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Atomic SL:9 question

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I never thought I would say this... ,



Is a 160cm Atomic SL:9 too long for my daughter?



My daughter is a 140 Lb collage coed in Vermont who only skis about 15 days a year. She had been using an Atomic 9:22 Jr in a 170cm length. She is a solid carver, like blues and easier blacks. She likes Nastar type speed.



My son has outgrown his Atomic SL:9. Should I hand them over to her?



Has any 140 to 150 Lbs skier used the 160cm SL:9?



Your comments would be appreciated!



Barrettscv
post #2 of 15
I weigh the same as your daughter and I was looking at the SL9 myself recently but my local Atomic dealer reckoned I would not be able to get the most out of the ski being a lightweight guy. He steered me towards demoing the Atomic ST11 and Dynamique VR27 instead.
I ended up buying the ST11 in 160 length in the end. A friend of mine went for the VR27 and were both very happy with our choices.
post #3 of 15
It sounds like she has a pair of skis to demo and find out if she likes them. I would think if she likes medium and longer GS type turns they may work out well for her. A shorter pair would probably be better for SL turns.

I have a pair in 160 as well but I'm 6' 180lbs. I do not find them to be an overly burly ski. Just a really fun hyper carving ski that can make any length turn I want and hold an edge on ice at medium plus speeds.
post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hi RR,

Yes, I think this "hand me down" is not going to work .

I did the informal flex test on the SL:9, a Volkl Gamma Supersport 168cm, and a K2 Mach SL 151cm and the flex of the Atomic is 33% more than the Volkl and 50% more than the K2.

My test consists of elevating the tips and tails above the floor and having my 140 Lbs wife stand on the skis. The load produced about 110mm of deflection in the K2; the Volkl was deflected about 100mm and the Atomic deflected 75mm. I think the Atomic requires about 175 Lbs, or a lot of G force, to carve a turn.

Best regards,

Barrettscv
post #5 of 15
I'm 5' 5" and 140lbs and level 8 skier and ski the SL-9 in a 160cm. It is still my favorite ski in a large quiver of ski's. It is fantastic on the groomers and even performs great off piste.

Should be a lot of fun for her. If she races tight courses, the 150cm may be sligthly better but the 160cm will be more fun free skiing.

JonnyMo
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JonnyMo
I'm 5' 5" and 140lbs and level 8 skier and ski the SL-9 in a 160cm. It is still my favorite ski in a large quiver of ski's. It is fantastic on the groomers and even performs great off piste.

Should be a lot of fun for her. If she races tight courses, the 150cm may be sligthly better but the 160cm will be more fun free skiing.

JonnyMo
Maybe, for the cost of a binding adjustment, I should let her try the ski. I would rather give it a familiar home than listing it on eBay.

Barrettscv
post #7 of 15
Among other things, I have a pair of SL9s in the oddball 170 length, but I'm a good bit bigger than your daughter.

Just a few thoughts, some apropos of others' posts above

- Yeah, I'll agree with the others, that there's a real good chance she'd like it. Conceivably, she might (or might not) like a 150 better, but given that you have the 160s, that's not really the issue. It sounds like it fits her type of skiing pretty well, actually.

- With a c. 11m sidecut, it's not going to be ideal for doing long GS turns. It's a reasonably versatile ski, but it's at the tons-of-sidecut end of the range. You probably know that already.

- The binding adjustment is very easy. You can do it yourself, if you're even modestly capable with tools. You should have a #3 pozi screwdriver, though.

- I'd be surprised if you have to be that big to use an SL9. If so, who's the SL11 for?
post #8 of 15
barretsvc, Yeah, the SL9 does feel to be a ver poweful ski compared to others i've sniffed round. I remember when we were playing compressing them on one end and then letting go, the SL9 was certainly jumping about compared to the other skis.

I was worried that with them being so stiff, our local race training courses which are rediculously tight, sometimes I would end up having to skid a lot of the turns if I was unable to compress the ski with ease to really tighten up the turns in a hurry.

I like your method for testing the skis flex Next time i'm in the market for some skis i'm looking forward to the look on the retailers face when I walk in with blocks of wood
post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rockyrobin
I like your method for testing the skis flex Next time i'm in the market for some skis i'm looking forward to the look on the retailers face when I walk in with blocks of wood
RR,

I've done exactly that. When my kids and I were looking for skis, we followed a simple rule; "if we can't bend 'em (using the test) we can't carve em"! It helped them transition from kids gear to Jr race gear to adult gear. It now helps determine ski model and length by eliminating the very stiff or very soft models that need to be avoided.



Best,

Barrettscv
post #10 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by sjjohnston
- I'd be surprised if you have to be that big to use an SL9. If so, who's the SL11 for?
Yeh, the SL:11 is difficult to rationalize out side of USSA racing. It has a FIS sidecut that is as long as the GS:9, go figure. Plus it must be crazy stiff.

Barrettscv
post #11 of 15
I ski the SL:9 in a 170cm (I'm 160lbs). My wife skis the SL:9 in a 150cm (she's 120lbs).
We both like this ski quite a bit. At our weights and in these lengths the SL:9 is a surprisingly versatile ski.

BTW, your flex test is interesting to see the static deflection of a weighted ski and how it compares to others in this regard. However, I'm not sure you should rule out a stiff ski based on this test because in use the dynamic deflection is going to be far greater that anything you measure statically. Especially true if you are carving.
post #12 of 15
When the predecessor of the SL:9 first appeared as a next season´s ski (it was the 9:12 for 2001/2002) a group of us was testing it on a groomed slope and firm snow.
All five good skiers were happy though they were a pretty variable portfolio:
- an ex-racer who had been the national champ only three years before
- a coach - one of the best FIS Masters racers worldwide
- a 275lbs. expert freerider
- myself (187lbs.)
- a lady ski teacher (about 130lbs.)
The ski was pretty stiff (the current SL:9 must be considerably softer). How´s that we all found it so good?
My reasoning is that its shape and small radius (we had 160cm/115-65-100/11m which was pretty revolutionary back then) let the lady "ride the radius" and cruise effortessly without having to bend it much while the big guys could arc it and use the pop.
If there were some bumps she wouldn´t have been that happy, I´m sure. It seems that if you stay on groomers such a ski works for a wide variety of skiers including light ones.
post #13 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by checkracer
When the predecessor of the SL:9 first appeared as a next season´s ski (it was the 9:12 for 2001/2002) a group of us was testing it on a groomed slope and firm snow.
All five good skiers were happy though they were a pretty variable portfolio:
- an ex-racer who had been the national champ only three years before
- a coach - one of the best FIS Masters racers worldwide
- a 275lbs. expert freerider
- myself (187lbs.)
- a lady ski teacher (about 130lbs.)
The ski was pretty stiff (the current SL:9 must be considerably softer). How´s that we all found it so good?
My reasoning is that its shape and small radius (we had 160cm/115-65-100/11m which was pretty revolutionary back then) let the lady "ride the radius" and cruise effortessly without having to bend it much while the big guys could arc it and use the pop.
If there were some bumps she wouldn´t have been that happy, I´m sure. It seems that if you stay on groomers such a ski works for a wide variety of skiers including light ones.
I'm starting to think that my 200 Lbs son should stay with the ski. I assumed that a bigger guy would begin to find the ski unstable at anything above ski school speeds, your observations provide an interesting point. My son also has other skis for GS speeds and softer snow. I'll let him decide in November, weather permitting.

Thanks

Barrettscv
post #14 of 15
Just to throw my hat into the ring, I think that as long as your daughter is a fairly competent skier, she will probably enjoy the SL:9 a lot. I have the 03/04 version in 150cm, which is really shorter than I should have got (I'm 5'9, 150), but it's still a blast to ski. At 150 it gets rather squirelly at high speed and/or longer radius turns, but it still does both quite well. I think in a 160 length, it would be very good for your daughter. Lots of fun if you want quick edge to edge short radius turns, but equally good at medium to long radius and just cruising along.

Since you already have the ski, I would suggest remounting the bindings and letting her try it. I'd be willing to be she'll love them.
post #15 of 15
I am 5'9.5" and weigh 144 lbs and have the SL9 160 from a couple years ago. My opinion is she will do fine with those. It is a very fun, energetic ski, but for me it does not have the ice hold of the stiffer SL11. It is a great fall-line carver. The 160 will be more stable in free skiing than the 150, and if she is coming from a 170, the 150 may feel too short. At high speeds, I consider the 160 just a bit squirrelly (R11m).
I have not tried the latest SL9 which I am told is slightly stiffer than the older SL9.
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