Simplicity. I don't know very much about adhesive films for metal (didn't know that was an option in skis) but as for pre-preg, it's alot harder to work with. Everything has to stay frozen and if you have a power outage, your entire supply of glass goes bad. Swapping the entire factory over to this would be a huge undertaking. Not impossible, but our factory has become very good at the wet-layup process. Don't fix it if it aint broke. We've considered bringing on another factory to help offset some of the growth demand which would use pre-preg.... and if we do, we'll need to prototype those models separately which adds another complexity factor.
In my experience using infusion, wet-layup, rtm, and pre-preg pre-preg gives hands down better products.
At one point, we used a resin impregnator that wet out 102 inch wide triaxial stitched glass 48 oz fabric in two layers for a total of 96 oz. Resin fraction was held at 45 percent, all over a honeycomb core that was complex. We layed up 10 units per shift using 2,000 lbs of resin per day. These were vacuum backed with the appropriate release and bleeder plies. We did a cure heat for about 60 minutes with 10 units in the oven, we then debagged and did a post cure heat for 8 hours.
We switched to prepreg, pioneering out of autoclave prepregs and developed our own b-stage resin package and subcontracted the application of the resin to the glass, with a 25 percent resin fraction. We were able to use our same ovens, and vacuum bagging methods, but had to revise our heat process. We reduced our resin use by more than 50%, but were able to lay-up 20 units per shift, with a much higher quality product.
We installed three large freezers and to prevent loss of power issues, installed stand-by natural gas powered generators. We never had to use them.
Handling the glass was much easier for our workforce. Our prepreg supplier cut our preforms with a laser cutter and we had zero edge fluff to deal with.
Obviously this was done on an industrial scale.
Prepreg in my opinion is a much higher standard of quality than any other method, which is why of course the aerospace guys use it extensively.
I disagree with you about them being hard to work with and labor savings when trimming your skis will easily make up any additional hassle. I am not sure if any large builders use prepregs, but Fischer is a legitimate aerospace composites company and skis are more or less a side-show for them.
I'm sure you make a great product, but the only real change to your factory revolve around building ovens and using vacuum instead of presses to make your skis.
I no longer ski having been forced to quit do to health issues a few years ago after nearly 60 years a skier. When I skied I skied on race room Nordica GS skis and their amazing Doberman pro line. So I do not know a thing about the sort of skis you make.
But I have occasionally thought about making skis to aerospace specifications, then I smack myself upside the head and realize that the building game is best done by people like you.
Thanks for the discussion, I learned a lot.