Thanks for letting us know about the site Peter. I took a look around their pages. The fact that they are guys from Ascension who have a good reputation should give purchasers some confidence in the business and quality of the product. For my next skins I was considering just buying the material by the meter from the role and getting a pair of Top-Fix clips. CSD seems to be a good alternative to this approach.
The cutting tools and fripperies sold with Ascension skins are not worthwhile and why not add a stuff sack as an extra for those who need them?
My colleague Jeroen, from French Website: http://skitour.fr tells me we should look at climbing skins as a commodity and essential running cost of our hobby rather than as a capital investment. His point is that nothing ruins a day’s touring faster than skins that won’t stay stuck. Jeroen firmly believes in a regular renewal cycle for skins, say every couple of years or 100,000 meters of vertical. Only at 120 Euros ($150) a pop this is a bit hard to take. Maybe CSD is an answer?
It is probably not economical to ship them outside of North America though.
Pretty good at the moment with the dollar value as it is. Ordering a few pairs of skins would be great value for a pooled order. I had a delivery last week from US - 4lbs weight, through Fed-Ex on a 3-5 day service for 38 dollars. (VAT at 17.5% is payable on the value of the goods though, plus a bit of duty)
Shipping charges are getting better. I bought a pair of skis from the excellent Telemark Pyrenees. I think shipping was around 8 euros. Now it is a 50km round trip to my nearest town, about an hour and a half drive and I would have to pay a euro to park so looking at things that way the shipping charge is pretty reasonable. Even Conrad in Germany only charges 15 Euros to ship to France. That said I don’t want all my local shops to disappear so I try to strike a balance.