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Ski purchase - did I do the right thing?

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I've gotten so much great advice here - so much that I'm losing track of everything. Going to start fresh with a more focused question:

I just purchased my first pair (long-time renter) at a deep discount from a going-out-of-business sale. Would've preferred to demo, of course - but I've been doing a lot of research here, so I pulled the trigger on Volkl AC3's @177.

I'm 5'11" & 165#; strong intermediate, maybe even a little advanced, but certainly not expert. Moving from old-school to carving. All my experience is Western (Alaska, Alberta, Oregon, California). Foreseeable future will be CA & OR, maybe WA & BC. Ski mostly blues, but blacks don't fluster me - if it's printed on the map, I'll ski it. Looking to get more polished and aggressive in future.

I recently demoed the AC2 @ 170. Loved it, yet found it kinda tame - both in character and length. From that, and my reading here, I triangulated on AC3 @ 177. Kinda makes sense, but then again, that's two big changes with no new demo. Also, it was raining when I tried the AC2 - at first I thought it was good to test when conditions are "brutal"; but then I thought, maybe the soft, compressible snow was making it easier on me?

So whatch'y'all think? Will I be patting myself on the back, or kicking myself in the rear? Which reminds me: FWIW, my legs are just a wee bit long relative to my height .

Thanks to all who waded thru this! And thanks for all the great advice - past, present & future!
post #2 of 16
Sounds like you made a good educated guess.

The AC2 has a wood cell versus a Sensorwood core so the AC3 will feel stiffer.

I'm sure you will love them.
post #3 of 16
I think the 177 will be a bit long for you. But, it's a nice ski. Just be prepared for them not to be as nice to ski as they would be for you in a 170.
post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
It's a final sale, but they're still in plastic - think another shop might be willing to exchange? Or would it be too presumptuous to even ask?
post #5 of 16
Actually, they might. The longer one is better for bigger, more aggressive folks, so probably selling pretty well.
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Hmmm.... I think I need some face time with SierraJim. It's a bit of a drive, but worth it I'm sure. Wanted to buy from him, but couldn't say no to 40% off. Plan to make it up to him in other gear!
post #7 of 16
If it is possible, the 170 would be a better fit I think which is based on me being your approximate height and weight and also having demoed the ski.

If it is not possible, the 177 will still be skiable for you so don't beat yourself to death over it. It will just be a little more demanding.
post #8 of 16
I'm 5'7", 170#, and demoed both lengths on Saturday.

While the 177 was skiable and even decent in the bumps, I think the 170 was a better fit for me on the East Coast.

If you ask me the added length would be beneficial to you down the line if you are skiing in the Pacific Northwest.

This is coming from someone who skis on 160s and 162s so you know the 177s are doable.

Hope this helps.
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone so far - and Scalce, I must've read your reviews front to back about 7 times last night! (once for every centimeter in question...) Think I'll try to swap for 170 just to be safe, but if I can't, your review inspired me to just appreciate what 177 has to offer.
post #10 of 16
Interesting that noone has asked him how he skis, how he would like to ski? and what kind of conditions he is interested in sking, Looks like he skis western mountains mostly. PNW and Sierra's have primarily soft snow.

Short skis suck out here. You want the length to keep stable.

My assumption is that you got these @ a real good price, and that was important to you.

So you have a ski that allot of people were raving about 2 years ago. The length is not long and not short. (A comprimise)

Don't fret the purchase, and if they seem a bit grabby have them detuned a bit more.
post #11 of 16
I agree - "Run what you brung"
post #12 of 16
Kind of my same thought. I belive you need the skills to ski this ski in a shorter lenght. I'm 5'11" 188lbs and would buy it in 170cm. But knowing my skill set, I've learned how to ski shorter skis. After years of reading post and watching skiers, thoes with less skill sets, Level 6,7, some 8 skiers like longer skis. Your on the west coast, and fall into that catagory. I think you'll be happy with 177cm.

For us right coasters, shorter is better in just about all cases. You just have to learn how to ski them correctly, that's why EPIC has the acadamy's and the mountians have a Learning Center.
post #13 of 16
A good idea would be to watch the REAL GOOD skiers @ the resort, those people who stand out, you wish you could ski like that!! Then go see what they have straped to their feet. It sells itself.
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by MTT
Interesting that noone has asked him how he skis, how he would like to ski? and what kind of conditions he is interested in sking, Looks like he skis western mountains mostly. PNW and Sierra's have primarily soft snow.
A bit more about that: It's hard to rate my level, as I learned by sink-or-swim. For capability, solid 7-8. For style/technique, maybe more like 6-7.

As a lad in Alaska, I used to step out the front door and thrash around on nordic skis. So when I got on alpines, it was awkward at first, but quickly became comfortable (really, mastering entry/egress of the lift was the most daunting part! : ).

Now I feel perfectly safe, in-control, and even fairly aggressive... yet I've never really been sure that I'm doing things the "correct" way. I know enough to stay out of the backseat, but if I need to avoid sombody or something, I don't hesitate to stomp on the tails, brake, skid...

I sort of draw a distinction between "turning" and "changing direction." Seems to me, changing direction is about doing what you gotta do - edge, lean, skid, check - whatever it takes. Then when that's accomplished, I can play around with turning - carving, changing radius.

That might be horrible technique - if it even makes sense at all! But that's basically where I'm coming from. Bottom line, I'd like some spit & polish. BTW, everything else was on rentals, right down to the rear-entry boots!
post #15 of 16

Your fret meter is redlining dude!!

Let's make this easy. If you can sneak out a day midweek, call me first, and I'll loan you my AC-3 demo in 177 at n/c.

I have plenty of AC-3's in both sizes and it looks like I can trade you if necessary.

Also, I may be doing some ski comparisons at Sugar Bowl Wed or Thursday, I'd be glad to hook up and ski with you a bit.

post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
Jim, you're a gentleman, a scholar, a saint, etc., etc..... I think you should run for governor or something!

I would LOVE to hook up Wed. or Thur. or whenever, please keep me posted.

When we get back I'll wash your car and mow your lawn!
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