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Sultan 80/85 vs. Rossi S80 vs. Watea 84 vs. ???????

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Can anyone give me an idea of how these three skis match up against each-other as well as if there are others that should be in the conversation. I'd appreciate a general comparison and then a specific analysis of which one might be appropriate for me.

 

About me: 26 years old, 5'10", 190 lbs, athletic build--expert skier.  Most skiing done in the East at Killington, Sunday River, Jay, etc. Most of the day spent in the trees, on bumps, with 30-40% of the day spent cruising all over the mountain--carving if you will. Currently on a pair of 2007 Salmon X wing 08's (70mm under waist) and looking for something less stiff and wider to accommodate the trees, bumps, and occasional powder days. As most of my skiing is done in the East on hard pack, man-made snow, I am still looking for something that can dig in and hold an edge (even if I have to do more of the work). THANK YOU!!

post #2 of 28
You're a 190lb athletic expert skier, and you're looking for something less stiff than the Xwing 8's? That wasn't exactly a stiff, demanding ski...

confused.gif
post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 

Thanks. That was helpful. 

post #4 of 28

Welcome to the forum. FYI:  a lot of people ask these types of questions and don't provide good or accurate info. I wouldn't take it personal.

 

Are you perhaps overstating your ability? I am not trying to be condescending towards you. It's just that a 190-pound exeprt skier wouldn't be skiing on an X-Wing 8 to begin with and probably wouldn't ask the specific question that you did. There is conflicting info in your post.

 

If you want good info, it is important to be realistic about your abilities and experience or you will get bad info. Again, I am not beuing rude and you can find good info here. The fact is, most people who read your post( and from the way you stated things) would immediately come to the conclusion that something is not right with this picture.

 

What terrain do you like to ski and what terrain do you ski most of the time? If you provide this info, people can offer some good suggestions. If you are not candid about your info you will just get useless advice.

post #5 of 28

Skithatrees I can give you info on Watea 84's. I'm 6' 205lb strong skier. Had a pair of Watea 84 at 176cm, skied them all over Killington for 2 years in most every condition. Handle pretty much anything very well except boiler plate. Likes soft snow/ powder but rips up crud and tracked off snow . Hard pack and groomer zoomers they have ok grip, will definitely lay some arcs down if that's what you like to do. Loved them in the bumps and trees like Devils Fiddle, Julio, Escapde etc.Would turn quickly and absorb bumps with out kicking you back, very nice flex to them. I can't say how they would compare to the other skis you listed, I  never skied them.

post #6 of 28
Thread Starter 

I appreciate your candor. I am not overstating my abilities. I'm not sure what the requirements are for "expert", but I've skied my whole life, done everything there is to do at Whistler, Snowbird, Alta as well as all the mountains in the East. I spend most of my time doing fairly steep tree skiing at Killington and Jay Peak.  I don't huck cliffs or hit the park at all---just a typical aggressive all mountain skier. As far as my current skis go, I was given the X-wings free of charge and did not hesitate to take them. I really can't say I know how they compare to other skis as I've skied on them for 3 years and before that I had a pair of "original" Salomon equippes. Let me know if I can provide more info. I will admit that I have not historically paid much attention to ski gear so perhaps my description doesn't make sense to people who spend a lot of time demo'ing gear. I come from the mindset that the skier is much more responsible for the performance of the ski than the ski itself so I'm sure I've been missing out on a lot of better skis these past 3 years. Hence my desire to learn more about the skis I mentioned in the OP.  

post #7 of 28
Thread Starter 

Thanks....those trails are exactly the type I'm talking about. 

post #8 of 28
Alright, let me take another stab at being more helpful. The reason for my original response was exactly what MojoMan said, something didn't make sense. Now, knowing a little more about your background, it makes a little more sense to me.

You state that you want something less stiff and wider. My counter to that would be: how do you know? You've been skiing on skis that sound like they're under your skill level for a few years, and it sounds like you haven't demo'ed anything in, well, ever? Certainly not anything modern it sounds like. So have you been on skis that are both softer and stiffer than your current x-wings? If not, what is it that makes you think you want something softer? What are the limitations of your current skis that you're trying to improve upon?

I've been where you were before, hadn't been paying too much attention to what's out there, hadn't demo'ed in forever, had been skiing on the same pair of skis for a while. The most eye-opening thing that I did was to demo, because I could start to align my personal experiences and preferences with what I was reading. I think all the reading in the world is only marginally useful until you've at least skied a couple of the skis you're reading about. Back to your original skis, the Sultan 85 is pretty widely regarded as one of the better all-mountain skis in the 80's, so if you are looking for something to demo, it would be a good place to start.
post #9 of 28
Thread Starter 

Negative aspects about my current ski:

  1. Way too narrow under foot for any amount of fresh snow. Last year at Jay I sunk in 8"-10" of fresh snow--basically impossible to maneuver the ski. 
  2. Not as quick-turning as I would like in the steep trees and bumps. The edge holds very well--almost too well sometimes that it makes it difficult to make extremely quick/short turns in the trees.
  3. Too hard/stiff. Not as much give/flex/whatever you want to call it on the bumps.

 

post #10 of 28

Hmmm. Your current ski is not stiff by any means. But it's a narrow carver, so maybe what you're noticing is that carvers aren't happy in bumps and trees unless they have unconventional shapes like the Contact series from Dynastar. Notice that trees like a far fatter ski than groomer bumps. But I'd suggest something in the mid 80's to low 90's, with a softer tail, less sidecut, and more taper to it, like a Blizzard Cronus (09's can be had cheaply right now) or the Sultan 85; alternatively a softer twin like a K2 Extreme is nice for your tasks. If you have the $$, some of the new "groomer rockers" might be the ticket.

 

OTOH, if your terrain is more eastern groomers with mogulfields, and the trees often have icy or settled snow between them by the time you get to them, then I'd go instead for something like a Contact 11/10 whatever the hell it's called now; maybe at your weight a shorter 4x4. Contacts have great shape for firm snow in trees or bumps, handle light pow nicely, grip like a hellhound. 

post #11 of 28
Thread Starter 

Thanks. I have heard consistently positive things about the Sultan 85. Are there any significant changes between last year's model and this year's? It would be nice to save some sheckles. 

post #12 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiThaTrees View Post

Thanks. I have heard consistently positive things about the Sultan 85. Are there any significant changes between last year's model and this year's? It would be nice to save some sheckles. 

Same ski, different graphics. And there are definitely some great deals out there on the '10's that are still left.
post #13 of 28

I had a pair of Watea 84's and now have the Sultan 85's.  I prefer the Sultan of the Watea.  They probably don't ski all that different from each other in soft snow but on harder snow you need to stay on top of the Watea or its a miserable ride.  If you get the slightest bit lazy the ski chatters and skips across the surface.  Now if you ski it aggressively there is no problem but I found that you could not get lazy on it.  The Sultan on the other hand does everything well.  I've skied it in bumps and at 40+ MPH on Midwestern boiler plate and have been nothing but impressed.

post #14 of 28
Thread Starter 

Awesome. Any idea what the general consensus is on the standard PX 12 Fluid binding mount vs. something else? I've traditionally been a Marker guy but I would consider the PX 12 if there are significant benefits. 

post #15 of 28

Interesting thread.  I've skiied the Sultan 85's and the Watea 84's which I now currently own, so my preference is obvious.  My observations are almost 180 degrees polar of cstreu1026, which just goes to prove the "different strokes for different folks" theory yet again.

 

Based on things I've read here, I thought for sure the Sultans would be the perfect ski for me.  Demoed them and just couldn't ever really get my hands around them and felt like they were too much work.  The Wateas, while not that impressive the guy at the ski shop, spoke to me.

 

I do NOT ski in the East however, so take my input with a grain of salt.

 

Good luck!


post #16 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiThaTrees View Post

Awesome. Any idea what the general consensus is on the standard PX 12 Fluid binding mount vs. something else? I've traditionally been a Marker guy but I would consider the PX 12 if there are significant benefits. 

 

 

I have the standard PX12 on mine.  I've never had any problems with any bindings I have ever owned though be it Atomic/ESS, Marker, Tyrolia, Rossignol, and Look.
 

      Quote:

Originally Posted by elduderino View Post

Interesting thread.  I've skiied the Sultan 85's and the Watea 84's which I now currently own, so my preference is obvious.  My observations are almost 180 degrees polar of cstreu1026, which just goes to prove the "different strokes for different folks" theory yet again.

 

Based on things I've read here, I thought for sure the Sultans would be the perfect ski for me.  Demoed them and just couldn't ever really get my hands around them and felt like they were too much work.  The Wateas, while not that impressive the guy at the ski shop, spoke to me.

 

I do NOT ski in the East however, so take my input with a grain of salt.

 

Good luck!


I wouldn't say the Wateas were demanding.  In fact in most conditions I thought they were pretty easy to ski.  However on harder snow you couldn't get lazy because they wanted to skip across the snow.  

 

The Sultans aren't the best at anything but I've found it to be the most well rounded ski I've tried.  If you get a chance to demo some skis you may also want to look at the new Sultan 94.  It should offer a lot more float and I wouldn't worry about the extra width. 
 

post #17 of 28

I have a pair of 2007/2008 dyna 8000's with the fluid binding. 

My biggest complaint about this binding is that it only adjusts

in 7mm increments at the toe.  I'd recommend a binding that

has no more than 3mm increments to really appreciate the

sultan 85's.

 

Tom

post #18 of 28

If you're not going to offer some positive assistance...why bother to comment? 

 

post #19 of 28

Frankly, I have always preferred the Fluid Bindings, as I have read they make the ski a bit stiffer (Not what you said you want). Also when it comes time to sell them, it is easy for the next guy to have them adjusted without remounting the bindings.  As far as the above comment on the 7mm toe adjustments, I am clueless what they are referring to, as I never had a problem adjusting them between my 315 bsl and a friends boot size when they wanted to try my skis.  The Sultan 85 is to narrow for any sort of powder use IMO. The Sultan 85 has great edge grip, works well in bumps and is my everyday ski for hard snow conditions.  I have wider skis for any sort of powder day.

post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by hellboy51 View Post

If you're not going to offer some positive assistance...why bother to comment? 

 



I'm nominating this for most unintentionally ironic first time post.

post #21 of 28

Not to turn you off the Sultans or Wateas, but I went with Nordica HR Jet Fuels last year (smoking deal from Start Haus).  My old skis were a pair of Head skis that were made for the rental market, soft and easy to learn on.  I was a bit hesitant to get the Jet Fuels as I thought they might be too much ski for me - I'd classify myself as a advanced intermediate.  It turned out to be one of the best purchases I ever made.  Fast, stable, forgiving are some of the adjectives that come to mind.  I'm really, really happy with the way they ski.

post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by aschick View Post



I'm nominating this for most unintentionally ironic first time post.



agreed...did anyone else notice the 1 year old thread bump?

post #23 of 28

Yeah, Hellboy was just itching to make a comment.  Climbed back into his hole afterwards, apparently.  Normally we welcome 1st posters more courteously, but your comment is right on, Aschick.

post #24 of 28

I own the 09 sultan 85, so I am not sure what I have to say really counts since the skis were changed slightly in 2010, but I back up what others have said. It doesn't excel at any one part of the mountain, but does well in most. I would not consider it to be a powder ski however. It will do well in 6"-8". I think its swing weight is at the top end of the scale for me as far as bumps and trees are, but I weigh only 155 and ski the 172.

post #25 of 28

I agree...what was I thinking? I'm such an idiot!!!

 

Oh, wait, that sounds a bit negative...I'm such a great guy!!! There...whew...balance in the universe again.

 

post #26 of 28

lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by aschick View Post



I'm nominating this for most unintentionally ironic first time post.



 

post #27 of 28

I don't know if it's in my head but I find my sultan 85 (2011) a little bite firmer that the 2012...

They really are good skis that helpes me to improve a lot last year ( mostly at jay where I can ski almost anything...at my own speed...biggrin.gif). I feel confident with them anywhere! The only con is that I find them blah ( lacking some liveliness, some snap...)... That' why I know have a pair of Kendo too!

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiThaTrees View Post

Thanks. I have heard consistently positive things about the Sultan 85. Are there any significant changes between last year's model and this year's? It would be nice to save some sheckles. 



 

post #28 of 28

I have the 2010 sultans and ski the east primarily at hunter weekly and killington a few times a year...the ski turns on a dime, great on hardpack, decent on ice, and can be versatile enough for powder.  I skied them in alta last year in 12 inches of pow and had a blast...I also have dynastar cross contact tis that I am looking to unload since the sultans do it all for me and all out east....also have tsts for that heavier pow day since I can never be happy with only one toy...sultans are my everyday runner

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