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Forget Putting Summer Wax on those Bases

Tue, May  22, 2007 - By Mike Muha

Every spring, some of us follow the post-season routine of preparing for summer. That routine includes cleaning skis and putting a protective coat of wax on the bases to protect them over the summer, and putting klisters in the freezer. I've already written about this so I won't repeat it.

Of course, this spring, I have yet to start the spring ritual, and I bet many of you haven't either. I promise to head into my wax room right after I write this article - I want to make sure my new skis don't oxidize over the summer. Even more, I need to reclaim all the space taken up by skis leaning against the wall. I've already had one accident where skis went sliding to the floor after being knocked.

One alternative is to get someone else to summer wax your skis for you! I see two alternatives:

  1. Do a quicky wax job on your skis, then put them into a friend's hot box. Of course, this still means you have to do some waxing...
  2. Send them off for a base grind and waxing.

The second option came to mind when I found out Zach Caldwell of Engineered Tuning was moving to Canada later this year. (Zach did a beautiful job on two pair of Fischer Carbonlites for me this past winter).

A pair or two of your skis are probably in desperate need of base rejuvenation. They don't hold wax well anymore or the bases are no longer flat. Instead of waiting for the last moment as ski season approaches, why don't you get them ground now and have them ready to go at first snow?

Full disclosure: Zach advertises on this site, so I'm certainly going put in a specific plug for him. Plus I've seen his work and know many local skiers who swear by him. In fact, one local skier drove out to Vermont to apprentice with Zach.

But he's not the only grinder around. There maybe someone local in your area who grinds or you may want to try another nationally-known ski grinder, Mark Waechter ,at Nordic UltraTune in the state of Washington.

I do NOT recommend going to an alpine ski shop for base grinding. They're used to using the metal edges on downhills skis to guide the ski through the grinder. Guess what? Your racing skis don't have metal edges!