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Inside/outside edge tune

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I have a question for you guys (especially the tuning experts out there).

Last week I had my skis tuned and specified that I like them sharp from tip to tail. This weekend I noticed that, as I changed the skis ( I switch my skis all the time to wear the edges evenly) the edges of the skis were definitely not tuned the same way. The inside edge was clearly "sharper" and "grabbier" than the outside edge (which becomes the inside edge when I switch my skis). In fact after several more runs and ski switches I realized that the sharpness was there, but the degree of base bevel was different around the tips. When switching the skis I simply had to tip the skis further to get the same edge hold. No big deal, but ...

Do shops de-tune (increase base bevel to) the outside edges? Is that a PMTS tune, so that you can lighten the inside ski and take it for a ride without it grabbing at the snow (that is just a joke!).

I should add that my skis do not have a specific left and right ski. Only the tip of the ski (and the labels that the shop put on them) would give a hint about left/right ski.
post #2 of 4
Sounds like a bad tune to me, Tom. Unless you had specifically requested that your edges be tuned differently, they should have tuned them the same.

Getting skis tuned is a bit like taking your car to a mechanic. If you ask a few intelligent-sounding questions, the mechanic is more likely to take you seriously and do a careful, quality job. Next time you get your skis tuned, tell them what bevels you want on the sides and base. If you don't have a personal preference here, ask someone at a shop that sells your skis (or ask here in the equipment section) what the recommended bevels are. If that fails, just ask for a 1 degree base edge bevel and a 1 degree side edge bevel if you ski on soft to average snow, or a 1 degree base edge bevel and a 2 degree side edge bevel if you usually ski on hard to icy snow. These are good "average" numbers. The precise numbers aren't as important as the message the question sends to the mechanic--that you are knowledgeable and particular, and that he or she had better do a good job!

If you don't even know what I'm talking about, don't worry. Just tell the mechanic what I said. If HE doesn't know what I'm talking about, find another mechanic.

Another thing you can do is to ask the mechanic to determine what the bevels are on your skis, and whether your skis are flat, concave, or convex. If he just eyeballs them, with no tools, grab your skis and run to the exit. If he pulls out a real true bar and carefully checks each ski against a backlight, and shows you what he sees, stick around. If he has a bevel gauge (pretty rare) and actually measures your bevels precisely, keep him!

Another suggestion is to get your skis ground flat, and then bevel and finish them yourself (this is what I usually do). There are great tools, not too expensive, that can precisely bevel and sharpen both your base and side edges. Carry a diamond stone in your pocket and learn to use it to maintain your edges between tunes. It's not difficult, and you will be able to keep your edges exactly the way you like them, consistently.

Best regards,
Bob Barnes
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 
Thanks Bob!

This shop uses one of those tuning machines (there are only a few in Canada) and it should be all automatic. They normally give me a great, consistent tune, except last time. I suspect that an over-zealous technician thought that increasing base bevel (manually) on the outside tips is a good idea. Also, Salomon recommends 1 degree base and side and I always ask for the standard.

I will be more dilligent next time.
post #4 of 4
Just a quick note. My tech told me that Salomon actually recesses the edges below the base, and that some shop (i.e. at Whistler) have a machice that can give you a 'proper' Salomon tune. You are right though, in that a 1-deg base and 1-deg edge bevel is pretty common for shops (like mine) without the big fancy machine.
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