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Waxing for very cold snow - GS races - How to avoid sticking?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi All

I welcome your thoughts on waxing for very cold (say minus 20 C) air temps. My daughter had a GS race last weekend. We waxed with Swix LF4 and Toko Cold Powder. We did not use HF. We removed all traces of the surface wax through scraping when still warm, reheat and rescrape. We copper, horsehair and nylon brushed with roto and hand brushes. We put the skiis outside and brushed again. I'm sure we got it all. Atleast I think so. But her skiis still stuck to a degree. Would using cold powder only have helped? Any other solutions? What do the Noram / World Cup race technicians do in these conditions?

I've heard of something called Molecule F Sub-Zero Hydrator. This is a "hyrophilic" substance. It is the opposite of Cera F. It apparently repels water. Anyone have any experience with this? Does it work? Does it last through the initial training runs and two race runs?

Thanks for your help.


[ January 26, 2004, 09:06 PM: Message edited by: skiracersdad ]
post #2 of 10
Hey skiracersdad,

I think you missed a couple of forums in your wild cross-posting.

You sure you don't want to post this in the Fitness forum and the Resort Forum, too? How about Consumer Gear Reviews?

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your kind words.

I didn't know where to put this. It didn't seem to fit in one or the other. And the folks who read/post in the Ski Instruction forum may not be the same as the folks in the General Discussion or Ski Gear sections.

However,your advise would be gratefully appreciated, if you wish to offer it.

Its snowing heavily outside. Should be a great ski weekend. Relax and enjoy it.

Best regards

post #4 of 10
I haven't kept up with all this "wax tech" as most parents, like you, have their own routines.
About 15 years ago a Swix rep showed me something that worked better than all of the "high tech" stuff the last time I compared it(3 or 4 years ago).
Start with a clean base.
Iron on Swix G20 Nordic Glider(green).
Scrape it hot.
Brush with a nylon brush making little "cupping" motions down the length of the ski while it's still warm.
Guarenteed to be very fast with no sticking. The day the guy showed it to me it was -20 deg F and the kid won the race by a bunch. The day I compared it it was -15 F at Duluth MN and it was good for almost a second in a slalom.
Best of all, it's CHEAP. [img]graemlins/evilgrin.gif[/img]

[ January 27, 2004, 08:41 AM: Message edited by: SLATZ ]
post #5 of 10
For very cold sub zero temps i use LF4. Because this wax is so hard and so difficult to melt onto the ski i crayon it in. I start out by stripping all of the old wax and base burn from the ski with a brass brush and sharp scraper. Then i base wax with LF7 or CH7 - craying it in only, then ironing it, then scraping the leftovers off while the bases are still warm. Then i brush it with nylon to ensure that it it very smooth. After this is done i get out the LF4, and crayon that into the base, as much as possible, because it is soooo hard. Usually it takes a few attempts to keep it from just scraping off the fresh wax on the ski. Then i iron it. The nice part about crayoning in the really cold waxes, is that they go on so thin that you do not have to worry about them cracking, and you dont have to use a really high heat setting on your iron to melt them. After you iron this into the base, immediately run over with a scraper to get any wax bumps or ridges off the base. Then brush the base with a nylon brush, and sometimes i wipe it down with a soft rag. Last night i also corked the base after i was done brushing the final time, and the results seemed to be VERY good (but i was only running LF6 last night). If you work enough of the CH4 or LF4 into the base, you should be just fine at the race. If the temps look like they are going to go up by second run, but still be really cold, i base with LF6 instead of CH7 or LF7. If your base is really dry, i reccommend at least one crayoned coat of CH7 CH8 LF7 or LF8 every time you wax the skis - unless you prefer prep wax.

obtw - i only use Swix Alpine waxes as you may have noticed, so my knowledge is limited to those.
post #6 of 10
Not to drastically change the subject, but why scrape, cork or do anything else other than just iron the wax on?
post #7 of 10
I'm sure there are a variety of waxing methods out there.

Without getting into base prep or other topics, most wax and tuning companies suggest hot waxing, letting the wax cool to room temperature or overnight to let the wax settle into the base, and then scraping with a sharp plexi scraper followed by brushing to remove excess wax from the structure. Generally you can't brush too much.

Excess wax left on the base is slower, and generally collects dirt and other stuff best left out of ski bases. I've also heard that excess wax pulls wax out of the base as you ski in certain conditions. Can't say that I know for sure, but I'm not willing to find out either.

Racers spend a large amount of time prepping skis. Check out the Swix alpine ski prep guide for a more detailed procedure. Most of us don't go through all of those steps for fun- there is a method to the madness.
post #8 of 10
Originally posted by chasboy:
Not to drastically change the subject, but why scrape, cork or do anything else other than just iron the wax on?
Because just ironing the wax does not leave a smooth surface. Scraping is all that is required to get a smooth surface. brushing, corking, etc creates a surface that glides faster depending upon the snow surface.

post #9 of 10
Also, with very hard waxes you cannot drip them on and iron them without dammaging your base. The only way to work the wax into the base is to crayon it, brush it, and cork it. This is also the only possible way to get very cold wax smooth. If you have ever used CH4 or LF4, you will notice that the block of wax is so hard that it is brittle. If it is dripped onto the base it will just peel off. The same goes for if a thick layer is applied - it will chip and crack off the ski. If you try to scrape a thick layer, it will just chip the wax off your ski. The only successful way of getting this kind of wax on/in the ski is the method that stated above. Personally i hate cold waxes because they are so hard, but when you have to go fast, there arent many other options.
post #10 of 10
OK, I understand. [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]
However, brushes are mentioned a number of times. What kind of brushes are we talking about? AND with the cold/hard waxes, you basically rub them on like a crayon, and then use a brush???
I also saw a brass bristle brush mentioned somewhere. Doesn't that rough up the smooth surface waxing is supposed to provide?
btw, I have gone to the Swix and Toko sites, looking at base tuning tools but I really don't know what I'm looking at and what is important. I had made a '2-way" ski tuning bench over 20 years ago, where I could file 2 ski edges at one time, and then do one base at a time. It has since warped, and the wood it was made of has gone to other projects. Back in those days, we basically had 3 color waxes, yellow, red and blue (I think). All one did was iron them on, scrape, and cork if you were of a mind to. (I never scraped, which is why I asked my original question) [img]tongue.gif[/img]
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