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How long do skis last?

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
This is sort of a dumb question, but my brother-in-law is skiing on my father's old skis that are about 15 years old. I'm actually more concerned about him skiing on 15 year old bindings, but that's another subject. My brother-in-law only skis 5 - 10 days a season, still likes the skis and sees no reason to upgrade, the skis work just fine. I, on the other hand, bought a pair of demo skis a year and a half ago, put @30 days on them last year and by the end of the season, they seem to have lost their 'pop'. Assuming you don't schuss off the bottom of the hill and into the parking lot every day, just how long should a pair of skis last?
post #2 of 26
It all depends on how hard you ski, and the materials used in the construction of the skis. Injected foam used in one of the major french manufacturers can be worn out in less than a month of moderate use, while certain brands from Austria using wood cores can withstand 100s of hard days. As long as the bases are kept conditioned with regular hot wax, and equipment is not abused, 100 days should easily be reached.
post #3 of 26
I say if they still have camber they still have life.
post #4 of 26
I've always found my skis wear out about the time I run out of other excuses for skiing badly.
post #5 of 26
It depends...
Do you bring your skis to a shop to have
maintenace? With which frequency?
This too can determine how long your ski
will last...
More, do you "just" cruise or go into bumps&Co?

Anyway I've had my K2 and Voelkl since 1991
and I just bought their replacement this summer, and expect that this ski will last at least 5 yrs +/-...
post #6 of 26
Rio- I like that one.

I should elaborate specially after all those tuning posts I replied to. I have yet to ski a ski long enough for it to totally lose it's camber. What I generally consider a dead ski is when it has no edge left. It's hard to ski eastern hardpack without edges. However two years ago I had a pair of 9S that had no edge left and I sharpened them anyway for one last trip to MT Washington. Under the toe I was sharpening more base then metal.
post #7 of 26
Although I usually like your posts, BetaRacer, this one appears to be very self serving and not up to your usual standards. The reference to thirty days and the "French" manufacturer . . . c'mon. Although I do have a lot of respect for the "German" and "Austrian" manufacturers, I also have great respect for the "French" ones, and thirty days is neither accurate nor fair. Even if you know of an instance where that was the case, others know of instances when it was not. Most modern implements do not have wood cores. While I have no problem with the use of wood as ski core material, modern synthetics will do just fine, with or without the metallic portion.
post #8 of 26
BetaRacer is taking some heat here, so I want to back him up. I was very disappointed with my last pair of Rossi's (XXX's), they lost their "pop" after a few weeks of use. If you want to defend Rossi under the argument of performance... fine, they ski pretty well. I liked how the XXX's skied, for the first couple weeks that is. However, in durability and construction, they are severely lacking.

Rossignol's Dualtec construction falls apart easily, the large sidewalls can get ripped out if you hit something hard(rock) while on edge. Rossi would be wise to look at how Volkl took the same concept (cap & sidewall hybrid), but made it durable. Volkl uses a very small sidewall, but with a larger cap - no blown sidewall problem. Rossi also is determined to keep using the cheap injected foam core routine. It simply does not provide the long-lasting snappy feel that wood cores do. For the first few days on them, or while demoing, it'll feel great. After you log 30-40 days on the skis, you'll be wondering why you went with Rossi when Volkl and Atomic are at similar prices nowadays. Only benefit of foam is lower weight, but I'll take the wood core feel and extra durability along with a little extra weight anyday.

Among the main brands released in the US, Volkl and Atomic stand out in terms of quality and construction. Stockli and Igneous are equally impressive, but don't have the market penetration of Volkl and Atomic.
post #9 of 26
I believe ski's life factor, has more to do with you type of sking and what the ski is made of. I still have a pair of K2's that are 15yrs old (K2 hawk) and are still ski able but they were my crusing ski's, I bought used ski's for when I bet the heck out to them and some brands lastest long then others. My favorate ski is my Volants.. Thunder bolt all mt., they cut through Michigan, slush and ice like magic, and I leave my K2 comp behind (which I finnilly gave to my husband when he master interm.) Oh ya.. the boots that was with my 15yr ski's Cracked wide open when I was walking in them 5yrs ago.

My mother still has a pair of STEAL HEAD black ski's(her name and city are engraved in them)... they are like 45 yrs old I think? I know they are older then me.. might be 50. They have the old bindings and leather ankle boots with them. And they are still skiable. The dont make them like they use to huh? She also skied on bear traps too.. lol.. I saw a picture of her on them... hehehehe.. sorry guys. Some guy wanted to buy them, (before volant came out steal ones) for skiing. She couldnt part with them.

"Fly like an Eagle" -
Steve Miller Band
post #10 of 26
good maintenance and good care help. Keep those skis dry when stored, clean and wax often, repair bases and deep scratches....

I think I still have a good skiable pair of Rossi Strato 102 GS from the early 60s. Have had offers for these from several people.
post #11 of 26
Thread Starter 
The point I was trying to make with my crack about skiing into the parking lot was I assume that one is taking proper care of one's skis by keeping them dry, regularly sharpening the edges, waxing and patching the base, etc. Rio, loved your comment. You sound like a few golfers I know (Obviously, if I'm not hitting the ball well, I must need new clubs).

Oboe, while I would agree that 30 days seems a little short, I'm not sure that I would agree that even todays modern foam cores will hold up or last as long as a wood core does. Or at least I've heard that before.

SnO, my Dad kept his pair of Head Standards (220 cm) around until the late 80's. They were his powder skis, incredibly soft flex and as was the case then, you got your float by the length instead of the width. Your post also got me thinking about my Mom's old scrapbook and some great pic's of her and her friends taking trips to Sun Valley, Alta, and Jackson Hole in 1947, and Aspen and Arapahoe in 1948. Not only the old lace up boots, but the huge oversize baskets on the poles, the single chair lifts, and the pics of the instructors demonstrating techniques when she was in ski school are great. Would love to share them with the Bears, but my scanner is on the fritz! Say, anyone know if the Red Onion is still open in Aspen?
post #12 of 26
I agree but there are a lot of skiers I know that dry their skis after a day of skiing and put them in the garage. "Wax? Tune up? yeah at the beginning of each season. I don't need to go fast, Bindings? they were set by the Shop. Do I need to do anything else? Why don't my skis turn well(rounded edges)..."

I still remember the tennis ball between the skis at the bridge and straps at the ends to make sure we keep the camber...
post #13 of 26
I don't belive there is a set time for ski's to last. There are way to many varables,how you ski, how much you ski,type of material's used for construction,etc.The best you might do is consider the following factors,are the edges still viable,nick's in the Base,is there still camber,and what is that camber compared to when they were new.Yes these ski's maybe fine to you because you get used to how they feel(less camber)But they are probably not as stiff as they used to be. After 15 years, your bindings Are OLD! at least look into getting new bindings for your evidently favorite ski's.

post #14 of 26
I have a pair of Volkl zebra R's that I got in 1980 , These things have seen a couple hundered days easy. Last year I took them out just for the heck of it and was surprised to see how much life they had .Theres alot to be said for good high end wood core skis.(that have been looked after)
post #15 of 26
See my thread about replacing the Völkls P9 I bought in 88.

I am using my fourth (!) pair of bindings on them, but the P9 is still going strong.

It's just like a good german car: they last a long time, but in the end you are going to have more and more repairs and you might just want to buy a new model one day.
post #16 of 26
Here I go defending Rossignols again. I can't help but wonder what you people do to skis that make you think they are junk after thirty days. If they are no good after thirty days, why then does Rossi warranty them for two years from the date of purchase?

For many years I sold Atomics, Olins, Head, Blizzard, R.D., Volants. For many years the only skis I skied were Atomics Heads and Olins mainly because they were Wood and metal construction. They skied smoother and lasted longer. Foam core skis would trash easier and wouldn't hold up. Then I happened to try a Rossi 4s. You know what? I've been skiing Rossi's ever since. The performance and feel they gave me was unequalled. I've owned many more since then. 7s, 4sm, 7sm, Viper z, Banditx and banditxx. Probably a few more I forgot about in between. Never had a Warranty problem, no cracks or sidewall problems not even cosmetic problems. I have put more than 100 days on a few of them and am approaching 100 days on my current pair of banditx's and they still feel great. I spend alot of money on ski equipment. I like to get my monies worth. I have no doubt that Rossignols are fine skis. I will argue with anyone who says anything differently. If you don't like them fine, that's your opinion and you're entitled to it. I'll stand behind them 100 per cent.

If it holds snow-It can be skied!
post #17 of 26
i have a pair of k2 dusters and was wondering if the core was wood or foam and my opinion of how long skis last is until the bindings r outdated or no longer safe cuz theres no use in buying new bindings if u dont buy new skis
post #18 of 26
>>>Say, anyone know if the Red Onion is still open in Aspen?<<<

Tag, I had not visited aspen for about ten years or more until a couple of years ago. I remembered the Red Onion as that cool bar in the middle, the cheaper food in the room to the right with the red checkered table cloths, and the room to the left with the ritzy and expensive service.

My disapointment on my last visit was supreme. It is still the Red Onion bar but it is a national chain spaghetti house, the side rooms are now a poster shop, I think, on the right side and another shop where the ritzy dining room was. Also the street in front is a walking mall.

When I asked how come they didn't change the name to the spaghetti house, I was told that it is on the national register and the name and the look outside and the decor inside of the bar have to stay as they were, only now in those half-round booths on the right, folks eat spaghetti.

post #19 of 26

I believe all K2s are made with wood cores. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.
post #20 of 26
Thread Starter 
Thanks, Ott! I haven't been to Aspen in close to 25 years myself. I actually haven't been to the Red Onion either, just have a picture of my Mom and a friend on their trip to Aspen in '48 standing outside of this funky looking building with a big sign that says "The Red Onion". Couldn't tell from the pic if the Red Onion was a bar/restaurant/boutique or what. Fun to hear that 50 years later, at least part of the building is still around.
post #21 of 26
I am dragging this topic out of the attic. I recently bought a pair of used Swiss GS race skis with about 25-30 days on them (good price). From the side the edges are like new--very thick and smooth. Looking at the edges from the bottom, however, I see that they must have been sharpened every other time out. From side edge sharpening the edges are about three-quarters of millimeter wide, whereas they appear to have begun their life with about one and a quarter millimeter of edge width. Do I have enough edge width to cut ice on an eastern GS? How many sharpenings will they stand? Is there a point of no return?

post #22 of 26
A few things....

Not ALL K2's have been made with wood cores, some entry-mid level skis of the past used foam.

Volkl, I have seen as many pairs of Volkl's blow up as any other brand.

Rossignol, Of course a sidewall can blow up if you hit something hard, LIKE A ROCK!!! That could do it to any ski. Now of course there is no sidewall per say on a Atomic, doesn't mean you can't rip a big hunk out and be staring at fiberglass (I know, I've done it to my Beta 9.28's)

Foam -vs- Wood
I am a wood core supporter, but the Rossignols I have owned have been very durable, but did not sustain the same type of life and pop as some of my wood core skis.
They lasted longer than 30 days, and just about no ski will last 100's of days (100 yes but multiple, please) unless you are only skiing groomed.

How Long all depends on what's mentioned before, how many days, how hard and abusive, and how many tunes.

I have seen skis that had plenty of pop left be retired because the base had worn through, or the the dges were paper thin, too many trips over the stone.

Blah, Blah, Blah.......
post #23 of 26
I think it depends on the skier. My husband and I always ski together - same number of d ays, same number of runs. He has to replace his skis twice as often as me, cause he weighs a lot more. Okay, the skis are longer so the weight is spread, but when he hits a rock with 16 stone of body weight he does a lot more damage than I do when I hit the same rock. So far the Volkl G30 have stood the test of time far better than any of his K2's and Olins. The ski shop owner made the point they were made for the German male who on average are not light weight and scrawny.
post #24 of 26
first how about a little conversion for 16 stone. 1 stone= X lbs?

So that shop guy thinks American's are skinny and scrawny? I would have to disagree and stand up and say that the US is one of the fattest most overweight countries in the world. American's strive for obesity in our fast food culture.

But even beyond that, for a shop guy to say that, he is a complete dolt. Being a FIT 200lbs (how many stones would that be?) American who has skied on just about every brand of ski at one time or another and still prefers K2's, I gotta say I believe his statment is incorrect.

happy happy joy joy.......
post #25 of 26
There are 14 lb in a stone, so thats about 224 lb. We are metric here so I am more familiar with kilos, he is about 102 kg (naked).

I agree with you that Americans are not skinnt and scrawny. The salesperson was a similar size to my other half, and he found they suited him.

Herman Maier was training at our local field in NZ last year, along with the rest of the Austrian team. I must say three were plenty of impressive buns and thighs in those tight fitting ski suits for us to appreciate, all muscle! Now if I could just get my man into one of those......
post #26 of 26
Skis last untill you want another pair! Maintainence is the big thing here. The old metal Head skis... soft tails these are the skis that started changing everything. I had a pair given to me - way too long. I'm 5'4" and these were aorund 209's or so! it took me 40 acres to turn these things around! One day I noticed the tips would cross all the time and I'd crash and burn! I would concentrate on form to keep this from happening. It still did. One night on an easy blue run I fell and slid into a ski class. As I was going as over tea kettle I noticed I had hit almoost everyone, leaving a 7-10 split! The instructor yelled, "If you can't handle the mountain, get off the hill!" After profuse appologies I went to a ski shop on my way back down the mountain. I told Joey at Joey's Ski Shop (not there anymore) that I didn't want to sound like a carpenter who blames his tools but ... and I explained the problem. She said to put them up on the table. There was no camber left in them and on ski was warped so badly it tipped back and forth like a bad chair with one short leg! But, she said this can easily be fixed for $15! I sold the skis, telling the people honestly what was wrong with them. They bought them. The next season I met the father's son on the hill! he said I was right. He got them fixed for $15 and they are the best ski he ever had! This was back in the early '60's.
Jean Claude Killy drove Dynamics, and won the triple crown with them. That's how Dynamic got their name. They were the fastest ski in the world at the time, but they lasted only about a year!
Hexels were incredible skis, and would probably give today's ski a run for their money. I don't know why they got out of skis. I hear the company does roller blades, I believe. Anyone know more about this?
15 year old bindings? Deffinately not indemnified! Persuade him to get new ones please. I've got other old war horse stories from the early days, but I've talked too long again. Just tell me to go lay on my rug over by the fire and scratch my left ear. -the ol' dog

Life's a pain... then you nap. Cat philosphy
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