Objects Database

Madshus Cross Country Racing Skis & Pilz Bindings

Accession Number


Object Name

Madshus Cross Country Racing Skis & Pilz Bindings




Hermione Cooper

Accession Date


Brief Description

Pair of Madshus cross country racing skis with separate Pilz bindings


skis - wood bindings - metal, plastic


skis -210(l) x 4.8(w) cms Bindings - 10(l) x13(w) x5(h) cms

Number Of Objects


Inscription Description

On skis "MADE IN NORWAY 45-210-31813 MADSHUS" "45 CDO" written on by hand
On bindings "PILZ W GERMANY 75"


red, gold


skis - Madshus bindings - Pilz

Object Production Place

skis - Norway bindings - W Germany


Norwegian, Martin Madshus, started making skis in his barn back in 1906. Skis were made from a single piece of wood back then, but Martin's innovative style saw him produce some of the world's first laminated skis in 1936. Laminated wooden skis were perfected through the 1940/50's and 60's and by the 1970's they were as good as they ever got, since in 1974, Madshus, along with the rest of the ski world, started using fibreglass and plastic to make skis, with wooden ones becoming obsolete, almost over night, though they could still be skied on, of course.
Founder of our Heritage Collection, Mick Tighe, was in the Royal Marines Cross Country Ski Team back in the 1970's and witnessed the transition from wood to fibreglass when taking part in a race on wooden skis one year and fibreglass the next.
The skis we have here in the collection were actually issued to Mick in 1972 as part of his racing kit, but were never used, making them exceedingly rare. The 45 Cdo painted on them stands for 45 Commando, Royal Marines; the unit to which Mick belonged back then.
We've put a set of bindings with the skis which are similar to the type that would have been attached if they had got that far. As it was, Mick got a new set of fibreglass skis and off he went!

Acquisition Method

Donated by Mick Tighe

Acquisition Date


Condition Check Date



Spectrum : UK Museum documentation standard, V.3.1 2007



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