Things You Should Know: How to Tune Your Skis at Home

It’s that time of year again. Your skis have been rusting away in the garage and are probably beat up from dragging them through rock fields (and beer cans) on closing day last year.  Sure, you have some buddies who work at a ski shop and will tune them up for a 6 pack of beer. But, hey, it’s about time you learn to do it by yourself.  You are a strong, independent skier who don’t need no tech.  Not to mention – your ski bunny will want her sticks tuned too.

Things You Will Need:

  • Wax
  • P-Tex
  • Edge Tuning Tool
  • Towel
  • Scraper
  • Razor Blade
  • File
  • Lighter
  • Wire Brush
  • Iron
  • Diamond Stone
  • Scuff Pad

Gear Tip:

Get yourself a Dakine Tuning Kit that comes equipped with everything that you need!


First things first – Find yourself a sturdy table and a garage or basement that you don’t mind getting dirty.  If you have some base clamps to rest your skis on that is great.  If not – keep your skis raised on two even stacks of books!  Next – make sure that your brakes are pulled back.  Use elastic bands to hold brakes back on top of your skis.

BASE REPAIR

  1. Locate your dents/scratches on your skis and use your razor blade to remove any excess, loose base material from around the area.  It is important to have a clean area to add your p-tex.

2.  If there is any dirt or dust around the voids, use your wire brush to clean it out.

3.  Alright now you are ready to fill those holes!  Grab your p-tex stick and heat it up using your lighter.  After a few seconds, it should start to burn on it’s own.  Hold the stick over your scratches and let it drip into the seams.

4. When you are done filling your indents make sure to put the p-tex out on a safe surface.

5. After you let the p-tex cool, grab your razor blade and remove the excess p-tex to create a smooth, uniform surface.


EDGE WORK

  1. Start your edge work by detuning your tips and tail.  That’s right DE-tuning.  Use your file tool to round off the sharp edges on the sections of tips and tails of your skis that do not touch when skis are put together base to base or the sections on your snowboards tips and tails that don’t touch when placed on the ground base down.  Detuning is important to do when you buy a new pair of skis especially with skis and boards with early rise or rocker.  If you don’t detune you will experience “hooking up” during turns.  Trust us – that’s not as fun as it sounds.

2.  After filing, use your diamond stone to smooth and polish your edges.

3. Next, it is time to sharpen your base edges.  It is important that you sharpen your base edge first before you work on your side edges.

4. Remove any burrs or rust using your diamond stone.

5. Then use your edge tuning tool to sharpen your bases from tip to tail.  Use smooth, long strokes and overlap where you finish along the way.

6. After your base edges are sharp, follow the same instructions for your side edges making sure to do smooth strokes from tip to tail.


WAXING

  1. First, heat up your iron and use your wet towel to wipe down your skis.  It is important that your bases are clean before you wax.

2. Grab your wax and use your hot iron to melt the wax and dribble it evenly down your skis.  Use a generous amount because it is better to use more than less.  However the more you use the more you have to scrape later, so don’t go crazy.

3. Going from tip to tail, iron the wax onto your skis.  Make sure to continuously move the iron to not burn your base.

4. After the wax dries, use your plastic scraper to scrape the wax off your skis.  It may be easier to put your skis at a 45 degree angle for more leverage.

5. When you get all of the wax off your skis, use your brush and scuff pad to wipe off the scrapings and dust off.

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