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Do new skis need a wax?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Just bought some new skis (Atomic Nomad Blackeyes) and was wondering if they are ok to ski on straight out of the factory or do they need to be waxed first?
post #2 of 21
about as much as new posters need to use the SEARCH function.

(sorry for being brash, thats just my way of saying yes, wax those bad boys up and learn how to use these boards)
post #3 of 21
AHHHHH!!!! the "use the search function" flame!

Welcome to epicski colled. The wax that comes on new skis is more of a storage wax then a skiing wax. They'll work fine, but if you do have the ability to wax skis, yes you should. In fact waxing them a few times will work to get the wax deeper into the pores.

This is also advised after a stonegrind.
post #4 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz View Post
AHHHHH!!!! the "use the search function" flame!
I felt it was the only proper way to welcome a new member!!

Welcome aboard Colled and use that search for function!! it will answer more questions than any of us responding to a new post can
post #5 of 21
post #6 of 21
Yes.

JONG
post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
Ok cheers, I guess I should have USED THE SEARCH FUNCTION

If you think about it, after a while every topic would have been asked/posted about atleast once and then everyone would just need to search for it and then no more posts would ever be needed and then the forum would just die! Wierd huh

Yeah I do wax my own skis normally, but the factory finish on the bases looks good, certainly doesn't look like just a protective wax.
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by colled View Post
Yeah I do wax my own skis normally, but the factory finish on the bases looks good, certainly doesn't look like just a protective wax.
It takes several waxing cycles to saturate the base, to increase glide, protection and durability. The objective is to get wax INTO the base, not ON the base.

Try taking a white paper towel or rag, wet it and wipe down your bases. You might be surprised to find dirt and grim. An initial cleaning and at least one or two wax cycles would be better than not doing anything.

Here's a magnified base image. See all the nooks and crannies, the wax (white) is trying to adhere to:

post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by colled View Post
Ok cheers, I guess I should have USED THE SEARCH FUNCTION

If you think about it, after a while every topic would have been asked/posted about atleast once and then everyone would just need to search for it and then no more posts would ever be needed and then the forum would just die! Wierd huh

Yeah I do wax my own skis normally, but the factory finish on the bases looks good, certainly doesn't look like just a protective wax.
The base acts as a reservoir of wax that bleeds out during skiing to lubricate the surface. It might look good on the surface but if it is dry deeper into the base, the base will dry out fast. A few bucks worth of wax is a good way to protect your new investment.
post #10 of 21
Also, before you wax, find out if the shop did a stone-grind on the base. Skis coming out of the factory may not have a flat base. If the shop didn't do a grind, make them check the base with a true bar and flatten as needed (or do it yourself if you have the tools).
post #11 of 21
if there Atomic... they're flat. I have had dozens of pairs in the past few years... the only problem I have ever had is the early "wax cup" at the tip and tail of the sport/ rec level skis. The race skis have always been best out of the wrapper and after a few waxings... Atomic rips!
post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz View Post
but if you do have the ability to wax skis, yes you should. In fact waxing them a few times will work to get the wax deeper into the pores.

This is also advised after a stonegrind.
If you do not have the ability to wax the skis yourself, check to see if your local shop has a reasonably priced thermal bag or hot box treatment.


I would consider a reasonable price to be 3X or less the cost of a hot wax.
post #13 of 21
So clearly the point has been made that yes, waxing new skis is probably a good idea.

But,,, had you considered tuning the skis as well?

Note- not only do most skis NOT come with anything close to the correct bottom and side bevel. You will also generally see poor or incorrect or no base structuring. You will also commonly see base high or base low conditions and almost always see case hardening on various spots on the edges. These conditions will all contribute to crappy handling and speed.

All of these conditions are easily fixable via a good tuning.

Your new skis deserve at least one good tune it their miserable lives don't you think? And if you are inclined, you can keep them in tune throughout the season which will extend that "new ski" feel. If you should start each season with this tuning ritual you will find that it is easy to keep your skis running better for longer.

Check out the thread on recomended tuning shops and find one in your area. BTW: Don't just walk into just any shop and ask them the "tune" your skis. Why?

A couple years ago I was demoing a pair of skis at Equipe Sports (at the base of Mt Snow) and I asked them if the skis has been tuned. They said no but they would be happy to do so. When I returned later to pick them up I happend to see them running the skis through a belt sander and then the "tech" happily handed me my newly tuned sticks.

I didn't buy the skis...

Get someone who knows what they are doing to do it right.

And yes putting wax on them would be a good move too.
post #14 of 21
Or you could just go ski 'em for a few days & then get a good hot wax...

The odds of "needing" a tune on a new pair of Atomics approach nil.
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alpinord View Post
It takes several waxing cycles to saturate the base, to increase glide, protection and durability. The objective is to get wax INTO the base, not ON the base.

Try taking a white paper towel or rag, wet it and wipe down your bases. You might be surprised to find dirt and grim. An initial cleaning and at least one or two wax cycles would be better than not doing anything.

Here's a magnified base image. See all the nooks and crannies, the wax (white) is trying to adhere to:

[hijack] That's a cool set of photos. Gosh, it doesn't seem like there's much wax across the surface area. Is that a freshly waxed ski or an "average" one, or one that is dry? [/hijack]
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by spindrift View Post
Or you could just go ski 'em for a few days & then get a good hot wax...

The odds of "needing" a tune on a new pair of Atomics approach nil.
Sure you could ski any number of days before you wax. The damage you'll do happens a little at a time so a few days won't really matter much. But if you are going to do it anyway way wait? What's the point? To see how they run w/o wax?

Why waste $50+ per day on ski tickets and all that money for new skis and not have the best experience you can?

Or put another way- you could also ski a few days without a hat or gloves too; wouldn't be the end of the world. But why would you want to?

The answer is- because it wouldn't be as much fun...
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by BobHarwood View Post
[hijack] That's a cool set of photos. Gosh, it doesn't seem like there's much wax across the surface area. Is that a freshly waxed ski or an "average" one, or one that is dry? [/hijack]
IIRC correctly it's showing a small amount of solid, powder & spray (cold & heated) on a base. I think it simply shows base structure but not clear on actual wax amount. The CRS is winning at the moment and I do not recall precisely the intent of the image. I'm trying to track down a better description and will try and clarify.

Here are some more images on wax saturation levels between solid, powder & liquids (cold & heated). The shots showing 50 times the surface area in the same view size @ 200 microns (0.2 mm) compared to the images at scale of 4 microns (0.004 mm):



Solid Wax on Base (electron microscope 4 & 200 microns):





Spray Wax on Base (electron microscope 4 & 200 microns):



post #18 of 21
Cool stuff! Hey I look at it this way, it's fun to wax and tune your gear so go ahead; wax the tops sheets while your at it too! (it does help to prevent ice and snow build up.)
post #19 of 21

More than 40 yrs skis have been waxed on the top of stone ground base. The question is why, because the glide properties of used base material UHMWPE are the best of all known.

The answer comes from stone grinding. The stone ground surface is liable to wetability and the bonded water in the base bridges with the moisture on the ski bath. In order to avoid this the separate wax layer or layers are applied to avoid bridging. Wax disappears with in half an hour of skiing.

The best way is to remove the wetting surface by scrapeing it off. Then the new metho in Finland is to apply a very hard wax particles on surface (particle size like smoke in the air) which is hamered by special made rod in the drill. The ski bcomes very fast and very low kinetic frictition makes it easy  in up hills (skate). New service is needed after 400 kms.

 

post #20 of 21

. Then the new metho in Finland is to apply a very hard wax particles on surface (particle size like smoke in the air) which is hamered by special made rod in the drill.

 

 Huh? 

 

I need further explanation to have any idea what this is about.

post #21 of 21

Absolutely!  However,  extruded bases won't "hold wax", so those need wax more often.  Sintered bases of a high quality will "hold" much more wax.  Base preparation is most important with a sintered base.  As far as wax making them fast depends on snow temps., depth, age, dryness, or wetness of the given snow.  If you wax too soft you may not go fast at all.  There is much info on the subject and one could write a entire book I guess. 

Here are a few videos that I made that may help you.


 

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