Toko Newsletter

FasterSkierDecember 22, 20094

XCold Application

XCold powder is one of Toko’s standout products. It really is an essential part of any competitive skier’s wax box. Here is information on when and how to use it:

XCold is not just a hardener. It has a special function. It makes the skis dramatically more slippery at slower speeds (in other words, they acelerate starting from a slower speed). The term that I like to use for this is that it improves the breakaway speed. For this reason, XCold is really important when conditions are slow such as very slow squeaky snow or slow freshly shot manmade snow.

You can apply it two ways. The most common way is to mix it with LF or HF Blue. The glide layer before this layer should have been a layer of Blue to harden up the base. Apply your Blue/XCold layer by dripping the blue on the ski (not too much, you need to leave room for the XCold). Then shake the XCold powder on the ski so you have about as much as the Blue. Then heat them in together, let cool, scrape, and brush. Some like to heat the Blue in first and then apply the XCold. I find that if this is done, the XCold stays on top and doesn’t make it into the wax job.

Otherwise, in extremely slow cold snow, the XCold can be applied on top of the Blue as a separate layer. Simply shake the XCold on, heat it in, let cool, scrape, and brush. This is not as good as the Blue/XCold mix though except for in the coldest/slowest conditions.

If it is cold and fast, don’t bother with the XCold, just go with the HF Blue followed by JetStream Blue.

Toko US Blog Header -

The Toko US Nordic Blog is now hopping along pretty well now with a lot of interesting entries. The latest one is from 12 time US National champion John Bauer on technique. Check it out!

Hot boxes are generally used to get soft glide waxes such as yellow deep into the base. Once this has been accomplished, it is important to wax the ski with a hard wax such as blue to harden it up. Otherwise the base will be so soft, it will be white after just a few kms in cold snow.

Hot Boxing

Here’s how to use the hot box to get good penetration:

1. Wax the skis with a soft wax such as System 3 yellow.

2. Put the skis in the hot box at 62C for 6-8 hours.

3. Let cool completely. Scrape and brush.

4. Iron in System 3 blue, cool, scrape, brush, and repeat.

5. Wax with the wax of the day.

For more complete information click HERE.

Toko Research and Development Presentation

Click HERE to see a presentation on Toko Research and Development

This Weekend’s Race Wax Recommendations

We are not going to be able to email out the race wax recommendations for this weekend like we usually do. They can always be found at


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  • OldManWinter

    December 22, 2009 at 1:58 pm

    143 degrees F to melt a yellow wax? Better your skis than mine. Personally, I am not aware of any ski service that runs a hot box > 60C for fear of ski damage. In my unit, I can reliably keep CH10 molten at 117F, and completely liquid at 120F.

  • ianharvey

    December 22, 2009 at 3:16 pm

    The purpose is not simply to “melt yellow wax” as you put it. The ski needs to heat up enough for the base to expand so the wax has somewhere to go. The warmer the ski base, the more wax goes into it. Warmth of the ski base is a function of time and temperature not just temperature. 6-8 hours at 62c has shown to do no damage to skis at all unless you are using a box with poor air circulation inside as then you get hot spots. A ventilator of some kind is necessary.

    In responding, my goal isn’t to debate. I’m responding so others aren’t lead astray by your remarks.

  • OldManWinter

    December 22, 2009 at 4:19 pm

    Ian – Np, we can disagree without being disagreeable. I will concur that the wax needs somewhere to go, but from my experience the base doesn’t need to be in a 143F chamber for it to get there. Two days ago, the bases of a pair of my test skis peeled away at temps below that. Sure, they were foam-core rock skis, but given that experience I’m surely not running the family’s Madshus thru at that temp anytime soon. Each of the local hotbox services has a disclaimer connected with their service; presumably for a good reason. The problem is that if a ski delaminates you might not realize it right away, and these things never fail near the parking lot. The internet is loaded with horror stories of this nature. Caveat emptor, and thanks for the 2nd opinion but I’m still keeping my temperature setting where it’s at.

  • ianharvey

    December 23, 2009 at 10:39 am

    I don’t know of a single pair of skis that has been damaged in a good hotbox (read: with ventilation and an accurate thermostat or temperature read) at 62C for 6-8 hours. Let’s use a manufacturers Thermo Bag (there are a few that make them) and not a home made box. Is there anyone who has damaged a ski in this situation? Again, NOT a homemade box, but a professional grade box. I myself have done every brand of ski and very many times. At longer times and/or hotter temps, we damaged a ton of old skis and test skis (mine). I don’t know of a single pair damaged at 62C.

    A prominent waxer in North America was strongly advocating far cooler temperatures some time ago. He wrote to me and told me he was getting good results with his apparatus and with temps more like warm than hot. I told him that the wax couldn’t be going in the base at those temps. He disagreed and said that it had been. Later I got an email from him that his homemade box had completely wrong temperature readings and his temps were very close to mine. I think this is what started the “cold” hot box movement although he was using temps similar to mine the whole time. Now I know there are others who use a colder box, but it makes no sense. It all came from this other guy who was using a “hot” hot box the whole time.

    Have a good one in any case,

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