by Wil Barrett
March 8, 2017
Bicycle maintenance is one of those god-awful tasks that is universally disliked by mountain bikers. Though for the riders out there who choose to ride all-year round, keeping your bike clean and lubed is an evil necessity that requires a certain level of discipline – especially in the colder and wetter months. To help ease the burden, we found a new device at the London Bike Show that should make the whole process that little bit more tolerable…
Karcher is a name that most folks will be familiar with, and at the very least, you’ll surely recognise that distinctive yellow coloured pressure washer. Makers of what seems like an infinite range of pressure washers designed for both commercial and home use, Karcher recently unveiled its most compact and portable washer yet. Called the OC3, this little guy is labelled as a “portable outdoor cleaner” rather than a pressure washer.
“Whether you’re a mountain biker, a dog walker, a camper or simply love spending time in the great outdoors, trailing mud into your car, tent or caravan is never a happy end to the day. What’s more, leaving dried-on dirt on your outdoor equipment doesn’t do it any favours – it’s much better to rinse it off as soon as possible. That’s where the Kärcher Portable Cleaner comes in – a simple and lightweight solution for cleaning on the go.” – Karcher.
The Karcher OC3 Specifications
- Compact portable pressure washer
- 4 litre water tank
- Rechargeable lithium ion battery
- 15 minute run time
- 180 minute charge time
- Low pressure design with flat jet nozzle
- 2.8 meter long hose
- Integrated water filter
- Weight without accessories: 2.2kg
- Dimensions: 277mm x 234mm x 201mm
- RRP: £129
The Karcher OC3 features a 4 litre water reservoir with a rechargeable lithium ion battery, which helps to deliver a low-pressure spray. It’s designed as such so it can fit in the back of your car, so that you can be a Diligent David and give your bike a quick spray down immediately after the ride while you’re at the trail head, rather than 3-hours later after all the mud has dried out and your chain has gone all crusty with muck. Go on and admit it – we’ve all been there!
The plastic nozzle uses a large trigger for activating the water spray, and a coiled 2.8m long hose gives decent length between the base unit and the nozzle.
To demonstrate the OC3 washer, Karcher had a muddy Orange Five it was using on display in the booth, which was routinely sprayed with mud throughout the four-day long expo. As such, the Karcher booth was a delightful visit for anyone looking for some OCD respite.
The pressure that comes out of the OC3 isn’t particularly powerful, but that’s kind of the point. Rather than pummelling bearings and seals into oblivion with a high-pressure blast, the low-pressure water spray is primarily called upon for washing off a bike that’s already wet and muddy from riding. And for folks who live in apartment buildings or units without access to a hose, the OC3 could be a neat solution to keep near the back door of your house for giving your bike a quick once-over at the end of a ride before stowing it away.
Want to see the Karcher OC3 in action? Then have a gander at our Facebook Live video below, where we get a look at the washer doing its thing. For further info, head to the Karcher website.