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Are my skis way too short?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hi,

Last year I bought an pair of 161 Armada AR7 2012 for a ski that would do on piste and would cater for me while I learn freestyle. I initially bought them because I liked the look of them, did some research and was in a rush and the 161 was the only one I could find for sale in the UK. As a UK resident I only ski 2 times a year on a mountain and so can't really afford a new pair. I myself am around 6 foot weigh 176lbs and am 16, I'm an advanced, experienced skier but not a true expert, I can cover almost all terrain with moguls being my weakness. I would just like to know if my skis, at 161, are way too short and I should buy a new pair or are they on the boundary for piste and freestyle skiing. Admittedly I would like to take them off piste but even I know I think they would be too short for that.

Many thanks,

Harry
post #2 of 14

You'll find a longer ski will be more stable in the air.  At your size you should be on something in the high 170s- low 180s.

post #3 of 14

Too short for anything other than a snowdome.

post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by crgildart View Post

You'll find a longer ski will be more stable in the air.  At your size you should be on something in the high 170s- low 180s.

I'm looking at K2 sights as they seem to be all mountain with a bit of park thrown in there which seems perfect for me these days. However, they only come in 169s and 179 and I was wondering which i should get? You said high 170s and low 180s but I am 181 or so CMs so that seems to me to be way too high? It means it will almost be over my head and surely the 169s will be better as it the skis will hit around my nose?

 

Many thanks,

 

Harrys

post #5 of 14
I'm going to say, since you have to ask the answer is no. But you will have to accept that here at Epic Ski that's not going to be a very popular answer.

Epic Ski is filled (at least of the people that post here the most) with racers, ex-racers, and skiing experts of all stripes. They will almost habitually recommend the longest ski a skier can use, on the idea that if it's even a possibility that once every few seasons you might get the chance to ski 70 miles an hour down an empty trail it's worth lugging the ski around unnecessarily the rest of the time, will little or no concern as to whether or not the skier has the skill, or even the interest in racing down an empty slope.

My advise is going to be, use the shortest ski you can that does what you want to do. It sounds like you are not having a problem with your ski. So keep it... don't worry about if your ski length is "fashionable".

Here's why I am starting to think this...

I'm recovering from an injury, and have gone from a Rossi Bandit B2 @ 182 to a Salomon Lord @ 161, and I'm loving it. I have not yet found a down side to them. They are lighter, easier to ski, easier to maneuver, easier to transport... the list just goes on and on.

Now mind you, I ski in the South East U.S., so my primary concerns are speed control so I don't run down people on insanely crowded slopes, ability to make quick turns so I don't run down people on insanely crowded slopes, ability to make quick stops so I don't run down people on insanely crowded slopes, and ability to ski in man made snow, ability to ski in frozen man made snow, ability to ski in slushy man made snow, ability to ski in man made crud, etc. Your conditions may vary.

I think part of this is because years ago when I started on straight skis, when you turned you put most of your weight on the outside leg, and the inside leg's job was to keep you up is the outside ski cut out. so if you were on a pair of 210s, you really were only using 210 or so worth of edge in a turn.

With theses new skis you weight both legs more or less equal. So if you are on a pair of 161s, you are using 322 of edge in a turn... 112 more edge than if you had an old pair of 210s.

Just for reference, I'm 5'10" and around 270lbs, and pretty strong.

ed91e16aff0fdc5b56ff24cb6aea2bce0_l.jpg

I have not had a problem with "over powering" my skis.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sofort99 View Post

I'm going to say, since you have to ask the answer is no. But you will have to accept that here at Epic Ski that's not going to be a very popular answer.
Epic Ski is filled (at least of the people that post here the most) with racers, ex-racers, and skiing experts of all stripes. They will almost habitually recommend the longest ski a skier can use, on the idea that if it's even a possibility that once every few seasons you might get the chance to ski 70 miles an hour down an empty trail it's worth lugging the ski around unnecessarily the rest of the time, will little or no concern as to whether or not the skier has the skill, or even the interest in racing down an empty slope.
My advise is going to be, use the shortest ski you can that does what you want to do. It sounds like you are not having a problem with your ski. So keep it... don't worry about if your ski length is "fashionable".
Here's why I am starting to think this...
I'm recovering from an injury, and have gone from a Rossi Bandit B2 @ 182 to a Salomon Lord @ 161, and I'm loving it. I have not yet found a down side to them. They are lighter, easier to ski, easier to maneuver, easier to transport... the list just goes on and on.
Now mind you, I ski in the South East U.S., so my primary concerns are speed control so I don't run down people on insanely crowded slopes, ability to make quick turns so I don't run down people on insanely crowded slopes, ability to make quick stops so I don't run down people on insanely crowded slopes, and ability to ski in man made snow, ability to ski in frozen man made snow, ability to ski in slushy man made snow, ability to ski in man made crud, etc. Your conditions may vary.
I think part of this is because years ago when I started on straight skis, when you turned you put most of your weight on the outside leg, and the inside leg's job was to keep you up is the outside ski cut out. so if you were on a pair of 210s, you really were only using 210 or so worth of edge in a turn.
With theses new skis you weight both legs more or less equal. So if you are on a pair of 161s, you are using 322 of edge in a turn... 112 more edge than if you had an old pair of 210s.
Just for reference, I'm 5'10" and around 270lbs, and pretty strong.
ed91e16aff0fdc5b56ff24cb6aea2bce0_l.jpg
I have not had a problem with "over powering" my skis.

Thanks very much for this answer! It made me feel much more confident in my current skis, I go out to St Anton on Sunday so I'll see how it goes there, hopefully it will feel just as good as when I last skiied them in feburary, and worst case scenario I rent some longer skis out!

 

Many thanks,

 

Harry

post #7 of 14

Let me put this into perspective.  I'm 5'7-8", 145-150 pounds.  My Volkl carving skis are 163cm.  I bought a pair of 161cm Icelantic Shamans two seasons ago.  The Shamans are 110mm underfoot with no rocker.  I bought that size so I could use them when teaching and also so they would be easy to maneuver in the bumps and trees.  I have never been able to ski anything deeper than maybe 18" inches with them because of nature.  They work OK but I have Marker Griffon Schizo bindings on them and they are set to 1cm behind center.  If I have the binding set at boot center, the only way I can keep the tips from diving in deepish snow is to ski in the backseat. As long as I stay on groomed runs I have no problem with the bindings set at boot center.  But these are not skis for groomers. They are too short for me and I am probably going to sell them and buying a longer powder ski, probably about 170-175cm depending on whether the ski has only tip rocker or tip and tail rocker.  If you only ski groomers, you won't have problems with AR7s at 161cm, but if you take them into powder or into the trees you will problems.  This isn't about somebody's delusion that all of us here want everyone on 200cm skis or even 180cm skis because that is just crap.  Sure, you can ski them just fine on groomers but that is not their intended purpose.  I know a guy who's about 6'2" 220-230 pounds who skis exclusively on 155cm Atomic SL11 skis.  He can carve up a storm on groomed runs but he can't go off the groomers because he will sink immediately.  My daily drive is now a 170cm Nordica Steadfast, but it does have tip rocker so it skis shorter than 170 on the groomers,  My son is 6'0" and his new skis are 178cm with tip rocker.

post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

If you only ski groomers, you won't have problems with AR7s at 161cm, but if you take them into powder or into the trees you will problems.  This isn't about somebody's delusion that all of us here want everyone on 200cm skis or even 180cm skis because that is just crap.  Sure, you can ski them just fine on groomers but that is not their intended purpose.

I'm glad to see there are others that agree with me. smile.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vulcan0 View Post

I would just like to know if my skis, at 161, are way too short and I should buy a new pair or are they on the boundary for piste and freestyle skiing. Admittedly I would like to take them off piste but even I know I think they would be too short for that.
post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

Let me put this into perspective. 

 

I think that the OP is going to spend (a week?) in St. Anton is also highly relevant to the discussion.

post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by sofort99 View Post

I'm glad to see there are others that agree with me. smile.gif

 

Barely.  They will probably work OK on groomers but if he goes off-piste they will not.

post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vulcan0 View Post

I would just like to know if my skis, at 161, are way too short and I should buy a new pair or are they on the boundary for piste and freestyle skiing. Admittedly I would like to take them off piste but even I know I think they would be too short for that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sofort99 View Post

I'm going to say, since you have to ask the answer is no. But you will have to accept that here at Epic Ski that's not going to be a very popular answer...

My advise is going to be, use the shortest ski you can that does what you want to do. It sounds like you are not having a problem with your ski. So keep it... don't worry about if your ski length is "fashionable".
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

If you only ski groomers, you won't have problems with AR7s at 161cm, but if you take them into powder or into the trees you will problems.  This isn't about somebody's delusion that all of us here want everyone on 200cm skis or even 180cm skis because that is just crap.  Sure, you can ski them just fine on groomers but that is not their intended purpose.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sofort99 View Post

I'm glad to see there are others that agree with me. smile.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

Barely.  They will probably work OK on groomers but if he goes off-piste they will not.

roflmao.gif
post #12 of 14

Well I have to agree with the short ski crowd.  I am 5'11'' and weigh 160.  I ski on a 158 atomic D2 Varioflex 82 mm underfoot.  I rarely ski on groomed.  The skis work fine on moguls, trees and crud and on powder up to about 15 inches.    I have no problem with stability even at speed (as tracked by 'skitracks") and have no issues in keeping up with the local level 4 ski pros.  Longer skis would be more stable when you go from smooth and hit crud etc.  I have skiied on skis up to 190cm in length - better in some situations but generally I prefer a shorter ski.  I was recently at a clinic of level 4 ski instructors - surprisingly few had long skis.  Most were around 170, some were 160 and I only saw one at 178.  Nothing longer. and some of these guys were pretty big.

Confession - I have recently purchased a longer ski - 171 and 88 under foot but this is more for the heavy crud and powder - I haven't tried it out yet but have had second thoughts thinking I maybe should have ordered the 165.

 

I think if you are a developing skier, you are better to develop your skills on the shorter ski then go longer.  It is much harder IMHO to go to a longer ski then try to develop your skills. I think that is one reason so many skiers never develop beyond intermediate - that and lack of lessons :-)

post #13 of 14

OP: Just keep in mind that a true twin like the AR7 (which is not a noodle, incidentally), at 161 has a ski blade-like running surface. It's a park ski (duh!) so those nice soft springy tips will be a kick in the park and halfpipe, not as nice as you'd think in bumps (instant fore-aft COM issues if you get out of balance), a mess in aisle 7 where the soft snow lives, and a ticket to the ER if you take real air (figure out how many cm of tail you have to work with if you get backseat, or how easy it is at 6' to overpressure the tips). So yeah, St. Anton may not be an ideal testing ground. Sounds like you'll find out. 

 

More generally, mtcyclist is right IMO, length of any ski all depends on its mission and the driver. On a small hill back here I used to ski Rossi 9S OS's in 158 (I'm 6', 165), total hoot. Of course, one time got north of 30 mph as I hit some stiff crud, friend said tips looked like yo-yo's. And trees or powder or heavy crud, no, don't go there... 

post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 

Thanks to everyone for their opinions and advice, really helped!

 

Many thanks,

 

Harry

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