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Self-Servicing Skis - Is it worth doing?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Now that we have our own ski apartment ,I am wondering if its worth while to have the equipment and to make the time to service my own skis. I have never self-serviced skis in the past. My main driver for wanting to do this is so that I can prepare skis, when I arrive in the evening, before my fist day on the slopes. In the past I would ski the first day on non-serviced skis and drop them off for an overnight service after day 1, and would top up with a shop wax mid week if necessary.

It is hard / time consuming to do properly or am I better off continuing to leave it to the pros at the ski shop?

What equipment would I need and could someone recommend a good kit that has everything I need?

Is there a temporary measure I can use to get me though the first day on better skis and then leave at shops/

Thanks
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
It's an easy job once you've learnt what to do. With little practice I can easily get through 4 or 5 pairs in a day.

Get all you need here:
http://pisteoffice.co.uk/
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Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@Ozboy

https://thepisteoffice.com

that's all you need , Jon can teach you how and supply all the equip needed , its a very worthwhile job both in terms of cost and quality , and also extending the lifetime of your skis
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It's really easy, otherwise I wouldn't be able to do it.

I'd say I can get a pair edged and waxed in well under 30 minutes. Other minor surgery (filling holes etc) doesn't take too long at all.

Don't ask me to mount a binding though. Skullie
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@Mosha Marc, that reminds me I've never told your QK inserts story Laughing
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I was also thinking this, but more along the lines of just maintaining the edges. Seems fairly simple, but not sure I want to go the whole hog and buy all the equipment needed for a full service
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@Ozboy, @Bennisboy, It's easy. There is a big outlay intially to get the correct kit. As others have said https://thepisteoffice.com is the place to go. The biggest two expenses will be a vice and an iron. Worth spending the money as they will last you a long time.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
ski wrote:
The biggest two expenses will be a vice and an iron. Worth spending the money as they will last you a long time.


And it's simple enough to fashion something so you don't need the vice...although I still ended up buying one.

If you're doing edges then you may as well learn to do the waxing as that's the easiest bit.
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If you just want to do the simplest dressing of the edges to get a clean sharp setup, then one of these will easily do it manually.

https://www.snowinn.com/ski-store/toko-edge-tuner/41736/p?utm_source=google_products&utm_medium=merchant&id_producte=210676&country=uk&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI9-Cq-sXU3gIVzb3tCh1CKAlPEAQYAiABEgJuw_D_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

But as the other's already posted, the piste office is going to give you the most informed and equipped view of complete servicing.
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I bought an edge sharpener from decathlon and I use an old travel iron and just let the sole get warm..not hot.. wipe off the old wax and let cool sharpen the edges and then rub the sole with wax so you can see a build up (assuming I haven got any scrapes or gouges ) and then run the iron over the sole and the wax melts onto the sole let it dry and brush off the excess with a stiff brush.. If you have any scrapes I drip the wax into them and then sand them smooth with very fine wet and dry sandpaper ...works for me ....but I am sure I will be shot down by lots of Snowheads Toofy Grin
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Suspect you'll get a darn better job doing it yourself and save on the life of your skis too. Dead easy to do with a bit of practice and I would never let anyone else do mine now BUT do you really want to do that after a day of travelling ?

That wasn't your question though, so in answer I would say yes do it, yes eventually it will save you money & it can be as quick or as long as you like. I can wax mine, let cool, scrape and brush easily in a couple of hours (which includes a big break for the cooling aspect). If you want to be able to cleanly slice apples in the air with the edges of the skis then that takes longer.

Once you start, I doubt you'll look back. Be warned though the first time will take a while because you'll be stripping back the top sheet and bringing your edges up to spec. Future will be a lot quicker. Watch out for edge angle as well as I suspect the last shop visit would have set them to whatever edge the machine was on.

I started with this set https://thepisteoffice.com/index.php/the-piste-office-store/tuning-equipment-kits/advanced-tuning-kit-with-waxing-iron-detail.html and also the vice set https://thepisteoffice.com/index.php/the-piste-office-store/vices-benches-retainers/kunzmann-profi-3-piece-ski-vice-detail.html although if buying again I'd get the beast vice instead. Oh and an edge planer.

Looks like a lot of expense but I have 5 sets of skis at home, go on 3 holiday a year and ski all year round at the snowdome. So probably 5 shop services a year as a comparison plus at least 12 waxes so within 2 years I'm quids in. Reality is I've bought more stuff than those kits plus lots of wax so I'd say more likely 3 years but now that kit is there for many more and what else are you going to get for Christmas ?
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
How long does each waxing last, if you ski say a few hours a day?
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
peter_h wrote:
How long does each waxing last, if you ski say a few hours a day?


Until you can be bothered doing it again.

If you are racer thay's one run. If you're a ski bum 2-3 weeks.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
My skis have never been done since I bought them 3 years ago Smile

Some mad skier told me I must buy the waxing kit, so I did some digging and bought the XCman brush kit and the Toko iron. It was pretty cheap an amazon, so I can waste many happy hours watching youtube videos on how to do it Smile
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Ozboy,


I think that if it were a pure financial decision then long term servicing your own skis makes financial sense but it from your post it looks as though your servicing time will eat into your holiday time in which case I would question the logic of spending valuable skiing/drinking/eating/sleeping time servicing skis.

It would seem that most Snowheads here who talk about servicing their skis either live in resort or transport their skis so that they service them in non-holiday time.

There is no doubt that servicing your own skis is very satisfying and being able to spend the time doing a good job on them has a therapeutic element to it. I'm not sure that the thought of arriving at night and having to service skis before I feel happy to take them out would be what I wanted from owning an apartment.

If I were leaving skis in resort then I would probably have them serviced by a shop one or two nights before returning each time and then either topping up with Zardoz or another shop wax if necessary before servicing again at the end of the holiday
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Thanks all for your feedback and advice. Had a very brief look at thepisteoffice site and will look deeper on the weekend as there seems to be a lot of info.

@Timc, You are right that time is a premium. We get in late on a Thursday or Friday and leave on last flight on Sunday.

Are there any good wax options available that I can just rub in by hand to get me through day 1? I can then service myself or drop off at a shop at the ene of the day.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Ozboy:
Your ‘one day’ question: for a stopgap one day wax up, I’ve found it can effectively be done with a Notwax swipe.
Single-Use NOTwax Speed Swipes: - http://www.zardoznotwax.com/products/single-use-notwax-speed-swipes
Not checked recently if you can still get these online cheap/easy - I’ve still got a couple left from a 6 pack I bought 2 years ago.
I stash one in ski jacket pocket - easy to apply even during an on-mountain stop.
If not, there’s the puck: - http://www.zardoznotwax.com/products/notwax-pocket-puck
If all it is is the edges are a bit dull, you could always pack a hardware diamond stone plus an angle, or a proprietary edge tool as others have mentioned. Madeye-Smiley
(Edit: by the way, if you’re going to have your first go at the edges, it’s worth checking first what the manufacturer’s edge angles are for your particular skis, to be sure you choose the right tools to buy.)
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Quote:

We get in late on a Thursday or Friday and leave on last flight on Sunday.

Last thing I would want to do would be to wax skis. I would probably look at Zardoz NOTwax but I'm no expert I'm sure one will be along in a minute.
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spyderjon wrote:
@Mosha Marc, that reminds me I've never told your QK inserts story Laughing


Er. I don't think the peeps at snowheads would be remotely interested Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed Embarassed
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@Ozboy, More important than wax --- especially if you mostly ski on piste is to keep you edges in good nick. So get a diamond stone and give the edges some attention on the last day of your holiday. When you start the next one -- bang on some Zardoz and you are good to go. If you are there for just three days, I'd have a shop wax them (and if you have kept the edges good and no major holes that's all they will need) -- gives you more time to drink beer.
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@Mosha Marc, oh yes we would Very Happy
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@Ozboy,

I had similar questions to yourself; not sure if you have seen this thread http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=3279086
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I dont understand why you dont have a quiver then service most before leaving except one pair which are in use so the majority are ready for the next arrival ?
If you have a apartment rotate ski servicing on the quiver and then zardoz same as long stay

Diy ski servicing of base repairs and the even more technical edges requires tuition,good tools a workbench of sorts and practise not gained on 4 day trips.
Waxing is easier on clean based piste equipment but you still need the above .


Last edited by After all it is free Go on u know u want to! on Thu 15-11-18 14:57; edited 3 times in total
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Given you don't have your skis serviced every night at the moment, like most people, you're happy that a basic edge+wax service is fine for a week - and you're will only be getting 3 days use at a time. So learn to DIY and rather than worrying about having your skis in their best condition on Friday, service them on Friday evening over a beer.
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@Tirol 164, Not really interested in a quiver. I only have one set of 78mm 'all-mountian' skis which is my goto set for almost everything. Will be buying a wider set of powder skis at some point but will not be interchangeable for most days.

Based on the advice provided here in the short term I am going to use a Zardoz puck for day one and have them waxed or serviced overnight at the end of day 1. May look at self-servicing in the future once we are settled in a routine.
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@Ozboy, another vote for Spyderjon’s course but would advocate booking that in slow time in the summer, especially with what you ba e put above.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@Ozboy,

Your Question:

Answer = YES

Answer part 2 = SpyderJon absolutely
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
ski3 wrote:
@Mosha Marc, oh yes we would Very Happy


Oh well.

My Band of Buggers had planned a trip to Japan in February this year. We were going to do a bit of touring there too.

I'd scored a very nice pair of unused Volkl BMT 109's off interpaul on here for the trip and Jon had very kindly done a quick job of installing quiver killers for my Beast bindings. All set for the trip. Very Excited.

Got the skis home and popped the bindings on; things were very tight to say the least. Swearing at, and even hitting, the bindings was involved. Eventually got them on and decided to leave the mounted skis in a warm place for a bit; to encourage "hole migration".

A week later, it's now only four sleeps before the flight, I took the bindings off and remounted them. Less swearing and hitting than before, but still a very tight fit.

Gave Jon a shout and he suggested running a 5mm drill "through the holes" to slacken things off a smidge.

I wasn't listening too hard, but thought I'd better get a brand spanking top of the range 5mm drill bit for such an operation. Once the anodised gold beauty was obtained, I ran it through the QK inserts pronto; as Jon hadn't asked me to do. Being keen, I did this to all 16 inserts PDQ. Then tried to remount.

The bolts were definitely easier to locate - seeing as I'd just drilled out the threads from the inserts.

I got cold shivers down my spine as I realised what I'd done.

I may even have wee'd a bit.

Close to tears at this point I rang Jon again. He was very quickly close to tears himself, but at the other end of that spectrum. I think it was a full minute before he could stop laughing for long enough to call me a pillock. He pointed out, between fits of the giggles, that when he said holes he was referring to the ones on the binding plate.

He obviously couldn't believe I was that stupid, because he had me drive down to his place the following morning just so he could confirm it for himself.

However, overnight he'd dreamt up a cunning plan involving taps, heat guns and sacrificial lengths of brass screw with a left hand thread.

It worked.

Day saved.

But seriously; thank you again Jon for immediately putting aside a half day, at zero notice, to pull my nads out of the fire. An absolute diamond.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@Mosha Marc, snowHead snowHead
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Mosha Marc, brilliant. You should also give him top marks for not telling anyone, especially as if I have a hot piece of juicy goss that must be kept quiet, I would absolutely not tell Jon. Honest Toofy Grin Twisted Evil
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@Mosha Marc, Made my day snowHead Laughing
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
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@Mosha Marc, Christ, you had me sweating there too. Reminds me of a similar tale a day before I flew to France to do the Marmotte (a cycling event) when I managed to cross thread a pedal and had to phone around S.E. England trying to find a replacement set of pedals and cranks for the bike. Like you I was virtually in tears as I had trained months in preparation but fortunately I managed to find one and get it couriered to me. I had to take an unpaid day off work too so a rather expensive cock-up all in all
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Apparently RainX is the same as Zardoz. And a lot cheaper.
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Vaseline has top spot in the charts...... from another previous thread on here .
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Tirol 164 wrote:
Vaseline has top spot in the charts...... from another previous thread on here .

Do NOT put Vaseline on your skis!
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colinstone wrote:
Apparently RainX is the same as Zardoz. And a lot cheaper.

Laughing

If it's the same try wiping Zardoz over your windscreen - go on, I dare you.
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You can make your own DPS Phantom never wax again and save $100 per shot by mixing a bottle of Fairy Liquid, 2 melted cintronella tealights and 10ml of cat jizm.




I can't explain how the chemistry works and can't provide any double blind testing but trust me.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@Dave of the Marmottes,

The other Vaseline thread post is topping the charts
http://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=132562&start=40

Rain X is in No 2 spot


Your Cat jizm is now in No3 spot because its not available at Asda
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@Tirol 164, sure it is

Buy cat treats
Seduce local tomcat
Avoid having eyes clawed out
Profit
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I have just waxed my skis, as per all the youtube videos on how to do it, and they don't look any different to previously.

I had done 10 ski trips with them from new...

In one of the videos it says the surface should be so shiny you can see yourself in it. I can't achieve that, due to the surface texture of the material.
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