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THE BETTER ROCKETS by Greg Simmons


The Bremallow on the left and The Better Rockets on the right.


MISC SPECS:

Weight: n/a
Epoxy: QCM ECA-315 Hardener and QCM EHV-0050 Epoxy
Tipspacer: 4 layers (6 if you include the 2 full length layers) of 24oz tri-axial/matte fiberglass
Damping elements: rubber strips placed above metal edges
Inserts: Screw-in wood inserts (low quality, the price of the Rampa style inserts) pattern is for Salomon S9-14 bindings.

SKI BUILDER: Greg Simmons (forum member: Greg)

DATE MANUFACTURED: November, 2005

GRAPHICS

For these graphics, I was a little lazy, so I just went to town on them with a permanent pen after they were all finished

COMMENTS (By Greg)

After the many issues I ran into making the Bremallows, I decided to go back to the basics for my second pair of skis. I took the leftover AK Rocket ski I skied last year (the other one broke), and cut out bases using the ski as a pattern. As many of you have experienced, the bases warped. This created an A-symmetric side-cut. I would highly recommend using fiberglass for tipspacers. Fiberglass lays up really easily and doesn't relax at all when it comes out of the press. Additionally, because it is relaxed in its final state (as opposed to wood which is bent) it seems to be immune to delamination. For the inserts, I used some cheap screw in wood inserts. To say the least, I haven't been very impressed with the inserts. They seem to hold really well, but the metal is a pretty poor grade, and a couple of them broke apart while I was threading them into the skis. Next time I will either just mount the bindings straight to the skis or use something more like the Rampa inserts. After the first couple days of skiing, the topsheet on one of the skis started de-laminating a bit because I didn't get enough epoxy on it when I laid it up. I took the bindings off, repressed the topsheet, and haven't had a problem since. Also during these repairs, I coated the sidewalls with epoxy, and it seems to be holding up pretty well.

THE RIDE

Two days at Alpental in hardpack conditions and one day at Mt. Baker in extremely heavy powder snow. I was initially a little bit leery of the a-symmetric sidecut, but it actually skied really well so long as the tighter sidecut was on the outside edge. When the tighter cut was on the inside, the skis tended to cross their tips quite easily. They are stiff and powerful at speed, and I feel that they ski as well as if not better than the Salomon AK Rockets they were modeled after. The fiberglass tips seem really solid as well. The only problem I have had with them other than the topsheet issue, is that I took a huge fall on a really steep pitch and one of the skis slammed into a rock with its tail. The bare wood of the tail took some damage (imagine hammering on a piece of wood) but a little epoxy mostly put it back together. My next pair of skis uses fiberglass for both the tips and the tails and I think this should solve the problem.

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