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Tuned skis

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Just got back from Winter Park, Steamboat, Alta and Jackson Hole - Great trip.
A while back someone wrote that after he had his skis tuned, they seemed to "grab" and asked for advise. This forum advised that he get a lesson to fix the "grabbing" problem.
I have a pair of Volkl 5 stars. Bought them 2 years ago new. I just had them tuned while in Salt Lake at a well known ski shop and I can identify with the "grabbing" problem. While a lesson would be good for me, the skis, until now and a rocky run, were easily sharp enough to easily cut my hand if not careful. Now, after having them tuned, they ski differently and seem to "grab" on the mountain. The first run down made me think of the message written on this forum.
So, to the author of "grabbing" - I don't have any answers but do understand your problem and hope the next tune makes my skis and your skis ski like they did when new.

Garyskr

PS - We might also take a lesson anyway.
post #2 of 21

tuning

I have found that if I tune the ski myself I learn more about tuning. You have been talking about edges. It is quite simple to put a sharp edge on a ski. Many shops do weak job. Sometimes a slight over hang occurs. A ceramic stone usually fixes that. But only if you have one and know how to use it.

Give it a try - it's fun.
post #3 of 21
The situation that you describe can be caused by a machine burr that has not been removed in the tuning process, a step that gets overlooked more frequently than you might think. A light polishing with a ceramic stone will take care of this just by holding the stone flush with the base and moving it along the edge. Sometimes a bad base structure can also make the skis act mean. It's incredible how many bad tunes that I have experienced coming out of shops over the last few years, not only with my own skis, but also with demos. You would think that the shops would at least take care of their demo fleet, because that's what sells skis for them.
post #4 of 21
I was the poster a couple of weeks ago about tuned "grabby" skis and Mac's advise above completely eliminated the problem for me. If you do not have a stone , a shop can do this for you and its a couple of minute job at best to remove the hanging burr.
post #5 of 21
I also experienced recently the same problem. My skis are nearing the end of their useful life and were getting somewhat base-high from numerous hand filings. I took them into a local shop for a stone grind. The first day was a powder day so I didn't notice anything, but then next day my tails would hang scarily in the bumps. I could not feel or see a burr, per-se, but I touched up the edges with an Arkansas stone. No more problem.

AM.
post #6 of 21
A typical stone grind leaves the ski flat and most modern skis come from the factory with a bevel at the tip to ease the ski into the turn......Some of the better "tuning machines" can be programed to do this but your average belt or stone grinder leaves them flat. A good tech will hand tune to finish off what the stone grinding starts. That is one possible problem.

The other is what most of you have hit on---a burred edge or an edge that is too sharp all the way to the tip......Skis can be "detuned" a bit (ie.) dull the tip area slightly. Have a good ski tech show you how do do this---it is easy but is a subtle thing that shouldn't be overdone.
post #7 of 21
Just to check, one does the base edge first, then the side, correct? So the hanging burr hangs off the side, extending past the base, correct? So you touch up the base edge to knock it down with a ceramic or arkansas stone, correct?
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by jstraw
Just to check, one does the base edge first, then the side, correct? So the hanging burr hangs off the side, extending past the base, correct? So you touch up the base edge to knock it down with a ceramic or arkansas stone, correct?
Correct
post #9 of 21
I do it like this:

Side filing, then the base filing. Side polish, then base polish. Then, clean and wax the bases.
post #10 of 21
The 'grabbing' description is a bit vague so I'm not sure of the problem. One issue can be too deep a texture in the base. Especially on cold snow this can prevent the skis from pivoting or really turing at all as they just want to go straight in line with the texture. The first time I encountered it I was surprised at how severe the effect was. The fun thing was I was skiing with the head of a major ski distributor in this country and trying out his skis. The tune was done locally and badly. It made an otherwise perfectly fine ski miserable.
post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scalce
Correct

Thanks brother Bear.
post #12 of 21
Interesting. I like my edges sharp, tip to tail. I want the edges to grab to carve turns. Never the less, I don't usually have a problem skidding a turn or skidding the tails to maintain a tight radius at low speed.

I can see how having detuned (dull) edges nearer the tip and tail would encourage the skis to skid, but what I'm having trouble getting my head around is how you tune out this "grabing".

Where exactly do you draw the line? Do you vary the base bevel gradually from tip to boot? Do you change the side bevel? Do you just dull them at the tip, and keep them sharp within 20 cm of the boot? Does having the sharp part come up further make them more grabby? Don't you want them to grab and hold? or do you only want the midsection of the ski to hold onto it's edge?
post #13 of 21
Ghost--that's a lot of questions !!!! Many recreational skiers and some Instructors & other pros find that if is a ski is sharp all the way to the tip that it can have a tendency to "hook" (grab suddenly) at the start of the turn. It, of course, will vary with stance/speed/ snow conditions and each individuals ski (as in the model).

I think all ski manufactures bevel the bases within a few inches of the tip to ease the entry into the turn---and even the amount of bevel varries.

Where do you draw the line ?----personal preference and the original design of your ski. (I too sharpen all the way tip to tail)

The normal area of the bevel by the manufacturer is quite close to the tip, extending no more than a couple of inches. Many do alter the edge angle (from 90 degrees to the base) to a few degrees away from 90 in the area where the bevel is.

De-tuning (dulling) at the tip can reduce this sudden grab and of course I am assuming that the ski is properly tuned to begin with.

Those of you who want to dull the tip of the ski----it should be done with a sharpening "stone". Have someone who is "in the know" show you how. This is a fairly subtle thing and shouldn't be overdone....
post #14 of 21
"A typical stone grind leaves the ski flat and most modern skis come from the factory with a bevel at the tip to ease the ski into the turn......Some of the better "tuning machines" can be programed to do this but your average belt or stone grinder leaves them flat. A good tech will hand tune to finish off what the stone grinding starts. That is one possible problem."
i could be reading this wrong but a stone grind has nothing to do with edge tuning, a stone grind will flatten the ski across the width of the ski and leave a structure in the base for hopefully optimum glide(as per L7s comments a lot of shops leave a way to aggresssive structure in the base)
edge tuning in most cases is a whole different process apart from stone grinding, it can be done by hand, belt, ceramic disc or a combination there of.
grabby may not be the best term to use as a poor wax job is/can be described this way as can the too deep structure.
post #15 of 21
Waxman- my point was that the ski may be "grabbing" due to the base being flat near the tip vs the bevel it came with from the factory.

Given that, once the edge (side edge) is sharpened the ski may suddenly grab at the start of the turn due either to a sharp edge run all the way to the tip or lack of bevel per original design or both.

I see your point on the use of the word "grabby". I am working under the assumption that it is the edge that the poster here feels "grabbing" (which is hooking), but it could in fact be the wrong wax if they are intermittently sticking.
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by jstraw
Just to check, one does the base edge first, then the side, correct? So the hanging burr hangs off the side, extending past the base, correct? So you touch up the base edge to knock it down with a ceramic or arkansas stone, correct?
Low-tech, gotta-get-it-done approach: I run the bottom of a coffee mug over the edges at the tips and tails.
post #17 of 21
My recent experience only involved having the tails "hang". In fact, the tips almost felt dull and were slow to initiate a turn. I suspect the shop detuned the tips perhaps a bit too much.

The grabby tails were downright scary. On steep terrain, where I needed to make quick hop turns, the tails would simply not come around like before. The fun-o-meter was definitely approaching zero.

After cleaning up the edges and sharpening the tips with my hand tools, they are working quite well once again. The strange part to me was that I could not see or feel this "hanging burr" that many have referred to. Is it so subtle that one would need to use magnification or other means to detect? Just curious.

AM.
post #18 of 21
You can feel it with your fingers. It's a ridge that sticks down from the side. The feeling is on loose snow, no problems. But hit some hardpack, and they really stick! No skidding at all. It is almost impossible to do pivot slips with a burr on hardpack, since if you start to roll off the bases at any position except perpendicular to fall line, you will turn.
post #19 of 21
My coach recommended loosening the boots or using softer boots if the edges feel "grabby": this way, when it's icy or hardpack, you can simply retighten your boots and have full control. Personally, like Ghost, I prefer my skis being able to grab the snow early in the turn: I've had enough detuned straight skis that skidded a mile...
post #20 of 21
I just figured detuning tips and tails primarily dealt with the part that curves away from the snow and isn't meant to be edging in a turn anyway.
post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Attacking Mid
My recent experience only involved having the tails "hang". In fact, the tips almost felt dull and were slow to initiate a turn. I suspect the shop detuned the tips perhaps a bit too much.

The grabby tails were downright scary. On steep terrain, where I needed to make quick hop turns, the tails would simply not come around like before. The fun-o-meter was definitely approaching zero.

After cleaning up the edges and sharpening the tips with my hand tools, they are working quite well once again. The strange part to me was that I could not see or feel this "hanging burr" that many have referred to. Is it so subtle that one would need to use magnification or other means to detect? Just curious.

AM.
I'm just wondering if the lack of force at the tips contributed to less torque to the turn and thereby less force moving your tails the other way.

Pushing south at the tip helps push the tails north.

tail=======boot===========Tip

P.S.
Tail steeing can be fun. you can carve a pretty tight radius turn with all your weight on the tail and a lot of leverage. It's all good.
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