I want to restore/renew an old wooden sled with metal runners
January 21, 2014 8:46 PM   Subscribe

A friend has an old wood sled in storage, unused for years. Beautiful lines and shape. Name long worn away. Looks very similar to the one on this site. But the wood needs refinishing.Metal runners are chipped and rusted; they need brushing, priming and painting. Would you oil or wax the runners afterwards?? Ideas?
posted by ebesan to Home & Garden (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
The link you have referred to includes comprehensive instructions on how to restore a wooden sled. So it's not clear what your question is. Is it about the runners? If you're going to paint them, then you shouldn't need to oil or wax them. The paint serves the purpose of protecting the metal.
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 9:39 PM on January 21, 2014

If you're planning to restore it as a useable sled, I'd go with waxing the runners --- the 'authority' for that being the time I watched the Inuit contestants in the biggest annual dogsled race in northern Greenland prepping their sleds by waxing the runners pre-race, just as skiers might. (Their runners were wood though; traditionally, they'd have had runners made out of something like whale ribs.) YMMV!
posted by easily confused at 9:40 PM on January 21, 2014

Response by poster: The link was a restoration. I want to make it useable again also
posted by ebesan at 9:48 PM on January 21, 2014

In use, we always waxed the runners. They came painted, IIRC, but the paint on the runners disappears pretty quickly. It doesn't really matter either way - if you paint it, it will be gone in use.

As a kid we used either stubs of candles or a block of canning parafin. I was thinking about this last week watching my kids sledding on plastic/foam sleds thinking that modern ski/snowboard wax would have been awesome on sled runners.
posted by plinth at 3:05 AM on January 22, 2014

Yeah, waxing runners makes them sled better and helps protect the paint, which helps prevent rust.
posted by Miko at 8:57 AM on January 22, 2014

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