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Any thoughts on 2014 Surface Save Life skis?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

My son is a patroller here in the east and is really interested in the Surface Save Life skis.

 

Haven't found much info on the skis in general, although the 2013 model seems to get mixed reviews.  Looks like they've changed them up for 2014 and would love to hear some feedback from any patrollers who have had a chance to ski them.

 

My son is 5'7" and about 145.  He likes skiing the trees and tighter spaces and I'm thinking the 166 length for his size in the east.

 

Any feedback appreciated

post #2 of 15

Surface does get a lot of mixed reviews, personally the pair I owned I didn't really care for. However their powder skis like the New Lives are great. Would be good if he could demo first. There are probably better options..

post #3 of 15

I don't know where your son patrols, but here in the (far)north-east, I don't think I would want to use a 100 mm wide waist as my daily driver patrol ski, and I weigh more than your son.  For those rare storm days or days when we open the maze through the trees, yes, but not for most days.


Edited by Ghost - 12/15/13 at 9:48am
post #4 of 15

The only broken ski's I have ever seen were Surface.

post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 

Demos are not an option .. particularly as these are only sold direct to patrollers.

 

I am a bit leery of a 100 mm ski in the northeast, but skis like the Bonafide and Mantra prove that you can build a wider ski that works just as well in the east as it does out west.

 

As a 21-year-old, he's more interested in the ski graphics than the performance - but it's still got to be a ski that works reasonably well for what and where he typically skis.

post #6 of 15

I Patrol in Quebec and got a set of Save life 2014. I can tell you that they perform  extremelly well on all conditions despite of the 100mm waist. The must of them is the weight and performance, you can have them in your legs and they are just amazing. If you have a big storm or doing any meadows they are very good. On hard pack you will work a bit to put themto carve but they will do the job. As soon as the snow becomes more soft they really work well. These are all mountain skis, I have mine with marker Griffon 110mm brakes and mounted 8 cms back from the center (this reccomendation came from other patrolers). 

I'm 5,7 and 175 lbs and usin 166. Great buy and he'll have a lot of comments about the skis. 

 

Good luck

 

C4ipp3r

post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 

Thanks C4ipp3r!

 

At $250 for patrollers, I decided to pull the trigger and get a pair for him for his b'day (coming up just after Xmas).  He can always fall back to his K2's on hard snow days, but give him 6" of fresh and a decent base and he's likely off in the trees, bumps and anything ungroomed where the width would be more appreciated.  The 18m radius compares with the Soul 7's - which seem to be the current soft snow, all mountain ride of choice ... this may not be his daily driver, but I think they'll do fine for anytime we've got some fresh on the hill.

 

I've seen some posts over on TGR related to binding mount points.  I see you mounted them back of the line, but did you happen to check what Surface recommends?  Also curious about flex.  He's 5'6" and about 145, so he hasn't got a lot of weight to flex a stiffer ski (like a Mantra, for example), so I'm hoping the flex is a bit softer than some of the beefy skis that are normally thought of as Eastern skis.

post #8 of 15

 

 

Quote:

Originally Posted by OldEasternSkier View Post
 

Thanks C4ipp3r!

 

At $250 for patrollers, I decided to pull the trigger and get a pair for him for his b'day (coming up just after Xmas).  He can always fall back to his K2's on hard snow days, but give him 6" of fresh and a decent base and he's likely off in the trees, bumps and anything ungroomed where the width would be more appreciated.  The 18m radius compares with the Soul 7's - which seem to be the current soft snow, all mountain ride of choice ... this may not be his daily driver, but I think they'll do fine for anytime we've got some fresh on the hill.

 

 

 

I've seen some posts over on TGR related to binding mount points.  I see you mounted them back of the line, but did you happen to check what Surface recommends?  Also curious about flex.  He's 5'6" and about 145, so he hasn't got a lot of weight to flex a stiffer ski (like a Mantra, for example), so I'm hoping the flex is a bit softer than some of the beefy skis that are normally thought of as Eastern skis.

Surface has a pdf with all the reccomended settings for the skis except the Save Life. The reccomendation came from other patrolers that had mounted center as it should or 6-8 cm back - and most of the patrolers from Mount Washington who had the ski, mounted the same way as I did and loved the ski - 4 of them mounted center and hated the behavior and latter on mounted back as the others. 

Those are wooden core  skis (maple and popplar) so should be ok and the 18m radius is good on big mountain but a good skier can make them work on short radius. I'm a 4 year skier with over 350+ ski days but tried a lot of skis. My other set is a Elan Waveflex 12 (awesome skis, asymetrics and sweet for slalom) but I'm sold with the surface because they are light, very forgiving and is great to work a shift with. As I've said once you have a pair on hand, you will see the difference and I can tell you - las week end with a 12in they were a blast. 

 

Also regarding been a 100mm I was skkiing with folks with 85mm + and that's becoming the norm, so we're a compromise from the 120+ POW skis and the 74 slalom machines. Good luck to your son and hope he'll enjoy the b'day gift and have a great ski season . 

 

 

the Surface manual   http://www.surfaceskis.com/mounting.pdf


Edited by c4ipp3r - 12/17/13 at 6:01pm
post #9 of 15

Purchased a pair this week. I received them in two days. I patrol at an eastern Pennsylvania resort. Used them for the first time last night. The skis are awesome. They turn on a dime and hold on the ice better than any other ski I have owned. I am already considering buying a second pair and putting them away for the future. You will not be disappointed with these skis. 

post #10 of 15
Pass on the surface savelife skis. The quality is awful, the performance is weak, and the company is the absolute worst to deal with. My savelifes delaminated by day 50. The company said "what do you expect for the money" and then told me that it was because I "didn't know how to ski". Who the F are these guys?
post #11 of 15

Moe importantly , who the F are you??

post #12 of 15

I feel like there is a much higher than average number of low posters in this thread.  Why is that?  

post #13 of 15

Surface has really gone downhill lately, they don't respond to emails or phone calls and the service that once seemed quite good, no longer exists. Save the money, buy a decent pair of skis and if you want to support a small brand there are many options that are MUCH better.

post #14 of 15

Unless you're skiing powder stay away from these skis.  I purchased the 2013 Save Life skis and although I ski on hard packed Midwest snow the skis were impressive at first. After using them for 8 shifts the bases looked terrible. I left several voicemail and email messages with Surface that were never answered. When I had them tuned they had to grind the bases because they had broken down so badly. Well they made it for another 6 shifts before the bases broke down again. I called and emailed again with no response.  I mentioned it to one of the reps from the National Ski Patrol while I was ordering supplies. They put me in touch with the NSP contact for Surface. After several emails that all had to go through NSP's contact and having the skis shipped back they agreed to replace them with the 2014 Save Life skis. Instead they shipped the Green Life skis. At this point I was happy they sent anything.  I had them tuned when I had the bindings mounted. They lasted a total of 5 shifts before they were unusable. The bottom line is the base material used on the skis I had was poor quality and not meant to use on crud. If you ski nothing but powder take your chances. If you ski on anything else run don't walk away from this ski! 

post #15 of 15

Based on the mixed reviews, I was very skeptical in buying these skis but got a free set of Knee Bindings for a study so thought I'd give them a shot (2016 version, basic white and red).  After measuring from the tail, I didn't have to have to adjust mounting from the centerline (as suggested in some other posts online).  I have now skied these 5 ski patrol shifts at Holiday Valley in western New York.  Conditions ranged from 6" - 7" fresh powder to nearly pure shaved hard pack/ice (last night).   I am extremely happy with the performance of these skis, comparable, if not better than my Rossignol Experience 88s.  They are lighter, responsive, and perform well on short-radius, mid-radius, and long-radius turns, moguls, and terrain parks.  They don't "self" turn as much as the Rossy's but I like to work a ski so no problem with that.  We'll see if they hold up to 2 -3 day/week skiing but so far I'm loving these skis.

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