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When to purchase new equipment?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I am a beginner skier and I am taking some lessons this week and the weeks to follow. I plan on purchasing my own equipment eventually. I was wondering when the best time of year to purchase from a local shop is? Do you think the Pre-Season sales are the best, the after season sales or after Christmas? I already missed the pre-season and I was thinking of waiting until after Christmas, but I know things will be picked over. Then again I am a beginner so I could wait until the end of season sales or wait and purchase something over the summer at the pre season sales.
post #2 of 15
Hi R.V. & welcome to Epic.

With a little product knowledge, a buyer can find bargains from New Years to Thanksgiving. Bargain hunters usually focus on last years gear at closeout prices.

What is your size (weight & height) and where do you ski. Are you athletic? Do you like speed or not? Long turns or short turns? Do you ski ice, groomed runs, natural snow? Do like to shop on-line? at retail?

I'll give you a few tips, please tell me more.

Cheers,

Barrettscv
post #3 of 15
Invest in boots. Try skis.
post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 
I am 35 years old 5'11" and weigh 185# I am fairly athletic as well. I thought about buying boots first, but my local resorts won't let us rent just skis. I am guessing I will mostly be skiing ice/groomed as I will be skiing mostly Liberty and Whitetail in PA/MD boarder.
post #5 of 15
Without a doubt boots should be your first priority. Don't scrimp on this. Go to a good boot fitter and get set up with the right boot and the right fit. This is the most important step. You can rent/demo skis for a while. Most local shops seem to have the best deals in the spring. Otherwise, nos skis (new old stock) as was already mentioned is usually available year round if you don't mind having last year's (or the year before's) model.
post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Now I just need to find a good bootfitter in the MD/VA/DC/PA area. I travel to all of these areas on a weekly basis, so any of them will work for me.
post #7 of 15
A lot of places still have 2004 skis and boots available. I was at my local sports authority in Boston and they had more old skis than new model ones. I wouldn't worry about things being picked over. What I would suggest is to demo skis at the mountains until you find a brand/model you really like. Then you can search stores and the web until you find what you want.

Quote:
Originally Posted by River Hill
I am a beginner skier and I am taking some lessons this week and the weeks to follow. I plan on purchasing my own equipment eventually. I was wondering when the best time of year to purchase from a local shop is? Do you think the Pre-Season sales are the best, the after season sales or after Christmas? I already missed the pre-season and I was thinking of waiting until after Christmas, but I know things will be picked over. Then again I am a beginner so I could wait until the end of season sales or wait and purchase something over the summer at the pre season sales.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
I am sure the Sports Authority's have tons of skis, but I want to get fitted by a professional. I have heard of a few horror stories from guys trying to save a dime and picking up equipment at those discount chains.

Don't get me wrong I want to save money, but I am willing to pay for quality and most importantly good service. I just don't want to be ripped of by my local ski shop. I hope to build a relationship with whomever I purchase my equipment from as I have two kids and a wife who like to ski/snowboard and they rent equipment now. I am just starting to get into it and love it.
post #9 of 15
Really, buy boots now. If you have a pretty average foot, you might get by just fine at big box retailer, but any oddities, and we all have a few, will be better served by a proper boot fitter. This purchase should be dictated not by what they have in stock nor brand, but rather fit.

As to ski's, DO NOT buy a set of begineer skis. They will be quickly outgrown, especially at your weight. That is not meant as a jab, as I, in fact weigh even more. First, try to get an idea of what really lights your fuse. Do you want to make giant arcing turns down blue groomers, jib in the park, snap off short arcs, play in the bumps, or ply bottomless powder; albeit the last isn't likely with your location. Once you have a better idea of what you like about skiing, blow the $20 on realskiers.com, and plumb the equipment reviews, especially those from 1-3 years ago. Also, ask questions here. You should be able to quickly build a list of likely candidates.

Although our local ski hill does a great job, they don't have any kind of demo program. Haven't had enough scratch the last couple of years to afford a trip out west, where demos are more common. Not to mention, a ski that I might love in soft western conditions might not be near as fun in the mid-western ice that I usually ski. This year, I did the following.

For less than the price of one spanking new set, I found 2 pairs of decent used skis. I bought a really nice pair of 4 yr old Atomic 9:18's (binding included) at the local hill, ski patrol, fund raising swap for $175. And, just last month, I scored a primo 3 year old set of Volkl Vertigo Motions (also with integrated binding) from a seller here for $200. The Atomics are OK, just not quite beefy enough for my 210lbs, but the Motions suit me to a T. At the price I paid, I should be able to flip the Atomics with little to no loss. Net gain, a nice use set of high end skis, that I should be able to ride for the next 3 years of 15 day seasons. And, if I keep them nice, I might even be able to get $50-75 for them at the end of that period. Skiing is possible for the economically challenged if you don't have to have the latest and greatest.

I've seen a lot of 2-4 year old gear sold on this site for very reasonable dollars. Most sellers are generally pretty up front if asked if the ski they are selling might be appropriate to the task and purchaser.

Jump in, the snow is fine.
post #10 of 15
look for a bootfitter near you in this thread:
http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=3986

a lot of people have had good luck with the shops listed at bootfitters.com - but, as with all non-personal recommendations, YMMV.

I've never had to do this, but if I were in a new area, "didn't know anyone," and needed to find a local bootfitter, I would probably seek out a local racing league (even a "beer league" would work) - and start asking for recommendations.

J
post #11 of 15
Thread Starter 
From the reading it looks like I have two good Bootfitter near me. Pro Fit in Leesburg, and the Ski Center in DC.
post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by River Hill
I thought about buying boots first, but my local resorts won't let us rent just skis.
I can't speak for Liberty, but Whitetail offers ski only demos in their ski shop (not the rental shop). I demoed skis there 2 seasons ago. I know there are others here who may be able to give you more info.
post #13 of 15
From experience over here in Europe there's two moments really good for buying the bargains. November/December and March/April.

I second the advice on getting boots first. However if you really have never skied, it might be better to get some hours in before putting down serious money on getting boots fitted.

Honestly boot fitting is considered somewhat of a holy grail on this forum. Although it is a neccesity for very high level skiers and those with difficult feet, it need not be for a beginner/intermediate.

You can find boots that simply fit well and suit your level, needing minimal adjustments or none at all.

Just follow the guidelines to fitting boots given elsewhere on this forum and also follow these rules:

-
post #14 of 15

Oops, the boss walked in

Don't get hung up on brands
Don't worry about model years
post #15 of 15
Thread Starter 
Since I am going into this as a beginner, brands don't matter to me. Just fit and feel.
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