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I need some info about sidecut length on skis

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Edit: How does a sidecut influence a skis performance.

I got a bit carrried away first post, forgot to look at any stickies or do a search.
post #2 of 8
Ummm...You just asked for an explanation for what a site like this has thousands of posts to explain. It is akin to asking for how DNA influences hair color and height. There is too much to explain in one chunk, try breaking it down into more managable parts and reading past posts. The basic elemements that control ski performance are: ski length, ski width, sidecut, logitudinal flex, torsional flex, constuction style, construction method. What you end up with is like cooking, more than just the sum of the parts but a symphony of flavors that change from cook to cook and recipe to recipe.
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Heh, I re read my question and I got a bit off topic, just a little. I'm not very good at asking stuff and I got a bit carried away. Main thing I had in mind was how the sidecut influences a skis performance and capabilities.

Anyone watching the Olympics? I saw some prelim runs and that was cool, opening ceromony is ok, but not really the thing I like, fire is cool though.
post #4 of 8

shoirt version

Short, lots of sidecut = SL .. slalom turns 99/63/112 @ 161 turn radius = 12.8

Longer ... less cut = GS ... 88/64/103 @ 186 turn radius = 22.7

Super G and DH skis are 200+ and get straighter
post #5 of 8
At the risk of over simplifying, here's my understanding:

The greater the sidecut, the more curved is the side of the ski, from tip to tail. (If you extended this curve to create a big circle, the length in meters of a straight line from the center of the circle to the outside of the circle is the "radius" of the ski.)

The more curved the ski, the greater the (relative) length of the ski edge that will be in contact with the snow when the ski is flexed and on edge.

The greater the relative length of edge in contact with the snow, the greater the turning force generated by the ski (easier to turn).

Hope this helps. And if any of the experts here can correct this summary, please do so!
post #6 of 8
Slolom skis are short radius (10 to 13 meter) side cut that will be shorter quicker turns. Think of a track of

Where a Giant Slolom ski will have a much higher radius (15 or 16 min for an all mountain ski- up to 21 meter for a full race GS ski)

These will link turns like this (it may not format correctly):

You also have to remember that the same ski in different lengths will have a higher turning radius. So the same ski in a 160 cm length may have a 12 radius and the same model in 180 cm may have 16 meter radius. You can use the radius calculator on this forum to get the numbers if the ski manufacturer's web site does not list the various lengths.
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Ok, cool, thanks guys
post #8 of 8
I hope you got what you were looking for. If not, I think the main points are:

More sidecut: Easier to turn, less stable running flat, less stable at speed.

Less sidecut: Harder to turn, more stable running flat, more stable at speed.

Generalizing is hard, since a bunch of other factors enter in to determine how skis behave, including ski construction, overall ski dimenions, terrain, snow conditions, size of the skier, skier technique and skill, etc. etc.
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