Asnes USGI Combat Skis

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MikeK

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby MikeK » Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:38 am

No I think like anything that has been developed in recent years, you'll see a difference. I mean does a 1970s Toyota p/up drives like a modern one?

Some may say the 1970s version did it better. In some cases maybe. Maybe simpler, higher quality, etc.

I knew the topsheet aspect was going to come up. I don't even look at graphics, but I think there is a big difference in a ski that is perhaps thinner and reinforced with fiberglass and built with a torsion cap construction. I personally think a little more sidecut is not a bad thing. 10mm is pretty minimal for a ski this wide. It's not so noticeable in fresh snow and neither is the stiffness. If fact the only bad thing I can say about them in freshies is that they don't float enough, and well, I think I can say that about any ski in this width class.

I felt the weight and camber on the stiffer, rougher snow. This ski is also, IMO, really easy to snowplow. Straighter skis tend to do it better I think. Some of the more shaped skis tend to wander around when you use a snowplow brake.

I don't expect this ski to be a quiver killer, but I do think it could be an excellent intro to BC XC for DH skiers as I said. It's cheap, you have to learn how to wax, and it's fairly rugged.

For me this ski was more about getting back into waxing. I'm likely going to use it on more smooth, open terrain where it will excel. Hopefully I can dial in the wax pocket length to get the best glide out of it. I know it has it, it has the camber - it just needs a little more finesse than I have.

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby MikeK » Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:40 pm

Just did a quick back to back gliding test with the Eon vs the USGI. 25F, 3 thin layers of blue V30 on the USGI. ~75cm pocket forward from my boot heel. Eons 195 with pin bindings, USGI 200 with pin bindings. I switched back and forth as quick as I could to feel the differences.

I also realized, at this temp I'm kind of the edge of the V30, so I tried again with two thin layers of V45 over that. Results were surprisingly similar, telling me perhaps the wax really was right on it's edge of performance. The V45 had a touch more grip it felt like, but still had a few slipped kicks. I did this because I wanted to try to take the waxology out of the equation and just compare how the skis glide.

I do have different glide wax on them, so it's not apples to apples exactly. Blue CH6 on the USGI, Violet CH7 on the Eon. Violet is in the optimal range, Blue is just out.

The snow is a few days old, granular but not fully transformed as it's been cold. It's the kind of snow that doesn't really have much adhesion to itself, or anything really.

In the snow that was not tracked, the difference was less than you might think, less than a foot of sliding difference. I tried both kicking and pushing myself with just my poles. It wasn't a lot but I could tell I was on wax vs. the Eon.

On snow that I had just tracked and packed, the difference was more pronounced. I could feel an appreciable difference with just my poles and I'd get a little more slide on each kick. When I'd get up to speed and in a rhythm, and then stop to see how much further I'd glide, the results were similar though, maybe a foot or so.

Another thing is I can kick a lot more aggressively with the Eon. It felt really light switching between the two. I had some minuscule slippage here and there on my kicks with the Eon, but perhaps my technique is more attuned to waxless due to skiing those for so long. I didn't think it would be that noticeable but going back to back like that I could feel a huge difference. I didn't notice the weight during the actual striding so much, a little on the kick, but I definitely felt it every time I had to maneuver the skis.

I noticed the stability difference I was talking about as well. I'm not sure the main culprit of this, but my foot felt much more planted on the Eon. I don't think it's camber as I've got some cambered sticks that don't have that feel.

I would say the feel is more than the actual sliding distance per kick. Over many km's it would certainly add up to being significantly faster (5280 kicks and you're a mile ahead of me). But I can actually feel the scales on the Eon. It's like princess and the pea. It's not much, but I can tell there is something under my foot. The wax certainly does feel nicer. I knew exactly what ski I was on without looking.

We could get all nutz and scientific about wax speed but that's not my goal. I know wax is faster in theory, otherwise racers wouldn't use it. The idea is how much different is it to another ski.

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fisheater

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby fisheater » Sun Feb 21, 2016 12:23 pm

Hello,
It has been interesting to read this forum. It is really a credit to all involved that this forum is so geographically diverse and yet all share a love of skiing in both a knowledgeable and cordial fashion. Since this is my introduction I will comment on my username. I like to catch fish and eat fish. I care about conservation, but where I live in Michigan fish populations can handle my family eating a few fish dinners. I hope that does not offend too many of you or the cordial nature of this site.
On to my question! I come at Nordic skiing from an alpine background. My son "The Mad Bomber" is definitely is more interested in alpine skiing. Unfortunately for the "Mad Bomber", I just do not enjoy paying for too much alpine skiing in Michigan. I take him out a few times a year, but for him and I to ski it is an expensive afternoon. I would like to get him an inexpensive BC package. If we had snow some of my local trails are steep enough to require a bit of side step even on my S-Bound-112's. I need him to be on a ski that allows for him to wedge powerfully. I also need to set him up inexpensively. There is very little interest backcountry skiing in my area or really in the lower peninsula at all. The only BC ski I have seen in the entire lower peninsula is a Alpina Discovery 70. It is different in the upper peninsula, that is where I saw my first pair of Karhu Guides. They were white in color, and I knew that someday I would ski on something along those lines.
I am usually more to the point. Do you guys have any sources for inexpensive gear? Could a 110 lb. 13 year old boy kick and glide on easy terrain on a 200 cm Asnes? I do not know what boot I would put him on, but the binding would be a 3-pin cable. Yes, I do know that I would be pushing the envelope, but at 13 there is a lot of gear that a kid uses. He has received a new kayak and a new mountain bike in the last 16 months. That does not include gear for wrestling, football, basketball, and track. It gets expensive. I wouldn't mind a pair of these myself as an alternative to the SB-112's. I believe the skis are now available from Colemans.
It has been a pleasure to read this forum. BTW, Cliff I enjoyed your home photos, It does resemble Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Feb 21, 2016 12:44 pm

Welcome, master fish eater!! You certainly will not offend my clan- my family are voracious eaters of fish. I am primarily a fisher of brook trout- but my wife is a fly fisher (she fly fishes with her father).

I would assert that a 200cm Asnes Combat ski would be fine for a skier as light as your son- at least in a XC context. My oldest son is also 13 and weighs about the same- he is using the 200cm Asnes on occasion (he also has a 185cm Epoch that he prefers for XCD skiing). The Combats are double-cambered but no where near as much and as stiff as an effective track ski. On gentle terrain and with appropriate use of grip wax- he should be fine with a 200cm. But at his weight, I would predict the 200cm to very difficult to control on steep slopes (either climbing or turning). At 115lbs, I would expect that the camber will only flatten out with his full weight on one ski.

Good "cheap" boots? Ebay.

I have been backcountry Nordic skiing with my kids since a very early age (I have started my youngest (2) this winter a bit). It is an incredible way to get out and be in Nature with your kids in the winter!

My oldest daughter has a real love for high-speed Alpine skiing too. She does enjoy BC Nordic skiing as well- as long as I incorporate some downhill runs on our tours! She is much lighter than my oldest- she is on a 165cm Eon.

Our family has a suite of Madshus/Karhu XCD skis (e.g. XCD GT/Eon; XCD 10th Mtn/Epoch; XCD Guide/Annum). I have to admit that current hybrid XCD skis have improved much more than the Madshus XCDs (e.g. S-Bounds)- but with 4 children, the Madshus XCD line has been much more affordable.
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Feb 21, 2016 2:18 pm

And I can't afford to downhill ski at a resort either- especially not with 4 kids.

My wife comes from an Alpine skiing background. Her mother was a manager at a ski hill- she used to ski 7 days a week for free! She and her brother do things on downhill skis that are definitely beyond my skill level! My wife has become totally turned on to backcountry Nordic skiing since we met. We used to do a few multi-day trips every winter- before our two youngest were born. For now we are all more than content with our backyard BC skiing.
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Feb 21, 2016 2:32 pm

Oh- and check out the "Gear Basket" thread if you are looking for a good deal.

There's link to a wicked set of 203cm Karhu 10th Mtn Tours- I cannot get the seller to respond- so perhaps they're sold...
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

connyro

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby connyro » Sun Feb 21, 2016 8:58 pm

LC, et al: Do you guys have little indentations/grooves in the sidewalls of your Combats? (I think the grooves are for attachment points for skins.) I ask because I believe my Combats are slightly different than some others, as mine have sidewall material and some have mentioned that theirs do not. Also, does your metal edges extend right up to the tips? Again, I ask because some who use those skis mention their tips getting chewed up, while mine have metal edges that extent to nearly the tip, falling short of the tip by 1/2 inch or so. I am wondering if mine are somehow different than most others. Mine are also pretty heavy: nearly 7 lbs for the 210s. These skis are the ticket though for BC-Xc skiing in varied conditions, but I feel that if I lose any weight, I'll be too light for these skis, and I'm not a lightweight...

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lilcliffy

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Feb 21, 2016 9:04 pm

Hey Connyro,

Mine do have the grooves on the side; and the steel edges extend almost to the very tip (the tips are very stiff).

But the sidewall is solid wood- with a white finish on them- I can see the wood grain through it.

Where I am seeing wear is at the tips, where the top sheet is laminated to the wood.
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby lilcliffy » Sun Feb 21, 2016 9:06 pm

CR- did you get the 210s?

Although they are relatively stiff for a Nordic ski with that profile- I don't find I have any problems compressing the camber to engage the wax pocket.

And although they are stiffly cambered, I find them reasonable to control on the downhill- but certainly not as easy to turn as a modern XCD/Tele ski.
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

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MikeK

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Re: Asnes USGI Combat Skis

Postby MikeK » Sun Feb 21, 2016 9:07 pm

lilcliffy wrote:Hey Connyro,

Mine do have the grooves on the side; and the steel edges extend almost to the very tip (the tips are very stiff).

But the sidewall is solid wood- with a white finish on them- I can see the wood grain through it.

Where I am seeing wear is at the tips, where the top sheet is laminated to the wood.


Mine are the same.

That top sheet is going to gouge to hell. It's soft plastic. I wouldn't worry about it in the least.


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