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Super Fat Skis for A Woman?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

Looking at the 2013 lineup of women-specific powder skis I find nothing wider underfoot than about 113 mm.  In the men's/gender-neutral category they go up to 140 mm or so underfoot.   I'm interested in getting some super-fats for those reeeally deeep days.  I love my Salomon S7W's (140-110-118) in powder, but I'm feeling like maybe fatter would be even more fun.  Or maybe at my size/weight it wouldn't make much difference?  .......  Your thoughts?

 

About me:  5'4", 135 lbs., ski 80+ days/year at Alta/Bird.

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Altanaut View Post

Looking at the 2013 lineup of women-specific powder skis I find nothing wider underfoot than about 113 mm.  In the men's/gender-neutral category they go up to 140 mm or so underfoot.   I'm interested in getting some super-fats for those reeeally deeep days.  I love my Salomon S7W's (140-110-118) in powder, but I'm feeling like maybe fatter would be even more fun.  Or maybe at my size/weight it wouldn't make much difference?  .......  Your thoughts?

 

About me:  5'4", 135 lbs., ski 80+ days/year at Alta/Bird.

 

Thanks!

 

That's what I think ... 

post #3 of 19

 ^^ that. I do like the look of the Nordica La Nina. 113 at the waist, graphics are awful but you wouldn't see them in the powder!

post #4 of 19
Salomon Rockette at 115?
post #5 of 19

Well, I'm a bigger guy - but I know smaller people who use fatter skis. And like them for what you are talking about.

 

My spouse enjoyed skiing on the 180 Rocker 2 last year. Same dimensions as the bigger Rockette (and BTW - this year's 180 Rocker 2 122 is that same ski again I believe -- 115 waist and all). She actually used it as her day to day, and mixed powdery conditions day ski.  For deep days she often used 180 Praxis Powder Boards.

 

As I often seem to, I'd suggest looking at the Praxis lineup - the Protest, Powder Board, etc. come in appropriate sizes. The Powder Board skis relatively short. Keith at Praxis can provide guidance on the line & sizing. The smaller Pon2oon might be a candidate - maybe. Maybe the Armada Magic J or Bubba in shorter sizes... I'm sure a number of others are slipping my mind. Some of these might strike you as big. And yeah - one can get carried away. But on surfy powder or breakable crust day, you might really appreciate going a bit bigger (again, with some sensible limit).

 

Broadly speaking, fatter (and early tapered and rockered) seems better than thinner for deep powder. IMO, that goes even for smaller people.

post #6 of 19
I was looking for the same two years ago.
Here is my conclusion and what I tell the women's who come into my shop.
The properties that make a women's ski a women's ski are much the same as in a super fat ski.
Softer flex and center to rear mount weight distribution

This being true you can go for just about any big fat ski.

I will agree with spindrift. Praxis makes awesome skis and I would highly recommend you take a look at their lineup.
post #7 of 19

Kastle 118

 

But for your size, I wouldn't go much wider than 110--115. You just don't need it. 

post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your thoughts.  I guess there's no consensus on whether extra-fatties would make a significant difference in my case.  The La Nina was already on my "to demo" list.  I'll add the Rockette 115 and will definitely look into Praxis.  I'm surprised, Philpug, that you suggested Kastle's, since I tend to think of them as quite beefy and stiff.  But that's why I asked for help.  I look forward to doing the research this season and will post again if I have any major revelations.
 

post #9 of 19

Obviously I disagree with Phil on this one... wink.gif  I honestly believe many women and smaller guys are short changed in this game. A whole lot of people can benefit from fatter rockered skis under the right conditions.

 

One additional observation is perhaps worth noting. One made by a number of other folks recently. And one you might already be aware of if you ski the S7W. But worth mentioning anyway.  Newer design powder skis have proportions that sometimes make for counter-intuitive behavior. For example, Praxis Powder Boards (and other reverse and near-reverse sidecut skis) have their fattest part underfoot. And some others very much in that neighborhood. It is not like they have a 130 something waist and then a monster tip. The fattest part of the ski, in the case of the current Powder Boards is 138. IIRC, the Lotus 138 "waist" is only a mm or two narrower than the fattest part of the ski - which is pretty close to the middle anyway. The Praxis Protest has a shade more sidecut - but again, depending on size, it is 119 or 128 underfoot and the fattest part of the ski is 130 or 139...  The Armada Bubba has a 122 waist and a 140 "tip" - a bit more shape, but not a dramatic difference (a total of 18mm is all). The Pon2oon has a fatter tip - but the rapid kick keeps it mostly out of the way...

 

All of which leads to much easier handling in softer snow (and even softer groomers) than many expect based on experience with more sidecut skis. The trick is finding well designed, well built skis that'll work well for a smaller skier.

post #10 of 19

My wife is 5'4" and 115 lbs. and really enjoys her 115mm-waisted Line Pandora skis (162cm length). Doesn't take much speed to get her floating right up on top. She has the version with the early rise tip -- I think they make it with early rise in both the tip and tail in later models.

post #11 of 19

AN:

 

I'm sure you meant Rossi S7W rather than Salomon.

 

Can you share some specifics about what you would want a new ski to do better than what you currently have? Also, what length are your Rossi's? Without knowing what your specific complaints are, this is pure speculation but it's possible you might have gotten them too short (169?) FWIW....we sell a heck of a lot of 178's to women your size here in Tahoe.

 

SJ

post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 

Well, duh, yeah I meant Rossi's. redface.gif 

 

My husband (he of the 8-ski quiver) pointed out that I don't have any "deep powder" skis.  (I'm so happy with my S7s that I ski them most days, regardless of conditions.)  It's not that I'm looking for a ski that does something better, as I'm pretty sure my limiting factor is technique rather than equipment.  Increased fun is my holy grail. 

 

But to answer your question:  yes I have the 169s.  This brings up a recurring issue.  I hear of women skiing fatter and longer skis -- like what you said about 178's.  But my hub and a friend who is a level 3 instructor both say that I don't need longer skis.  The instructor uses 150-something skis (she's shorter than me but only by a couple of inches).  Is stability at speed the only thing gained by longer skis?  I'm not the fastest person on the mountain but I don't ski like a granny -- and I haven't hit a speed limit on my S7's.
 

post #13 of 19

I have the 178cm S7, I'm the same ht/wt basically, ski a 166cm in my other skis. The 178cm would, IMO, be easier to to ski in powder. It's not just stability at speed, it's that when you push or press against the snow, it is with more force and more surface area and you get a greater feedback or result. On that ski, a little more fore and aft sweet spot is not bad either. I think only the skier can decide and I say this just as counterpoint to hub and a friend.


Edited by davluri - 10/29/12 at 3:21pm
post #14 of 19

Lots of information here...

 

http://www.epicski.com/a/powder-skis-and-skier-size

 

...coordinating skier size and ski width for float in powder.  This should give you more than just opinions.

post #15 of 19

Disagree. That is an ancient bit of analysis. The objective issues with modern skis and the subjective sensibilities of today are quite different than even 4-5 years ago.

post #16 of 19

There was a thread this summer about weight and width needed for flotation.  Can anybody find it?

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

There was a thread this summer about weight and width needed for flotation.  Can anybody find it?

This thread is from 2003, but maybe you'll find something interesting in what PhysicsMan had to say.

http://www.epicski.com/t/2275/flotation-as-a-function-of-ski-flex-length-and-skier-weight

post #18 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Altanaut View Post

Well, duh, yeah I meant Rossi's. redface.gif 

 

My husband (he of the 8-ski quiver) pointed out that I don't have any "deep powder" skis.  (I'm so happy with my S7s that I ski them most days, regardless of conditions.)  It's not that I'm looking for a ski that does something better, as I'm pretty sure my limiting factor is technique rather than equipment.  Increased fun is my holy grail. 

 

But to answer your question:  yes I have the 169s.  This brings up a recurring issue.  I hear of women skiing fatter and longer skis -- like what you said about 178's.  But my hub and a friend who is a level 3 instructor both say that I don't need longer skis.  The instructor uses 150-something skis (she's shorter than me but only by a couple of inches).  Is stability at speed the only thing gained by longer skis?  I'm not the fastest person on the mountain but I don't ski like a granny -- and I haven't hit a speed limit on my S7's.
 

 

What you will get from longer skis is primarily oriented toward lift in deeper snow and also more fore-aft stability when getting knocked around by rough conditions. A fatter ski will naturally give you more lift but may not give you the stability. In fact, in some conditions, you'd probably get less stability.

 

So............since you seem to really like what you have and can't point out an area you'd like to improve, I'm not sure that a new fatter ski is going to deliver your nirvana. It may, but it may not. OTH, there's nothing wrong with buying a new wider ski as an experiment, you may just find something that that you currently don't even know that you want. Then again.....maybe not.

 

Out of curiosity, does you Hub or the L3 instructor think you need wider skis? or just different skis??. BTW.......I'm sure yours is different but many husbands that are gear heads seem to want their wives to get skis that will do something that they think you want to do but not necessarily what you want to do.

 

IAC.........there's a lot of ~~ 170cm skis available that are wider than what you have. Whether one of them will deliver that as yet undefined epiphany is unknown..............but there's one sure fire way to find out. Buy one and see.

 

SJ

post #19 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

Out of curiosity, does you Hub or the L3 instructor think you need wider skis? or just different skis??. BTW.......

I'm sure yours is different but many husbands that are gear heads seem to want their wives to get skis that will do something that they think you want to do but not necessarily what you want to do.

 

IAC.........there's a lot of ~~ 170cm skis available that are wider than what you have. Whether one of them will deliver that as yet undefined epiphany is unknown..............but there's one sure fire way to find out. Buy one and see.

 

SJ

 

Okay, SierraJim, the Hub is a total gear head and sees a slight deficiency in my quiver.  (Wow, that sounds weird, doesn't it?)  He was simply pointing out that I don't have a pair of super-fat skis like he has.  My instructor friend has never said I need wider skis, just that I don't necessarily need longer skis and could in fact be happy with shorter ones.  And, no, Husband does not try to push his agenda like that.  He knows better!

 

The bottom line here is that I'm going to demo several skis this season, including those suggested in this thread.  Maybe I'll even buy a pair.  Thanks for your input!

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