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Review: Fischer RX8

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
After coming to terms with the dramatic changes in ski technology/size/shape, I made the leap out of my old 203cm Volkl Rentigers into my brand new 170cm Fischer RX8s.

Yesterday was the first day out. While I didn't encounter a vast array of conditions (mostly groomers, bumps and hard pack), I must say these skis are unbelievable. After an hour or so, I knew I was really onto something here. Long turns, short turns, slow, fast, easy turns, frantic turns, you name it. I had no idea a ski of this size could perform at this level. Just let 'em do their thing.

I would strongly recommend them to experienced skiers looking for a versatile, lively ski. Thanks to members of this forum for your feedback and insight.
post #2 of 21
I agree. I demo-ed these skis last week and loved them, too. I'm making the transition from straight skis and these were the first shaped skis I've tried that have blown me away (tried the Dynastar SkiCross 10 and Volkl 5 Star last year, but neither impressed me that much). I skied the RX8's only on groomers, and they excellently handled all types of turns, but were truly phenomenal making slalom turns in the fall line on the steeps.

Unfortunately, I didn't get to ski them in the bumps and will probably have to demo them again to see how they handle them. If moguls aren't the skis strong suit, I'll be bummed, since they're such fun on the frontside.
post #3 of 21
mogulj,

How'd they do in the bumps?

I'm looking for a fatter, shorter ski to use all mtn. I currently have some 184mm Volkl G3's that are great on the groomers, but... I'm 5-10.5 and 175 lbs. How long should I look at in the RX8?
post #4 of 21
Will demo them again next week and let you know. If anyone can give any details about the RX8 in the moguls, I'd love to hear them. The skis got high scores for bumps in SKI magazine, yet, oddly, in last year's review issue, they were described as "sluggish and unwieldy in moguls." Apparently, the upgraded Railflex system makes a world of difference.

By the way, I'm 5'10 1/2" and 160 lbs, and I skied them in a 165. That's a big drop from my 203's, but I felt totally stable on the ski and that's the size I would purchase. My guess, lowphat, is that a 165 or 170 would work for you.

Also, I think these skis are best for level 8 and 9 skiers. If you fall into that category, these skis will do whatever you want them to do. Not sure how well they'd work for less confident skiers.
post #5 of 21
Mogulj, I demoed last year's RX8 and thought they were as good in bumps as the steep flats (and that is very, very good!). If you are referring to last year's Railflex to this year's Railflex II, there is no difference in user performance. The only signficant difference I am aware of between the two is that the RFII uses less metal in the rail/binding interface. Last year's Railflex had some issues with the metal tabs breaking off if installed improperly. I think the difference between the two SKI magazine reviews is another example of biased reporting.

If you are still demoing skis, you might want to try the Dynastar Skicross 9 (again). I bought that ski this year after considering a couple of choices including the RX8. The SC9 might be a bit more versatile. Quick edge to edge, great in fall line turns, proficient in a variety of turn shapes, great ice hold and surprisingly stable at high speeds. I thought the SC10 is a bit too stiff to ski bumps easily, especially at our weight (I also weigh 160-165 lbs).
post #6 of 21
I'll keep the Skicross 9 in mind. I probably didn't even give the SC10 a fair chance, since it was my first day ever on shaped skis. I think it takes a few days of skiing on shaped skis to really fall in love with them.

Was planning on trying the Rossignol B1's tomorrow. I hear they're great in the bumps. But they probably won't ski the steeps like the RX8. I haven't skied gates since high school, but the RX8's made me long to do so again. At the top of a fairly steep pitch, I'd just picture a slalom course in front of me, and then made the skis do my bidding. Loads of fun!
post #7 of 21
I demoed the RX8 a few days ago for the first time. I'm 5'8" and 154 pounds, an average skier. My usual skis are Elan S12 Fusion in 160 cm length. The shortest length of RX8 available to me was 165 cm. Conditions were some really good new ungroomed snow - about 6" to 8" - on top of some unpredictable areas of ice and/or gravel. Some less traveled trails were good natural snow with no ice or gravel.

These skied short, it seemed - quicker, shorter, easier turners in 165 cm than my S12's in 160 cm. I like them and just wonder if they'd be even better for a person of my weight, strength and ability in 160 cm length. For whatever reason, though, they didn't seem to glide as fast as skis on the feet of some other skiers (like the Atomic pro rep on 170 cm Metron). Nevertheless, I'll be thinking further about the RX8 and other Fischers. They have some interesting products, including the to-be-released AMC 79.
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by moguljunkie
.

Was planning on trying the Rossignol B1's tomorrow. I hear they're great in the bumps. But they probably won't ski the steeps like the RX8.
The Rossi to compare to the RX8 is the 9S Oversize. I demoed last year's model, and they were an absolute blast carving through the through the bumps as fast as I could get them to go.
post #9 of 21
The RX8 is a versatile high performance all mountain ski that works just fine in bumps, and has bomb proof edge grip on hard groomed snow. I don't know why the Ski mag tester would report that they were unwieldy in bumps.

I am skiing the '04/'05 Railflex model in 170cm length. I am 5'10" 165lb. Last season I had the RX8 in 165cm, non Railflex. I like the 170's better because they feel more stable to me, and I don't notice the slight increase in turn radius. Because they are 66mm under the foot, I would say that the RX8 is biased towards the groomed snow/packed-out end of the all mountain spectrum, but when skiing them in powder and crud they haven't left me wishing for wider skis.

If carving short to medium radius turns on a ski that you can take pretty much anywhere is your thing, the RX8's are a great choice.

Disclosure: I am a ski area pro rep for Fischer
post #10 of 21
JimL, that's funny... I dropped down from 03/04 170cm non-RailFlex RX8s to 165cm RailFlex II for my RX8s this year! I'm 180-185lbs, too. Goes to show--everyone needs to demo! I wonder if it's more the binding?
post #11 of 21
I took the RX8 in 170 cm out today. They have taken over top place in my demo list so far. I'm 165 lbs, 5'8.5" tall. I had my daughter with me today, and another friend along for some of the time, so I wasn't able to rip all day long, but I did get a few quick spurts through what passes for steep bumps in Ontario Canada. Funny thing, I don't mind : when you are led down by blue square signs for a promissing run, only to find the blue run closed and the only way down left open is the most difficult run at the mountain: , but my daughter seems strangely upset by it: .

The RX8s work just fine in the bumps. They are NOT unweildy. Comparing them to last years 9S Oversize, I have to admit that were I playing video-game-like "bump tetris" in very closely packed small bumps, I might, just might, be able to make more turns per minute with the Rossis, but not by much and the Fishers felt better doing it. The RX8s also felt a lot better going at faster speeds; they felt smoother, and somehow more secure. High speed carved turns of small and medium radius is definately the strong suit for these skis. If I were racing through bumps, I would be happiest on the RX8s.

Though I didn't get a chance to take them up to insane speeds, I had them up to what most people would regard as at least reckless . They will easily handle any speed I can remember having seen anyone ski on a ski hill outside of a closed dh or sg race course. It is true that you would want more edge on the snow if your were racing a sg or maybe even a gs, but for recreational skiing these are all you need. While they may not carve quite as smooth a long radius turn at sg speeds as a dedicated LR ski, they will scarve higher speed LR turns just fine, and they carve everything else like a knife through soft butter.

They felt really solid and smooth, blasting over scraped off ice, turning in the scraped up piles of snow, turning on hardpack, and ripping through the steeper blue and black runs with only tiny bumps using "terrain ignoration". In fact their high-speed feel puts them a step above the Rossi 9S IMHO.
The RX8s can also make nice smooth turns when you are going slow! No matter what speed, fast or slow these skis feel good. Mind you, you have to make an awful lot of short radius turns not to pass some of the people you are supposed to be following. It is very hard for me to resist the temptation to say "enough!", and let these skis run.

Just a note: these skis seem very eager to turn. You might think that they need to be turning all the time, and I admit they are happiest when on edge, but they can run straight. I noticed when straight-lining the beginner hill at the end of a run (saving momentum for the long run-out to the other lift) that every little terrain irregularity tended to make them want to start a turn, not forcefully, more like a puppy begging to go here or there all the time. Putting more weight on the fronts did not help BUT putting your weight more to the rear in this situation will make them straighten up and let you relax.

It was a treat to actually make some turns in snow for a change (Last two days, all I found was ice and hardpack). My daughter had trouble in the bumps of "snow"; she can ski the ice just fine.

PS. I noticed on my way up the stairs to the bar at the end of the day that my weight had doubled during the day, and I only had a burger and poutine for lunch: .
post #12 of 21
JimL,

As a Fischer rep, I'd like your advice.

I'm going to demo the RX8's in Park City in a few days, and based on everything I've read, I expect I'll love (and purchase) them. My question for you is whether to go with 165cm or 170. I'm 5'10" and between 165 and 168 pounds. While I love snappy, short radius carving turns, I also like medium radius turns and long radius GS style turns. I'm leaning towards the 165's. I don't want to sacrifice anything on short radius turns, and I think the 165's will be stable enough for me even at high speed. Thoughts?
post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by gkorn
JimL,

As a Fischer rep, I'd like your advice.

I'm going to demo the RX8's in Park City in a few days, and based on everything I've read, I expect I'll love (and purchase) them. My question for you is whether to go with 165cm or 170. I'm 5'10" and between 165 and 168 pounds. While I love snappy, short radius carving turns, I also like medium radius turns and long radius GS style turns. I'm leaning towards the 165's. I don't want to sacrifice anything on short radius turns, and I think the 165's will be stable enough for me even at high speed. Thoughts?
gkorn, I'm not JimL (I'm sure he'll answer this), but I'll put my two cents in... I skied the 170 last year and dropped to the 165 RailFlex this year (I'm 6', 180). I think you'll find the 165 plenty of ski. I'd recommend demoing the 165 first and working on your longest-radius, fastest skiing and see what you think. I bet you'll love them.

If you're not sure, move up to the 170 and see... There isn't a huge difference, but the 165 is 13m and the 170 is 14m because the dimensions are the same.
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by gkorn
JimL,

As a Fischer rep, I'd like your advice.

I'm going to demo the RX8's in Park City in a few days, and based on everything I've read, I expect I'll love (and purchase) them. My question for you is whether to go with 165cm or 170. I'm 5'10" and between 165 and 168 pounds. While I love snappy, short radius carving turns, I also like medium radius turns and long radius GS style turns. I'm leaning towards the 165's. I don't want to sacrifice anything on short radius turns, and I think the 165's will be stable enough for me even at high speed. Thoughts?
I am not JimL, but would recommend the 165cm for you. I am about the same size and feel the 165cm RX8 is the most fun length. I like this ski better than the RX9-snappier, quicker, and more fun. You can ski it all over the mountain, although it may be a tad short for deep snow in 165. It will run, but I still prefer the S12 (not as turny) for more of a hybrid SL/GS feel. If you are looking at Fischer and want a ski that runs well, check out the RX9 as well. The RX8 is a true all-mountain slalom in my book, and would be in my quiver if I had more money. For now, race slaloms will have to suffice...
post #15 of 21
ssh and dawg, thanks for the advice. i've read posts by both of you on other threads, and you have been very helpful. i'm glad you affirmed my leaning toward the 165's. i can't wait to demo them, and i'm sure you'll see an email from me next tuesday that i brought a pair home with me.

ssh, we previously exchanged some posts on the B5's. you'll remember that i said i love the way they carve, but was a little disappointed skidding turns on the steeps. i'm wondering whether the B5's would be good as my back-ups; something i could use when it really dumps and i'm going to be in soft snow the whole time. good idea, or is the B5 too close to the RX8 to make it a good companion?
post #16 of 21
Gkorn,

I weigh in at 165lb, 5'10". This season I'm on 170 cm RX8's with Railflex. Last year I was on 165's without Railflex. I find the 170 a bit more stable for bashing the crud, otherwise performance is about the same for me in either length. I don't really notice the difference in turn radius. If you have a chance to demo, try both lengths.

Jim
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by gkorn
ssh, we previously exchanged some posts on the B5's. you'll remember that i said i love the way they carve, but was a little disappointed skidding turns on the steeps. i'm wondering whether the B5's would be good as my back-ups; something i could use when it really dumps and i'm going to be in soft snow the whole time. good idea, or is the B5 too close to the RX8 to make it a good companion?
Well, that's what I'm doing this year!

Watch for a "further review" of the RX8 after I ski on them next.
post #18 of 21

bought em without a demo...

it's so true, every positive word about the rx8 just rings with truth.
took a huge leap of faith and picked up a pair of 165cm rx8's at mt. pilchuck in everett..best people!
i'm 5'8, 190lbs and still a little too aggro for my age...(so sad)
anyway, no question...these are da bomb. if u spend most of your time on-piste, the rx8 is a "god-maker"! you'll feel it right away. they are a part of me, if i think it and they will do it! my biggest problem is "trust", i've got to learn to trust these skis cause they will take care of me (or you, if your lucky enough to ride a pair). so now i'm 'learning' to blow off all apprehension, reservation and just go for it all the time! it's like a new religion: if you believe, miracles will happen!
have fun!!!
jammin
post #19 of 21
Are there more than one RX8? Seems to me I saw RX8 and RX8FTi in the rack the other day. Are these different models of this year or was one from last year?
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by learn2turn
Are there more than one RX8? Seems to me I saw RX8 and RX8FTi in the rack the other day. Are these different models of this year or was one from last year?
I'm not sure what you saw. There is, however, both a railflex and a non-railflex RX8. The '05's are orange and black and the '04's are red and black (at least in the US).
post #21 of 21
FTi refers to Frequency Tuning which is a vibration control feature. All RX8's have this.

Jim
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