Why would I use paraffin wax instead of oil?
The application of paraffin wax has been performed for years, as it is believed to reduce friction in the drive-train, making for a smoother and faster ride. Paraffin wax is also less sticky and so doesn’t attract and hold onto as much grit and grime as oil does. This means your silver bits stay sparkling (and smooth) for longer. Not to mention the fact that oil-based products themselves are messy and dirty, making for black fingerprints all over the house, face and cat.
Isn’t it really faffy to apply?
By the original method, yes. It involves melting paraffin wax on the stove or in a crock pot (which can be pretty dangerous) and dipping your chain (that you had to remove from the bike and clean to sparkling status OR buy brand new) into the boiling hot liquid. You then have to leave it for a nice soak for around 20 minutes, before hanging it to dry (for another 20 minutes) … by which time the sun’s gone in and you’ve missed your chance to ride!
Wend Wax On comes in a format very similar in look and texture to a deodorant stick. After cleaning your chain (or buying a brand spanking new one), you just turn your pedal, hold the wax stick against the different edges of the chain to ensure a nice even coverage. To work in the wax to every nook and cranny, you just rub it in with your finger. The Wend Instagram page has LOADS of awesome videos showing just how easy it is.
Urgh, but, cleaning my chain is a faff too.
Unless your chain is completely ruined after a winter of riding thousands of km, the Wax Off formula will be able to get your chain as clean as it needs to be to apply the Wax On. Run the chain through a towel with a few drops of Wax Off on it and you’ll be good to go. If your chain is looking a bit worse for wear, we’d suggest getting a new one and starting afresh. Once you go Wax, you’ll never go… back…
How long will it last?
Here at Jam Cycling, we’ve experienced about 300-400km in dry conditions. We found that after being caught in a heavy downpour we needed to do a quick top up. However, as each person’s drive-train is different (due to different combos of chains and chain rings etc.), and everyone rides in different conditions at different intensities, we’ll all experience varying levels of wear. So, there’s no set answer.
What we can tell you is that your Wend Waxed chain will be silky smooth and silent, and you’ll know when to apply more, because you’ll start to be able to hear it.
How good is Wend in wet conditions?
The people at Wend, over in California, are lucky enough to spend their days basking in glorious sunshine. But we’re not so lucky! So, we’ve been testing the wax since February in the lovely English climate and have found the following:
Optimise Wend application by massaging the wax all over the chain and finishing by adding a touch of Wax-Off to melt it into all the nooks and crannies.
After being caught in a real downpour, a quick re-application of Wax-On will help keep your drivetrain running smoothly.