As the nation's ski fields open, it's time to dig out the poles, skis or snowboard and head for the hills. I'm no expert in the snow but when I was 10 my dad took me on a ski holiday. We went to Ruapehu in Dad's Zephyr 6 with its cherry upholstery. He smoked the whole way with the windows up and seat belts were optional. We went skiing for the first hour then dad gave me 80 cents for a pie and left me to it. I had an excellent day but had to beg the uni-mog driver for a free trip as dad hadn't given me any money for the ride down (I had the best time, thanks Dad).
From my limited experience, skis seem heavy and awkward. In fact putting on skis seems like falling into a wild animal trap. It's fine once you're actually skiing but the difficulty for the novice is all the to-ing and fro-ing that gets you to that point. I'm much more at home on a snowboard which as I understand it, is seen by skiers as a low-rent option (not as low rent as my dad's shovel).
Skies are one of those seasonal objects which become clutter the rest of the year. To avoid this it is time to take the bull by the horns, spend an hour with a drill and hand saw and give those skis a home once and for all. Think of this way, it'll give you something to look at while you practise your Telemark landing.
Work out how many sets of skis or snowboards you have and cut a base board to the appropriate length. You can do this by laying them out in their eventual formation and measuring them with a tape. I've used a length of 150mm x 50mm pine as my base.
Lay the top of the skis across the base board then trace the curve of each ski. For this example I've also used my skateboard which has a taper much the same as snowboard.
Drill two holes as close to the curved line as possible. I did this on a slight angle to encourage the skis to sit back against the wall.
Apply glue to each hole and insert the dowel. I've cut each section of dowel at lengths of 120mm which leaves plenty of space on the dowel to hang the ski poles off the end. Make sure that each dowel is set on the same angle so the skis or snow board (longboard in my case) sit vertically.
Turn the base board over and screw each dowel from the back.
Sand any rough edges with sand paper or a sander.
Give the ski rack at least three coats of paint and let it dry thoroughly so the paint is hard. There is no reason that you have to paint the rack though, it will work perfectly well left as bare timber.
Screw the rack into position on the wall or in a cupboard. Use a spirit level to set the rack plumb, make sure your screws are long enough and that you are screwing the rack into something solid, not just plaster board.