EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Old skier with old gear looking to update
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Old skier with old gear looking to update

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone!

 

I'm new to Epic...  just accidently found it while researching my options for new gear, and I'm looking for some help finding new skis.

 

About me: 

I've skied for 40+ years and I would guess that I'm a level 7 skier at this point.  I'm 52 years young, stand bare foot at 5'10", weighing in currently at 177lbs butt naked.

I've skied my old Olin and K2 skis for all these years.  The latest pair of Olins that I just hung up for this past season were my 870s...  anyone remember those (their about 68mm underfoot)?  I guess I've grown tired of all the 25 year-olds and younger commenting on how cool all my "retro" gear is !!  Actually it's been kind-of fun!   (Boots?  Would you believe I'm still skiing my Hansens ?..  Love them!)

 

I've never been on any of the new wider profile skis that are now the norm.  I've also never skied anything less than 185s in length.  I love to cruise at moderately high speed carving turns down steep faces and I also really enjoy just seeing how many precision turns I can make before the next headwall.  I ski mainly at Purgatory (Durango Mountain Resort) when the groomers are soft with fresh snow.  I also find myself wanting to ski the edges of these groomers in the fresh powder (which means at pretty fast clip to get any float at all out of my "retro" skis!)

 

I do understand that the lengths of skis has shorten due to width and stiffness, but I really would like to stick with some length......... 177s sound ok to you everybody?  

I've been looking at Volkl AC50s, Blizzard 8.7...  

 

Anyone have any advice they feel like sharing?  Thanks!

post #2 of 22

First I will say loose the Hansons. Second, Welcome to Epic. Third, back to first, get yourself to a fitter for some modern boots. Fourth, There are two dozen skis out there that would work for you...lastly..see the first thing I said. 

post #3 of 22

Thumbs up to what Phil said about the boots.  The new skis are so easy in varied conditions that you will feel years younger.  I do.

post #4 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post

First I will say loose the Hansons. Second, Welcome to Epic. Third, back to first, get yourself to a fitter for some modern boots. Fourth, There are two dozen skis out there that would work for you...lastly..see the first thing I said. 


+1 on losing the Hansens.  I've seen quite a few boots from the 80's disintegrating on the slopes in the last couple of years.  Basically, heel or toe pieces completely ripped of the boot.  The boot can look great, but plastic becomes brittle over time - I would not ski in anything over 8-10 years old, even if it was out-of-the-box new.  Never mind that today's boots are light years ahead in terms of performance.

 

Second, I suspect that when you talk about carving down the steeps on your straight skis, your definition of carving is not the same as what most people on shaped skis call carving.  I suggest that you either rent or get a cheap/used pair of skis with a small turn radius (13m or less) and take a lesson or two.  A Head SuperShape, or any consumer slalom ski will do.  Eventually, you'll probably end up with something else, but I think a slalom ski is the best tool to discover what the shaped skis are about.  

 

 

post #5 of 22

Welcome to Epic! 

You are getting some excellent advice here. The boot is the most important part of your gear, so the first thing to do is find a good boot fitter. Take your time to select the right boot, and don't forget the custom foot beds. Highly recommended. I struggled for years with some old boots that I had hung on to for far too long. Then I finally went out and picked up a pair of Nordica W8's. I added a quality foot bed and was amazed at how it changed my experience of skiing. I didn't think it was even possible to enjoy such comfort in a ski boot. The new boots improved my connection to the ski, and hence to the snow. This made for more precise control in turns. More precision added more confidence. I started trying things I hadn't been able to do before. I was skiing faster, cranking harder turns, just having way more FUN! You'll be amazed at the difference between the old and the new boots. And once you have your new boots, there's all those interested new skis to check out.... 

post #6 of 22

Agree with all the comments about new boots.  Next I would say demo some skis AND take a lesson or two on how to carve with the newer skis.  It is amazing to me how many people have gone to new skis yet still throw the tails out, skidding their way down the slopes.  That was how i was skiing until I took a couple lessons and can now carve (most of the time).  Good luck and enjoy the new stuff.  It will definitely make you feel and ski younger. ( I've transformed a friend into wider, shorter skis and he is carving up a storm including doing so on his 80th birthday in March of this year at Snowbasin!!!)

post #7 of 22

 

"Hi.  I'm crgildart, and I'm a recovering Hanson Citation addict"...

 

Just kidding, kicked those to the curb for Nordica boots in the early 80s..

 

Hey, you don't need lubricant to put on modern ski boots.   Think of all the money new boots will save you!biggrin.gif

 

post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 

Thanks to all that have chimed in here to my questions!   It appears that most feel I should dump the Hansons when I felt that was the best boot I'd ever worn!  Ha!  CrGildArt, these were a later model Hanson that didn't require the lubricant...  could get into them with a resonable fight and then they locked down my foot like no other boot I'd had ever used.   But the consenus is to dump the boot and then go from there....   so be it.  

 

REI has quite a few of there ski boots on sale right now.......   anyone have any favorites there?  Gimmesnow commented on the W8 Nordica..      I do need a boot that will allow canting.  (I had shim plates under both sets of bindings on the the Olins.)

 

And Yes, I really do know what a true carving turn is and how to execute.....  at least as to how it was defined on the non-shaped skis.

 

I do appreciate everyone's comments........ keep 'em coming!

 

 

 

 

post #9 of 22

I owned Hanson's. Just put them down and back up slowly. Trust me, modern boots are waaaay better. More comfortable, not necessarily that hard to get on and off, far far better performance. Get thee to a bootfitter. As far as the rest, I just checked REI, not that much that's special. Atomic Blackeye Ti's are a nice ski, for instance, but the 167 isn't your size. Kendos are nice skis, but may be overkill. AC50's are a very beefy ski that's been dropped by Volkl in favor of some more versatile designs. Blizzard 8.7's are superb skis, but demand a fair amount of attention to enjoy, would work if you plan to take lessons, like to push yourself.

 

But rather than advocate a specific ski, suggest, as others have, that you do a search on Gear Reviews for several threads about skis in the mid 70's-mid 90's range. Then also suggest you take a look at some of the deals from shops run or owned by Epic folks. Try Dawgcatching, Sierra Jim or Phil, Whitehouse, others. They'll have prices as good or better than REI, and offer you a level of advice and followthrough that REI only fantasizes about. One of the things they'll ask off the top is what you look for in a ski, what type of terrain you ski, what kind of a skier you are in terms of style. If you can think that through, it'll help your choice. No ski Rules Them All...

post #10 of 22
Thread Starter 

"Back up slowly..."   Ha!  They're that bad?   Ok, I'll consider them retired.   Thanks for the advice on who to buy from.    I'll go take a look at what those dealers offer.  Didn't realize that Volkl had dropped the AC50.   The Blizzard IQ has my interest because of their "slider" binding mount.   I live in a great area for backcountry skiing too.  My thinking was that I might be able to buy a AT binding (that would be suitable for frontside too) that I could switch back and forth on the 8.7 for the groomers and a wider ski for AT skiing.

 

Of course, that starts a whole new puzzle(s) to solve.......    So for now, I think I continue with my hunt for a 30% off and 70% on setup.

post #11 of 22

Welcome to Epic!

 

My story is identical. I returned to skiing in the spring of 2008 at age 51. I was on old 195cm K2's and equally old Nordica boots. I spent a lot of time on this site and others researching skis and then demoed some of them at Snowbird. Bought a pair of Steepandcheap.com and love them. I also loved my old boots and so I ignored the advice to get new ones. Mainly due to my old memory on how difficult it was to find good fitting boots. Anyway, in 2009 the plastic on the top cuff of one of the boots ripped away and I was forced to finally capitulate and get new ones. Best thing I ever did!  My advice is like some of the others: get new boots and demo as many skis as you can. Then look for deals on the ones you like in the off season.  Good luck and welcome back to skiing!

post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vince F View Post

Welcome to Epic!

 

My story is identical. I returned to skiing in the spring of 2008 at age 51.



+1, returned in 2006 at age 41 having skied K2 812 195 cms for most of the 80s and all of the 90s.  I picked up several older but clean used or not used skis from 2002-2005 to try some of everything.

post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 

Thanks VinceF and Crgildart for the encouraging words......     I really really do like my Hansons and the integrity of the boot is still sound, BUT I also love to buy gear, so it was nice to have some "help" in persuading me to hang them up.  ha!      

 

Anyone have a favorite boot that I should look at?    Be sure to state where you bought them, flex rating, if they allow a cant adjustment, your weight and skiing style...    Thanks!

post #14 of 22

Koflach Comp 911  biggrin.gif.

 

Seriosly though, get new boots, but DON'T LET ANYONE TALK YOU INTO SETTLING FOR LESS.  Don't accept boots that are not up to par in the name of comfort.  Don't settle for anything less than rock solid clamped down heel hold.   Research whom to get you boots fitted by; who does the work is far more important than what boot to try; a good bootfitter will choose the correct boot for you.

 

As to skis, I agree with a comment above, about getting a SL ski to work on short turns for a while, and then going back up in turn radius.

post #15 of 22

Daleboot VFF Pro. Custom fit. They do a good job there and I think the boots are great.

post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by WallDiver7 View Post

Thanks VinceF and Crgildart for the encouraging words......     I really really do like my Hansons and the integrity of the boot is still sound, BUT I also love to buy gear, so it was nice to have some "help" in persuading me to hang them up.  ha!      

 

Anyone have a favorite boot that I should look at?    Be sure to state where you bought them, flex rating, if they allow a cant adjustment, your weight and skiing style...    Thanks!



There is a boot fitting forum its such a big topic. The problem with us suggesting boots is that every one has different feet and even a small difference can make a boot very uncomfortable for some one. You should make an appointment with a professional bootfiter. Looks like your in CO so I grabbed the CO boot fitters from the forum for you. I feel like theres a more extensive list but I cant find it, and I'm sure some one else that reads this is from CO and can direct you to something closer to you. I'm debating buying new boots this off season as well and plan on spending a lot of time trying different models.

 

BOOTech,Inc.
Jim Lindsay
BOOTech,Inc.
Aspen Highlands
Aspen,CO
970-925-2526
www.bootech.net

________________________________________________

gregfits
Greg Hoffmann
Ski Boot fitting,Inc.
Lionshead Circle and Skier Enhancement Center
Vail, Colorado
802-379-1014
hoffmann.greg@gmail.com
www.skibootfitting.com

________________________________________________

Jeff Bergeron
Jeff Bergeron
Boot Fixation
127 S. Main, Breckenridge, CO
970.453.8546
http://bootfixation.com/

________________________________________________
screamindoggies (Screamin' Doggies)
David MacMillan C.Ped
Bootdoctors / Telluride
Telluride Mountain Village 81435
970-728-8954 shop
970-729-0262 cell
dave@bestfitboots.com
bestfitboots.com

post #17 of 22

advice to be skeptical about: off brand, exotic boots and all race skis. really, possibly bad ideasnonono2.gif, based on OP's specs, IMO.

post #18 of 22

Once you get your new boots, get out and find some new skis. There is so much exciting gear these days! And don't shy away from twin-tips just because you don't ski backwards. I picked up Atomic's new Panic twin tip at REI in Bellingham, WA for US $224.00. I brought 'em back across the border into BC (REI won't ship into Canada) and had them mounted with Tyrolia LD-12 bindings ($119.00 at Sport Mart with free installation and wax). That puts me into new skis for about $400, not too bad at all. The Panic is light, quick, and forgiving, it has cool features like Adaptive Camber, Step Down Sidewall, and Tip Rocker, and it's way more fun that my old K2 5500's ever were. The Panic may not suit your style of skiing, but that's okay, because these days there is something available to suit just about every style and level of skiing. One word of advice if shopping at REI: The technical support is not that good, so be sure to do your homework.  

post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by davluri View Post

advice to be skeptical about: off brand, exotic boots and all race skis. really, possibly bad ideasnonono2.gif, based on OP's specs, IMO.


What is an exotic boot? One with snakeskin? roflmao.gif

 

post #20 of 22

Agree with the advice about using a bootfitter rather than REI. A good fitter will guarantee the fit and tweak them for free as well. Remeber that too small is better than too big, and too stiff better than too soft (you can make a boot bigger and softer, not smaller and stiffer), and all brands have pretty much the same range of boots but fit differently--fit is everything. As far as skis -since you're a western skier I'd suggest looking at something in the 90's.  I happen to like Volkl Mantras (which are changing next year) but ski model and length are very personal. Mine are 177's (I'm the same size as you and 60 years old) but they're too short for my son who's the same size.  I think you'll find a modern ski in that width will carve just fine and float a whole lot better. You can actually go wider than 90's  with a ski with tip rocker and traditional camber underfoot, but that might be too much of a change to do all at once. Contrary to others I haven't found the technique to be that different with newer skis. We old school skiers threw our tails around because we had to, not because we were taught to.  The main thing with buying skis is demo. And every time I get new skis I feel 10 years younger. 

post #21 of 22

It's important to demo, especially since you are coming off old style skinny skis. Except that the demo rule doesn't apply to me. Here is a list of my recent non-demo ski purchases:

 

1. Atomic Panic (173cm) - A total impulse buy. After one day on them I knew I had made the right decision.

2. Head Mojo 80 (172cm) - Never tried them, bought them on sale. It took me three days to get 'em dialed in. A nice carver for fresh snow and groomed runs.

3. Dynastar Big Trouble (176cm) - A logical progression from the lighter duty Troublemaker twin-tip, which I owned previously. Did not demo prior to purchase, love them for all conditions.

 

I don't totally agree with the coventional wisdom that renting or demoing is important before making a purchasing decision. Demoing a ski for several runs will tell you a few things about a ski, but it won't tell you everything. I was initially disappointed with the Head Mojo but I gave myself some time (several trips to the mountain) to get to know and appreciate the ski, rather than expecting it to serve all my needs right away. Every ski manufacturer and every model of ski has a different personality, it's fun to get know and play with all of them. Take some time to find out which general category of ski you prefer (myself, I like twin tips in the 80-to-90 mm width range) and then start having fun.

 

And it's true what oldgoat says about buying skis. It really does make you feel younger!

post #22 of 22
Thread Starter 

Thanks......  Oldgoat and Gimmesnow,

 

I felt 10 years younger too last season when I realized what I had been missing for many years; Jumping headwalls again (Of course responsibly in control and cleared for launch) !   

 

While I do agree with the advice above that demo-ing is a good idea....  I've bought before without demo-ing too... after doing lots of research and just learned how to ski what I've bought.  That was a long time ago, now though, and that's why I'm on Epic..... starting research again.

 

Here's what I've decided: 

I will have at least a two ski quiver.  (Four, if I'm allowed to count my old skinnies; Head 195s and Olins 185s.  I suspect that my skinny skis will be used in some future furniture piece of mine!)

 

One groomer setup, which I believe is going to be the blizzard 8.7 Mag IQ in 181cm.

Another setup for backcountry use.  I've bought the boots (BlackDiamond Prime) and will be meeting with the boot fitter before snow flies again (we still have +/- 80" of snow on Red Mountain Pass here!!  Wolf Creek still has 70+".).   I still haven't made a decision on what backcountry ski I'm going to buy.   Would really like it to be the Blizzard Titan Argos, but they're heavy.  The Black Diamond line of bc skis are much lighter.   Haven't made up my mind on this..   so will demo fatties (90s to 110s)  to determine what I like best.

 

Since the BD Prime boots do not have interchangeable sole plates for alpine use, I either have to decide to use a Freeride/touring binding ..   or buy another boot.  I haven't started to study all the different possibilities there....  yet.

 

Bindings:   For the bc setup looking at the (let's see if I can spell this) Fritschie Freeride Pro or the Eagle.   Both do not get raving reviews and several stated that they broke the toe piece.  The Marker Duke and Barron are much heavier, though they seem to be bomb proof (reviewers comments).  Dynafit... hmmmmm...   very light, expensive, and wierd looking.   If I were to buy both Blizzard IQ skis, I could probably use Marker Barrons on both setups...  switching the binding from one to the other.    Rambling thoughts here.

 

That's were I am on this project!    

 

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Old skier with old gear looking to update