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What Ski Designers Mean by “Metal” and Why It Matters

Adding Titanal to a ski's construction can greatly affect how that ski performs on the hill. Here is what it is and what it does.


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What Ski Designers Mean by "Metal" and Why It Matters


Hello! This article is FREE, but you’re only getting part of the story. That’s because Outside+ members get exclusive access to SKI’s “Ask the Gear Nerd” column. Join Outside+ to get expert advice on all the gear you’ve ever heard of from Lead Gear Editor Jon Jay and our expert contacts throughout the ski industry. To submit your gear questions, email editor@skimag.com.

Q: What is Titanal and how does it affect a ski’s performance? —Stephen S., Durango, Colo.

I’ve always just assumed most of SKI’s readers know what we’re talking about when we mention Titanal. My mistake. In short: Titanal is a type of metal.

The majority of skis entered into this year’s SKI Test at Solitude Mountain Resort in Utah have Titanal. Many have two layers of the stuff sandwiching a wood core, and quite a few have modified upper layers that put more (or less) Titanal in key locations. These are factors that SKI references frequently in ski reviews, and we usually note whether or not a ski has Titanal plus how much it has because it’s such an important component that influences how a ski behaves.

Now that you know the basics, let’s get specific. We reached out to a few experts who design skis for further explanation about what Titanal is and how it affects a ski. Some of them got pretty scientific.

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