Ryan Schmies x J Collab
I've waited over 15 years to work with Ryan Schmies on a ski graphic!
Over a decade ago, Ryan created K2's legendary "Public Enemy" ski graphic. At the time, he pioneered a new, revolutionary style of covering the entire ski with artwork. The rest of the ski industry quickly followed his lead, however I unfortunately was never able to work with him, as obviously he was with another ski company. Now that he and I are independent, it only took one phone call!
Ryan grew up skiing a small hill called Cascade in Wisconsin and today he lives in Washington state skiing the Cascade Range, so the name for this graphic came easy. He used good ol' fashioned pencil and ink from his prized assortment of cheap pens while watching replays of 'Ride the Lightning' and 'Back Street Boys' videos to create this masterpiece.
143 - 117 - 133
The widest ski in our Explore Collection for effortlessly floating and surfing the deepest days.
“The Friend” ski was designed in collaboration with athlete Giray Dadali to surf pow, stomp landings and charge harder with less effort than ever before…. so you don’t have to be a pro to ski like one! Its long, gentle rocker and 117mm waist keep you effortlessly floating, slashing and popping even on the deepest days. When the pow’s gone you’ll be able to count on its solid maple wood core and high energy carbon fiber to help you blast through chunder with an unprecedented smooth and reliable feel. The real surprise comes from its tight sidecut, enabling you to have fun gripping and ripping firm snow for versatility like none other. The Friend is a rare breed of powder ski earning it more awards than any other in its class. Float, surf, slash and butter in the deep pow until it gets tracked out, then have equal fun charging endless top to bottom chunder and groomer laps. This is a powder skier’s dream one-ski quiver!
The Friend In The Wild
Share your shred by tagging #JFriendSki on Instagram
This Ski is Kind of a Big Deal
"An excellent pow ski for a wide range of skiers; capable as a directional or freestyle option."
- Blister Gear Review
For powder-hunters, The Friend should be considered essential when traveling out of bounds.
- Freeskier Magazine
"The Friend was designed with more than just overhead pow in mind: A sturdy maple core and surprisingly tight sidecut are intended to enable playfulness when the powder’s gone.
- Backcountry Magazine
The Friend is the kind of ski I'd take on the trip of a lifetime without considering bringing a backup. It's PB&J exactly when you need it, and Dad made it.
- Powder Magazine (Ski of the Year)
"This is the ski you want if you need your legs to last all day, especially when it won’t stop puking snow. After all, no one should call it quits when the refills are free."
- SKI Magazine
the finest materials
By selling these skis factory direct to you, we're able to invest more money into using the highest quality materials possible for a game-changing level of premium performance & durability.
Lighter with more energy & pop than fiberglass
Just like fiberglass carbon needs to be fully stretched like a guitar string to give you the most pop. Unlike other brands of skis with wavy black carbon, not stretched, thus you’re not getting the energy out of it, we use pre-cured, pre-stretched carbon fiber laminates. This means the carbon is pre-stretched & cured under perfect conditions at the carbon fiber production facility prior to us receiving it. This pre-cured carbon laminate is twice the cost but also gives you many more times the performance. You’ll feel it!
Maple Wood Core
Highest quality wood for a lively energetic feel & long life
The factory is located in Quebec Canada, so we got Maple, eh! Maple is a very expensive high quality hard wood, thus the reason it’s used to build floors and furniture in your house that lasts a lifetime. Maple absorbs impact, and has a ton of energy for a very ski feel and long life. We run 4 – 20mm wide Maple laminates the entire length of the core, plus 100% under your foot for unprecedented energy, durability & binding screw retention. At the tips of my skis you’ll see more of the light colored Aspen which is incredibly lightweight with plenty strong when laminated alongside Maple for reduced swing weight at the tips.
Full Height Sidewalls
Maximum impact resistant & vibration dampening
We’re using super durable, high impact absorbing Ultra High Molecular Weight (UHMW) polyethylene for our sidewalls. This is the same material we use on our ski's bases. It’s very impact resistant and since it’s full height, it also absorbs more vibration like using a longer spring in your car’s suspension. Take a metal pipe and hit it against a rock, then do the same with a piece of plastic. The metal vibrates through to your bones & the plastic absorbs the vibration for you. That’s the difference of having full height plastic shock absorbing sidewalls over your edges or not. We’re cutting the sides of the sidewalls to a 10* angle, with a nice step at the bottom for easy tuning like race skis.
Extra Thick Edge
The thickest, most durable edge in the industry
We use the thickest hardened steel edges in the industry 2.2mm x 2.5mm. More metal = more durable. Whether you’re accidentally hitting a rock or purposely sliding a rail, you’re edges will live a much longer life. You’ll also be able to re-tune many more times or file them round to slide rails longer.
High Performance Base
The fastest, thickest, most durable base material
I don’t match my clothes, but I always match my base & edge. We use the thickest edge so I also use the thickest base in the industry 1.8mm. I use sintered Ultra High Molecular Weight (UHMW) Polyethylene, the highest quality base material available. It absorbs wax better, slides faster, and is more durable than any other base material. Basically it’s super hard & fast, like your _______ likes it.
Absorbs vibration and dramatically reduces risk of delam
Think of a ski’s construction like a magazine, each page = layers of material in the ski. Then bend your magazine you’ll see every page slide against each other, this is “shear”. This shear force trys to separate, thus delaminate all the layers in your ski every time it’s flexed or the tips are slapped down on a jump landing. This is why I run a layer of thin rubber around the full perimeter of the ski over the entire edge, plus the full width of across the tip and tail. The rubber acts as an insulator so that the edge and other materials can slide against each other when flexing without delaminating. This dramatically improves durability & reduces vibration.
Fibers run in 4 directions to maximize energy & strength
Fiberglass works like a guitar string, when it is flexed it wants to spring back, that’s the energy or pop you feel in a ski. However this energy can only be applied in the direction the actual fiberglass is run. This means the more directions of fiberglass, the more energy, pop & responsiveness. Industry standard “Triaxial” fiberglass runs in only three directions, we use a Quasi Isotropic fiberglass configuration, same as the aerospace industry to maximize energy & strength in as many directions as possible, 4 different axis 0, 90, +45, -45. It costs more, but it’s worth the performance.
High Definition Digital Printing
You already know I put a lot of value in graphics! So instead of traditional silk screening with low resolution image quality, you’ve seen the dots! I’m using a state of the art, Fuji UV Flat bed printer, a $170,000 machine that enables me to print high resolution from my computer directly to the plastic top & base. The resolution is unbelievable photo-real so you’ll be one of few skiers in the world with skis looking this good on your feet.
|Weight Per Ski||2230g||2310g||2480g|
|Rocker Height Tip / Tail||8 / 3mm||9 / 3mm||10 / 3mm|
|Tip / Tail Length||270 / 120mm||325 / 140mm||445 / 195mm|
|Tip / Tail Height||75 / 37.5mm||75 / 37.5mm||75 / 37.5mm|
|Boot from Center||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|Boot from Tail||805mm||835mm||865mm|