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Author Topic: Camber  (Read 4430 times)

Offline Inabell

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Camber
« on: September 25, 2010, 12:07:04 pm »
I just dug out a pair of skis I bought with plans to use with berwin bindings and mukluks. After reading the discussion of camber in the skiing section of this site, I stood on them and they totally flattened out. No chance of slipping a piece of paper under the foot section. Does this mean they are of a camber that would make them unsuitable for light backcountry touring?  
« Last Edit: September 25, 2010, 12:44:35 pm by Inabell »

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Re: Camber
« Reply #1 on: September 27, 2010, 06:39:03 am »
Not necessarily.  The ski will not be as fast over packed snow as your glide will be reduced because the wax will be in continual contact with the snow. By the same token, the wax will wear off more quickly than a waxjob on a properly cambered ski. You would see little difference in deep snow where gliding is minimal. Are you planning to pull  a pulk?  Many on this site would suggest you will need full climbing skins or shorter "kicker skins" for adequate traction pulling a sled.

Offline HOOP

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Re: Camber
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2010, 07:17:18 am »
Hi Inabell,

Yardsale covered the issue well.   

Unless you had a perfectly flat floor, or used a X-C ski-shop flat glass platform, the paper test might not be a true indicator.   

Another way to judge the camber is to hold the skis upright base to base, and squeeze them together.  If they have a stiff camber, you will require alot of force to force them together with your hands.   If they tend to clap together without any effort, then they are very soft and will not hold the wax on a cold day, and won't glide well.

You can also use clamps to clamp the skis base to base.  Place the clamp(s) where the boots would be, and close the clamps.   You will be able to judge the stiffness of the camber.   If they resist and push back, you can also use some paper to slide in there to judge where the wax pocket might be.  You can mark the pocket with a permanent marker on the side wall, to assist in waxing. 

If the skis are more like a wet noodle and very soft, they are really more of a downhill ski designed to bend backwards for turn carving, and will not work at all with a kick wax.   But as Yardsale says, if in deep snow and hauling sled, you often need skins anyways for grip due to snow shear, and you can shuffle along with skins.    Sometimes the snow shears so much that I need the kicker skins even without a load just day trip skiing.  That's why I always like to have the kicker skins in my pack.  I have also been caught out in crusty ice snow, even in stiff camber skis,  where I had to re-wax every half hour!   :(

Can you provide the make and model of the skis?   Some of the readers here might know the ski and have an opinion on its camber and performance.

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Offline Inabell

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Re: Camber
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2010, 12:21:02 pm »
The skis are Karhu Kodiak Edge. I found one reference to them as being single camber. I am able to push them together fairly easily with my hands…they seem quite soft.

My plan was to take these along camping and use for day trips and maybe breaking trails around home. My concern is that I spend the $100 plus on berwin bindings and end up with nothing more than long skinny showshoes.

Offline lare

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Re: Camber
« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2010, 09:15:30 pm »
You know, if you can push those skis together with  your ahnds, that means they have some camber - more than enough for winter trekking and poking around in four or more inches of snow.  They will work fine, and yes, they are sort of a sliding snowshoe.  I mentioned in an earlier post that I have a pair of Trak "Bushwackers."  These are only about 160 cm, but they are six inches wide, and I have Berwyn bindings on them.  They don't float as well as snowshoes, but they can be slid along with little effort (they are no-wax).  Asnes used to make a ski like that too, called the Jakt I thiink.

In my opinion (and remember this is jsut an opinion), high camber skis or double camber skiis are made for groomed trails and those guys who wear those skinny plastic suits.  Man, you can really move on them, but they don't work well in the brush.  I'd look for a pair of medium or wide, no-wax tpuring skis, put the Berwyn bindings on them, and use this outfit for bumming around the woods, making your own trails, or trekking.  You get more than a foot of snow (especially loose snow), it gets a lot easier to pull that  pulk with snowshoes.  Lare

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Re: Camber
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2010, 07:13:33 am »
Inabel,

That ski should perform nicely for what you want. It has a no wax bottom, right? Incidentally, skins work fine over no wax bottoms if you are pulling.

Offline Inabell

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Re: Camber
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2010, 10:20:26 am »
Yardsale, these skis have waxable bottoms.

 

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Re: Camber
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2010, 10:47:27 am »
So are you planning to pull a sled with these? They will be fine for just skiing around. However
if you want to pull you will need skins, and lair is right about snowshoes for two reasons. First, there is slightly more purchase with shoes than skis, but more significantly, most sleds will fit in the wider track made by most snowshoes.  The ski track is too narrow to pack the trail for the sled in deep snow and it will be hard work to get anywhere.

Offline Inabell

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Re: Camber
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2010, 11:06:18 am »
Thanks for all the replies and information/opinions. I know very little about skiing other than its something I want to add to my winter activities.

I am not planning to pull a sled with the skis and berwins/mukluks. I want to carry the skis on basecamp trips and use to tool around on day trips. I would also like to use them off trail around home. I know the berwin mukluk combo will not perform like regular boot/binding combos but I would still like to be able feel the kick glide.

I don't have much invested in these skis so if you were me, would you put some berwins on these skis or would you look for something else?

Offline lare

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Re: Camber
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2010, 02:58:15 pm »
Do You already have the Berwyns and mukluks Inabel?  If you do, I would go out and look around (ski-swaps are coming up soon) for a pair of used NO-WAX skis.  I don't know how big you are, but I am about six foot by 200#, and I have a couple old pair of what I call "Beater skis."  One pair is Rossignol and the other is Asnes - the brand doesn't matter - anyway, mine are both 215 cm long, and one pair is 65mm wide, the other is 58 mm.  I have 75 mm, three pins on one pair and Salomon bindings on the other pair.  Either one of these pairs would work with Berwyns.  Get something as wide and as long as you can in no-wax.  Check out the old thrift stores, Good-will, etc. too.

One thing:  if you already have Berwyns and they have the screw insert, take that along with you and make sure the ski is thick enough for the screws.  If it isn't, I guess you could file them down a little, or just let them leave a little "bump" on the bottom of the ski - remember these are no-waxers, so  a bump here or there won't hurt.  Now, you won't be able to do a lot of real fancy, high speed skiing, but you can still do step-turns, herringbone, and stuff like that.  These will work OK for off "groomed tails" and beating around in the woods - the mukluks will keep your feet warm too if you are going to be out there all day.


You know, I have been going to write a post about this:  if anybody is just starting out, and they live somewhere across the area of the Twin Cities, I think you should start with no-wax skis and metal snowshoes.  As much as I like my wooden skis and snowshoes, our winters have changed, and we get a lot more warm weather, rain (never used to get rain in the winter), and just cruddy weather than we used to.  The winters are four to six weeks shorter too.  So, if you get some really good and nice wooden stuff, you are going to want to use it, and then you will suffer through looking at big long gouges and fraying from little ice chunks, exposed roots, and just thin snow.  When we get the nice snow, it is great to get out the wood and the rawhide, but in the meantime, you will get a lot more use out of the synthetic stuff.  If you are going to be at the symposium, look me up - I'm from Eau Claire, so i am familiar with this area.   Lare

Offline K.

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Re: Camber
« Reply #10 on: October 08, 2010, 03:09:04 pm »
I guess I've never understood the concept of using mukluks on backcountry skis. To obtain the benefit of the metal edges, wouldn't you need ankle support to get those edges to bite? I've actually switched to the opposite approach, in which I use my ski boots (leather, 3 pin) on my snowshoes as well as the skis.

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Re: Camber
« Reply #11 on: October 08, 2010, 03:28:40 pm »
Inabel,

Those skis are fine for what you want. I don't know about the bindings you are talking about so I can't comment on them.