Originally Posted by dawgcatching
What I want to know: why some skis don't technically have rocker/early rise yet ski like they do (tip getting out of the way) yet others have rocker/early rise, but ski firm and don't have a tip that gets out of the way when it needs to. Is this another example of a catch phrase trumping engineering? After all, there is more than a few ways to make a ski perform a certain way.
IMO part of the issue is that AFAIK rocker was originally intended for skis running at or near flat, in powder deep enough to cover the entire top. Rocker allowed the ski to come up easier, and to retain the stability of a longer running length without being ponderous in a submerged turn.
Then, one step removed from original purpose: Rocker seemed to make initiation and finish "easier" when the ski wasn't covered with snow. In reality, that was mostly attributable to shorter running lengths, not the curve itself, except for full rocker curves that made pivoting silly simple.
Then, two steps removed from original purpose: The shorter running length permitted - or necessitated - a stiffer flex.
Then, three steps removed from original purpose: The camber curve could be mated with the contact point for the sidecut in various ways to change handling during turns. As with any other tip curve over the last 2,000 years. The mating of the camber curvature, sidecut, flex, and tip shape produced all kinds of options. Just as with any other tip curve or the past 2,000 years.
Then, four steps removed from original purpose: Josh's types become normative, so what's newsworthy is a new model over 80 mm without rocker. Soon, that'll be any new model, period, including WC skis.
TBA: Fifth step, in which we stop blathering about rocker as if it's something special, assume it as we used to assume "traditional" tips or tails, and move on. Josh's types are lost except to archeologists of the internet, which was abandoned after all newborns by law received their occipital interface plug.