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170 vs 178 cm Experience 88...help choosing ski length - Page 2

post #31 of 35
Glad it worked out. Given the mix of opinions you got from people here, you did the right thing to demo both and pick the one you liked! Enjoy.
post #32 of 35

I just read that you went with the 170s after typing out my suggestion. I think you made a good choice, and I'll let you read what I was going to tell you just because you said you're interested in hearing thoughts/reactions to your choice.

 

"You're kinda on the border of which length would be ideal for you. My recommendation would be that if you plan to do a lot of trees, bumps, and techy stuff, go with the 170s, and if you prefer to ski fast on groomers and big open powder fields, go with the 178s. With you being an intermediate skier I would very slightly lean towards the 170s but you'd do fine with the 178s too, especially if you already tried them and like them. The 170s will be more maneuvarable and easier to control, the 178s will be more stable and a little faster."

post #33 of 35
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sh4d0w View Post

I just read that you went with the 170s after typing out my suggestion. I think you made a good choice, and I'll let you read what I was going to tell you just because you said you're interested in hearing thoughts/reactions to your choice.

"You're kinda on the border of which length would be ideal for you. My recommendation would be that if you plan to do a lot of trees, bumps, and techy stuff, go with the 170s, and if you prefer to ski fast on groomers and big open powder fields, go with the 178s. With you being an intermediate skier I would very slightly lean towards the 170s but you'd do fine with the 178s too, especially if you already tried them and like them. The 170s will be more maneuvarable and easier to control, the 178s will be more stable and a little faster."

Thanks! I'm curious to try my new skis at my home hill and see how they do on the stuff I enjoy going fast on, the more mellow blue terrain. The 170s were fun on similar terrain at Crystal yesterday morning. I think a big plus of them is they make the steeper stuff seem more manageable to me. I was struck by how much less effort the same steeper terrain was on the 170s vs 178s. I think I leaned more towards the 170s when I realized I was going so slowly, skiing across the mountain, and turning such that that I didn't have much momentum at the bottom of a steep section to keep a good pace going--I felt more fluid on the 170s.

How do mashed potato/spring conditions impact how a ski performs?

Also, I've seen different recommendations and ways to help folks decide on a ski length. One rule of thumb is that intermediates should be skiing on skis somewhere between their chin and their head, and experts should be on skis head height or taller. The 170s come up to my eyes or forehead, and the 178s are a bit taller than I am, so this rule of thumb seems to apply in my case. Would you all agree? Should intermediates generally ski on skis shorter than they are?

Due to physical limitations that impact my balance and coordination, I may be a perpetual intermediate. But perhaps these skis will help me move towards being an advanced skier.
Edited by folkfan - 4/6/14 at 4:17pm
post #34 of 35

In general I would agree on ~chin height for beginner, ~top of head for advanced-expert, and in between for intermediate, but it depends on a lot more factors than that. If you get a ski with a lot of rocker it will feel shorter than it is, so you want to go longer. If you want a ski solely for hard charging on big open faces, you want longer. If you want something for really tight trees and narrow technical rocky chutes, you want shorter. There's so many variables. And then there's personal preference of course.

 

Spring conditions are so variable that they don't really affect a ski in just one way. Spring oftentimes brings the best of powder, but it also brings out slush and ice. I think it makes more sense to ask about a specific condition rather than a specific time of year. On ice you want something directional (not twin tip, little to no tail rocker) with minimal tip rocker, a lot of sidecut, narrow, and sharp edges. In deep pow you want something wide, long, with a lot of rocker. In variable snow, crud, etc, you want tip rocker to plow over the crud. In slush you're going to be slowed down no matter what, but a fresh coat of warm weather spring wax will certainly help. And then of course there's the terrain you're skiing. Trees? Rocky chutes? Groomers? Bump runs? And your style of skiing of course. Are you a hard charger? Are you a playful jibber, throwing 180s off everything and skiing backwards as often as you ski forwards? Do you like the tight techy chutes? Do you like skiing casually on shallow groomers?

post #35 of 35

I think I can help you here, we're about the same size. Some of the skis are too stiff in the 178ish length versus the 170-171 length. However, if you tried a particular ski in the 178 lentgth, and it didn't feel hard to turn, or too stiff. then you'll have a slightly more versatile ski in this length versus the 170 or so, for off piste skiing and powder. If you're staying on groomed and packed runs, the 170 will be fine. 

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