Is it necessary to sharpen snowboards?
Your snowboard becomes an extension of yourself when you're out on the slopes. Nothing like shredding down a smooth slope on a bright, sunny day. However, keeping your snowboard in good form, such as sharpening it, is crucial if you want it to be at its best and continue to enjoy days out on the mountain.
Snowboards must be sharpened because you will not get the most out of your snowboarding excursions if they are not properly maintained. Sharpening snowboard edges improves performance and keeps the snowboard in good shape.
Why Do Snowboards Need To Be Sharpened?
Snowboards, like any other piece of equipment, will not work optimally if not properly maintained. Sharpening the edges of a snowboard, sometimes known as "tuning it," is one of the most crucial maintenance chores.
The sharp edges allow your snowboard to cut through the snow much more easily and quickly, making it easier to perform snowboarding tricks such as turns. It also keeps you safe because you don't have to expend as much energy performing these techniques, and your snowboard won't behave erratically.
How Often Should Snowboards Be Sharpened?
Snowboard edges normally dull with each ride, but some factors, such as riding on abrasive snow (such as manufactured snow or ice), hitting hard objects such as boulders, or impurities such as dirt in the snow, will accelerate the rate at which they need to be sharpened.
The frequency with which you should have your snowboard sharpened is determined by how much snowboarding you do. Because most riders only ride in the winter, most sharpen their boards once a year, but if you're a regular snowboarder, you definitely need to sharpen your board multiple times a year.
Finally, you must decide how frequently your snowboard should be polished. That is why it is critical to recognize when your board requires attention and how to sharpen it.
Keep in mind that new snowboards are already pre-sharpened, so if you're new to snowboarding, you can get out there and start having fun right away without having to worry about board maintenance.
How Can You Tell If Your Snowboard Needs Sharpening?
If you believe it is time to sharpen your snowboard, lightly scrape your fingernail (not your finger itself) along the edge of your snowboard. A thin sliver of fingernail will be removed if your snowboard is sharp enough.
Rust, burrs, nicks, scratches, or rounded edges are also apparent visual indicators that your snowboard needs sharpening.
What Is the Best Way to Sharpen Your Snowboard?
You're probably wondering how to sharpen your snowboard now that you've learned more about its value.
You have two options:
- hire a professional
- or do it yourself.
How Much Does Sharpening a Snowboard Cost?
For most inexperienced snowboarders, getting expert assistance is a method to save time, avoid mistakes, and keep their board in great condition.
How much will your snowboard sharpening cost?
The cost of sharpening your snowboard will vary depending on the process required. Quick tune-ups can cost around $20, however more comprehensive operations, such as a full tune-up and wax, can cost more than $50.
The cost will also be determined by where you go to get it done, as different locations charge varying rates.
Can You Sharpen Your Own Snowboard?
Learning how to sharpen your own snowboard is worthwhile for individuals who snowboard frequently or want to save money. Just keep in mind that you will need to spend some money on tools at start, as well as set aside a few hours of your day to complete the task.
How to Sharpen Your Own Snowboard
Here are the tools you'll need to sharpen your snowboard:
- An edging tool for snowboarding
- A permanent marker
- A gummy stone
The steps are as follows:
- Set up your workspace: It is entirely up to you where you sharpen your board. If you have a large enough garage, it is usually the best option; otherwise, simply pick a good spot outside. Organize everything you need before you begin, since you don't want to be darting inside to get something you need when you're in the middle of the job.
- Choose your edge angle: The majority of riders require their boards to be sharpened to a 90-degree angle. This is the industry standard for intermediate and novice snowboarders. Some people like 89-, 88-, and 87-degree angles, but these are only for experienced riders.
- Determine which part of the board needs to be sharpened: Only the concave edge of your board has to be sharpened. If you're not sure where to sharpen it, lay it down on a level surface. If you have a camber board, sharpen the area where the board meets the ground. Sharpening the ends of your snowboard will make the board incredibly tough to operate.
- Mark the side edge of your board with a permanent marker: Draw down the side edge of your board with the permanent marker. This is a simple way to tell if you have sharpened the entire edge.
- Check that your edge sharpener is oriented in the correct direction: Most sharpening instruments only go one way, and they will tell you which way to use them. Sharpen your board in a stroking motion from nose to tail.
- Sharpen your edge gently: Slide the edge sharpener along the board's edge with gentle pressure. This must be done several times. When the black marker line on the edge disappears, the edge has been sharpened sufficiently.
- Run your fingernail lightly over the newly honed edge to test its sharpness: The edge is sharp enough if some of your fingernail gets scratched off.
- Sharpen the opposite edge of the board: Repeat this step with the opposite edge of your board to ensure it is sharp and in good shape.
- Polish the board's edges: Using a gummy stone, rub it along both of the board's edges to eliminate any rust or blemishes. This is not required, but it is a fantastic method to keep your board in top shape and give it a tiny performance boost.
What Else Can You Do to Keep Your Snowboard in Good Condition?
Aside from correctly sharpening your snowboard, there are several other crucial things you can do to care for it. The good news is that with a little know-how, you can simply do all of these things yourself.
Make use of a Sharpening Stone.
After each ride, use a sharpening stone to maintain your snowboard's edges sharp. To repair any damage done at home, use a coarse grit diamond stone, a file, and a fine stone. You may also side-tune the base with a diamond stone and a ceramic stone for a quick touch-up.
Keep your board dry and clean.
After riding, make sure to properly dry off your board; otherwise, it may rust. Dry it with a cloth that is small enough to fit in your car or backpack. Wiping down your board with a cloth will also get rid of any dirt and debris.
Properly store your board
When the snowboarding season is done, don't just throw all of your equipment in the garage. Your board should be stored in a place where it will not become too hot or cold, nor will it become damp. It is preferable to store your board indoors. You should also remove the bindings before storing the board to assist keep the board's bent.
Your Board Should Be Waxed
Waxing your board preserves the base, keeps it from rusting, and makes snowboarding much simpler. You should wax your snowboard after three or four rides, but you can do it more frequently if it appears necessary. Waxing your snowboard is a simple and inexpensive task that you can accomplish at home.
How well you care for your snowboard directly correlates to how much fun you will have riding it. Maintaining the sharpness of your snowboard not only ensures that it will last longer, but it also means that you will have a more enjoyable and safer experience out on the snow.
Maintain your board by waxing it on a regular basis and keeping it in proper conditions. A well-maintained snowboard should provide years of enjoyment in the mountains.