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Decambering.........yes again.

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Okay the post regarding ski storage inspired me to rethink this.

Two weeks ago I took note that my oldest skis look flat...actually more than flat one was actually bent to a reverse camber...I bent it back.

I really, really took note of how flat my skis have become by comparing them to a brand new pair of Head skis my in-law-to-be had....and they were only intermediate skis, not expert carver models or race models like mine.

My buddy who used to ski for a Chilean ski team back in the 80's saw they way I store my skis and said, "very bad, you're gonna kill the skis, you can keep them base to base, but don't lock the brakes, you'll kill the skis that way."

The two arguments

The wont harm them argument:
Many have posted that storing the skis locked together poses no harm to the camber. You will wear them out long before camber will die. New skis are shipped bound together. Modern ski materials do not decamber like those of old.

The will harm them argument:
Anything that is a spring will wear out if in tension. Keep the skis out of tension will best preserve the leaf spring that is a ski. Even in car storage when you want to preserve the suspension it is a rule that the car be lifted up off the ground by the chassis so as no no weight will be on the springs. Many devices that have spring mechanisms require turning down the tension from in order to preserve them. The way skis are bound when shipped new is only intended as temporary, they should be unbound ASAP.



So like many of you I am going to start putting away my skis, and having always kept them bound together and wondering if the way at least one pair of my skis are visibly very flat, I am thinking that perhaps I should change things around before I have a quiver full of very low mileage dead skis.

I would like to add, that although my skis are all modern per-se, the race skis are built the old fashioned way, with steel and wood.....so I would think at the very least maybe these should be stored in such a way as to assist the camber and not resist it.

Thoughts?
post #2 of 23
I'm pretty sure that new skis are shipped base to topsheet, with the camber allowing for a spooning effect...

No real personal experience here, but it seems to make the most sense to me (and that is how they are always laid out at the shops).

That being said, here is how I look at the summer storage. Leave the bindings alone, the spring is not going to wear out any more/less storing it in tension/compression then it will cranking it up and down each year. I don't turn down the suspension on my car, why turn down the DIN on my skis.

Every time you ski, or every time you lock the brakes together, the camber (built into the ski) is being stressed. Store them in a rack with the bindings down, in a cool and dry environment. Don't do this in a hot space, like an attic or garage rafters, or you'll have some huge camber come fall. Composites creep under internal and external stresses, and they always will. Using that, you have some leeway to play with things a little.
post #3 of 23
krp is correct in noting that skis are not springs, they are composite structures. The fact that they are bonded together in a press makes them prime to lose camber as adhesives and the various materials (some cured into shape) relax over time.

You can store skis base to base without locking the brakes completely. In fact, that's how I store my skis during the season in the garage. They are base to base and standing up against the wall, with brakes partially interlocked under the influence of gravity. I only snap them together all the way when I put them in the car or a ski bag for travel.

There are a lot more significant threats to ski camber than storage. For instance, many people get frequent shop grinds and that can kill a ski in 1-2 seasons. As long as the skis are stored in a room temperature location and under no tension/compression other than the effects of gravity, they should be fine.

Camber varies a lot among ski brands and models nowadays. Some new skis have a lot of camber, some very little (tends to be an inverse of the sidecut depth, but not always). So be careful when comparing camber amongst different model skis. Just because one ski is a lot flatter than another one doesn't mean it's lost camber.
post #4 of 23
Strap the tips and tails together with a block of in the center area between the skis. Maybe soak them in the bathtub with warm water to really get the camber to set back in. Finish off with a layer of pine tar.
post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by krp8128 View Post
I'm pretty sure that new skis are shipped base to topsheet, with the camber allowing for a spooning effect...
Many are but not all. Some skis are packed individually with their binding between two facing topsheets these days.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Voltron
Strap the tips and tails together with a block of in the center area between the skis. Maybe soak them in the bathtub with warm water to really get the camber to set back in. Finish off with a layer of pine tar.
I LOLed.
post #6 of 23
I have been storing my skis by standing them up against a wall individually with the binding springs screwed down to the lowest tension. Can't hurt and it might help.

So far, I haven't had any skis get material fatigue prematurely or bindings release too easily.
post #7 of 23
People used to store them with a tennis ball in the middle to hold the camber. That was also back when everyone used to get their name engraved on the skis though because they figured they'd have them for ten years.
I must say I tend to think it's not a bad idea.
Quote:
Strap the tips and tails together with a block of in the center area between the skis. Maybe soak them in the bathtub with warm water to really get the camber to set back in. Finish off with a layer of pine tar. -voltron
post #8 of 23
My 1972 vintage Kneissl Red Stars hung in the garage with the brakes locked together for the entire 18 years I was away from skiing. My K2 710 Comps had brakes that allowed the normal camber with the brakes locked. Several other pair of skis hung with the runaway straps tied around them, closing the camber. When I started skiing again, I took them all down and they all popped back out to their original camber. I think what decambers a ski is deep flexing them through many days of use. Just hangin' 'em on the wall won't do anything significant. I honestly don't believe I would ever be able to decamber my Head 720's.
post #9 of 23
^^ well said.

Skiing a ski will decamber it before leaning them against the wall.

Racers don't replace their dead skis because they've been sitting around and lost their energy. Those skis get skied into the ground and lose energy in just a few months.
post #10 of 23
I have had a two pair of Stockli's come from the factory almost flat.

They were fine.

One was a Junior SL that was flat from day one. When I gave them to a friend for his kid and he went to have the bindings set, he said the shop told him they were "dead" so he threw them out.

Dumb!

The other was a "soft" SL cut adult ski .... it just didn't need the camber and "pop" that a full race ski would. It was a high end .... limited edition .... ski .... so it wasn't a matter of QC problems.
post #11 of 23
If you lock the ski bases together such that they are flat you are decambering the skis for a long period of time. Why do that?
post #12 of 23
I change skis LONG before they decamber anyway (who doesn't??). I also think people worry about things too much.

I've always stored my skis base-to-base witht the bindings locked and have never noticed an issue season to season.
post #13 of 23
Out of superstition more than anything else, I never lock brakes. I'm too lazy to crank bindings down, so I've joined the "doesn't matter" faction on that. I have had one pair of skis decamber over the years, but that just gave me a great reason to buy a new pair.
post #14 of 23
Rich,
whatever you do, make sure you get this figured out as soon as possible! If you are going to continue to rotate through your quiver of 4 or 5 pairs of skis on 7 or 8 ski days per year, it will be CRUCIAL that they have the proper camber!
post #15 of 23
Thread Starter 
As soon as I saw a response posted by U.P Racer, I knew that it was going to be just another waste of bandwidth......how predictable.
post #16 of 23
I'd have to agree with UPR though - at least in my case... I'm lucky to get in much more than 20 days a year on a normal year. I have (usually) about 5 set of skis. I'll never wear them out before I get tired of them.

Add a couple pair of tele skis now, and I shouldn't need to worry too much about the drop in the value of the dollar.
post #17 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Richie-Rich View Post
As soon as I saw a response posted by U.P Racer, I knew that it was going to be just another waste of bandwidth......how predictable.
I'm working on it, though..... maybe someday I'll be able to contribute to this site with meaningful, thought provoking and knowledgeable posts like we frequently see from Richie-Rich.
post #18 of 23
MY thugs are starting to get some reversed in the tip, this makes me happy. they will ski powder better.
post #19 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by axebiker View Post
I'd have to agree with UPR though - at least in my case... I'm lucky to get in much more than 20 days a year on a normal year. I have (usually) about 5 set of skis. I'll never wear them out before I get tired of them.

Add a couple pair of tele skis now, and I shouldn't need to worry too much about the drop in the value of the dollar.
All the more reason to know the proper way to store them. Think about it, if your skis spend more time stored and clamped together than on the slopes wouldn't it just piss you off that your low mileage skis are decambered before your first base grind...and not because you skied the piss out of them?:

I am not concernend with the resale value of my skis, and I do not buy and sell my skis every year or every other year like many here. That being said I want them to keep performing like new as long as possible......I try not to be wasteful, if a simple step will better preserve my skis, why not do it?

There are people, I am guessing like UPR, who dont take care about what they own, whether it be their cars, clothes, house what have you, I am not one of those people.

As an aside, though some may see my large SUV selection as wasteful, I probably more than make up for it with the way I try to preserve my things as long as possible, thereby causing less waste; front end and back end.

Being wasteful is a big pet peeve of mine. I use up things till they are worthless, and try to keep them in service as long as possible, more often taking the repair rather than replace route.
post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Richie-Rich View Post
Being wasteful is a big pet peeve of mine. I use up things till they are worthless, and try to keep them in service as long as possible, more often taking the repair rather than replace route.
Yup. I'm too lazy to save wax the way you do, but I try to keep all my skis ready to go, even the ones I know probably aren't going out except on a whim.
post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Richie-Rich View Post
All the more reason to know the proper way to store them. Think about it, if your skis spend more time stored and clamped together than on the slopes wouldn't it just piss you off that your low mileage skis are decambered before your first base grind...and not because you skied the piss out of them?:
Well... yeah... but the likelyhood of that happening is exceptionally low. Just put a block between them... as it was mentioned. Some ski straps even come with 1inch thick foam blocks for this very purpose. Those that don't do this fall in the 99% group of owning skis that have never decambered due to storage. It's really not a very common thing to happen.

I do use a foam block, but I'm boarderline crazy.


I don't think anyone is advocating the other end of this argument. :
post #22 of 23
Again, in 20 years of skiing, this has never been an issue for me. I have bigger problems to worry about, and I guess maybe I just buy the right skis. My 10 year old Rossi that have been locked together since the day I mounted the bindings still have plenty camber.

Just lucky I guess.

But hey, just to humor this thread, I'll go downstair and unlock all the bindings from each other. I'm not so proud to say that it's not worth trying - not that I'll know the difference.
post #23 of 23
Made in China???




haha kidding!
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