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Following research and development lasting two-years, Madshus states that 3B’s HiPer-tex high performance fibre has allowed them to manufacture the lightest, strongest and fastest skis they have ever produced.
Fibreglass is not the only component in a ski however it does play a very critical role for the ski’s overall performance, a factor Norwegian-based Madshus was keen to enhance in its ski manufacturing.
Bjørn Ivar Austrem, R&D Manager at Madshus AS commented, “Flexing properties in cross country skis is crucial because of both compression on the topside and tension on the underside while skiing. Previous attempts to reduce fibreglass content and therefore the ski’s weight resulted in maintaining tension but with an undesirable adverse effect on compression due to inadequate interlaminar shear strength.”
Bjørn Ivar added, “3B had a full understanding of our need to meet demanding specifications and due to the unique properties of HiPer-tex, Madshus was finally able to reduce the fibre content by up to 15 percent without compromising tension on the underside of the ski. HiPer-tex glass fibre has brought great advantages in both strength and weight savings and by cutting the amount of fibre content Madshus has also been able to lower the matrix to wet out the epoxy compatible fibre, thereby contributing to weight reduction”.
3B say that HiPer-tex fibre provides unique properties such as high strength, high modulus and high elongation at break which combined offer the essential interlaminar shear strength that not only improves compression, it sustains and enhances tension on the underside of the ski. In addition, 3B’s recently developed epoxy specific sizing is fully compatible with Madshus’ manufacturing processes, which now allows improvements across the company’s whole range of advanced skis.
“The use of HiPer-tex fibre in the manufacturing process has allowed for a weight reduction of up to 10 percent, which is extremely significant for sports equipment, while at the same time creating stronger, lighter skis thus allowing Madshus to consolidate its leadership position in cross-country ski design and manufacture, ” said Eric Debondue, Business Development Leader at 3B. “In addition, HiPer-tex fibre glass is fully compatible with the existing manufactuing processes eliminating costly production investments at the ski factory.”
Austrem concludes: “High quality products demand high quality value-added components such as HiPer-tex which come at a cost, but which proves to be economical due to the reduced amount of fibre and epoxy resin required for its integration into our advanced skis for which consumer demand is constantly growing. But more importantly it allows us to design and manufacture superior quality equipment for the best skiiers in the world among them Paal Golberg, a rising star in the Norwegian national team who excelled and raced to a place on the podium at the recent Ski World Cup.”
Madshus is a technology driven Norwegian cross country ski manufacturer boasting the world’s oldest ski factory and through great innovations and a strong product line stays ahead of competition. 3B’s HiPer-tex fibre is also manufactured in Norway at the company’s plant in Birkeland, thereby contributing to Madshus’ “Made in Norway” skis.
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