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Bought New Skis and I Think I Might Have Made The Wrong Decision! What Do You Think?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

Hello,I'm new to the forum here and I am looking to get some real great advice.

 

My back ground. I started skiing at the age of 10 and skied for 12 years taking lessons for 5 years every weekend at the local hill. Before I quit skiing I would consider my abilities of that of a strong intermediate. My skis at the time were Hagan Racing Classic GS 200cm cira 1985 and 190cm Dynamic VR 27 Equipe SL cira 1988. I loved both skis for differnt reasons, the Hagan's were fast and smooth, the Dynamic's were very snappy as long as I paid attention.

 

9 years ago I took up skiing again, but with limited funds I bought all my gear off ebay with out doing much research and relying on the description from the seller. I bought a pair of K2 Escape 3500 which were touted as an intermediate ski by the seller. I bought 174cm and they have an 18m turn radius.I never really liked the skis, and longed for something like VR27's but more forgiving.

 

This year I went to our local ski shop's annual summer warehouse sale. After doing a year's worth of reasearch I has settled on The Salamon Daytona 24, Rossignol 76 Avenger TI or the Head X Shape STX. One on line ski shop recommended the Elan Amphibio Waveflex 12's though after reading a review in Ski Canada and the price of $1200 I decided to pass on the Elan's. So I present my three choices of skis to the sales clerk at the ski shop and the first thing he asked me is do I ski with kids and I answed yes. He advised to stay away from the Rossi's and Salmon's but the Heads would be ok. He than recommended the Blizzard Magnum IQ 7.6  along with the Head's I was considering. Since I mostly ski icy terrain and the majority of my skiing is done at night I figured the 11m turning radius of the Heads would be better than Blizzards 14m turning radius so I bought the Heads. I was concerned because I droped to 163cm on the recommendation of the sales person. When I plug my height, weight,( 5'8" 235lbs) and ability into any ski calculator from any site I get a length of 170cm to 175cm. To make matters worse I have found nothing but glowing reviews for the Blizzard 7.6 IQ and only two review's of the Heads both from Europe, but both very positive.Both the Blizzards and the Heads were the same price $499.

 

So in your humble opinions, did I make a wrong decision? I really want to enjoy skiing more so than I have in the past 9 years. I'm looking for a snappy ski that can be skied at a relaxed pace if need be, that has great ice holding capabities.

 

What would you recommend, and should I sell my skis to get something different.

 

 

 

Thanks


Edited by EasternCanadian - 9/1/12 at 8:40pm
post #2 of 17
Welcome to epic. You don't give info on your height/weight which would help frame it but I will l hazard a guess. I am not familiar with the head stx but it sounds like a non race stock/consumer slalom ski. At 11m , while entertaiining for a short while on a small hill, you could find it becomes a bit one-dimensional. It does depend on what you are using it for. If just to shepherd you kids it may work. The blizzard in a 174 or similar will give you more options as an all round ski. The difference between 11 and 14 radius will not make a huge difference in easy turning but the 11 will definitely wear you out quicker . For comparison most true race stock slaloms are 13 -13.5m radius in a 165
post #3 of 17

Having just switched from straight skis last season (after 45yrs on the things) here is my 2 cents.

 

1.  You skied both a GS race ski and an SL race ski.

2.  You skied long skis as an intermediate (per your definition) I would suspect you might be better than you think (once you figure out the slight change in technique required for the shaped skis)

3.  You clearly define what you like and dislike (hence comment #2)

4.  Heads are more of a recreational SL cut, and the Blizzards more of recreational GS cut.  As to recreational racer type skis they are likely more than enough ski to match what you want in either ski.  High enough performance to please, low enough not to be difficult (unless of course is is what you enjoy)

5.  You might find the 163 a little short until you adapt but the reduction in swing wt is just amazing and feel natural quickly for a SL ski.

 

 

To be fair I'm on a FIS GS ski (in the shorter than FIS length for men) and love it.  I like the longer turning radius and have to work (like old straight skis) to get the shorter turns.  Either way they suit me (sensitive and demanding to be perfect or else).   It took me about 16 to 24hrs of solid ski time to adjust technique to the shorter and more responsive length.

 

I'm sure that you'll get some fairly good comments from some of the members on this site as to the actual skis ability and performance.  I can't comment fairly as I haven't skied them.

 

Go out and enjoy.

 

G

post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the quick reply ScotsSkier. I bought a seasons's pass this year that's good from 3pm until closing 7days a week on a really small hill 394 verticle feet. The hill is facing North West and the snow gets blown off the hill fairly quickly on windy days. Conditions are  fairliy icy on most days. My kids are 9 and 12. I ski at a pretty good clip with the 9 year old but the 12 year old is fairly timid. I would say I would ski 60% at a medium to fast rate and 40% at a slower rate with the 12 year old often having him follow me and trying to imate my moves like an instructor would. Both kids are in lessons which will allow me time to free ski. I prefer short radius turns when free skiing. I'm 5ft 8 inches and 235lbs.

post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks OldSchoolSkier. I have been skiing on shaped skies for 9 years now, in those 9 years I have avereaged 5 to 10 skiing days a year (Not much I know) but just bought a seasons pass today so planning on a min of 30 days to get my money's worth. I also plan on taking a private lesson or two as I haven't taken lessons since i was a teen (now 41) as I have not changed my technic since my lesson years(straight skis). I just found the K2 Escape 3500 so unresponsive and lacking edge hold compaired to my Hagan's and Dynamic's. Most likly my technic is the culprit more than the skis, but I'm hoping new skis, boots, season pass, and a few lessons, will be the answer to a blissful season.

post #6 of 17

The STX will be a great ski for you. Work on tipping it on edge to turn rather than twisting and it will respond.

post #7 of 17

No need for buyer's regret.  With a season pass, you may fine you want more than one ski / turn radius/ length.  Take what this ski offers, and consider getting something that allows better soft-snow performance and longer turn radius when it's convenient and affordable.  The Gear Swap on Epicski is a great place to save some money on good equipment, and the reviews should point you to what will diversify your equipment choice.

post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks stevesmith7 and Cirquerider. I have a bad habit of researching things before I purchase and than even more so after the purchase and than questioning my purchase. I just really hate making mistakes (Lame I know). This is the first year in the last 5 that I didn't have to buy one of my kids new equipment, so I splurged on myself, so I think it will be a while before I can purchase another set of skis. But you posts are reasuring. Now I need new boots, so I'll start researching that.

 

Thanks everyone.

post #9 of 17

Ski them and enjoy them.  The Head is a good ski.  If you don't think they the answer to all of your desires, you have 2 sons that will grow into them pretty soon.  They will be good for skiing with your kids on your local hill, and probably help make you a better skier.  Date your skis, but marry your boots.

post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks Stranger, I have every intention of marrying my boots. In my whole life I have had only 1 pair of boots that I liked which were my Raichle Flexon Comp's, which I believe Full Tilt bought their molds. My current Nordica SX's are too big by a half size. I bought them at a big box sporting goods store. I will post boot specific question in a new post.

post #11 of 17

The skis sound very appropriate. If you have a little extra $ left over after upgrading your boots you might hit the ski swap in Ottawa. I'll bet there will be lots of low milage longer, more GS oriented skis on sale that you could pick up cheap. Based on your previous ski habits you already know two pairs are twice as much fun as one. 

post #12 of 17

Second thoughts and re-evaluation is normal.  When I moved to CO in 2005 to up my game, I wanted that one perfect ski and ended up buying three pairs of all different stiffness and length my first season.  Two of them I brought back to the shop several times tweaking bindings and length.  Funny thing is, the very first pair I bought that I decided after one day of skiing that I hated has become my go-to ski for almost every condition.

post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by EasternCanadian View Post

Thanks for the quick reply ScotsSkier. I bought a seasons's pass this year that's good from 3pm until closing 7days a week on a really small hill 394 verticle feet. The hill is facing North West and the snow gets blown off the hill fairly quickly on windy days. Conditions are  fairliy icy on most days. My kids are 9 and 12. I ski at a pretty good clip with the 9 year old but the 12 year old is fairly timid. I would say I would ski 60% at a medium to fast rate and 40% at a slower rate with the 12 year old often having him follow me and trying to imate my moves like an instructor would. Both kids are in lessons which will allow me time to free ski. I prefer short radius turns when free skiing. I'm 5ft 8 inches and 235lbs.

 

 

Based on that and assuming that your skiing is on a small hill you should be fine with the Head.  With so little vertical the slalom cut will help keep it interesting.  
post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone, for the input. You have all put my mind at ease. I have been reading about skiing all weekend long weather it was on this forum or magazines online. Let's just say I'm getting very excited for the up coming season.

 

Cheers everyone.

post #15 of 17

At 235lbs if the OP were on a big western mountain I would have recommended a longer ski, but for a small hill, making lots of turns, the 163cm will be fine and as suggested, at future hand me down.

 

The OP stated that his current ski boots are a half size too big. There is a 50% chance that this is incorrect. This is because shell and liner sizes are identical and only the foot bed thickness changes between half sizes. Example: a size 27 will have a thicker footbed to take up space and a 27.5 will have a thinner footbed to gain volume. Of course if the OP is in a 27, then a half size smaller shell and liner e.g 26.5 would be the solution. But if the boots are old, the liners may have compacted causing a loose fit.

post #16 of 17

Well, they are short for your weight, but since you want to ski at a relaxed pace they should be fine. Should also have great edge if tuned properly. They'll be very maneuverable with little effort. Watch it at speed, they may get squirrelly. Otherwise have fun on them and go from there on what you may like in the future.

post #17 of 17
Stick with the slalom on small hills. Way more fun! I have lots of skis, but the 163s are no. 1 at the local 300' hill! 174 -sorry passable, but not nearly as enjoyable!!
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