QUESTIONS RELATED TO SKINBASED SKIS (maintenance questions below)
Which Skinbased ski is right for me?
Choosing which model of Skinbased ski is best suited for you depends on a variety of factors including intended use, environmental variables such as conditions and terrain, and personal skiing ability. In general, snow trekkers are more applicable to softer snow, lower angled terrain, and forest skiing, while XCD skis are slightly more downhill and open terrain oriented, as well as for firmer snow conditions. For a more detailed look at each of our ski models, see our blogpost: Tips for Choosing the Right Skinbased Ski.
Where can I ski with Skinbased skis?
Almost anywhere! Skinbased skis are built to explore the vast amount of untracked, snowy terrain that gets left out from traditional Nordic and freeride/downhill skiing. Every place from city parks and backyard fields to forests, frozen lakes, rolling hills, and exposed, backcountry fells are great for Skinbased skiing. We find the ideal spots for Skinbased skiing and snow trekking to be those with diverse landscapes and terrain ranging from flat to 20 degrees in steepness.
Are your ski skins made of synthetic or animal fibers?
Both! Any ski skin used in a Skinbased product will have a 60/40 mohair-nylon mix. This combination has been found to be the highest quality, longest lasting, and best performing under a variety of skiing conditions. Skinbased climbing skins are produced in Central Europe and are cut and glued to the skis in Finland.
The mohair, a natural animal hair fiber that we use, is collected from a select group of South African goat farms that have joined together to form the collective organization, Mohair South Africa. Mohair is collected by shearing the wool from Angora goats.
Mohair South Africa is assessed by the independent quality assurance company SAMIC, who inspect both the goat farms and the wool collection process. Mohair South Africa is also a member of the Textile Exchange. The Textile Exchange researches and shares best practices on cultivation, materials, processing, traceability, and product end-use to reduce the environmental impact of the textile industry.
Mohair exported to Europe is regulated by strict residue criteria set by ÖKO-TEX®. ÖKO-TEX® Standard 100 is a worldwide, independent testing and certification system for raw, semi-finished and finished textile products. Our ski skin’s synthetic fiber, nylon (polyamide), is made from by-products of the oil industry.
My skis/ski bases received some scratches. Will this interfere with skiing?
Normal scratches from skiing are mostly cosmetic and are not harmful. If your skis have seen some very heavy use and have collected an exceptional number of scratches on the bases, we recommend using Skinbased ski waxes or mountainFLOW’s Quick Waxes to improve glide and repair scratches.
Is an extra tip available for Skinbased skis or can the current ski’s tip be modified?
No. Over the years we have tested a wide variety of ski tips and have found the design used in the current Skinbased collection to be the best for skis of this type. The materials and design of all Skinbased skis allow for the skis to slide and lift, even in deep, heavy, difficult, or variable snow conditions. Skinbased skis must not be bent or modified in any way, and must not be heated or stored in the vicinity of heat sources.
QUESTIONS RELATED TO THE EA BINDING
Can I install an EA Universal Binding on forest skis/backcountry skis/telemark skis/etc?
Yes, you can! Always check the installation instructions provided by the ski’s manufacturer regarding the binding mounting location. Also, always check to be sure you are using the appropriate length of screws for the binding installation. Before installation, read and review the binding installation instructions that come in the binding package. Take note of the width of the ski, and use the OAC Heel Guide on narrow skis, if necessary.
How tight should I adjust the EA Universal Binding flex plate and straps?
Leave a space of 0.5-1cm (1/3" to 1/2") between the toe of the shoe and the front of the binding. The stiffer the shoe, the looser the flex plate adjustment should be left. Also, on stiffer shoes, the adjustment straps should fit snugly, but not tight. If using a more flexible shoe, both the binding baseplate length and adjustment straps should fit slightly tighter.
How/When do I maintain my EA Binding?
We suggest that binding maintenance be performed regularly, and especially before any larger outing. Start by lifting the lever on the heel unit and sliding the heel unit off from the flex plate. Clean any debris from the heel unit with a damp cloth. Next, set the heel unit aside and clean the flex plate using the same process. Following this, return to the heel unit and, using silicone spray, lightly lubricate the spring of the heel unit. Be sure to wipe away any excess with a clean cloth. When finished, slide the heel unit back into its position and lock into place. Now you are ready to ski again.
A screw on my pre-installed binding does not go all the way in and/or the bottom plate of the binding is not flush to the ski. What do I do?
First, start by checking the length of the screw. Skinbased skis only accept 23 mm screws. Mounting holes in the ski are drilled by robot, ensuring that they are drilled in exactly the correct location and to the correct depth. At the factory, during the installation phase, screws are placed in all the ski’s screw holes. To finish tightening, use a PZ3 screwdriver. Installing the screw may require some force or pressure. If the hole in the ski does not seem to line up exactly with that in the binding flex plate, slightly loosen the rear screws and realign the flex plate.
Does the EA Universal Binding withstand freezing temperatures?
The material of the EA Universal Binding is designed to be freeze-resistant. The straps can withstand temperatures down to at least -20ºC. However, it is worth noting that in these colder temperatures the plastic of the straps becomes stiffer and more brittle. After use in these low temperatures, it is important to bring your skis and bindings into room temperature conditions and allow them to dethaw.
Snow and ice is accumulating in the binding length adjuster. How can I prevent this?
The sole of your footwear may be too stiff. In cases like this, with each step, there is a lot of movement in the spring mechanism. That abundance of movement makes it possible for snow to accumulate in between the spring and the binding. In some snow conditions, this sort of snow accumulation cannot be prevented. The use of silicone spray can help to minimize this problem, as well as to reduce or eliminate squeaking sounds caused by the binding.
QUESTIONS RELATED TO FOOTWEAR FOR EA BINDINGS AND SKINBASED SKIING
Can I use a skiing-specific boot with an EA Universal Binding?
No can do. Dedicated ski boots are often too rigid and the sole material too slick to be held in place properly by our EA Universal Binding.
Can I use mountain boots with my EA Universal Binding?
Probably not. Most mountain boots have a very rigid sole which allows them to be used efficiently with crampons. The EA Universal Binding contains a hinge under the toe/ball of the foot, and the shoe should freely bend at this point to prevent the binding from breaking.
What shoes do you recommend for Skinbased skiing?
Flexible-soled hiking boots, winter boots and other winter footwear, duck boots, Sorels, etc. The important thing is that the sole of the shoe should be flexible and bend naturally at the toes/ball of the foot. It is good to have torsional support, especially in the ankle when skiing more difficult terrain. Skiing on more gradual terrain is possible with less supportive footwear. The choice of footwear is always also up to the skier and his or her skills, balance, and ability.
Related blog article: Boots and Bindings: The tools that connect you to your Skinbased ski
QUESTIONS RELATED TO SKINBASED SKI MAINTENANCE
Can I use a waxing iron to wax skis/skins?
No. Do not use hot wax or an iron on your Skinbased skis or skins. The hot iron can damage the skin, its glue, and your skis’ Unicoat (UC) ski base. We recommend only liquid, cream, and paste waxes be used on our UC ski bases and skin material. The UC base and skin material are both very easy to maintain and do not often require waxing.
Should Skinbased skis be waxed before using?
No need. Skinbased skis are waxed at our factory and the bases and skins are ready-for-use straight from the packaging.
How do I maintain my Skinbased skis?
In order to maintain optimal performance, your Skinbased skis will require occasional care. There are two areas in particular that need special attention: the Unicoat base and the climbing skin.
If you notice a decrease in glide performance, apply the appropriate Skinbased quick wax. These waxes can be applied indoors or outdoors, and even during a short break in your ski day.
Note: under no circumstance should hot waxes and irons be used, as these can permanently damage the ski!
Similarly, after much use, you may find the climbing skin beginning to absorb water or having a buildup of ice. We recommend Skinbased Calming Skin Wax for treatment.
You can find even more maintenance tips on our blog: How to properly feed and care for your Skinbased skis.
Can the bottom and edges of the skis be grinded?
The bottom of the skis cannot be, but the edges can be. Use an edge sharpening file when necessary.