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Household candle for hot waxing base layer in cross country ski?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Due to some funny situations, the local sport store left out the grip part of my classic cross country skis from any form of waxing. It's bone dry now and just rubbing on grip wax with a cork won't swing it as I found out yesterday. I need a base wax layer under the foot area of my skis.
I don't want to buy a base wax stick just for the base sections of my skis...so can I use ordinary candle wax for applying the base layer by hot waxing? Note that I will crayon on the grip wax on top of this base wax when I am out skiing. The other option is to use the grip wax crayon for hot waxing in the base layer (and just rub in the same wax stick to use as a grip wax when outside).
Any suggestion which is a better way?cool.gif

post #2 of 10
Do you have any klister? I read somewhere it works well as base binder and it seems to work too when I waxed skis for my parents.

Fail that I'd use grip wax for base over candle wax.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Sorry no klister. Any idea why ordinary wax might not be good? Just curious...
 

post #4 of 10
No particular reason, just I think grip wax will stick better to each other than to candle wax.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Ok thanks!

post #6 of 10

I wouldn't use klister, for sure. Yikes. I also don't understand why the grip wax won't take, even if the base is dried out. Assume we are talking p-tex here, not hickory, correct?

 

In any case I would clean the section of the base in question using alcohol, or base cleaner if you have it, and a clean Scotch Brite. (If it's already dried out, this shouldn't hurt, so don't gasp, hot-scrape advocates. I just want to make sure there are no oils or whatever on there causing a problem.) If you don't have any glide wax, crayon on the hardest kick wax you have, heavily. (You don't want a warm kick wax, because it's easier to layer warm wax on hard than vice-versa. Plus you don't want to stick if you're out on a cold day and wear through the outer layer of kick wax. You are trying to create a durable, abrasion-resistant binding layer.) Iron this in at the lowest heat that will melt the wax. Scrape it all off thoroughly with a plastic scraper while still warm. Apply the wax again and iron it in in the same way. Allow to cool thoroughly. Scrape it all off again. (This will be more difficult because you are using a hard wax that has cooled.) Brush thoroughly - preferably with a metal brush followed by a nylon or bristle brush. Now you are ready to cork on the kick wax. Hope that helps.

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

Wow, this is really detailed, thanks much.

A couple of quick questions - should each round of coating have only one pass of ironing, or more? Also, and this one is something I have always been confused about seeing the large variation in the approach - after the final pass of ironing for each coating, should the wax be allowed to cool off completely or just scrape off asap after the ironing? 

By the time the scraping starts some suggest the wax layer should appear smoky. Is that recommended when using a hard kick wax (I am assuming by this you meant the ones to be used for colder temperature)?

Thanks again! icon14.gif

post #8 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jajosk View Post

Wow, this is really detailed, thanks much.

A couple of quick questions - should each round of coating have only one pass of ironing, or more? Also, and this one is something I have always been confused about seeing the large variation in the approach - after the final pass of ironing for each coating, should the wax be allowed to cool off completely or just scrape off asap after the ironing? 

By the time the scraping starts some suggest the wax layer should appear smoky. Is that recommended when using a hard kick wax (I am assuming by this you meant the ones to be used for colder temperature)?

Thanks again! icon14.gif

 

All you are doing here is a basic hot wax, the same as you'd do on a skate ski or an alpine ski or on the ends of your classic skis. There is tons of info on this site and elsewhere on how to do that, from people who are much more expert than I am. The only difference in your case is that because you don't want to buy a separate cake of glide wax or binder wax for that purpose you are using your coldest (hardest) kick wax instead. That should work fine for now, but in the long run you will probably break down and buy a cheap block of base wax. Again, the reason you are using the coldest wax is because when / if the kick wax wears through down to the base wax, you don't want to be glomming onto the snow with an underlying warm wax, if it's a cold-snow day. Too much glide is always better than too much grip, unless you're snowshoeing. 

 

If the wax is smoking your iron is too hot. It should melt but not smoke.

 

The first time around you are scraping when the wax is still hot because you're trying to "float" out any tiny particles and/or other crap that's in / on the base. Think of this as a cleaning step to get the wall ready to absorb your primer evenly, with no excessively porous spots, or spots that are seeping oily resin from knots, or whatever.

 

The second time around you are waiting until the wax is cold because you want everything to stabilize before you scrape and brush to create the final surface on which your kick wax of the day will go. Think of this as the "final primer" step. In each case you want to scrape and brush from tip to tail. When you're done the base should be shiny and repel water, and you should be able to see a fingerprint in it, but beyond that you should hardly be able to tell it's been waxed. If it still looks dull or streaky or a tiny bit uneven, you haven't scraped and brushed enough yet.

post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

I wouldn't use klister, for sure. Yikes.

If you search around there are many references to using a thin layer of klister as base binder in abrasive conditions, and it can work better than actual base binder.

That's how I waxed my parents' skis and they said it works well, never tried it myself since I don't have cross country skis.
post #10 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by jajosk View Post

Due to some funny situations, the local sport store left out the grip part of my classic cross country skis from any form of waxing. It's bone dry now and just rubbing on grip wax with a cork won't swing it as I found out yesterday. I need a base wax layer under the foot area of my skis.

You really shouldn't touch grip wax pocket of your classic skis with glide wax. When you do, it's guarantee your wax will be gone way before you will finish with skiing.

So grip wax pocket should be "bone dry". To make kick wax stick even better, use some sand paper on this part of ski. As far as waxing goes, first layer sticks harder, but you put thin first layer (you should always apply only very thin layers anyway, so when you need more wax, add more layers but never apply thick layer), cork that layer into base, and next layer is easy to apply then.

If you are going really long one (30+km) then use base wax, but use kick wax as base not glide wax. If it's icy use cold (blue) klister for this, if it's not, then cold kick wax will do. And you iron it, let it cool, cork it, and let it cool again and only then apply apropriate kick wax on top of this.

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