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How much is not having to wax worth? New idea from DPS
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Updated 5 days ago
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marzNC - DCSki Supporter
one year ago

DPS is offering a new product via Kickstarter called Phantom that is called a Permanent Base Glide Treatment for skis and snowboards.  Regular price expected to be $100 to treat one pair of skis or one snowboard.  R&D took about a year.  Testing was done in New Zealand and South America during the summer of 2017.  DPS is targeting people who think their skis/boards only last about four years.

The Kickstarter campaign met the goal on Day 1 of a 30-day campaign.  Already over $50,000 from almost 500 people.  DPS did an eBlast to their eList and promoted on Facebook. 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dpsskis/phantom-permanent-base-glide-treatment-for-skis-an/description

Thoughts?  Useful?  Silly?

one year ago

I got the blast and checked out the kickstarter page and marketing info.  It’s advertised as penetrating throughout the base (ptex).  My question is does it withstand a base grind?  Could very well have an impact in rental market and those owners that ski just a few days a season.

one year ago

Discussion on PugSki said it’s deep in to the base and they actually recommend base grinds every 30 days to refresh the sheen.  Unless it’s really cold or really warm my only gain from wax is storage to prevent rusted edges and oxidation.  This won’t protect the edges.  Also not thinking a grind every 30 days isn’t for people who keep skis more than one or two seasons

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
one year ago

Haven’t listened to the podcast yet, but here’s the Blister Gear review.

http://blistergearreview.com/featured/dps-phantom-and-the-end-of-ski-wax

Turns out another product based on the same hydrophobic concept has been on the market in Europe for at least a season.  Look No Wax calls their product Juice.  Have decided to push the basic spray that retails for $20-25 instead of the “permanent” version that is around $100.

https://looknowax.com

The FAQs on the Phantom Kickstarter page are worth reading.  In one of the infographics, the target audience is people who keep their skis/boards for about 4 years.  Think about who’s been buying DPS skis for powder skiing and backcountry.  DPS only started moving into the northeast and Mid-Atlantic market a year or two ago.  Founded in 2005, based in SLC.

one year ago

I think I posted this last season, but I picked up a pair of DPS Wailer F99’s in March, and they are probably my favorite skis I’ve ever owned.  Ridiculously light and snappy.  Really amazing ski…

one year ago

crgildart wrote:

Discussion on PugSki said it’s deep in to the base and they actually recommend base grinds every 30 days to refresh the sheen.

I missed that.  Who would grind every 30 days?  Not seeing the ROI here, unless you’re a rental shop saving labor, material & capital expenses for daily waxing.  Maybe.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
one year ago

There were testers at Loveland in October.  Their impressions were reported in SKI Magazine.  They skied on “three pairs of DPS Cassiar F95 skis to test: one pair freshly waxed, one pair nude (both skis are wax-free), and a third pair with a special technology installed in the base, called Phantom… .”

https://www.skimag.com/gear/dps-phantom-test

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
one year ago

The DPS Phantom Kickstarter ended with backing from about 2000 people who pledged almost $300K.  Shipping is supposed to happen before mid-January.

Found out that DPS tried to work with the inventor of Juice.  That’s a product that’s been sold in Europe for about a year that is based on the same chemistry.  The inventor is a British engineer who is a ski instructor in Austria.  There were weaknesses in the product and DPS found it hard to move forward with any sort of partnership.  That’s why they turned to the Univ. of Utah professort.  Recently there was a Kickstarter started for Juice Infinity but the campaign was cancelled after only a week or so.

one year ago

Ski manufactureres will love this.  Base-grinding your skis every 30 days…how many grinds can you get out of a ski base until it’s useless?  Kills the used ski market and drives new ski sales up.

one year ago

Every 30 days of use. For me a typical season 30 days.  I can attest that 50% on the slope local to here need some sort of wax or base boost.  Many shops offer free wax service.  I do like to wax .my own.  

 

 

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
one year ago

Bonzski wrote:

Ski manufactureres will love this.  Base-grinding your skis every 30 days…how many grinds can you get out of a ski base until it’s useless?  Kills the used ski market and drives new ski sales up.

Base grinding is not required every 30 days.  Only suggested if someone wants their skis to look nice and shiny without doing a waxing.

Clearly DPS is not expecting a wholesale shift to Phantom.  But there is obviously a market and money to be made.  They did the Kickstarter partially because they wanted to get the word out to snowboarders as well as skiers.  I assume waxing a board taking longer than waxing a pair of skis.

one year ago

skiracerx wrote:

Every 30 days of use. For me a typical season 30 days.  I can attest that 50% on the slope local to here need some sort of wax or base boost.  Many shops offer free wax service.  I do like to wax .my own.  

Ok that makes better sense.  I wax my own too.

one year ago

marzNC wrote:

Bonzski wrote:

Ski manufactureres will love this.  Base-grinding your skis every 30 days…how many grinds can you get out of a ski base until it’s useless?  Kills the used ski market and drives new ski sales up.

Base grinding is not required every 30 days.  Only suggested if someone wants their skis to look nice and shiny without doing a waxing.

Clearly DPS is not expecting a wholesale shift to Phantom.  But there is obviously a market and money to be made.  They did the Kickstarter partially because they wanted to get the word out to snowboarders as well as skiers.  I assume waxing a board taking longer than waxing a pair of skis.

Not really, I found snowboards faster (when I did my kids) because it’s one surface vs two.

one year ago

Not really sure I’d call this a “new idea”.  Every generation of new base material since wood has been promoted amd marketed as “no longer need to wax” new technokogy from the first plastic, to p-tex to sintered, etc.. etc..

Every interation they turn around and sell wax to adopters anyway.  No doubt shortly after this DPS or someone else will be selling some kind of spray on refresher coating to enhance and prolong the glide performance.

 

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
11 months ago

For the latest about DPS Phantom, listen to the very end of the July 20 Blistergear interview with DPS Founder Stephan Drake.  Expect a media blitz about Phantom Version 2 starting in August.  Shorter curing time, faster glide, and UV boxes at DPS dealers for people who want a turn-key solution to avoiding waxing.  Have heard from a DPS rep that the curing time using a UV box means the process is complete in about an hour.

http://blistergearreview.com/featured/new-dps-skis-products-with-stephan-drake

 

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
11 months ago

I used my Head Absolut Joys in all sorts of snow conditions after treating them mid-Jan.  Included Massanutten, Wachusett with 4 inches of fresh snow, and late season skiing at Bachelor, Squaw, and Mammoth.  During the early May trip to Oregon and CA, I took along my Black Pearls (2011) with fresh warm wax.  Based on direct comparison on the same day, it was clear that bases treated with Phantom glide a lot more consistent than wax.  Since I plan to keep the BPs as rock skis, I’m probably going to use my second Kickstarter Phantom package on them.

Also plan to get Phantom Ver. 2 for other skis that my daughter and I will be using for a while.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
8 months ago

DPS Phantom is now available on new skis bought in person from Ski Essentials or for online purchases.  For a detailed introduction to what Phantom does and why many rec skiers/boarders may like it a lot better than dealing with waxing, check out the recent Chairlift Chat.  The guys in the shop had a chance to check out a new pair of DPS skis at Killington in October on assorted snow.  They had a very good time, much to their surprise I think.

http://www.skiessentials.com/Chairlift-Chat/DPS-Phantom-2-Wax-System-Explanation

Includes a pretty long video that shows the complete process that will be used by ski techs at shops that get the Cure Station specially designed by DPS to handle the 20 min UV cure time.  The cure process starts at 7:30.  If you just want to see the Cure Station in action, skip to 15:00.  The process was done by the DPS rep as training for the Ski Essentials techs.

The DPS website has added the capability to find deals that sell Phantom and/or have a Cure Station.  The Cure Stations are just starting to arrive so that list is incomplete as of early Nov 2018.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
8 months ago

There is a new video by Escape Route Alpine Demo Centre in Whistler on Facebook about Phantom.  It’s an interview with a local backcountry skier who used a pair of treated skis from March-June.  He liked it.  The shop is on the DPS map for dealers with Cure Stations.

The bigger news is that Aspen Ski Co liked what they demo’d last season.  All of the demo skis for 2018-19 from Four Mountain Sports (resort ski shop) will be treated with Phantom.  Probably means that there will be a Cure Station in all shop locations.

Ski Essentials, aka Pinnacle Sports in Stowe, is now listed on the DPS dealer map as having a Cure Station.

 

 

5 months ago

Powder Magaine has chimed in with a review of the product:

https://www.powder.com/stories/dps-phantom-glide/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=%WHATCOUNTS_TEMPLATE_NAME%&wc_mid=4036:15561&wc_rid=4036:2850383&_wcsid=FBF5910F93B993BA3FAD4C2B5A274FDA5630AA295AC5F75E

 

There’s more to the article, but here’s some of it:

“As for how Phantom works, it enters the ski base in a liquid phase [i.e. avoiding toxic fumes] and once it has been absorbed into the ski base, a light activates a chemical in the mixture resulting in polymerization of the compound. This polymerization leads to conversion of double bonds into stable single bonds. In layman terms, Phantom is chemically stable and non-reactive in the environment. Equally important, Phantom becomes part of the ski base—meaning it changes the chemical composition of your ski base and stays on no matter how many base grinds your skis pick up at the local shop. Also of note, you can wax your skis on top of Phantom to no detriment.

Permanently altering the ski base forever and maintaining a fast glide is what really intrigued me. I’ve tested Phantom several times at the ski resort, so I knew it works great for all conditions: cold powder, groomers, and melt-freeze cycles (even gliding well on warm mank that was mixed with some grit) …

.While I thought I would never wax these boards again, I’m fairly certain that the Phantom allowed me to push past the two-three week mark (backcountry) without having to wax, but from week three to four the buildup of skin glue inevitably occurred. For resort-based skiers, it’s highly likely you’ll never have to wax your skis again, but if you primarily backcountry ski you may still want to wax your skis once a month or so. The upside is I never had to use a scraper to knock off ice or chunks of accumulating snow from my ski bases while touring, which can be pretty annoying. ”

 

 

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
5 months ago

I’ve skied at least 20 days on my Head Absolut Joys after treating with Version 1 of Phantom in January 2018.  Mostly at Massanutten but also 10+ days in the northeast.  Skied a week in NH/ME in mid-Dec this season at Loon, Wildcat/Attitash, Bretton Woods, Sunday River (3 days), and Waterville Valley.

But the way my AJs performed in May 2018 at Bachelor and Mammoth on late season snow that was sticky some time between noon and 1pm is the reason that I’m even going to treat my 2011 Black Pearls that have become rock skis.  I had the BPs on that trip with traditional warm weather wax.  Had to use a paste wax at least twice a day (max 5 hours of skiing).

The advantage of Version 2 is that the UV exposure time is much less.  Plus DPS has been getting their Cure Station out this season.  Mostly in northern states that don’t have appropriate weather for DIY treatment from Nov-Mar.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
4 months ago

Skied 7 days in New England in the last couple weeks on my Phantom-treated Absolut Joys, 78 underfoot.  Did great in all conditions from hard pack groomers to a few inches of creamy new snow to soft snow with temps in the 40s.  Also skied a pair of all-mountain skis that I treated with Phantom 2.0 last fall in the soft chopped up snow after lunch (at Wachusett near Boston).  I had much more fun than if I’d had skis that hadn’t been waxed a day or two before.  Been there, done that in the past.  By the last couple runs, the temp was close to 50 and the groomers were more like ungroomed terrain.  I was willing to go faster because I had less worry of hitting a sticky section and coming to an abrupt stop.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
2 months ago

Had a good time with my Black Pearls (2011, 88mm) at Alta and Deer Valley in April on the days when temps were in the 40s or higher.  I treated them with Phantom 2.0 last fall.  These were the skis I used on the west coast in May 2018 at Bachelor and Mammoth using warm weather wax and paste wax once or twice during short ski days (8am-1pm).

Have about 25 days on the Absolut Joys (78mm) since treating them in Jan 2018.  Mostly used them in the northeast this season (Dec, Mar).

For an introduction to DPS as a company, check out Jim Kenney’s report about our April 2019 tour of the DPS Factory in SLC.  All adult-size DPS skis are being made there.

http://www.dcski.com/forum/97495

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
2 months ago

One of the testers who was invited to check out Phantom in Portillo during Summer 2018 writes for The Ski Journal.  He was very sceptical when he came across the Kickstarter in Fall 2017 but has decided Phantom works.

https://www.theskijournal.com/review/dps-phantom/

” …

I’m afraid I’ve buried the lede, so let’s cut to the chase—I was skeptical of Phantom, but after skiing on it in Portillo for a week and this entire winter in North Lake Tahoe in a variety of snow and temperatures, I can report this shit absolutely works. It’s effing incredible and I’ll likely be applying the glide goo to my entire quiver of skis. It’s that good. I want to note DPS did not pay me to write that and there was no guarantee, much to Alex’s dismay, that I would write anything about the press trip.

…”

Denis - DCSki Supporter
2 months ago

How does it do with skin glue?  Fluoridated rub-on treatments like Zardoz and X-wax will ruin the adhesion of skin glue.  If you use those treatments you must ski them off before applying skins, probably for multiple runs.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
2 months ago

Denis wrote:

How does it do with skin glue?  Fluoridated rub-on treatments like Zardoz and X-wax will ruin the adhesion of skin glue.  If you use those treatments you must ski them off before applying skins, probably for multiple runs.

From the articles I’ve seen, one reason interest in Phantom continues to grow worldwide is because backcountry skiers like it a lot.  Here’s an example of a review by someone who tested phantom with skins.

https://www.powder.com/stories/dps-phantom-glide/ - Jan 2019

Denis - DCSki Supporter
12 days ago

I got the phantom treatment a couple weeks ago for the skis I used on July 3 at Squaw Valley.  They skied very well until the snow got too wet.  Then they were no better and no worse than anything else I’ve experienced.  The slightest increase in wetness, or small ripples in the snow, or patches of brown snow would threaten to throw me over the handlebars.  The conditions were, bright sun, 45 degrees at 8 AM, 70 by 9:30.  I think that when it gets wet enough the suction of water laden snow on your bases will overpower anything.  I once read that a bar of bath soap is the best treatment for such conditions.  I opted instead for quitting and going to the bar.

marzNC - DCSki Supporter
5 days ago

Here’s a recent comment from a very experienced ski instructor in Australia.  He teaches alpine mostly, but also telemark.  Was sent a free sample to test by the DPS Rep for Australia.

https://www.ski.com.au/xf/threads/dps-phantom-the-perspective-of-someone-who-works-on-snow.85105/#post-3961733

I’ve finished my first week skiing on a pair of skis treated with Phantom. First up I haven’t noticed a loss of glide, but I have felt a variation in glide depending on the snow structure. The big variation in Phantoms performance has been between new cold snow with sharp crystals and old snow which is either wet or has a round structure.

My initial impressions were on warm, old, round snow which Phantom worked far above my expectaions. On new, cold, sharp snow Phantom was better than a univeral wax, but a fair way behind a temp specific hydrocarbon wax.

I’ve skied through a lot of dirty snow and I haven’t noticed a loss in glide yet.

I’m still rather impressed and I think the compromises will end up with a net benifit for most skiers.

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