Stonegrinding is not something that is necessarily needed each season. In fact, just because a base may look “battle scarred”, that doesn’t mean it should be immediately stoneground. If the skis are still fast, don’t grind them. With that being said, I wouldn’t wait to grind any longer than a couple maybe three years at the most. In the upper Midwest, our winters are hard on your ski base. Frequent cold temps (below 32°F) abrasive natural and man-made snows dictate the need for hard glide wax application. Abrasive cold snow and higher temps required to melt these and fluor waxes conspire to scab your ski base resulting in poor wax adhesion.
Other times when stonegrinding is appropriate:
- New skis — Some skiers prefer to start a new pair of skis with a stonegrind, while others will use them “as is”, preferring to see how the ski performs first before deciding if they might need a stonegrind. Should you decide to grind a new pair of skis, iron in a few coats of wax and if possible ski them in.
- Custom grinds for a quiver of skis — structure to specific snow conditions — cold dry to warm wet.
- There are some brands/models that experience excessive localized base swelling from the waxing process. In some cases, grinding can eliminate and in other cases only minimize the convex base. A ski base consists of a limited amount of polyethylene. Careful grinding is required.
A stonegrind will not improve the performance of an improperly fit ski.
If you suspect your skis need stonegrinding, bring them into the shop. Our expert Tom Novak will check them out.