Thursday, November 10, 2011

Ski Tuning Bench ver. 2 Done!

Finally done. This one took too much head scratching, the double hinge was a pain in the a** and trying to figure out an easy and strong way to support it took many different tries. In the end it worked out, is pretty simple to set up and is very stable. It takes me a few minutes to set up, after ever having only set it up a couple of times. Included on the table is a power outlet with a short cord to attach to an extension cord, a small 6*8 inch piece of metal screwed to the table top to place an iron on and a small flip out shelf to put tools on while tuning. To help hold the skis down while scraping or edging, I have a simple tie down that uses 1/8 inch cord and a clamcleat ( which can be bought at marine supply stores). This system is kind of like the Tools 4 Boards set that you can buy, only it costs about $10 instead of $100. Below is a complete listing of all the materials that I bought for this project and what they were used for...

table legs              
eye screws and zinc plate     (for iron rest and ski tie down)
5/8" baltic birch plywood  
piano hinge 6 foot   
assorted screws, carriage bolts...      (#8*5/8 and #8* 1 1/4)
angle brackets     (for ski support bracing)
electrical supplies  
1/4" t-track, bar knob and t-bolts  (for sliding ski supports)
hemlock wooden spindle *2   (for table supports)
clam cleat *2  
bicycle inner tube (for ski supports)
I could have saved money just by buying different plywood, but it will be in the house so I wanted it to look good.So there you go, a table, ski supports and vises all for the price of a mid level, single ski vise.

The table is about 84 inches long (210cm approx), so it won't be a problem to wax longer skis and it's almost 19 inches wide (48 cm),so it should handle wide planks as well. It folds down to 39 inches long by the same width and about 8 inches deep. One of the best things is that I can tune any size of ski and there is no need for a "dummy" boot sole to help clamp the ski down because the ski supports move easily and the tie down works on most parts of the binding making it very flexible. As well I can tune skis with both on the bench and don't have to change them constantly, which I hate. Usually our skis are in pretty good shape and I can touch up the bases and edges while the skis are flat on the bench. Only for heavy filing will I work with one ski on edge.

Here is a poorly filmed video, that shows how simple and effectively the ski vises work. Here is a link to a video showing the set up of the table. In the ski vise video the wood that is tipped up at the end of the bench has a small hook on it to hold a light that will plug in at the same end of the table.

Next on the list is to build a ski waxing "hot box". If you have any questions on how I built this, just leave it in the comments. Thanks for looking and have a good season.


Jeff said...

Hi Chris - great project! How do you brace the table (from below I'm guessing) so that it stays flat and in place when opened up? Do you have any pictures from the bottom?

Nick Molloy said...

Very Nice build...
One question though...
Why did you change the position of the Piano hinge from the position shown in the earlier photos?