Aegir Shares: the Art of Snowboard/ Ski Maintenance
Shaun Tangen, resident slopes expert at Aegir Boardworks at 99 Water Street, gives some tips on how to make sure your gear is ready for prime time this winter. Also, be sure to join Shaun and the Aegir crew on their bus trips to some of the best mountains within a day's trip of DUMBO.
Getting ready to go up the mountain? You want to make sure your gear is ready too! Snowboarding and skiing is an outdoor activity that heavily relies on the equipment. The wrong equipment, and you probably won't be having the raddest time on the mountain. I recommend you go to a specialty shop like Aegir Boardworks to have yourself fitted by industry professionals, and not big box stores.
Once you have your equipment, it's also important to do periodic maintenance to ensure longevity and, above all, SAFTEY. Your typical Snowboard and Ski maintenance consists of keeping your bindings tight, edges sharp (especially with East Coast conditions) and a nice waxed base. Before you head out, take a screwdriver and make sure that every screw that is connecting your binding to the board/ski is nice and tight.
Base Maintenance. The base of every board & ski is a slick material made out of high density polyethylene. But its ok, you don't have to remember that, what you do need to remember is this: It needs wax.
Every base needs wax to help it glide effortlessly over the snow, and also to provide protection to the base. There are multiple types of waxes available, which include rub on wax (pretty self explanatory), hot wax, which is applied with a wax iron and different wax powders, which is usually used by professionals only. I recommend a good hot wax, because this allows for the wax to seep into the base and provide the best glide/protection. I also recommend getting a nice hot wax every 3-4 times you head up to the mountain.
Edge maintenance. So now you have a nice waxed base, but unless you can hold an edge you will be bouncing all around the mountain. This is where edge maintenance comes in. You want to make sure that your edges are sharp so your board/ski can cut into hardpack or ice without slipping out. This is important for safety because if you can't stop…well then there is no stopping you.
Edge sharpening can be done at home with the right set of files, which will be available at your local shop. At Aegir we will also show you how to do it before you head out the door. Different skis and boards require different bevels, so its important to talk to your local technician for some guidance if you are not in the know.
So you're flying down the mountain, making tight turns on those sharp edges, and then it happens, every riders worst annoyance: you hit a rock. Sometimes you get gouges in the base of your board or ski, and for the most part little scratches and gouges won't affect your performance that much, but if it goes through the base material and into the core, that is something we highly recommend getting fixed. Core shots are notorious for delaminating your equipment and basically making it useless. You want to bring it into a shop ASAP for repair. If your base has a lot of scratches and gouges, ask for some p-tex repair (the material used to repair bases) the next time you drop it off for a tune-up. It will look as sweet as the day you bought it.
Feel free to stop by Aegir Boardworks at any time with questions or to pick up some tools and materials. We also offer full service tuning and repair, where we use our Reichmann SN 350 PROFI belt sander to give your base a nice smooth finish. Check out prices and services we offer here: http://aegirboardworks.com/service-repairs-and-tuning/