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Key technical decisions
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Mounting Instructions
Instructions for use

BLACK POWDER
Carbon fiber skis by AlpControl

You've always dreamt of an efficient, reliable and ultra-light ski for touring?

To achieve that dream, AlpControl signed a contract with an expert in the industry to develop a revolutionary ski.
Ski BLACKPOWDER

The concept

Until now, the standards for mounting bindings required a thickness in the center of the skithat ruled out the optimal use of high performance carbon fiber, because:
  • if you use a significant amount of carbon the ski is too rigid.
  • if you use a thin layer suitable for a normal stiffness the ski is too fragile.
This explains the bad reputation of carbon fiber skis.

AlpControl decided to produce a new standard in carbon skis which use thicker carbon layers over a thinner wooden core.Even then, the use of high performance carbon fiber is limited by the interlaminar shear-strength of the resins.

The research and development of the MOUNTAIN SPRING allowed AlpControl to develop a patented "partial core"that solves all of these problems.

But to have the lightest and most reliable structure wasn't enough.Once on the snow, we also wanted to have the most efficient ski.

Then came our shaper, former Director of the racing department and of the R&D at the world leader ski manufacturer.

He agreed to bring his expertise at the highest level of the alpine skiing competition,to meet the specific needs of ski mountaineering.

The BLACK POWDER program

To establish our ski's specifications, we began with the notion that a mountain skier is often confrontedwith all possible snow conditions:
  • Powder close to the summit,
  • Hard snow in places exposed to the wind,
  • Crusty snow a little lower
  • Spring snow at mid-height,
  • Slush at the bottom,
  • It's not uncommon to end up slaloming between the trees, or skiing on roads and groomed slopes, where the skier can cut loose and carve,
  • On top of all this, a cross-country ski needs to be solid ? it's a question of security,
  • And finally, at the same time, the skis need to be light. 80% of a skier's time is spent climbing, with his skis either on his feet or on his backpack.

We believe that a touring ski should perform in all situations.

The BLACK POWDER... in sum

We propose two shapes "carve" and "wide".

Our shape "carve", highly parabolic, is incredibly versatile, efficient, maneuverable and ludic.In fact it's designed like an alpin ski, but with a high, wide and flexible shovel than gives a good flotation in powder.

Our shape "wide" has a wide waist. It's designed for freeride, high speeds and large turns. It doesn't care about difficult snows.

Il the 2 cases, the partial core (patented) structure allows an original allocation of flex along the ski,stiffer in the center while remaining more flexible in its 2 ends:
  • The stiffness in center provides a very high level of performance on hard snow.In all terrains this helps to distribute the weight of the skier along the ski:the waist does not sink so that the bearing surface is used to the maximum of its possibilities.
  • Flexibility in the ends gives an easy and versatile ski with a remarkable ability to slip safely on hard snow.
Last but not least the BlackPowder is so light that the energy saved on the way up leaves you the strength to enjoy the descent.

The result is a dream ski, efficient and pleasant from the beginning to the end of the trip!
Shape

163 carve
BlackPowder 163 BlackPowder 163

170 wide
BlackPowder 170 BlackPowder 170

175 carve
BlackPowder 175 BlackPowder 175

182 wide
BlackPowder 182 BlackPowder 182
Shovel
Waist
Tail
Radius
Weight
 
112 mm
70 mm
100 mm
15 m
  895 g
(1.97 lb)
121 mm
88 mm
108 mm
20 m
1060 g
(2.33 lb)
121 mm
78 mm
108 mm
16 m
1055 g
(2.32 lb)
125 mm
85 mm
112 mm
20 m
1090 g
(2.40 lb)
Each size comes in 3 rigidities
  • F : Flexible
  • R : Rigid
  • RR: Very rigid
The weight is the one of the R version.

Key technical decisions

The BLACK POWDER is a ski with a "partial core" (AlpControl patent) which is shorter than the ski, so thatthe upper and lower layers of carbon sandwich come together to form carbon/epoxy composite monoblocs at the tail and shovel.

We selected the strongest fiber among "high tensile" ones: the Toray T700S.

Carbon fibre tensile strength (MPa)

The T700S is one of the rare fibers in the world with a rate of elongation before break well above 2%,ensuring a high tolerance to shock.

We developed specifically for the BLACK POWDER a triaxial weaving which is not a superposition of 3 unidirectional layers,but a real "knitting" of carbon fiber with no risk of delamination between layers.

With between 2000 and 3000 g/m² of carbon depending on the part of the ski, the BLACK POWDER is not a ski "with carbon",it is "full carbon" with the best possible fiber for a ski.

The core is a blend of 3 different species of wood, which remains the best for damping vibrations without adding weight.

Aesthetics

The wood core is apparent on the side, visible as a thin edge of treated noble wood between two thick layers of carbon fiber,giving the ski at once a retro and modern look.

Besides being incredibly efficient, the triaxial fabric also allows an attractive "carbon" finish without addingthe weight of a separate coating.

Moreover, in case of scratches, the ski can easily be reconditioned by a simple glazing with epoxy resin.

Sustainable development / Eco-design

A ski is hardly recyclable, therefore the most environmentally friendly ski is a durable ski.

The carbon fiber, the triaxial fabric, the epoxy resin, the wood core, the ski's tolerance to shock and easy-to-repair structure,the thick and ultra-resistant sole... every aspect of the BLACK POWDER was chosen for reliability and durability.

The ski's exceptionally light weight is obtained despite its thick edges (2 mm), which allow for a large number of grindings.Thus over the years, a pair of BLACKPOWDER 163-F can drop gradually from 1790 to 1590 grams without losing its dynamic qualities.

Optional, we propose an additional warranty 5-10 years.

Might the BLACK POWDER be the best investment of your skiing life?

Mounting instructions

Measure the thickness of the ski towards the drillings.
  • If the ski is more than 11.2 mm thick: drill directly Ø3.8 mm depth 9 mm.
  • If the ski is between 10.2 and 11.2 mm thick: first drill depth 7.5 mm then change the drill and drill again Ø3.8 mm depth 9 mm.
  • If the ski is less than 10.2 mm thick: drill Ø3.8 mm depth 7.5 mm and use short screws. If necesary the screws delivered with the binding should be shorten (for example with grindstone) to make them enter 7 mm maxi into the ski.
In every case FILL the holes with some EPOXY glue while stirring with a nail to expel air bubbles. Screw without forcing. Follow the instructions for use of the EPOXY glue (time of use after mixture, temperature, curing time).
Mounting with EPOXY glue


Recommended position of the center of the boot ( L ) for a versatile use

Position of the center of the boot


Boot size
(UK/MONDO/EU)

  4 / 23 / 36.8
  5 / 24 / 38.1
  6 / 25 / 39.3
  7 / 26 / 40.6
  8 / 27 / 41.9
  9 / 28 / 43.1
10 / 29 / 44.4
11 / 30 / 45.7

BlackPowder
163

717 mm
716 mm
714 mm
713 mm
711 mm
710 mm
708 mm
707 mm

BlackPowder
170

751 mm
750 mm
748 mm
747 mm
745 mm
744 mm
742 mm
741 mm

BlackPowder
175

775 mm
774 mm
772 mm
771 mm
769 mm
768 mm
766 mm
765 mm

BlackPowder
182

808 mm
807 mm
805 mm
804 mm
802 mm
801 mm
799 mm
798 mm
  • For use 100% on slopes: to increase L by 15 mm can improve the behavior on hard snow. In that case choose bindings that transmit well the torsional stress with the rear unit (Marker bindings or alpin ski bindings).

  • For use 100% touring: to decrease L by 15 mm can facilitate kick turns and the flotation in deep snow without damaging too much the behavior on hard snow.
Marker bindings: For optimal strength, normally only the threaded part of the screw must enter in the ski, but on Marker bindings,the screw head tends to cross the line: we strongly recommend to add conical washers to avoid this problem.



Instructions for use

After each day:
  • If the skis have been in contact with road salt, rinse them with fresh water.
  • Dry the skis and store them in a dry place, away from UV and heat sources.
To keep a good grip on hard snow, we recommend:
  • Lateral grindings slight but frequent, rather by hand.
  • Bottom grindings with machine at the same time as the sole.
During the summer season:
  • Store the skis with waxed soles.
If the ski is scratched on the wood side or in case of carbon splinters :
  • Use fine sandpaper (grain = 150) to sand the wood side and if necessary to sand slightly the upper edges of the skis.
  • Then use a brush to put a coat of navy quality varnish on the wood side and if necessary on the upper edges.
If a binding moves :
  • Remove the screws, dry the holes, FILL the holes with some EPOXY glue while stirring with a nail to expel air bubbles, tighten the screws without forcing.
Except in extreme skiing - where you are not supposed to fall - don't ski downhill with a LowTec binding locked.If a binding is torn away, never re-drill or add inserts: please ask AlpControl.

Never re-drill a ski (eg to move a binding) without the agreement of AlpControl.

Don't bang the ski tail against rock or ice (skis should be planted in the snow without run-up),do not force flexion of the ski with all the strength upon the tail (eg in store).