VELO21 ULTIMATE PAINTWORK PROTECTION 30ml £9.50

The Velo21 Ultimate Paintwork Protection is as close to universal as I’ve used to date. Unlike most waxes, its compatible with all surface types. Gloss, Satin, and Matt colours, steel, titanium, aluminium alloys and of course, carbon fibre/plastics.

Results are very pleasing and the effects long-lived. That said, I’d hope so, given the asking price and in some instances, I’d top it off with a sealant product, such as Crankalicious Enduro Long Lasting Frame Sealant.

Pros: Quick curing, economical, very durable and almost universal.

Cons: Relatively expensive.

Science Bit/Composition

We’re used to, and fully appreciate people’s silence, when it comes to disclosing sensitive stuff. Steve at Velo21 would tell me Ultimate was a mixture, comprising of 60% Carnauba and an undisclosed percentage of polymer waxes.

The former is renowned for producing a very deep, lasting lustre. Hence their popularity in car circles. No surprise they’ve steadily found favour in cycling circles too. Waxes serve several purposes (a) to beautify (b) make bikes easier to clean (c) protecting paint and other surfaces from the elements, including sweat/road salt, UV rays etc.

Ultimate Paintwork Protection also comes in two sizes (30ml and 90ml) and a choice of three scents. Judging by our Blueberry Glaze ,these are authentic and refreshingly subtle. 

Application

Ideally, give bikes a sudsy bucket wash and then dry thoroughly. (I’ve applied ours to bone dry and faintly damp bikes with no problems, it just takes a little while longer for the wax cure to that familiarly hazy state).

Now, pop the lid and dip your microfibre cloth into the hard, green elixir. A little goes a long way, so you only need a trace. Work this into the frameset and components (swerving braking surfaces, for obvious reasons) until you’ve treated the entire machine.

Curing times will depend upon air temperature and coverage. However, by the time I’ve finished applying, I was usually ready to begin buffing where’d initially started off. So long as you’ve applied in thin layers, clogging of the cloth isn’t a problem. Nor is much muscle required to bring out the sheen, or restore an even, matt effect.

Case Studies

We received ours back in February, and despite forecasters’ assurances, apocalyptic conditions failed to materialise. Nonetheless, my fixed gear winter/trainer and tubnby tourer, were the obvious candidates. Both frames are gloss powder coat. However, the tourer’s is unsealed, ditto its black forks. Despite considerable efforts, the cream finish shows every oily finger mark and collects these (and anything sticky, such as energy drink spatter) with frustrating ease.

Most components are anodised aluminium alloy (aside from polished rear mech and satin powder coated cranks).  The fixed is dressed in a mix of dun, anodised, raw titanium and carbon composite components. However, I have also used the Ultimate paintwork protection on stove enamelled, and matt 2K paints. Other machines treated, were in seasonal hibernation, but also treated, to assess durability. I was quietly sceptical of the three months cited.

    

Performance 4/5

Overall performance has frankly rivalled the hype. A little goes surprisingly far and the results are generally durable. In two months and approximately 800 miles, my fixed gear winter/trainer still sported a tangible glossy barrier. Mud, rain and general road spatter has found adhesion tricky and easily dismissed with a quick post-ride, garden-hose blow-over.

 

Water just beaded up and rolled away. Dried with a clean, dry towel, the showroom fresh look returned. Titanium can be left raw but does tend to show water and finger marks incredibly easily. Waxed and buffed, there’s been no changes in the stealthy effect, on seat posts, stems, or bottle cages.

Talking of which, plastics have also responded very well. My Tubby Tourer’s Tortec guards are still looking sharp a decade and several, snowy winters/ intense summers hence. To be honest, I’d be inclined toward a dedicated product, such as M16 for lids. However, some overspill was also reclaimed, so applied to this matt Giant and a gloss Bontrager with excellent results. 

Back to my Tubby Tourer. Its electroplated trailer hitch cum Q/R skewer is rather prone to the dreaded taint, despite waxing and periodic shots of maintenance spray. However, resisting my natural urge to give them a quick oily rag wipe-over, they’ve remained unblemished. 

This, despite being blasted with dodgy, dung infused water, road salt and other nasties. Same went for matt paints. No oily blotches, or similar blemishes, when exposed to similar conditions. So, you can imagine my astonishment upon finding the Univega’s frame still collecting oily marks, with equal ease, despite the wax barrier. That said, this has been the case, regardless of what wax I’ve gone for. Waxing first, then applying a sealant product and allowing to cure, has all but eliminated this minor, but frustrating quirk.

Given these contexts, I wasn’t surprised to find bikes in seasonal storage looked, and felt resplendent, three months later. However, though dry stored, outbuildings can still be a little dusty, so it’s reassuring. Some frame preserve had turned fluid, seeping out from bottom bracket shells, as the temperatures climbed. Not unusual, nor particularly difficult to shift, using kitchen towel but no easier than when more traditional car-type waxes have been used.

Value 3/5

Though hardly cheap, its on par with several other boutique blends I’ve used in the recent past, including Crankalicious Crisp and No Quarter (£17.99). However, these are only suited to gloss and satin effects, whereas the Velo21 is as universal as I’ve found, to date. Taking everything into account. Riders of a gloss fleet might find a car type polymer blend (possibly topped off with a sealant product) scores higher, on the most cost-effective option.

Conclusion

There’s no doubting that Velo21 Ultimate Paintwork Protection is an excellent wax that achieves excellent and lasting results on most surfaces. With a mixed fleet, or modern, on-trend matt finishes, it’s a really good choice (and would also make a fantastic gift).

Verdict: 3.75/5 High lustre, long-lasting wax best suited to riders with matt and gloss bikes.

Michael Stenning

www.velo21.com

PUBLISHED JUNE 2019

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