NC Junior shares hard-earned life and business lessons in fourth year running Cody’s Tune and Wax

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Cody Crawford on the bench (Amy Crawford, Facebook)

CASPER, Wyo.– With a fair amount of snow finally on the slopes, Natrona County High School’s ski tuning and waxing business, Cody Crawford, based in the family garage, is back in business.

“I’ve had my own coaches ask me to do their skis,” Crawford told Oil City News in testament to his skill.

Armed with a business and marketing course in his freshman year and a workbench given to him for Christmas, Crawford launched Cody’s Tune and Wax in late 2018.

Cody Crawford on the alpine slopes (Courtesy of Amy Crawford)

Since then, he’s been the go-to service technician for his alpine ski team teammates, giving them more time to focus on studies and other responsibilities, Crawford said.

Frequent tune-ups are key, he said. “It makes a huge difference, especially in the race. … It’s the difference between trying to cut something with a dull knife or a sharp knife.

He is quick to credit his father Kenny and his coaches throughout his life as a skier for developing his expertise in the art of applying melted wax, scraping it and brushing the grooves, as well as to shape the bevel on the metal edge of the skis so that they carve just right.

“Over the years I’ve had a lot of coaches teach me little tricks and different things with equipment — ways to do it right,” he said. “I took a bit of what everyone taught me and put it together.”

Crawford has been on the slopes most of his life and was the MVP for the Mustang Alpine Ski Team in the 2018-19 and 2020-21 seasons.

He started with family equipment and said he invested almost all of the company’s income in improved waxing irons, vises, bevel files and waxes. His mother Amy and Peden’s Printing and Embroidery created the logo on the bench.

“If money wasn’t an issue and I had plenty of space, I’d buy a base grinder,” Crawford said, explaining that this machine shaves a layer off the entire polyethylene base of the ski and “gives you a clean slate.”

Running a business, especially a seasonal business, has its own ups and downs. There were months when months went by without a client, “and there were times when I had so much business that I couldn’t handle it.”

It was then that he recruited his lifelong friend Kenny, who skied for Kelly Walsh: “I know he’ll do well and he’s very reliable,” said Crawford.

He added that he also enjoys teaching what he has learned. “It gives me the opportunity to review what I need to know.”

Cody Crawford on the bench (Amy Crawford, Facebook)

“It definitely helped me grow,” Crawford said of the overall effort. This includes hard-earned lessons in prioritization and time management.

“I remember there was a time when I agreed to do nine pairs of skis in one week, and that was finals week,” Crawford said. “And I had a race this weekend.”

It was a solid week of late nights, fueled by anxiety and caffeine.

“It’s a great way to work on my free time,” Crawford said. Over the course of the year, he skis, starts on the offensive and defensive lines of Mustang football, and throws the shot put and the discus on the track. Summer is dedicated to camps.

Cody’s Tune and Wax is a good experience to have in his back pocket, but he said his most immediate ambition is to get a college football scholarship.

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