With the first few flakes of snow falling last month month in Whistler, winter is on the horizon. It may be a little while longer before we get to enjoy it in Europe but you can use this down time to prepare yourself a workshop space for keeping your gear in working order throughout the winter. Our in-house workshop guru P-Tex Pete shows you where to start...
1. A Workbench
Every good ski and snowboard workshop starts with a solid bench to work on, this will form the basis of your workshop.
You can usually find an old table or desk from eBay or Gumtree for next to nothing. Afterall, scratches and marks won't matter!
If you don't have space for a permanent bench here are a few alternatives:
- Buy a cheap collapsible keyboard stand – the rubber pads on it are excellent at gripping the ski or board.
- A basic solution is to turn two chairs back to back and simply lay your ski or snowboard across.
2. A Vice
Once you have a bench, fixing a vice to it should be your next priority. Securing your skis or board allows you to work on your edges and repair and dings. You can buy ski vices from servicing and ski companies but these are often expensive.
A very simple method for securing yours skis is to attached two rectangle blocks of wood to your bench and tape some foam padding to the top of the blocks. This give you space to rest you skis upside down whilst your skis are held securely for edge work.
3. Parts Storage
Keeping a few spare binding screws and washers is always a good idea - especially if you have a snowboard. Collect an old jam jar, clean it out and then drill a hole through the lid. Screw the lid to the bottom of a shelf around head height. You can now see all your screws, washers and other bits though the glass and you only need one hand to undo the jar.
4. A Ski or Snowboard Rack
If you're going to be servicing a few pairs of skis (for family or friends) having a little rack to store them in makes it a bit easier. It also means you don't have to lean them against a wall and risk them sliding and hitting the floor.
Any piece of rectangular wood can be screwed to your garage wall and pieces of dowel slotted into it. Add a piece off old carpet or a door mat (or something similar) under the rack to help protect the tail, and rubber bands to the dowel rods for further grip. This all ensures your skis or snowboard remain upright, scratch-free and easy to work with.
5. Tool storage
One of the most simple and useful ways to store your tools is a magnetic knife rack on a wall. You can fit all different shapes and sizes of tool on it, you can see all your tools at a glance and it's really easy to grab the tool you want.