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Great deals vs. Demoing

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I see this subject brought up quite often. Not necessarily in a direct question, but it's obvious the way in which people are asking for ski suggestions. In todays Ebay society, a lot of people want to jump on that great deal instead of going the tried and true Demo route. It seems it may be more of a trend from those of us who are not in the immediate ski areas and don't want to take any of the few precious days we have demoing skis. Personally, I'm trying to put together a list to demo once I'm able to make it to the slopes. Hopefully I'll get to demo before I to fall prey to the Ebay Monster. So that being said, Whats the best ski

Ok, partially joking. I've asked before and maybe there isn't a perfect ski for my ability/level/desire but a few suggestions would be nice. What I would like is something for off-piste, but not strictly deep powder. I only get a trip or two a year, so I'm at the mercy of the Luck and Timing to find the heavy dumps. I love trees as well, so an occasional quick turn may be needed. I'm coming off a pair of 10ex's and loved them. Unfortunately I bought a little long, but still liked how they skied.

I've heard good things about the Fischer BigStix, so Gonz if you read this, I'll take any opinions you have on them. I've had good luck with Sollies in the past, but read a lot of posts that they haven't completely fixed the core break down of the Pocket Rockets over time. Line Darksides seem to get good reviews, but mainly seem to read from the maggot crowd. I don't plan on doing any triple 1080 fakie inverted rodeo tail stalls off a 80 footer. Of course if i have a solid twin tip, I'll play around some. And it seems that Volant is still the Hummer of the ski lines. Heavy, cuts through everything, but a little lacking on the quick stuff.

Sorry for the lengthy post to once again ask opinions, but this is what I've tried to narrow my choices to once I hit the hill for demoing. Thanks for any opinions/reviews.
post #2 of 6
I'll give you 2 lists to consider:

Good Current Deals on Previous Years Skis:

Atomic REX
Dynastar Inspired by Nobis or Bigs (same ski just different models)
Nordica Beast-In '03/'04 it was called the 12tt. In '02/'03 it was called the 92tt.
Solli X Hots
Volkl's AXE 4

Current Year Skis:

Dynastar's Legend Series (8000, 8800, and Pro)
Fishers Bigstix 8.6
K2's Recon and Chief
Pocket Rockets
post #3 of 6
Good question. I personally buy a decent amount of stuff off the net these days or get deals on used gear from people I know. I bought a pair of xtra hots last year for $325 with one day of use (no bindings), from a buddy that formed them and didn't like 'em. But I had demoed them and knew I liked them. This year I bought 3 pairs (working on a 4th) off the forums and off ebay, all used, and that had not demoed. A $200 pair, a $250 and a $21 (yes $21). Now I'm on the verge of getting a $100 pair of pretty clean volkl snow rangers. Granted, I don't buy new (this years) gear.....too much money for too little improvement over stuff that is a couple years old.....hell, I may like the older stuff better anyway.

In general, if you know generally what you're getting into, I think you will be satisfied with your money spent. I didn't demo some of my most favorite pairs of skis, they just turned out to be awesome. I do, however, demo whenever I can, just to check out what is going on with the new stuff.
post #4 of 6
I've had mixed results buying 'good deals' w/o demoing. Sometimes I end up with something I don't like, other times they exceed my expectations. The good thing about getting stuff at a cheap price is that you can usually unload them for the same price as you got them for if you don't like them.

Demoing before buying usually means you're going to be buying during peak season and paying premium $$. You do however end up with a ski that you're going to be more happy with.
post #5 of 6

Take the good deal, then demo to buy later

What I usually do is demo a couple of times/year, while I still have my current ride. Then, 1.5 years later, I look for the ski I demoed on sale & buy it. In the meantime, since I got a good deal on the skis I've got and I keep them in good condition, I sell them for only slightly less than the new skis cost. I do this about every 2-3 years, and end up paying about $125 out of pocket for the new rides.
post #6 of 6
I have never demoed a ski that I later bought. This is pribmarily due to how I choose to spend my money. I have demoed a number of skis and owned a lot over the years. Skis tend to fall into some general categories-you need to understand what the manufacturer is trying to do with the particular ski. Then you need to pick what category of ski you want. Epic ski is a good place for figuring that out as are other places on the web (there is a past thread for ski evaluations). If you are not too sure what category you want-talk with people. Personally I think the subjective conditions negate a lot of demo evaluation-tune, my mood, physical and mental atitude, and snow conditions. For me it takes a while to really feel out a ski. All that being said I have bought all of my gear (for the past 16 years that I have not had pro forms) at ski shop sales or over the net. There are no bad skis out there today-there are ski categories which do not fit some people. Further since skis are a compromise between trying to minimize vibration, provide stiffness and give rebound energy some manufacturers fit some people differently. The one place I would encourage you to step up is in a boot purchase. Then again I ski a San Marco custom foam boot I purchased for $120 new on line...
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