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SKI TECH: How to follow published wax tips

As you likely are aware, Fast Wax, Toko, and Swix all publish wax tips for hundreds of XC Ski Races across the country. The people putting these wax tips out are professionals and do know their stuff.

As tempting as it might be to guess against them, odds are that they are correct, so I would suggest sticking with the wax tip unless you have a really good reason not to!


We are now at the peak of XC Ski Race season and I've been getting a lot of questions lately about how exactly to follow the instructions that ski wax companies provide in their wax tips.

As an example, following is the official Fast Wax Wax Tip for this year's Pre-Birkie which had excellent results.


Official Fast Wax Glide Wax Tip:
  1. Apply 2 to 3 layers of HSLF-10 Teal over 1 layer of HS-20 Blue
  2. For maximum speed top coat with Flite 11 Arctic 100% Fluoro speed additive
What exactly does this mean and how exactly would you go about applying this wax job?

Following you'll see each and every step that would should be followed in applying the above mentioned wax tip. As you read through this, you'll notice that most of the time in this process is spent scraping the brushing. HERE is a video showing exactly how to properly scrape and brush your skis. There is a wealth of other waxing tech info on the cyclovaxc.com (just do a search for “ski tech”).

Here we go...

Prep:
  1. Brush your ski to clean it with a soft metal brush (soft steel, copper, or soft brass)
  2. Wipe the ski base off with Fiberlene or a piece of paper towel to remove any dirt or left over dust from brushing

Layer 1:
  1. Apply the Fast Wax Blue HS-20 (drip on the wax and iron it in using 3-4 iron passes from the tip of the ski to the tail of the ski)
  2. Let the Wax Cool for 30+ minutes at room temperature
  3. Using a multi-purpose scraper or groove pin, remove the wax from the groove of the ski
  4. Using a sharp plexi glass scraper, scrape the wax off of the ski. If in doubt, stop scraping and move on to the brush. It's very easy to over scrape.
  5. Brush the ski vigorously with a stiff nylon brush until most wax is removed from the ski base surface
  6. Brush the ski gently with a soft metal brush, being careful to only move the brush from tip to tail. 5-6 passes should be good.
  7. Brush the ski moderately with a horsehair brush until all wax is removed from the ski base surface

Layer 2:
  1. Apply the Fast Wax Teal HSLF-10 (drip on the wax and iron it in using 3-4 iron passes from the tip of the ski to the tail of the ski)
  2. Let the Wax Cool for 30+ minutes at room temperature
  3. Using a multi-purpose scraper or groove pin, remove the wax from the groove of the ski
  4. Using a sharp plexi glass scraper, scrape the wax off of the ski. If in doubt, stop scraping and move on to the brush. It's very easy to over scrape.
  5. Brush the ski vigorously with a stiff nylon brush until most wax is removed from the ski base surface
  6. Brush the ski gently with a soft metal brush, being careful to only move the brush from tip to tail. 5-6 passes should be good.
  7. Brush the ski moderately with a horsehair brush until all wax is removed from the ski base surface


Layer 3:
  1. Apply the Fast Wax Teal HSLF-10 (drip on the wax and iron it in using 3-4 iron passes from the tip of the ski to the tail of the ski)
  2. Let the Wax Cool for 30+ minutes at room temperature
  3. Using a multi-purpose scraper or groove pin, remove the wax from the groove of the ski
  4. Using a sharp plexi glass scraper, scrape the wax off of the ski. If in doubt, stop scraping and move on to the brush. It's very easy to over scrape.
  5. Brush the ski vigorously with a stiff nylon brush until most wax is removed from the ski base surface
  6. Brush the ski gently with a soft metal brush, being careful to only move the brush from tip to tail. 5-6 passes should be good.
  7. Brush the ski moderately with a horsehair brush until all wax is removed from the ski base surface

Structure: Also, if you're going to rill your skis (put structure on the base for warm/wet conditions), after your layers of hot wax but before the Pure Flourocarbon is the time.


Layer 4:
  1. If you have Fast Wax Arctic Flite #11 (or a similar pure Flourocarbon) following are the application steps for that. If you don't have a Flourocarbon, you're ready to race at this point.
  2. Now take the Flourocarbon block or powder and carefully apply a layer on the ski base surface. Just enough so the base is barely but entirely covered with a think layer is all that's necessary.
  3. Using a new cork, that is only used for Flourocarbon Application (not for grip wax), vigorously cork the Flourocarbon in using a lot of pressure and elbow grease. Work this in for a few minutes. You should be out of breath and maybe sweaty if you're doing it right. Think of it as a pre-race warm-up.
  4. Using a new fine nylon polishing brush (or horsehair will do) that is only used for Flourocarbon application, lightly brush the ski using very short, lengthwise, and back and forth motions. Simply work the wax dust around on the ski base. This is called "brushing the wax into the ski base" and actually increases the durability of the application.
  5. After brushing the Flourocarbon into the ski, use the brush to "sweep off" any remaining Flourocarbon dust.
  6. Lastly, take a polishing pad, such as the Fast Wax Speed Block to vigorously polish the ski base.
Lots of steps, but you’ll be ready to ski on rocket fast skis on race day. You'll also notice that the same exact steps apply for each layer of hot wax, so it is relatively simple, just some repetition. Hang on and enjoy the ride, and let us know if you have any further questions!

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