by Lorren Hammond
Lorren Hammond sits atop the new 9-ton CNC machine
For 2012, we've rolled out numerous enhancements. Almost every model has been improved based on our own rigorous testing, team riders putting boards thru the ringer, and incredibly valuable input from Comet riders all over the planet. Thanks so much. Keep it coming!
See below for a complete list, but a few notables include a redesign of stress areas on all the drop-thru boards to make them way stronger. Also, for the limited edition Challenge board, which has become part of our permanent line as the very popular Takeover, I engineered the new "clamshell" wheelwells using advanced 3D CAD/CAM geometry and surfaces. This was so well received, we’ve added it to the Ethos line as well.
- Takeover - * NEW BOARD *
- Ethos 36, 38, 40 - Complete overhaul including 1'' longer nose, 10'' width, wider tail, clamshell wheel wells, and now 7-ply for the 36, 8-ply for the 38, and 9-ply for the 40 providing a broader range of agility and stability through the line.
- Pagan & Loki - Broadened the standing platform and strengthened the drop mounts and neck with more wood, less taper, and no wheel wells.
- FSM 36, 40 - No more wheel wells and more wood around the drop through mounts for added strength.
- Voodoo XL - As of late last year... Widened the tail, broadened the standing platform, and brought the front truck back 1''
Since we talked about production last year, an 18,000 pound change has been implemented here at the Comet Production Studio. Comet boards are now machined on two CNC routers, which includes a Komo VR508, 18,000 lbs (nine tons) of high-speed, super accurate robotics that uses two 16hp spindles to machine wood, aluminum and alloys to an accuracy of .0005'' -- half a thousandth of an inch! It changes its own tools, cuts out a skateboard at 600 inches per minute, does multiple operations simultaneously, and grips the boards being machined with over 350 cubic feet per minute of mega-vacuum. Of course, normal people go "er, what??!!" when I say such things, but tech-geeks go "duuuuude! That is so cool! Let me see it run." But whichever you are, the results of this machine will impress you, and you will be able to see it run soon when we post pictures and video. The new CNC has been instrumental in allowing us to both take the whole Comet line to a new level of technical excellence, but also to keep up with the ever-increasing global demand for Comet boards. More, it is allowing us to process our offcuts more effectively, and plans are moving forward for pelletizing our wood chips to heat the facility and presses, and numerous products from the larger offcuts will debut this year. We are also looking at ways to capture the heat created by new equipment and channeling it to dry finish on boards. Rather than waste extra energy fighting the heat, we will use it. We work to take "green" and "creative" to new levels. Green is a perpetual driving force here, not just a buzzword. Stay tuned for more on all these fun endeavors. Thank you all for your enthusiasm and excellent feedback! Keep it coming, and feel free to drop me a line. Lorren Comet Production Director Lorren@Cometskateboards.com