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Is there any value in demo skis that are not the right size...

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I'm having a hard time finding skis on my size to demo... there is tons of skis I'd like to demo but I can't find the right size! The only one I could find and I'm doind a demo next week is the Gunsmoke 179cm. I was looking for something around 115 for resort powder, but everything available for demo is usually on the mid size and I'm pretty much on the sorter side of the size range...


Automatic only 186cm for demo... was looking for 179cm

Influence 115 only 186 for demo... was looking for 179cm

Patron only 185cm for demo... was looking for 177cm


I also found the Rocker2 115 in 178 which might work... but I don't really think the ski has the correct size for me, it might just be too much ski.


But anyway, not really looking for ski advice yet... I'm just trying to figure out if there is any value in demo skis that are a size longer than what you will be getting. Can that drastically change your opinion about the skis? Can you take something from the demo to help you deciding?

post #2 of 8

I've demo'd skis that are up to 10cm longer than optimal for my size.  I always learn something, especially if it's a brand/model that is quite different from my usual preference.  Wouldn't want to make a purchase based on a demo for a longer length.  Note that I experiment a lot more with length on free demo days.

post #3 of 8

i think it's tough because all skis are pretty good, it's down to smaller details that make a big difference.  Getting the "wrong" size ski won't tell you those small details of how the right size ski will perform.  So I would say that you shouldn't use the wrong size ski to make a decision to buy a different size of the same ski.  

However, by chance the "wrong" size ski works perfectly for you, then you maybe pleasantly surprised and you should buy that same "wrong" ski that you actually tried out.

post #4 of 8

Have you skied a substantially rockered soft snow ski before? If not, you might want to try out the longer skis as they might ski shorter than you expect.

post #5 of 8

The Atomic Automatic has substantial tip and tail rocker, try the longer one.  I'm a bit less than 5'8".  My Nordica Steadfasts have only tip rocker and are 170s.  I skied the Atomic Ritual in a 174 and really liked it, but I also skied the Bent Chetler in a 183 and had no problems with it because it has more rocker than the Ritual.  The more rocker there is the longer you can go.

post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 

I currently ski P98 @ 172cm and I was heading towards 180ish not much more than that... I'm gonna try to get some demo done this week and will get back posting some info about what I found...


Thanks all for the input!

post #7 of 8

A demo one size up/down from what you think you want should give you some information, at least about the general 'feel' of the ski.  If you really dislike the demo at the 'wrong' size, it's unlikely that changing the length a few cm will fix it.  If it's pretty good even at the 'wrong' size then it might turn out to be great at the 'right' one.  And you might even find you like the 'wrong' size!


Just very generally speaking, a shorter ski will be easier to turn but less stable at high speed, and a longer ski will be more stable and a bit slower.  And as a couple people mentioned, skis with rocker tend to ski a bit 'shorter' then the advertised length, since you don't have the whole edge engaged all the time like with a fully cambered ski.  (At least on hard snow.)

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 

Think it's about time to come back here and share a little bit about what I've had a chance to demo while looking for my new skis


I've tried a bunch of different skis in the last month or so... most of them in the size I would actually use, and 2 skis that were one size longer Automatic 186 and Moment Governor 186. My demo list included Armada Magic J 180, Blizzard Gunsmoke 179, Line Influence 115 179, Mr Pollard Opus 178, Salomon Quest 115 178 (second chance to demo on a pow day in Alta on the rocker2 115 178) and Atomic Bent Chetler 183.


I ended up setting my mind on the Salomon 115, probably will buy the rocker2 instead of quest 115 because I don't wanna pay more for new graphics and new name :-)


Off all of those the rocker2 115 and the atomic bent chetler were by far the most fun skis I've tried! I would definitely buy the Bent Chetler if I had a chance to ski more deep pow days than I currently can! I found them so easy to just do whatever you want to! Different turn shapes, going fast, slowing down, etc... it's a fun, fun, fun ski! Maybe I will buy one someday! :-)


The rocker2 115 is much more what I'm looking for right now since I wanna be able to ride the ski on more variable conditions, and for a guy at 150lbs like me, I don't feel like I would like a stiffer ski. Rocker2 was better than the Opus, Influence 115 and Automatic (size longer). I first tried the quest 115 last Saturday at the Alta demo day, and I rent the skis on Monday on a pow day, I guess we got about 10", I was skiing some bottomless powder at some spots, sow pow with bumps underneath as well as some more variable conditions on the quest 115 during the demo day and I had no complains!


From my initial question, I really did get some good idea about the Automatic and Governor even though I tried a size longer! I found the tips of the automatic just too soft, didn't quite like how it turns as well. On the other hand I really enjoyed the Governor, but the skis is like a tank! Really stiff ski but even at 150 lbs I was crushing through crud! Really think that riding the governor at 176 would be a nice crud buster! I enjoyed, just not what I was looking for!


Right now, I'm going for the rocker2 115!

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