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  • How is your skin glue holding up?

    As the chief reviewer on this site, a default position, I'm keenly aware of the limits of how much one person can account for different conditions with regard to snow, temperature, and storage techniques. With that in mind, it makes more sense to try and compile a database of various people's experiences with their climbing skins. Consider this a crude way to begin that.

    Tell us about the climbing skins for your quiver of skis.
    • What brand are they?
    • What is the composition of the plush? Nylon, Mohair, or a blend? If a blend, what's the ratio of Mohair to Nylon (typically 70/30)?
    • Most importantly, tell us about the glue. How is the glue holding up? Is it too sticky, or not sticky enough? When did it start to change (how many days/years of use)?
    • How old are the skins?
    • How wide are the skins at the waist?
    • What region do you tour in most of the time (Rockies, Sierra, Cascades, Wasatch, Green, Presidential)?


    Over time this thread will, hopefully, be a good resource for what brands work best in what places.

    ain't no turn like tele!

  • #2
    Brilliant idea, Craig! I have baskets full of skins but I'll just comment on the two newest that are the ones that I use right now.

    __________________________________________________

    What brand are they? Black Diamond Glidelite Mix STS

    What is the composition of the plush? 65/35

    How is the glue holding up? These have a good batch of glue. No problems sticking but not too hard to pull apart.

    How old? They are pretty new... <10 days. I fold all my skins in half and store them glue to glue.

    How wide are the skins at the waist? 100mm

    What region do you tour in most of the time? Colorado Rockies -- Front Range all seasons

    __________________________________________________

    What brand are they? Black Diamond Ascension Nylon STS

    What is the composition of the plush? Nylon

    How is the glue holding up? The glue is tenacious and I have to stand on the tail and use my leg strength to separate them. I do iron the glue with release paper at the beginning of each season to smooth it out and get rid of some gumminess. They are indestructible. Previous versions of this skin have had glue that was too gummy and needed to be replaced.

    How old? These skins are well used with at least a hundred days. They show no visible damage and have never been reglued.

    How wide are the skins at the waist? 118mm

    What region do you tour in most of the time? Colorado Rockies -- Front Range all seasons
    __________________________________________________
    Last edited by cesare; 5 March 2014, 11:37 AM.

    Comment


    • #3
      Black Diamond STS nylon, for 5 pr of skis. I'm not that much of a weight weenie, and I like the durability of the STS Nylon.

      The glue has been pretty uniformly good. I've refreshed the older ones, which are like 6 seasons old. By refresh, I sometimes iron them with parchment, or touch up/re-do them with fresh Gold Label. The glue loses stickiness over time, but no more than I would expect, especially given some rough use. I keep up on the maintenance, and store them in a fairly cool corner of the gear closet. I try to keep the needles, dirt, and dog hair out...but you know how it goes.

      The skins go on skis from 94 at the waist up to 115. I buy the size closest to the tail width.

      I do most of my touring in the Rockies.
      backcountry in northern New Mexico

      Comment


      • #4
        Agreed, good idea. I stole cesare's template and modified his answers.

        __________________________________________________

        What brand are they? Black Diamond Glidelite Mix STS

        What is the composition of the plush? 65/35 (I'm guessing, using cesare's numbers)

        How is the glue holding up? Seem to be a good batch of glue. No problems sticking but not too hard to pull apart.

        How old? ~4 years old, but with a 3 year old kid, they haven't seen tons of use, maybe 25-30 days. like ces, I fold all my skins in half and store them glue to glue.

        How wide are the skins at the waist? 110mm

        What region do you tour in most of the time? Colorado Rockies -- Front Range all seasons

        __________________________________________________

        What brand are they? Black Diamond Ascension Nylon Clipfix (just put an STS tail on them); these are factory seconds with the purple plush, that I bought used (came with the skis)

        What is the composition of the plush? Nylon

        How is the glue holding up? The glue eventually became gummy and extra sticky. Stripped and reglued them with cesare's help in the cesare man cave. New glue seems to be doing fine, after maybe 3 or 4 years but very little use (<10 days maybe)

        How old? These skins are well used, no idea how many days on them. I've owned them for close to 10 years now, and I'm the second owner. Skins seem to be in good shape, other than needing to be reglued.

        How wide are the skins at the waist? 95mm

        What region do you tour in most of the time? Colorado Rockies -- Front Range all seasons

        Comment


        • #5
          I will add that for my next pair of skins, I'm super interested in the glueless options out there.

          Comment


          • #6
            I have a full collection of skins in different generations but all the same brand and model. I only use BD Nylon STS skins. Out of all of them the best ones I have had were the Tractor model in a lighter fabric. These skis have been on 3-4 pair of skis, used as loners and the grip and skin glue has held up after years of service. The glue is not overly tacky either. These skins are still being used and going strong. OK, I had trouble with the last generation purple/first generation orange glue as it started to glop out in less than a year. Still use these a little and they always need a iron refresh often. I have a pair of 2012 last generation full orange and they are pretty good, a little tacky but doable. OK, lastly I have two pair of the latest generation 2013 skins with the patterned bottoms. The glue on these is overly tacky and grabby more so than any other skin I have owned. So much so that I usually remove skis to remove skins as If is warm out I can't pull them off. Last time out I stored the skins in the freezer and it was better. They don't leave residue tho. Hopefully, they loosen up with age. All my skins are grippy climbing and Wall to wall. I like to keep a strong barrier of wax on my BC skis to help removal of skins at maybe the expense of some sort of downhill performance. I have not noticed much of a problem in this regard.

            I always dry my skins out after every use and store them in my pump room where there is a cement floor and cool year round. Store with skin savers on.

            Edit to add:
            Tahoe Region
            skis 70-115
            use 96 and 115 most
            Lynn uses 95 and 105 most
            skin around 2-3xwk
            Last edited by Quadzilla; 5 March 2014, 12:15 PM.
            "Just say no to groomed snow"

            Comment


            • #7
              I'm running four different pairs of skins right now. For yo-yo'ing I'm on a pair of BD Pure Mohairs that are 105 at the waist. I store them glue to glue folded in half and don't use the cheater sheets. The glue on these is holding up well. It isn't as tacky as on older purple BD Ascensions but it's plenty to stay on. I also run the standard BD hardware on these which holds up well even if some snow gets between the ski and skin.

              For rando race-type events I use a pair of Pomoca mohairs at 65 under foot. The glue is considerably less tacky, but manages to stay stuck as long as the ski is clean when they are applied. I only use a tip loop on these skis counting on the glue to keep them on. For back-up race skins I have an old pair of the purple BD Ascensions, all nylon, about the same size maybe 60 under foot with great hardware just in case. These were reglued last season with BD Gold. They aren't as sticky as the original glue that came with them 15 years ago, but about the same as the euro skins after the reglue.

              My back-up yo-yo skins are older 100% nylon Ascensions too. They've been through the ringer as I cut them in half a couple of seasons ago to make split skins for a big ski and then duct taped them back together this season. Original glue is still tacky. They're about 100 underfoot and the duct tape takes up the middle 25 mm or so. They still stick okay even with the missing glue section. Once again bomber old BD hardware for just in case. No reglue, this is the OG glue from about 2003 and still going strong.

              Most of this gear was used in the Colorado Rockies until this season when I moved to the Cascades. Two biggest factors for me with glue are not getting them wet by putting them on with ice or snow on the bases, waxing the plush a little from time to time, and also running good fitting and strong hardware in case of some failure.

              Comment


              • #8
                Ascension Nylon STS Skins

                Wall to Wall

                My current pair has seen two sets of BD Drifts and have over 300 days. Seems I've used Ascensions forever.

                The glue with these is better than the old glue. When it gets wet you can wipe it dry and it works fine. I've done one touch up on the tips, tails and the mid skin edges. Look ugly but they stick fine and best, they peel off the skis nicely. They still stick to the snow for the uphill and steeper angles when needed,so durability does not seem to be an issue as they still retain their plush. I just hang them on my gear rack to dry saving freezer space for fish. During the off season I throw them in a nylon bag and cram them in a gear box.

                When it's really cold, pulling them apart for the next lap is tough, but worth it

                Showing some skin. Note the lack of dog hair.

                Click image for larger version

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                • #9
                  Bought the Black Diamond STS 2 months ago. The skins have the Black Diamond logo on the plush.
                  Also came in the zippered storage bag, WHICH I HATE, AND REPLACED WITH AN ORANGE STUFF SACK. TAKE NOTE BLACK DIAMOND!

                  Have at least 25 days on them, Montana, Northern Rockies

                  100% Nylon

                  Width 125mm

                  Glue is too sticky, there is also extra glue that is balled up on the edges of the skins, it was there when skins were brand new. I'm anal about keeping my skins clean and can put 100's of days on them without having to re-glue, these will be hard to keep the glue clean, on day 1, while trying to pull skins apart, I got fuzz from climbing gloves on the glue.

                  I have at least 6 pairs of BD ascensions all 100% nylon. These are by far the stickiest.

                  I use 100% to avoid icing up problems, they still do on warm or sunny days. I would pay almost anything for skins that wouldn't.

                  This is the first pair that I didn't replace the BD tail hook for a G3. Do not like having parts that can fall off. Now I have lots of extra parts so I carry one tail piece lever.

                  This is also the first pair using the tip loop that clamps the skin and screws together, seems OK so far.

                  I have noticed a couple of dings in the plush from hitting a rock or log while climbing. Has the plush been changed? None of my older skins show damage from climbing in the same locations.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by CrazyMtnSkier View Post

                    I use 100% to avoid icing up problems, they still do on warm or sunny days. I would pay almost anything for skins that wouldn't.
                    Are you using anything to waterproof the plush? I had not been, but started recently do to advice on this forum. I've been pleasantly surprised by how much it helps.

                    Check this out:

                    http://www.backcountrytalk.earnyourt...ighlight=skins

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by CrazyMtnSkier View Post
                      Bought the Black Diamond STS 2 months ago. The skins have the Black Diamond logo on the plush.
                      ...
                      Glue is too sticky, there is also extra glue that is balled up on the edges of the skins, it was there when skins were brand new.
                      Based on your comment here, and one I overheard from another acquaintance it sounds like BD changed their glue back to their overly sticky formula. The pair I've been evaluating for about a year now has a very manageable glue, but it seems like the skin I use the most in comparisons is losing its tackiness. It still works, but certainly doesn't inspire confidence when I apply the skin to a ski.

                      Doesn't anyone use anything other than Ascension or GlideLite here?

                      ain't no turn like tele!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dostie View Post
                        Doesn't anyone use anything other than Ascension or GlideLite here?
                        I was thinking the same thing. Proves the carry over from Ttips. That was the gospel for quite some time... you won't be able to climb the steepest skin tracks w/out wall to wall nylon.

                        With all the Climbing Skins Direct support I'm surprised we haven't seen a review. Maybe they're coming.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Dostie View Post
                          Doesn't anyone use anything other than Ascension or GlideLite here?

                          Happy G3 user here... 3rd pair. Used all kinds of other makes as well over the last 30 years and frankly, I've never had a problem with any of them.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by NoPin View Post
                            Happy G3 user here... 3rd pair. Used all kinds of other makes as well over the last 30 years and frankly, I've never had a problem with any of them.
                            Glue details? Or are such details too demanding?

                            ain't no turn like tele!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              This might be old news to some, but a buddy told me about a method to renew the glue on my skins, I found it pretty quick and painless, it made a huge difference in an old 7 year pair of skins (The ones with the tire tread pattern on the bottom).

                              Take a heat gun and heat up maybe a 6 inch section of one side of the skin, plush side down. If there is any debris in the skin it’s easy to pluck it out now with a utility knife at this point, reheat if you spent some time taking out stuff, then take an old credit card and smooth out the glue, Seems heating it up will remove any trapped moisture, it also seemed to move the old wax that my skins had picked up over the years to the top and it was transferred to the credit card while smoothing, clean the old wax off the card, and repeat on the next section of skin.

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