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New here: Hi all + 1 quick question re Head Monster Ski Length.

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hello, new to the forums here. Looks like a nice community. I have a quick question regarding ideal ski length of some Head Monster 78's I am looking at. There is a store nearby that is closing down and they are selling these at an excellent price of $220. They only have one size left (171 cm) and I am thinking of snatching them up. I am 6'-0", 180 lbs and my other set of skis are a well used pair of Volkl Vertigo G21's that are 178cm. I ski out west 60% groomed, and venture of piste the rest of the time. I don't usually luck out to make it to the REALLY deep powder days but I do like to hit the powder when I can. I don't really hit the bumps as much these days but still like to ski chutes and other off trail terrain. I would say I am probably expert level, about an 8, but bumps would be my weakness (I'd like to get better though). I am 37.


My question is whether, at my hieght and weight, a 171cm would be notceably limiting compared to the Volkl's at 178cm? Do you think a 171cm ski would be ok for someone my age/hieght/wieght. I certainly don't feel like I need more length when skiing the Volkl's, but the certainly don't feel too long either.


The store also has a pair of Rossi Bandit B78's in a 174cm. Should I pick those up instead? (Reasearch seems to point me to the Monster 78 as the better ski)


thanks all! 

post #2 of 10

I do think the Monster is a better ski than the Bandit, no question about that.


I am 6'1" 195lbs level 8 and owned the Monster 78 in 177cm.  I loved everything about the ski, but it was too short for my tastes.  So I think 171cm would definitely be too short for you, with only 1" and 15 lbs between us.  You might be comfortable in the 177cm, but I can say I would choose 183cm for myself next time around.


BTW, you can plug your specs into the product advisor on Head's website and see what they recommend.

post #3 of 10

Hi Wayne, welcome to Epic!


Forget the B78. Noodle for you. About the iM78, agree with 219 mostly, the 177 would be the best length. But that said, it's a fantastic price, and the 171's will work well for you as more of a 80/20 ski. Slap a good plate on it and at your size they'll rock in the bumps, turn on a dime, carve short to medium radius turns nicely, bust cud, and generally feel like fat slalom ski. Will have a speed limit, but between the plate and the i technology, it'll be higher than you expect. Only drawback would be backside/chute performance. Not enough float or stability. Length would help the stability, but won't much help float. IMO any 78 mm is the wrong idea if that's a priority, you should be going 6-10 mm fatter and looking at something like a iM82 or 88, Blizzard 8.7, Fischer Watea 84, or Atomic Crimson Ti. 

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies/advice Skier219 and beyond - much appreciated!


Regarding the 78 width, that's a good point. These are such a good deal that, I think I'll pick them up anyway and maybe I'll pick up a longer, wider set of boards for the off-trail/deep powder/backside stuff - like those recommended in beyond's post above.


beyond: Maybe this is a dumb question, but what did you mean by "slap a good plate on it"? I assume you meant a good set of bindings? I don't have the budget right now to get the latest and greatest for these skis, but I do have a pair of never used Marker M51's that have a din setting up to 13 or 14 that I was planning on using (I run a setting of 11-12). I purchased these back in 2000 but never mounted them. (I am aware of the Marker pre-release issues, but I've never had a problem with another set of M51's I used 5-6 years ago)


Anyway, thanks for the tips!

post #5 of 10

If you're stuck on a 171cm ski, then I would go with something carvier and stouter than the iM78.  I honestly think 171cm would be too short for you in that ski, but 177cm would probably be ideal.  As a mid-fat, I don't see the point of skiing the iM78 too short -- you're taking away the benefit/point of that kind of ski.


EDIT: BTW, you can find similar deals on the iM78 in other lengths if you hunt around, so don't feel obligated to jump on that deal at your shop based solely on $$$.

post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 

I researched a bit and answered my own question above. I guess I do sound somewhat uninformed don't I? :-)


A few follow-up questions:


These particular bindings do have a sort of plate underneath them that connects the front and rear binding. While I assume this wouldn't be considered a good plate, do you think it would be sufficient?


Are plates binding specific? ie do I need to get a plate made specifically for this binding?


Once a pair of skis are drilled for a specific binding, can you mount a different pair with a different hole pattern later on? Or will I be stuck with using the M51's?



post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

skier219: Thanks - I'll definitely check around for some other deals on different lengths

post #8 of 10


Originally Posted by Wayne77 View Post

beyond: Maybe this is a dumb question, but what did you mean by "slap a good plate on it"? I assume you meant a good set of bindings? 

No, a plate goes under the bindings. A carve plate, for instance, gives your bindings some additional height off the ski surface, gives you a little more leverage, thus the term "carving." A race plate does this but also adds stiffness to the middle of the ski, which can aid both edge bite and stability. We'll differ here on what width of ski is the outside limit for plates or added height; some draw the line at <70 carvers, while some put added height on powder skis. All depends on your taste. 


IMO Skier 219 has a strong point, a debatable point, and a weak point. Weak point first: Your price is actually very good even for Tram in August, I know of no prices on a new iM78 even close to that right now, and I looked last night. Maybe 219 knows of a secret stash? 


Debatable point: Whether these days a narrower midfat (a lot of people call skis 10-15 mm wider midfats too) is meant to mash crud and rip powder. Seems to me there are a lot of high 70's, like the Blackeye, Tigershark 12 foot or AC 30, Jet Fuel, and 78 Ti, that are optimized for high speed carving on groomed and at most mild crud/light pow. The iM78 is more of a do-everything, but neither fat enough for real soft snow nor grippy enough for serious ice. Don't think 6 cm more length radically changes that, just makes the ski stiffer, more stable at speed. Thus more versatile for your weight. Which leads us to the strong point.


Strong point: If you're thinking about a two ski setup, having a forgiving do-it-all midfat as your groomer ski is probably not a useful strategy. I'd also recommend thinking about a high 60's to low 70's carver, and then something in the 90's for softer snow. 

post #9 of 10

Also, if you are planning to have a shop mount the M51, make sure those bindings are still indemnified.  That is on the ragged edge based on my memory.  Shops won't touch a binding that is no longer indemnified by the manufacturer, even if it's new in the box.  But with good new bindings on sale in the $100 range these days, might not be a big deal. 

post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 

Great advice all - thanks a ton. I'll chew on it a but and consider my options. This really helps out though.

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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › New here: Hi all + 1 quick question re Head Monster Ski Length.