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Slalom Course Design

Mitch90Mitch90 Posts: 3 Baller
Hi Guys,
Long time reader first time poster.

I have a question about slalom course design and building.
I am going to build my own, as I have the equipment to, and I plan on setting it out in my factory before installing.
It will be a instaslalom/wally skier style design with the mainline running through and diamonds at each guide.

when measuring your point between each buoy along the mainline, do you need to allow a little bit extra to compensate for the line sagging where it is not held up? obviously if the line sags a bit it will bring the buoy's in closer together.

I hope my terminology and description makes sense.

Cheers guys.



  • condorpilotcondorpilot Posts: 65 Baller
    Lee, there are some posts on BOS re this. I believe the solution to prevent the pipes sagging is to place buoyancy inside the hollow tubes. 1 to 1.5 m length of pipe insulation inserted in the middle of the arm from the diamond to the buoy appears to be sufficient to level it out horizontally. Replace each season as it absorbs water. Think that was previously posted by “Ed”???? who manufactures the EZ courses.
  • condorpilotcondorpilot Posts: 65 Baller
    Sorry Lee think I misread your question. The main line on ours has actually got small lead weights crimpedalong it’s length every few metres. As long as it’s kept under tension it’s fine and neither sinks or floats.

  • AndreAndre Posts: 986 Crazy Baller
    edited December 2017
    You 're gonna need tension to keep the course straight and that tension keep the mainline pretty tight.
    No sagging on my 12 years old SS mainline from EZ Slalom that is use as a permanent floating course and sink to the bottom in winter.
    Using 2 125 lbs Danforth style anchors so we can probably keep it tighter and straighter then an install,ski and remove usage...
  • Mitch90Mitch90 Posts: 3 Baller
    thanks Condor, yeah I was referring to the main line, not the pvc, but I will take that one onboard with the extra floatation in them.

    Cheers Andre, exactly what I was after, I know it will still sag a little, but not as much obviously.
    Will aim to keep the tension up,

    Cheers Guys, great help!

    any extra tips would be greatly appreciated.
  • ZmanZman Posts: 1,221 Crazy Baller
    Ed recommends using a 48 inch section of the same PVC pipe you make the arms with to make the added buoyancy. Glue caps on each end of these short sections, just leaving air trapped inside. Then use three large wire ties to attach one of these short sections at mid-span on the turn buoy arms. I made mine with 42 inch sections because that is what I had in scrap pieces after making the course. Works perfectly.
  • Jody_SealJody_Seal Posts: 2,424 Mega Baller
    Get with Dave Kidd he builds the supafloat . Save time and hassle , I brought one back a couple years ago. Very accurate all stainless construction. Dave can be found at Williams wet suits.
    Hobby Boats can be expensive when the hobbyist is limited on their own skill and expertise.

  • LazLaz Posts: 300 Baller
    I think Ed from EZ-Slalom can send you the complete instructions.

    From his site:

    COURSEPLANS© Booklet - "How To Build Your Own Portable Slalom Course For Under $375!". 33 pages of completely photo illustrated and highly detailed construction plans. Operating on a severely restricted budget? Build your own and save! Price includes US and Canadian shipping. Add $8 for shipping outside the US and Canada.

    PRICE..................Still Only $35
  • thagerthager Posts: 4,295 Mega Baller
    When I built my own course Ed answered all my questions and provided parts I needed to buy. Highly recommend!
    Stir vigorously then leave!
  • skierjpskierjp Posts: 609 Crazy Baller
    Not worth the aggravation and time. Just buy a Accufloat from Suyderhound and be done with it! Leave it to the experts. One bad crimp in the cable and you will have 900' of cable wadded up on the shore or bottom of the lake!
  • skihackerskihacker Posts: 235 Baller
    I would tend to agree with @skierjp, lots of stuff can go wrong, especially the mainline which is around $300 for poly i think? Stainless is $500? Well worth it imho.
  • thagerthager Posts: 4,295 Mega Baller
    edited December 2017
    It's not that hard to do. Just saying! Made mine out of stainless. Total cost was about $150 back in 2001.
    Stir vigorously then leave!
  • Orlando76Orlando76 Posts: 745 Crazy Baller
    I made a homemade not so portable course as I really had no intention to pull it out. I made diamonds with 2” schedule 80 pvc, wrapped 5/16 rope around the pipe and used ubolts to cinch the wrap around the pipe. I used one piece of rope for one side of diamond and separate piece for the other side. I joined the ropes together by using a simple knot for joining two ropes together which can’t fail and I can’t find anywhere online so I’ll call it the Orlando 76 knot. I made all the diamonds identical then cut ropes the proper length to connect diamonds together via small shackles. I did shorten the rope between the diamonds maybe 1.5 to allow for the rope to stretch. We put maybe 450 pounds of crap on one end and 3 mobile home anchors chained together on the opposite end then used a cheap come-along to pull it tight. In our case we were on flat bottom 5.5’ deep. When done I measured the boat guides with a string and surprisingly they were all within an inch which I felt was pretty darn good. I hope all that made somewhat sense. In my case there were no crimps to fail. It’s been 4 years and two hurricanes and when the buoys are out it’s still straight and timing good. I used pipes and rope and Pythagorean theory to set turn buoys individually with concrete weights. Definitely not very portable though and wouldn’t work well with deep or uneven bottoms.
  • GWaterskiGWaterski Posts: 32 Baller
    edited January 12
    Wayyyy back when I was a lineman, I could get 1/4" galvanized support strand for free.
    And PVC pipe from a wholesaler friend. I also had industry pricing for preformed galvanized grips and splices.
    If you have a fairly long and wide driveway, it's pretty easy to build one and by incorporating a little extra sag length between buoys - absolutely accurate. They were heavier than the ones using smaller lighter cables, but at 6,000 lbs tensile strength, breaking wasn't even a thought.
    So, I built 10, maybe 12 accufloat type courses and put them in all over SW MI lakes.
    Yes, about 15 years later the galvanized steel did rust where the galvanizing was scraped off from the diamonds.
    Best result was meeting a lot of skiers, growing the sport and having multiple sites to shred!
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,878 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    I'd buy an EZ slalom from Ed and call it good.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • supergadgetsupergadget Posts: 55 Baller
    I second @6balls
  • BulldogBulldog Posts: 983 Solid Baller
    I third @6balls
    Mike Loeffler - "Someone somewhere is having a real problem today...My bad skiing is NOT one of them"
  • VONMANVONMAN Posts: 86 Baller
    I fourple @6balls
    Ernie Schlager

    A Good One Ball Gives You Six
  • skierjpskierjp Posts: 609 Crazy Baller
    Suyderhound!!!!! For sure if you are putting it in semi permanent
  • mjumpmjump Posts: 46 Baller
    Accufloat with Suyderhound is the best
  • ALPJrALPJr Posts: 1,624 Crazy Baller
    edited January 14
    Oops deleted
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