When I immersed myself deeper into surfing, another thing I discovered is how surfboards needed to be waxed too. I found this a little amusing because I couldn’t help but think about how analogous it was to waxing the floors (and about the hundred times I’ve literally fallen victim to newly-waxed floors), but, no waxing your surfboard is very different from the waxing I know.
Surfboard wax is necessary for most surfboards. It provides you traction and grip to your surfboard. If you are not familiar with surfing, without traction and grip, your riding experience will no longer be surfing, but walking on ice. To make sure that you don’t experience this, let me teach you how to wax a surfboard.
Before you start this process, you need to make sure that you have a base coat wax, a top coat wax, a wax remover, a wax comb, and a wax remover. These things are all easy to find and non-optional
This step you can skip if you are waxing a new surfboard, but if not, read on.
Now, you cannot simply apply another layer of wax right away. You have to clean your surfboard thoroughly, remove any dirt, debris, or remnants of the previously applied wax to make sure that the layer you are about to apply will stick properly.
To clean your surfboard thoroughly, scrape off all the wax on your surfboard with the straight portion of your wax comb. I find this process can be made easier if the surfboard is left under the sun for a little bit to melt the wax. Do not just focus on the surfboard, but also on the deck, the rails, the nose, and the tail. You can clean these parts with the flat and curve parts of the wax comb.
However, using a waxing comb may not be enough to completely get rid of the old wax, so you can use a wax remover. Pour an ample amount of wax cleaner on your rag and wipe the areas that need more attention. After you have completely removed the wax, rinse your surfboard with water.
A professional surfer told me that applying the base coat is the most important part of waxing a surfboard. See, the top coat will most likely get washed off, but the base coat will stay. Once the base coat comes off on a certain part of your surfboard, you will feel that (and mind you, it will feel weird because of that patch that feels different from the larger part of your surfboard) and even if you apply more top coat, it will just be washed off.
The base coat wax is a harder kind of wax than the top coat, making it more difficult to apply. It is also supposed to last longer than the top coat, provided that you apply it properly. Make broad strokes. You need to apply this by pushing down with force because of its composition. Keep doing it until you see a bump pattern appear. There are many different ways to apply wax, but you should do it the way you the way you find most comfortable.
Now, the top coat is a little easier to apply because it is much softer than your base coat wax. This will feel tacky and sticky to your feet. Top coats are more affected by the water temperature than your base coat, so you want to know the temperature of the water where you will be surfing and decide what kind of top coat you will be using. Don’t worry because it is usually indicated on the wax where it is best used for. Apply it the same way you applied the base coat, only with lesser force.
Every time you surf, a part of the top coat will flake off. To make up for this, you need to add a little bit of wax each time you get in the water, but really, it is up to you.
May this guide on how to wax a surfboard be of great help!
I suppose you could say I came to surfing later than most. I didn't grow up by the water, but after years working the 9-5 grind I felt its draw and decided it was time to lead a slower life. These days I try and spend time in the water every day and consider the ocean as my living room: a place to relax, have fun, and just enjoy life.