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Piste skis for technical progression

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I've been thinking about getting a pair of piste skis for a while now, partly because I spend a fair amount of time on piste here in Sweden (short pistes, and often hard/man-made) and partly to help me work on the myriad technical deficiencies in my skiing. My usual skis are Kore 93s, 171 cm long (so actually 91 mm underfoot) and these work pretty well for me as all mountain/off piste skis. But a week of instruction on the SOPiB has really reinforced my need to work on balance, edge control and movement, all of which I think would be easier on narrower skis. Plus I'm back down to 1 serviceable pair of skis, so n+1 is definitely a factor.

So I think I'm looking for something around 70-75 underfoot, full camber (or perhaps a touch of tip rocker), with a shortish radius. I'm about 65 kg, 175 cm tall and probably upper intermediate - I can ski most pistes in control (proper icy steeps/moguls can still be a problem - not hardpack, blue ice) but variable snow off piste is more of a challenge and highlights the aforementioned deficiencies. I'm not a particularly aggressive skier. I ski probably 70/30 on and off piste, locally in Scandinavia and also the Alps. My boots have WTR soles which can be a problem with system bindings (grip walk now dominating) so ideally I'm after flat skis so I can quiver killer for my existing bindings. That also has the advantage of reducing weight which matters when flying (and lugging >1 pair around).

I've not demoed many piste-biased skis. Of the ones I have, I really liked the Kneissl Red Star RCs (162s) - lots of energy and really easy to turn. Rossi Hero Elite STi (167) gave great grip but I struggled to bend them. Volkl Rtm 84 UVOs (172) were great but the bindings aren't compatible with my boots (and they're probably a bit wide really, and heavy).

Any suggestions as to what I should try to demo at Easter? I suspect the Head V-shape V8 might be what I'm looking for but the bindings don't work; iRally is another possibility with the same binding issue plus it might be a bit strong for me.

Or should I just stick with the Kores? I will be getting lessons whatever I do about skis.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Have you tried a pair of Head Magnums yet?

These are a great fun ski particularly good at carving, I always tried to get hold of them when I rent skis.
I particularly like the Kneissls Red Stars too, but I have a pair of Black Stars.

Last year I wanted to rented a pair of piste skis at the Oxalys Hotel, I was dissapointed when they gave me a pair of
Salomon X-Max X12s ... they looked dull as ditch water in black and white.

But after I used them for about an hour I realised they were a brilliant ski. I think I like them just as much as the Magnums.

They are on offer at:
https://www.snowinn.com/ski-store/salomon-x-max-x12-z12-walk/136938142/p?utm_source=google_products&utm_medium=merchant&id_producte=7512698&country=uk&gclid=Cj0KCQjwg73kBRDVARIsAF-kEH_w89ODUUE7keSzrQoWdlyVm0CWEwEANb1a44Z58E2viXktd_ZUvnIaAolpEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds

Unbelievably cheap price, for a ski I think is just brill.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@DrLawn, no, not tried the Magnums. Good call, if I can find them with a WTR binding (the WTR thing could be a real limiter).
I've skied the black star xcs too and wasn't overly taken by them. They were very smooth but compared to the red stars lacked zing. There's a fair chance that's the Indian rather than the arrow though, and I would def try them again if I had the chance.
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@mgrolf,
Something no more than 70 underfoot and a radius less than 18m should work.

Why are you worried about bindings?
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@stewart woodward, because many/most alpine bindings aren't compatible with my boots. They have semi-rockered walk to ride soles.
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You'll need to Register first of course.
Check out the Atomic options with the Warden bindings - they are WTR compatible Happy
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@DanishRider, thanks, I'll have a look at what Atomic offers.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
My piste skis are Salomon X Max 8X.

https://www.snowandrock.com/p/salomon-x-max-x8-skis-xt10-bindings-J1314332.html

These have a 73mm waist and a 17m radius, making them very easy to carve aggressively and huge fun for on piste skiing. They are stiff without being too stiff, so handle crud brilliantly and turn initiation is super fast. Grip on icy/hardpack piste is great. They flatter my ability and have encouraged me to push my skiing every time I go out.

I doubt they will work with your boots, but wonder if the boots are going to mean so many great piste skis are not available to you. Maybe think about some new boots too.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@bar shaker, thanks, I'll keep an eye out for possibilities with the x-max range. Is the 8 narrower than the 12 that @DrLawn,mentions, or less burly?

You're right about the wtr limitation but... I'm not in the market for new boots, current ones were new this year (and a right pain to get right) and I'm not up for carrying multiple boots as well as skis. If that limits my piste ski choices, so be it - part of the point of this thread is to try to tap into SHs knowledge to identify the unusual piste skis that are available flat (or with a compatible binding). If I have to, I'd consider removing a system binding and remounting (if that's possible, it probably isn't), rather than getting new boots. Cost (within reason) isn't the biggest factor here, flexibility and convenience is more important.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Volkl Code S perhaps? I have the longer Code Ls which I really enjoy on piste.

https://www.skiclub.co.uk/ski-tests/years/2018/volkl-code-s

think it's been replaced by the RTM this year? https://www.voelkl.com/en/products/skis/piste-all-mountain/

Should be some good bargains starting to appear I'd reckon.

https://www.snowandrock.com/p/volkl-rtm-79-marker-ipt-wideridexl-12-gw-bindings-J1324196.html
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@mgrolf, can't beat the Dynastar Speed Zone range and the 12 Ti in either the 166 or 174 would be spot on for you. Their Konect rail binding system is excellent and the 17/18 ski came c/w either their SPX or NX Konect binding with a dual alpine/WTR toe. They switched to a dual alpine/GripWalk toe for this season but you might still be able to find a pair of last seasons skis. If you're interested I can see if I can get a pair from the factory for you with the WTR toe?
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
mgrolf wrote:
@bar shaker, thanks, I'll keep an eye out for possibilities with the x-max range. Is the 8 narrower than the 12 that @DrLawn,mentions, or less burly?

You're right about the wtr limitation but... I'm not in the market for new boots, current ones were new this year (and a right pain to get right) and I'm not up for carrying multiple boots as well as skis. If that limits my piste ski choices, so be it - part of the point of this thread is to try to tap into SHs knowledge to identify the unusual piste skis that are available flat (or with a compatible binding). If I have to, I'd consider removing a system binding and remounting (if that's possible, it probably isn't), rather than getting new boots. Cost (within reason) isn't the biggest factor here, flexibility and convenience is more important.


The higher the X rating, the stiffer the ski, from what i can tell.

I've seen on Salomon's website that the 2019 skis have Gripwalk compatible bindings.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
I'd second @spyderjon's recommendation of the Dynastar Speed Zone. I'm similar dimensions to you, and have a pair of these. They knock my Head Titans (which are in themselves a pretty good ski) for six every time. @spyderjon did a fantastic job a couple of years ago getting the last pair in Europe imported and set up for me over Christmas so they were ready for my next trip, so I recommend getting them from him as well.
ski holidays     
 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
1. Skis, they are just planks of wood.

2. No need to overthink this.

3. Go to your favourite ski emporium and get the cheapest piste oriented (ie narrow) skis that: are your size, are intermediot or above, have bindings compatible with your boots.

5. Job Done
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@davidof, Laughing was wondering when someone would say this.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I'm with @spyderjon, and @kieranm, I have Head Supershape Magnums and Dynastar Speedzone 12. The Speedzones are fantastic skis. Smooth as silk.
snow conditions     
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
spyderjon wrote:
......Their Konect rail binding system is excellent and the 17/18 ski came c/w either their SPX or NX Konect binding with a dual alpine/WTR toe. They switched to a dual alpine/GripWalk toe for this season but you might still be able to find a pair of last seasons skis......

Correction to this ^: Whilst the 18/19 Pivot bindings are alpine/GW only the SPX/NX bindings, either flat mounted or on the Konect rail, will accept alpine, GW and WTR.

@mgrolf, Thanks for your PM, I've replied.
snow report     
 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
I really enjoyed the Supershape Magnums when I tried them however, I fell in love with the Atomic Redser X9s. They’re between a slalom and GS radius and only 65 under foot... they are amazing to ski. I have found them ok in all piste conditions including fresh snow. The only time I haven’t enjoyed them is skiing in powder off the edge of the piste - but that is likely as much to do with my ability as the skis... if you have a pair of fat skis for powder then I think worth considering a narrower ski for your n+1
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