Room Full of Mirrors

… and all I could see was me

Silca's Reviews System And Waxer

I have been using Silca’s hot melt wax since April of 2022. It’s great stuff, and I’ve written a thorough article on it that details my whole setup and the tricks I have learned about the process. So I was rather excited when Silca announced their dedicated wax warmer. I put my name on the waiting list and got one as soon as I could. Unfortunately, I am disappointed with the product and took the time to write a review for it to give some perspective for others to consider. I wrote the review on June 13, 2024 and it still does not show up on the product page as of June 23, 2024. I have used multiple browsers, with ephemeral caches (“incognito mode”), to verify this, so I’m posting here along with some information on Silca’s review system.

Silca’s Review System §

After a couple of days of my review not being posted, I contacted Silca’s customer support asking why the review is not present on their site. Honestly, I wasn’t sure I would get a response, but I did. They said that they:

… have a new review system and it selects random reviews to display and rotates them through the website. It does all of this automatically so no one has to worry about putting them on the website or choosing what to put up.

I think it is fair to try and lessen the maintenance burden on the team, but this review system has the consequence of presenting misleading ratings. As I mentioned, my review still does not show up on the site. I am able to verify this by viewing the product page and selecting the option to show all two star reviews, as my review was ranked with two stars

Below are two screenshots. The first one shows the reviews portion of the product page as it is initially loaded. The second one shows it with the two stars only filter applied. There are a few things to notice about these screenshots:

  1. The overall rating shown is a five star rating because the system rounds up the 4.8 rating and shows it as a full five.
  2. It is claiming there are only 96 reviews that contribute to this rating.
  3. There is only one 2-star review, and it isn’t mine.

Let me be clear: THIS REVIEW SYSTEM IS NOT TRUSTWORTHY. I think it borders on lying, whether intentionally or not. Silca should be complaining to the authors of this system or outright replacing it (while retaining the data submitted by customers).

I appreciate that the support team was responsive to my inquries and was kind enough to go out of their way to send me a copy of the review I originally posted. I am definitely not placing blame on them. I place the blame squarely on the chosen tool, and am giving the benefit of the doubt that those who chose it missed this when they were evaluating it.

Original Review §

The review I submitted to Silca is as follows:

title: I wish it were up to the Silca standard

This is the first Silca product I have been disappointed with. Upfront, the good parts: it’s affordable, well built, and the PID controller is great (and is the reason I bought it). But that’s where it ends for me.

I have used this tool to was my chain three times, and have since gone back to my dedicated esthetician wax warmer. The reasons why:

  1. The chain hanger does not attach to the base. You should be able to screw it on to the bottom in order to make it a single unit.
  2. The pot is way too small. It cannot hold a full bag of the Silca wax pellets. That might be okay if they sold a bag you could simply dump into it without thinking, but as it is you have to guess if you’ve put in just enough such that it won’t overflow when you displace it by putting the chain in. And putting the chain in is rather difficult due to the small size. You must get the chain on the cable coupler just right.
  3. There’s no clip/ledge to hold the cable coupler out of the pot while the chain is treated. You have to come up with some other solution, e.g. a screwdriver.
  4. If you try to warm the wax on the baseline 75º temperature, it will take well over an hour for all of the wax to melt and be ready for the chain. And do not attempt to put the chain on top of the wax so that it warms up at the same time as the wax. You’ll end up with a goopy mess due to the slow warming time.
  5. The buttons are difficult to use. They are capacitive touch buttons, and are very finicky to register touch.

If you’re still interested in this product, I recommend waiting for the next revision (or two).

Summary §

I really like Silca’s products as a general rule. I have no intention of using any other wax, and I love their bar tape. I would even be willing to give the wax warmer another shot if they address all of the issues I have outlined. But they really, really, need to fix their reviews system. Having to replicate it here because their site hides reviews and omits them from the rating calculations is unacceptable.