- Jun 27, 2015
- capital district NY
Yes had Airglas skis too, they were great.Hmmm. Now that is ironic. I came in for a break working outside, at -32, here at BARTER ISLAND , ALASKA and opened up homebuiltairplanes.com to enjoy my coffee with.
AIRGLAS has been making both carbon and fiberglass skis for airplanes and military helicopters, up here for 30+ years. They bond the UHMW to the bottom of their composite skis.
F ATLEE DODGE has been making carbon skis for Supercubs for at least 15 years. I have been torturing a set for a long time on my trapline and out wolf hunting at temps past -50.
CARBON CONCEPTS makes a huge number of non certified carbon parts: skis, belly pods, flaps etc.
Aluminum skis work, but without a 3/8 thick UHMW bottom skin they will stick to the snow. A friend tried to ferry his airplane to another strip to put on new bottoms. I took off in 100 feet. After 1000 feet he shut it down and gave up. If you leave metal skis overnight on the snow they will have a dense coat of course ice crystals on the bottom. The same result, as above, will be made even worse.
For bush operations engineering calculations are helpful as a minimal spec., but durability is what rules the design. Any component that can't take a medium, several minute pounding with a 2 pound deadblow hammer, at -20 is not going to last long. That's what is happening on each crusty, broken ice chunk, take off. The floor protector on the battered Cessna 207 flying in and out of here is 3/4 plywood !
I taxi through brush, as thick than your thumb, all of the time, and my Atlee skis keep on truckin'.