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Considering Buying Season Pass and Skis

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone,

 

So I am a brand new member at Epic Ski, and I am really excited to be here. I have been skiing for about 10 years, but I do not go very often (we live in Jersey and we normally go to Colorado, and we have not been able to due to the economy). A friend recently offered me and a few other guys to buy ski passes with him as it would cost less if we bundled it. I am very interested in skiing again, but if I go a lot I know that it would be more economically friendly for me to just buy my own gear. 

 

Trouble is, I know nothing about actually purchasing skis and boots. (Well, I know a little, but it isn't extremely helpful).

 

Basically I was wondering if someone could help lead me in the right direction as far as purchasing skis, bindings, and boots. I was hoping to get all three for under $350 (I know I'm cheap), but I just don't know exactly what I am looking for. 

 

On a scale of 1-10 as far as skill goes I am a 4-6. I weigh 180 and I am around 5'7-5'8.

 

Thank you so much for your help guys.

post #2 of 24

Spend most of your money on good boots fitted by a professional... then find whatever deal you can on some used skis.  Chances are you'll need to spend a little more than $350 total however.

post #3 of 24

I agree with JayT, money spent on boots is a priority.  You may find good deals here on the Epicski Gear Swap.  Most members are selling pretty good quality stuff and they can talk to you about what might work.  Our sponsors on the site can offer very good deals and advice, but new gear would bust your budget pretty quickly.

 

Get the pass and then you'll be motivated to deal with the equipment.

post #4 of 24

It is the season for ski swaps for another few weeks. DON'T buy your boots at a swap. You don't know what you need and would probably buy the wrong boot and buy it too big. Buy some cheap skis and poles if you can, probably something around 170 give or take a bit. You will probably be spending almost all of your 350 on boots, so if your budget is a real constraint all of your savings have to be on skis.

post #5 of 24

If your only goal is to save money, and you're willing to make do with rental-quality equipment, consider a season rental at a local ski shop.  Some will let you swap equipment mid-season if you need a different size.

post #6 of 24
Thread Starter 

Thanks for all of your responses.

 

I agree that boots are the most important piece of equipment in my personal experience. I'll be looking around the swap to see if anyone has any good deals for $170 or so. I will also check with my local shops to see if they have any older ski boots that they could sell cheap. Does anyone know what size skis or what kind I should be looking for? Same with boots. Thanks!

post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 

Ok, I have a local shop that has some cheap boots (150) in a size 29.5, which I found out is equivalent to a mens 11.5. Now I just need to find ski's and bindings. 

 

I don't really know the conditions of the mountain, but if they are  anything like the other mountains in the east, then its icy as h***. Just gotta find those. Thanks guys!

post #8 of 24

size 11.5, should be in 27.5 or 28.5 max. 29.5 is too big. Go to a good shop that fits you right, otherwise you will be buying boots again.

 

</end rave>

post #9 of 24

It's time to do a bunch of searching, both here and on the internet at large.  There's a lot of good wisdom out there and you'll benefit from it.  Do a search for "shell fit".  Note that most people err on the too-large side when buying boots.  Try skis that come up to your chin, width in the 75-85mm range (or around there).

 

I'm no expert, but you need advice and I thought I'd send you some.  I'm happy if others want to improve my advice.

post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by shoal007 View Post

size 11.5, should be in 27.5 or 28.5 max. 29.5 is too big. Go to a good shop that fits you right, otherwise you will be buying boots again.

 

</end rave>



Alright, thanks. I'll keep that in mind when I go. I found a shop that does seasonal rentals starting at 150. Is that a good deal or should I just go buy my own equipment?

post #11 of 24

You should get an upgraded package, but you will certainly spend more buying your own, and if you do some homework, you'll probably get a better quality package.  Advantage to rentals is, if it isn't working out, you can make exchanges.  The disadvantage is, that the low-end rentals, you get what you pay for.

post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirquerider View Post

You should get an upgraded package, but you will certainly spend more buying your own, and if you do some homework, you'll probably get a better quality package.  Advantage to rentals is, if it isn't working out, you can make exchanges.  The disadvantage is, that the low-end rentals, you get what you pay for.



Alright, I'll keep that in mind.

 

Thank you so much everyone. I really appreciate all of your guys's help.

post #13 of 24

Do not rely on the mondo sizing chart or there's a really good chance you'll get boots that are too large.  To give you some perspective, I'm a size 10 street shoe, which makes me a size 28 on the mondo chart.  My new ski boots are size 25.5.  Granted, Lange RX 130 shells tend to run long on the inside from what I understand, but that's still a huge difference.  The other boots I was trying on were size 26, still a full 2 sizes smaller than mondo.

post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

Do not rely on the mondo sizing chart or there's a really good chance you'll get boots that are too large.  To give you some perspective, I'm a size 10 street shoe, which makes me a size 28 on the mondo chart.  My new ski boots are size 25.5.  Granted, Lange RX 130 shells tend to run long on the inside from what I understand, but that's still a huge difference.  The other boots I was trying on were size 26, still a full 2 sizes smaller than mondo.



 

eek.gifeek.gif

 

I wear a size 8 street shoe and I am in 25.5....I was in 24.5 flexon years ago and it was agony.   24.5 can work for length but I have really short toes so the widest part of my d width foot is way to far forward to fit in 24.5 in most boots.

post #15 of 24

Buying boots based on price is a REALLY bad idea.  Take it from me, been there and done that way too many times.  I went through a period where I was buying new boots at least every other season and I wasn't skiing enough to wear them out.  Boots need to fit in three dimensions; length, width and volume.  If you go into a ski store and they ask what your street shoe size is, you should immediately leave because they don't know anything about how boots are supposed to fit.  Go to the "Ask the Boot Guys" forum and read the wikis about fitting and also check the list of boot fitters to see if there is one in your area.  You need to deal with an experienced boot fitter to get a proper fit.  Get properly fitted boots and then do a season rental for the skis.

post #16 of 24

Where are you getting the season pass at?

post #17 of 24

Hope no one minds if I hitch a ride on this thread instead of starting my own. The topic seems to fit, and I hope my boots do too.

Last spring, when I decided to buy a pass and get my own gear, I found some boots for $8 at the Salvation Army thrift shop. I'm wearing them right now, trying to get an idea of whether I can wear them all day without undue suffering. So far, the comfort seems OK, but I'm a complete beginner, so I'm not sure what else I should be concerned about. They are Dolomite V-82 boots, obviously not new but not badly worn at all. They're not easy to get into (I have high insteps and arches), but they seem fine once I'm in. My toes touch the ends, but doing up the buckles pulls them back just far enough to provide a bit of wiggle room. They're snug laterally, but not uncomfortably so, and I can lean forward until the heels of the boots are off the floor without my heels moving inside the boots. Does this sound OK, at least for a beginner?

post #18 of 24

Slipshod, read mtcyclist's post two above yours...

post #19 of 24

As said above, the Bootfitter forum is a great resource here.   Slipshod, your fit sounds decent as far as you describe it, but most of the time a "shell fit" tells more.  This is shell-fit from the definitions linked at the top of the Ask the Boot Guys Forum:

 

 

Quote:
A shell-fit is when the technician removes the boot liner and has the customer place their foot in the shell and slide it forward until the toes begin to touch. Then the technician will shine a light to observe the clearance to the spine of the shell or slide his hand down the back and see how much room is behind the heel.  There should be enough space there to fit 1 to 2 fingers. This is the best way to determine if the boot is the right length for you.  A performance fit is 5 to 10 mm (one finger width), a recreational fit is up to 25 mm (2.5 cm).  Shell fit is also useful for determining lateral and instep clearances and marking where corrections need to be made to the shell. This may be done with the footbed on the bootboard.  Shell Fitting is important because ultimately all liners compact and it is common to purchase a boot too large based on trying the boot with the liner.  Liners may be short-lasted or not conform to the shell fit as they will after several days of skiing.

 

post #20 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayT View Post

Slipshod, read mtcyclist's post two above yours...

Oh, I did. That's why I posted here. My guess is that the bases should be covered, but I don't know whether those are all -- or any -- of the relevant criteria for proper fit. I have a feeling that the boot experts will just want me to visit a shop, pay a lot, and get fitted for new boots. I'm willing to do that if need be, but I'd surely rather not.
 

 

post #21 of 24

The question you're asking cannot be answered by any of us.  It is not unlike asking for medical advise on an internet forum.  We cannot see the boots and we cannot see your feet, so we can't make a judgement about whether we think the boots will work for you or not.  Your feet will let you know pretty quickly once you actually start using them for skiing. One thing we can tell you is that you should wear no more than one thin pair of socks.  Heavy socks or more than one pair of thin socks are both bad ideas and will not keep your feet warm.  And nothing inside the boot except your foot and the sock.

post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

The question you're asking cannot be answered by any of us.  It is not unlike asking for medical advise on an internet forum.  We cannot see the boots and we cannot see your feet, so we can't make a judgement about whether we think the boots will work for you or not.  Your feet will let you know pretty quickly once you actually start using them for skiing. One thing we can tell you is that you should wear no more than one thin pair of socks.  Heavy socks or more than one pair of thin socks are both bad ideas and will not keep your feet warm.  And nothing inside the boot except your foot and the sock.


Thank you for the tip on socks, mtcyclist. I wasn't really hoping for a definitive answer on my boots, my feet and their relationship and interaction, just wondering if I was on the right track. I'm thinking they'll probably work, although I won't know 'til I hit the snow. I'm pretty clueless about canting, alignment and whatever you call the angle of forward lean.

(Your advice on socks is encouraging. I was a bit concerned because the boots feel fine, but only with a single pair of thin merino hiking socks. Turns out that's a good thing.)

Thanks for your help.

post #23 of 24

Canting and alignment are things that most beginning and intermediate skiers are not aware of, and you are correct that you pay a pretty high dollar for those evaluations and modifications.  You can be poorly aligned, and still ski, it's just that you will subconsciously compensate for any alignment flaws, and this may detract from your performance and endurance.  Being naturally balanced and aligned is a great advantage, but you won't know how much of an advantage it is until you actually do it. It is clearly not part of your budget, so don't worry about it.

 

Boot fitting is really what we're talking about here.  Very simply getting the right volume, size and shape.  Getting a boot that fits is key.  That boot fit can be inexpensively modified by grinding, punching, padding and other modifications to fine-tune it so it fits closely and gives good contact, without pressure-points.  A good fit is the first step to performance.  Good fit does not cost, it saves money, because the boot that doesn't fit is useless, and if too large or the wrong shape, will need to be replaced.  You can buy a pair of boots and focus on getting a good fit.  You can take that good fitting boot and get aligned later when you have more expendable income.  I didn't have boots aligned until about 3-years ago, and I started skiing in the 70s.  The considerable investment in supportive footbeds and corrective cant-angles ground into the soles was something I felt was worthwhile, but for heaven's sake, I thought I was skiing reasonably well back when I wore merely good-fitting gear...I just worked harder without alignment.

 

Do the best you can within your means, and let skiing be fun.  Eventually, improvement, skill and knowledge of the gear will create an itch to upgrade.   For now, you seem to be on a good path.  Just give your self the best chance at succeeding by having appropriate and decent fitting stuff.

post #24 of 24

i moved to CO last year and got a season rental for $120 at a sport shop - co ski and golf. i actually own the boots/skis and they will give me $60 when i turn them back in.  this worked great b/c i got to see the terrain and learn more about equipment.  also if i had any problems they would perform maintenance /re-fit boots etc.for minimal cost;  can't beat $60 for a season!!!  lots of fun shredding steep terrain and deep pow on narrow short rentals..haha. a season i will always remember.

 

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