Ski base cleaner formula

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Smitty
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Location: Alberta, Canada
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by Smitty » Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:00 pm

One of the best ways to find out the composition of a chemical like this is to check the SDS (Safety Data Sheet). This is a document that the manufacturer has to provide to industrial / commercial users of the product to ensure they understand the composition and thus what risks it may pose to workers exposed to the chemical. Unfortunately SDS are governed by occupational health/safety authorities, so these same documents are not explicitly shared with consumers like they are with industrial / commercial users.

So for instance with Swix, they have to publish the SDS for their base cleaner somewhere. But it's not front and centre because it does not apply to regular consumers. Navigate to this section of their website:

https://www.swixsport.com/en/about-swix ... vironment/

Then about half way down, there is a section titled "Safety Data Sheets". Follow that link, it will take you to an external Sharepoint database with all of their SDS's. Once in here, the top of the folder structure is organized by language, so select EN for English or FR for French. The chemicals are listed by product code, so the document you want is the one that begins with I64C which is the product code for base cleaner.

Once inside the SDS, chemical composition is Section 3. Keep in mind this will only list ingredients that are hazardous. Manufacturers are also allowed to keep proprietary chemical descriptions pretty vague. But here we can see in Section 3, the main ingredient (80-100%) in Swix base cleaner is "Hydrocarbon, C9-C10, n-alkanes, isoalkanes, <2% aromatics". Which is just good old fashioned mid-density petroleum distillate plus a little bit of (< 2%) naturally occurring carcinogenic substances such as benzene or toluene.

So, full translation: Swix base cleaner (as well as all the other branded non-citrus that I could find in a quick SDS search) are basically white gas / naphtha. You could buy Coleman stove fuel for $5/litre.
Last edited by Smitty on Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Smitty
Posts: 117
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2018 11:37 am
Location: Alberta, Canada
Ski style: Bushwhacking
Favorite Skis: Asnes Gamme
Favorite boots: Alpina Alaska

Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by Smitty » Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:02 pm

One thing to keep in mind is that since non-hazardous ingredients are not listed in SDS, there could be a couple more additives. But since the concentration of petroleum distillate is listed as 80%-100%, additives in this case would be negligible.





Whiteout
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by Whiteout » Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:32 pm

Smitty, you know well what I know weakly about those data sheets. Can't find the like button yet, but will work on it.
Always thought Swix cleaner was like naphtha. BTW in the US, I think you can find naphtha as charcoal lighter fluid. I say that because you can't buy painters naphtha here in California any more. And Coleman fuel for us is white gas--so basically gasoline for stoves...more volatile than naphtha.





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Smitty
Posts: 117
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2018 11:37 am
Location: Alberta, Canada
Ski style: Bushwhacking
Favorite Skis: Asnes Gamme
Favorite boots: Alpina Alaska

Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by Smitty » Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:50 pm

Thanks Whiteout. You make a very good distinction. White gas, and other camping stove fuels, are hydrocarbon blends so may have a larger portion of more volatile light ends included, depending on brand. Some naphthas are considered "light" (more volatile) and some "heavy" (less volatile), same thing there. A person might have to play around a bit. But any of them would put you in the right wheel house, just may need to be more careful regarding ventilation with some.

A high quality kerosene would be another option, it should be in the C10 range. As you go heavier hydrocarbon (or lower quality) you may have an increased chance of a residual film.





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Rodbelan
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by Rodbelan » Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:07 pm

Smitty wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 2:00 pm
One of the best ways to find out the composition of a chemical like this is to check the SDS (Safety Data Sheet). This is a document that the manufacturer has to provide to industrial / commercial users of the product to ensure they understand the composition and thus what risks it may pose to workers exposed to the chemical. Unfortunately SDS are governed by occupational health/safety authorities, so these same documents are not explicitly shared with consumers like they are with industrial / commercial users.

So for instance with Swix, they have to publish the SDS for their base cleaner somewhere. But it's not front and centre because it does not apply to regular consumers. Navigate to this section of their website:

https://www.swixsport.com/en/about-swix ... vironment/

Then about half way down, there is a section titled "Safety Data Sheets". Follow that link, it will take you to an external Sharepoint database with all of their SDS's. Once in here, the top of the folder structure is organized by language, so select EN for English or FR for French. The chemicals are listed by product code, so the document you want is the one that begins with I64C which is the product code for base cleaner.

Once inside the SDS, chemical composition is Section 3. Keep in mind this will only list ingredients that are hazardous. Manufacturers are also allowed to keep proprietary chemical descriptions pretty vague. But here we can see in Section 3, the main ingredient (80-100%) in Swix base cleaner is "Hydrocarbon, C9-C10, n-alkanes, isoalkanes, <2% aromatics". Which is just good old fashioned mid-density petroleum distillate plus a little bit of (< 2%) naturally occurring carcinogenic substances such as benzene or toluene.

So, full translation: Swix base cleaner (as well as all the other branded non-citrus that I could find in a quick SDS search) are basically white gas / naphtha. You could buy Coleman stove fuel for $5/litre.
Man, now you're talking! A lot of guys could rely on that type of info. Thanks a million!
É y fa ty fret? On é ty ben dun ti cotton waté?
célèbre et ancien chant celtique





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eraymond
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by eraymond » Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:14 pm

For klister, the trick is to set the skis outside to get as cold as the weather allows, much easier to scrape.
IMHO klister is just not worth the hassle.

In the conditions that require klister, I use skins. If I were in rolling up/down territory, then kicker skins. Perhaps a bit more weight to carry, but unless I'm meadow skipping, I'm carrying my skins anyway. YMMV

I think the primary component of goo-gone is naptha.





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Rodbelan
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by Rodbelan » Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:30 pm

eraymond wrote:
Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:14 pm
For klister, the trick is to set the skis outside to get as cold as the weather allows, much easier to scrape.
IMHO klister is just not worth the hassle.

In the conditions that require klister, I use skins. If I were in rolling up/down territory, then kicker skins. Perhaps a bit more weight to carry, but unless I'm meadow skipping, I'm carrying my skins anyway. YMMV
Sorry to hear that... You should give it another try; klister is VERY efficient (and goey of course). I would never kick and glide on rolling terrain with kicker skins (even worst with full skins). GF and I are pretty confortable with klister in the spring. Well, to each its own way. That's fine...
É y fa ty fret? On é ty ben dun ti cotton waté?
célèbre et ancien chant celtique





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phoenix
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by phoenix » Sat Jan 02, 2021 5:58 pm

I'll second that Rod, klister performs very well when called for. And I also dislike any sort of down skiing on skins. Great for climbing, or as a last resort if you're wax or scales won't work, but not very pleasant to actually ski on otherwise. For me.





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fisheater
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by fisheater » Sat Jan 02, 2021 7:35 pm

Rod, this is the bottle I’ve been using the past couple of seasons. Sometimes after wiping clean, I will need to spray a second time.
8C72F515-D99A-4DCD-A976-A5D7C648B08B.jpeg





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joeatomictoad
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Re: Ski base cleaner formula

Post by joeatomictoad » Sat Jan 02, 2021 10:15 pm

Never thought I would be reading about Safety Data Sheets in a ski forum.
What's next, lockout-tagout procedures?
Job safety analysis?
Slips, trips, and falls? :lol:





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