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Ski length?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I've been skiing for 18 years, and I guess I consider myself pretty good, but I  know little about ski length, both for myself and others. Now I'm a fairly aggressive skier, i like to race recreationally, and speed is something I do. I'm on 165's I'm 5'6" (being short sucks) and weight around 200 pounds. I have a lot of muscle and a lot of weight to flex my ski's, so for a slalom/GS crossover like say stockli laser sc's (I guess race carver would be a better term?) should I go with 177 or 163? Is it all based on application?
post #2 of 8
Depends on the ski, what/where you ski, and most subjectively, what you like.  We can go on about the objective criteria until the cows come home, but at the end of the day, this is a personal taste issue as much as anything.

Critical questions left unanswered by your post include whether you like your current 165s, and what they are.

I weigh about the same as you.  The shortest ski in my quiver is a pair of 176 Fischer AMC79s, and they're my messing around, early season, and taking it easy ski.  My other skis are 186, 188, 190, 195, and 200.  But that's just the way my quiver has shaped up after deciding that no matter the conditions, all skis in the 160s and most in the 170s just felt too short for me.  Admittedly, I'm not a racer and I don't think I'd use a race carver much after Christmas, once off piste becomes passable.

I'd suggest that you demo and figure it out.
post #3 of 8
Here are some things to remember........

Weight is far more important than height & your weight is roughly within the "average+" range.

You can feather a SL ski in a GS course easier than you can muscle a GS ski in a slalom course.

For your applications, the lengths of off trail or powder oriented skis is irrelevant.


You will probably find a 177 a bit long for slalom, a better choice would be a 170.

post #4 of 8
I weigh 165 lbs and like to ski fast.  If I were buying a SL-GS crossover like the old Atomic SX11 for general purpose hard snow use, I would want it in about 170 cm.  My SL ski is 165 cm, my cruising ski is 190 cm, and my speed ski is 208 cm.  I'm pretty happy with those lengths.
post #5 of 8
5'6" @ 200# thats stocky & strong. :-) Alot of it like others say is personal likes & taste. I find a 170-174cm SL works well for me. If I want to go faster and safely,180cm-190cm GS. I don't think width is that important.
post #6 of 8
I'd agree with theDAD, all somewhat subjective so if it's an investment, demo. 

i come in at 190lbs at 5-9" gearless and while i'm no speedster, found SkiCanada Mag a nice review site as they list weight as one consideration.   being an intermediate and skiing mostly 170s, i'm happy but there is a big difference in my first ski a Solomon Verse 7 which is very soft (surprised i didn't snap em) and the Nordica's i now use.  these narrowed down upon based on 2-3 reviews where weight was considered. 

so, my imho without specifics, i'd claim 17x would be a good start point.
post #7 of 8

You've probably heard this before but, Demo. With your interest, and your description of yourself, I'm going to suggest starting with the shorter length. If you find lack of stability at the speeds you ski, then try the longer. A little shorter, in a stiff ski, is often the right answer, because shorter usually translates into more ease of control. Where you ski, and on what kind of snow also comes into play. Eastern skiers tend toward shorter skis because of the harder surfaces they deal with. Trees and bumps also suggest shorter. But be careful not to go too short. The testing at speed mentioned above is what I use to decide if a ski has the length I like. Essentially I ski the shortest ski that gets the job done the way I like it done. This includes nimbleness for trees and bumps, but it must be long enough and stiff enough to be stable at the kins of speeds I like. I own 4 varied pairs of skis, because no one ski does everything the way I like things done. If your budget and/or interest limits the number, you must decide what you like most to do, and weight your decision that way.

In the end it all comes down to personal preferences.

     Not an instant answer, but in skiing it really comes down to what you like to do, and where you like to do it. Find a good skiing specialty shop in your area, and work with them.



post #8 of 8

Welcome to the board, Phil.  I know that you're trying to be helpful, but it's a good idea to check the date of this kind of discussion before chiming in.  Sometimes a thread has gone stale long before.

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