We have lots of new products, from many formulas of new fluoro-free topcoats (available next year) to new High Performance hot waxes and liquid paraffins. I/we need to learn what runs when and what is the best way to apply these waxes in any given condition.
Testing new Toko fluoro-free top coats that will be available next year
Here is the progression that I am doing in my testing.
I first tested the new fluoro-free topcoats against each other and against JetStream Blue and straight performance hot waxes. This is now done. They did very well and I’ve ordered some of one of the many (12) formulas for US nationals. In the cold fast Soldier Hollow snow at least the new fluor-free topcoats outperformed JetStream Blue (ironed on).
I'm now testing High Performance hot wax vs. High Performance liquid with High Performance hot wax underneath. This is pure wax testing so I can see what is fastest where in a traditional wax test. I'm using the High Performance Liquid Paraffins (HPLP) application that I know it works well – spray on and let it sit for a day and then polish brush it.
The next phase will be testing application methods of HPLP. I will test the following different application methods:
For sure letting it sit overnight after one application and then polish brushing it is the standard.
I think there is some compromise in letting it sit 10 minutes, then roto with the Merino Roller and then skiing on it, or doing it again and then skiing on it. I have found it to be similar in some conditions and slower in others. Others have found it to be as good but I don’t buy it yet… Thus far I have not found a benefit in doing layers.
There are other liquid paraffin products on the market that use other materials in them. The Toko products and these products are not the same at all despite all being liquid paraffins. For example I know that the merino roller improves performance with most liquid paraffins out there. But the Toko Liquid Paraffin particle size is so small (smaller than others) that the heat generated by the merino roller has little effect. With the others, the heat that the Merino Roller generates makes the particle size smaller thus improving performance. I think this is why using the Merino Roller doesn't appear to have a big effect on performance with the Toko Liquid Paraffins compared to others. That said, the Merino Roller might provide a quicker drying option with the Toko HPLP with similar performance. That's what I am hoping for in my testing but have not found yet exactly. (In wetter snow yes, but not in dry cold snow or especially not in dry new fallen snow).
Other liquid paraffins have acetone and other famously harsh chemicals in them. Why did we abandon fluorine again? I am totally OK if we need to wait longer for our liquid paraffins to dry because we are not working with such chemicals. Our performance is very good/the best out there so the compromise is not in performance just in drying time.
In addition to letting the Liquid Paraffin in blue or red sit overnight and then brush out, we also know quite a bit about using Toko Liquid Paraffin in wet conditions: More layers are better. Our recommendation is to apply the Liquid Paraffin yellow and let it sit for a long time and brush it out. Then before the event you can do another application and send the skis out wet. This works extremely well for non-fluorine sprint events! Reapply for each round brushing after the round and before the reapplication.
I am not able to ski this winter due to a back injury. It’s been painful and frustrating, but otherwise things are going well. I have some great local testers though luckily. It is also not just me doing this testing but other Toko Tech Team members throughout the USA. Obviously there is lots going on in Europe and I am getting that information too.
So, this is one of the things that we have going on! More information to come!