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Atomic GS9 vs SL11

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
What is the main difference between these two? They have the same turning radius, about 14-15m. One is GS and the other is SL.
post #2 of 11
i "believe" the following is correct:::

gs9: 107/65/97 15m radius at 170cm
carbon profile with magnesium rods (carbon channels)

sl11: 105/64/95 14m radius at 160cm
hypercarbon profile with magnesium channels

first off (slightly) different dimensions. the big differences are in the ski construction. atomic skis have two channels running down the length of them, the sl11 uses magnesium channels (like titanium) while the gs9 uses carbon channels with only a very small diameter magnesium rod. on top of the channels on the sl11 goes a layer of atomics "hypercarbon" (titanium on the gs11), while on the gs9 its get plain old carbon. they also have different p-tex bases. result? sl11 is snappy and ultra-responsive while the gs9 has less rebound and doesnt make as big a deal as the sl11 about you mistakes.

basically the sl11 is a pretty beefy unforgiving ski while the gs9 can be used all over the mountain quite nicely. you need to be a hardcharger to keep on top of the sl11.
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
Is there a huge difference between the the SL9 and the SL11 turning radius while skiing? Im asking this because sometimes when turning radius is printed on skiis it really isnt the actual one.
post #4 of 11
yes, definately a huge difference. the difference between 14m and 11m is pretty astounding, espescially at 160cm. just looking at the shovels you can tell theres going to be a difference. the radius printed on the ski is the actual turning radius of the ski, that is not to say however that it is impossible to carve a turn smaller than that number. usually that only relates to gs/sg/dh skis, and is pretty insignifact with sl skis. however, ud have a better chance carving a <11m turn on sl9 than a <14m turn on an sl11. unless you're competing pretty heavily, the sl9 is just as good.
post #5 of 11
The SL:9 and SL:11 are definitely different beasts. The SL:9 is not really a race ski, in that for anything above low end recreational racing, you'd probably want the SL:11. The construction is somewhat different - the base varies, and the 11 uses "power channels", whereas the 9 uses "power rods." The SL:11 is somewhat stiffer, and has a far less agressive sidecut. That said, the SL:9 is a great ski, I have the 03/04 model in a 150, I absolutely love it, it's incredible for carving up the hills - but in a course I'd definitely pick the 11.

A note about radius measurements - the stated radius is based on a calculation involving the measurements of the ski (tip, waist, tail, length). It's generally close to the size of a turn the ski would make if it were simply put on edge, no other skiier action, but it's actually just the result of a calculation. You can certainly turn a ski in a smaller radius than the number on the ski - it's just meant for comparing skis to eachother.
post #6 of 11
The radius number is (approximately*) the radius of the sidecut. That is: put the ski on the ground and look at it from directly above. The sidecut is a curve. Continue the curve beyond the tip and tail, and you create a great big circle. The radius everyone talks about is the radius of that circle. On the off-chance someone doesn't know this, the radius of a circle is the distance from the circle to its center (in other words, half the diameter). As CanuckInstructor notes, you can carve a turn smaller than the sidecut radius.

On the bigger question, I don't know enough to give a real helpful answer, except: the GS9 is a "race carver," intended to help recreational skiers carve nifty medium-radius arcs on groomers (though, of course, you can do other things too); the SL11 is a slalom race ski, intended to help racers carve relatively more "slashing" (for want of better term) quick turns on icy courses. The SL9 is more in the vein of the GS9, I think, but optimized for considerably tighter turns.

*The reason it's approximate is that the curve of the sidecut isn't necessarily an arc of a circle.
post #7 of 11
post #8 of 11
Try Ebay for some of last years models. Some very good prices. I bought Sl:11's 150cm and 157cm on Ebay for about $150 without bindings. The 150's were from Cupolo Sports and had no problems with the order. But look at the Sl:11 thread for some issues on the "World Cup" version.

Found a pair of '03-'04 GS:9's 170cm at my local Garts for $350 with bindings. Probably could have found a better deal on Ebay.

Havn't been on either ski yet. No snow in the Pacific Northwest.

post #9 of 11
Thread Starter 
Is there a big difference between last years SL9/11s and this years? Is it only graphics?
post #10 of 11
All of this year's Atomic Race skis (GS11, 9 and SL11, 9) use the new magnesium power rods/channels, whereas they were titanium last year. I think the stiffness is roughly the same, but the magnesium is lighter.

Also, the tips on the GS:11 and SL:11 have been changed from the left and right arrow-like tips to the curved tips that the 9's had last year.
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanx for the info.
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