2017 / Outdoor And Exercise Equipment / Exercise Equipment / Student

Bobcat Snow Shoes

  • Prizes
    Gold in Outdoor and Exercise Equipment/Exercise Equipment
  • Company
    Student, Austria
  • Lead Designer
    Benjamin Miller
  • Client
    Carleton University
  • Project Link

Snowshoeing has become an increasingly popular
sport in Canada. It has grown from being a
leisure activity and function tool into a
highly competitive sport. As with most
competitive sport, seconds can define
everything and slight advantages can make a
big difference. However, after talking with
competitive snowshoe racers they expressed
that they feel under supported with the
product offerings and variety. Racers ask for
more refined designs and innovations that can
actually help them win.
Cross examination with other sports such as
cycling, skiing and tennis, it was observed
that there are a wide array of offerings
catering to every little nuance in the sport.
Bicycles have tiers based around performance
with aluminum frames for entry level riders
and carbon frames for the highest level of
performance. This was the main driver for the
Bobcat snowshoes; to design a top of the line
snow shoe that caters to racer's high
performance requirements and boasts a carbon
fiber frame.

Snowshoes and tennis rackets are intriguingly
similar. They both have a main frame that hold
strung elements. They both need to be light
and stiff and have a spread surface area.
Investigation into how carbon tennis rackets
are made revealed that they use a method
called 'inflation bladder molding'. In this
process woven tubes of carbon fiber are
expanded into a closed mold with a bladder and
positive air pressure.

Photo Credit: Student