I recently bought a new chain for my bike and it came full of chain wax. I was wondering if this was a better lubricant then regular chain lube, or if it had some other qualities that the manufactures thought would be better than lube?
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I suspect that it's cheaper for the manufacturer. Or if they're advertising it, it may just be a market differentiator. Regardless, leave it there rather than trying to remove it because it's right inside the chain where you need it. By all means wipe off any excess on the outside, but don't use a chain cleaner.
The different types of chain lube have been discussed at length on the web and elsewhere, and to the best of my knowlege the definitive answer is "it depends".
Broadly: oil-based (wet) lubes are more water resistant but attract gunk and turn into black sticky goo on your chain, grease-based (wet) lubes are more water and mud resistant but attract even more gunk, and wax (dry) lubes attract little gunk but wash off more easily. You also get various additives (usually teflon) to reduce friction. Then there are solvents used to remove gunk, like WD40 and kerosene. Despite sometimes being called oils, they are not useful as lubricants except in the immediate "stuck bolt" sense - they evaporate very quickly.
The consensus seems to be use wet lubes in the wet, dry lubes in the dry, and caution when discussing the subject.
To my knowledge, chains are not shipped with wax-based lubes. Sheldon Brown always recommended using the chain "as shipped" until the factory stuff wore off... Choice of lubes tends to be highly contentious and engineering types go to great lengths to get every possible extra mile of chain life...
Generally, waxes work well but need constant re-application. They do not tend to attract dirt much. Petro-based lubes offer excellent protection but also tend to attract dirt.... Frequent cleaning seems in order. Systems like wax/grease that require you to heat the substance up and then dismount the chain and immerse... Effective but messy. Personally I find normal, petro-based commercial chain lubes seem to work pretty well regardless of brand. I use the "Finish Line" products on the department bikes and a six or seven dollar bottle will last the season.
The wax-like chain lube on a new chain primarily serves to keep it from rusting in storage and transit. Oil would leak off and make a mess, while not protecting the chain as well.
You can use old-fashioned chain wax on a chain but it's a pain to apply -- basically you have to remove the chain and dip it in melted wax (which was generally thinned with kerosene, creating something of a fire hazard). Modern liquid lubes are available in a variety of "wetnesses" from quite "dry" to gooky-wet, so no need to use old-fashioned wax. (The "dry" liquid lubes basically contain a wax-like substance "suspended" in a "vehicle" that evaporates rapidly.)
With modern chain cleaning systems much of this is no longer a big deal. You can easily clean your chain once or twice a week (or after every ride if you wish) and apply new oil, so much less need to worry about "tuning" the lube for the conditions.