Stonegrinding for the Gatineau Loppet
By: Gatineau Nordique Sport (2009/02/07)
For skate skis, unless we are requested to do otherwise, we will grind the skis with a cold, fine grind - either the QR0 or the QR1. First of all, as many of us know and joke about, it is usually cold for the Gatineau Loppet. Secondly, for most people, you are better off if your skis have a fine grind in that this grind suits our normal/average snow conditions. Lastly, but most importantly, it is common practice for athletes including world class athletes to have their skis, including their favourite pair of skis, ground with a fine grind so that if need be they can be structured on race day.
The modern day structuring tools are excellent and when used properly, the structure they put in the base of the ski can last the duration of a 50 km ski race. As long as the structure put into the base of the ski by a structuring tool is not too aggressive, it can be removed fairly easily. Whereas the grinding process removes the base material in the process of grinding, a structuring tool simply moves the base. Afterwards, if you use a soft wax to hot scrape the ski, the base simply moves back to where it was before and the original structure is restored.
As an example of this, Megan McTavish of XC Ottawa used a pair of skis with the QR1 grind in the skating race last Sunday in the Eastern Canadian Championships. These skis with the QR1 grind were waxed appropriately and then structured with a medium structure using the Red Creek structuring tool. Megan won the race using these skis.
On the Sunday morning at 7:00am, we will be outside the gymnasium at Mont Bleu High School. We will have with us the Red Creek structuring tool and will be able to structure your skis if required.