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eBay a good source to beginner gear?

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I've been checking out eBay lately and they have some complete packages (skis, poles, and boots) for pretty reasonable prices. The only problem I can see is that they skis use 3 pin bindings and that those aren't the prefered binding these days. I think most of the gear is 20 years old, but looks to be in really good shape. I think I can get one of these packages for less than 150 dollars. What do you think?

-Links
post #2 of 12
Thread Starter 
Sorry I forgot to mention these are cross country packages.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Here are the descriptions of the three I like the most:

A great pair of wooden cross country skis ....The skis are signed "MEDALIST"!! The skis have waxless bottoms (fishscales). The skis measure 78" long (200 cm)...all original!!   Have 3 pin bindings. Have a pair of ski poles that measures 53" long (I do have other poles so if you wish to change the length just let me know. Ready to use...in great condition.

A great pair of cross country skis ....The skis are signed "FISCHER"!! The skis measure 73" long (190 cm)...all original!!  Have 3 pin bindings. Have a pair of ski poles that measures 50" long (the poles can be changed for a different length if you need). Ready to use...in great condition

A great pair of cross country skis ....The skis are signed "ROSSIGNOL"!! The skis measure 79" long (205 cm)...all original!!  Have 3 pin bindings. Have a pair of ski poles that measures 53" long (the poles can be changed for a different length if you need). Ready to use...in great condition.
post #4 of 12
First, start with a waxless or no wax ski. Not sure where you live but craigslist is very good here. I got 3 pairs for $25 each but is was in the summer. I do a search on craigslist for "skis" then bookmark it and check it every day. The bonus is you can try on any boots and see the gear. If you are new to the game I'd go to a shop first to talk and get an idea of what would be good for you.
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Wooley, thanks for getting back with me. I live in a pretty small town, so I don't have any shops I can stop by. The closest big Craig's List city is about 2 hours away. I think one of the skis from the above list is waxless, so I'm leaning towards that set. Maybe it's because we're in season, but eBay has a ton of supplies right now.
post #6 of 12
Used XC packages go for $50 to $100 at re-use centers, resellers such as Play It Again Sports, garage sales, Craig's list, etc.  $150 for new sounds reasonable.

But I'd educate yourself a bit first so you don't pay through the nose for obsolete junk.

As for bindings, the two most common systems today are NNN and SNS.  Either should be fine, but your boots must match the bindings for it to work.  Older stuff is probably best avoided, although I know people who still use it and are quite happy with it.

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ski_binding#Cross_country
post #7 of 12
Do not dismiss 3-pin bindings just because they were invented a long time ago.

3-pin 75mm (there was a 50mm race standard also) have a huge advantage over any system binding when it comes to breaking trail or steeper downhill control.    

DO dismiss chintzy 3-pin bindings, e.g. the wire closure ones.    Most of these are going to be older, because demand for ALL 3-pins was much greater then than today.    

Find a boot that fits, then get bindings to match that.     The boot you find must also be appropriate to the terrain you wish to ski.


$150 is a reasonable price to pay for -new- or barely used boots that *you know* will fit your foot and will perform outdoors.

$150 is a completely unreasonable price to pay for something you do not know will fit.

FWIW, it sounds like the E-bay listings you quote are for in-track skis.    

Those might be useful on skim-plowed streets or in prepared tracks, but those are useless when breaking trail on a golf course or meadow; you'd be better off with snowshoes.
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info. I can't find any package deals online for less than 220 (new). I don't have access to much where I live so I can't try anything on. The new sets have NNN binding, which I read is prefered. Where should I look as a Noob for the best deals?
post #9 of 12
e-bay and craig's list are good places for shopping, as is the teleturnaround forum on TelemarkTips.com.  Seriously, though, you're going to need to educate yourself a bit to figure out what you need.  The biggest thing you're going to need to know is what kind of terrain you're going to be skiing on.

XC comes in a variety of shapes and sizes.  I'm assuming that you're talking about "classic" style skiing - skate skiing is a whole different ballgame.

If you're going to be primarily skiing on groomed trails, snowmobile trails, plowed roads that still have snow on them, or other places where there's a trail broken, then the old style XC skis (skinny skis) will be fine.  I have a pair of them that are 30+ years old... I just switched out my 3-pin bindings and boots for newer technology this year and they'll likely be good to go for the next 30.  There was nothing wrong with my old binding/boot system... the boots were leather, though, that had gotten really hard and didn't fit well any more.  It is absolutely critical that your boots fit.

If you're going to be skiing places where you'll be breaking trail - backcountry roads and trails - then you'll want something fatter. Rossignol makes one called the Backcountry 90 that's just about perfect for the job.

In either case, get skis with scales on the bottom (waxless).  Waxing XC skis is a science, and a fiddly one at that.  Get going with the sport, see if you like it, before you invest in waxed XC skis.

If you're into rock climbing and know your climbing shoe size you can get yourself a head start sizing boots.  My ski boot size is about 2.5 sizes larger than my climbing shoe size... 40.5 vs 38.

post #10 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by links0311 View Post

Thanks for the info. I can't find any package deals online for less than 220 (new).
 

Stop looking for package deals unless the boot is spot-on for the terrain you want to ski. 

Find a good boot that fits the terrain you want to ski, get the binding that fits that boot.    Skis and poles are -easy- after that.
    
     Most noobs go to a touring center to figure all this out, including what size to get in ski boots (and which brands fit best).   (For ex a size 42 in Rossignol might be able to go down to size 40 Alpinas, depending on foot volume).     

I have my doubts as to whether NNN is appropriate for you;  you're apparently nowhere near a touring center which tells me you're likely to be breaking your own trails.      Which in turns implies NNN-BC or HeavyDuty 3pin, with an over-the-ankle boot.
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
These are all great replies. I found a place about 90 min. north of me that has 10-15k of groomed trails. I plan on taking a group up there to check it out. Most of the skiing I'll be doing will be the on the rail-to-trails we have about 2 miles from my house. Some of it is dirt some of it is paved, but it's flat. I think that'll be a good place to start. Thanks again. Keep the suggestions coming.
post #12 of 12
I agree with comprex: Find a boot that fits, then get bindings to match that.     The boot you find must also be appropriate to the terrain you wish to ski.

I think ebay is more expensive than CL. With the Olympics going on, you are probably better of renting at a local ski track (if you have one) and then waiting for end of season sales.

Also, changing bindings on skis is easy. I updated my old SNS to SNS Profil bindings, just unscrewed the old ones and screwed on the new ones. I had to plug one hole and drill one new starter hole. All very easy, believe me.

Most important thing to ask when buying boots: ARE THEY WATERPROOF? I replaced my old SNS boots w used Salomon SNS Profil compatible boots for $30,a nd the left boot leaks right over the big toe. I put some old Dewatex on it, and they have not leaked since, but... but get the best boots you can afford. They last years and are worth it.
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