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Beginner looking for first pair of skis

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hey guys im pretty much new to this I ski'd last year a couple of times as well as about twice a year from ages 8-14 currently 22 on rentals only. Im from Michigan and ski mostly at boyne on groomed slopes and once in awhile go in the park. Im looking for my first pair of skis and my friend recommended that I purchase the Nordica dead money 163cm because it is a good reasonibly priced ski for a beginner for all mountain conditions. I am 5'11 and 173lbs if that helps and I appreciate and help/advice.
post #2 of 19

Welcome to EpicSki!

 

The Dead Money is a fine ski.  If you're looking for a ski that is park bias, then you're on the right track.  If you want to invest in a sincere all mountain ski that is 'okay' in the park then there are better options.   

 

You are close enough to Nubs Nob.  You may consider going there to do some demo'ing.  When I lived in Michigan, Boyne had a good demo selection but Nubs had an exceptional demo fleet. 

post #3 of 19

 Thats quite short for your height/weight, nothing inherently wrong with that if it's what you like but as a rockered twin tip you would usually add a little length rather than subtract it. Also this is marketed as an expert level ski which sounds like more than you are after at this moment in time.

 Try looking at the K2 PRESS, in at least the 169, anything shorter your risking your weight being too much for the ski, don't forget in the park you generate greater force than straightlining down the mountain. This ski is at home in the park but will serve you well on groomers and has holes tip and tail to fit skins when you progress to back country.

 There are a lot of other suitable skis out there but you appear to be wanting the budget pricing if you can , unmounted this is available in the under $300 price point.

post #4 of 19

Welcome!  What is your plan for boots?

post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
We have a smaller ski shop in the saginaw bay area where I live that hold pretty good sales after thanksgiving so I plan on going there and asking but my one friend suggested nordica transfire t3.
post #6 of 19

 You really would be better off with a fitter rather than a seller.

  If your boots don't fit you will be wasting any money on skis.

 

  "buy nice or buy TWICE"

 

  If you have nice average feet and are lucky you may be able to get cheap sale boots or more likely you will sacrifice fit for comfort and find yourself buying boots again very soon because they don't work for you.. Have a look on the boot guy forum there is some good advice on there about how/where to find a fitter/boots that work for you.

post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by The New Guy View Post

We have a smaller ski shop in the saginaw bay area where I live that hold pretty good sales after thanksgiving so I plan on going there and asking but my one friend suggested nordica transfire t3.

If the shop is relatively close by, I suggest you stop by and see what they have well before the sale starts.  If the shop has been around for a while and only sells ski stuff, then they may be able to help.  Ask lots of questions.  Decide beforehand that you are NOT buying that day.  Even if you end up changing your mind later.  There is much to learn when it comes to buying your first pair of ski boots.  Before you start shopping, be good to read this:

 

http://www.epicski.com/a/ski-boots-the-most-important-piece-of-gear-you-will-own

 

There are other articles in that section that are well worth looking at too.  Keep in mind the saying "you marry your boots but only date skis."

post #8 of 19

By the way, it's a good idea to consider setting aside some money for a lesson or two.  Sounds like you have enough experience to make good progress and hopefully avoid picking up some bad habits.

post #9 of 19
Thread Starter 
Well i played hockey at a collegiate level and sking is very similar to skating. Also i was told to get my boots to fit like skates.
post #10 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by The New Guy View Post

Well i played hockey at a collegiate level and sking is very similar to skating. Also i was told to get my boots to fit like skates.

Certainly easier to learn to ski with an ice skating background.  But I don't think of the process of boot fitting for ski boots as having much in common with finding the right skates.  Are you getting advice from someone who has worked with a professional ski boot fitter?  Not just someone who sells boots, but someone who has had special training on how to find the right ski boot to start with and then make any necessary adjustments during the sale or after the boots are used for a bit.

post #11 of 19

Welcome to  Epic.  Go to the "Ask the Boot Guys" forum and read the wiki about "what boot will fit my feet."  I may not have the title correct but you'll see the one I mean.  Then check the "Who's Who" for a boot fitter near you.  Call and make an appointment with one.  If you buy boots from some store where they ask for your shoe size and then bring out a pair of boot and say "try these on,"  you need to leave immediately because the boots will be too big, guaranteed.  If they don't do a shell fit, they don't know what they're doing and you should not allow them to practice on you.  Boots are way more important than skis.  Boots are the interface between you and the ski, they transmit your intentions to the ski.  If you boots don't fit properly, your feet will hurt, get cold and you will be miserable.  Then next season you'll buy another pair in hopes of solving the problem.  Do it right the first time and you won't need to replace them for several years.

post #12 of 19

Note that the boot fitter wiki is geared more for people who already own a ski boot and want to ask for help making it right.

 

When trying on boots, be prepared to spend some time.  If you find a good fit, it's best to stand around in them for a while.  It's not like buying shoes where you take a walk down the aisle and then make a decision.

post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by The New Guy View Post

Well i played hockey at a collegiate level and sking is very similar to skating. Also i was told to get my boots to fit like skates.

I have a friend who also played hockey and he picked up skiing really easy.  I can definitely see where you're coming from. 

 

That being said, I think you're on the right track and hope you find a good boot guy to get you the fit in a ski boot that you are accustomed to in your skates.  

 

The only thing I'd caution you on is as lilywhite said, go longer on your skis.  I'd say something between 170-180 depending on the shape and tip profile of the ski. 

 

I've tagged a few things on the side of this page so you can look at a few options and be prepared when you go shopping. 

post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post

...  But I don't think of the process of boot fitting for ski boots as having much in common with finding the right skates. ...

Actually there is considerable commonality between the process of custom fitting high performance skates and ski boots. Custom fit skates predate custom fit ski boots by many years. The principle of transfering energy from foot to edges is the same.  The language, the tools and principles applied are largely shared. Anyone who's experienced both processes would immediately recognize the simililarity. While I wouldn't rush to the skate fitter to fit my boots, a knowledgeable skater will recognize much that is familiar, including the basic fit. In fact a good skate fitter would add much greater value to the process than someone who simply sells ski boots.

post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by marznc View Post
When trying on boots, be prepared to spend some time.  If you find a good fit, it's best to stand around in them for a while.  It's not like buying shoes where you take a walk down the aisle and then make a decision.

 

I just bought a new pair of boots. I drove 2 hours to get to this place, because of a misprint I got there an hour before closing, It was slow so both boot fitters worked on me and I was still there for 2.5 hours.

 

When I sat down, I described what my skill level/experience was, what type of skiing do I do, what I was looking for the boot to do, and anything specific that might help them make a better selection of boots, ie weak ankles so maybe a stiffer boot, and finally what the top of my budget was. They pulled out 6 different boots try on, iirc, all different boot makers, pretty much following the process mtcyclist described,

 

You definitely need to take your time when selecting and getting fitted for boots.

 

Good luck in your quest for new boots.


Edited by voelfgar - 10/29/12 at 12:38pm
post #16 of 19

As others have said, focus on the boots first.  They're the most important piece of gear.

 

 

As for skis, pretty much any modern carving ski will work pretty well at Boyne - you don't need a 100m waist or rocker to negotiate Hemlock.  And since you're just starting out, I'd recommend either renting skis for a while, or just buying a pair of used beaters to use until you've developed enough technique to appreciate the difference between skis.

 

What you're looking for it the following:

 

Length:  165-175 cm

Waist width: 65 to 75mm

Nominal turn radius: 15 to 16 meter

Look for a ski that's designed for "aspiring intermediates" or some similar euphamism. 

 

Find a used pair at a swap or at Play it Again Sports, ski on them for a season, and you can probably sell them a year from now for about what you paid for them.  Then when you actually know how to ski you can demo performance "advanced" skis and see what you like.

post #17 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by FlashGordon View Post

Actually there is considerable commonality between the process of custom fitting high performance skates and ski boots. Custom fit skates predate custom fit ski boots by many years. The principle of transfering energy from foot to edges is the same.  The language, the tools and principles applied are largely shared. Anyone who's experienced both processes would immediately recognize the simililarity. While I wouldn't rush to the skate fitter to fit my boots, a knowledgeable skater will recognize much that is familiar, including the basic fit. In fact a good skate fitter would add much greater value to the process than someone who simply sells ski boots.

Good to know.  Always something new to learn.  Thanks!

post #18 of 19
I have been using Nordica N Series rear entry boots for a long time. I have a lot of arthritis in my spine, preventing me from buckling front entry boots. So, I constantly search eBay, looking for N Series rear entry boots. The N995 & N975 are my favorites. I wish I could wear the newer technology, but can only get a rear entry boot on! If Nordica has a new rear entry boot, I'd love to hear about it. I am an instructor with the Adaptive Ski Program in Santa Fe, NM!
post #19 of 19

Definitely agree with Walt up there. You should go with renting Skis until you feel comfortable enough that you can tell the difference between Skis. A lot of beginners will buy Skis and then they end up in the corner of a garage. 

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