Perhaps the only Argentina-based ski company we know about.
Andres Martinez told us about his company in May 2013. Two models of skis in May 2013: The "Cucumber" all-mountain ~101-105mm waisted ski and the "Shane" 128mm-waisted powder ski.Wood core, carbon fiber sandwich constructions, with wood veneer topsheets. More information to come after we translate the site!
The factory is integrated into a trailer built by Jael and I. The entire trailer is constructed from recycled or reclaimed material less the axle and LED lights required for driving. To build a set of skis in the factory requires less than 12 oz of unleaded fuel used to power a 2000 watt Honda Inverter. We built the trailer in Olancha, CA, and had it registered in Bishop. Jael, Noa and I, and our two dogs can stay out back at 6 day intervals before needing to re-up on the basics. The factory is stocked with material and fuel for 26 pairs of skis. 4 minutes to park ,open, prep and start building. One side of the trailer opens up and forms an extended platform with a safety wall. I've built skis at chair 2, Mammoth, out near Crowley Lake, the desert and upcoming on Skid Row, Los Angeles.
I built the Scotty Bob factory in Silverton, the Auto Win factory in China, trained Pete Wagner from Telluride, built the Yama factory in Northridge, set up the original crew of 5150 Snowboards, Jason Kanes, did the original prototype development for Arbor Snowboards, Chris. Back in the day, many of Kemper Snowboards prototypes. Designed the Yama Deep V Tool, Yama DCB and QCB. Built the factory that Coda Boards are built in. Started the crew of Beau Woods, Paul Sethi, the largest stateside wood core manufacturer before the industry went to China. Built Famly Snowboards, Trailer Trash Snowboards, Freeload in Canada, and a host of other bitchen small companies on the West Coast. For more info check out the YAMA MONOBOARD page.
An idea whose time has come in 2009? Custom skis built to your tip, waist and tail widths, flex, camber, rocker and rise, length...etc. with a core of Finland birch in 3 hours for $333 (with a 2-season warranty and money-back guarantee if you're not stoked about them) from a trailer behind a pickup truck? Yes. You can even order a pair of "test skis" for $222 to test your geometry and flex pattern with a plain-vanilla clear topsheet and no frills, then order your $333 final boards. Cool idea.
Finland birch wood core, sintered 2000 base, knitted fiberglass in triaxial and double bias, rockwell 52 edge stock, and formulated resin.
Michael Lish promotes his "on-site, on-demand" ski manufacturing business. Contact Michael at (760) 709-6413 or see his site. Check it out.
He claims a robust background in building skis and ski factories (see "more info link above". We hope to ski a pair and find out if they're a great deal !
See some comments at other sites:
One of the main success stories of the freeride ski movement, started around 2002. [click here for the interesting and detailed history] Similar to Armada in market segment leadership and success. Good selection of various widths, flexes and lengths to suit pretty much any location and skier. Some love 'em, some don't. Most people who don't like 'em focus on the "image" 4FRNT is supposed to have...bunk we say. Rowdy skis for rowdy skiers. They work. Lots of successes in competitions and good reputation for off-piste die-hards. During the last few years, 4FRNT skis have been manufactured by Elan in Slovenia and by Sarco in Tunisia instead of the original sites in the US. Originally outfitted with VIST bindings from Italy, 4FRNT has chosen Tyrolia binding packages for its lineup. Eye witnesses have seen 4FRNT skis in Zermatt with "Made in Tunisia" stickers. Could those be collectors' items? Maybe the same factory as Movement and G3 in those days? 2008 saw production go completely to the Elan plant in Slovenia with a prototyping facility in the state of Washington. Now a mature company with a steady following.
"The Boarding Company". Small company with skis and snowboards manufactured to their specs by Nobile of Poland. Sandwich construction with Beech/Poplar wood cores, triax fiberglass, carbon stringers and ABS sidewalls. "Progressive radius" geometry on the frontside "freeski" model (similar to Kessler geometry at first glance). Powder ski is rockered tip and tail, flat underfoot (2009 model). Both come in "hard" and "soft" flexes. They also design and sell wakeboards and wakeskates..
"Particular attention has been paid to the selection of raw materials. The assembly of fundamentally different elements: wood; titan; fibreglass or carbonfibre, demands from the modern epoxyglue, extreme resistence and strength, combined with great flexibility and vibration absorption. The key lies in the viscoelasticity of the assembling and in the tuning of the bending strength, to the needs of the individual skier. "
AK Ski-USA is the FORMER distributor for AK Ski, Swiss Engineering products in the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Aldo Kuonen (his initials AK form the company logo) manufactures high performance alpine skis, emphasizing lightness, maneuverability, stability and speed. We embrace Aldo's philosophy of skiing and his dedication to quality and precision. "WE REGRET WE WILL NO LONGER IMPORT THESE TRULY EXCEPTIONAL SKIS."
Created by Aldo Kuonen (formerly of Rossignal and Atomic racing departments for 20 years). Highly regarded, high-performance, highest quality skis from Switzerland. Maybe 2,500 pairs per year. Very interesting lineup and designs. "Freerace" skis anyone? The "Black Race" ski has the same material on the top as on the bottom to "reduce negative strain". Female-specific ski too.
US importer at http://www.akski-usa.com no longer importing and distributing AK skis.
"AlpControl has had to overcome two challenges. Maintaining torsional rigidity in a wide shovel and providing enough meat for binding mountain. Not all carbon fiber is created equal. There are over 50 types of material on the market and the strength can vary by a factor of 6. Only the better grades offer an advantage over the best fiberglass cloth for ski making. Carbon is up to twice as strong for around half the weight provided the mats are laid up properly. The main problem is cost, with carbon fibre costing 100x that of glass. The Black Powder uses the strongest “high tensile” fiber: the Toray T700S. This has a high tolerance to shock. It has been developed specifically for the ski by Eurocarbon. The knitted triaxial weave eliminates the risk of delamination. Binding mounting standards require a significant amount of material. In a pure carbon ski that means the ski will be too stiff. The AlpControl has developed its patented “partial core” technology. This uses a tapered central wood core covered with carbon with pure carbon both at both ends of the ski. The skis have been designed by world class ski maker Alain ZANCO (http://www.az-ski.com). Zanco was given a tough spec, the ski should be able to handle powder, hard snow, crust, corn and crud. In short the normal conditions encountered by an all mountain skier in a single day. Two skis lengths are being made: BLACK POWDER 163 side cut 110-70-100 poids 1770 g/pair (3.9 lb), surface 1350 cm² BLACK POWDER 175 side cut 120-78-109 poids 1980 g/pair (4.3 lb), surface 1600 cm² Compare that to something like a Dynaft 7 Summits Superlight at 2460g in 170cm with a 113mm shovel. The 78mm width is, in our opinion, ideal for backcountry use where you often have hair traverses and have to follow or make tracks in deep snow. AlpControl point out that the skis have proper 2mm “backcountry” edges. Carbon fiber skis are nothing new. Goode already has a full lineup but the results can be disappointing. The website http://skitour.fr says that the Goode BC82 (82mm underfoot), initially announced at 2120 grams actually weigh 2550 grams. There is always some difference in ski weight but 160 grams per ski is pretty high. "
AlpControl claims its carbon fiber skis are the lightest made. They list the 163cm ski (110-70-100) at 1790 grams/pair and the 175cm ski (120-78-109) at 1995 grams/pair.
They also make an innovative, lightweight carbon-fibre leg-to-boot structure device for aiding in pressuring skis during alpine descents with mountaineering boots (turn your mountaineering boots into downhill boots). The skis were designed by the long-time ski building guru Alain Zanco (AZ Atelier).
Many people don't know the large nordic-oriented Alpina makes some alpine skis. Mostly lightweight, foam core cap constructions. Twin-tip blade ski for radical park action.
From December, 2009 website:
"We can't share too much information at this point, but let us just tell you that Project Sherpa will change the way you climb mountains. It will change the way you ski. It will change the way you snowshoe. Rethink Ultralight Mountaineering Our philosophy is to bring you premium gear at the most affordable price. We're using carbon fiber, titanium, and bulletproof polymer to create the most innovative mountaineering products in years."
New ski mountaineering company by Kyle Hart in Seattle, WA, USA said to launch its innovative ski in 2010. The first prototype drawing released to EpicSki.com showed the ski is 99cm long. It's an asymmetrical twin tip design with a 130/105/125 sidecut. Stay tuned for more info in 2010.
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