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Wax for real cold

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
I'm a firm believer that for non-racing in 98% of conditions, all you need is a few coats of all-purpose wax.

I have noticed when it gets real cold, near zero F to below zero F, particularly when there is new machine-made or natural powder, that the snow can get really slow.

For these conditions, what kind of wax would you recommend? 


Right now I have a brick of red for warm and green for cold but that didn't help when it was -5 at K-mart a few weeks ago.

-l2t
post #2 of 23
Universal waxes seem to lose effectiveness at the high and low ends of their 'stated' temperature ranges. A hard and cold wax like Maplus P1-Cold or Race base Hard will perform much better than universals combined with a fine base structure and lots of brushing. If super dry, static electricity may be a culprit and a hard graphite might be an option. Dominator Exreme cold and Toko blue are other options.
Edited by Alpinord - 12/30/09 at 8:07am
post #3 of 23
 I don't race. However, I do ski at Sunday River and Sugarbush in the temperature range you described. Maplus P2 Cold has worked very well for me. Recently, I was at Sugarbush North and got off the Summit Quad to sub zero and very breezy (on the cusp of wind hold) conditions. The Maplus P2 Cold worked well all day on abrasive, windblown, scratchy, manmade snow. I will use it again this weekend and all next week.
post #4 of 23
I've been surprised how well the LF Maplus P2 cold works in dryer snows around here. An anal nordic, wax fanatic friend loves the stuff around here as well for skate skiing.
post #5 of 23
When it gets real cold. scraping and brushing is very important.  Scrape and brush really well. then put the ski outside.  Supposedly, according to the church of pseudo scientific waxing, the base contracts and extrudes a bit more wax.  Brush then again with a brush stiff enough for hard waxes, then again with a polishing brush.

This prep makes the difference between a good day and drudgery for a skate skier, as Alpinord pointed out.

I often just bring classic skis.

 On the mountain it can make a world of difference too.  My wife and I spent a day lapping a powder stash where we could glide out where others hiked the traverse.
post #6 of 23
Props to Maplus  RBH.

I used to love Cerax 5 for down to -20F; Holmenkol Nanospeed cold is too $$$ and doesn't cover as wide a range.
post #7 of 23
I don't think that fluoro is much of an advantage at this temperature. I have done as well with the cheapest cold hydro wax- many times green wax (Toko used to make a nice one in particular that won me a few races) in races as others with more expensive products. Low fluoro is a compromise that is not much more, it would be hard to justify spending money on a high fluoro product unless I was world cup or sponsored. Cold Graphite can also be another a good choice depending on the snow - man made is definitely harder to deal with than natural.

The worst is the mixing of both- skiing through spots with sections of man made and then the usually wetter and different natural snow can cause problems for any waxing selection.
Edited by RShea - 12/30/09 at 10:03am
post #8 of 23
I don't think the LF is a deterrent as one might expect and not necessarily an advantage, although in eastern NE, I think I recall that there could still be some humidity, even in the cold.
post #9 of 23
By far the best combination for dry snow around -20c is something most of people would probably never think about, and even less try. Mix 2/3 of Toko HF Dibloc blue and 1/3 of Toko HF Dibloc yellow. Yes it's strange but it does miracles ;) If it's about racing, layer of Toko Jetstream bloc blue on top adds some extra speed ;)
post #10 of 23
I use Slik green (and all the other colors for the appropriate temps) when it gets subzero here in NW Colorado. Slik is not a popular wax and is distributed by Wintersteiger in SLC. Slik was developed by a brother of a Tahoe race coach, who had access to Stanford University chem lab around 1980. The wax was a hit in the Sierras and was used by rec skiers and racers. The hard wax is easy to scrape without a lot of chipping. Most of all, it glides really well
post #11 of 23
It is cold here in Michigan.
Skis don't run well when ther is no liquid water in the snow.
I use the Toko LF3 or similar.
Structure is a big drag in real cold conditions.
An open base structure is great as it warms but in cold weather you want smooth and hard.

If you want to save money some Holmenkohl Start Green XC wax is hard and fast.
Don't brush it out of the structure, just scrape it smooth and polish it till it shines.

Getting these waxes off is hell when it warms up and you need something else.
post #12 of 23
Anything good to travel with that can be corked or rubbed on? I was in -7 last week in very dry powdery conditions, the boards were sticky as crap.  (not that the conditions were bad :) )
post #13 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

Anything good to travel with that can be corked or rubbed on? I was in -7 last week in very dry powdery conditions, the boards were sticky as crap.  (not that the conditions were bad :) )

Toko Dibloc works -very- well with corking.
post #14 of 23
is that a liquid?  can't fly with liquid wax's.
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

is that a liquid?  can't fly with liquid wax's.

I wouldn't have recommended it if it was. 
post #16 of 23
thanks bro'  just checking!  I don't want to get tortured by the evil regional Airport TSA folks... too much time on their hands...  :)
post #17 of 23
I hear ya.  

With the recent media handwringing who knows what they're going to suspect. ??  

I usually make sure there's a package or wrapper that says 'Ski Wax' in nice factory lettering.
post #18 of 23
Yup, I have had my liquid wax pulled at small regionals before. the big A/P's don't bother.
post #19 of 23
You can always ship or have shipped liquids or other items of concern to avoid headaches.
post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn View Post

I'm a firm believer that for non-racing in 98% of conditions, all you need is a few coats of all-purpose wax.

I have noticed when it gets real cold, near zero F to below zero F, particularly when there is new machine-made or natural powder, that the snow can get really slow.

For these conditions, what kind of wax would you recommend? 


Right now I have a brick of red for warm and green for cold but that didn't help when it was -5 at K-mart a few weeks ago.

-l2t

 

As Newfydog has written, the cross country guys are the ones who live and die by wax. Toko has a great article available on waxing for cold conditions and the factors that go into it. It is written from the nordic perspective, though.

Most of the wax tech articles written concern the nordic side of the sport. It's just less critical in alpine.
Edited by trtaylor57 - 12/30/09 at 8:17pm
post #21 of 23
Swix CH6 Blue or Holmenkol HC Blue.  PITA to scrape and brush but very effective
post #22 of 23
+1 for Alpinord's rec of Maplus Race Base Hard (or Swix CH4 which seems similar -- http://www.racewax.com/product/FA-3681/SWIX_Hydrocarbon_Wax_CH4_180_grams__FA3681.html).  Superhard and hard to work with == as noted scraping/brushing is key and is tough with these products.  Couple of shortcuts that have worked for me in cold eastern conditions with abrasive snow are: 

-- turn up the iron to get the hot stuff melted and absorbed.

-- apply as thin as you can and do a light scrape while still warm, to avoid having a thick impenetrable crust to take off when fully dried.

-- first wax a light layer of your normal wax tip to tail (in my case, green RaceWax HC, or an all condition Toko HC), and then drip the
Race Base Hard or CH4 at the center of the ski and along the edges under your binding.  Even just mixed with a regular wax, the hard stuff helps slide in the cold and will maintain durability on abrasive snow

-- same as above but instead of using the hard stuff in block form, sprinkle on the powder equivalent: Swix CH3 cold powder (http://www.racewax.com/c=NPYGGbHkzLjmFtFeCID0CGn9z/product/FA-1216/SWIX_CH3_Cold_Powder_Ski_Wax__FA1216.html) or Toko X-Cold Powder (http://www.reliableracing.com/detail.cfm?edp=10319879).  Someone recommended breaking down a CH4 block with a cheese grater but I couldn't get that to work properly with either CH4 or the Maplus race base; it wasted a lot of wax and it's easier and maybe cheaper to just get the powder product to start with.

-- Last but not least: rotobrush is your friend.  I just got one and the brass brush just kills the CH4 type stuff -- 60 seconds and done much better than 10 minutes of hand brushing.
post #23 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Finndog View Post

Anything good to travel with that can be corked or rubbed on? I was in -7 last week in very dry powdery conditions, the boards were sticky as crap.  (not that the conditions were bad :) )
I have had some luck with Dominator Rocket (not Race Rocket) to rub on and cork in at the last minute. I have also been temped to try a few of the liquids or pastes out there, but have not ordered and tested any yet.
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