Honda CBR 1000RR Cleaning

November 2005

I've owned several bikes over the years and have tried all sorts of methods to keep them clean.  Years ago I rode in all types of weather from rain to sleet and snow.  Luckily, I no longer HAVE to ride in bad weather and can choose the days I ride.  I do everything possible to avoid inclement weather these days, and have been pretty successful with the 1000RR.  So far she's not seen rain.  I know some people don't mind riding in bad weather, but for me a ride is to be enjoyable and with rain causing the bike to become extremely filthy with road grime that seems to get into every crevice, not to mention there can be traction problems as well as poor visibility, I only ride on sunny days at this point to avoid all the aforementioned problems.  I'll give tips on how I clean my bike, as well as things I picked up over the years to help those who still ride in bad weather.

I use Honda Polish on the entire bike, including the wheels.  This stuff works on everything, and makes short work of bugs, grime, tar, grease, and chain lube fling.  Simply spray it on, let it sit about 60 seconds, and wipe the bike down.  Be sure to use micro fiber cloths available very cheaply priced at nearly every automotive store.  The micro fiber cloths won't scratch the finish and don't leave behind any lint.  I typically clean my bike with Honda Polish after every ride.  This keeps any dirt, bugs, or road grime from permanently spotting or otherwise damaging the finish.  Bird droppings are known for causing spots if left to sit on the finish so wipe those off immediately.  This will typically only take me about 20 or 30 minutes to complete.

Once a year I'll polish the bike.  My bike lives in a garage out of direct sunlight, so if you have to park outside, you'll want to polish the bike more often.  I have found Meguiar's Tech Wax to be the best wax I've ever used.  It goes on easily, polishes off easily, and best of all leaves no white powder residue all over everything.  This wax performs as advertised leaving the body panels very slick to the touch and removing fine scratches.

To help avoid causing swirls in the paint finish, you need to clean the bike carefully before polishing.  If you ride in a lot of rain or other bad weather, you'll need to use water, car wash, and a gentle sponge.  I say car wash, because dish detergent IS NO GOOD.  It strips wax, so unless you want to strip the wax first before re-applying, do not use dish soap.  If you've washed the bike with water and car wash, then be sure to dry it thoroughly to avoid rust or discoloration.  I've found using an air hose works great.  Next, just polish the bike per the instructions on the box of Meguiar's Tech Wax which is simply to apply the product using the included applicator, letting it haze, then buffing off with a micro fiber cloth.  If you're like me and avoid riding in inclement weather, you can simply wipe the bike down with Honda Polish prior to applying the Tech Wax product.

For harder to remove scratches, you can try Meguiar's Scratch X.  I've had mixed success with this product depending on the severity of the blemish.  I'd say that if this product will not remove the swirl or scratch, you'll have to use a buffing machine to get it out.

That's about all I've ever had to do to my bike.  One other step you might consider if you ride in a lot of wet weather would be to remove the plastics and spray the engine down with WD-40.  This is a moisture repellent and will help alleviate some of the rust and discoloration water can cause.


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