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How many times can I Stone Grind?

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
I had some rock damages on my Salomon Crossmax 10 skies. So, when I got to SLC, I took it to Canyon Sports to get it evaluated. They have several levels of tune ups, the highest level is a $40(list) stone grind, the next level is light stone grind, and so on to the least expensive $5 hot wax. The supervior look at the base damages and told me it should be p-tex and top level $40 stone grinding including the p-tex at no extra charge. He told me when its done it should be like new and it did! I only had to pay $30 because I had the coupon.

I am wondering how many times can a ski like mine be stone grinded? And, if the price is in line with the county?
post #2 of 26
A shop guy told me you can get about 12 stonegrinds on a base. Another guy told me some of the new machines take less off and you can get 15.
post #3 of 26
I don`t think that you want to stonegrind too much...notwithstanding stonegrinds due to damage---I find that at least once mid season and end/start of season does the job...however , I diamond stone every evening/morning I ski with some sort of base application--hot wax/zardoz etc..save that base.....
post #4 of 26
How many times a ski gets ground is determined by how severe the damage was, and how much the machine operator takes off each time. There is no way a fixed number can be given because there are too many variables. I've seen skis ground to useless in one session because of ineptitude of the monkey pressing the buttons.
post #5 of 26
you must fully trust the guy on the machine. As Betaracer says, a monkey can ruin them, but more likely a lazy teckie who doesn't expect to see you again (you are far away on holiday) will grind down rather than bothering with the ptex and most of your base will end up on the floor.
post #6 of 26
I know of skis that have been through a machine 50 times or so. Totally pointless other than to prove a point. They were getting little damage. Like Beta Racer says it depends on how much damage and how clean you want them to be when they come out. If it's a deep burr and you want no sign of it well you could finish the ski in 2 or 3 grinds. If you are fine with the ski being pretty clean but some of the worst burrs still showing then they'll last much longer. My skis probably get an average of 12 grinds in their life but they are all very light and I am pretty good at avoiding damage (usually). You need a machine you trust and a tech you trust.

[ April 13, 2004, 12:44 PM: Message edited by: L7 ]
post #7 of 26
IMO people stone grind to much. For most of us it really doesn't matter if you have minor damage to the bases. I think a lot of prople think the bases have to be perfect. It really doesn't matter. I have mine ground in early December, after I've skied about 10-15 days. I wait untill the snow is getting good. Then don't have them done again until next December. I have more then one pair of skis and ski an average of 60 days a season.
Just begin to get the skis ready for summer last night and did a few base repairs before putting the summer wax on them. The base were not pretty but they skied fine. The edges are not perfect but they're sharp. I don't have any problem holding on ice. I used to do the season tune thing, but now I know better.

On my G3's I had a 3/8" X 3" area next to the edge of course, of missing P-tex that two shops could not fix. I melted some of the metal-grip into it pressed it in with a heated flat bar, heated the metal edge a bit and the repair has held up fine. I did melt the edge of the ski a bit but there was not harm done to it. It still doesn't look perfect, but when I'm skiing it, I can't tell anything is wrong.
post #8 of 26
In case anyone gets the wrong impression I do not stone grind to make my bases pretty. I stone grind to keep the base flat and even with the edges which is where the work is needed. My skis go on a machine that does both at once.

If you hand tune edges a lot you will quite likely make the bases convex which is not that good. To paraphrase, I used to do the hand tune thing but now I know better.

To restate my answer to your question 'How many times CAN I stone grind?' A lot in the right situation. However you should only do it when necessary and on a machine you trust with a tech you trust. Necessary to me refers to when the edges need to be brought down for repair or sharpness. (I'm also lazier and have access to a machine).
post #9 of 26
I do check my bases with a flat bar from time to time. I haven't thought much about it until now but it may work out that I have my skis ground after about 25 or 30 days.

I tune with the 200 grit MoonFlex, and try to stay away from touching the base angles. I only take the high spots off the base edge so the iron will not pick up a scratch. I don't tune the base edge as part of my daily touch up. I have the vises set up on a table in the basement and touch up our skis after every use. For the three of us it takes about 15-20 mins.

When I do need the services of a shop. I'm lucky enough to have a trusted tech that used to tune on the W/C circuit.

As you say you need to be able to trust the shop. I have a friend who is a Rep. The shop he works out of messed up his skis. He brought them to me to fix. When I skied them after I fixing them, I was so happy with them that I told him it would take me a while to fix them and he couldn't have them back until the end of the season. LOL. He was happy with them when he skied them the next day.

As for cost $25.00 for the stone grind. It also depends on how well they know you. Make sure they see you often. Most techs like a pizza or food every now and then, tips go along way...
post #10 of 26
Jack,

The posts here all point to the one factor that really matters... the tech you have grinding your skis. There are so many variables that go into answering the question of "how many times can I get my skis ground?" that one solid answer cannot be given. L7 mentions a machine that both gets the base flat and even with the edges... well I'm not sure what stone grinder doesn't do this. The bottom line is that a stone grind is only as good as the guy who is doing it. If you have an inexperienced tech you could have someone who makes 7-10 passes over the stone, heats the base up while doing so, and leaves a completely uneven base as a result. If you have base damage or burrs on your base edge get them to fill the shot with base material or work the burr by hand as much as possible and then have them finish the base with a machine. A good tech can take care of problems or put a great pattern in a ski with 2-3 passes over a freshly dressed stone.
post #11 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thanks for every one's suggestions. As you can see, I am more confused than ever since the opinions vary so much. But I have the idea that I should not stone grind the skis unless it is absolutly necessary. There is no way I can hob nob with the techs when they are doing it. I cannot spend a day just to take care of my skis.
post #12 of 26
Jack,

The posts here all point to the one factor that really matters... the tech you have grinding your skis. There are so many variables that go into answering the question of "how many times can I get my skis ground?" that one solid answer cannot be given. L7 mentions a machine that both gets the base flat and even with the edges... well I'm not sure what stone grinder doesn't do this. The bottom line is that a stone grind is only as good as the guy who is doing it. If you have an inexperienced tech you could have someone who makes 7-10 passes over the stone, heats the base up while doing so, and leaves a completely uneven base as a result. If you have base damage or burrs on your base edge get them to fill the shot with base material or work the burr by hand as much as possible and then have them finish the base with a machine. A good tech can take care of problems or put a great pattern in a ski with 2-3 passes over a freshly dressed stone.
post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally posted by TheSkiGuy:
Jack,

L7 mentions a machine that both gets the base flat and even with the edges... well I'm not sure what stone grinder doesn't do this. The bottom line is that a stone grind is only as good as the guy who is doing it. If you have an inexperienced tech you could have someone who makes 7-10 passes over the stone, heats the base up while doing so, and leaves a completely uneven base as a result.
Or a couple of passes with too much pressure or using a stone that hasn't been dressed and is uneven from trying to bite into way too many railed skis. The stone is really for structuring the base. The machine I'm talking about has ceramic discs that only do the edges while the stone is doing the base. The stone also is redressed automatically and oscilates to avoid grooves in it or any uneven wear. Wintersteiger disc shuttle.
post #14 of 26
This is coming from someone who has worked in the ski industry for many years:

The average, general public skier gets their skis shop tuned/stone ground way TOO OFTEN!!!

Unless you are a World Cup Racer or have severe (like core shot) damage, you don't need perfect looking bases for the skis to work effectively. You are just wasting your money even getting your skis stone ground once every season.

Again, unless you have severe damage, all you really need to do is to keep the base waxed and the side edges sharp with a few passes with a file guide.

When you buy new skis, check to see if the base is flat, you like the factory base structure, and the factory base edge angle is right for your intended style of skiing. If any of these parameters is not up to snuff, find an EXPERT tuner and have him/her do their thing.

After that, DO NOT get the skis re-ground unless you have severe rock damage. Those smooth, shallow grooves that you will get in the base from minor rock contact will do nothing to detract from the skis performance. The less you get you skis stone ground, the faster/better the skis will glide. The snow will polish the base better that any tuner can do! Also, DO NOT touch the base angle. Any minor dings can be polished out with a fine diamond stone. Like I said earlier, just wax often, and keep the side bevel sharp.

I have gone as long as 4 years before I need equipment reground. I am on the snow 80-100 days per year.

I know what some of you are thinking: "Then why does the shop suggest full tunes/stone grinds for my skis so often. The techs must know something about the skis that I don't" As an industry insider, here is a little tip: Ski/Snowboard full tunes/stonegrindes are almost PURE PROFIT for the shop. It is way more profitable to service the equipment that to sell the orginal skis! Most techs are trained to sell the customer a full tune even if the skis really only need a wax/side edge treatment.

Don't fall for it: Your skis will last longer, ski just as well, and your wallet will be a lot thicker too!!
post #15 of 26
I agree with TJ. Stone grinding is seldom necessary and is usually a waste of money. My experience is that I can do a much better tune myself using hand tools. Shops which use machine tuning tools frequently mess up the edge bevels and leave the bases concave or convex, or both. The last time I had skis stone ground was a few years ago. I wanted to flatten a the base and was too lazy to do it myself. They came out of the stone grinder worse than when they went in - convex at one end and concave at the other - and were terrible to ski on until I redid them by hand.

If you don't want to do the work yourself, find a tech who will tune the skis the way you want them using only hand tools. The skis will last longer and they'll probably ski better too.

Jim
post #16 of 26
JimL -- Would you mind sharing with us your techniques and tools used? I am curious.

Jason
post #17 of 26
not to bring up an old thread,
but i've been tuning skis at shops for about 5 years now. honestly, i've seen alot of equipment come through that doesn't need a stone grind so we go ahead and just do some edge work. On the contrary, though, i've seen alot of skis come through that could use a good structure in them...extremely smooth...no structure whatsoever, which I was under the impression was not so great for skiing...kind of like a cold glass on a smooth table, the glass "sticks" due to the condensation....

melloboy
post #18 of 26
Digging up some stuff here......

How much in 2008 dollars should a stone grind cost me? That is with nothing else done, no tuning, no wax...just a grind? I got quoted $35 from two local shops.
post #19 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Richie-Rich View Post
Digging up some stuff here......

How much in 2008 dollars should a stone grind cost me? That is with nothing else done, no tuning, no wax...just a grind? I got quoted $35 from two local shops.
That seems about right compared to the shops here in CT. My local guy charges between $45 & $60 for a fulll blown ceramic disc and stone grind tune with base repairs. His pricing depends on how much work needs to be done as far as the base repairs.

So $35 seems about right for just a grind, especially if it's a good one.

Mike
post #20 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Richie-Rich View Post
Digging up some stuff here......

How much in 2008 dollars should a stone grind cost me? That is with nothing else done, no tuning, no wax...just a grind? I got quoted $35 from two local shops.
£7/$13 in the UK for a grind only & nowt else.
post #21 of 26
347 times.
post #22 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jer View Post
347 times.
Actually that is interesting. Has anyone ever seen skis that have been way over-ground (say down thru all P-tex or further) just for the heck of it? Like one of those displays of skis cross sectioned.
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by NE1 View Post
Actually that is interesting. Has anyone ever seen skis that have been way over-ground (say down thru all P-tex or further) just for the heck of it? Like one of those displays of skis cross sectioned.
Yes. I once saw a ski that had been ground 348 times. It was horrible.
post #24 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by spyderjon View Post
£7/$13 in the UK for a grind only & nowt else.

Not even a cuppa and some biccis?
post #25 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jer View Post
Yes. I once saw a ski that had been ground 348 times. It was horrible.
You should have told the guy to grind it once more and put it back in prime shape.
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jer View Post
Yes. I once saw a ski that had been ground 348 times. It was horrible.
That would shear off the binding screws for sure; just a topsheet and a plate on it. But I'd give it 10 out of 10 for "longitudinal flexibility"!
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