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Season 2016 Skis - Page 2

post #31 of 53
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Snuckerpooks View Post
 

So 2 days ago I did some sampling on the FIS GS models from HEAD, Atomic, Salomon, and Fischer. Sadly the test only had 190/35, no 195/35.

 

HEAD:

My favorite of the ones I got to test. It felt the most nimble to me during the transitions from turns. For me it was also the most linear flex. It gradually got stiffer compared to other skis which stiffness came fast.

 

Atomic:

My favorite top sheet. Felt the most calm when in the ruts and the smoothest. The stiffness comes fast. Not my preference but still really enjoyable when I put the hammer down. I like the binding on it too as it was really easy to change the setup.

 

Salomon:

Similar to the Atomic. Really calm but the stiffness wasn't as strong as the Atomic.

 

Fischer:

The biggest surprise for me. Much lighter feel than the Fischer 186/27's I have now. More akin to the HEAD in terms of stiffness and flex. Out of the turn the tail felt much stiffer and can throw you in the back seat very quickly if you aren't on top of your game.

 

WHAT THEY ALL DO:

All of the manufacturers have gotten the entry of the turn dialed in. They all wanted to be on edge as soon as you even thought about the next turn. 

 

Great input. Thanks.

post #32 of 53

It all depends...a 158 works better for me...in a course...than a 165, but it all depends on what works for you...

 

:cool

post #33 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdk6 View Post
 

 

Thanks for the info. Im curious to know how the 158cm shapes up to the 165cm on a regular racing track.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiRacer55 View Post
 

It all depends...a 158 works better for me...in a course...than a 165, but it all depends on what works for you...

 

:cool


TDK, you really need to compare them back to back to see what works for you,  I spent a few seasons flipping back and forth but have now settled on the 165. I find the extra tail gives me a bit more ability to pull off a recovery and stay in the course if (or truthfully, when!  :D) i get caught in the back seat

post #34 of 53
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the input guys. I just have to get hold of a shorter pair and try them out. Just checked old videos from 2006 where I was skiing on 161cm Heads. Looked ok from a gate skiing perspective. The question is really if the new generation 165 SL skis with possible tip rocker and softer flex turn quicker than my current stiff planks from a few years back.

post #35 of 53

The 158 mystery....... don't know about Atomic, but for 2016 Head are offering the i.SL RD in 156, 158 and 165. Been trying to figure out if my boy should be on the 156 SL Team (Jr ski) or the ladies' 156 i.SL RD. Tried the RD and it was way stiff for him, but the word on the grapevine was to try the 158cm instead. Seems the lighter U16 boys were skiing faster and better on that ski. Sure enough, it worked pretty well - though he needs to learn to work it properly if he's gonna race on it next season. Dry land training beckons ;)

 

The word is (and the guy has a direct line to the Head factory) that the 158 is targeted at the ladies' parallel slalom/city events. Slightly longer, with a softer flex pattern. At first I thought that sounded a bit bogus, but there must be something driving them to release two WC slalom skis with a 2cm difference in length (and no 160cm this time, as far as I can remember).

post #36 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squawker View Post
 

The 158 mystery....... don't know about Atomic, but for 2016 Head are offering the i.SL RD in 156, 158 and 165. Been trying to figure out if my boy should be on the 156 SL Team (Jr ski) or the ladies' 156 i.SL RD. Tried the RD and it was way stiff for him, but the word on the grapevine was to try the 158cm instead. Seems the lighter U16 boys were skiing faster and better on that ski. Sure enough, it worked pretty well - though he needs to learn to work it properly if he's gonna race on it next season. Dry land training beckons ;)

 

The word is (and the guy has a direct line to the Head factory) that the 158 is targeted at the ladies' parallel slalom/city events. Slightly longer, with a softer flex pattern. At first I thought that sounded a bit bogus, but there must be something driving them to release two WC slalom skis with a 2cm difference in length (and no 160cm this time, as far as I can remember).


2 cm does not sound much but I suspect if you look at them it is quite a bit more ski.  If you look at the 158 Atomic it looks bang in the middle of the 155 and 165 when you stand the 3 of them together. I had a picture of this somewhere but of course I can't find it now!

post #37 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squawker View Post
 

The 158 mystery....... don't know about Atomic, but for 2016 Head are offering the i.SL RD in 156, 158 and 165. Been trying to figure out if my boy should be on the 156 SL Team (Jr ski) or the ladies' 156 i.SL RD. Tried the RD and it was way stiff for him, but the word on the grapevine was to try the 158cm instead. Seems the lighter U16 boys were skiing faster and better on that ski. Sure enough, it worked pretty well - though he needs to learn to work it properly if he's gonna race on it next season. Dry land training beckons ;)

 

The word is (and the guy has a direct line to the Head factory) that the 158 is targeted at the ladies' parallel slalom/city events. Slightly longer, with a softer flex pattern. At first I thought that sounded a bit bogus, but there must be something driving them to release two WC slalom skis with a 2cm difference in length (and no 160cm this time, as far as I can remember).


The U16 level is a tough group to buy skis for. I've seen most of them this season end up on adult skis for both SL and GS. Many of the stronger U16s overpower the "tweener" skis that have come out the past few seasons. The tweener skis can to be too much ski for smaller U14s, but not enough ski for the stronger U16s. There seems to be a growing consensus, at least in my area, to get the U16s on adult skis sooner than later. I suspect that we are going to see a push to get U14s on longer skis sooner too.

post #38 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainKirk View Post
 


The U16 level is a tough group to buy skis for. I've seen most of them this season end up on adult skis for both SL and GS. Many of the stronger U16s overpower the "tweener" skis that have come out the past few seasons. The tweener skis can to be too much ski for smaller U14s, but not enough ski for the stronger U16s. There seems to be a growing consensus, at least in my area, to get the U16s on adult skis sooner than later. I suspect that we are going to see a push to get U14s on longer skis sooner too.


Yeah, I see a lot of the stronger U16 boys  on the 157/158. Not too many on the 165 though

post #39 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainKirk View Post
 


The U16 level is a tough group to buy skis for. I've seen most of them this season end up on adult skis for both SL and GS. Many of the stronger U16s overpower the "tweener" skis that have come out the past few seasons. The tweener skis can to be too much ski for smaller U14s, but not enough ski for the stronger U16s. There seems to be a growing consensus, at least in my area, to get the U16s on adult skis sooner than later. I suspect that we are going to see a push to get U14s on longer skis sooner too.

SL skis are not an issue but GS may be - FIS skis are >30m radius while tweeters are ~23m. The U16 courses are usually set at 24-25m so FIS skis will be problematic.

My U16 daughter is switching to women FIS SL but staying on tweeter GS for this reason.

post #40 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScotsSkier View Post
 


2 cm does not sound much but I suspect if you look at them it is quite a bit more ski.  If you look at the 158 Atomic it looks bang in the middle of the 155 and 165 when you stand the 3 of them together. I had a picture of this somewhere but of course I can't find it now!


Hmm, I had both the 156 and 158 in my hands on Wednesday, and the difference in length seemed very small.

 

One of our neighbouring clubs has done extensive timing tests with U16 racers on the different lengths, as well as several brands (at least Atomic, Head and Rossi, maybe more).
They are utterly convinced that the Head 158s that have come in as demo skis to Norway so far have been softer flexing than the 156s, and that the first year U16 boys were skiing the 158 consistently faster and handling it better in the SL gates.

 

So we tried, and all I can say is that I concur. If the demo pair is truly representative then its an excellent ski for racers >50kg with good technique, where the 156 needs more weight and/or muscle to drive it properly.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainKirk View Post
 


The U16 level is a tough group to buy skis for. I've seen most of them this season end up on adult skis for both SL and GS. Many of the stronger U16s overpower the "tweener" skis that have come out the past few seasons. The tweener skis can to be too much ski for smaller U14s, but not enough ski for the stronger U16s. There seems to be a growing consensus, at least in my area, to get the U16s on adult skis sooner than later. I suspect that we are going to see a push to get U14s on longer skis sooner too.

 

Same tendency here. My boy will be 1st year U16 (he's not even 14 until September) and I've ordered the i.GS RD 181 r>25m and bought him the i.SG RD 202 r=40m !!

The SGs shocked him a bit, but they flexed quite soft, and are generally a better built ski than the 195 for the same $$$s.

 

The thing with the 158 SL skis is, that even though he couldn't ski them cleanly in the tighest of turns yet (he only demoed them for half a session on Wednesday evening), he was generally very solid on them. Going back to his old 146 Jr. skis he immediately looked squirrely and you could tell he was overpowering them (though he'd claim they were much more "skiable", for now at least). I'm putting him on a cheaply acquired pair of 156 Jrs for spring/summer camps, then we'll migrate to the adult skis in the autumn (probably wont't get them until then anyway).

post #41 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScotsSkier View Post
 


Yeah, I see a lot of the stronger U16 boys  on the 157/158. Not too many on the 165 though


I think most ended up on a 155-158, however from what I saw, the U16s who were on the 165s looked better in the course, however the 165 definitely has a much smaller margin of pilot error. On the other hand, the U16s who were on the 165s (assuming they were physically big and skilled enough) got a full season on a ski that eventually all the boys will be on as they get older. Tough call: do you let them struggle a little bit now on a 165, but be better prepared for the future or do you put them on an "easier" 155 now, then let them figure out the 165 later?? Probably no right answer, but depends on the skill, physical maturity, and expectation of the individual racer.

post #42 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by hobieboy View Post
 

SL skis are not an issue but GS may be - FIS skis are >30m radius while tweeters are ~23m. The U16 courses are usually set at 24-25m so FIS skis will be problematic.

My U16 daughter is switching to women FIS SL but staying on tweeter GS for this reason.


Another tough call. The new 30M skis turn much better than the 27M skis of a few years ago. But you are right, in a really tight course, they make a challenging task more challenging! On the other hand, I've seen U16s take a 30M ski and rip right through a U12-U14 practice course. Plus, many U16s race in U16 - SR open races, where the 30M is an advantage over a 23-25M ski.

post #43 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainKirk View Post
 


The U16 level is a tough group to buy skis for. I've seen most of them this season end up on adult skis for both SL and GS. Many of the stronger U16s overpower the "tweener" skis that have come out the past few seasons. The tweener skis can to be too much ski for smaller U14s, but not enough ski for the stronger U16s. There seems to be a growing consensus, at least in my area, to get the U16s on adult skis sooner than later. I suspect that we are going to see a push to get U14s on longer skis sooner too.


Over here it's definitely a "push" towards longer in U14. My daughter did her first U14 year this season and her coach wanted her on 170 in GS and 185 in SG, and she's a medium to small sized kid (but physically strong and agile though from gymnastics), starting  pre season 14/15 at 48 kgs/153 cm and now weighing around 50kgs/155cm. Eventually she skied 165 and 186 and it worked out good for her, but we might move to 170 coming pre season, depending on how much she grow this summer.

 

Edit. And 146 SL. Probably stay on that.

post #44 of 53

At U16 the courses are bigger, faster and rougher, and an adult ski seems to work much better than and junior ski.  Around here the stronger U16 men have tended to go women's FIS (30m) skis for GS (1st and 2nd years) and 155/158 for first year skiers and 165 SLs for the top 2nd years.  They don't seem to have an issue turning the 30m skis, and hopefully the transition to the 35s will be easier with 2 years on the 30s.  FWIW, a few U18s ran USSA races on 35s and it wasn't too easy (either radius or flex, who knows).  SG probably had the biggest discrepancy, I saw everything from 195cm Jr SGs to 210/212 men's SGs and everything in between.  Older 205-210 33-35m or 202/205 40m skis seemed to be the good alternative for the stronger boys.  With the age change a lot of the U16s are hitting or have hit their growth spurt and have the size for softer flexing adult skis, if not the muscle mass for a full blown men's ski. 

post #45 of 53

I would  definitely check  out the Redster XT 2016, I got the chance to ski  them a couple months ago and they feel great.  There feel very  nimble, and  will really do  any type of turn you want which is whats advertised(The XT is supposed to be in between  a sl and gs ski), they also initiate turns really quickly and have a great tail that slings you into the next turn.  All that being said I totally  agree with what has been  said above, take the ski easiest to get, they all do a great job at what they're designed for.

post #46 of 53

ProSkiLab™ is not an italian test. It is an european test. 

 

Ski are tested in the Alps, usually in France. Last years we have been testing in la Clusaz, close to Annecy and the Mont Blanc range.

 

Test results are translated in most european languages including english. 

 

If the forum administrator agrees, here are some additional key points about ProSkiLab™ test methodology :

 

1. Testers are top level professionals, very often with national or international level racing background in their discipline. 

 

2. We select the best skis in the market before testing. Actually we pre-test mots of the skis in january to select the products can be included in our final test. That means that skis that are being tested is already a selection of very good skis. 

 

3. Test is comparative... that means that all skis are tested in the same snow conditions and by the same panel of testers.

 

4. We are an totally independant ski test. As advertising pressure from ski manufacturers on tests results was a key issue in France and other european countries, we decided to refuse any advertising or commercial link with them. That's why you won't find ads for skis on our test pages. 

post #47 of 53

Hi ProSkiLab,

 

Nice site, I like the look and it's easy to navigate.  However, the reviews appear to be more oriented to recreational skiing, not pure racing.  For example, "The ski's tail is a bit rigid, which makes it more difficult to exit skid turns" seems to be clear evidence of this.  Good luck, but let's see some pure racing reviews!

post #48 of 53

All the race skis tested appear to be the consumer/cheater versions as opposed to the FIS skis.    

 

I need to see what FIS skis, other than my own, i can beg borrow or steal this season to provide some more input and updates on some of my previous reviews


Edited by ScotsSkier - 7/28/15 at 3:00pm
post #49 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScotsSkier View Post
 

All the race skis tested appear to be the consumer/cheater versions as opposed to the FIS skis.    

 

I need to see what FIS skis, other than my own, i can beg borrow or steal this season to provide some more input and updates on some of my previous reviews

 

Ditto. Too bad we are the minority. -_-

 

I wish I had more time on various makers of the FIS models. I only had one warm, slushy, misty day to test as many as I could. 

post #50 of 53

Quite true.

 

Actually we are very careful to DO NOT test FIS skis (although we often have racers with WC or national level background in our testing team) because these skis target a very narrow public. 

 

Slalom and Giant skis tested by ProSkiLab are often derived from FIS racing skis, softened for a wider public and a wider use, although some can be quite stiff to ride and be used in real SL or GS race. 

post #51 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProSkiLabTM View Post
 

Quite true.

 

Actually we are very careful to DO NOT test FIS skis (although we often have racers with WC or national level background in our testing team) because these skis target a very narrow public. 

 

Slalom and Giant skis tested by ProSkiLab are often derived from FIS racing skis, softened for a wider public and a wider use, although some can be quite stiff to ride and be used in real SL or GS race. 

 

Sure, a narrow segment if viewed from the European perspective.  Juniors, Masters, and upper level recreational skiers in the USA account for some significant numbers.  Many of these skiers will be on FIS or FIS-like (masters) skis.  Others probably have the statistics handy for the numbers, but also to consider is that the number of skis in the quiver plus frequency of buying new skis will be very high for these demographics.  Price points for the FIS skis will be higher as well.  Also worth mentioning is the carry-over from a successful race program to the general public.  There's a reason the brands sponsor racers.

 

Something to consider.  This is a racing forum :D

post #52 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by ProSkiLabTM View Post

Quite true.

Actually we are very careful to DO NOT test FIS skis (although we often have racers with WC or national level background in our testing team) because these skis target a very narrow public. 

Slalom and Giant skis tested by ProSkiLab are often derived from FIS racing skis, softened for a wider public and a wider use, although some can be quite stiff to ride and be used in real SL or GS race. 

Why don't you test also Atomic skis?
post #53 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScotsSkier View Post
 

the blue ones........:D.... 


Yes please. I'll take two!

 

...but only because they were sold out of Pocket Rockets.:D

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