EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Tuning, Maintenance and Repairs › Edge sharpening: when to use files vs. diamond stones
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Edge sharpening: when to use files vs. diamond stones

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
In maintaining sharp edges how do I know whether I need to start with a file vs. starting with a diamond stone?  My edge angles have already been set and I'm just trying to sharpen them up before my next ski trip.
post #2 of 26
Use files to more quickly establish edge geometry and when they get very chewed up and require a lot of material removal to fix. Use diamonds to maintain the edges and as your normal sharpening and polishing.
post #3 of 26
Always make a pass or two with a x-coarse diamond before using your file.
post #4 of 26
So if the edges aren't "chewed up" is there ever a reason to use the file again once the angles are set?
post #5 of 26
Not realy. If they are ok diamonds should do the trick

my usuall habits
Starting with a Sharp Ski
Ski
Check edges daily, deburr with diamond if needed, it usually takes just one pass.
After skiing, dry and oil them. to prevent rust.

Blunt ski
Oxid stone to remove hardened pieces or a coarse diamond
Lots of chewing / rust > mill file
Diamond file medium
Diamond file fine
Diamond file xfine / Ceramic stone xxfine
Deburr / Detune
Polish.

And oil them to prevent rust. It is not real oil special stuff.

 

post #6 of 26
Prosper -

You should always start with a diamond stone.  It will take care of any case hardened spots from a rock that your file would just skip over.

The progression for a sharp, polished edge:

1)  100 grit diamond.  Moonflex makes an excellent one.  If your edge feels sharp after the 100 grit, skip the file and just use the stones, you'll save your edges.

2)  File - get an Icecut file or other super high quality file.  Hardware store files don't do well on ski edge metal.  Be sure the teeth of the file are at approximately a 45 degree angle to the ski edge.  Depending on which way you put the file in the bevel tool it will typically be 45 or 90.  With the file at 90 degrees it doesn't cut very well. 

3)  400 grit diamond.

4)  600 grit diamond.  Either the 400 or 600 is fine, you don't really need both.

5) Ceramic or surgical stone.  They claim a highly polished edge will stay sharp longer.

Instead of buying high priced "secret sauce" you can just use lots of water when sharpening edges.  A plastic cup that will hold your stones/file when in your edge bevel guide works great, just put it in there between each pass to remove metal filings.  Also, use a spray bottle with water to spritz the edge before each pass.  Use a folded up paper towel to wipe the edge after each pass.  You don't want to work any metal filings into your base while sharpening.  The other option is to tape the base with masking tape, but I like wiping the edge with the paper towel between each pass - you see what you are removing and it clears everything off the edge so on the next pass the stone works better.

Consider wearing a glove - one slip and you will lay the base of your thumb wide open.  I have my own scars but I saw a guy at a race peel back a layer of skin looked like a fillayed fish - ugly!  Lots of stitches.

Probably more info than you were looking for.  Good luck and enjoy carving ice on those super sharp edges! 

BST
post #7 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ivo Verhaar View Post

Not realy. If they are ok diamonds should do the trick

my usuall habits
Starting with a Sharp Ski
Ski
Check edges daily, deburr with diamond if needed, it usually takes just one pass.
After skiing, dry and oil them. to prevent rust.

Blunt ski
Oxid stone to remove hardened pieces or a coarse diamond
Lots of chewing / rust > mill file
Diamond file medium
Diamond file fine
Diamond file xfine / Ceramic stone xxfine
Deburr / Detune
Polish.

And oil them to prevent rust. It is not real oil special stuff.

 


 

Ivo - what is your special stuff?  Oil would contaminate the base and prevent wax from absorbing.
post #8 of 26
I use a little chunk of red wax over the edges right after skiing. Seems to inhibit rust.

Rick H
post #9 of 26
I'd just about ditto this right down to the cup of water (i use a few drops of soap too)   I may not wipe after each pass.  only when it's necessary, but on a regular basis.  Nice job Basement Tech!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Basement Ski Tech View Post

Prosper -

You should always start with a diamond stone.  It will take care of any case hardened spots from a rock that your file would just skip over.

The progression for a sharp, polished edge:

1)  100 grit diamond.  Moonflex makes an excellent one.  If your edge feels sharp after the 100 grit, skip the file and just use the stones, you'll save your edges.

2)  File - get an Icecut file or other super high quality file.  Hardware store files don't do well on ski edge metal.  Be sure the teeth of the file are at approximately a 45 degree angle to the ski edge.  Depending on which way you put the file in the bevel tool it will typically be 45 or 90.  With the file at 90 degrees it doesn't cut very well. 

3)  400 grit diamond.

4)  600 grit diamond.  Either the 400 or 600 is fine, you don't really need both.

5) Ceramic or surgical stone.  They claim a highly polished edge will stay sharp longer.

Instead of buying high priced "secret sauce" you can just use lots of water when sharpening edges.  A plastic cup that will hold your stones/file when in your edge bevel guide works great, just put it in there between each pass to remove metal filings.  Also, use a spray bottle with water to spritz the edge before each pass.  Use a folded up paper towel to wipe the edge after each pass.  You don't want to work any metal filings into your base while sharpening.  The other option is to tape the base with masking tape, but I like wiping the edge with the paper towel between each pass - you see what you are removing and it clears everything off the edge so on the next pass the stone works better.

Consider wearing a glove - one slip and you will lay the base of your thumb wide open.  I have my own scars but I saw a guy at a race peel back a layer of skin looked like a fillayed fish - ugly!  Lots of stitches.

Probably more info than you were looking for.  Good luck and enjoy carving ice on those super sharp edges! 

BST
post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Basement Ski Tech View Post...
Consider wearing a glove - one slip and you will lay the base of your thumb wide open.  I have my own scars but I saw a guy at a race peel back a layer of skin looked like a fillayed fish - ugly!  Lots of stitches.
...

BST

I'm curious.  What will cut your thumb to the point of needing stitched while tuning a ski? The ski?  A diamond stone?  A file?  I'm not saying it can't happen.  I just never though of anything I could do while tuning that could result in a trip to the ER.
post #11 of 26
Use the diamond stone first to break up the case hardened edges the the file. If  you use the file first and it skips over part of the edge, that is the section that is case hardened.  After the file, the last pass can be with a stone or a gummi bar to remove all burrs. I always wear gloves when sharpening and waxing.  I have also filleted my fingers at the start of a race some 40 years ago.  That was a real cutting edge on the downhills.
post #12 of 26
You are right oil is not desired. i used wax before and switched over to Zardoz notwax (which is still used for my bases as a top coat) to prevent rust.

But i am switching over to the combo of Solda Metal jet / Steel jet for this season. 

Steel Jet is a paste which is used to polish your edges and make them smoother faster and more dense less prown to rust. Dressing is done with an arkansas stone, but i think i will try ceramics.
Metal jet is a coating which is used to prevent snow sticking to the steel.
Both seem to be liked by european racers.
Some links:
Steel Jet : http://www.skibartlett.com/solda-steel-jet-paste-1620-p.asp
Metal Jet: http://www.skibartlett.com/solda-metal-jet-1619-p.asp
post #13 of 26
 and yeah definitely get some gloves! and something with long sleeves. if you skid you never know what part will be cut up first.
post #14 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn View Post




I'm curious.  What will cut your thumb to the point of needing stitched while tuning a ski? The ski?  A diamond stone?  A file?  I'm not saying it can't happen.  I just never though of anything I could do while tuning that could result in a trip to the ER.
 

It's not the stone or the file ... it's the edge that does the damage.
I have several bad cuts and one major gash from the edge, and will not tune my skis without gloves anymore.  It is mainly when sharpening the side edge when the ski is in the vise with the base facing away.  When the file or stone slips off the edge, your thumb is in the perfect position to take the hit.  And with a sharp edge, some downward pressure, and sliding motion ... it is a recipe for disaster,
post #15 of 26
Especially be carefull when using a mill file, they take a bit more power and even a dusty floor can get tricky. 
A set of eather welding gloves (high sleeves) protect your hands and your wrists, have some scars which learned me too. 
post #16 of 26
and of course, don't forget the helmet.....  you never know when you might slip on these filings and smash your head on the garage floor....
post #17 of 26
 LOL, absolutely correct!
post #18 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn View Post




I'm curious.  What will cut your thumb to the point of needing stitched while tuning a ski? The ski?  A diamond stone?  A file?  I'm not saying it can't happen.  I just never though of anything I could do while tuning that could result in a trip to the ER.

 

The edges themselves can cut you. If they are sharp you will get a clean cut like when you carve a turkey. I watched a racer (a doctor) stitch the coach's thumb from a nasty cut while sharpening skis. I've known people to slip and cut tendons on extra sharp race skis. No fooling. Wear gloves.

If your edges are in poor condition, you'll get a nasty scrape, kind of like road rash. Gloves are good when scraping wax, too, as if your hand slips off the scraper or when the scraper slips off the tail of the ski there is a fair chance you'll abrade or cut yourself, too.
post #19 of 26
BTW, I know it's been asked 1M times, but what edging guide are you using? From what I've seen of the plastic type guides, I don't see how they could possibly do a 1* edge +/- whatever. Maybe I'm just a skeptic.
post #20 of 26
I use a Sun Valley Tools Pro Edge Beveler with a spring clamp instead of the integrated clamp. The spring clamp makes for quick, easy stone changes.
post #21 of 26
I use a Beast edge bevel tool.  I like the interchangeable inserts for different degrees of bevel.  Like MastersRacer I use a spring clamp instead of the integrated clamp for faster file changes.

I just can't bring myself to run a gummi stone down the edge after I'm done - seems like it dulls it.  I run my thumbnail down the edge and if I feel something then I will use the gummi on that spot.

Good to know I'm not the only klutz who is sporting nasty thumb scars!
post #22 of 26
Quote:
 
My edge angles have already been set and I'm just trying to sharpen them up before my next ski trip.
You always need a guide except for hand stoning any raised burrs that rocks have knocked out in your edges, and a stone with a guide is better.  The rock pushes the metal out and work hardens it, not case hardens.  In any case, that part of your edge steel is harder than a file and needs to be removed either by an abrasive stone or a diamond file.

What is your goal?  Just clean, sharp edges for daily skiing?  All you need is a guide for the correct angles, a hard file made for ski edges plus a file handle, a coarse or medium diamond file, and a fine abrasive stone.  For the bottom, you just want to remove burrs, you don't want to remove metal.  That's the job of the yearly shop tune.  On the sides, you need to remove burrs first, then remove lots of metal with the file if absolutely needed, then smooth with the diamonds, then polish with the stone.  It should only take a few swipes with each.  It is best to stroke from tip to tail.  The file must only contact the edge in the cutting direction.  With the file tang & handle in your right hand, push.  With the file tang & handle in your left hand, pull (draw filing).  Don't let the file drag on the return stroke--it dulls the file teeth.  A few low nicked spots are OK for rec sking (we aren't racing on ice, are we?) as long as there are no raised nicks.  If the edge is sharp enough to drag material from your thumbnail, quit.

A good routine is to coat the edges with a black felt tip marker.  As you sharpen you can easily see what is cut away and what isn't.  The tip about water or secret sauce is to coat the diamond file and abrasive stone so it doesn't get loaded (pores filled) with the steel and fiberglass from the ski edges.

What are the correct angles?  I like 1° on the bottom edges and 3° on the side edges.  Others like 1° & 2°.  Whatever, find out what the shop did and keep those angles unless you have a reason to change them.  Buy guides for the angles you like.
post #23 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Basement Ski Tech View Post

Prosper -

You should always start with a diamond stone.  It will take care of any case hardened spots from a rock that your file would just skip over.

The progression for a sharp, polished edge:

1)  100 grit diamond.  Moonflex makes an excellent one.  If your edge feels sharp after the 100 grit, skip the file and just use the stones, you'll save your edges.

2)  File - get an Icecut file or other super high quality file.  Hardware store files don't do well on ski edge metal.  Be sure the teeth of the file are at approximately a 45 degree angle to the ski edge.  Depending on which way you put the file in the bevel tool it will typically be 45 or 90.  With the file at 90 degrees it doesn't cut very well. 

3)  400 grit diamond.

4)  600 grit diamond.  Either the 400 or 600 is fine, you don't really need both.

5) Ceramic or surgical stone.  They claim a highly polished edge will stay sharp longer.

Instead of buying high priced "secret sauce" you can just use lots of water when sharpening edges.  A plastic cup that will hold your stones/file when in your edge bevel guide works great, just put it in there between each pass to remove metal filings.  Also, use a spray bottle with water to spritz the edge before each pass.  Use a folded up paper towel to wipe the edge after each pass.  You don't want to work any metal filings into your base while sharpening.  The other option is to tape the base with masking tape, but I like wiping the edge with the paper towel between each pass - you see what you are removing and it clears everything off the edge so on the next pass the stone works better.

Consider wearing a glove - one slip and you will lay the base of your thumb wide open.  I have my own scars but I saw a guy at a race peel back a layer of skin looked like a fillayed fish - ugly!  Lots of stitches.

Probably more info than you were looking for.  Good luck and enjoy carving ice on those super sharp edges! 

BST

Follow up to my post:  I never addressed the base edge.  As others have mentioned, you can't do much with it otherwise you no longer have a 0.5 degree or 1.0 degree or what ever it was set at.  Remove base edge material and you change the set up. 

After performing the process in my original post, you will have pushed up/created a tiny ridge of metal on the base edge.  It makes the edge super sharp to the touch.  The back of your fingernail will catch and not want to slide at all (90 degree to the edge).  The fact is that little ridge does make the ski sharper - but not faster.  On injected World Cup Slalom courses they will leave it to get the extra grip.  For free skiing you might as well leave it on and enjoy the Ginzu knife sharpness.  However, for racing non-injected courses it will slow the ski down.

Since you only want to remove the tiny ridge you created and not base edge material, a polishing stone is the ticket.  A base bevel guide helps.  If you have a radial tuned ski you can just use a 1.0 degree or free hand.

Exception!  One of my kids just returned from a 4 day FIS race. The slalom skis got thrown in the team trailer and sat for a couple days during the GS races and ride home.  With the warm weather all the snow on the skis and ski ties melted and rusted the edges.  ARRRGH!  Just amazing how bad it can be after just a couple days. 

I used a 600 grit diamond to remove rust and polished with a surgical stone.  Its tough to see a perfectly tuned pair of skis come back rusted or with edges narled by rocks, but that is part of the deal.  I tell myself the skis are to be used (cared for) and used up.  Its better they are trashing skis than the family car!
 
Bottom line on the bottom edge of the ski - a little polish, but not much else...or its time for a stone grind (and the whole fickin hot box break in deal).

BST
post #24 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prosper View Post

In maintaining sharp edges how do I know whether I need to start with a file vs. starting with a diamond stone?  My edge angles have already been set and I'm just trying to sharpen them up before my next ski trip.

The following 'in process' school video project may provide you and others with visual aids and another perspective on diamonds, files and edge tuning.

For those parents whose teenager knows more than you do for all things technical, here is:

Edge Tuning-So Easy even an Adult Can Do It


Edited by Alpinord - 1/19/10 at 8:21am
post #25 of 26
Very nice job there young man!
post #26 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn View Post




I'm curious.  What will cut your thumb to the point of needing stitched while tuning a ski? The ski?  A diamond stone?  A file?  I'm not saying it can't happen.  I just never though of anything I could do while tuning that could result in a trip to the ER.
 

The edge did this
http://www.epicski.com/forum/thread/81460/how-to-tune-a-edges

I still don't wear gloves but I am much more careful now.
Edited by jbuhl - 1/19/10 at 11:51am
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Tuning, Maintenance and Repairs
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Tuning, Maintenance and Repairs › Edge sharpening: when to use files vs. diamond stones