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Jones Nomad PRO Review

A solid, pre-sized choice when selected for Jones splitboards.
Jones Nomad Pro with Quick Tension Tail Clip
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Price:  $239 List | $199.96 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Lightweight, efficient, packable, good climbing ability
Cons:  Expensive, difficult tale installation, no rip strip
Manufacturer:   Jones Snowboards
By David Reichel ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Mar 27, 2019
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67
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#4 of 7
  • Glide - 25% 7
  • Grip - 25% 7
  • Ease of use - 15% 6
  • Attachment System - 15% 7
  • Glue Icing Glop - 20% 6

Our Verdict

The Jones Nomad Pro skins feature an efficient but tough mohair/nylon mix, that are lightweight and packable. The Nomad Pro skins are a solid choice for any splitboard, but used in conjunction with most Jones splitboards, they offer a specific tail attachment that promises simple and solid tail connections. These skins are also available pre-sized for Jones splitboards, so you can immediately head into the backcountry without fussing about cutting your skins and installing your tails.


Compare to Similar Products

Our Analysis and Test Results

Performance Comparison



Grip


The Nomad Pro skins grip well, but they are not a grip specific design. These are good all around skins that provide ample traction but do not sacrifice other qualities just for grip. When used by an experienced splitboarder these skins climb well. On icier skin tracks, less experienced skinners might struggle more than they would with Voile nylon skins or G3 Splitboard+ Grip skins.

Glide


Offering a 70% mohair and 30% nylon blend, the Nomad Pro skins are slightly biased towards glide. We appreciate this balance in general, and especially on bigger days when the route includes a fair amount of rolling long angle terrain. The energy efficiency of quality glide is important on bigger days. Whatever loss of grip may accompany skins like this can be compensated by through quality technique and mindful route selection.

Ease of Use


The Nomad Pro's are relatively lightweight and pack well when not on your split. The simple design of the Nomad Pro's folds into an impressively small package and the Universal Tail clip does require installation. Unless you use rivets in your daily life, this installation may challenge you to learn some new skills. Jones does have a nice video explaining this process, but compared to the G3 lineup, the setup required for Jones skins is a much longer process.


Attachment System


The tip connector is a simple, traditional metal loop with a rubber gasket factory sewn to the skin material. This is a time tested design that works fine.


Unless the glue perfectly adheres to the splitboard near the tip, it is possible for snow to sneak in underneath the skin from near the tip. This snow intrusion can work its way toward the tail and challenge the overall skin adhesion.


The simple tip attachment doesn't address this issue, but to be fair, even tip connectors that do attempt to fix this issue often fall short.


The tail on the Quick Tension tail clip is adjustable to allow for fine tuning and possibly moving the skins between multiple splitboards. The lip on the connector seats solidly in the notch on Jones splitboards. The simple tail connection between these skins and Jones boards is excellent and arguably superior to more complex skin attachment that are designed to fit a range of board shapes.


Glue and Glop


The glue adheres well to splitboards and releases well. On a few cold mornings when we folded the skin glue back to itself while descending, it was impressively hard to pull apart. The Nomad Pro skins lack a strip of material in the middle of them; often called a skin strip, this ribbon of nylon or plastic reduces the amount of glue available to stick. Since splitboard skins are so wide, when the glue is new and fresh, it can be too strong. These strips prevent the new glue from overwhelming the arm strength of the rider in the short term. In the long term when the glue weakens, due to unavoidable contamination or just the passage of time, removing the strip exposes fresh glue and prolongs the useful life of the skins. The Jones EVER DRY treatment worked well in our testing to prevent gloping under most conditions.

Best Applications


You don't have to be "Pro" to benefit from the Nomad Pro skins, but they do reward users with at least some skinning experience. The mix of grip and glide found in these skins is excellent for intermediate and advanced users, but perhaps not ideal for brand new skinners. If you own a modern Jones splitboard, you might consider the Nomad Pro with the Quick Tension Tail clips. These clips come attached, and you can buy the perfect sized skin that matches your Jones splitboard. Massively simplifying the installation process and speeding your way out the door is a welcome feature.

Value


The Nomad Pro's cost $249 for the Quick Tension clips (for Jones splitboards) or $239 for the Universal Tail clips; this compares to $209 for the regular Jones Nomad skins and $189-199 for G3 Splitboard + skins. Justifying that price premium compared to these other options is tough. The normal Jones Nomad skins work well and feature almost the same features as the Nomad Pros, while the G3 skins possess a higher level engineered attachment clips and require less installation effort. If we were considering the Nomad Pros, we would lean towards the pre-cut ones that perfectly fit Jones splitboards, so we can be out on the snow enjoying splitboarding that much faster.

Conclusion


The Jones Nomad Pros are solid skin options for all but brand new skinners. They are more expensive than most of the other options and may require more time to fit to your splitboard. If buying a Jones splitboard, consider the Nomad Pros with the Quick Tension Clip that has been pre-cut to fit your board.


David Reichel