post #91 of 91
Once again, I need to thank you guys for the detailed and thoughtful posts. Once I got into removing the structure from the base edges I did have to take some base material off in a few places, but sure enough, the base structure is still enough to make the Shoguns hard to handle, draggy, and sticky in dry fresh snow. I can tell that underneath all the balkiness lurks a pair of troublemaking beasts, so it's time for the next step.

After my last adventure with them on Saturday I stopped by Sport Loft on the way home to deal with my packed out liners, and though I missed Earl and Jeremy, Earl's wife Chris added a thin sole under my footbed to help out until I could see Earl. We had some time to chat while she figured out how to get those stiff Lange liners back in the boots, so I told her about the heavy structure on the Shoguns and how hard they are to ski.

According to Chris, more than one of their customers has come in over the past month or two with the same complaint, and each got a heavy base structure after bringing their skis to a Wintersteiger shop for a base grind, same as me. It seemed to happen around the same time, so her guess (no reason to think it's more than that) is that a Wintersteiger rep came through and showed shops how to set up for warm spring skiing, and at least some of them are slapping that structure onto everything unless they get a specific request, never mind that aside from some brief warmups we've had cold temps and fresh snow for most of the past six weeks. I don't know if she's right, and she was much more tactful about how she said it than I am here, but it would explain why I have this crazy corduroy on my bases.

So that's it. I've got other projects going, so rather than taking on my bases 100% I'll follow the sage advice of those who are smarter than me, at least where I can. I'll get a flat base grind with a fine or medium-fine structure, set the bevels (I even popped for an SVST Final Cut once I got to handle one in a store), prep the bajesus out of them, and settle in for the last few weeks of the season without having to dread what my skis will do to me next time.

Wild Rose does use Wintersteiger machines, but if I specify how I want my bases done I know they'll do it right, and anyway they don't seem like the knee-jerk kind of shop that some places can be. Still, I'll probably have Sport Loft do the work, because these boots are almost two years old and Earl has still been working on them for free, I know they'll do right by me with the skis, and I want to build good will so maybe I can get a deal if I end up flat out replacing these stock liners. I have a secret agenda to have slightly warmer feet, but don't anyone tell Earl or he'll tease me.