Intro: How to Wax a Snowboard
Snowboarding is one of the most popular sports in many countries. Similar to making an oil change on a car, we also need to wax our snowboards. The reason a snowboard can slide on snow smoothly is that there is enough wax on the bottom of the snowboard. Wax can reduce the friction force between the snowboard and ground. Generally speaking, after several times of snowboarding, the wax will be used up and we need to replenish it with new wax.
Step 1: Get a Snowboard Wax Kit
In order to wax a snowboard, we need to get a snowboard wax kit, which usually includes an iron, a piece of wax, and a plastic scraper. These are all tools we need to wax a snowboard.
Step 2: Clean the Snowboard Base
First of all, we need to clean the snowboard base. There are always many contaminants on the ground and sometimes they will adhere to the snowboard. After snowboarding several times, there will definitely be some dirt on the snowboard base. It’s important to get rid of this dirt and old wax before putting new wax on, because wax will not adhere to dirty base. At this time, we can lean the snowboard on the wall and use a plastic scraper to scrape from top to bottom. Some people may worry that the plastic scraper will damage the snowboard. In fact, a snowboard base is tough enough to endure the scratch but you really have to put enough force to scratch the wax out of the snowboard. When you scratch the snowboard, you can see old wax and dirt coming out of snowboard base. After scratching, if you touch the base, you will feel that it became smoother. When you finish scratching, spread water on the snowboard base and use a paper towel to wipe it. In addition to this, sharpening the edges is also necessary. We should use the scratcher to scratch and sharpen the edges. Sharp edges are really helpful for snowboarders to make a turn or curve.
Step 3: Spread Water
Step 4: Melt the Wax Bar
After cleaning the snowboard, we need to heat it to room temperature. The appropriate temperature will accelerate the absorption of wax. We can use a heat gun or dryer to heat the snowboard base. Moreover, if you take bindings out, it will be easier to heat.
After cleaning the snowboard, we can start applying wax to the snowboard. A ventilated room is the best choice because it can dry the snowboard immediately. Place the snowboard on a flat surface like tables or chairs. Plug
in the iron and wait until it gets hot. Adjust the iron temperature to medium hot to avoid creating smoke. If the iron gets too hot, it will damage the surface of the snowboard and even hurt you. Sometimes you can get information
about the right temperature from the box of wax. Use an iron to heat the wax bar and melt it so it drops on the snowboard. Basically, you have to put wax all over the base. However, don’t put too much wax on snowboard because it will be difficult to clean afterword.
Step 5: Spread the Wax
The next step is using the iron to spread out the wax from top to bottom before it gets cold. It’s a good idea to concentrate on one small area and wax back and forth, from tip to tail. After doing that 3-5 times, you can move to the next area. Make sure that the wax melts all the way on the snowboard and accumulates a layer of wax. Heating and spreading the wax will help it to saturate into the snowboard base. This step takes a really long time and you need to be patient. When you are using the iron, you need to be careful because it’s very hot and dangerous. Therefore, when you finish using the iron, put it standing up and unplug it for safety.
Step 6: Scratch the Base
After 20-30 minutes, the snowboard will become cold and we can begin scarping. We don’t start scarping when the snowboard is still hot because the wax is not saturated thoroughly. Due to the fact that the wax we put on the board is not equally distributed enough, we need to scratch the base and make it smoother. Scrape the edges again because the wax might adhere to the edges. Some scrapers have a notch, which you can use to clean the wax from the edges and sharpen the edges. This is a necessary step because if you don’t clean up the edges, the wax on them may make the snowboard get stuck in the snow and even put you in danger. Then, use a plastic scraper to scratch the base from bottom to top to remove the excess wax. When you come to one end of the snowboard, put the scraper at a 45 degree angle and it will be easier for you to scratch. It’s important that you get
all of the extra wax from the base. The purpose of scratching after waxing is to make your snowboard smoother. Go back and forth for 3-4 times to make sure you get rid of all of the extra wax. After you finish scratching from tip and tail, you should continue to scratch the middle part of the snowboard. If you are doing it the right way, you will feel that it will become easier and easier because the base of snowboard is becoming more smooth.
Step 7: Scrape the Edges
Step 8: Buff the Base
The last step we need to do is buffing the base with a stiff nylon brush. Buff the base lightly to clean the scratched wax and dust from the base. Always buff the snowboard in one direction from tip to tail. Then, you can use a scratching pad, which is tougher material than the brush, to scratch the base once again in order to make the snowboard shine. When you finish buffing, your snowboard is ready for use.
Step 9: Finish Waxing
Waxing snowboards is necessary for every snowboarder, especially those who are interested in doing snowboarding tricks. When you practice tricks on boxes or rails, your snowboard will become worn and the wax on the snowboard will decrease much faster than normal. Waxing your snowboard frequently is beneficial for snowboarding and it will make your snowboarding activities more enjoyable.