During the winter months everyone is thinking of skating, coasting or ski running and jumping. Those too timid to run down a hill standing upright on skis must take their pleasure in coasting or skating.
The ordinary ski can be made into a coasting ski-toboggan by joining two pairs together with bars without injury to their use for running and jumping. The ordinary factory-made skis cost from $2.50 per pair up, but any boy can make an excellent pair far 50 cents.
In making a pair of skis, select two strips of Norway pine free from knots, 1 in. thick, 4 in. wide and 7 or 8 ft. long. Try to procure as fine and straight a grain as possible. The pieces are dressed thin at both ends leaving about 1 ft. in the center the full thickness of 1 in., and gradually thinning to a scant 1/2 in. at the ends. One end of each piece is tapered to a point beginning 12 in. from the end. A groove is cut on the under side, about 1/4 in. wide and 1/8 in. deep, and running almost the full length of the ski. This will make it track straight and tends to prevent side slipping. The shape of each piece for a ski, as it appears before bending, is shown in Fig. 1.
The pointed end of each piece is placed in boiling water for at least 1 hour, after which the pieces are ready for bending. The bend is made on an ordinary stepladder. The pointed ends are stuck under the back of one step and the other end securely tied to the ladder, as shown in Fig. 2. They should remain tied to the ladder 48 hours in a moderate temperature, after which they will hold their shape permanently.
The two straps, Fig. 3, are nailed an a little forward of the center of gravity so that when the foot is lifted, the front of the ski will be raised. Tack on a piece of sheepskin or deer hide where the foot rests, Fig. 4. The best finish for skis is boiled linseed oil. After two or three
Illustration: Fig. 1, Fig. 2, Fig. 3 – Forming the Skis applications the under side will take a polish like glass from the contact with the snow. The ski-toboggan is made by placing two pairs of skis together side by side
Illustration: Fig. 4 – The Toe Straps and fastening with two bars across the top. The bars are held with V-shaped metal clips as shown in Fig. 5. --Contributed by Frank Scobie, Sleepy Eye, Minn.
Illustration: Fig. 5 – Ski-Toboggan