10 February 2005

Wax On, Wax Off

It's that time again—time to strip the wax off the board and give the board a new wax job. I'm funny with wax. Or should I say I'm borderline obsessive-compulsive when it comes to the wax on my boards. I used to strip the wax off every three weeks. I don't know what it is. The wax job on my board must be as close to my idea of perfect as it can be. I've finally calmed down a little. I think the wax on my longboard has been on since late December. It was raining . . . yet again. I'd stripped the wax off specifically to keep me from going in the water on one of the few rain-free days we had during that storm. All I remember is watching Singlefin: Yellow too many times while I waxed my board. (A board this long will give you a shoulder injury if you try to wax it as quickly as possible. I've learned to take my time, take breaks, and be patient.)

So!! I've been using the sticky wax now that the water has gotten cold. After a few sessions, friction causes the wax to rub off in spots. I used to immediately strip the wax off and rewax the board when this happened. Now, I accept that these holes in the wax will occur. I finally gave up on this wax job for two reasons: 1) San Onofre (since I feel like I brought some negative karma home with me from that session) and 2) the wax hole turned into wax holes. Besides, I actually like waxing surfboards. There's something truly Zen about it. You can free your mind while waxing a board (especially a longboard). Yes, I spend a lot of money on wax, but it's not like wax is expensive. Even though most people would say the wax job in the picture looks great, I consider it a disaster. I know, I know. I'm weird.

Wax of choice: Sex Wax Quick Humps (Green or Orange)
Bars used on a big-ass log of a surfboard: Between three and six (depending on how bumpy I want the wax to be)
Time it takes to wax the aforementioned log: Between an hour and two hours (depending upon how many breaks I take)
Wax I hate: Sticky/Chicky Bumps


At 2/11/05, 4:37 PM, Blogger crustyripper said...

I like Sticky Bumps, but S/W Quick Humps is good too. I am very lazy about waxing my board - you would think it is very dirty. But I think I learned my lesson. I jumped up on a little two footer Thurs. and my foot promptly slid right off the hardened wax so I wiped out. I thought: "maybe I should put a little wax on every time I paddle out". Don't give up on San-O, some of my best surf memories are there and I've only been a few times. Definitely a summer spot, and a great scene.

At 2/13/05, 9:32 AM, Blogger Dan & Scott said...

You might try using only hard wax on your board. I use Basecoat only (Sticky Bumps) on all my boards/during all seasons for the folowing reasons:
1) No smearing, so you can kiss those clear spots under your feet goodbye,
2) the wax job lasts longer, so you don't have to change it as often, and
3) It doesn't melt as easy when it gets hot.
To apply, I start by using a single-edged razor blade (in a holder) to strip off the old wax. Then rub on the new wax using the minimum amount of pressure that your patience will allow. Less pressure on the wax bar means smaller, taller humps (the ultimate, but this takes time to achieve). If the wax is smearing during application it means ther deck has softer wax on it and needs to be cleaned (I use rubbing alcohol). Never using soft wax means you avoid ever having to clean the deck.
A perfect wax job has small humps that have sharp edges. I usually apply about 1/2 of a bar of Sticky Bumps to my 9'-8" to start, and then rub on fresh wax before every session, that way the wax never gets slippery.


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