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DPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Wax System Overview: Superior in All Ways

DPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Base Glide System // Ski Technology

Waxing skis. It takes time, it costs money, it's not exactly good for the environment, yet it's pretty important to ski performance. If you've ever skied on a warm, wet day with dry, un-waxed bases, you know how challenging it can be when your skis are sticking to the snow surface. Last season, DPS announced their new Phantom Permanent Waxless Glide. This patent-pending technology is a permanent solution to waxing your skis. Think about that for a second. You apply this stuff once and you never have to think about it again over the lifetime of your skis. That's pretty crazy. No more worrying if you got the wax right, no more burning yourself on the iron (maybe it's just me that does that a lot), no more trips to the local ski shop for a last-minute wax. DPS Phantom is applied once, works in all conditions, and you never have to even think about waxing if you don't want to.

After an additional year of R&D, DPS has presented us with Phantom 2.0. This marks improvements over the original version both in the application process and in its performance on snow. We're lucky to be on of the first e-commerce businesses to be able to offer Phantom 2.0, and it's more than just the ability to buy it from us. We are now fully setup as an official Phantom 2.0 curing station and can apply Phantom to your new skis before it ships to your door!

DPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Base Glide System: Superior in All Ways : Product Image


Recently, DPS took some time to walk us through the application process. If you're interested in seeing the full process, watch the video that's embedded on this article, but let's touch on the key aspects of Phantom 2.0 and how it's applied. Think about a typical ski wax. It's mostly a topical application. Yes, the wax is getting absorbed into the pores of your ski, but it's still relatively easy for that wax to wear off. You've probably seen your bases start to get a little bit white in spots, usually along the edges. This happens as your wax wears off, and your bases become dehydrated. Phantom 2.0 is a completely different concept. It uses a specifically-engineered, timed polymerization process that permanently penetrates the entire base of your skis through a chemical bonding process. Sounds pretty technical, huh? That's because it is. This is a highly scientific process.

Really Cool DPS Phantom GIF Image

The application process for Phantom 2.0 is split into Part A and Part B, which both require a soak-in period and a cure period. The curing process, under UV light, is what's triggering the chemical bonding process that makes it a permanent application to your skis. First, you must make sure you're working with a super-clean ski base. There should be no existing wax on your skis. The ideal method here is roto-brushing your skis clean. You can use a base-cleaner solvent, but it's not ideal as the cleaner can remain on the ski and should not be mixed with Phantom 2.0. Starting with a clean base you apply .5 mL of Part A to each ski. After spreading Part A over the running length of your skis, you start a 15 minute soak-in process. It doesn't matter if the Part A is on for longer than 15 minutes, but it needs to be at least 15 minutes. After this soak-in period, you remove any excess liquid from the base of the ski and then you're ready for 20 minutes of curing. After curing, it's time to roto-brush again to remove the remaining material from the ski, which should have dried into a white-ish material. After another round of roto-brushing, you apply part B in the same method as part A. Another round of soak-in, another round of curing, another round of roto-brushing, and you're good to go! Your skis will never need to be waxed ever again.

Now, this process can be done at home if you're the DIY type of person. It does, however, need full, consistent sunlight, as well as relatively warm weather to achieve the best results. So, winter isn't the best time to be doing it because the temperatures are too low and the sun isn't at its highest. If you're at all on the fence about whether or not you should do it yourself, we highly recommend having SkiEssentials.com apply your Phantom 2.0 before shipping. We are fully trained and set up with all the right tools, an official DPS curing station, and are more than happy to take care of your skis.

DPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Base Glide System: Superior in All Ways : Lit Unit ImageDPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Base Glide System: Superior in All Ways : DPS Phantom 2 Grid Image 1DPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Base Glide System: Superior in All Ways : DPS Phantom 2 Grid Image 2

So that's the theory behind DPS Phantom 2.0 and how its applied, but what about actual performance? Luckily we've had a relatively cold October here in Vermont, and we've already had the chance to test DPS Phantom 2.0 on snow down at Killington. In fact, we took the same pair of skis that you can see us curing in the video on this article. Being able to see the full application process, slap some demo bindings on the skis, and get them on snow all within about 48 hours was a really fun, rewarding process. Also, we're happy to report that this stuff really works. Yeah, we know, you're a bit skeptical. We would be lying if we said we weren't initially a little skeptical too. After about a year of hearing about it, and then getting to put it to the test ourselves, we've fully convinced. The best thing about testing DPS Phantom 2.0 in early season conditions is we got to test it on a lot of different types of snow. We had some fresh man-made snow, some re-frozen crud, some icy spots, and some fresh snow falling from the sky that was on the wet side. This really provided a good testing arena for Phantom 2.0, and we were pretty blown away. DPS claims that Phantom 2.0 works in all different types of snow conditions and temperatures, which is quite the claim. Traditionally high-end wax is focused on a specific snow temperature. Phantom worked perfectly in all the conditions we tested it in. We had heard rumors that it can feel sticky at slower speeds, like when you're shuffling through the lift line, but we didn't actually feel that at all. We also got to compare it against a brand new ski with factory wax on it, and the Phantom 2.0 ski definitely had superior glide.

High tier athletes, especially ski racers, may still choose to use a traditional high fluorocarbon wax on top of the Phantom 2.0. That's perfectly acceptable, and a high-end wax treatment like that will still add a little bit of extra glide for someone in a race course, but for most skiers, including all of our staff, the Phantom 2.0 is all you really need. If you are one of those top-tier ski racers, you'll be happy to know that Phantom 2.0 actually retains additional wax treatments 30% longer than a non-treated base. It's impressive stuff to say the least. Say you're racing on a particularly wet, warm day. Throw on some high-temp HF wax and it's going to last a few extra gates in a race course. That can go a long way.

Let's talk about the environment. As we touched on before, waxing skis isn't exactly good for the environment. As the wax wears off your skis, it stays on the snow. As the snow melts, your wax goes with it into streams, rivers, lakes, the ocean, etc. We hypothesized the other day that Lake Champlain must be coated with ski wax. While that sounds silly, there's some amount of truth to it. Because DPS Phantom 2.0 is saturated into the actual base of the ski and chemically bonded to it, there is no wearing off. While it's still using fluorocarbon functional groups, the application method renders them inert and harmless to biologically life. We like that a lot, and you should to. After all, we only have one earth. While skiing fast is a lot of fun, it's probably not worth putting a bunch of harmful fluorocarbons into our water supply.

We'll continue to test Phantom 2.0 throughout the season. If anything changes, you'll be the first to know. For now, we'll leave you with the fact that we're so impressed with it, the vast majority of our staff will be treating our skis with Phantom 2.0 this season. Heck, I'm going to do four different pairs. Am I bummed that my waxing iron will be spending most of the season in the closet? You know… not really…

DPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Base Glide System: Superior in All Ways : Buy Now Image


Written by Jeff Neagle on 11/01/18

30 thoughts on “DPS Phantom 2.0 Permanent Wax System Overview: Superior in All Ways

  1. Hi SE - Hats off to DPS for developing this product. It certainly has the potential to make traditional wax obsolete. Love what it does for our environment. From a retail standpoint, this serves the purpose of adding value to the products (skis) that you are currently selling. That is always a good thing. I can see having "Phantom Month" where all ski purchases during that time receive a free or discounted Phantom treatment, assuming, of course, that it makes financial sense..
    Good for you (SE) for leading the way on the revolutionary product.

  2. "While it's still using fluorocarbon functional groups, the application method renders them inert and harmless to biologically life. We like that a lot, and you should to. After all, we only have one earth. While skiing fast is a lot of fun, it's probably not worth putting a bunch of harmful fluorocarbons into our water supply."

    Do you have scientific proof of that? Flurocarbons are the worst envrionmental toxics in todays society. Me personally, I would never use fluorocarbons in any field of application, having a professional background in environmental water management in the City of Stockholm, Sweden.

    Best Regards
    Ulf Mohlander

    1. Hi Scott!

      I think that's a fantastic idea, the Phantom Month! We'll have to consider doing something along those lines...

      SE

      1. Hi Ulf!

        We totally understand your concerns. While we don't have any first hand scientific proof, DPS has done extensive R&D on this product and we are certain their environmental claims are backed by data. They're putting a lot of emphasis on the environmentally friendly aspect of the product. I think it's undeniably better than traditional fluorocarbon based wax, and we fully trust DPS as a company.

        SE

  3. Dear SkiEssentials,

    I am sharing same concerns as Ulf Mohlander. Are these PFAS replacement chemicals DPS is using really environmental friendly? As a researcher with focus on PFAS in the environment our studies show the omnipresence of many different PFAS compounds in the environment. Previous studies regarding PFAS in ski waxes have shown a presence of many different PFAS with a great variation in chain-lengths and non of these PFAS were or are environmental friendly. In the answer you mention that "DPS has done extensive R&D on this product and we are certain their environmental claims are backed by data" and that DPS has a great emphasis regarding the environmentally friendly aspect of the product. However most of the novel studies show that novel PFAS replacement chemicals such as GenX or other similar chemical compounds with an oxygen instead of carbon in the carbon backbone have shown same persistency in the environment as PFOS or PFOA. DPS are maybe using some shorter chain PFAS in their products, however these are not environmental friendly either.

    New regulations from the Swedish Chemical Agency will require all producers to register PFAS chemicals in their products if they have added PFAS as a component in products. https://www.kemi.se/nyheter-fran-kemikalieinspektionen/2018/kemikalieinspektionen-infor-krav-pa-att-anmala-pfas-amnen-till-produktregistret/

    I think the use of fluorocarbons (PFAS) in products such as ski-waxes should be of a concern as the novel replacement compounds are not really environmental friendly. There is no scientific studies up to date that states the environmental friendliness of PFAS in products.

    Kind Regards,

    Marko Filipovic Ph.D.

    1. Hi Marko!

      You and Ulf both bring up some really solid concerns about the product. I've emailed your comment directly to DPS as I'm hoping we can get a straight answer from their engineers and scientists.

      Thanks!

      SE

  4. Interesting. Suggestions for post DPS application ski servicing for the duration of the life of the skis, sharpening specifically? Gouges etc?

    1. Hi JK!

      Overall you should handle maintenance and tuning the same way you would without Phantom. Same amount of edge sharpening, stone grinds, etc. If you get a really big gouge in your ski, like a long core shot, DPS recommends reapplying Phantom to just that one particular spot, but it's really only if you have to add a bunch of new P-Tex to your skis.

      Hope that answers your question!

      SE

  5. Is this suitable for nordic skis as well as alpine? And is it appropriate for "waxless" nordic skis, for a little extra glide? Or is this intended for alpine equipment?

    1. Good question, Tamara!
      The Phantom 2.0 treatment does not work on extruded bases like your waxless nordic skis. In its current form, it only works on sintered bases found on alpine and high-end, stiff skate skis. Hope that helps!

      SE

    1. Hey Dwight!

      In theory, yes, but we're still figuring out how to handle the extra shipping costs, etc. I'll get in touch with you when we have a better sense of what it would take.

      SE

      1. Hi Paul!

        It's typically going to cost $150 for us to apply Phantom, but right now we are running a preliminary special for $125. Give our customer service guys a call if you're interested!

        SE

  6. In response to Ulf & Marko regarding the environmental friendliness of this product we should consider that there will (should) be no "shedding" of this material onto the snow as it is bonded into the PTEX. That's a lot more friendly than the 1 or so grams of fluoro I leave behind on the snow every time I go skiing. This leaves only the waste left on the application rags and such which will ultimately contaminate a landfill.
    I wish I knew about you guys doing this back a couple months ago when I ordered a pair of new skis from you. Could have had this done.

    GO FAST!

    1. Hi Krista!

      There's no wax repair kit, and core shots or other minor base damage will not really affect the ski as a whole, only the damaged area. I can't imagine this will make a huge difference in the overall glide of the ski. Hope that helps!

      SE

    1. Hi Patrick!

      Because the Phantom saturates the entire base, you can grind your skis without needing to reapply. It's really just exposing new material, but that material has been cured with Phantom; your whole base has.

      SE

  7. 'can you apply regular wax over this stuff? What is the gurantee on this? If we aren't satisfied with performance? Sierra cement is sticky!

    1. Hi Mie!

      Yes, one of the best parts is that you can still apply normal wax over it. So if you really want to dial in specific temps, you can. There's no formal guarantee, but we've been really happy with the performance of it. If we weren't confident in it, we wouldn't offer it. If you get some from us and aren't happy with its performance, definitely get in touch with us and we'll talk it over.

      SE

  8. Well into the ski season do you still like this product? Are any ski manufacturers building this into new skis?
    Thanks,
    John

    1. Hi John!
      Not yet. The DPS representative told us that they could see it happening, but probably not for a few years. It would have to be done at the manufacturing level, so I'd imagine that will take some time.
      Everyone who is on it seems to like it. I have one pair Phantomed and one not, and the not Phantomed skis are getting a bit fuzzy in the base (I don't really wax), while the treated skis are still shiny and new looking. It definitely alters the base, so there is something to it. I'll know better this spring on warm and sticky days. Hope that helps!
      SE

  9. For skis that have been treated, would you recommend applying a layer of summer wax during the offseason? Or does Phantom also eliminate the need for that?

    1. Hi Ibc!
      It certainly won't hurt. What I've noticed with my skis, I have one pair treated and one pair untreated, and the bases of the untreated skis (which I have not waxed ever) are dry and feel a bit fuzzy. The treated skis (also never waxed) are still dark and shiny. It leads me to believe that storage wax is unnecessary. I do not plan on waxing them over the summer, maybe just brushing them in the fall. Jury is still out on the long-term performance, so stay tuned, and please let us know your experience!
      SE

    1. Hi Jack!
      It works better in cold powder than in cold packed. In any fresh snow, the Phantom glides great--a very seamless feel. In very cold packed snow, it does have to get up to speed before you can really feel the glide kick in. Pushing around the base area and skating in cold packed snow is a bit slow, but in fresh snow, and certainly when you get above 10 mph or so, the glide is pretty seamless. Hope that helps!
      SE

  10. Maybe you covered this but I didn't see it...does the base material make any difference? Extruded, sintered, base repair with Petex. Thanks

    1. Hi Dwight!
      As of now, only sintered bases will take the treatment. The Ptex doesn't seem to make much of a difference, as it's generally only small portions that are affected. Hope that helps!
      SE

  11. We purchased new skis from a local retailer. Can we ship our skis to you and have you apply the product? If so, what would the cost be for 2 pairs of skis?

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