Building Tracks for Hus Skis (444 example)


Mike N from McFarland, Wisconsin has practical experience building tracks for a Hus Ski and he was gracious enough to share the experience with us.

Mike writes:

If you're starting that restoration of your Hus-Ski 444 or your tracks look like this, it's time for a rebuild.


If you're replacing the cleats, then the fastest way to get them off is to grind the rivet heads off and pry the cleat free from the wooden grouser.  If you're saving the cleats, you'll have to drill the rivet head just enough to pop the cleat free.

Don't waste your time trying to punch the rivet through the grouser.  Usually, the rivet is rusted too badly to slide out.  Just split the grouser and be done with it.  Then the rivets punch through the rubber tracks easier.  A box of antique kindling is great for camp fires.

 New Hard Maple grousers drying with a fresh coat of high-gloss Urethane.  Two coats works best.

 The Stainless cleats shown here seem nice and are machine bent dead-on to the 43 year oldies.

I ended up using a really neat threaded and plated retainer on the inside of the tracks. I've chosen these Zink-plated Steel Tapered Barrel Tee Nuts (McMaster # 90244A325) with a smearing of non-petroleum assembly lube to assist insertion with a soft mallet whack to render the picture below.  They seem to be the perfect length with easy assembly, decent looks and good corrosion resistance.

 I chose 1.25" stainless button-head allen bolts for a repairable and stylish re-tension. The 18-8 Stainless Steel Button Head Socket Cap Screws (McMaster #92949A544) are the perfect length with a fair cost.  I used Locktite Blue to not only retain them but to also fend off galvanic action of the diverse alloys with moisture.







Slide 'em thru your new, Urethaned, hard maple grousers.  They threaded right in using a drill-driver.  One must tighten them enough to pull the Tee Nut barbs into the track smooth.

 It's a beautiful thing!


Belting, wooden cleats and stainless ice cleats are available on the parts page.


Also, I want to give Mike a big "Thank You" for sharing his technique. We understand that this can scare a lot of people, but when you see it done and know where to get the hardware, that is half the battle. 

Regarding the cleat, some Hus Skis have cleats like Mike's above and some have the "U" shaped cleat. 

Barrie G explains:

The 444 had both cleats and only one style at a time. Up to and not 
including the 600, the ice cleat was a 5" long "U" channel. The 600 single
track had a new design for their single track. Two 12" long "U" channel cleats
were placed end to end to cover the 24" track. With the sudden introduction
of the double track 600, these 12" "U" channels were used on each track
and continued in use for some of the 444's. Later 444's had the cleat
Mike has made. Hope this clears up all the "spin" on cleats.


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