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Need Demo Advice on multiple skis

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
I am going to Killington in two weeks and plan to demo some new skis. I will be skiing for six days, so I figure that I will probably try 4 pairs before deciding…

I have done some research and think I know what skis I want to try, but I would like to get some opinions…

First, here’s my info:

6’1”, 275lbs

Advanced skier. Comfortable on the following: Blues, any condition. Blacks w/ minimal crud / bumps. Double blacks if flat / groomed.

I am looking to continue to improve. Don’t care about doing bumps, but want to be more comfortable when they find me. I ski at a ‘reasonable’ speed, and vary from short turns to long ones…

Currently ski on K2 Explorers. Length 183. Bought in 1998.
Lange Banshee Boots.

Also, I already demoed two skis early season at Winter Park Co.

Salomon Scream 10 Hot Pilot
Salomon Pocket Rocket

I definitely liked the Hot Pilot more, but I wanted more platform underfoot. The pocket rocket was nice in the crud and the powder, but I don’t think it will carve on the bulletproof that I usually see in the East…

I tried each of those in length 175, but I think I would like to test shorter this time…

So, here are my choices, in order, so far:

1) Salomon Scream 10 XtraHot Pilot / Length 165 or 175

2) Atomic M: EX / Length 165 or 175

3) Atomic Metron B5 / Length 152, 162, or 172

4) K2 Recon / Length 160, 167, or 174

5) Rossignol B2 / Length 160 or 170

6) Volkl 724 Pro / Length 156, 163, or 170

7) Dynastar Troublemaker / Length 155, 165, or 175

8) Dynastar Legend 8000 / Length 158, 165, or 172

So you can see my dilemma. I have eight skis listed and six days to demo, and I would prefer to demo only four pair, although, I guess I could do five... My biggest problem comes at 4/5. I am starting to think I should demo the B2 instead of the Recon. And I don’t know if it is worth my time to try the Volkls or the Dynastars…

The ones I am leaning towards right now are bolded...

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 35
Is that a typo on your weight? If not, you are looking way too short on some of those skis in my opinion. I'm a fan of the Rossi B2 that you are looking at. I think you will want the MINIMUM length of 176 and probably more likely the 182 with that ski.
post #3 of 35
Thread Starter 
No typo. Former D-Lineman.

One of the guys I know is 6'4" 270 and rocks on a pair of 155s...

I know a few other guys @ 230 who love their Atomic 120 Snowblades...

This is exactly why I'm going to demo... I may even have to try the same ski in two different lengths, like 165 and 175, before I decide.
post #4 of 35
At your size you need really stiff skis or else you will have too little edge control. Even the longest Pocket Rockets would be too little ski. Also, if you get skis that are too small, you will break them down real soon and they will suck.
post #5 of 35
You won't be sorry if you try the recon.....
post #6 of 35
Originally Posted by 74Skier
No typo. Former D-Lineman.

One of the guys I know is 6'4" 270 and rocks on a pair of 155s...

I know a few other guys @ 230 who love their Atomic 120 Snowblades...

This is exactly why I'm going to demo... I may even have to try the same ski in two different lengths, like 165 and 175, before I decide.
Well, that shows what I know. I'm not going to be very helpful because I'm used to off-piste skiing out west. A person needs longer skis for that. I will say, though, I would enjoy watching a 6'4", 270 lb dude ripping it up on a pair of 155's. Those poor ol' skis will have a reverse camber after a couple of runs .
post #7 of 35
Sorry, but you're insane
I'm 145lbs and I ski the B2 at a 170cm

I guess if you're looking for a ski blade type experience, then its good to go short but I dont think the freeride skis you've listed are designed to be used as ski blades.

If I were you, I would definitely try the B2, the volkl pro, and the metron at the very least. Although I understand that you prefer short skis, I would suggest that you try something that fits your weight a little better (perhaps something in the 180-190cm range). Pretty much try to get the longest ski that is available. Even if you aren't used to longer skis, give it a try--it may revolutionize your skiing experience!!

Also, if you get a chance, try the Head Monster i.M 75 sr2 Larger people seem to fall in love with this ski (altho lightweights like me seem to hate it)
post #8 of 35
you are buying into the industry's "increase our volume" pitch of GO SHORT.

that's how they sell NEW stuff to those who have existing working stuff, making us feel our current stuff is TOO LONG.

don't be one of those guys.

at your size it would be ludicrous to ski anything OTHER THAN a full on race stock ski at short lengths.

regular skis are designed for average sized people. you are NOT average sized at 275 lbs.

the largest size made in ANY ski you've listed is what you should try. not the largest you've listed. the LARGEST MADE.
post #9 of 35
i dont know if this is going to help but the metron b5 "real nice" 5'8" 220... i did a demo 2 weeks ago on a 152..the price was way to high "atomic tech said 1300.00 msrp" and almost impossible to find also i dont think they will be on sale anytime soon...i ski last yrs rossi zenith 5 at 170 but i really think you would break them into little pieces
post #10 of 35
You need at least 180 cm, and I would suggest you look at stiffer skis than the ones you've listed.
post #11 of 35
Thread Starter 

Good input

Ok, good input so far. This is the kind of reality check I am looking for.

First a few responses:

I know that many of you might not have any input, since I am looking for a ski that will work in the East.

Also, It is cool to watch a guy that size pull sweeping GS turns on short boards...

And I'm not saying that I prefer shorter skis! I have skied for 5-6 seasons on my K2 Explorer @ 183 and have loved them, but its time for something new..

And the only two other pairs I have tried were 175s, and it was early season at Winter Park, so I had three days of Eastern-like conditions (although it would have been great conditions in the east) and two final days of 6-8 inches of Powder...

So on to more questions:

I don't know if I will be comfortable with something skinnier that 75 waist underfoot...

That is why I looked at the skis I was looking at.

I think that anything above 90 will be too fat for the groomers (Although with my weight, when I tip 'em over they will bend and carve!)

So, what 'stiffer' boards do you suggest.

I don't feel like going into the shops without some kind of opinion. Those guys need to make the sale. I want to find the right skis for me. They just want me to take any pair of skis from them....

Keep the input coming....

And yes, I may be insane... I already know that, so help me out with some suggestions!

post #12 of 35
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by gonzostrike
you are NOT average sized at 275 lbs.

the largest size made in ANY ski you've listed is what you should try. not the largest you've listed. the LARGEST MADE.

I will take that as a compliment...

So, if I go with the longer in those skis, do you have any opinions on the ones that I listed????

post #13 of 35

If this is a pair of skis that you'll be using primarily for Eastern skiing, then I think Gonz's suggestion is a pretty good one. See if you can demo some slalom or GS race skis. They have the guts, so to speak, to handle a heavy load in shorter lengths. True, most aren't going to have 75mm or higher waists, but from the sound of things you're not going to be doing a whole lot of powder or crud skiing. To me, that's the only kind of skiing where wider waists really offer you anything.

My bet would be that your "large" friend who rips on 155's is on some kind of slalom race ski.

IMO, of the skis you listed, I think the M:EX, Recon, B2, Troublemaker, and Legend 8000 are all going to be too soft for you in the lengths you've listed (I don't know anything about Salomons). The Metron B5 sounds like a potentially excellent ski for you because it's designed to be skied short.

Here are a few other suggestions if you can find them:

Volkl Superspeed

Fischer Worldcup SC (and RC if you could find it to demo), RX9, or the 8.6, which is a surprisingly versatile mid-fat that you could certainly ski in a 180 and maybe even get away with a 170. Fischers tend to have a really solid, strong feel to them.

Head i.XRC Chip Super Railflex and Head Worldcup 1.SL CP 13. Heads are also very substantial skis and might work really well with your weight.

Dynastar Omeglass 63 just because I have a pair and everyone in the world ought to experience how much fun these things are on hard snow. 165 is the longest they make.

Good luck and have fun.

post #14 of 35
Demo either Atomics or Volkl's, both have awesome edge grip as well as stiffness for your size

you can play with the lengths to dial in the right fit

I'm 6'1, 195 and I never ski anything less than a 176 length, but you sound like you're commited to skiing even shorter, so if I were you I'd think about getting TWO skis, not just one

if so, do a shorter twin tip - they are more fun and you can have a blast on them (gee, a 275 lb linebacker dropping into the pipe on twintips, now wouldn't THAT be a sight!)

on steeper slopes or in fast, steep GS type turns you'll appreciate the stability of the extra length, nothing shorter than 180

the last thing a guy of your size needs is to do a face plant or get in the back seat and fall over because your skis are too short, your entire season will be over quick! think ACL injury

at your weight and probable strength, if you do go short, also go fat

ask people if Atomic Metron's are right for you, they have a really progressive shape that might work in shorter lengths

good luck and make sure to demo the hell out of anything before buying
post #15 of 35

2) Atomic M: EX

3) Atomic Metron B5



6) Volkl 724 Pro



if you have a chance to demo Blizzard skis, they are big & burly too. any skis that are big & burly (less flexible) will be good choices.
post #16 of 35
Which Stocklis for him, Gonz?
post #17 of 35
that's what I was thinking, but there's such a good chance he'd bend 'em before his skills took hold and got the most out of 'em.
post #18 of 35
Thread Starter 

This was the kind of input that I am looking for.

I am not committed to going short, or to any kind of ski... That's why I'm asking the question here. I'd rather get a s-load of opinions to think about, so I don't get on something that I'm not going to like / or that isn't right for me!

And I am going to find out what my friend (more of a friend of a friend) skis on. You are probably right that it is a GS racer...

Bob, thanks for the other suggestions. I will check them out.

You also metioned HEAD skis... any experience with the Monster series?

And Squaw... Been there with the ACL injury, so that's always a consideration. Third day ever on skis... ACL was a goner... But, I skied the rest of the week, got it fixed, and I'm back & better than ever (that was a long time ago!)
post #19 of 35

ditch the list

Off the list that you've already written it seems that the B5's are really the only one that you ought to put time into demo'ing. I personally haven't tried them out, but rave reviews put them on my list.

As an east coast skier I think that you'd have a real hard time with edge hold etc. on all the other skis listed:

Most of what you have listed are at least mid-fat, which will be softer flexing and wider in the waist. I ski Legend 8000's in 172, wouldn't dream of going shorter and i'm 160lbs. They don't have super terrific edge grip (but they're great for their size)

Pocket Rockets, just not the right ski for you. I don't think the Hot's are either.

The exceptions are the 724 pros and the older R:EX's (came before the M:EX's which bob says are too soft) which are fairly burly skis, but frankly unneeded and not the greatest choice for someone who doesn't ski all mountain/all conditions at an expert level (IMO).

I'm going to see Bob Peters and raise him Atomic SX:B5's and SX:11's
with exception to the Metron B5's I'd stay b/t 170-180 (more toward 180)

My 5 For you:
Volkl Superspeed
Head i.XRC Chip Super Railflex
Dynastar Omeglass 63
post #20 of 35
Fischer RX8, next year's Nordica Hot Rod Top Fuel or Modified.
post #21 of 35
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Bob Peters
If this is a pair of skis that you'll be using primarily for Eastern skiing, then I think Gonz's suggestion is a pretty good one. See if you can demo some slalom or GS race skis. They have the guts, so to speak, to handle a heavy load in shorter lengths. True, most aren't going to have 75mm or higher waists, but from the sound of things you're not going to be doing a whole lot of powder or crud skiing. To me, that's the only kind of skiing where wider waists really offer you anything.

My bet would be that your "large" friend who rips on 155's is on some kind of slalom race ski.
Couple of things:

My friend of a friend uses Fischer C5 in 155...

Yes, this will be all Eastern Skiing. I have only been West once, and since my Western Skiing will be (unfortunately) few and FAR between, I'm demoing/buying w/ East skiing in mind... Also, I would probably do the same as last time and take my boots, but rent/demo skis.

You would be correct about the powder, but not really about the crud... I seem to 'find' the crud... Also, I'm only buying one pair of skis (and probably selling the K2's) so I want to find an all-mountain / all-conditions ski.

I think I will definitely try to Head Monster iM 75. And I had such a good time on the Salomon Hot that I will probably try the Xtra Hot.

Any other thoughts?
post #22 of 35
With your mass, you need a steam-roller of a ski.

You've listed a lot of great brands, but Volkl and Atomic will offer you the most beef. If you're also looking to go short, the Metron B:5 is likely the best fit (the 172 cm, NOT the 152 cm).

In my view, forget the Rossi B2. My wife has them and they're pure magic, for her. Great skis! But, they have a foam core which you'll demolish in about 10 days.

You may also wish to check to see if Salomon has a foam core (also superb skis). If so, I'd pass on those for the same reason.
post #23 of 35
I believe the Xtra Hots are foam as well. I liked the Xtra Hots but I'm only 177 lbs. I agree that the B2's and Xtra Hots are not for you.... expecially for east coast skiing.

I missed it if someone already mentioned it, but the Atomic R:EX is a burly ski and since they stopped making it last year there seems to be some good deals on it. Unfortunately for you, the waist is 84 mm so it might be too wide for your needs. Just a thought.
post #24 of 35
Thread Starter 
Good point on the core structure. I will research that on the skis.

Salomon web-site says that the core of the Xtra Hot is "Combined Power Foam/Wood"...

Not sure how that compares to others... yet...

And yes, since my first post, the B2s are off my list...

And while the R:EX went away, the M:EX has "replaced it" with similar dimensions. The REX was 116 84 108 and the MEX is 118 84 111

And I don't think that the 84 will be too wide for me. My current skis are 75 and I would like to move up a little. Also, I did enjoy the Pocket Rockets, which are 90 underfoot, and I didn't have any problems turning them on edge and making them carve...

I like something stable to bust through the afternoon crud...
post #25 of 35
see if you can find some of the Old Rex they seem to pop up on Ebay new unused. Also look at last seasons R11 puls in a 180. they are stiff and hold an edge on just about anything. The skis the Bob Peters would also be go skis to try. by the way at your size witha little coaching you could make one hell of a downhill racer.
post #26 of 35
For crud busting - nothing beats the M:EX. These skis are formidable. They demolish crud, float in powder and slice on the groomed. Most importantly, they also hold like an ice-pick on eastern boilerplate. Such edge-hold unheard of for an 84 mm ski (underfoot). I love those skis.

They're also beefier than the Metron B:5's, but not as nimble (likely not an issue for you).

I weigh just 200 lbs, and I ski the M:EX's in 175, which does everything I need it to. In your case, the 185's would be recommended, but you could go with the 175's if you desire a shorter ski.
post #27 of 35
Thread Starter 
Utah, Thanks for the laugh about being a racer... One things for sure, If I turn them down the fall line & let em run, I could go scary fast... Gravity is a sure thing!

And Strato, thanks for the confirmation of the MEX... (and Utah of the REX). I spent some time in the shops, last season talking to the tech-heads, and I will do the same this trip... And several shops that carried the REX said the same thing... "You should try the REX, or next season the MEX"...

I think I'm going to stop at several (or all) of the shops on the K access road and see what they have in 03/04 leftovers and also see what they would suggest for this season...

And I looked into Bob's suggestions... I think that I could try a Fischer (maybe the 8.6), but I think that the Superspeed may be too much ski for me.... From what I have read, you need to be precise with those, and I'm not looking to have to 'drive' the ski on every single run down the mountain... I would like to have a ski that I can push hard on some runs, and on runs that I want to just cruise/carve, I don't want it to kick my rear... (I don't ask for too much, do I??? : And the others he suggested seem to be thinner than I was thinking of. (~66-67 waist)... Although, the RX9 at 69 does intrigue me... Maybe I have to test drive at least one thin one to give it a go!

Tooo many skis not enough time or $$$
post #28 of 35
Let me see if I can find Physicsman's thread on physical size and waist width. It might help with this discussion.

84 wide just might not be to wide for eastern conditions for 74skier---assuming the edge grip is decent.

Tom/PM was talking about powder---but the premise hold true ( I think anyway) in any discussion of ski dimension.

Briefly he says to remember that a "wide" waist is relative. I'm 5'5 and 150 in ski boots. Floatation for me might occur on a 70 waist in a 160.

The SAME floatation for 74skier might have to be 90+ and 190 or more in length.

I can't go find it right now---I will later when I have the time.

Just wanted to throw that out for discussion.
post #29 of 35

Ski Recommendations

74 Skier,

Like you, I also an am ex-football player (of no distinction what so ever), and though not as large, I think I can help with this. I’m currently 6’0” 225lbs, so my observations will be exaggerated even more at your size. As a background, I skied quite a bit growing, and did some racing in back in the day (also of little distinction), before college where football took up too much time for that. Like you, I ski the east coast (Stowe) almost exclusively, with maybe one trip per year, either to the Rockies or Europe. Also like you, my budget only has room for 1 pair of skis, which forces us to make some choices as to what we want.

Anyways, when looking for a ski, throw out all of the manufacturers statistics and think about 1) what you want the ski to do, and 2) where you will be skiing it. You stated that you are “looking to continue to improve. Don’t care about doing bumps, but want to be more comfortable when they find me. I ski at a ‘reasonable’ speed, and vary from short turns to long ones…” At Killington (and other resorts in the east), the primary snow surface is hardpack, with a secondary surface of ice. This means that the #1 thing you need to be looking for in a ski is edge hold. For you, edge hold is even more crucial in ski selection, as at 275 pounds, you can generate forces that will simply over power many of the skis on the market. At your weight, you will need a pretty stiff ski to hold an edge on high performance snow. As a general rule, Germanic skis are better for heavier people, while French skis are better for lighter people. In order Atomic, Fischer, Volkl, etc are generally stiffer than Rossi, Dynastar and Salomon, and thus more appropriate for heavier skiers. While you are worried about crud and bumps, I wouldn’t choose a ski for this as the instances in which you encounter them are few and far between, and the characteristics that will help in these instances (wider widths, softer flex) will hurt hard pack performance far more than they will help in the crud. At 275, no matter what ski you choose, you just aren’t going to float on the crud we get here on the east coast, so you might want to re-think your waist width restriction. If you ski more out west, or have room in your budget for a 2nd pair, then you might want to start throwing around the word “floatation,” but unless that’s the case, I wouldn’t base your picks on ski waist width.

If I were you and were only going to get 1 pair of skis, I would look exclusively at “production” race skis, or the 1st tier down due to your strength/weight and skiing conditions. (eg, Atomic GS:11 or SX:11). Don’t be worried that these are “too much” ski for you, as your strength and weight makes these skis seem much softer to you than they seem to an average skier. One of your other concerns, that you don’t want to have to drive the ski on every run, is certainly valid and can be taken into account in a couple of ways. Most race skis are meant to get from edge to edge very quickly, so if you have been reading ski reviews, stay away from the ones that talk about quick edge changes. Also, you could try a racing ski usually used by lighter people and demo that, knowing that your size will “soften” the ski, making it slower in transition. This eliminates the feeling that you need to “drive” the ski all the time. (This is my tried and true method - see recommendation #1 below).

As for specific ski recommendations, in December, Stowe held a “Demo Days” event where season pass holders could demo an unlimited number of skis for a weekend. My roommate and I took advantage of this, and tried a number of skis from a host of manufacturers. He is 5-10, 165 so his observations were vastly different from mine, and more in line with some of the recommendations in this forum. We skied production race skis and high performance all-mountain skis almost exclusively. The following would be my recommendations for you (Not which ones, I liked best. For reference, I ski on the Atomic SL:11, and like it as much/better as any ski that we demo’ed).

#1) Rossignol 9S Oversize (slalom) or 9X: These are slalom/GS race skis, but are usually preferred by lighter people. Since you are much, much heavier and stronger than these people, the ski will not be so quick that you need to drive it every run, but in my experience, it held it’s edge on December Stowe ice as well as the race skis that are more suited to my size, skiing style. These will be heads and shoulders above the other recommendations for you. Since I only can afford 1 pair of skis, I always prefer the slalom skis, because you can always make turns larger than the side cut will allow, but can’t smaller turns than the ski’s radius. This makes them a little more versatile, at the expensive of stability at very high speeds. If you are cruising at “reasonable” speeds, you won’t ever notice it. The 173 length will probably be better for you, but try the 165 if you are convinced that you want to go short.

#2) Volkl P60: Same principle above. My lighter roommate thought that they were very fast edge to edge, I thought that they were less so. I liked this ski a lot, but it will require a little more attention than perhaps you want.

#3) Atomic SX:11: This is Atomic’s All-Mountain ski that is based on the GS:11. It should be stiff enough to hold an edge for a person of your size, but will be more forgiving, so you don’t have to drive it.

As a note, I’ve seen a lot of people in this thread and others promoting the Volkl 6-star and Superspeed. While they are probably good for lighter skiers, I was really disappointed by both of them. They just don’t have the energy to support really heavy skiers. When you step off a ski like the P60 (or the Atomic SLs) the difference is immediately apparent - I had to use a lot more effort in transition getting from turn to turn, and had to be more precise and active with my body position to ensure that they were carving and not skidding. It felt like the ski just did not have the rebound necessary to shoot me into the next turn, and was not stiff enough in torsion for the forces I generated at it’s edge. While precision is also necessary with “race” model skis, the performance of the ski makes this much easier. This is not meant to knock the 6-star, superspeed, and many of the other excellent skis made by Rossi, Dynastar, Salomon and others. I only intend to warn you, that your body type is outside the parameters that many of the skis are designed to operate under, so you personally need to think a little bit harder about the types of skis that would suit you.

Even if you ignore much of what I said, definitely try the Rossi Oversize skis. They are plenty forgiving for advancing skiers, but you will not be disappointed by their performance. Bear in mind, that I’m saying this, not as one who skis on them myself or has some attachment to Rossi (as mentioned above, I ski on Atomics), just as someone who has skied on a bunch of skis, and found a pair that I think matches your stated requirements very well.
post #30 of 35
Thread Starter 

Excellent comments!

Redsox Racer,

First of all, thank you for the thought (and length) that you put into your response.

This is exactly the kind of discussion that I had hoped to generate. I must admit, I analyze (and maybe overanalyze) these kinds of things to death before making a decision, or in this case, before even demoing the skis...

My thoughts have been, while I will surely demo several pairs of skis, there are SOOO many out there now (when I bought my K2 Explorers, it was a the 'beginning' of the mid-fat production and I was a novice skier) that my choices were limited (thankfully!) I have loved my K2s... But now that I want something new, my research has shown me that there are so many choices, that I will never be able to demo them all... AND... If I don't at least narrow down a starting point, I may miss a "class" of skis all together that may, in fact, be the correct 'class' for me...

I think that it may be smart for me to try a few different types or 'classes' of skis to be sure...

When I started this thread, I was focused on skis that were very similar to my current K2s (Mid-fat, all-mountain)

I may want to try the top one or two of that class (maybe the Atomic M:EX and the Head Monster), but also try a slalom/supercross ski like the SX:11 or the RX8/9 or 9X oversize...

Also, Redsox Racer, just so you know... I had started to develop a larger, more comprehesive "I might try these" list... And the SX:11 and 9X oversize were already on that list (with others)... But having people personally 'endorse' them helps me decide which I might want to try (Or at least decide to bring those up with the tech-heads at the shop when they are making their recommendations)

Keep 'em coming! Never too much information.

Oh, and now I am starting to note the number of "large" guys on this board, we could have our own "football team on skis"
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