I’m always interested in surf history, especially since I really get into surf trivia. I was researching a bit about wax and stumbled across an article that I thought was great.
This surfer was on a quest for Gulf Wax, a pure paraffin wax used primarily in sealing jars for home canning jams and jellies. He used it in his youth (1960’s), and romanticized it as being superior to current surf wax:
smelling like a flower and nipples so sore they feel like they are going to burst into flames.
-Marion Stratford, surfinghandbook.com
I found this to be the ultimate in Surfer Dudeness. It’s like Ron Swanson came to surf.
So, in this spirit, I’m making MANLY Surf Wax! No color, no smell, no frills.
Just like the article stated, the Gulf Wax could be found at the local Publix grocery store. One pound was a little under 4 dollars, and contained 4 one-quarter pound individual bars.
Since paraffin is made with petroleum (never said this recipe was Eco-Friendly, y’all), make sure you use cooking accessories that won’t be used for food prep. Kinda gross. My double boiler in the pic was 6 bucks from Ikea, and I ONLY use it for making wax. Worth it.
We need to make this stuff a bit easier to melt onto the board by just rubbing it on through friction heat. Unlike modern surf wax, we’re not necessarily creating “sticky” bumps, we’re just using it to break the surface tension of the water across the board, and we’ll still need a comb to finish roughing up the wax once it’s applied. To help spread it better, though, I’m going to use a touch of REFINED coconut oil. Since we don’t want any obnoxious smell, the refined is the best option. Unfortunately, I only had hippie “organic.” Sorry, Mr. Swanson.
I also used jumbo muffin cups to pour the wax into. I can’t wait until this “Orange Peel” thing comes out, and I’ll use it instead to make wax.
So I melted down 2 bars of the Gulf Wax (1/2 pound) in the double boiler over a pot of boiling water. DON’T mix any water into the wax or vice-versa!
Once the Gulf Wax had melted, I added a heaping teaspoon of the refined coconut oil.Once I stirred everything well with my dedicated wax chopstick, I continued stirring and heating for a few minutes to make sure everything had homogenized well.
When it was ready, I poured the wax into the muffin foils immediately. This amount used four jumbo sized muffin foils.
I allowed the bars to harden at room temperature. If you stick them in the freezer, voids can form, so I just let them harden and cool for an hour or two on the counter.
It goes on the board well, but this recipe is probably well suited for cool or cold water, especially if sap resin or even a bit of molasses was added. Make sure you use a wax comb to rough up the wax since this wax doesn’t mound up, per se.
Personally, I like the more modern formulations (even with the pretty smell!), but there may be a Manly Surfer Dude in need of a Manly Surf Wax.
You’re welcome, Your Bro-ness.