So after reading in the forums about an idea to interview NS members, I decided to take a stab at this venture by interviewing four members on here who I felt are, in some way or another, making their own path in the ski industry. These are all members who you likely recognize and hopefully you enjoy this little mini-series in my blog :)
Part 1: Iggyskier
Some of you guys may not know too much about one of NS's newest mods Scott (aka Iggyskier), so I decided to ask him whats up and to explain to the rest of NS what he is up to these days with his new ski building venture on3p.
** Note on the name: O N 3 P, or ON(E) 3 P, or just Thirteenth and Proctor. **
Me: So Scott I gotta start off with this, how often do you find yourself logged onto NS?
Iggy: Haha too much. These days I am on everyday to either add some ON3P updates to the cult, respond to posts in there, or PMs either related to the skis, from friends, or related to mod stuff like delete threads, posts, etc. My computer is generally open and on NS, so even when I am working in the shop or out at the bars I am technically on NS. I am really bad about having too many tabs open in firefox. Sometimes I will seriously have like 20 open at once....usually one is NS. But yeah, the answer is too much, especially consider that I don't post in the main forums much anymore.
Me: Why’s that?
Iggy - Avoid the main forums would probably be the wrong description. I just find that many of the threads there are.....pointless? Or how about exhausting to become a part of. I guess I post in them enough, but there are many threads I often feel like I have something to say, but that it generally is not worth it because many of these threads become a totally clusterfuck very quickly. When I was younger I think I got into them a lot more, but haha I am older now and definitely have my mind on other things.
Anything related to politics or race relations or how one skier or member is a douche pretty much suck. The political ones are the worst. But there really isn't much you can do about them, so you sort of just watch as these train-wreck threads happen. Sometimes they are funny (and othertimes they are terrifying), but after seeing them for so long they get old. A lot of them, too, are just posted to make people agitated, and I think a lot of members sometimes forget that.
So instead of say avoiding the main forums, I would say it is more refraining from involvement. Sometimes I get involved, but most of the time I just read and move on.
These threads are often a product of summer, but NS is definitely not immune in the winter either.
There is also a lot of times where going to the main forums involved doing mod crap, which contrary to the belief of some, is not what I would prefer spending my time doing. It is not much fun deleted 100+ threads one by one just so someone can be a dick. But people will keep doing it, so not much we can do there.
There are also tons of threads in ski gabber or gear talk that are so overdone. I know often it is new members who post them, but asking what ski is for you or what bindings are the best or if your din is too high is incredibly redundant, even with our (currently I hope!) less than stellar search function.
I hope that doesn't come off as pompous or anything. There are lots of good threads on NS. But with the good, comes the bad. And right now there seems to be a lot of it.
Me: I hear ya…I’ve been sucked into a few threads in NSG this summer that ended in pages and pages of rants...its good times :P So what else are you up to this summer? You recently graduated university if I remember correctly...
Iggy: Well I graduated in May from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, WA with a Bachelors of Science in Biology with a premedical focus.
Since then it has been a mix of traveling a bit and spending time trying to get the 50 pairs of ON3Ps out to everyone. I am moving down to Portland in August, so I have spent some time hanging out down there, checking out the bar scene, and chilling on the coast with my girlfriend and other friends. I also just got back from a week relaxing in the Dunton Hot Springs outside of Telluride which was great. Haha almost got to met Tom Cruise too.
Anyway, most of my summer has been spent building skis. The process is I think a lot harder than people think. There is tons that go into it, especially when you spent a lot of your time cutting, shaping, and profiling all the skis cores, doing mundane tasks like ripping sheets of fiberglass, carbon fiber, etc. There is a ton of prep work, so that is mostly what I have been doing.
We have almost ten pairs pressed now, and I need to finish up the rest of the core shaping and profiling (hopefully these next three days) and then am going to be going on a crazy run of pressing 4-5 pairs a day for 2-3 weeks and then moving right down to Portland. I think I am in Portland a day before I am flying to Dallas for a wedding (god...help...me).
When I get back to Portland, I am not totally sure what my plans are. I need to get a job, but am sort of going through a little midlife crisis trying to decide if I want to just say fuck it and try to build skis or hold off and hopefully get some sort of biology research job. It is hard because I want something that I am not totally tied down to, but I also need something that will pay the bills.
Me: Sounds like you’re keeping pretty damn busy between On3p, your school, and the process of moving. How the hell do you balance this all this? You've gotta have some people helping you out along the way right?
Iggy: It has been tough. For the whole ON3P thing, you combine a huge financial burden too, which is why the process has been really drawn out.
The biggest thing for me this year really was researching and writing my thesis. That took forever. 10 months of research, ended up with a 22,000+ word paper. That was fucking exhausting. Combine that with trying to build skis, keep up with other classes, and staying sane (aka skiing and partying) and it was hard.
Balance is tough. Time management is one of the most difficult things for me. You just sort of have to go for it and see where it goes....not much else to it for me.
I have had some help here and there. David Steele (Guddgulf) and Billy "Zane" (XavierD) have made it down to help me work a bit, but for the most part I am on my own for the time being. There was times that it sucked to do on my own. My ski press weights about 2000 lbs. Drilling these huge beams by myself at times was very....scary. There also is the fact that before this I had never used any of the tools I use now. Routers/Router tables, Miter/Table/Jib saws, sanders, etc. I had to learn all of that on my own, and I still have all my fingers, so I must have done something right.
Most of my help comes in the form of mental support from people who have made this all possible. ON3P has been incredibly drawn out, for me and those around since the beginning. As I have said, it has taken a lot of money to get where we are. I started with nothing, not one single tool, but now I have a shop full of tools, a decently nice home made ski press, and enough materials for 50 skis. It just has taken forever to set this up, while keeping up with school.
But as I said, having people who have stayed with this (especially the guys from the first round of testers) has helped me for sure. There has been several times where I just wanted to say fuck it, I am over this. But here I am, still doing it, and without the support of the people who have been behind whatever ON3P is at the moment, that would not be the case.
Me: Any shoutouts you wanna give on behalf of on3p?
Iggy: Haha how long do you have? Basically everyone in the cult and everyone who is getting a pair or who even wants a pair. You guys know who you are and I am incredibly grateful. With them ON3P is nothing. Everyone has been great and it has been awesome to develop some skis with you all.
I feel like I need to give Matty (Freezed) a shout out here because he produced some very amazing graphics for us and has been a huge help. I can't wait to see what comes from him later.
Also to all the testers. You guys are taking a chance on something and I hope that the skis live up to your expectations.
I also need to give a shout out to Luke at Moment skis. He came thru for ON3P when we needed it and I will always be grateful. The guys at moment as class acts and make some kick ass skis. Very stoked to see what they will accomplish.
Me: And just for those people who don't know what On3p is, wanna give me a quick little rundown about it?
Iggy: Well ON3P started off sort of as a joke. I ended up waiting on long time for a pair of custom skis, and was just not stoked on them when they arrived. They were was stiffer than I expected, and far too short, and for what I paid and got I was very disappointed. So the idea got thrown out that maybe I should try to do this myself. In the end, I would have some cool skis and a fun experience. So I sort of got it going, talked with a few friends about it, and we went from there.
Cult got started, and the idea began picking up a bit of steam. Originally we were going to try to produce one or two skis, something middle of the road just to see what worked and how to do it. And the idea sort of got bigger, more people got involved, and it got to the point where it became apparent I should just give this a bigger chance than a 3-5 ski run and I opened up the possibility of getting skis to friends.
And through that, here we are today. I have done my best to keep most ON3P stuff out of the main forums for the time being because I want to just focus on getting the skis to people, not hyping it up. I hope the skis will do that for themselves. Basically the reason I am so grateful for all the testers is that they pay for materials, which for me on my scale is not cheap. So you buy your slot, and I am building them.
People now get to choose their topsheet, ski shape, approximate flex, and tip and tail rocker. I am also varying the construction for people with different levels of dampening and carbon to help suit what people want as well as test out several different construction variations. We have a bunch of different shapes. They are named after people who have been involved in ON3P. We have seven different shapes, ranging from 191cm to 179cm, for basically whatever you want to do. Pow, park, everyday. Anyone interested can just contact me to hear more about them. I am also doing custom skis for someone's dad and the girlfriend.
I rip, shape, and profile the cores myself, bend the edges by hand, cut and glue the edges to the base, and then lay up and finish the skis all in a very very tiny 300 sf single car garage. It gets the job done.
Plan for this season is just to get skis on snow, see if people are as stoked on them as I am, and decide what to then do about it.... We should have about 50 skis out this year.
Me: I’m actually pretty pumped to see what comes of this and I think its rad as hell that all these NS members have banded together and thrown down their own cash to you to make this work. The internet is a wonderful thing eh?
Iggy: It is cool to have a lot of really great people involved, and without NS or the internet none of this would be happening. Without the internet I would have never known how to get this all started too.
What is crazy right now is seeing just how many new companies there are. I swear every week there is a new ski company these days. That is about the only thing holding me back from really giving this a go full time.
Rapid Fire questions:
ME / Iggy
Ski Gabber or Non Ski Gabber? Ski Gabber
Favorite ski movie? Ski movie III, Believe, and Royalty
Favorite upcoming ski movie trailer? Only seen one, Hunting yeti, But cannot wait to see The Massive.
EDIT: Just saw the new TGR....holy shit that looks sick.
Favorite beer? Too many to name. I really like the stuff from Full Sail out of Hood River, OR.
Passion outside of skiing? Music, Biology (mostly animal physiology and evolution), Environmental stuff, other science stuff like the history of the Universe, photography. All of that is really cool to me. Also medicine, specifically anything related to trauma.
Whats in your cd/mp3 player? Computer just died so it is a total random collection right now. Mostly rap and hip-hop, some rock, some other random stuff like girl talk.
Reading anything right now? The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins.
Pet peeves? Loud eaters, slow drivers, neocons, intolerant people, non-functioning electronics, anything related to Dell.
Afterbang, yay or nay? To be totally honest, when David (Guggulf) was working here with me a few weeks ago I had to ask him what the hell it was and just laughed when he told me. I am pretty sure I said that if I saw someone do that in front of me I would run up and punch them in the face (not really). I mean I really don't give a shit anymore. I think it is fucking dumb, but if someone has more fun while skiing if they do afterbang or whatever, by all means afterbang-away. To me, it is sort of like the whole bandanna over the face thing. I personally think that you look like an idiot who is just doing what all the other idiots are doing, but who really gives a fuck? So for me, nay. For those who have fun doing it, yay.
Dream vacation spot? Greek Isles, South Africa, or Japan.
Other hobbies? For too long it has been skiing, ski building, and school. Once down in Portland I would love to add biking, surfing, and fly fishing to the stuff that I get to do all the time. It would also be fun (depending on my work situation) to become an EMT or a Trauma tech, but we shall see.
Me: Thanks for taking the time to talk with me scott, any final words for the NS crowd?
Iggy: Have a good summer and pray for snow. Winter will be here soon. If anyone has any questions about ON3P, just get in contact with me. PM or email work. I will be happy to let you know more about it. If you happen to see a pair at the mountains this year by all means bug the hell out of the person with them. Haha need to keep the testers on their toes. Hopefully they will have good things to say about the skis!
Sam Caylor with a few of next years skis.
My Jeronimo's with a custom graphic for girlfriend and myself
Most of my quiver for the season....
Great Scott Rocker