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LustreLab TBC (Total Bike Care)

Can one cleaning product do it all? | August 2004

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Total Bike Care

WWhere most cleaning products available are designed for automobiles, LustreLab designed their new TBC (Total Bike Care) specifically for motorcycles. Designed to deal with vastly different surfaces, from delicate rubber hoses, seals and gaskets to precious paint, LusterLab promises that their product is a one-step cleaner. Strong enough for degreasing duties, gentle enough for painted surfaces, only leaving behind a streak-free protective coating.

The brochure claims to “clean, degrease and shine multiple surfaces including: stainless steel, rubber, vinyl, glass, aluminum, plexi-glass, fiber-glass and more! Replacing the need for purchasing multiple cleaners and polishers saving you time and money. LustreLabs ‘Acrylionic' formula leaves a streak-free protective coating that helps repel grease and grim, making cleaning quicker and easier. The protective ‘Acrylionic' finish is renewed with each wash. TBC is packaged ready-to-use, environmentally friendly, (contains no petroleum distillates), dries streak-free, eliminated the need in most cases for towel drying, and creates a gentile, softening effect on your skin.”

Lustrelab TBC Total Bike Cleaner with Honda Hawk GT Motorcycle in the background

Okay, okay. That's what the brochure says, anyway. All that sounds like your average infomercial promises and we were skeptical as we set out to put it to the test and find out for ourselves!

The Hawk had endured several months without a bath, including commuting duties and a few trips to the track. Needless to say, it was coated with a layer of dust, dirt, water-spots and chain-fling, making the bike look less than its potential. The back of the bottle asks that the whole bike be thoroughly rinsed then, only one section of the bike is to be washed at a time. With the products claim of “degreasing” abilities, I did not want to deter from the instructions for fear of damaging more delicate components.

The bike was rinsed, then, adhering to the directions, I washed the bike one section at a time. While TBC is nowhere near as potent as Simple Green (one of our favorite products) it was able to cut through flung chain lube relatively easily, but where it excelled was in eliminating dried and caked on bugs. A squirt, a quick rub and all but the most tenacious bugs let go. After that, cutting through average dirt and water sports was not a problem. However, the product does not lather up like traditional car-wash, nor did it have a distinct color like Simple Green, so it was hard to tell how well the product was working until everything was done.

After the bike dried, it did feature a sparkly glaze, making the bike look like it was freshly waxed and polished. Even the stainless steel header pipes looked great. The only surface where the product didn't do too well was on the titanium exhaust canister. On the titanium, it left a streaky and blotchy look.

All in all, it was hard to believe the claims of a single-do-everything product. But after the first wash, I was starting to believe, after the second wash I was convinced. Its perfect for quick washes and allows the bike to come out gleaming. TBC can get overwhelmed during extensive, thorough cleaning after 10-12 days on the road. However, if you are as particular as I am about keeping the bikes clean, the product is ideal and a wonderful time saver when the second or third quick bath of the month is all thats needed.

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P.O. Box 91191
Salt Lake City, UT 84109-1191