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Surf Wax Techniques & Maintenance

June 13th, 2013

Before hitting the waves this summer or winter, take a look at this surf wax infographic from to know exactly what you need to do for perfect upkeep of your board.

In the early days, surfers used to paint their boards with varnish and scatter sand across it to ensure they wouldn’t slip. This gritty solution wasn’t great and can be painful, leading to an epidemic of wipeouts and board burns. An improvement came by accident in 1935 when L.A. surfer Alfred Gallant Jr. walked through a recently waxed wood floor and found he stuck better than ever to his board.

Surfing would never be the same.

Surfers today wax their boards with two layers of surf wax: base coat and top coat. The base coat glues the board to the top coat and the top coat glues the surfer to his board. Top coat is considerably softer than base coat. It’s made to melt around a rider’s foot and stick into the contours of his or her skin. If a top coat is too soft for the conditions, however, it will begin to degrade. For this reason, top coat surf wax comes in four flavors of hardness: cold, cool, warm and tropical.

Pick the right surf wax and properly maintain your board, and you’ll stay stuck to waves better and longer.

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