Stonegrinding for spring.
END Check your spring race tune BY JACK MOORE of Season Special
DURING THE WINTER, your race skis are subjected to a lot of wear
and tear. As we head into spring, it’s a good time to double-check their
condition to make sure they’re ready to rocket through the remainder of
the race season.
Flat is Where It’s At
First, make sure that snow abrasion hasn’t affected the flatness of your ski
base. Snow can
be as abrasive as
grind away base
material. Use a
true bar to check
for any concavity or convexity
from tip to tail
along the ski base. If you detect any, consider having the skis stoneground
at a reputable race shop, or do the job yourself with a handheld base-flat-tening tool.
An undesirable convex base with excessive base edge bevel.
Is Your Bevel on the Level?
While you have your true bar handy, also check the bevel angle of your
base edges (see chart on the next page). Many racers unintentionally over-
bevel base edges while performing routine maintenance during the ski
season. If you regularly deburr and polish edges using diamond stones,
for example, you can easily transform a crisp 1/2-degree base bevel to a
sloppy 3-degree (or greater) bevel. This will greatly reduce your ability to
make quick edge changes or carve turns with confidence — especially on
An undesirable concave base.
Suction is a Drag
Base structure can
be another victim
of snow abrasion.
As the springtime
sun climbs higher
in the sky and more
daily solar radiation
blasts the slopes, the snowpack gets warmer and wetter. While a certain
amount of water under your skis provides good lubricity that accelerates
glide, too much water creates suction that steals precious speed. An adequate and appropriate base structure helps deter this (similar to tread
on car tires that offsets water in the road), but worn or excessive structure can slow you down. Check with a knowledgeable race technician or
shop to determine if your base structure is in good shape for the spring