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How we do it better: Flex Testing and Race Skis

Posted by Matt Liebsch on Nov 1st 2013

The Flex Tester
 
Three years ago, Gear West began development with Segla Engineering on our Signature Flex Tester.  As we discussed in a previous post on FasterSkier, the goal was to "unlock the 'black box' mystery of cross country ski flex analysis".  Since then, development has never really stopped.  The flex tester software has been updated to allow us record the entire dynamic response under load and to report the total force coming down within the kick zone under that load. The hardware itself has also seen numerous upgrades including more consistent machined aluminum sensor caps, protective railings and foam inserts, a 36" integrated display, and a label printer that lets us quickly print out flex graphs that can be placed directly ON the ski for quick reference.
 
We've been busy flexing skis
 
What does all this mean?  When combined with our constant research correlating flex data with ski performance, it means we can make the most accurate predictions of a ski's fit and performance characteristics.  Furthermore, it allows us the most transparency in the industry.  Other fleet and flex analyses rely on an expert "feeling" the ski and making an immediate judgment.  This isn't to say that these analyses are wrong or can be quickly dismissed; the differences between an amazing ski and an underperforming one are vast and can be easily felt by a well practiced hand.  However, there is no way to verify or share these results or, importantly, compare similar skis to find the minute differences that will push one over the other.  We share all the data we collect with you via a personalized web page (for example, Matt Liebsch's fleet is available here). With it, you can compare your skis side by side or try to draw your own conclusions from the data.  This last point is important as if forces us to stay honest and ensure that the judgments we make are ones we can defend.
 

Matt Liebsch's favorite skis
 
A flex analysis including all this information is only $50.00 for up to six pairs of skis.  Flex analyses can be set up by calling 877-473-4327 or ordering via this page.  Flex analysis data can also be included in the purchase of any new race level ski for $25.00.  Looking for a Fischer SpeedMax?  We've already flex tested all 150+ pairs we have in stock, and to prove you're getting the best skis possible, you get access to the data as well as our Race Ready World Cup Hot Box with your purchase.
 
Here at Gear West, we're pushing the Nordic industry forward to get you the fastest skis in the world.  If you have any questions about flex analysis or any of our other products or services, please call us at 877-473-4327 or email info@gearwest.com.
 
 

Testing continues on snow

-Posted by Matt Liebsch on Nov 1st 2013

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