Getting your ski/snowboard equipment ready for the winter season!Nov 15, 2021
It has been six months or more for most of us since we put away our skis and snowboards last winter. In some instances, they were thrown in the corner of the garage or the basement storage room.
Unlike some sporting goods hat don’t require seasonal maintenance, your skis, snowboard, and boots need a little TLC before carving some turns on fresh powder this winter.
With the help from Daniel Paul, WinSport’s Team Lead, Rental Shop, and our Ski & Bike technician, here are some essential tips to prepare for a new season.
Use a hose to thoroughly spray down and remove any dirt, salt, grease, road grime, pollen, etc., that may have attached themselves to your equipment while in storage over the summer season. Avoid getting water into the bindings, as this could affect the lube/grease in the bindings. After cleaning is complete, wipe down and dry off the equipment with a towel.
Sharpen the edges using a file and file guide. Use overlapping strokes across the entire edge from tip to tail. You will need to do both the base edge and side edge of the equipment. Then use a soft gummi-stone and run it along the edges to smooth out and remove any burrs and rust. Afterward, wipe the edges clean with a towel and rubbing alcohol.
Waxing your skis/snowboard bases will help protect the base from oxidation (drying out)—Wax the base with an appropriate temperature wax for the current conditions. Different waxes perform best in specific temperature ranges, so if you had your skis/snowboard waxed for cold snow, they might not perform well in the warmer conditions you could encounter in November.
Be generous with the wax and make sure the base is completely covered evenly in all areas. Leave your skis/snowboard at room temperature until the bases feel entirely cool to the touch, usually about 30 minutes. After that, you can scrape the wax layer off with a plastic scraper. To get the best results after scraping the wax off, use a range of brushes to smooth out (brush order: brass – stiff nylon – soft nylon – fine horsehair).
It’s always a good idea to recheck your DIN settings. Most people will back off the tension on the ski binding springs, so they don’t stay compressed all summer. Recheck and set your DIN to the correct setting on each toe and heelpiece. You will need a screwdriver (normally Phillip-head or flat-head) to adjust the DIN settings on your skis. Also, check that all binding screws are tightened appropriately (this applies to skis and snowboards).
If in doubt about the condition of your equipment, take it into a ski shop and get it checked out by a technician. They can perform more extensive work on your gear if needed. This may include P-Tex work on the base, a base and stone grind, base and side edge grind, waxing, and ski binding calibration.
Lastly, check that your boots still fit correctly. Check the heels and toes for wear, check all buckles operate correctly, and for snowboard boots with laces, inspect and replace if worn/frayed.