Technologies

CAMBER 3P

The 3-point contact camber maximizes the ski's handling and stored energy without compromising its agility. Rather than pressure being evenly distributed along the entire length of the ski edge during a turn, three distinct high pressure zones are created. This blog will first describe what the 3P camber is physically and then the benefits and function of this technology will be detailed.

What is the camber 3P?

The camber in three points (3P) is the camber exclusive of the Pionnier 104 and the Explo 96. This camber has a particular shape that separates it from the camber of other skis. Indeed, when pressed flat, the camber 3P creates 3 narrow contact zones. In other words, the zone between the toes and the beginning of the front rocker is slightly elevated, and the same goes for the zone between the heel and the beginning of the rear rocker.

The camber 3P of Pionnier 104 and the Explo 96 is designed to maximize the pressure in these 3 contact zones while minimizing the contact length. Using our tools and Sooth Ski, we can accurately predict the deformation of the skis when they are edged. The true deformation of the Pionnier 104 (172cm) is compared to that of a ski from another brand. For the Pionnier 104 in blue, we see that when the center of the boot touches the ground, the ski is not in contact with the ground immediately before and after the foot. For the ski in orange, it is the entire ski that comes into contact with the ground which creates a uniform pressure.

The most observant among you may have already observed this phenomenon on other skis. Indeed, some skis with a lot of camber can also have this behavior. However, other skis do not do it as pronounced as the Pionnier 104 or the Explo 96. For this reason, our off-piste skis offer a unique on-snow behavior that provides great energy return out of turns while remaining agile and playful.

What is the purpose of the camber 3P?

After all these explanations, it is still legitimate to ask what is the purpose of the camber 3P. This technology reduces the pressure in the tips of the ski at low edge angles. Less pressure in the tips of the ski translates into more ease of turning the ski. This behavior is often referred to as "playful" or "agile". This is what makes the Pionnier and the Explo the perfect skis for negotiating tight turns between the trees in your favorite glades. However, when the ski is edged at a steeper angle, in a short radius carving situation for example, the camber 3P behaves like a normal camber and transfers more pressure into the tips of the ski. This allows the ski to maintain a good grip while allowing for a quick return of energy. The result? Exciting and versatile skis that will allow you to make the most of your season!

STIFFNESS DISTRIBUTION

When the time comes to change your old skis for a new pair, it is often a challenge for some to choose the right model. It is possible to attend a demo day to try out different models, but not all skiers have that kind of time and often not all models are available. The solution is to rely on the information provided by the various manufacturers. However, everyone has their own way of presenting their skis, so it is not easy to find your way around.

We have put at your disposal the rigidity distributions of our skis. A numerical and objective way to inform you about this mysterious but very important property of skis: stiffness. More transparency, more information, but also more questions.

This ski has 100mm at the base, 20m radius and 180cm length. This seems to correspond to my needs, but is it rigid or flexible? "This model has a flex of 8/10." But what does that mean?

What is the stiffness distribution of a ski?

The stiffness distribution is the graph of the bending or torsion stiffness at any point on a ski.
Here are some definitions to make it clearer.


Deformed: The shape of a ski when a load is applied (force or torque). It's a measure of how much the ski arcs.

Distribution: Variation of Y (in this case, the stiffness) according to the position X (distance from the center of the ski).

The bending stiffness

How difficult is it to bend a ski
Symbol: EI, measured in Nm².

The torsional stiffness

How difficult it is to twist a ski
Symbol: GJ, measured in Nm²

Why are we interested in the stiffness distribution?

The stiffness of a ski will greatly affect its behavior on snow. Indeed, the more rigid a ski is in bending, the more stable it will be at high speed. The torsional stiffness is also important. The more rigid a ski is in torsion, the better the edge hold. However, a softer ski will be easier to skid and easier to turn. For this reason, the stiffness of skis will vary depending on the use we will make of them.

In addition, the behavior of the ski can also vary according to the local stiffness of the ski. Let's imagine 2 skis with equal average stiffness in bending. If we only consider the average stiffness, we could think that the skis would have the same behavior on snow in terms of bending stiffness. However, one ski could be softer in the back and the other in the front. They will not necessarily have the same behavior. This is why the stiffness distribution is important and it is not necessarily sufficient to look at the average stiffness.

How is the stiffness distribution measured?

To measure the bending stiffness distribution of a ski, a known force is applied to the ski and the deformation of the ski at all points is measured. To measure the torsional stiffness distribution of a ski, a known torque is applied to the ski and the torsional deformation angle of the ski is measured at all points. A research group from the University of Sherbrooke supervised by Alexis Lussier-Desbiens has developed a machine that can measure these 2 parameters as well as the geometry and the camber of the ski in less than 2 minutes. Now used by Sooth Ski, this technology is the one used by Ferreol to measure the mechanical properties of its skis.

Case study: The Explo 96

Our design process reduces the number of prototypes needed to arrive at the final design. After designing the geometry of a new prototype and making a first mock-up scaled model, we choose the different materials and their configuration to obtain the desired bending and torsional stiffness. Finally, we build a first prototype in our Beaupré facility to test it on the slopes of Mont-Sainte-Anne. Snow testing is the last step in the design cycle. It is at this stage that we must put aside the engineering and rely on the experience and evaluation of our testers. If the ski behaves as expected, the design is complete. If not, adjustments will be necessary.

In the case of the EXPLO 96, our testers indicated that the ski was agile and easy to control, but that it would benefit from being more charger and stable in moguls or in variable terrain. Our designers decided to increase the front stiffness (tip) of the ski to address this issue.

The figure below shows the stiffness distributions of one of the first prototypes of the Explo 96 (orange) and the final version (blue).

Increasing the front stiffness (tip) allows the skier to have a more aggressive stance (more weight forward) and increases the stability of the ski in bumps and variable terrain. However, keeping the tail a bit softer allows the skier to exit the turn at any time and initiate a skillful skid to quickly control speed and direction.

The result? A fierce and agile ski that will perform just as well in tight glades as on firm snow.

In short, if our designers had only looked at the average stiffness, it would have been impossible to do this analysis and optimize the behavior of the EXPLO 96. This is why measuring stiffness distributions is an important tool in our design process.

THE STIFFNESS DISTRIBUTION OF OUR SKIS

Pionnier 104

The Pionnier 104 has a higher than average bending stiffness (top curve). Paired with its camber pronounced, the Pionnier promises an energetic return on exiting a turn. In addition, its softer rear spatula absorbs the unexpected.

The balanced torsional rigidity of the Pionnier 104 ensures good edge hold while keeping the ski agile and versatile.

EXPLO 96

The Explo's materials were chosen to achieve a balance between weight and stiffness to make it a ski capable of standing out in all conditions found on the East coast. For its size, it has a high torsional stiffness that gives it a good grip in firm snow. Coupled with rockers, it makes it a very versatile ski.

ZIGZAG 92

The Zigzag offers a little more flexibility in the tips than the Explo, which allows for more control and agility for your tricks or side hits. In addition, its torsional stiffness is high underfoot, but moderate in the tips to allow you to get out of any situation. Still, thanks to its short radius, you'll be surprised at how much you can push this ski in your turns.