out last time. If sand is left on the frame and gets wet, especially if it contains salt, it will lift the paint off the frame and allow corrosion to ruin the frame. The extra width of the pop bottle helps to keep the bicycle much cleaner in winter cycling.

As a good piece of advice. Bolts on fenders can corrode as well. To help prevent corrosion on the bolt threads, remove bolts and rub some grease into the threads before reinstalling them. This helps to seal off the threads and prevent dirt/water from getting into the threads and rusting the bolt into the frame. If the bolt rusts to the frame, you may not have any choice but to drill out the entire bolt, hoping to remove the bolt in pieces so the threads in the hole remain intact and ready to accept a new replacement bolt.

Winter cycling is often messy. Keeping your bicycle clean is an important and necessary winter task. My first bicycle had wide fenders which extended past the frame, helping to keep it clean. These Bontrager fenders were fitted to the bike when purchased. For some odd reason, Bontrager fenders are cut narrow at the point where they should extend below the frame and allow lots of dirt and debris kicked up by the rear wheel to lodge in the frame. Other than this issue, I really like these Bontrager fenders and they look great on the bike! 

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