Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Gear West Ski Flex Tester

Over the past year we have been designing and building the world’s foremost Nordic ski flex tester. Over $20k in hardware and lots of man-hours have been directed to the project and the final software solution. The technical team includes Gear West employees and former engineers, Matt Liebsch and Geroge Mehr along with our friends at Segla LLC, George Stickler and Jim Johnson. Our goal is to unlock the “black box” mystery of cross country ski flex analysis.


Other flex testers on the market use displacement, springs, force sensing resistors or camber length measurements to get an approximation of flex. Gear West is using the most accurate and expensive solutions available… load cells. We are not approximating flex based on secondary parameters or using inaccurate FSRs (force sensing resistors) prone to saturation pressure. Our load cells are accurate within 4 hundredths of a kilogram. This allows our flex tester to discern the slightest variations in flex. Our plan…


1. Analyze ski flex on any and all race skis
2. Map how the skis flex profile changes over the lifetime of a ski
3. Evaluate how well pairs of skis are matched


Now don’t get us wrong, we still have over 30 years experience picking skis by hand feel and flex board testing. Our newest tool will allow you, the customer, to see exactly what we are seeing and feeling when we pick your skis. That said, there are still some variables to ski speed that are very difficult to measure… namely base material variability and dynamic impulse flex response. But rest assured: Gear West has the wisdom, experience and largest selection of skis in North America to find your next favorite pair of Nordic skis!

1 comment:

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