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My head is spinning from too much research! Help!

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hi guys, I've been doing a lot research to buy a ski. I'm 5 7", 175 lbs athletic. I just learned skiing last winter but I had no problem going on diamonds at the end of the season.

I ski in the east, groomed only. Usually the snow is hard and most of the time it's icy. I like to go fast but I really need to work on my technique. I want a ski that will allow me to turn easily and carve through ice no problem.

Here's what I narrowed it down to. Please let me know if you have any experience with these. Which ones would you pick?

-Fischer RX-6 (is this called now the RX 4 Fire?)
-Dynastar Contact 10 (should I be buying 9 or 8?)
-Salomon x-wing 10 (Salomon says it's all mountain ski but the reviews say it's good on piste)
-Vokl AC20

Basically I want a fun ski that will help me improve. But I guess if it's too hard to ski it will discourage me from trying new things.

I think my perfect length is 160 based on my research. If I only had two choices to pick from, 155 and 165, which one should I pick?

Thanks a lot,

post #2 of 15
 HI Ronnald, Welcome to the wonderful world of ski gear purchasing...you're on the right track with a short list.

The properties of different skis/brands will definitely offer something different, even if they have the same dims and purpose.
For instance, a Volkl will be energetic, a Fischer will likely be stable and poppy, a Salomon will be more damp.... you get the idea.

Its entirely possible for you to buy any one of those skis on your short list and be completely happy(eenie meenie minie mo), but if you really want to shop, get boots first.

Invest your time and $$$ into a ski lesson, and  good, well fitted boots, then take your boots to the hill and demo a few skis.

Boots first will be some advice that you won't regret.
post #3 of 15

As mentioned. Boots... boots... boots. Sure skis are the sexy and fun thing to buy, boots are the important piece of gear. You will get more out of a better fitting boot and a lesser ski than an ill fitting boot and a better ski. I am not sure where you are, but find a good boot fitter local to you (or real close to the mountain you ski) and get your boots lined up first. 
post #4 of 15
It's hard to recommend a ski.  I know what I like.  I know what to recommend for my daughter, 'cause I've skied with her.  Getting down expert runs, doesn't tell me much.  You may enjoy a race ski that does exactly what you tell it, or you may be tortured by one because it's too unforgiving.  Fast for you might be slow for me. 

Check out the subscription (20 bucks last I checked) reviews at expertskier.com.  They are worth it, once you understand what all the symbols mean.  The fact that they go back a few years, can save you a lot of money on a left-over that meets your needs.  I would go for a 13-m or so radius ski if you want to improve your turns, 20+ m if you only want to fly along at high speed,  about 15m for a compromise.  As far as ability level of the ski, try a few skis of different levels out, compare how you like them to the ability level on the review site and pick the level you like the best.

Boots are more important.  Get them fitted by a good boot fitter.  Expect to make a few return visits to the fitter for final adjustments after skiing in the boots.
post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies guys. I already bought boots last season. I felt pretty comfortable in them so I think this part is handled.

I also bought a pair of used beginner Rossignol skis. I thought they were ok because I didn't know any better, but when I tried my friend's skis I was amazed because they were so much easier and quicker than mine. I think his were some intermediate Head model few years old.

I would love to demo skis but I haven't heard of any demos here. I live in Toronto. And I'd rather have a good ski now to start next season right.

I want to take advantage of the low prices currently offered. I can get the dynastar contact 10 in 165 for about $350 US shipped. All these skis have a radius between 13 and 15 for the length I'm looking at.

Hope someone have experience with these skis that can share. Which one would you pick of these? 


post #6 of 15
Hi Ronnald. I had the chance to ski the Dynastar Contact 10 this last ski season. I am the same height and weight of you. I would recommend the ski in the 172cm size for you. I found it forgiving and easy to ski. Would be challenging for you at first but with lessons and practice I think you can quickly grow into them.The shorter 165cm would feel good to start but may not afford you stability at speed as your skills improve.Good luck.
post #7 of 15
Hello Ronnald. How many days do you ski per season? How many different slopes do you
visit? I agree with others here about the demo plan. Call ahead to the different slopes
you plan to visit and ask what skis they have to demo. Make a list. See if you can line up demos in two lengths for the same day. Sometimes the same model in different lengths ski
way different. I know how the pressure is on to get a great deal, but you could demo all
next season and be more informed about what you like. There are almost no bad skis out
there but one will be better for you and your style. Then grab that great deal.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 

Jon, last season I only skied 10 days. I'm planning on going more this year. This is why I thought maybe I should spend my time learning and taking lessons instead of demoing skis.

I will definitely try to demo when I get a chance but I want a ski that I can get used to and I can learn on. I'm thinking changing skis often is going to confuse me for now.

I'm leaning towards the Contact 10. If I can keep it for 3 years and it helps me improve I'll be perfectly happy, and I'll probably get something different if I get better.

JMD, I'm thinking 165 might be more appropriate for me. I now have 160 and it took me a while to learn how to turn properly with them and keep them parallel.

I should definitely take some lessons next season. You guys know any good instructors at Blue Mountain or Horse Shoe Valley near Toronto?



post #9 of 15

I can't speak to the other choices, but I've had the AC-20 for two seasons and have no regrets.  It's stable, great on groomed slopes, and is a ski you can grow with (i.e., you won't need to trade-up a year after you've purchased it).  I'm 5'9" and the 163 was fine while I was progressing from greens through blues and into black slopes.
post #10 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks Jimski. The only thing that kept me away from the AC20 is the cost. I can get the Contact 10 for about $100 cheaper for the 2009 year.

Thanks for all the advice guys.

post #11 of 15
The Dynastar is a very, very good ski. You won't be disappointed, if the deal is good (certainly sounds like it) go for it. You are correct that the demo process (at this point for you) would probably just confuse you and stunt your improvement skill-wise.
post #12 of 15
Contact 10 is a lot of ski.

Take a lok at the Head Magnum SS.
post #13 of 15
Go with the Contact 10. As mentioned, it's a great ski, and while maybe a bit beyond your current skill level, it shouldn't hold you back, but will be ready when you really know how to use it.

The AC20 will be behind you in ability in a short period, whereas the Contact 10 will probably be your pal for at least 3 years.
post #14 of 15
I haven't skied it, but from what I've read the Contact 10 should do you fine.
170 might be a better length in the long run, but 165 will make learning a little easier, and if you concentrate on making lots of turns on the groomed runs you should be fine with it.
post #15 of 15
Thread Starter 
 Alright I pulled the trigger today. I got the Contact 10 in 165. Most of the runs where I go skiing are narrow, I don't think I can handle the 172s yet.

Now I'll wait patiently for the snow :)

Thanks for all the help guys.

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