It’s mesmerizing to watch people skimboarding and wish to enjoy the ride ourselves. It indeed is an enjoyable sport for people who have grown expertise in skimboarding. It’s definitely not an easy job if you’re a beginner. You might face many difficulties if you’re getting started. Skimboarding has many learning points before jumping onto the board. First thing you need to keep in mind before getting your feet on the board is to wax it. When doing skimboarding or riding a new board for the first time, you’ll need to wax your skimboard. You need to wax your board to give it a good grip. Not having a good grip might make your feet slip out of the board and cause unwanted injuries. Creating a good coating of wax on the board will maximize grip. You also don’t want to re-wax the board before every use. So you need to make the coating as good as possible so it lasts for a long time. To make your learning journey easier, we are here with some easy steps to wax a skimboard.
Why should you wax your skimboard?
Once you have the right skimboard, you need to focus on maintaining your skimboard and timely. Waxing your skimboard is one of the most important maintenance factors. Waxing helps with maintaining the skimboard’s durability. It also makes sure you are having a safe ride and enjoying your favourite water sport to the fullest. Wax helps you stick to the skimboard during any form of skimming. You need to follow specific methods for waxing so that you don’t lose your balance and fall off the board. The natural slippery surface of the board is good for riding through the waves but it’s not good for your grip. To make grip you need to create bumps using wax. waxing will give your board a good grip and give you traction to ride the waves. Your feet might slip off your board and onto the sand. It might give you a painful experience if the board is not waxed in the proper way. Two things to keep in mind, maximize grip and ensure not having to wax it on a regular basis.
Necessary Equipment and Products:
To get started with skimboarding, you must wax the board first. To prepare for waxing, we first need to know what things we are going to need to wax a skimboard. Once we have these things ready, we can get started with waxing. Here are the things you are going to need to wax a skimboard:
- Wax for the top coat: The top coat of wax is softer and allows it to be tacky and stick to your feet. Temperature of the water affects the top coats. So you should keep in mind what type of wax you need for the water temperature where you surf. For different water temperatures, wax has different modifications. They use different chemicals for these different modifications. They help in keeping the level of softness of the wax. A tropical temperature wax will be ideal for warm water. A warm wax will freeze up in a cold temperature. But, a cold temperature wax will be too soft when in warm water. Using a tropical weather wax in cold weather but it’s not the same for the other way.
- Wax for the base coat: Base coat is harder than top coat. You should wax the base coat of a skimboard with care. It remains that way until you re-wax your stick. If a patch of base coat rubs off, there will be a constant area without any wax. No point in adding a layer of wax. The base coat creates a bump pattern that lasts for a long time.
- Wax comb: To maintain and remove surfboard wax on a surfboard, you can use a wax comb. Wax combs have features like a jagged or toothed edge and a straight, sharp edge. To create textured grooves for improving the traction of the wax, you need to use the jagged edge. For scraping off unwanted wax you need to use the straight edge.
- Wax cleaner & Paper towels: To put wax on a board with wax, you need to completely get rid of the previous layer of wax. To make it completely gone, you will need some wax cleaner and a few paper towels.
Step-by-step Guide on Waxing Your Skimboard:
Step 1: Get the right temperature surf wax
You need to get started with the right kind of wax. You need to choose the perfect wax from a variety of choices. A cold wax in warmer climates will melt off your board fast and cause a sticky mess. A warm wax in a cold climate will be hard, difficult to apply to your board and won’t provide the best grip. So, you need to choose the right wax for your temperature. You don’t have to be accurate with your wax. If it’s close enough to the ideal one, you are good to go. This way you can choose the right wax for your board based on the season.
Step 2: Get rid of the old wax from the skimboard
If you are using a used board with old wax, you need to peel off the wax first. This is not a hard task but needs lots of patience and time. Here are the steps to remove the wax:
- Leaving the board out in the sun will make the wax very soft and easier to remove. Boiling water can be a great alternative for that. You can still work on removing the wax without doing any of this but things will be harder.
- Using the flat side of the surf comb you need to peel off the old wax from the skimboard. Its built-in fin key is also very helpful. You may press down harder to get rid of as much wax as possible. You may still have some remaining wax on the board. No need to worry about those. We’ll get rid of those in the next step.
- If you still have some wax left on the board, you need to get a wax cleaner and some paper towels to clean them off.
Step 3: Apply a base coat using small circles
Start applying the wax to your board in small circles, using the corner or edge of your wax. It might take a bit for the wax to stick to the board at first. It’ll set after some time. If you get flakes coming off your block of wax, you can either press them into your board or discard them. We don’t want to get huge bumps here. Rather we want a solid base layer that will ensure good grip all over. Make sure to apply wax everywhere you might step on.
Step 4: Apply a top coat using long strokes
After making a solid base coat you should work on building up larger bumps of wax. Building up solid bumps will mean you don’t have to wax your board very often. When you need to do, a quick light wax will be more than enough. Use the flat edge of the wax bar to make long strokes on the board. You can go top to bottom or side to side. Making strokes in all ways will ensure a full coverage. There is no exact size for the bumps. Keep in mind that you can always add more wax later. So, you should stop when you think it looks good.
Step 5: Top up only as required
If you’ve waxed your skimboard in the beginning then you don’t need to worry about wax for a long time. You need to change the coating if the coat falls off or you see your board is no longer gripping as well as you would like. This type of situation raises the need to add some wax or completely re-wax your board. But you should not change the wax. No need to change the wax every time before you are going for a skimboarding session.
Things To Remember While Waxing Your Skimboard:
Waxing becomes easier with time. After waxing your boards a few times, you’ll get an idea about it. Here are few things you need to remember for making your first waxing experience less messy:
- To remove old wax, leave it in the sun for a bit. If you don’t have the time to leave it in the sun, you may use a hair dryer to soften the wax.
- As the base coat wax is harder, it lasts for a long time but you need to put pressure on it to get your work done faster. Giving a lighter push will result in a long working time.
- You should start from the pointed edge of the bar. It will make it easier for the wax to chump off.
- It’s not recommended to use candle wax on a skimboard. It’s much too hard and is slipperier than available surf wax.
Common troubles and Their Quick Fixes:
- What to do if the wax is too soft?
Answer: You need to find the right kind of wax based on the temperature of the water. You can check the table and buy the perfect kind of wax depending on the water temperature.
|Wax Type||Water Temperature|
|Cold Water Wax||<60ºF (<15ºC)|
|Cool Water Wax||58-66ºF (14-19ºC)|
|Warm Water Wax||64-74ºF (17-24ºC)|
|Tropical Water Wax||>75ºF (>24ºC)|
You are good to use the types of waxes with close enough temperature labels. Remember, if you use a cold temperature wax in warm water, it will be very soft.
- Which side of the board should I wax?
Answer: You need to wax the top side of the skimboard. Waxing the bottom side won’t speed up the ride. Rather, it would do the opposite.
- What to do if I’ve overused wax on the board?
Answer: If you use too much wax on a skimboard, it will make skimboarding harder for you. You need to get rid of the extra layer of wax before riding the board.
- What to do if wax rubs off from the base coat?
Answer: Get rid of the old layer of wax and re-wax it.
So you have learned how to apply wax on your skimboard. Now you are good to go for your first attempt following the easiest steps mentioned above. With more and more practice, soon you’ll be on your way to becoming a pro! In case you’re rewaxing a board with old wax, don’t forget to take necessary steps before reapplying the new coat of wax. Check if you need to scrape off the old wax and use the right application methods to do it. You have all the information you need, it’s time to head to the beach or your preferred water body to ride on the waves!