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What does the term ‘bake my skates’ apply to? It applies to the break-in of a new pair of skates used in Roller Hockey. You cannot get into this sport without knowledge, skills, and equipment.
However, choosing the right pair of skates and having it properly broken-in is often the concern of many beginners. Don’t worry as we will guide you through some simple steps so that you can safely ‘bake’ your new pair of skates before enjoying the fun.
Bake My Skates – How Important Is It?
Why do you use the term ‘bake my skates’? Is it the same as baking cookies? Yes and No. You do put a new pair of skates into the oven but you don’t want it to be super crunchy like cookies.
New skates are often stiff, and sometimes you find wearing them very uncomfortable. Unless you have a pair of personalized skates which are the ones designed to fill the molds resembling your own feet, you have to personalize your new pair at home.
The point of baking skates is to have them softened and molded to the shape of your feet. This is a shortened break-in process compared to the huge amount of time you’ve got to wear them on ice to get them really soft and comfortable.
In other words, you re-mold your pair of hockey skates using the heat from the microwave, or you make them unique to you.
Nowadays skate baking is an additional service but of course, most stores require a fee. However, you can bake your new skates at home with some of the following steps.
Bake My Skates At Home – How To?
We will divide the break-in process into two stages, which are the baking and the molding.
Step 1: You need to preheat your oven first.
Make sure to set the temperature to 79 degrees Celsius which is equal to 175 degrees Fahrenheit.
This temperature is ideal to soften the materials of your skates without really destroying them. Some heat-vulnerable components made from plastic can easily mess things up when you don’t set the right temperature. Therefore, setting the exact temperature is very crucial.
We have one more tip to ensure the accurate temperature, that is to use a thermometer. Sometimes ovens don’t tell the actual temperature. If you worry about accuracy, buy a thermometer and use it to check the temperature the second time.
Step 2: Once the oven is preheated, turn it off.
There is a display that tells you when the preheating is done. This signal can vary among different ovens. Some have the small light signal while others have a sound signal that resembles a bell.
After that, you must immediately turn the oven off and keep the hot air inside for the next baking steps. Do not leave the oven door open, otherwise it cools down and ruins the next baking process.
Preheating is very essential. You cannot put your skates straight into a cool oven and turn on and let the heat build up. This only destroys your skates and you will have to throw them away.
In an already preheated oven, the high temperature is not constant and direct so your skates will be baked, not destroyed.
Step 3: Before baking
If you have never done skate baking before, try to take it easy. We recommend you bake the skates separately, each skate each time. Most ovens are unable to fit 2 skates at once so baking them one by one is the optimal choice.
Before baking, you must undo all the laces to loosen the tongue. If you just leave the laces tied and the tongue tight, there is a possibility that your skate badly deforms when you try to put your foot into it to remold it. At that point, your favorite skates easily become unusable.
Baking works 80% provided that you strictly follow the steps of preparation, measurements, and timing.
Step 4: Let’s bake
Place a skate onto a tray and put them straight into the preheated oven. Leave them there with the oven door shut. You must set timer to six or eight minutes. Precision in timing is compulsory. You must be exact in every minute.
There is a way for you to check the baking process. Open the oven door and use a spatula to gently press the skate. Do not flip the skate.
You will know when your skate is done baking. There will be a plastic smell but don’t you panic. Carefully take it out and see the result.
If you leave your skate in the oven more than eight minutes, the heat can melt and permanently damage your skate.
You have finished half the job. Now we will move on to the molding process.
Step 1: Choose the socks
You have dozens of socks. However, use the socks that go with your skates. Don’t choose the socks that are too thin, since the thinner the socks, the tighter the skate. Don’t choose the socks that are too thick because it will not give you the best fit. Put on a pair of socks that you normally use for roller hockey.
Step 2: Get ready
Don’t wait for too long as the skate cools down, it will quickly mold. If you miss this part, you get back to zero. Don’t waste your precious time. As soon as you take the skate out, quickly leave it on a chair.
Step 3: Let’s mold
Place the skate skywards, slide your foot into your skate with the tongue stretched forward. Make sure you are able to get all your foot inside it. Tap the skate several times to make your foot more secure.
Now if all the steps are properly followed and the skate is properly baked, you should feel warm down your foot, not scorching.
Pull the tongue back to its original position, then tie the laces tight but still comfortable for you. Now, all you need to do is wait.
Don’t move your foot or walk when the skate is being molded or you will break the mold. Sit comfortably for at least 15 minutes with your feet tightly inside the skate. The materials begin to resemble the shape of your foot. They will take time to fit around your foot. Remember to set the timer.
Now if you feel more comfortable, let’s create the best fit. That is to mimic the position of you playing hockey. Tap the nose of the blade against the floor a few times. Stay still until your timer stops.
Don’t wear the skate too soon as the materials take at least 24 hours to completely harden. After 15 minutes, you unlace and take the skate off, then retie the lace before allowing it to dry in a cool area.
Step 4: Repeat the molding process
To get the best mold possible, focus on your skates one by one. After baking and molding your first skate, do the same to the second one. You should also allow it some time to fully solidify. The total hours spent on this skate bake process is 48 hours.
Bake My Skates – Some Final Notes
How many times can I put them in the oven?
Skates are not something you can put in the oven over and over again. If you have just baked your pair of skates three times and still felt harsh down your feet, you should stop baking them immediately.
You can only bake them no more than three times to avoid the risk of permanent damage which leads to the discard of your favorite skates. Remember that the materials can withstand very high heat from the oven but there is a limit to it.
Can all hockey skates be baked?
The answer is no. Skates of lower budget and some low-grade-material ones are not made to be baked. In other words, the material is not reliable to be put into the oven. You should not bake these kinds of skates at all. The risk of failure is high in this case.
On the contrary, this break-in method can only be used for medium to high-end skates, which are made to be baked. Higher cost means higher reliability in this case.
You have reached the final lines of our step-by-step guide to ‘bake my skates’. After reading our post, you can get the answers yourself. Carefully follow our steps to safely get your skates broken in. Roller Hockey is an extreme but fun sport.
Finally, we hope that this post on ‘how to bake my skate’ can be helpful to you beginners out there and get you to enjoy the fun the right way. Good Luck!