2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

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lilcliffy

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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby lilcliffy » Fri Dec 22, 2017 8:40 pm

D'hostie wrote:Tip seems a bit softer than other reviews would suggest. Particularly in torsion. If I hold the tip of the ski against the wall and twist at the binding I can get a hell of a lot of deflection. More than any other ski in this class.

Which skis are you comparing this to? I guess we have to assume that the Combat Nato is actually the same ski as the Ingstad- I didn't which is why I started a separate review from yours. But- if I group at least my Combat Nato with similar skis like the Eon and the E-109, it definitely has a stiffer tip in every dimension (I have flexed them all repeatedly since your post- and I have skied them all this week). (It also has a stiffer tip than my E-99).

I didn't notice any remarkable difference in trail breaking with the tip. It seemed about on par with other skis in this class although some stiffer snow may change that thought.

Again- what are you comparing it to? And- what were you skiing on? Have you actually tried this ski in truly deep snow?

Descending was what I found to be its weakest attribute. I found it was neither very willing to initiate of very easy to hold in a turn once started. I'm not entirely sure why this is true as nothing on the ski stands out as being off. The grabbiness of the edges was a detriment in turn initiation on a groomed surface, combined with its length and lack of willingness to want to initiate a carved turn. Mostly the skis skidded, grabbed, and skidded. This reminds me characteristically of a ski that has too little torsional stiffness to hold an edge and hence why I investigated this. Not really a huge issue as this is not what this ski is meant for, but it is the weakest in its class when it comes to this.

Again- I would appreciate what you are comparing this to?

Overall, I find it the worst in class for downhill performance.

Compared to....?
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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby lilcliffy » Sat Dec 23, 2017 7:00 am

I do agree with you D'hostie- this is a XC ski.
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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby D'hostie » Sat Dec 23, 2017 7:10 pm

lilcliffy wrote:I do agree with you D'hostie- this is a XC ski.


There's nothing wrong with that, and I find it very nice to ski in unbroken snow but in comparable conditions, I found it more challenging to Telemark with than an Eon or S Bound. It's obviously capable as shown by videos and such.

FWIW, none of those skis are torsionally that stiff, but this one seems extra noodley in the tip. And the others seem to just skid whereas this one would catch and slip - largely a function of super sharp, beefy edges though. I caught them quite a few times and crashed during initial testing. Even with K+G they were catchy. Edges are nice as a saftey net, but I guess on a ski that soft, I don't see the need for race tuned edges...

I also found something else that will probably make your head spin, but I did a back to back gliding test with it in a broken track. My average speed was less than 1/10 of a mph different between this ski and waxless ski (S Bound 78) over the same mile of gentle terrain. I did not have a HR monitor, so I may have tried harder with the waxless ski, but I was quite surprised because the wax ski felt faster. The wax setup was great too and the glide and grip were excellent for the test.

What I found, in particular, was there was no need to kick or pole down mild slopes (typical of wax vs waxless) with the Ingstad, which is nice for touring. Waxless seems to be slower gliding with weight on both skis - which makes sense.

Breaking trail and such, I'm not sure there is a huge difference except that a wax ski allows for more tuning to optimize to the particular condition.

In retrospect, I wish I would have bought a Nansen. I think that ski would have performed more like I expected this ski to perform.

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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:01 am

Something isn't adding up with your description of your Iingstad's tip- compared to my Combat Nato...

The tip on my ski is stiffer in every dimension compared to any of our Eons and the E109- it is also stiffer than the
Nordic-rockered E99- it is comparable to my non-rockered E99...

Can't compare it to the Fischer 78- but it doesn't feel wimpier than the 88 I flexed in the shop last week...

Regardless- my experience with the my Combat Nato is that they are deep snow shredding machines. The XCD performance of both the Eon and the E109 is more impressive until the snow gets truly deep.

I do already have a 195cm Annum for deep snow- but I find the Combat Nato more manageable with my soft XC boots- and the Combat Nato blows the Annum away once the snow settles.

If the new Ingstad is as stable as my Combat Nato- but as easy to initiate turns as the E109 :shock: ......
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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby D'hostie » Sun Dec 24, 2017 10:40 am

Well, maybe they are different skis, at least maybe in the dimesnionality there is some difference? The other possibility is variation, but I'd say if there is as much as you say, then that's not a good thing.

Try this: Take the tip, press it firmly against a wall and grab right at your binding and twist. I can twist my Ingstad plus/minus about 45 degrees. It twists a lot. Not sure if this the root of it's lack of turning response or just a red herring (Norwegian joke?) I'm chasing? It could also be that the tips are very, very devoid of rocker and I've become used to that. But honestly, I don't notice a huge difference in these tips and the Eon in shape. I've held them side by side.

All I can say for sure is this, my skis seem very resistant to turning.

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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:26 pm

D'hostie wrote:Try this: Take the tip, press it firmly against a wall and grab right at your binding and twist. I can twist my Ingstad plus/minus about 45 degrees. It twists a lot.

Did this following your first post- there is flex but no twisting. Again- significantly less twisting than my Eons and my E109.

I stripped and waxed up my Combat Natos last night in preparation for lots of snow tomorrow, and then very cold weather following.

I repeatedly flexed this ski- all over the place- contrasting it with all of my other skis.

It is a bit unique. The camber profile is low compared to not only the Eon and the E109- it is as low-cambered as my 195cm Annum. And unlike the E99- which even if I press with all the might of both hands, is almost impossible to close the camber- the Combat Nato is relatively easy to close the camber- just like the Eon and E109. In fact, the E109 appears stiffer in the hands. HOWEVER- when put the tail on the floor and try to reverse flex these skis in to a reverse bow- the Combat Nato is by far the stiffest and the most resistant. Once reverse-flexed the Eon has a round flex- with the tip noticeably softer than the tail. The E109 has an extremely soft tip, compared to the rest of its flex pattern. Although I can easily squash my Combat Nato- it is extremely resistant beyond that point- in fact I cannot get it to truly reverse flex- it is too resistant.

We had significant snow early in the day, followed by hours of ice pellets that froze in to a crust.

I went out this morning with the E109 Tours, thinking they would float on top and I could go up to the upper field and do some laps. The tip of the E109 floated on top of the crusty refrozen snow, but the rest of the ski broke through and got stuck in icy, granular snow- it SUCKED.

Turned around and grabbed the Combat Nato- its tip carved a clean track thru that icy, frozen granular crud like a grader- it was amazing. Went up to the upper field and rode some wide open turns for about half an hour. Was the downhill skiing mind-blowing? No- but breakable, icy, granular crust is- well- a mess. The XC performance of the Combat Nato was so impressive that I continued on for the next 2 hours and just shredded some miles on VERY difficult snow.

Don't know what to tell you Mike...I love this ski.
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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby D'hostie » Sun Dec 24, 2017 7:39 pm

Well, it sounds like quite a bit different ski. Sounds like it acts more like your 109.

I'll take a video. It feels like I could break the ski it twists so much , and it's not just one ski, both are the same. Also my camber is not low, it's the same as my Eon and S78. The force to close is exactly the same.

Also, I don't agree with you on the Eon - to have a round flex, you need near equal stiffness tip and tail. They feel very similar stiffness to me, and the flex feels round. S78 feels the same way but stiffer all around. Its camber strength is the same, but to reverse it or twist it, it's much stiffer. The tip is very stiff on the S78. It goes S78, Eon, then Ingstad in terms of stiffness. I've also had a couple pairs of S Bounds of various widths and a couple pairs of Eons, all were the exact same. No significant variation.

I agree my Ingstad feels stiffer in the tail than in the tip. I think the flex is poor for turning as both the Eon and S Bounds feel more balanced and round.

If this is ski variation, it's unacceptable. If it's design, it's unacceptable. This ski should be a lot more balanced for XC and DH than its competitors. And duly so if it is a military ski. I hate to say it, but my USGI ski actually was easier to ski DH than this Ingstad. And I'm not a huge fan of that ski.

Personally, if I was going to put in the BC miles in mountainous terrain, I'd choose the Eon hands down over this ski. Cheap, made in China, ugly graphics, but a design that has stood the test of time. Often copied, but never replicated.

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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby lilcliffy » Mon Dec 25, 2017 2:33 pm

D'hostie wrote:Also, I don't agree with you on the Eon - to have a round flex, you need near equal stiffness tip and tail.

Mike- what I mean is that the flex of the Eon is "rounder" than either my E109 or my Combat Nato. BUT- it is certainly not as round flexing as any of our Guides/Annums or 10th Mtns/Epochs. Our Eons- depsite being soft and "roundish"- have noticeably more of a XC flex than the wider, rounder Annum/Epoch- and I see and feel that the tip on our Eons is softer than the rest of the flex of this ski.

The tip on my Combat Nato is stiffer than any of our Eons and the two E109s we have.

That being said, both the camber underfoot, and the tail of the Combat Nato are stiffer than its tip (the Combat Nato does not have a "roundish" flex). And once the camber is squashed underfoot, the Combat Nato has a very resistant flex.

I think the flex is poor for turning as both the Eon and S Bounds feel more balanced and round.

Yes-and?

This ski should be a lot more balanced for XC and DH than its competitors. And duly so if it is a military ski.

Why?

I hate to say it, but my USGI ski actually was easier to ski DH than this Ingstad. And I'm not a huge fan of that ski.

Well- I am a big fan of our USGI skis- but, my Combat Natos are WAAAY more manageable downhill than the USGIs we have.

Personally, if I was going to put in the BC miles in mountainous terrain, I'd choose the Eon hands down over this ski.

Well- again I disagree- my 210cm Combat Nato is twice the XC ski that my 205cm Eons are, and it is still very manageable and fun on MODERATE slopes (I would need a Telemark boot and binding to ski either of these skis on very steep terrain). Personally, I would NOT choose either of these skis if I wanted to shred downhill- I choose more downhill-oriented skis for that. Neither the Ingstad/Combat Nato or the Eon have ever been promoted as being downhill-oriented skis.

From my perspective the Combat Nato is a distance-oriented ski- so, I am not sure what you are arguing about?

If you find the Eon and 78 to be better downhill skis- great. But, my limited experience suggests that downhill and xc performance are at opposite ends of a camber/flex continuum- a ski that truly excels as a downhill ski must do so with some loss of XC performance- this is at least my experience.

The Eon is easier to turn than the Combat Nato- never said it wasn't. But- in turn- the Combat Nato is a better XC ski than the Eon- the Eon feels almost as dead as the Epoch under my XC foot- and the deeper the snow gets, the more the Eon sucks.

Which brings me to this-

Clearly your Ingstad is different than my Combat Nato- don't know why.

Sorry to hear you are so disappointed with your Ingstad- you seemed pretty excited about when you first got them!
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Last edited by lilcliffy on Tue Dec 26, 2017 7:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby D'hostie » Mon Dec 25, 2017 7:21 pm

Lot's of stuff I think you can figure out on your own there... but I'll say this: if I wanted to take out the entire NATO force in wintertime, all I'd have to do is funnel them into a ravine :lol:

And of course I was excited about them then. I didn't know how they skied! Lots of hype and anticipation lead to a somewhat anti-climatic head.

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Re: 2015 Åsnes Combat NATO

Postby lilcliffy » Mon Dec 25, 2017 7:40 pm

Not if you can outrun the enemy that's trudging through deep snow, as you fly on the snow.

The very small Finnish Special Forces held off the Red Army for months with nothing but heavy wooden XC skis, leather bindings, and borrowed anti-tank rifles.

Nordic touring skis don't have to be short and easy turning for them to be perfectly acceptable mountain touring skis.

And- if your Ingstads are so different and so terrible- then perhaps you should start your own review of them- seeing how they are clearly a different ski- or you can just continue the review you already started. :?:
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