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Best way to sharpen edges - Page 2

post #31 of 47
Agree with sibhusky 100%. I went for over two years with uneventful shop tunes from several different places, and although the Deep Powder House always did a noticeably better job, none of them were bad. It only took one terrible tune to make me want to take the reins, and taking my first pair of self-tuned skis out on the snow yesterday proved that I was right to do so.

Besides, I got to buy all kinds of fun tools. biggrin.gif
post #32 of 47
I agree with Sib & Litterbug.

Can a shop's machines do a better job? I dunno. What does that mean? More precise geometry? Is the ultimate precision of the angles the end all be all? Or does close count and a honed sharp point more important? ...I go with a sharp edge and bevels that are shy of a perfect .5/4 is A OK if it is sharp.

It is rare conditions that I do not tune after each day on the snow. It is easy to do so having the tools right at hand, but I cannot imagine paying daily for another to maintain my equipment. Most days tuning is good therapy! ...and if your skis are sharp and don't hold, you know it is the driver (YOU) that made the wrong move.

A common practice that many subscribe to is having a shop set the geometry using a machine then to maintain the edges and wax themselves between shop tunes. Similarly, many will have a shop base grind periodically to get the base edges flat and establish the structure, then set the geometry manually and maintain from there. Some do the whole 9yards by hand. Everyone figures out what works best for them.
post #33 of 47

cgeib, that is exactly how I feel, and good point about better sharp and a little off then dead on and not sharp.

 

I debur the side edges almost every day, wax every 2 days for the most part and every once in a while file the side edges when they really need it.

 

If I had to pay someone to do it that many times not only would it be costly, but inconvenient.  Can't leave them at a ski area to be done because I ski regularly at at least two different areas.


Edited by SkiMangoJazz - 12/25/13 at 2:42pm
post #34 of 47
SMJ brings up the other side of it. The more I ski, the more I notice the difference pre- and post-wax and/or tune. The more I notice, the more often I want it done, and the cost adds up quickly.
post #35 of 47

I would put ski tuning on the same level as car waxing. Especially if you go to forums that are dedicated to a specific thing, cars or skiing, you will see a bunch of different techniques and products used.

As a couple of people on here have already said, there are various ways of involvement with tuning as well as car detailing.

 

I used to spend a day and a half detailing my car, but now I have it down to about 6 hours. Most people look at me like I am crazy when I say that. I am not doing any competitions with my car, but use the time for detailing as a relaxing method too. It is fun and I don't mind doing it.

 

I would say that the same applies to ski tuning. I will do my skis, 4 pair, and will spend about 3 hours just prepping them  for winter storage.

 

If you enjoy that type of thing, I am sure you will end up getting various tools, waxes, brushes etc. I wanted something a bit quicker this time around and didn't want to spend too much money, so I ended up with the SkiVisions tools.

 

My friend and I took an old pair of his skis and flattened them with the base flattener from ski visions and then did the edges with the edge sharpener. Base was set at 1 degree and sides at 2. Ran the file first, then the green stones. Ran the gummi stone at 45 degrees with no pressure to deburr the edhes as Atomicman suggested and the skis did great today. My friend was very surprised and was impressed with the tune. He was ready to get rid off the skis, but with the tune he said he would keep them as a spare.

 

I skiid on my skis today and after I was done skiing, I retouched my skis because it was fairly icy and hard on the slopes. Ran the green stones and the ruby stones on the skis and it took me about 5 minutes from start to finish.

I would say that for performance and time, this tool works really well.

post #36 of 47

Exactly.  It's relaxing, not incredibly difficult to do as routine maintenance.  Best, your kit is ready without getting humped to the shop and back (which i do for a base grind or major repairs)

post #37 of 47

I've paid good money to shops for them to botch my edges. There's no reason to throw good money after bad on shop tunes.

 

It took me about 5 attempts at tuning and figuring it out before I could do a decent tune. My problems were 80% equipment (or lack of), and 20% technique. The ski visions tool seems like a good starting point for a recreational intermediate - as you become more performance oriented (and as you wear down the edges) you might find yourself adding tools (like a , and that's ok. 

 

Heck, the tool even does a 3 degree side edge angle, which is good. Just remember to stay away from the base edge once it's properly set. And if you're finding your files and stones are getting dull:

  • ensure you're taking off the work hardened spots on the ski with a coarser stone (100 grit) before sharpening
  • ensure you're wetting the stones during use - I have some "secret sauce" from svst, other people use a solution of 50% water/50% denatured alcohol
  • ensure you're cleaning the stones; I use an old toothbrush and some comet/water paste, rinsing it thoroughly after
post #38 of 47

I know I'm going to get some razing from some of the better tuners.  I use the FSK tuner and it does work well. (beats tuning free hand as I have done in the past....old school) life expectance is another matter and still has to be determined (likely more costly long term).  I will invest in some dedicated side and base angles as now I know what I want (maybe even make them as I have the tools :D)

 

To be fair I buy very expensive specialized tools and I also buy dollar store specials.  Depending on the application in some cases the dollar store specials out perform and last the expensive stuff (my gain), but for the most cases its for a one time use and replace with good stuff it comes close to getting the desired result.

 

Best advice buy smart, understand your objective and budget. Being cheap can be costly, and spending big bucks may not always be best.  Learn and know the difference.

 

Some of the better tuners here, speak from experience but occasionally forget we mortals (in the tuning world) have yet to figure out what is best or need to cover a large range with little budget.  The good thing about what they say is that they are correct on how tune and achieve the best result.   Ideally, use the equipment they recommend and the method they use and you can't go wrong.

 

Years of experience handed to you on a silver platter.

 

My hats off to you guys (Z and others) for sharing the knowledge willingly and should we get the opportunity to ski together a round of drinks on me.

 

Have a Good Holiday.

post #39 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by StoicDude View Post
 

I would put ski tuning on the same level as car waxing. Especially if you go to forums that are dedicated to a specific thing, cars or skiing, you will see a bunch of different techniques and products used.

As a couple of people on here have already said, there are various ways of involvement with tuning as well as car detailing.

 

I used to spend a day and a half detailing my car, but now I have it down to about 6 hours. Most people look at me like I am crazy when I say that. I am not doing any competitions with my car, but use the time for detailing as a relaxing method too. It is fun and I don't mind doing it.

 

 

 

I get this and appreciate it. cgeib is correct that tuning is usually good therapy. But we don't want to leave the impression that tuning is all in the mind. Detailing your car does not actually make it handle better. Tuning your skis really does make them handle better, with the usual exclusion for spindrift, whose edges and bases never touch anything harder than cotton candy.

post #40 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldschoolskier View Post

I know I'm going to get some razing from some of the better tuners.  I use the FSK tuner and it does work well. (beats tuning free hand as I have done in the past....old school) life expectance is another matter and still has to be determined (likely more costly long term).  I will invest in some dedicated side and base angles as now I know what I want (maybe even make them as I have the tools biggrin.gif )

To be fair I buy very expensive specialized tools and I also buy dollar store specials.  Depending on the application in some cases the dollar store specials out perform and last the expensive stuff (my gain), but for the most cases its for a one time use and replace with good stuff it comes close to getting the desired result.

Best advice buy smart, understand your objective and budget. Being cheap can be costly, and spending big bucks may not always be best.  Learn and know the difference.

Some of the better tuners here, speak from experience but occasionally forget we mortals (in the tuning world) have yet to figure out what is best or need to cover a large range with little budget.  The good thing about what they say is that they are correct on how tune and achieve the best result.   Ideally, use the equipment they recommend and the method they use and you can't go wrong.

Years of experience handed to you on a silver platter.

My hats off to you guys (Z and others) for sharing the knowledge willingly and should we get the opportunity to ski together a round of drinks on me.

Have a Good Holiday.

I agree, OldSchoolSkier.

Get the tool you are comfortable with and fits your budget, then work a nice sharp edge. Freehand sharp is better than dull, I typically carry a stone or two in my pocket while skiing.
post #41 of 47

I've just started sharpening and waxing my first new pair of skis, but I haven't bought a vice (it's toward the end of the season and I just don't want to spend the money right now, although I know I need to if I'm going to keep doing my own work). For the first couple of months that I was waxing and sharpening every 2-3 days of skiing (may have been overkill, but it was a new & exciting practice plus I was riding some hard pack). The tuning seemed to work great and I noticed the better grab after a sharpening, but the last time I took them out after a fresh tune they felt dull and I couldn't carve. I'm worried that I screwed something up. Is it possible I messed up my edges by not using a vice? I've been holding them steady and doing it on a tile floor. 

post #42 of 47
Have you been using a file or diamond stones? Hopefully you were just polishing with diamond stones. First possibility is that you used a file or a coarse stone and now you've taken enough off that your sidewall is in the way and preventing the stone from reaching the edge. Second, horrid possibility is that you've been filing or sharpening the base edge and now you're over beveled and will need a stone grind, shortening the life of your ski.
post #43 of 47
What was different about how you did your last tune? Different file progression? Skipped a step or added a step? Did you not stabilize the skis as well as you usually do? Did you imbibe too much while tuning? Assuming that after many lovely tunes you got a horrible one, something had to be different. If it was a gradual decline, I agree with sibhusky. If that's the case, a vise might have prevented the problem, but you may have simply been unaware that you were degrading your tune.
post #44 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by cgeib View Post

I agree with Sib & Litterbug.

Can a shop's machines do a better job? I dunno. What does that mean? More precise geometry? Is the ultimate precision of the angles the end all be all? Or does close count and a honed sharp point more important? ...I go with a sharp edge and bevels that are shy of a perfect .5/4 is A OK if it is sharp.

It is rare conditions that I do not tune after each day on the snow. It is easy to do so having the tools right at hand, but I cannot imagine paying daily for another to maintain my equipment. Most days tuning is good therapy! ...and if your skis are sharp and don't hold, you know it is the driver (YOU) that made the wrong move.

A common practice that many subscribe to is having a shop set the geometry using a machine then to maintain the edges and wax themselves between shop tunes. Similarly, many will have a shop base grind periodically to get the base edges flat and establish the structure, then set the geometry manually and maintain from there. Some do the whole 9yards by hand. Everyone figures out what works best for them.


Nice post.  I would say that having a "super sharp" edge is not as important as having consistent geometry.  Base bevel is most important for any skier.  It is skiers who know how to carve on high edge angles that will notice the side edge bevels.  If one cannot yet pull a hard carve the side edge may not even be noticed much from a 1 or a 4.

post #45 of 47

post #46 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by treeskier1971 View Post
 

I am looking for a quick way to sharpen the edges.  Is an edge tuner the best way to do this and if so which one?  Are the pretty much all the same or is one better than the other? Or is there a better way of sharpening the edges. 

 

Place your skis, bases up, under a pyramid overnight. In the morning the edges will be razor sharp. No muss, no fuss.

 

 

post #47 of 47
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