/ ski newbie wax query

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skarabrae - on 22 Oct 2012
Planning on going some Nordic touring this winter.
Have slowly built up the kit, will be taking some lessons at a dry ski slope ( on alpine kit) im planning on using the slope to practice free heel turns using my own skis, should I get them waxed first or not until I use em on snow? Will the dry slope strip em of wax & they'll need waxing again?
Doug on 22 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: On the rare occasions I've used my own skis on a dry slope, I used the oldest pair I had. I suspect waxing won't make much difference either way, although it might help protect your skis. Personally I find that dry slopes seem nothing like snow.
teh_mark - on 22 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae:

For dry slope use I'd personally wax them with a really hard (cold temperature) wax, more for base protection than anything else. Although if you do that you'll want to have them re-waxed with something more sensible for real snow otherwise you won't be going anywhere fast...
Swirly - on 22 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: might help protect them a bit but I wouldn't recommend it, the friction on a dry slope can burn the bases. I've a few mates who are in the dry slope race scene and they use the most beat up skis they can and don't expect them to last a summer.
OwenM - on 22 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Waxes for down hill are totally different from waxes for Nordic. Basically what Nordic skiers call glide wax is what down hill skiers use all over. On Nordic skis you just put glide wax on the first and last third of the ski, on the third underfoot you put grip wax. Whatever you put on wont last long on a dry slope so it doesn't matter that much. Dry slopes f*ck your skis up quite quickly anyway.
I wouldn't use Nordic's on a dry slope but if you really must keep your hands up out of the way when you fall.
skarabrae - on 22 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: I think I'll just learn to turn on the slopes alpine kit & save my Nordics for the hills! I'm hoping that if I can learn to parallel turn or wedge Christie on the alpines then it may help me on the Nordics?
miho on 22 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Turning on alpine ski is really easy if you can do it on nordic ones. I imagine the other way round is way harder due to the much flimsier skis and boots.

I learned to ski on nordic skis going along mostly gently-sloped walking trails in the hills. First time on downhill skis I was absolutely amazed how easily they turned and how much control I had compared to the nordic skis.

Have fun anyway,
Mike
JIB - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: Good advice on avoiding damaging the bases on dry slopes - above - I used to try racing on dry slopes on old alpine kit as well...

From experience, a number of things make me suggest that it's not a great idea:- ski bases melting from friction (seen it), it's easier to damage less-durable skinny skis; edges and bases getting ripped apart by loose wires.

As an actual representation of the nordic movements, the snatching from 'dry spots' on the mats is a major distraction...especially when freeheels provide less opportunity to recover from potential face falls!

Might be worth finding an indoor snowslope which will offer a more-realistic opportunity to practise those swooping telemark turns on nordic kit...

This is an idea of how to practise it...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1U8jiKghcAg

Good luck!
In reply to skarabrae:
> I think I'll just learn to turn on the slopes alpine kit & save my Nordics for the hills! I'm hoping that if I can learn to parallel turn or wedge Christie on the alpines then it may help me on the Nordics?

What do you mean by Nordics? If you mean XC gear http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8ya4lurZc0 then yes, it helps a lot particularly if you can't tele well and you have strong boots/skis.

In reply to skarabrae: BTW, I've never put grip wax on my teleskis, I just use skins, but traditionally all skis need their bases treated with glide wax to keep them in good condition.

I haven't used classic grip waxes on my XC skis for years because I use Start grip tape: http://www.startskiwax.com/en/skiwaxes/kick-waxes/grip-tape/product/491/start-grip-tape So much less hassle than arsing about with wax and corks everytime you go out!
Doug on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to TobyA: I've always glide waxed the entire length of my skis (at home with an iron), then added grip wax if necessary to the middle third just before skiing if not using skins

But I have some grip tape which I really must try using this winter, as its been in my box of waxing stuff for a while - its the instructions to sandpaper my skis that have put me off, is that really necessary ?
daWalt on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae:
A dry slope will strip the base off the skis.
After a (relatively short) while you wear away the base marterial next to the edge, leavig the metal edge standing proud of the base.
You could help this by liberally applying LOTS of very HARD wax, I wouldn't even scrape off the excess the way you would normally.

defo better taking a trip to an indoor snowslope, even then apply lots of hard wax as the artificial snow is very abraisive (tho nowhere near dryslope).

I don't know how well you can ski, but it may be better to save your own expensive kit, and just hire skis at the slope and practise untill you are very good at sking in general.....
skarabrae - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to TobyA: hi Toby, no they are not skinny xc (although I do have a pair)
They are asnes mountain extreme backcountry skis 195cm long 65mm-55-60
Metal edged waxing skis fitted with riva bindings & the boots are garmont excursion.
Doug on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: I've used similar on a dryslope, but they were an old pair of skis that were overwise only used when the ratio of rock to snow was high (too often in Scotland :-(

If I only had one pair of skis I wouldn't take them to a dry slope
skarabrae - on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: thanx for all the advice, definately not gonna take em to a dry slope, will learn some basics on the slopes kit, then TRY & teach myself to turn on the free heel kit, i`ll keep you informed of my success/failure over the winter months ;-)
Doug on 23 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: lots of folk manage to get by on nordic skis with 'just' alpine style turns (even if telemarks are useful in some conditions)
In reply to skarabrae: If they look like this http://www.finn.no/finn/torget/tilsalgs/bilder?finnkode=28154700 I think turning them will be challenging. But they'll be nice for touring on. Like Doug says some sort of survival alpine turn is most likely to be easiest. I learnt to ski on skis similar to that and with leather boots and could tele on them, but it's a lot easier with my 12 year old plastic boots and shorter more shaped skis. I like to think when I can afford modern tele gear I'll be shredding like the dudes in the vids. :)
skarabrae - on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to TobyA: yup, that's the buggers ;-)
In reply to skarabrae: What are you thinking of using them for? In the 90s they might have been considered mountain skis - but I think you will find going downhill on them difficult as soon as it is steep enough that you need to turn. Carrying a pack with any weight in it accentuates that. For rolling terrain (as long as the 'rolls' aren't actually that steep) I'm sure they'll be fine, but if you want to enjoy going down rather than just surviving it, I suspect realistically you might have to consider getting different.

A couple of posts here from a friend's blog - an Irish guy living in Sweden:
http://www.scandinavian-hiking.com/2011/04/skinning-up-for-norway.html
http://www.scandinavian-hiking.com/2012/05/gear-guilt-ski-touring-and-falling-in.html

The first is a trip where they were using 'touring' (i.e. edged XC skis). The guy with the skins was keeping them on to go down hill, the other guy was bum sliding! After that experience I know Tomas decided the answer was to throw money at the issue and got really great modern alpine touring gear. The second post is how quickly he went from getting some basic lesson on downhill skiing to doing some really exciting ascents and descents in the Norwegian/Swedish arctic mountains.

I've done some touring on gear a bit like you have in Scotland - no reason why you can't do it, but I think you might find the downhill, which should of course be the 'reward', actually being quite difficult. Have fun but take it easy.
Doug on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to TobyA: I still have a similar pair which I use from time to time, and find that I can ski most alpine pistes, although I struggle if there are moguls. The real problem is off piste in difficult snow, especially if steep.
But plastic boots makes it easier, and wider, more shapely skis even easier although I guess I'll never ski like the dudes in the rad vids :-(
skarabrae - on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to TobyA: hi Toby, im planning on using them in Scotland for some touring, maybe link up some bothys or just up on the cairngorm plateau when the climbings not to good or zvelanche risk is yo high.
Mainly Rolling terrain, but with the ability to get down steeper sections safely.
I only paid 20 for the skis & the rest of the kit was very cheap.
If it goes well this season, than I May upgrade to better skis next winter, something like the Fischer s bound range.

Cheers,
Ps grammar police, sorry about the spelling,but its hard using a smart fone keypad with sausage fingers ;-)
AG - on 24 Oct 2012
In reply to skarabrae: you'll be fine with them for that. I started touring on a similar set up as these (although they had fish scales). The Glenshee area is also a good spot for rolling terrain, Carn a gheoidh is a good wee tour .

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