Dumb Question (ski shop tune)

Discussion in 'Tuning Techniques and Tool Information' started by Shawn C., Oct 24, 2018.

  1. Shawn C.

    Shawn C. Putting on skis Skier

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    I started waxing last year and found it immensely enjoyable. However, I now need a shop tune to grind the bases on several pairs of mine and my wife's skis.

    You folks are always talking abut setting base and side edge angles. You'll say something like 2/1 tune (or whatever) and I honestly have no idea which edge you are talking about or even if the angle is acute or obtuse angle. Told you it was a dumb question!
    So, what exactly should I be having my ski shop do to my edges & bases for a yearly tune? Should I inquire as to what type of machine they are using? Should I de-tune the tips and tails? I love this section of the forum but honestly a lot of the threads leave me more confused than enlightened.

    I ski at Powder Mountain, UT which is 100% natural snow and ski mostly off trail so I don't think I need edges that are as dialed in as someone who encounters ice.
     
  2. François Pugh

    François Pugh Out on the slopes Skier

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    Friends don't let friends detune.
    Best to specify which number is for base and which is for base. Number is degrees from 90. For what you do a 1 base 3 side is good. For hard snow precision 0.5 base 3 side is good. For moggles 1 base 2 side works for me. Won't make much difference in softer Snow, ad you say.
    Greater side edge is more pointy, more acute.
    Greater base bevel is less pointy.
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2018
  3. Philpug

    Philpug Enjoying being back on two skis. Admin Pugski Ski Tester

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    Not a dumb question at all, as you say, it can be very confusing. the 2/1 that you refer to is edge angle but actually is a 1*/2*..with the first number being the base angle and the second being the side. Many suggest an acute (less than 90*) angle for a bevel verses a 1*/1* because it can displace snow but cutting into it verses a square edge can bounce, think of cutting with a sharp knife verses a dull one. Bevel numbers can get into fractions too, specifically with someone who wants more precision like from a race. You might hear base bevels being as low as a .5* or .75* and side bevels at a 3*, so a .5*/3* would be a very aggressive angle that you might find on a SL (slalom) ski for a skier that is looking for the most precision. That type of edge angle for the ski that you are referring to would make that ski very nervous, bordering on unskiable, yes a half of a degree can make that much of a difference.

    [​IMG]
     
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  4. KingGrump

    KingGrump Most Interesting Man In The World Team Gathermeister

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    My experience is that doesn't matter how much you talk to the tech and/or ask questions at the shop. They will nod their head and say all the right things. I the end, You are going to get their standard tune. Quality will vary from shop. Some good, lots bad and some indifferent.

    Some shops will sell you a "Race tune". It will cost you a premium for a "superior" product. Seen some good work and some not. YMMV.
    It is a trial and error thing. We are dealing humans after all. Find a good shop and stick with them.
     
  5. sparty

    sparty Booting up Skier

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    I'd expect that most shops would tune to 2/1 (two degrees of side bevel, one degree of base bevel) on anything other than a race ski, unless they got a specific request otherwise. If you are having a shop tune your skis and want something other than 2/1, or if you want a race ski tuned other than 3/1, I'd recommend writing the bevel request very clearly on the topskin of the ski where a stoned, drunk, and half-asleep tech can't miss it.

    Part of the reason for having more side edge angle on a race ski is that, in normal use cases, a race ski will be used at a higher edge angle; the more edge angle, the more side-edge bevel you want. I believe that 4- and 5-degree side-edge angles are common at higher levels of racing, but that also requires tuning more frequently (on hard snow / ice, even two or three runs can dull a three-degree edge enough to be noticable). If you don't know why you want a particular bevel, sticking with 2/1 is probably a good bet; 1/1 might also work for you, but I find that feels dull. YMMV.

    Even if you regularly ski soft snow, if you encounter hard snow at all, having sharp edges is hugely helpful. It may be as simple as a firm traverse into a soft couloir, but I found that I was a lot more confident in mixed conditions last spring after taking better care of my off-piste skis.
     
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  6. Dwight

    Dwight Practitioner of skiing, solid and liquid Admin Moderator

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    Just to reiterate, tunes are stated, BASE/EDGE angle. So normal is 1/2. Unless you give it to me in Wisconsin, it will be 1/3.
     
  7. BGreen

    BGreen Out on the slopes Skier

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    Unless you spend all your time on really hard snow, stick with a 2* side edge. It’s sharp enough and far more durable than a 3* edge.
     
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  8. surfsnowgirl

    surfsnowgirl Instructor, newbie Subaru driver and winter lover Skier

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    I always go with 1/3 tune on my narrower skis and for the fatter ones I usually stick with a 1/2. I tend to keep my 80-90 underfoot skis at a 1/3 tune if there's any chance I'm hitting solid stretches of hard pack.
     
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  9. jmeb

    jmeb Stereotypical Front Range Weekend Warrior Skier

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    See this all the time.

    Friends don't let friends not detune their tip and tails if they are skiing rockered skis in 3d snow (which is my guess if you're skiing PowMo). Otherwise all those tips and tails are going to do is catchy unnecessarily on piles of snow. Detuning through the contact length is different and primarily only for park skis or super specific powder skis.

    Indy ski companies that care about how their off-piste focused skis ski right out of the wrapper detune tips and tails from the factory. And a good shop will as well. Race and piste skis? No detuning necessary. Different tuning for different ski conditions.

    As ON3Ps CEO said:

    As for the edge angle -- personally preference. I like 1/2 for most skiing out west. Thought that will require an edge set as many manufacturers ship with 1/1.
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2018
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  10. Steve

    Steve Ankler Skier

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    I just don't see how a sharp edge of the tip or tail can "catch" on soft snow.
     
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  11. silverback

    silverback Getting on the lift Skier

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    I am a PM skier. I think you want a 1/2. Where do you live? What kind of skis are they. Yes, my"indie" skis are terrible without a de-tune.
     
  12. jmeb

    jmeb Stereotypical Front Range Weekend Warrior Skier

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    "Catch" "hooky" -- lots of different names. In my experience it isn't an issue in untouched smooth powder. Where it matters is in cut up powder, crud, soft bumps, crusts where you have different densities of snow, and the ski edge is reacting differently as you ski through them. These different reactions are enhanced by a sharp edge. Add to that a sharp edge on a part of the ski that is reverse sidecut (aka taper) and it can make for a weird experience.
     
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  13. Marker

    Marker XLTL Skier

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    Both times I requested a 1/3 tune at different shops in different states on different all-mtn skis that had a 1/2 tune, I combined it with a base grind to freshen the base structure and got what I asked for. One was well done, the other needed a lot of polishing with diamond stones. Guess where I'm heading next time. We ski the east coast so needed the bite of a sharper edge. My cheater race skis (Rossi Hero Elite LT) came with 1/3 so just edge maintenance so far. Those skis rock on the firm. I can't see getting 1/3 for where you ski delivering much performance improvement. I don't detune.
     
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  14. AmyPJ

    AmyPJ Let's go! Pugski Ski Tester

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    1/3 is definitely overkill out here. I ski a 1/1 which many are horrified by, but I have been perfectly happy with it, and my boyfriend is the head ski tuner at Diamond Peak in Eden, and he's been at it for 20 years. He's seen it all. He subscribes to the KISS philosophy, and does a damned good job. I've seen him fix a lot of bad tunes from other places. So, I'd take them there, and make sure you get the most expensive tune they offer. (It's worth the extra $10 or whatever they charge.) Just know that they haven't fired the machines up yet for the season. He is planning on getting over there next week to get caught up on the stuff brought in during the summer.
     
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  15. François Pugh

    François Pugh Out on the slopes Skier

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    My Volant machete Gs came with a 1/1. I put a 1/2 on for while but am back to a 1/1 so as not to destroy the steel CAP. 1 2 does not cut it on ice, but 1 1 is good in truly soft snow.
     
  16. Steve

    Steve Ankler Skier

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    OK yeah, that makes sense. So not the soft snow, but the scratchy, crusty and hardish snow mixed in.
     
  17. Thread Starter
    TS
    Shawn C.

    Shawn C. Putting on skis Skier

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    I'm in Ogden right above Ogden High School.

    Skis are Fischer Ranger 98 (new, getting mounted soon), Fischer Motive 95, Elan Spectrum 105 ALU, Line Supernatural 100, and my wife's skis, Salomon Lux 88.
    I ski my Motive 95's when there hasn't been new snow for a while.

    The de-tuning makes sense for me as I do ski a bit of variable conditions during low snow periods. Manky, chalky, crusty leftovers for is fun but also a bit hooky at times.
     
  18. Thread Starter
    TS
    Shawn C.

    Shawn C. Putting on skis Skier

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    Awesome to know, Amy! Does he do a lot of the tuning himself or are there others as well. The kids up there are so young, but at least they don't look stoned out! Nice operation they have up there. I don't like Alpine Sports; too snobby. Love me some 2nd tracks but I take my tuning business elsewhere.

    Is Josh still there for boot fitting? I know you and others have spoken highly of him.

    Thanks to everyone for the informative replies!
     
  19. AmyPJ

    AmyPJ Let's go! Pugski Ski Tester

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    The kids upstairs are not the ones tuning. There is a seasoned group of guys who have been at it for years who come in every evening to do the day's work. You won't see them upstairs, because they are only there to tune. And yes, Josh is still there and he is fantastic at the boot fitting. Biggest thing is getting an appointment with him--it's not easy as he's always booked! He does some of the tuning when needed, too.
     
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  20. headybrew

    headybrew surrender to the flow Skier

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    So it this the only reason to stay with a 1/2 instead of a 1/3? Durability and life of the ski? I ski WP and Luv mostly and even on soft packed powder which is most of my skiing I prefer the 1/3 angles. For what it's worth I am not a slarvy skier, I like to feel the edges engage and laying down RR tracks on the groomers below the bowls and trees is fun even on rockered skis.

    Any idea on how much the life of a ski is reduced with the sharper angle? Is it 10 tunes or 100?
     
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