Snowsports

Bern Watts helmet review

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

bern watts helmet

http://www.bernunlimited.com/2008/watts.html

So having signed and sealed my week in the alps this year, more specifically Tignes, it is time to purchase the essentials! Well the essentials I don’ already have!! This came down to two things, firstly a nice board bag to put my shiny Burton Custom in and secondly something that until this season I have gone without, a helmet. With a good friend out there doing a season I am hopeful of some off piste adventure, which means I am probably even more likely to take some comedy tumbles.

So what did I buy? Well I have just purchased and sent back the first helmet. I managed to pick up Bern Watts helmet, for under £60. Black shell, plaid liner, looked perfect. On arrival I had a few problems.

Firstly, and possibly a little vain, I found it far too big. Not the fit, which was incredibly snug, but the outer shell made my head look huge. With a couple of cm depth of polystyrene and a further 2cm of foam, plus the liner under the shell it stood a long way from where my head finished. Maybe that is more relevant for those of you with slightly petite heads/faces.

Secondly I found the liner restrictive, beautiful, but restrictive. Once I put on my jacket I found it and the hood were competing for space which made it difficult to turn my head with the freedom I really want cruising down the slopes.

Overall I would say Bern make some sweet looking gear and I have friends who are more than happy with their wares, but for me it just didn’t work. I guess the moral is try before you buy.

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d3o: Spyder US and Canadian Ski Suits

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

spyder d30 ski suithttp://www.d3olab.com/

d3o, a concept so simple yet so effective. Think back to that experiment we all did as kids, cornflour + water = complete amazement. When stirred gently it flowed around our fingers like water, yet when hit it became as solid as a rock. Richard Palmer, creator of d3o, has applied this same concept to a material that is now incorporated into all kinds of apparel and protective equipment.

The ski industry is littered with products with the d3o touch this season. Let’s start with the big guns, the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Spyder will be supplying the U.S. and Canadian ski teams with race suits, where regular padding has been replaced by d3o on the forearms, triceps and thighs. Working with Spyder, the d3o team were able to reduce the padding by 40% compared to previous d3o protection and consequentially improved the overall aerodynamics of the suit.

For those of you who prefer skiwear that leaves a little more to the imagination there are jackets and pants by Head and Schöffel, beanies by Ignite, impact shorts by Burton R.E.D. and gloves by Hestra.

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Latest in Winter Sports Tech

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

winter scene

http://gizmodo.com/5409541/the-future-of-snow-sports-tech

Here’s a list of the latest in winter sports gear for the upcoming 2010 season.

Some great skiiing and snowboarding products to feast your eyes on.

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Twin-edged skiis

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

twinski_1twin edged skiistwinski_7http://www.yankodesign.com.

These twin-edged skiis are a ace idea for extra grip but of course they have a lot of negatives aswell. Developed by designers at Yanko Design, these skiis are definately worth development.

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Burton Audio Stroll speaker Jacket

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

burtonroninaudiostrolljacket

http://www.burton.com.

Burton have developed a speaker system that is loud enough for your fellow skiiers to hear your cool tunes. Running on a 3AAA power pack, the speaker system in the hood can last around 10 hours. Snowmodo have written a review that goes something like this:

“The speaker system is loud enough to share music with those in close proximity on the slopes, or a couple of seats over on the lift. The 3AAA powered pack sits in a pocket and sends up wires to the little flatish egg like speakers on both sides of the hood. They seem very weather resistant, from the cloth covering to the small speaker holes. Battery life is 10 hours, but good news— when your battery pack dies, your ipod or whatever you’ve got plugged into the mini jack, will still be as loud as a set of headphones, without amplification. At this volume, only the people next to you will hear the sound, about the volume you get when you’re on the bus and a person’s headphones are cranked. This is a far better and simpler solution — things necessary on the mountain — than the old complicated ribbon cable and bluetooth motorola audex jackets which basically unplugged when you moved too much and ran out of batteries and died on you often.

The jacket itself is down filled, and waterproofed on the outside. It’s very very warm and better for slow movers on cold blue bird days where you don’t have any chance or worry about sweat building up. There are pit zips for cooling, of course, but down is hot, and this jacket is no exception. You’ll have to deal with the drafty pits and the heat build up on your core in certain places wearing this jacket, like with any down shell. The waterproofness and breath factors are rated at 10,000mm 5000g, which is mid high on waterproofing, using Burton’s 3 layer dryride shell but the breathability, as I said above, is not as great as you’d get on a unlined shell. There’s a zip and snap jacket to pant interface to avoid snow wedgies on pow days. I love riding in storms, when the tourists go home and the overpriced waterproof outdoor jackets I have are tested, so this one isn’t breathable enough for me. It also makes me look even more like a teddy bear than I do naked. But if you need to stay warm and listen to tunes on the mountain, there are very few jackets that do audio so well.”

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