The Hybrid glue system from Contour solves the stickiest skin problem. That is designing a glue strong enough to adhere to the backing but not so strong that you can’t separate a skin from itself. Contour achieved this goal by using multiple layers of glue. An especially sticky formula rests against the skin which is covered in another layer of less tacky glue that keeps the interface manageable. The resulting Hybrid glue system is easy to use and reliable. It’s also easy to maintain, since you can simply wash the skin with detergent to refresh the stickiness. Attached to the fancy adhesives is a mix of fibers that also blend multiple goals: grip, glide, and durability. This is achieved with Contour’s signature mohair woven with some rugged nylon. The Hybrid Mix skins offer the benefits of newer glue formulas with the reliability of traditional fare.
- Hybrid glue technology offers good adhesion even in low temperatures.
- Glue is easy to pull apart and can be washed to refresh the tack.
- 65% mohair / 35% nylon blend is a good all-around fiber formula.
- Attached adjustable tail clips fit securely on just about any ski out there.
- A wire bail tip attachment keeps things simple and reliable.
- Two included cleaning wipes help refresh the adhesive side.
- Also includes a carry bag and a trimmer for customizing the side cut.
- Backing foil has a center strip for mess-free trimming.
* Please note the kits labeled Universal (without a length range) come without the tips attached so you can cut them to any length.
|Skin Size||Tip Bracket Width|
Update 2020/21: Contour changed out the tips to be sleek metal buckles that are permanently riveted on (previously they used Vario tip hardware with swappable buckles). They also changed to an offset-style cutter which doesn't require repositioning the skin between cuts like the previous letter opener.
|Weight per skin (with backing)||312g [115mm x 169-176]|
Questions & Reviews
Generally, we would expect hybrid glue to last a long time, potentially longer than normal glue due to the cleaning process which helps dealing with dirt and debris that can cause failure in normal glue. That said, no one has had enough experience with it yet (only the last few years) to have long-term data.
I'm unsure which size to buy for Völkl Rise Above 88 (130.6 - 88 - 111.4) at a length of 177 cm.
-) Size 169 - 176 cm should fit, but would it be better to choose 177 - 184 instead?
-) Width should be fine when choosing 115 mm instead of 135, isn't it?
I'd go with the 177-184, you can always cut them shorter if needed. The 115 will work fine, you'll want to size them to the widest part of the tail.
The glue is MUCH less sticky. I can now easily rip skins with my boot still in the skis at the top of the climb. I also don't torture myself when separating skins from inside my pack between laps.
The downside is that the skins do require a little TLC with proprietary wipes to keep the glue sticky, but even when not maintained regularly they still stick to my skis well enough.
The hardware included is the 85mm bracket with a typical Contour click-to-close system. With your ski in particular I'd be hesitant to suggest the 115mm width due to inadequate base coverage throughout the tails. Although more trimming would be required, I'd suggest going with the 135mm width. Thanks!
Straight skins have a lot of advantages over "wider-at-the-ends" skins, especially with lighter mohair mix skins. They curl back less thereby getting less snow under the front edge and they can be folded in from the ends to the middle which makes skin handling much easier. 115mm skins will still need to be trimmed about 5-7mm underfoot to fit the waist of my Chargers.
I would suggest going with the 135mm x 177-184cm. The next size down (169-177cm) would work as well however the tail attachment will be nearing the end of the strap, making it more difficult to rip skins from the tails. Thanks!
"Rock skies" are my term for the old ones which are horribly scratched and you continue to use them in early winter when there is not yet any old snow carpet pad or which you use in late spring jumping from last snow patch to last snow patch and descending a forest path which is more brown than white, while you reserve your new skies for the good conditions.
After 8 years of usage and I don't know 100 or 200 backcountry days, my glorious Movement skis are now rock skies. The sliding surfaces are somewhere between washboard and body file. One inch of steel edge of one ski has fully broken off.
Of course I would be purchasing the Hybrids for my new shiny skies with perfect sliding surfaces. I expect them to stick to this nice surface at 0°F and below, if I clean off dirt from time to time and keep an eye on dry conditions between adhesion layer and ski when applying the skins. But will they still work in 8 years when my currently shiny skies become the next rock skies? My current Colltex hot glue type skins are 8 years old as the skies are. They lost many hairs on the edges and I can't climb as steep anymore as I initially could, especially on hard, old snow. The glue side looks quite ugly, but they still stick to my rock skies and don't come off. "Transfer tape" - what is this?
So, will the Hybrids work under ugly conditions? 0°F or below, rock ski surface? Who has experience?
Thanks for writing in! I suppose it's difficult to say whether this skin will last that long since it hasn't been around for that amount of time! Regardless, with this unique glue and the ability to efficiently clean them, they should get the edge in terms of long-term durability and longevity. Personally, these are one of my favorite skins and a certain set is approaching the 150-day mark with little trouble. The cleaning solution not only cleans but also rejuvenates. They will work in sub-zero temps, regardless of the ski bases, but it is important to note they are more sensitive to the conditions in general when compared to those with traditional glue. At the end of the day, this just means you need to stay up on your skincare management i.e. keeping snow off the bases, storing skins in your jacket on the descent, hanging them to dry, etc. If done well you'll end up with a long-term easy-to-manage skin!
Transfer tape is simply used to efficiently reglue skins.
The 115mm would be too narrow throughout a majority of the ski and create issues regarding grip. I would suggest jumping up to the 135mm width. Thanks!
I've got 132-101-117 skis that are 185cm long. What's the best length for the skins ? 177-184 or 185-195?
Go with the longer option! That way, should they be too long, you can trim them to fit with a little effort.
And if Im looking for backcountry skiing with multiple runs per day - do I want the hybrid mix or the guide?
For your ski, you could get the 169-176 length as the tail strap will allow for additional length. Although the glue on the hybrid mix is not as resistant to the conditions presented during transitions as the guide mix, with proper skin care management such as keeping snow off the glue and storing them inside your jacket on the descents, they'll last all day. The guide mix does utilize a more "traditional" glue that is less likely to fail and more durable but is tackier and possibly more difficult to manage. Thanks!
These would work great! The hybrid glue can fail a bit quicker than traditional glue, so if you're doing lots of transitions most days, or skinning in loose snow often, you could check out the Pomoca Free Pro 2.0 or the Contour Guide Mix skins.
Thanks for reaching out! Generally, we recommend sizing skins based on the tail width of your skin. The tip of your ski does little to contribute to traction. Instead, wall to wall plush will just add friction. At 135mm, the Hybrid mix will leave 1.5mm of edge showing at the widest point of your tail, which will be just about perfect. Trimming your skins will handle the rest!
I tested it for you. Contours skin sizing is only 7cm per size, but the straps will accommodate a good bit more then that. The 161-168 fits in the middle of the tail strap on the 169cm ski. Go for that one.
Best practice for the Contour Hybrid Mix skins is to store them glue to glue, in a cool dry place. Contour emphasis fully drying the skins before storage. If you have further skin questions, feel free to reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org!
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