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They're Back

Postby Harald » Sun May 23, 2004 9:00 am

Hi folks, greetings everyone,

Let me express thanks to all the participants of the Europe Camp, what a great time!!!

Diana and I just returned from Europe last night. We had a great camp with new snow almost everyday. We saw the benefits of skiing PMTS, as most of the skiers on the glacier were having difficulty in these mixed conditions. Our groups and instructors powered through the snow and fog, not only handily dealing with the conditions but also making progress with our technique. Speaking for the coaches, this is one of the most fun camps, as the whole package works, the hotel, superb meals, coaching and ambiance. There is so much excitement by both participants and coaches that we have a tendency to over due the skiing (full power from nine to four) and the after hour socializing (full power entertaining and libation until the wee hours) but so what, it?s too much fun to leave anything in the tank.

The last week of our stay in Europe was also fun, interesting and informative; as we visited my colleagues at the University of Innsbruck, we were treated to the grand tour of the sport science facility and had another chance to use the Carvers. We also traveled to meet with the designers and product developers at Head ski boots in Montebulla, Italy. The researchers/professors at both the University of Innsbruck and Salzburg, working in the sport science department and biomechanics department, are very intrigued with the Harb carvers. The Harb Carvers offer great opportunities to do applied biomechanics studies for skiing.

I am invited by the team from the University of Salzburg and Innsbruck to present Harb Carvers, their function, design, performance, benefits and research to an applied biomechanics Sports Science Congress this summer in Ottawa, Canada. We will try to apply EMG results, measurements from comparisons to skiing and inline skating and testing at the presentation. All these fun projects and ideas keep coming up, but they always seem to require more time and work to develop fully. Anyway it sure looks like a busy summer ahead.

After I settle down for a few days and catch up with phone and e-mail I?ll respond to questions about carvers. But one of the immediate questions was about wheels; replacement wheels are available through Harb Ski Systems. A complete set comes to about the price of a regular lift ticket $50.00 for the pro model (not as much as a Vail ticket). We have tested all the wheels available from two different manufacturers. The Labeda wheels seem to perform well when we consider performance, durability and cost. The (OEM) wheels we put on the carvers, offer an excellent combination of grip, wear and cost. Labeda is making the compound and wheels we use on the Carvers especially for us (called the Hybrid). All the Harb Carvers built in this last batch have the new Hybrid wheel compound. Labeda developed it over the winter. We have tried bargain wheels but they are unsatisfactory for free skiing and slalom performance turns. You are free to try other combinations, but there are many inferior wheels on the market at close out prices and they are tempting. We tested some of these wheels. Most are too soft, soft wheels wear out fast (AFTER THREE RUNS) and hard compounds don?t grip as well. Some compounds don?t turn at all.

I?ll have more on Harb Carvers, their testing, their use and benefits coming up. We will be holding some Carver Courses this week in Colorado, contact me if you are interested. We are also having a Harb Carver Course in Lake Tahoe, California, June 5 & 6.

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