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Rockered skis in non-pow conditions

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Just spent several back to back days on my Kuro's in deep pow conditions. They absolutely kill it in the pow. Very playful & easy to turn despite it's massive dimensions. They are full continuous rocker with no flat spot, but a very low rise. This is my 1st experience with a rockered ski & I can see why they are they preferred weapon of choice for deep pow. No such thing as tip dip, no hookiness, any turn shape, any speed. Just an unbelievable powder board!

 

Now take them on the firm packed snow and whoa! It's almost impossible to get them up on edge. The rocker feels like it's working against you. You can't lay it over & just carve it like a traditional camber ski. Smearing & pivoting sort of works but it feels more like a survival game to get down the hill. 

 

Are full rockered skis really that difficult to handle on the packed snow or is there something I'm missing. Or is that just the compromise I need to make to for soft snow performance?

 

Other fatties I've skied which do not exhibit these characteristics: Gotama, Katana, Obsethed. However these are more tradiitional camber or zero camber.


Edited by wizard - 3/22/2009 at 03:47 am
post #2 of 11

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard View Post

 

Now take them on the firm packed snow and whoa! It's almost impossible to get them up on edge. The rocker feels like it's working against you. You can't lay it over & just carve it like a traditional camber ski. Smearing & pivoting sort of works but it feels more like a survival game to get down the hill. 

 

Are full rockered skis really that difficult to handle on the packed snow or is there something I'm missing. Or is that just the compromise I need to make to for soft snow performance?

 

Bingo.

post #3 of 11

Clearly there are trade offs. But quite a few of the reverse camber and fully rockered skis can do better carving on firm snow than many think. The Kuro among them. One thing I've noticed is that some people take "the basics are the basics" thing a wee but too literally. Take one of those skis & put it on a table or a hard floor (brakes locked up). Look at it carefully. Roll it side to side.  Then contemplate just how effective "driving through the tips" is gonna be on firm or hard snow. Hint: not very - because the widest part of ski is up in the air. But that's OK because the ski is already in its basic turning shape...

 

On firm snow, a ski like a Kuro (and others) needs to be rolled over & the contact zone needs to grow out from the center under your foot. And staying laterally pretty much over the skis while you are doing this is not a bad idea...  But getting out over the tips just makes for weirdness, without accomplishing much.

 

All that said, when the return from Spanky's is packed & icy -- it just ain't gonna be joyful...

post #4 of 11

yes some like the JJ, S7 Kuro do 'better' than most will think, the hellbent is actualy exceptional on soft groomers.

 

its realyl doesnt matter on packed snow a cambered skis fat or not will be what you want.

 

 

post #5 of 11

Some rockers are better than others on groomed. Lhasa Pows are pretty good. I've heard S7's are good. But overall, rockers are not designed for groomed, and if you ski them there, you're wasting the design.  

post #6 of 11

Doesn't the Lhasa have a no-camber, but traditional sidecut mid-section?  I know the tip is rockered, but to me the rest of the ski is traditional to a large extent (which is good for overall usability). 

post #7 of 11

Skis like Lhasa Pows, S7s, JJs, etc have cambered midsections incorporated into their designs. IMO bringing them into the discussion will confuse the issue of handling of skis like the OP's Kuro - with reverse camber ( or fully rockered ) that also have some element of sidecut. And like next year's Gotama for that matter. And arguably as well as Hell Bents, EP Pros, etc...

 

Not that those skis and the handling issues are not related. Just that I think things get a bit blurrier.

post #8 of 11

My experience on PRaxis Pow is you have to get the balance point right or else they are helpess and once you do that... they work good if the groomer is soft (stab your pole in and the pole basket leaves an indent) and if you make the type of turn that the skis wants to make. On the Praxis there is a small (a bit longer than my bindings) flat stright sction righ tunder foot that you need to balance over. Bad things happen if you aren't balanced over that section of the ski. You can use that short running length of edge to carve some turns and dig in even on a consolidated surface. There is basicly one type of turn that the praxis can make on edge and its pretty long... don't take the ski anywhere where you need more than that one turn (steeps).

 

On powder day groomers: Good

Day after: Doable, if it hasn't gotten really warm

2days+ after: Is there any powder left? Why are you on this ski?


Edited by tromano - 3/22/2009 at 05:13 pm
post #9 of 11

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by skier219 View Post

 

Doesn't the Lhasa have a no-camber, but traditional sidecut mid-section?  I know the tip is rockered, but to me the rest of the ski is traditional to a large extent (which is good for overall usability). 

219, moderate rockered tip, flat camber/high 30's radius middle, mildly rockered tail. Actually pretty standard design these days. I think the reason it works decently turning on groomed is more about flex patterns (fairly stiff except tip, like a fat carver), running length (really short obviously) and materials (carbon in there) for lateral stiffness than just the shape. But all that said, it can feel pretty ponderous to this easterner in bumps and not for straightlining less than a foot of snow. 

post #10 of 11

Yeah, they suck to varying degrees (talking groomers and hardpack here).  The better you ski (aggressive releases, high edge angles, pressure at the cuff of the boot by closing your ankle joint) the more dissapointed you will be with rockers on groomed snow.  At the demo event yesterday, I saw tons of recreational skiers trying the wide rockers on groomers, and they were just pushing their ski tails around; for those people, it probably doesn't matter if they have a rocker or non-rocker, as you don't require much of the ski if you are back-seat driving or tail-pushing.  Good skiers who want more from the groomer than just "getting back to the lift" aren't going to much enjoy a rocker in those circumstances.  Which is a great excuse to have 2 pair of skis, or just get something a little more versatile that actually does pretty well on firmer snow, like a Huge Trouble.  As SJ said in the other thread: "there is no free lunch".   


Edited by dawgcatching - 3/22/2009 at 07:44 pm
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 

I'm glad it's not only me who's experienced the same on rockers. Whistler has a lot of vert & often getting back to the goods or the ski out at the end of the day, can force you to ski less than desireable conditions along the way. Esp if you start getting into the really heavy compacted snow or hard pack. Maybe I'll just download at the end of the day instead of torturing myself. Shame though, cuz I love doing that last long ski out at the end.

 

I think one of my problems is trying to drive the tips of the skis like a regular camber ski rather than just rolling them over. I'll have to wait till the next pow day to experiment.


Edited by wizard - 3/22/2009 at 07:59 pm
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