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Is it my skis or do I just suck that bad? Salomon X-Wing 8

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

I bought a pair of Salomon X-Wing 8s:

 

http://www.skis.com/Salomon-X-Wing-8-Skis-with-Z10-Lightrak-Bindings-2011/200471P,default,pd.html

 

These are my first pair of skis and the ONLY reason I bought them is because they were cheap (the shop was going out of business) and it was labeled as intermediate, so I figured that I could grow into them. I knew nothing of camber, rocker, stiffness, twin tip, width, weight, etc.

 

They are cambered

Waist Width: 70-75mm

Tip/Waist/Tail Widths: 120/75/103mm (@ 168cm)
Tail Profile: Flared
No flex at all.
 
They are amazing for fast steep groomers. They are SO FAST and I love them for it. I *prefer* icy or hard packed groomers. I *dread* powder. I'm 5'5" and they are 160cm.
 
But when I hit the moguls, the trees, the powder, and the terrain park I get my ass handed to me.
 
1. I have a very hard time initiating tight fast turns in them for moguls and trees. They just insist on going straight or in the direction that they're currently pointed, and they don't like to be whipped around. So I tend to overshoot my turns all the time on bumps and trees. I crash a lot.
 
2. They cut into powder like a knife - when I ski powder sometimes I don't ever see the skis - they're torpedoing underneath the snow somewhere, and of course this makes turning almost impossible when I have pounds of snow that I have to lift them out of. And of course the snow grabs me and trips me up since so much of the skis are buried underneath. I crash a lot.
 
3. They are heavy. I can't hop very high in them. Maybe 2 inches. My park friends are able to get like 1.5 feet when they hop in their's.
 
4. Before I knew what twin tips where, I did a day of trying to ski backwards in these. LOL.
 
I skied with someone who had some kind of wider twin tipped skis and he could flex them really well, whip them around for rails and boxes, whip them around even more for moguls half his size, go through the trees just fine, do the powder just fine, and almost keep up with my speed-wise.
 
Be honest. Looking at the ski, and especially if you have these skis yourself, could they be part of the reason why I have SUCH a hard time doing moguls or trees or park? Or is it still mostly my lack of skill?
post #2 of 19

We know nothing about your ability, nor what mogul run you were having trouble with, or if your boots really fit your feet or were meant for someone else's feet.  How long have you been skiing?  How many lessons have you had?  Can you link tight radius parallel turns down a moderately steep groomer without gaining speed?  Can you have someone video you while skiing and then post that?

 

From what you say I would recommend staying out of the trees until you are fully in control and your description sounds like you are mostly out of control.  You do not have to see your skis to ski powder, in fact before fat skis nobody saw their skis in powder that was over about 12" deep.  If you put on your friends' park skis can you jump 1.5 feet in the air?  "No flex at all"  sorry but there are no skis like that.

post #3 of 19
Ahh, FBB - considering the fine "reason" you bought them, and that you are pleased with their performance doing what you "prefer" to do (icy hardpack groomers) - then I'd say just be happy with how this worked out for you. Reading the description in the link you provided it sounds like that's what they are primarily designed for. IMO, the problems that lead to your numbered issues are: 1. turning and mogul skill level 2. not powder skis (camber, 75 waist), but should handle the crud fine if you "drive" them 3. Seriously, the FBBunny can't hop in these?? :) try harder 4. you figured that one out Enjoy them and take some mogul lessons!
post #4 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

We know nothing about your ability, nor what mogul run you were having trouble with, or if your boots really fit your feet or were meant for someone else's feet.  How long have you been skiing?  How many lessons have you had?  Can you link tight radius parallel turns down a moderately steep groomer without gaining speed?  Can you have someone video you while skiing and then post that?

 

From what you say I would recommend staying out of the trees until you are fully in control and your description sounds like you are mostly out of control.  You do not have to see your skis to ski powder, in fact before fat skis nobody saw their skis in powder that was over about 12" deep.  If you put on your friends' park skis can you jump 1.5 feet in the air?  "No flex at all"  sorry but there are no skis like that.

1. I've got about 60 days on the mountain. For the past 40 I'd say I rode exclusively groomed fast black runs in Tahoe (Northstar, Kirkwood).

2. I have a hard time on mostly all mogul runs.

3. I went to a boot fitter to get my boots (Cosmo's in Tahoe)

4. No lessons. They cost a lot at $155 a pop (at Breck anyway)

5. I never link tight turns. Just not the style of skiing that I do.

 

I never had a chance to put on my friend's park skis. 

 

There is "no flex" compared to my friend's park skis. When he leans forward his skis bend so much that he can palm the ground. My skis on the other hand flex maybe an inch.

post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiersLeft View Post

Ahh, FBB - considering the fine "reason" you bought them, and that you are pleased with their performance doing what you "prefer" to do (icy hardpack groomers) - then I'd say just be happy with how this worked out for you. Reading the description in the link you provided it sounds like that's what they are primarily designed for. IMO, the problems that lead to your numbered issues are: 1. turning and mogul skill level 2. not powder skis (camber, 75 waist), but should handle the crud fine if you "drive" them 3. Seriously, the FBBunny can't hop in these?? :) try harder 4. you figured that one out Enjoy them and take some mogul lessons!

That's the thing. I love fast icy hardpack groomers but I also really want to do trees and moguls and powder, but I can't. I bought these skis not even knowing what "piste" means, so obviously there was no purpose other than it was cheap.

 

The reason I ask this question is because those Salomons are rated as 80% piste, 20% off-piste, which I take to mean they're supposed to suck off-piste. Am I going to expect better results by going with a different ski?

post #6 of 19

You know, I see that ski all the time.  I think it's a workhorse in many rental fleets as the Performance ski offering and should be able to do most of the mountain except on a powder day, so it is by no means a bad ski, nor a stiff ski.  A good skier should have no problems with those skis in the terrain you're talking about.

 

Try another type of ski, and see if you like them better.  If your friend has system/demo bindings try switching with him for a couple runs.

Definitely if you get a rockered park-type ski, can make the type of skiing you want to do easier; but really this is a crutch covering your skill gap.  You give up the precision and stability and I'd bet you wouldn't be able to do high speed groomers as well with your friend's skis.

 

It's perfectly fine to use the other skis to start in the other terrain, to be comfortable with the it.  Then after you feel you've mastered it, go back and learn how to do the same with the other skis using different more precision techniques. It's like playing a video game with computer assistance. Then going back and playing without it.


Edited by raytseng - 4/4/13 at 11:03pm
post #7 of 19
I guess at a minimum you should take one dayof renting close to the mountain, in a way you can switch sseveral times a day

it will be fun to test different ski types and lengths. You will satisfy your curiosity and learn a bit for your future purchases
post #8 of 19

I have been skiing on the Salomon x wing 10 for about 4 years. I don't find them all that fast compared to the longer skis I used to ski on before these shorter carving skis became the rage - they are known for their ease of turning. I bought them instead of the x wing Fury because they are supposed to be more flexible and forgiving, easy to turn etc... compared to the higher end, "expert" level Fury. These skis are what enabled me to learn to do short, fast turns with ease. I couldn't make it through any bumps until I had these skis. I can now, but not well - but that's me, not the ski. They are the most forgiving, fun carving skis I've ever had. Maybe you just need to give them more time. Just giving you my 2 cents and sharing my experience with these skis - very similar to yours, most likely. Mine are 166 and I'm 5'8" female. 

post #9 of 19

You need to take some lessons, or have someone show you how to ski properly.

 

The X-Wing 8 is a forgiving ski; you are able to ski straight down the groomed runs without making any tight turns, but when you have to turn the ski just forgives for thinking you wanted to turn so hard at speed and maybe turns only a little 'cause it's got such a weak grip on the snow.   These skis will turn if you are skiing slowly enough.    It sounds like you will need to slow down a lot for moguls.  Try skiing up the moguls while turning to slow down, it's easier to control speed that way than following the rut line.

 

Your method of turning requires you to lift the ski off the snow and reset the steering angle; you should be tipping the ski and shifting your weight to pressure the ski so that it dials  up it's own steering angle.

 

Heavy?  There may be lighter skis with less swing weight, but you should still be able to hop a foot in the air with these skis.  Try pushing the Earth down really fast with your feet and then picking them up.wink.gif

 

Ski frontwards; it's easier to see where you going that way.

post #10 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by fuzzybabybunny View Post

That's the thing. I love fast icy hardpack groomers but I also really want to do trees and moguls and powder, but I can't. I bought these skis not even knowing what "piste" means, so obviously there was no purpose other than it was cheap.

 

The reason I ask this question is because those Salomons are rated as 80% piste, 20% off-piste, which I take to mean they're supposed to suck off-piste. Am I going to expect better results by going with a different ski?

 

 

you skis should be fine for bumps/ skied off piste. In powder I could imagine such a skinny shapely skis could cause some issues for someone not use to skiing powder.

 

Most people "who love black groomers"  simply do not have the skill set to ski bumps or trees. In takes knowing the skills needed and practicing them loads. Might ever require some time spent on green slopes.

 

you said it yourself "you never link tight turns" "its just not my style of skiing" no idea how you could ever learn to ski in bumps with out ever doing short turns and lots of short turns like every run for mutliple days short turns.  the skis are not the magical fix here learn to do a solid multi radius/ and shaped short turn including pivots straight down the fall line. Learn to skid them learn to do them as carved as possible. Learn to be versatile. Maching large turns that probably are not even carved down  black groomers is not making you any better and eventually more fun lies ahead with more skill.

post #11 of 19
What Josh said.
post #12 of 19

Josh pretty much covered it.  Please note that I never asked if you did link short radius turns, I asked if you could and there is a difference.  The fact that you don't means you lack the skills to ski moguls, or as someone on here said, "It isn't that you can't ski moguls, it's that you can't ski and the moguls prove it."  You have two choices:  keep doing what you've been doing and hoping for a different outcome or start taking lessons from experienced instructors.  All day private lessons might cost $155 but group lessons do not.  You can also try to buy improvement by getting different skis, but it won't work and in the long run you'll spend more than if you took lessons and you still won't know how to ski.

post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

 All day private lessons might cost $155 but group lessons do not.

Please tell me where an all day private lesson can be had for $155? At most of the larger ski areas where I've looked into it it's more like $600 (or more!), plus tip.

Don't get me wrong - I agree with everything Josh said as well, and actually just this week took a group lesson which ended up a semi-private (me and one other guy - still with tip it was more than $155), and I got a few golden take aways mostly having to do with stance and balance that have had an immediate impact on my skiing - I skied bumps more effectively after embracing those stance tips than ever before, and that was because I was set up to make turns where and when I wanted to.

A good pro (instructor) can suss you out in a few turns, and give you the keys to the kingdom, but as stated above this is the real key...

It takes knowing the skills needed and practicing them loads.

Until you can take a lesson check out this video - soak up the images of the skier and practice the drills (on green/bunny slopes to start) shown in the second half of the video- they will improve your skiing!


Also, pay attention to where the skier's arms and hands are in the video - arms away from the body, hands out front. Keep them that way religiously when you ski, (so you can continuously see your hands in front of you), and if/when you make a pole plant push that hand forward and keep it out front and in view as you enter and go through the turn.

My number one problem, (and probably number one for most if not all lower level skiers), is getting back - I tend to drop my arms and my balance moves back on my skis. When you're back you can't control (turn) your skis effectively. Arms out and hands forward will go a long way towards keeping you out of the backseat.
Edited by jc-ski - 4/5/13 at 9:59am
post #14 of 19
Spend $155 for a workshop at Breck. 4 people max-6 hour lesson. Ask for Bags, Tommy Banks, Randy Brooks, Or any other Level 3. It will be worth your time.

It's not your equipment.
post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post

We know nothing about your ability, nor what mogul run you were having trouble with, or if your boots really fit your feet or were meant for someone else's feet.  How long have you been skiing?  How many lessons have you had?  Can you link tight radius parallel turns down a moderately steep groomer without gaining speed?  Can you have someone video you while skiing and then post that?

 

From what you say I would recommend staying out of the trees until you are fully in control and your description sounds like you are mostly out of control.  You do not have to see your skis to ski powder, in fact before fat skis nobody saw their skis in powder that was over about 12" deep.  If you put on your friends' park skis can you jump 1.5 feet in the air?  "No flex at all"  sorry but there are no skis like that.

Mtcyclist asked some really good questions. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by fuzzybabybunny View Post

1. I've got about 60 days on the mountain. For the past 40 I'd say I rode exclusively groomed fast black runs in Tahoe (Northstar, Kirkwood).

2. I have a hard time on mostly all mogul runs.

3. I went to a boot fitter to get my boots (Cosmo's in Tahoe)

4. No lessons. They cost a lot at $155 a pop (at Breck anyway)

5. I never link tight turns. Just not the style of skiing that I do.

 

I never had a chance to put on my friend's park skis. 

 

There is "no flex" compared to my friend's park skis. When he leans forward his skis bend so much that he can palm the ground. My skis on the other hand flex maybe an inch.

I'm familiar with Northstar and Kirkwood.  Group lessons may cost you a few bucks but you'll get a lot out of it and you'll be happy you did.

As for Short Radius Turns......Its a skill you need if you want to ski moguls well, instead of surviving them. 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Matta View Post

 

 

you skis should be fine for bumps/ skied off piste. In powder I could imagine such a skinny shapely skis could cause some issues for someone not use to skiing powder.

 

Most people "who love black groomers"  simply do not have the skill set to ski bumps or trees. In takes knowing the skills needed and practicing them loads. Might ever require some time spent on green slopes.

 

you said it yourself "you never link tight turns" "its just not my style of skiing" no idea how you could ever learn to ski in bumps with out ever doing short turns and lots of short turns like every run for mutliple days short turns.  the skis are not the magical fix here learn to do a solid multi radius/ and shaped short turn including pivots straight down the fall line. Learn to skid them learn to do them as carved as possible. Learn to be versatile. Maching large turns that probably are not even carved down  black groomers is not making you any better and eventually more fun lies ahead with more skill.

Josh naild it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by skier31 View Post

Spend $155 for a workshop at Breck. 4 people max-6 hour lesson. Ask for Bags, Tommy Banks, Randy Brooks, Or any other Level 3. It will be worth your time.

It's not your equipment.

Perhaps a park ski is better suited for what fuzzybabybunny wants to do in the long run, but the skis FBB has now are in deed not the problem, and he can definitely learn some good skills on them.

post #16 of 19

Hello, I'm sorry I write about that a lot later than you asked, but those skis are way too long for you. I don't know why you got that size but I'm 5.5 and I ski on 146cm. Up to 150 will be fine, but 160 kind of long even for experts. That in my opinion is your major problem. I would sell them on ebay and go to a ski store for proper sizing. I understand you got them cheap but they are just not for you. Other than that the skis are great and somebody will enjoy them.

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

Hello, I'm sorry I write about that a lot later than you asked, but those skis are way too long for you. I don't know why you got that size but I'm 5.5 and I ski on 146cm. Up to 150 will be fine, but 160 kind of long even for experts. That in my opinion is your major problem. I would sell them on ebay and go to a ski store for proper sizing. I understand you got them cheap but they are just not for you. Other than that the skis are great and somebody will enjoy them.

160 is not long for experts who are 5'5".  

 

However, 168 might be a bit long for FBB given the level of skill development.  Maybe.  

But shorter skis won't deliver new skills.

Lessons will help with the OP's stated issues more than new skis.  

FBB, you could handle those 168s if you gained a bit more versatility.  

That's what instructors are supposed to help you develop.

Sign up for a group lesson on a non-holiday week day.  You may be the only one in the lesson, thus you'll get a private for the price of a group lesson.

post #18 of 19

I'm 5'2 and ski 169 twintips and 160 groomer skis similar to what you're on. The x-wings are good groomer skis and the 160 length is not at all out of line of what an expert skier should be skiing on. It is more the construction of the ski. All of those problems in the soft stuff and bumps are to be expected. Because it is a system ski, meaning the binding is on a track, there is more material required to build around the binding making the ski heavier. Also, it has a layer of titanium to keep it stable and fast on groomers, which also is what makes it heavy in the pow and stiff in the bumps. Keep that for your boilerplate days and go with an all wood core twintip ski for the woods, park, and bumps. I ski on the Nordica Soul Rider in a 169 and I think that would be a great ski for what you're doing. It is 97mm underfoot so it will float all day in soft snow, it is a twin tip so you can take it in the park, and has camber underfoot so it rails on the groomers. I love the ski because I can take it anywhere on the mountain I want to go all in one day and even hit some park laps at the end. A park twin would be symmetrical meaning that the tip width is the same as the tail. The Soul Rider is an all-mountain twin meaning the tip is wider than the tail and it has a sidewall construction allowing you to lay it flat against ice. That or the Volkl Bridge would be an awesome choice. The Bridge is fully rockered with no camber meaning it is shaped like a banana and super pivoty, while it won't hold as well on the ice if you're a good skier you can make it flex into any type of turn you want to make. They make that in a 171. For twin skis you want to size at the top of your head or just above because you account for the turned up tail.

post #19 of 19

I think I tried these at one of those Salomon tent demos. As I recall, it was years ago, they're light and responsive to a fault, good grip, lot of snow feedback. Nice intermediate to advanced ski. Some of your comments suggest it's you. They should be fine in bumps, for instance. Trees, well if there hasn't been snow in a while they should be decent. But as Josh says, if you can't link short turns, in bumps or trees you'll have your behind handed to you by any ski. And if you can't hop on them, uh, I guess you're not hopping high enough. They're not powder skis, and as I recall weren't rockered, so not surprising they dive in powder. And they're definitely not park skis, nor designed for switch. 

 

I'd suggest taking some lessons, enjoy them for what they are. But don't expect that to make them into powder skis, or to excel in the park. 

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