Asnes USGI Combat Skis

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Feb 21, 2016 10:58 pm

connyro wrote:Maybe black birch? It's in the same range as hickory as far as density and weight and also a European species...


Cool- didn't know there was a European "hard" birch...I will have to look it up.

"Black" birch is an alternate common name for "sweet" birch (Betula lenta). Do you have sweet/black birch as far north as you are (Upper Peninsula right?)- or just yellow and white birch?
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connyro

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby connyro » Sun Feb 21, 2016 11:04 pm

Lots of yellow birch and some white here but that's it. Where I grew up in NH we had black birch in the forest. When you cut it, it smells of wintergreen. Very high BTU firewood.

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Feb 21, 2016 11:09 pm

Yeah I think that the furthest north black birch grows is extreme southern Maine.

Yellow birch buds and twigs smell and taste of wintergreen- but I have heard before that even the wood of black birch smells of it.

And you can smell the wintergreen as you cut it? Very cool.
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MikeK

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby MikeK » Thu Feb 25, 2016 9:56 pm

Combat skis data compared to modern NATO ski:

USGI Specs.png


Measurements of two skis with sequential serial numbers:

USGI Camber Gap.jpg


Average of two skis compared with modern version:

Combat Skis Compare.jpg


There is quite a difference! Very good match between the two skis though in terms of stiffness.

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby MikeK » Thu Feb 25, 2016 10:16 pm

What's amazing when I stand on one of each the modern and the vintage side by side is how much nicer the modern ski feels.

The Ingstad feels so soft and forgiving, and the way it flexes feels so smooth. It's not linear, but that's a good thing. It feels soft at first and then firms up where you want it.

The USGI feels like a 2x4. It's stiff and linear. Not really a feeling I like for a ski where I want to feel the terrain.

I would say 30+ years of engineering and you can certainly feel a difference just standing on them. I know skiing them they will be like night and day.

Also the lightness of the Ingstad in hand compared to the old ski is incredible. It feels feathery The way it's tips and tail flex are beautiful, there is no really feeling in the old ski. It's stiff and planky.

The Ingstad feels like a finely crafted piece of jewelry, the old ski feels a bit like it was made in a shed.

I think a lot more time and money went into both the development and the production of the new ski, and it shows.

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Thu Feb 25, 2016 10:31 pm

That camber test seems to clearly demonstrate that the USGI Combats are a double-cambered XC. The wax pocket on my 210cm do not flatten out with over 90lbs of weight on them.

I agree the Ingstads are clearly a "better" balanced XCD ski.

But the USGI Combats remain excellent backcountry-xcountry skis. I'll be interested to test which ski offers more effective flotation...
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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby MikeK » Thu Feb 25, 2016 10:42 pm

Float might be more similar than you think. I don't expect either of these to be really deep snow skis despite what 'ole Gamme says. We have much better options in the US and Canada for stuff like that I think.

I think you will really love the new NATO skis. When you get them, handle them back to back and play with them a bit, just so you can get an idea of how much better balanced, smoother flexing and lighter the new ones are. Careful with the edges too!

I'm actually on the verge of getting a small wax pocket with the Ingstad. I don't think my floor is flat enough to tell for sure but I had my wife check earlier, she could slip a paper in right in front of my toes (I was standing where I would mount the bindings) and slide it back a little, I could breath and it would slide back, so it's right on the edge. It's a good spot, it's where I want it.

Crazy thing is, I get the same thing with vintage skis. No wax pocket with half my weight. So despite the way they flex up to a particular gap, I think near 100lbs or a little shy, they are closer than you might think.

I don't know what I'd call the vintage ski. It doesn't really feel like double camber, and it doesn't look like it when you flex it tip to tail, at least it doesn't look the same as the other ones I have. It might just be a really stiff single.

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Fri Feb 26, 2016 12:31 am

MikeK wrote:
I'm actually on the verge of getting a small wax pocket with the Ingstad. I don't think my floor is flat enough to tell for sure but I had my wife check earlier, she could slip a paper in right in front of my toes (I was standing where I would mount the bindings) and slide it back a little, I could breath and it would slide back, so it's right on the edge. It's a good spot, it's where I want it.


Wicked- this is exactly what I was hoping for with the Ingstad. The 210s should do it!
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anrothar

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby anrothar » Mon Apr 11, 2016 12:36 am

Ordered up a couple of pairs of these in 210. Right now they're just sitting in our garage. Most of the accessible snow we have now is crust in the morning, isothermal by mid day, so the season is pretty much over. I'm planning to just mount and ski one pair, and the other I'm going to butcher. Planning to remove the plastic top sheet, remove the binding area metal plate, shave the excessive amount of wood down a little, then refinish them. I'm curious to see how much weight I can remove.

Goals with the to-be-modified pair:

-Lighter weight. I'll be happy with 1/4 lb per ski, thrilled with 1/2 lb and am fantasizing about chopping a full pound off per ski. Shouldn't be too unreasonable considering the weights of today's skis, especially considering the metal plate in the binding area. Plastic topsheet looks heavier than paint/laquer as well.
-Maintain wax pocket
-Softer flexing tip/tail

They're cheap enough, even with absurdly expensive shipping to AK, that if I screw up and the second pair breaks, it's not a big loss and worth the cost for the learning experience.

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Mon Apr 11, 2016 8:36 am

Anrothar-again awesome stuff!

Please make sure you keep us up to date with your mod.

Those USGI skis are very heavy aren't they? And there is a lot of wood to work with!
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