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 Post subject: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2009 2:51 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:51 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Eastern Sierra's - Lake Tahoe Basin
I have running a DIY on a Ride Mountain 168 and Burton Supermodel 163 (wife's pow gun) for the last few weeks. I am using the standard Voile' Split Kit #1100, circular saw, hammers, rocks and beer in the construction of this project. I chose a few construction alternatives and deviated from standard suggestions for sealing and outfitting the hardware.

Many suggestions point towards sealing the interior split cut with a few layers of paint, laquer or epoxy. On suggestions from a good local Split and DIY dealer, Sierra Ski & Cycle Works http://www.sierraskiandcycleworks.com/ I followed their advice on some cutting techniques and to avoid the painted sidewall sealing (it wears off as you slide across the snow).

So looking at some of the more well-thought designs on the racks, I have noticed P-Tex sidewalls becoming more popular. Look at the benefits: flexible at below freezing temps, impact resistant, easily installation & repair and it's vibration dampening qualities. Prep was fairly easy, I took a deep-V wood carvers chisel and dug sideways into the wood core a V-shape channel from 1/4" on the tip(s) and tail(s) to 3/8" deep in the waist. I followed up with hand scoring and feather the V-channel with a razor blade to give a "tooth" for the P-Tex to grab on to.

This is where you need the right tool for the job. You cannot use the standard drip P-Tex candles, they contain a percentage of wax in them to allow them to self-burn for the average home repair job. What is needed is a P-Tex base welder gun. It looks like an oversized version of your grandmom's hot glue gun she Bedazzle's your Christmas sweater with. It runs on a hotter temperature level that will allow the P-Tex to melt and bind into the surrounding materials as well as utilizing hand pressure onto the welding tip.

In preparation I left the two split halves against a medium temperature (sealed) radiator that kept the prep areas toasty and dry. A quick pass with dry wax iron heat directly to the application area and heated up the gun. One trick I found was to work slow and build up the channel. The wood core is porous and with the preheating and molten P-Tex pouring into the channel, it coughs up a lot of air bubbles. So I found it easier to follow along with a X-Acto point and pop the bubbles continuously so they did not leave the sidewall with any voids or bubbles to uncover and refill. The board was plenty hot to keep the P-Tex from cooling too quickly, the key is to keep the material hot for a few minutes to let it soak in and hold fast when cooled and ridden.

Returned the halves back to the radiator to keep warm. While it is firming up, large run-offs and blobs of P-Tex can be carefully razored off. But be mindful not to disturb the attachment areas too much, let them get the best hold possible. After 20 minutes of cure-time, I took a rasp to the the sidewall area and brought down the walls from a 45º degree out towards the tips to a 55º under the toes and towards the waist. I rounded the base P-Tex into the sidewall and done!

I also opted to keep my piece of mind on the board/mounting puck interface. Voile' calls for tapping the (wood) core and epoxy mounting in screws. As you might infer from my screen name I am a lumberjack sized rider. 6'3" 239lbs. but with some grace and cat skills after 19 years of riding. But having a questionable interface for my frame will not give me piece-of-mind when I drop in; I want to forget my board is there.

Nonetheless, I have heard of various fellow hessians and skunk apes tearing out of their wood cores on occasions. So I chose to purchase P-Tex covered inserts. I already have possessed an insert countersink bit from previous tuning work, and luckily it matched to inserts I had just purchased. You first drill a 3/16" pilot hole, then bore out to a 1/4". The insert countersink has a matching 1/4" plug head that slides in and centers the bit. It drills in to depth and automatically stop on a built in flange.

The next step was to use a 24 hr epoxy to set the inserts. I first tapped them down with a flat faced hammer, then one by one, clamped them down further into the hole with the use of a large c-clamp. Set the board back over the radiator and let it toast all night while the epoxy cured. Out of 38 inserts only two spun out; which was easily corrected by pulling, cleaning hole and re-gluing a new insert. Once fully dry I smoothed the base with a belt sander. (Too cheap to go to the shop for a belt-grind) Once again, out of 38 inserts only two P-Tex covers popped off, which again was an easy repair by underscoring the metal surface and reapplying the cap with hot P-Tex from the gun and some hand pressure.

Mounted up, drove up the road, two quick R&D runs to some mini peaks in Daggett Pass last night; grainy slushy snow (spring conditions: sigh!), a couple of small rocks drops and sasquatch board-cranking turns and the board seems to be doing it's job.

More results and the complete build gallery to follow.
(Sorry, do not have the photos downloaded yet)

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Some will fall in love with life and drink it from a fountain
That is pouring like an avalanche comin' down the mountain.


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 Post subject: Re: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2009 10:47 am 
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Joined: Tue Dec 23, 2008 4:35 pm
Posts: 16
Location: North Vancouver BC
NICE! Gotta see those pictures now!


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 Post subject: Re: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2009 2:15 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:51 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Eastern Sierra's - Lake Tahoe Basin
Update on the Burton Supermodel DIY. We tried a mod during the cutting of the Supermodel 163 for my wife. She wanted a pow-proof board that wouldn't pearl on her if we happened to get a real good pow/hike day. I liked the feel and ride of my Burton Fish in the deep stuff and was looking for a similar benefit for my wife.
We redrew the initial center-line that was measured out and took the tail end of the line and moved it to the left and right of center just shy of a 1/4" on each side. Redrew the nose point to both of these new points and cut on those two lines during the sawing step.
This made the cut start at 0 at the nose and spread out to a 1/2" at the tail. With that cut, the two flat inside edges when joined in board-mode create a more exaggerated tapered tail shape that:
#1 Fits my wife's footprint better side-to-side for her rear pow steering
#2 Creates a smaller tail area that will sink easier in deep
#3 Tapered radius gets in and out of turns and handles the unexpected mogul runs easier

We'll see. Board is epoxy'd, clamped and curing until tomorrow final hardware install.

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Some will fall in love with life and drink it from a fountain
That is pouring like an avalanche comin' down the mountain.


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 Post subject: Re: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2009 2:22 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 23, 2008 4:35 pm
Posts: 16
Location: North Vancouver BC
Dude, I am just searching for the right board to cut. Your description is great, but I'm a guy, I wanna see pictures!

:doobie:


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 Post subject: Re: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2009 2:52 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:51 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Eastern Sierra's - Lake Tahoe Basin
Having trouble posting pictures. Any how-to posting advice off of a MAC?

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Some will fall in love with life and drink it from a fountain
That is pouring like an avalanche comin' down the mountain.


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 Post subject: Re: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2009 3:31 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 06, 2004 10:57 pm
Posts: 4952
Location: California
This should help.
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=5619


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 Post subject: Re: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2009 9:38 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:51 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Eastern Sierra's - Lake Tahoe Basin
Prepping Channel for P-Tex Sidewalls
Image
Finished P-Tex Sidewall
Image
P-Tex Inserts
Image

_________________
Some will fall in love with life and drink it from a fountain
That is pouring like an avalanche comin' down the mountain.


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 Post subject: Re: Split Sidewalls: P-Tex sidewall construction
PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2009 9:43 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 9:51 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Eastern Sierra's - Lake Tahoe Basin
And to not forget, the first voyage: Just off of N. Benjamin near Daggett Pass. Yo-Yo runs under Misty Mountain Sky
Image
Image

I am in love.

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Some will fall in love with life and drink it from a fountain
That is pouring like an avalanche comin' down the mountain.


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