Chain Waxing Tutorial

I just realized the UFO is in a spray bottle and you can clean the entire drivetrain before washing the bike with soap and water. That might make things easier actually.

If you’re converting a used bike to hot wax you should definitely get UFO or the stripper to clean off old grease. StripChip is only good for brand new chains with factory grease.

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All my bikes are currently waxed - I was just using the method with crock pots/thermometer, boiling water in pots, mineral spirits/acetone, my own wax mix etc and I am just looking to get away from that to something more streamlined and quicker/simpler.

Waxing really was a chore IMO before so I just bit the bullet and got the silca system and wax and will use mason jars with a electric kettle and some kind of cleaner (or that is the plan).

Old UFO in the black bottle or new UFO in the smaller?

Both… I’ve been using UFO Clean Drivetrain for at least 2 years and have used both.

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Finally got (almost) whole house of chains waxed up after losing my old setup in a flood in 22 (then barely road in 23 so didn’t matter).

I ordered the probably silca waxer mentioned above of amazon and not in love compared to my old hot plate setup, less stink but cranky and slow. At 85C the time to melt is forever and I haven’t done my previously mentioned preheat chain in toaster oven so putting it in basically solidifies all the wax to the chain. 2 nights ago doing the final ones I even had to up the temp to 95C because 20 min later stuff was still solid after putting cold chain in (probably 60F in unfinished part of basement) and waxer was on for nearly an hour. Not sure if this is switching from home brew wax to the silca, the wax pot or what, but the hassle increased significantly during this full setup change.

Need to find Candy thermometer before I do the last one to see what temps really are.

This is also my first batch with the silca stuff and it is WAY WAY WAY stiffer than my home brew (followed old recipe online forget source, friction facts??). I used to just slap the chains on crank them around a bit backwards to fling off the excess and that was fine. Back pedaling is impossible with the freshly waxed chains. Both her bike and my bike that have the new chains on kept throwing the chains pedaling forward even due to the stiffness of them freshly waxed. Guess I’ll need to add in a kneading step although I don’t think that will solve it. The main issues seems to be all our bikes are 1x and they are hanging up on the wide teeth.

I will say the peg board in the workshop area I setup is handy for hanging them to drip into pot, bent up some 308L welding wire for hangers :wink:


It may work okay but it’s definitely not the same.
The Amazon unit is 100ml smaller than the Silca model and according to Josh’s video their unit’s full circumference heater with PID controller is preset to quickly melt Secret Blend in 10-12 minutes. How long does the Amazon unit take?

Volume difference is the Amazon one comes with a little removable insert, the silca does not. Without that in they are the same.

There’s no reason to believe this one isn’t PID, planned to plug in my killawatt to see the draw forgot.

I didn’t time it, longer than my old setup, hour mentioned above was an exaggeration. Will time it when I check with the killawatt.

Edit just opened it up, full circumference heater as well.

edit edit now that I’m at a desk: pic of the heating element.

did some quickie tests last night but it was late and I should have been asleep. It heats up insanely fast if i take out the little pot insert it came with, seconds to operating temp as far as what the sensor is reading. I hadn’t realized that the temp gauge showed actual temp (of the tank not the wax) as it was going up. Since it heats up immediately with no load (wax) on it couldn’t quite tell how it was controlled with the killawatt since it would never actually try to reheat after about a minute. So it would go up to 118ish watts (rated 100, and drew 1 in standby so drawing more than sticker claims) drop to about 90 for a second then like 45 then 2 and hang out there. The way it dropped made it appear to not be just on off t stat controlled but was too fast to see anything else.

I then put the pot in for about a minute and pulled it out and it was still cool to the touch, the airgap between the main tank and the little insert is huge. Will retest when I get a chance time it takes to melt the wax in the little pot, then while hot pour it into tank and retest how long it takes. I have a feeling this will get me 10-12 min range direct in the tank. With some load on it from the wax I should be able to see how the control works better.

If it does the job well enough, you’re all set. But I don’t think they are the same.

I’ll stick with my Walmart crockpot, digital thermometer, and a coat hanger for now.
If I decide to move up one day the Silca solution is a better mousetrap all around.

I’ll 100% give you that Silca might have done some stuff with the controls. it does default to 75 where this is 55, both go to 125.

But if you think they are physically different, that is just crazy. You really think they spent 10s of thousands tooling up plastic molds to make a unit that is 100% identical to something that exists? Same lid, same cord, same shape, same base pattern, even the power buttons are identical on mine (as in amazon sample is outdated).

I LOVE silca, supported their kickstarter back in the day with the t handle thingy, even upgraded to the apron (and was mocked for wearing it the other day while waxing chains/tuning up her bike) countless co2 heads, crack pipes, other misc tools and have a pump. I don’t have a problem with silca possibly branding an existing thing, they added nice features with the hanger stand etc. I probably wouldn’t have spent the money on their waxer even if it was in stock when I needed to get a bunch of chains waxed but I don’t think its bad it exists or that they possibly slapped their name on an existing product.

No clue why you are dead set on proving these units are different, it helps exactly 0 people.

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you can’t be serious

Who cares? Of course, Silca is not going to become a wax pot manufacturer. They are going to find a manufacturer in Asia who can do whatever to their specs.

Nobody calls them out though for blatantly copying Cyclowax. But I guess that is how business works. They found that these guys were getting 219 euros for a $30 wax melting pot so they beat them on price plus Silca already has worldwide distribution.

I believe that Silca measurements are for the box.? Silca rebrands everything. They are a marketing company, not a manufacturing company. I do like their products, but sometimes they pour it on pretty heavy.