Best Way to Wax a Surfboard

The following are the steps for the greatest surfboard wax job possible.

Step 1:

If you want the best wax job you must remove all your old wax.  For a perfect wax job, you want to start with a sleek and virgin board.

If you’ve got a new board, skip to step 2

To get your old surf wax off your board listen closely:

The first step to getting rid of that old wax is to scrape it off.

Use a credit card or a surf comb to get the majority of the wax off. The credit card isn’t as good as the surf comb, but it will do the job fine.  Surf combs are available at all surf shops or you can get one by clicking this link.

Don’t use any too with a sharp corner or that is made of metal metal.  These can damage the finish of your surfboard accidentally while you scrape your surfwax off.

There are many ways to take the last remnants of your wax off the board.  You can use hot water and a towel to rub the wax off.  This can cause burns and it takes a long time.  You can use chemicals from the local hardware store but you might end up high on fumes or get yourself a cool chemical burn.  The old guys just rub their boards with sand from the beach.  Sand rubbing is the most cave-manlike style.  All of these options are fine, but they aren’t the best.

The guys who developed the pickle did a great job.  You can get a pickle at a local surf shop (To order on Amazon click here: Pickle wax remover.)

The Pickle is made in Hawaii from recycled products so you can feel good about grabbing your pickle.

Don’t forget to use the pickle to clean up the bottom of your board.  No one wants anything but a super slick bottom for their surf board.  If you get wax on the bottom (fin side) side of your board, you call this a “chinese surfwax job.”  You don’t want a “chinese surfwax job.”

Now that you have a sleek clean board, it’s time to put new wax on.

Step 2:

First you want to use a base coat surf wax
.  Base wax is more dense and performs better as a connector to your board.

First apply your base coat surf wax in a strong cross hatching pattern.  Use a pattern that is reminiscent to the steel stamp pattern on your dad’s tool box.

I like to cover everywhere from the tip of the board to the traction pad on the tail of your board.  Even when I’m surfing big waves on a short board, I still find myself moving my feet around and needing traction over the whole board.  If you don’t think you’ll ever put your feet near the nose, then don’t worry about it.  Just wax where you will need traction.

Once you get your base wax crosshatch pattern applied to all the parts of the board that you need traction, you want to just rub the square end across the whole area that you have crosshatched.  This will cause the wax to fill in the spaces between your cross hatching.  When finishing you want a consistent pattern of ridges and valleys of well measured wax on the area of the surfboard you will come in contact with.

Once you have that done, you’re ready for the finishing surfboard wax step.

Step 3:

You must choose your finishing wax based upon the temperature of the water you plan to surf in.  Below is a temperature guide:

Cold Water Surfboard Wax = Water that is less than 60 F (15.5 C)

Cool Water Surfboard Wax = Water that is between 60 F (15.5 C) and 68 F (20 C)

Warm Water Surfboard Wax = Water that is between 64 F (17.75 C) and 75 (24 C)

Tropical Water Surfboard Wax = Water that is warmer than 70 (21 C)

If you find yourself on the boarder of water temperature, go with the colder water wax.  It’s better to error on the side of cooler water wax.  Warmer water wax gets really stiff and loses its traction with colder water.  It’s better to error towards the colder conditions.

To apply this finishing coat you just want to firmly and evenly push the wax across the whole base wax coat on your surfboard.  With a good base coat, you won’t need to put too much elbow grease into it.

Try to slide your finger tips across the face of the board after your finishing wax job.  You’ll feel more confident knowing how grippy you have made your board.

Go surfing.  Above all, go surfing.

Mahalo for reading.  I’ll have more content up in the near future…


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