Originally Posted by Luigi
Thanks everyone for your feedback. Especially thanks for the archived thread. Seems like the tuning thing to me is personal preference. I need to go ahead and get my own tuning equipment and then experiment until I find what works for me. I will try different bevels and different levels of tip to tail tuning. I've done lots of skiing....... everything from Backcountry in BC, Europe, Patagonia, Heliskiing in Canada, and plenty of lift assisted when I lived in California and Salt Lake. Lou Dawson, first person to climb and ski all 54 14ers in Colorado, detunes his tips and tails to point of contact. That works best for him. Most of my skiing now is groomers back east so I am really learning how to use my edges. I find edging skills are not used as much in the backcountry, powder and crud.
I think the odds are as suggested, your skis were tuned with too little or no base bevel and/or not de-burred. While all mfgrs have tuning 'specs' for their skis that they should come out of the factory with, many skiers develope a personal preferances based on their skiing style. But even if you like the way the come off the rack, find out what their spec tune is and specifically request those numbers when you have any shop re-tune them.
As a general note:
More base bevel makes reduces hard snow precision and makes most skis more forgiving.
More side bevel improves hard snow grip and makes most skis less forgiving.
When I get a new pair I always black the edges with a majic marker and use a diamond stone in a bevel guide to clean/check and true the base and side edge bevels to my preferance for my quiver is Base-1, Side-2 (except SL race at .5 base and 3 side). I like the de-tune to contact point. And as suggested always finish with diamond or ceeramic to gumi stone polishing and deburring cycle. While maybe not relavent in powder, I find that a polished edge skis noticably smoother on hard snow.
If I am getting a major base grind, I ask them to leave the bottom flat and not touch the sides, as an old racer I prefer to re-set my base bevel and re-dress my side bevel by hand so I know exactly what I am skiing on.
If you are not into hand tuning find a shop that can consistantly re-produce a tune you like the feel of, find out who tune them, talk to them about what you like and why (tip'em a 6-pak), and build a relationship with them so you can request that same tuen/tuner each time. If the shop does not support this level of service, you could be in the wrong shop.
One issue I'd suggest is that most skiers go too long between tune-ups. The cyle they get trapped into is trying over time to adjust to their ski's diminished or inconsistant performance, and then when they do get a tune, they are thrown off by the skis suddenly resurected precision and accuracy.
Remember that while you can tune a piano, and tune a ski, you can't tuna fish (but you can can tuna fish).