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Frustrating Demo

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Had an interesting experience in Steamboat this weekend. I broke my 187cm Xscream Series the previous weekend, so I demo'd some 184cm Bandit XX's for the weekend.

The particulars, I'm 6'4", 195, been skiing for 22 years, usually 15 to 20 days a year. I spend most of the day in bumps and trees, skiing hard. I really like the salomon's but thought it would be fun to try something new. A couple of friends I ski with both ski the xx's and really like them.

For some reason I could never ski the XX's well. I was catching edges all over the place, crossing tips, crossing tails, missing turns, and falling a lot. I tried every trick I know, to no avail. I was able to put a couple of nice short sections in the bumps together, but as soon as I got comfortable and stopped really thinking about the ski, something would go wrong and I'd be on my face (I've always liked my helmet, but now have a new appreciation for it). I wrecked in bumps, on cruisers, a beauty on a cat walk under a lift and another heading into a lift line. Never got into the trees out of pure fear.

I was extremetly frustrated, quit early, went to the bar, drank beer and watched football while my friends were up skiing. Demo'd some Salomon Scream Pilot 10's the next day and had blast.

Any ideas on why this day went so bad? bad tune? is my skiing style too dependant on the sidecut of the salomons?

any ideas would be appreciated.

post #2 of 14
If you were catching edges all over the place, it sounds to me like someone tuned them nice and sharp and forgot to detune the tips and tails a few inches...edge city!
post #3 of 14
My understanding is that the current thinking on shaped skiis is to NOT detune tip and tail, aside from the finish point that never contacts the snow.

However, tuning could still be the culprit. With demo skiis, if they've endured too many base grinds, the base edge bevel, of one degree or so, could well have been ground away, and so the skiis could be quite catchy.
post #4 of 14
A shop I talked to recently said they detune tips and tail (just a bit) unless you specify otherwise. They said when they don't they get nothing but complaints that sound an awful lot like godot's description.
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the feedback.

I was really wondering why I am capable of skiing my xscream's well, the pilot 10's well, but I was barely able to stay upright much less turn the xx's. I've demo'd quite a few skis and never experienced this before.

Just couldn't think of any reason why I would have such a hard time adjusting to a ski.

Thanks again.
post #6 of 14
Why didn't you bring them back? Unless you had the hangover to end hangovers, you figure it is a sh*t tune.
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
i got the demo's in ft collins, and was skiing steamboat. going to talk to the shop owner tonight.
post #8 of 14
It is probably a good idea to be able to recognize a decent tune through sight and feel. Even if one is not inclined to tune their own equipment. And to carry some sort of "stone" to try to fix obvious hangups or at least neutralize them.
post #9 of 14
Sounds like the skis were railed or even mounted wrong. Or, you were having the worst day of your life. I've had lackluster days once in a while when i'll be skiing and nothing feels right. Back's stiff or I got a headache or hangover, but it happens. I usually do the same thing you did, get the heck off the mountain and get a cocktail. I doubt it was the Bandits fault. They are so similar in sidecut and feel. Living in the West, why would one want to sharpen skis anyhow. You guys don't know what "ice" is. But, when I do sharpen my skis, I usually detune the tips some, at least the XX's My shorties I don't.
post #10 of 14
I can't offer you any conclusions as to why, but I will say that I had an amazingly similar experience.
I was demoing several skis over a 5 day period, the first of which were Bandit XX 170cm. Didn't like em a bit. I hadn't skied for 5 mo. and thought maybe it was me, but I found them very edgy, not the easiest to turn, and too stiff. Gave them back and got Sally Crossmax 10 Pilots, HELLO! These were mint, problems solved. Skied Volant Chubbs too, but they are in a different category.
The planks I bought are X-scream 9's, 169cm, really like 'em, but wish I'd gone 179. Couldn't afford the Xmax 10 P.
One thing about the Sallys though, they're not real fond of goin' straight. Crossmax were better than the xscreams in that regard.
post #11 of 14
Any thoughts on stiffness?

Rossi's might be a bit more spicey than the Sollys!

Chubbs are a gas in the bumps for the reason of their wet noodle performance.

post #12 of 14
Originally posted by CalG:
Any thoughts on stiffness?

Rossi's might be a bit more spicey than the Sollys!

Chubbs are a gas in the bumps for the reason of their wet noodle performance.

I find Bandits quite a lot stiffer. Their new microcellular construction and the VAS gives a soft feeling but if you flex the boards they are quite stiff and even more so in the tail. I do not think they are as forgiving as the Pilots/Crossmax especially if your for/aft balance is a little off.

Personally I think Salomon might actually be Italian for "noodle". At 5'10" and 265lbs ( bulk due to a lot of rugby and an occasional beer) I generally avoid them as they just BEND!

In terms of the tuneing, if the skis have had a tune that gives them a distinctive left and a right ski and you mix them up...it is not pretty.

It took me quite a while for me to get used to my XXs and I have skiied a few different skis this year and found I can normally adjust quite quickly. But the Bandits required time.

Finally, I find that, especially on the flat or cattracks, you have to keep them on edge. The sidecut on the XX is enough to make it want to turn a lot and this will give you an unstady felling if you are running flat in comparison to most other skiis in the same shape/class.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
I stopped by the shop on the way home from work and talked to the owner about what happened with the XX Demo. I've skied with the owner on a few occasions and as soon as I told him what happened he suggested it was probably a bad tune (didn't de-tune the tips and tails), apologized, and told me I could demo free of charge for the rest of the year.

I probably didn't consider the possibility of a bad tune on the mountain because I've been getting my skis tuned there for 5 years and have never had any problems.

Thanks for all the feedback. I really like the idea of carrying a sharpening stone along in case this happens again.

Have a good day.
post #14 of 14
Could've been a bad tune, but it could also be the skis. The other day I tried out a pair of 177cm XX's and found that they skied like a much longer ski. They felt longer and heavier than my 186 Dynastar Cross's (which are the heaviest skis I've ever carried across a parking lot), even a little bit "dead" or overdamped. I didn't weigh them, but just by picking them up the Bandits didn't seem to be a particularly heavy ski. I later got a chance to try a pair of 170's and found them to be quite pleasant. I'm 6', 155 lb. At your height/weight you might find the 177's to be more fun than the 184's.
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