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Elan Race SLX - Fischer RC4 Race SC - Rossignol R8S

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Since I have been using the Fischer RC4 Race SC Pro (08/09 version, 165 cm, 117-67-99) since last March and just recently had the opportunity to test 2 other skis mentioned above, I thought about sharing my experience in the hope of getting some feedback from the community.
Fischer: was a big step for me from a Blizzard Sigma FR 18 one year ago. Though I had been skiing for 25+ years, 100% on groomed red and blue (sometimes black) runs, I fell several times over at low speeds (sometimes just by trying to stand still) as I had been used to the much less stiff skis earlier. By now I think I can mostly handle it, but I still believe that my Fischer starts to excel just above a certain speed threshold and I do not always necessarily want to go that fast. In fact, I prefer keep improving my technique (there is a room for that.....) over speeding. Some might call that finesse skiing, or pensioner skiing :-) but hey, that is me. On the other hand, I also have to say that my Fischer is very stable at those high speeds and I am always impressed by its torsional stiffness; I just sometimes miss a bit more softness at the tip at low speeds and thought that while I still like it, there might be better options out there being closer to my preferred skiing style.
So, had the opprtunity to test the Elan Race SLX (09/10 version, R=12.9, 116-66-104, 165 cm, Waveflex, double Ti, woodcore, etc.) for something less than 2 hours at very nice and clear fast reds. All I could say after 3 seconds: WOW; fell in love pretty fast, butterysmooth and very easy to handle at low speeds (for me), similar torsional stiffness as the Fischer when put on edge though clearly a slightly less stability at higher speeds. However, here is the thing for me: I go fast with the Fischer mainly b/c IT clearly prefers a certain speed range, however, I stepped on the gas of the Elan b/c I liked the feeling of pure pleasure it provided. And again, this is a big difference to me. I think I will soon become an Elan fan, but before buying another ski, I want to check the similar, but even softer versions as well (Race SL, maybe Speedwave 14; I hear contradictory views whether it is stiffer, or softer than the other 2 Elan slalom skis; any views on that?).
Rossignol R8S (guess 09/10 version, R=12 124-70-112, 165 cm): interesting surprise as I was prepeared for a “soft French” ski and got something else; not worse, not better, but different. I think this model compares probably to the stiffer Rossi R9S model in the same way as my Race SC to the Fischer Worldcup SC (with just thicker double titanal). I had the impression that the Rossi was very similarly stiff as my Fischer, but had a different acceleration feeling. The Fischer is light and “jumps over” the low speed section to reach its preferred range, whilst the Rossi gets faster rather as trains do; in a very continuous manner. I am not sure, but a slightly higher weight might be the reason for that, too (though I could not find any justification for that over the web). So as I found it much closer to the Fischer feeling than I thought earlier, I think it does not make sense to me to switch to Rossi, for example.
All-in-all, I think I am tempted to get closer to the Elans (that was my first ever Waveflex ski under my feet), but will test more models in their palette.
Would highly appreciate some feedback/suggestions, or other people’s experience with these Elans.
 
Géza      
post #2 of 10
Doesn't sound like you need to test more or wait for others' opinions. You've skied a few skis in your candidate group. One of them stood out as head and shoulders above the rest and seems to work great for you.  Case closed.


Quote:
Originally Posted by geza View Post

So, had the opprtunity to test the Elan Race SLX (09/10 version, R=12.9, 116-66-104, 165 cm, Waveflex, double Ti, woodcore, etc.) for something less than 2 hours at very nice and clear fast reds. All I could say after 3 seconds: WOW; fell in love pretty fast, butterysmooth and very easy to handle at low speeds (for me), similar torsional stiffness as the Fischer when put on edge though clearly a slightly less stability at higher speeds. However, here is the thing for me: I go fast with the Fischer mainly b/c IT clearly prefers a certain speed range, however, I stepped on the gas of the Elan b/c I liked the feeling of pure pleasure it provided.

[snip]
Would highly appreciate some feedback/suggestions, or other people’s experience with these Elans.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi qcanoe,

tx for the reply . The only reason I have been seeking for others' view is that I get the impression tht the more skis I test, the more important it is to do so. Even small differences make sometimes indeed considerable difference in the way how different skis feel e.g. the only difference I know between the Fischer WC SC and my Race SC is that the first uses 0.8 mm thick titanal reinforcement, whilst the latter 0.5; and you can indeed feel that when you put it onto its edge on an icy slope. So, as I get the feeling the Waveflex skis might be the way to go for me, I do not want to jump immediately into one model before getting some alternative view and/or testing the other models in this line, from Elan at least (SL, SW 14, or 12, etc.).   
post #4 of 10
What you're really saying here is that for better or worse - probably worse - you've fallen into the same gear whore pit many of us here live in, and now realize that there is not now and never will be "the one ski" for you. From here on out, your ski gear life will follow the same pattern of trajectory: test, fall out of love, test, test, fall in love, spend too much money, test, test, fall out of love, test, ad nauseam.
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

What you're really saying here is that for better or worse - probably worse - you've fallen into the same gear whore pit many of us here live in, and now realize that there is not now and never will be "the one ski" for you. From here on out, your ski gear life will follow the same pattern of trajectory: test, fall out of love, test, test, fall in love, spend too much money, test, test, fall out of love, test, ad nauseam.
 

SO TRUE!!!!!

Every time I go skiing I look to see what ski would  be perfect these current conditions. I said "current" instead of "today's" because many times I'll change skis as conditions change. Then you will have so much quiver overlap that you actually start micro managing. You even demo a ski you have no interest in because the one you do like isn't available.

Forget quiver, they usually have only 5 arrows in it. We should call it a golf bag....And I need a caddy!

Finding an all mountain ski was way easier when skis were straight. Near impossible with shaped skis.




 

 

post #6 of 10
A large part of my job is testing skis, I have been a huge fan of the Fischer RC4 SC for many seasons, but mainly because they are capable of going so fast on groomers with total edge hold where other skis would have started to let go. I am not talking about real race skis here.
From the description of the runs you like to ski the earlier RC4 SC would have been fine although overkill for the job, the more recent RC4 SC are less forgiving at lower speeds and really are best suited to skiers who ski fast most of the time.
I think you would be better off on a less demanding ski like the Progressor 8 if you like Fischer for the Blue / Black runs on groomed snow, the Progressor 8 still has great edge hold but is way more user friendly at the lower speeds, I also found a new ski for 2011 that has better edge hold than the RC4 SC at high speed, yet is so easy to use at low speeds and that is the new Blizzard G force Pro, not to be confused with a ski of a similar name the Blizzard Force G pro, the G force pro is an all black ski with Orange writing. see a picture here of the ski I used. http://www.paulski.com.au/image/forcepro.jpg
The Elan Waveflex 14 are great skis but I thought they had a little too much edge hold for a skier without almost perfect carving ability, they are a ski that holds the turn radius of that ski very well, but can be tiring if you want to vary that radius.
I haven't tried that particular Rossignol ski.

I am thinking if you don't spend a lot of time on black runs at high speed you appear to be aiming at skis that are making it harder for you to use than you need too.
post #7 of 10
Now you just need to test Volkl, Atomic and Blizzard ;)
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thank you all for the feedback, I think they are mostly valid one way or another. 

Yes, I think I know what you mean when it comes to gear worship (sailing and photography are also my hobbies). First half of this season I spent some time with testing other models, too, as I was unsure that I had made a good decision last March when buying into the Race SC, but to my slight surprise, in each such model I then started to miss what I liked in the Fischer. So I thought it was even better as I "only" needed to upgrade my technique instead of switching gear, not to mention saving some cash this way when I tried the Elan that made me thinking, though. In fact, even the Head Supershape Magnum that was very easy to turn did not make me really thinking till I tried the Elan.

And I know there is never such thing as perfect one ski as hundreds of other issues can impact this constantly (my fitness, snow conditions, temperature, etc.), but I wanted to be "sure" that the only bottleneck, or inconsistency in my setup is my technique, not the gear. Then I do not think I would have seriously looked around for the next 2-3 years.

Thanks for the tip on the Progressor 8+ and infos on the SW 14: I myself also wanted to test the P8+, but it was not available at my size (they had 155 cm length and I am using 165 cm versions being 182 cm (close to 6 feet) tall). And it might be quite possible that I should target skis just a bit below the range I am looking now;  the only thing I know that I started to use the Race SC due to its prime edgehold on icy steeps and when I tried the Völkl Tiger 3 Motion subsequently, I reached down the ski lift slower than my wife (!) as it took me so much effort not to slip away on the icy patches; it just did not seem to be able to hold my 89 kilogramms (196 lbs). So I should be looking for something in between, probably.

I had also been thinking of some Blizzard models (maybe the Blizzard G-Force Sonic IQ), but have not yet had the opportunity to test them. In any event, this will be a topic in the next season only as here in Europe (I typically ski in Austria) we are getting closer and closer to the end of the season. 

Tx again for the valuable feedback.

Happy skiing!
Géza
post #9 of 10
Geza,

you might want to try and find a fischer RX8. I ski the older RC4 Race SC's and they're everything Paulski says and they're not too demanding (actually, very easy to ski at most speeds with great edgehold, and you're probably a much better skier than I). The RX8 from '08 on, at least by what I've read and have been told by the Fischer reps, is the same ski as the old Race SC.
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi scoops,

I thought about that earlier as well - in connection with the Progressor 8+ - and I will probably try this scenario as well, although I do not seem to see this ski selling as new in the shops any longer, but you never know.

Géza
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