OK, so... just for posterity I figured I'd update in case others are thinking too much about this sort of thing and not having enough martinis during the critical decision phase.
I went and rode some skis last weekend. Again. I'm no noob... but things have changed. I a took a lesson to make sure I was actually using these water skis properly because they do ski a little different than my old long, narrow mounts ( a bit of an understatement). Turns out... just open the stance was spot on. Everything else is the same except these things make the work easier if you trust the edges to do things you didn't think they could.
So... stuff I tried in the last couple weeks:
- Rossi E88, liked 'em didn't love them. A bit too ... uninspired in any one way but a Camry of skis. They do whatever you want and I would learn to love them for that.
- Volkl RTM 80, loved the carving... couldn't make them do much else. They are darty. They do not want any lazy old men skidding them late in the afternoon.
- Atomic IT Blackeye LOVED them in mashed potatos. Loved them unequivocally... until it froze again late in the day. Then they turned on me. What they gave up in crushing hard lumpy stuff they made up for in doing what I was just thinking. so close.... but a one night stand anyway.
- Solomon 850 enduro (beat to shit old demos with huge demo bindings... but still actually liked 'em) These rocked. I could have been happy on them but the seller pissed me off with their firm "new" pricing on the used Rossis and ... er... yeah. Not going to to business with them. Great, fun ski. Only dealer in town.
I really wanted to demo the Kendo, Brahma & Motive86 but I also want the power of flight and they are all pretty close to the same percentage of possibility 'round here.
I tried what I tried. So. With 2 solid choices at hand... I talked too much at people who were pretty disinterested in having any further discussion when we left what they had in stock behind. I rode the lift with redcoats and asked irritating questions. I pestered my instructor for 90 minutes with a conversation he has heard 1000x. I tried to buy a set of Rossi E88s on nice light bindings already setup for my same size boot that someone else had returned after riding for a week for bargain but the shop thought they were a deal at $700 and got angry instead of trying to sell something. So all that was left was to go to another shop and pick the Atomic or Solomon after yet another boorish conversation about my likes and wants where they try to move whatever they have left.
So. I went home. I had a martini (and a second... not sure... maybe a third). I ran a few internet searches ... and promptly bought a set of brand spankin' new 2014 Brahmas with Marker Griffon 13s mounted on 'em from a vendor who posts here a lot, on sale, delivered sometime this week for free shipping at $626. Who doesn't love a sale? How bad can they be? Impatience thy name is <insert my name here>
Thanks for all the insightful help. I'm pretty sure my bargain impulse buy will turn out just fine given reviews, feedback from shop guys, the relative company these boards share, etc... but if it doesn't work out ... see my ebay ad next week! I'll make ya a helluva deal
Edited by walterj - 2/24/14 at 5:37pm