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Best piste skis for fast carving

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@Timc thanks that's really interesting.

I've found a 160cm poplar Elite Plus TI with NX12 bindings (think 2019/2020) for a decent price, although I guess it's now an older ski:

https://www.speck-sports.com/en/men-s-skis-packs/34352-rossignol-hero-elite-plus-ti-ski-pack-nx-12-konect-gw-b80-black--chrome-bindings-3607683532537.html

Also a 160 Elite Plus TI with SPX 12 bindings but not sure of the year or wood:

https://www.easy-gliss.com/en/ski/alpine-skiing/material/ski-sets-bindings/ski-hero-elite-plus-ti-bindings-spx-12-konect-gw-b80-bk-icon-3607683532537-8499.html

Will probably be deciding between that and a 2021/22 167cm Elite MT TI, though possibly will be £100 cheaper depending on taxes.

Do you know why they've dropped the Plus TI? I've only heard great things about it.


Last edited by Poster: A snowHead on Mon 18-04-22 22:17; edited 1 time in total
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menatarms wrote:

I've found a 160cm poplar Elite Plus TI with NX12 bindings (think 2019/2020) for a decent price, although I guess it's now an older ski:

The info near the bottom says it's from the 2022 Collection.

And it has a 2022 MTi at 159 (which I think you spotted) for a bit cheaper.

It's all fairly confusing.
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Ah ok, weird because it says poplar (peuplier) in the material. Yeah there are some MT TI's around going for fairly cheap. Indeed it's really confusing.
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RAJLB01/RRJ01LB the model/ski refererences that Speck and Easy-Gliss quote are 20/21 models first appearing in the 20/21 catalogue with Ash as the core. The third letter of the model is Rossignol's way of indicating year of manufacture. My skis are RRH01LB, H=2018/19, 2019/20 were RRI02LB, 2020/2021 were RRJ01LB. Rossignol still sold them in 21/22 but were from the same manufacture run RRJ01LB and have dropped them from the 22/23 range.

The ones that you can find online are the last available.

Speck sports will be wrong quoting Poplar,
You can check out all the Rossi catalogues on Issuu 21/22 here https://issuu.com/zuzupopo/docs/rossignol_2122_alpine 20/21 here https://issuu.com/levnelyze/docs/rossignol_alpin_20_21_gb_web
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@Timc wow! That's some impressive detective work! Thanks so much! I saw the 2023 MT TI model coming out is slightly different, but if I can get the 2022 model for approx. £300 that's too good a saving to pass up.

https://www.insideoutskiing.com/level.html

According to these categories I'm probably a level 9 advanced, do you think the ash wood ski would be too much? Still waiting to hear back from the various retailers.
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menatarms wrote:
@Timc wow! That's some impressive detective work! Thanks so much! I saw the 2023 MT TI model coming out is slightly different, but if I can get the 2022 model for approx. £300 that's too good a saving to pass up.

https://www.insideoutskiing.com/level.html

According to these categories I'm probably a level 9 advanced, do you think the ash wood ski would be too much? Still waiting to hear back from the various retailers.

No wonder it's confusing.

As to which model - Almost impossible for someone else to know.

FWIW. All I can tell you, is what I would do if unable to try them - I would go with the Poplar Core......but if there was a large saving, might easily take the risk. Ash will be more stable and require more constant technical input; Poplar will be a little more forgiving and a little more playful.
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Ok, heard back from easy gliss will have to pay UK VAT on delivery, so it's between a 160cm Rossi Plus TI (ash), a Head E-Magnum 163cm, a Volkl Deacon 74 in 163 or 168cm, all of these are around £480-500, or the Rossi MT TI 167cm for £380. Really not sure will have to give it some thought, I honestly don't know which is offering the best value. So far the 2023 equivalent skis seem to be around the £750 mark.

I did find the idea of the Plus TI holding up well in late day conditions thanks to the 78mm underfoot to be very appealing though, HEAD haven't changed the Magnum for 2023 and it sells very well so it must be doing something right, the Deacon in 168 offers that longer length. Decisions, decisions.
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@menatarms, have you talked to @Spyderjon at the Piste Office? He would be able to give you authoritative advice, and quite likely a very good deal on a suitable ski. I think he's at the EoSB this week so may be out of office, but if you can wait a week or so, that would be a very good option.
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mgrolf wrote:
@menatarms, have you talked to @Spyderjon at the Piste Office? He would be able to give you authoritative advice, and quite likely a very good deal on a suitable ski. I think he's at the EoSB this week so may be out of office, but if you can wait a week or so, that would be a very good option.


Hi, thanks for that tip, no I wasn't aware of the Piste Office, I'll pop them a message.
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@menatarms, Contacting Spyderjon is very good advice.

Of the skis you are looking at, that only one I have been on, is the Magnum (model from a few years ago).....and would be relatively confident you would like them. Aside from that, I look forward to what you decide.

I have liked any Rossi I've been on....but it's been a few years now. I seem to remember a Zenith Z9 being excellent.
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Old Fartbag wrote:
@menatarms

Of the skis you are looking at, that only one I have been on, is the Magnum (model from a few years ago).....


I have an old model too and I like them.

Otherwise I have heard good things about these

https://www.blossomski.com/?lang=en
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ster wrote:
Old Fartbag wrote:
@menatarms

Of the skis you are looking at, that only one I have been on, is the Magnum (model from a few years ago).....


I have an old model too and I like them.

Otherwise I have heard good things about these

https://www.blossomski.com/?lang=en


Thanks, yes it seems a really popular ski. I'll take a look at the blossom skis, I hadn't heard of them before.

Jon very kindly returned my call from Val Thorens, and we've arranged to speak next week when he's back, looking forward to his recommendation.
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I've got Nordica Doberman Spitfire Ti. If carving is what you crave, they are fantastic in my opinion.
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@menatarms, The UK importer for Blossom skis is Ski Bitz.
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@FastCarver74, I think you actually want Dobermann SL-Rs wink
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 Poster: A snowHead
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rjs wrote:
@menatarms, The UK importer for Blossom skis is Ski Bitz.


Yes, give Nige a ring there, or if you want to see them in the flesh he has put a few pairs in Altimus on High Street Ken

https://www.altimusoutdoor.com/
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The blossoms look interesting but out of my price range unfortunately to be honest.
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under a new name wrote:
@FastCarver74, I think you actually want Dobermann SL-Rs wink


While I'm sure they're a great ski (I've not skiied them since a previous iteration some years back) fast, long, carving turns are really not what a race slalom ski like that is designed for. Yes, one can carve on anything if one is good enough, I do so on my GS Stoecklis, my new Head i-Race Slaloms and my fat (122mm waist) old Saloman Rocker2s, but for best/easiest results it's best to stick with the tool best designed for the job in hand.

All else apart, going for an ultra-stiff race-level ski is not ideal for someone who's asking what's best, as the question clearly implies that they're not quite at the level where it shouldn't matter.
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Old Fartbag wrote:
menatarms wrote:
Does anyone know the difference between the Rossi Konect bindings and the R22 bindings?

IIRC. The R22 is the same Race Plate that was used for the Dynastar (sister company) Speed Zone, turning the 12Ti into the 14Ti. It is supposed to make quite a difference. My advice, is that because you are light and not looking for something too hardcore, would be to go with the Konect, which should be fine.


Interesting, I didn’t know that. I bought SpeedZone 14 with the race plates because I found them cheaper than the 12s. Didn’t realise the plate did anything other than help keep the boot attached to the ski. I’ve never tried the 12s so don’t know if I’d notice the difference but I love my SpeedZone 14s. They’re super stable at speed and I seem to spend more time carving and less time skidding compared to my old Head Titans.
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Valkyrie wrote:

Interesting, I didn’t know that. I bought SpeedZone 14 with the race plates because I found them cheaper than the 12s. Didn’t realise the plate did anything other than help keep the boot attached to the ski. I’ve never tried the 12s so don’t know if I’d notice the difference but I love my SpeedZone 14s. They’re super stable at speed and I seem to spend more time carving and less time skidding compared to my old Head Titans.

Some knowledgeable comments from another thread:

Raceplate: The R22 is the high performance plate, Konect is the more forgiving version. I would expect the difference between them to mostly be in how the tail behaves - R22 will accelerate more with more rebound so if you're not well centred on the ski it's going to bite you, particularly in bumps. Konect should give you a split second to recover before it bites you if you're out of balance. Looking at the design, the R22 also has a much shorter overhang on the front so the tip should engage slightly earlier too. If you ski multiple weeks a year (or are super strong/fit/experienced) I'd take the R22, if you're a one/two week holiday skier I'd take the Konect.

spyderjon: Konect is a consumer rail system not a race plate. Due to play between the rail and the binding the Konect system is nowhere near as positive as the R22 plate set-up. The Konect system has separate plastic toe and heel rails each with four fixed position screws (which limits the ski flex underneath) and the transparent plastic piece connecting the two rails has no function other than aesthetic. The R22 plate is a proper metal layered race plate that's a little stiffer longitudinally but with far greater torsional stiffness and is attached with only one pair of fixed position screws at each end and the other pair of fixings are floating studs to allow uninterrupted flexing of the ski underneath. Furthermore the bindings on the R22 are screwed directly to the plate to remove any play in the interface.

The Konect system has the SPX 12 binding whereas the R22 plate is predrilled for the SPX 14/15 Rockerace binding which is a higher spec with a heel mounting pattern designed specifically for use on the R22 plate to ensure free flexing of the ski.

The other benefit of the R22 plate is that it's waaaay easier to shim the toes or heels to adjust the delta angle - in fact Look offer aftermarket skims'n'screw kits specifically for this purpose.
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Is there a significant difference between the SPX12 and NX12 bindings?
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menatarms wrote:
Is there a significant difference between the SPX12 and NX12 bindings?

I think the Heel is more sophisticated in the SPX, as it gives a greater elasticity of movement before it releases......but that is really a Spyderjon question. As you are light, I suspect you will be fine with either....but the SPX is better.
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Old Fartbag wrote:
menatarms wrote:
Is there a significant difference between the SPX12 and NX12 bindings?

I think the Heel is more sophisticated in the SPX, as it gives a greater elasticity of movement before it releases......but that is really a Spyderjon question. As you are light, I suspect you will be fine with either....but the SPX is better.


Ok thanks, in the mean time I'm looking to pick up some cheap 2nd hand slalom skis to thrash around dry slopes (yes I'm that keen!) to practice technique drills. There's some blizzard s power 6.8 skis on ebay that if I can arrange pick up for look a really good deal. There's a place nearish to me that's open late and very cheap, it's the old dendrex matting but hopefully will be fine for a bit of off season practice.
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My skis are Head carving skis. I purchased them in 2001. They are 190's. They have marker bindings.











I go off piste sometimes.
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@menatarms, dendex is the best
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Mother hucker wrote:
@menatarms, dendex is the best


think the last time I was on it was circa 2005 lol.
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menatarms wrote:
Mother hucker wrote:
@menatarms, dendex is the best


think the last time I was on it was circa 2005 lol.

For me, it was probably 1986.
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Old Fartbag wrote:
menatarms wrote:
Mother hucker wrote:
@menatarms, dendex is the best


think the last time I was on it was circa 2005 lol.

For me, it was probably 1986.


A year before I was born!

@BigTipper great photos!
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menatarms wrote:
Old Fartbag wrote:
menatarms wrote:
Mother hucker wrote:
@menatarms, dendex is the best


think the last time I was on it was circa 2005 lol.

For me, it was probably 1986.


A year before I was born!

I didn't need to know that!
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JamesHJ wrote:
Money no object? Keener on medium radius turns? Try the Rossi master skis in one of the shorter lengths.


I'm increasingly tempted by this, they've got rave reviews. The 2023 master has been split into long turn and short turn, very tempted by the long turn in 169cm (the graphics on the new model are especially nice too)! Just not sure I'm capable of using what I imagine is a very stiff ski, will ask Jon about poplar vs ash tomorrow. Also the master skis are very, very expensive, and not sure they're really suited for non race skiing (too fast to be safe in crowds)...

https://www.snowleader.co.uk/en/hero-master-lt-r22-spx15-forza-ROSS01984.html

Old Fartbag wrote:
I didn't need to know that!


Sorry!


Last edited by Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name: on Sun 24-04-22 21:18; edited 1 time in total
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@menatarms, If you are a 1 or 2 week a year holiday skier, I would be a little cautious about getting something too hardcore and lacking versatility. It's a delicate balance - and getting it wrong could cut your enjoyment and possibly confidence.

I think the likes of the Head Magnum, Dynastar Speed 763 or the Poplar Rossi, would give plenty of headroom, while still being manageable and fun.
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Old Fartbag wrote:
@menatarms, If you are a 1 or 2 week a year holiday skier, I would be a little cautious about getting something too hardcore and lacking versatility. It's a delicate balance - and getting it wrong could cut your enjoyment and possibly confidence.

I think the likes of the Head Magnum, Dynastar Speed 763 or the Poplar Rossi, would give plenty of headroom, while still being manageable and fun.


Thanks that's good advice, saves a lot of money too! May be able to ski weekends at Glenshee too (in addition to 2-3 weeks holiday skiing), although not sure yet (depends on some job stuff).
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menatarms wrote:
Old Fartbag wrote:
@menatarms, If you are a 1 or 2 week a year holiday skier, I would be a little cautious about getting something too hardcore and lacking versatility. It's a delicate balance - and getting it wrong could cut your enjoyment and possibly confidence.

I think the likes of the Head Magnum, Dynastar Speed 763 or the Poplar Rossi, would give plenty of headroom, while still being manageable and fun.


Thanks that's good advice, saves a lot of money too! May be able to ski weekends at Glenshee too (in addition to 2-3 weeks holiday skiing), although not sure yet (depends on some job stuff).

I think Jon sells both Head and Dynastar and should steer you right.

The offers at Glisshop are also getting sold....the 170 Magnums are sold out, but still have 163s.
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At the moment it's between what Jon can offer me and the rossi's (167cm MT TI for £370 seems hard to beat), really wish I could try out some of these skis first. Yes saw a lot of skis are being snapped up, may end up having to wait for the 2023 ranges to come along and pay a bit more.

Also figured out why I have such a Rossi bias, turns out Rossi test their skis at the resort my family have visited for 20 years!


http://youtube.com/v/Rf9_uqxlaCw

This great review (thanks to translate, forgive the cheesy beginning) convinced me the master is just a bit too demanding to be a fun all day ski, at least for my current level. He's partly skiing on my favourite ever piste (the end is particularly fun and you can really go flat out, hit your max speeds; on my unwaxed rentals I've only ever managed 75kmh though). He's ripping some really nice turns on what is a reasonably steep black (camera is always deceiving), but you can see it's taking a lot of physical strength to control his speed and he's a bigger guy and stronger skier than I am.

Watched the BASI exam criteria videos and I think in terms of the long turns I'm not far off the level 3 instructor level, but short turns and bumps probably a level 2.


http://youtube.com/v/xsQwSj2Vd3I
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@menatarms, On here, as a rule, people who own recreational racing skis, either live in the Alps; take multiple trips and/or have an alternative.

Slalom skis are a bit easier for a holiday skier, but tend not to be that versatile. My Atomic SL11s were really good fun and seemed to have a built-in "Easy" and a "Hard" setting - and were more versatile than I thought they would be. I did a lot of reading before getting them and bought them cheap in an end of season sale from S&R.....But I also had some Atomic Bet Ride 11.20.

IMV. Very "technical to use" skis really need to be tried first, especially before shelling out significant money. If you find them very cheap, it can be worth taking a punt.

Let us know which way you go.
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I spoke to Jon who was incredibly helpful. If I wanted to buy a ski right now he recommended the Dynastar Speed Master SL, but he advised best thing is to wait over the summer and attend the Snowheads Ski Test event he runs in October which sounds absolutely ideal to have a go on a variety of new season skis and pick up some at a nice discount, I'll definitely be there!

Regarding the Ash vs Poplar issue he said it's basically just marketing, an ash ski can be stiffer than a poplar ski and vice versa. He also mentioned to pay attention to the bindings, as some good skis are let down in that area. Also as I suspected, he said I should be on a stiffer boot flex, so will probably try to upgrade those next year. Thanks so much for pointing me in his direction, going to ask a friend or 2 if they want to come as well as I know they were thinking of new piste skis as well.
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menatarms wrote:
I spoke to Jon who was incredibly helpful. If I wanted to buy a ski right now he recommended the Dynastar Speed Master SL, but he advised best thing is to wait over the summer and attend the Snowheads Ski Test event he runs in October which sounds absolutely ideal to have a go on a variety of new season skis and pick up some at a nice discount, I'll definitely be there!

Regarding the Ash vs Poplar issue he said it's basically just marketing, an ash ski can be stiffer than a poplar ski and vice versa. He also mentioned to pay attention to the bindings, as some good skis are let down in that area. Also as I suspected, he said I should be on a stiffer boot flex, so will probably try to upgrade those next year. Thanks so much for pointing me in his direction, going to ask a friend or 2 if they want to come as well as I know they were thinking of new piste skis as well.

Sounds sensible to me....and you are in knowledgeable hands.

This explains the Dynastar Piste Ski range: https://skikitinfo.com/whats-new/2122/dynastar-s-line-skis/


Last edited by Then you can post your own questions or snow reports... on Mon 25-04-22 14:46; edited 1 time in total
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@menatarms, Having had the same pair of 190 carving skis for over 20 years now, I will highlight the downside as I saw it over that period.

1. The turning circle can be a bit wide when you are trying to navigate narrow off piste couloirs. I would look for a smaller ski now, maybe 180s.

2. The ski and binding instruction manual either did not exist, or I ignored them. The bindings had an on off switch, for a piston, which I never used for almost 18 years until I looked it up on the internet. I now turn it on sometimes! Read the instruction manual before you buy for the ski and the bindings if you can.

3. Learn how to wax and edge your own skis early, as you will probably do a better job and a more frequent wax. (eventually after making some mistakes)

4. My skis and bindings are quite heavy, and this can be a problem when you put them on your back and carry them with ski boots up a mountain before you ski. I would look for a lighter, smaller ski for this reason, which would make them easier to carry on a back pack. (obviously a snowboard would be easier, but I am too old to learn new games)

Not much of an issue for a 99% on piste skier, but over a period of time you might change what you want to do.
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Old Fartbag wrote:

Sounds sensible to me....and you are in knowledgeable hands.

This explains the Dynastar Piste Ski range: https://skikitinfo.com/whats-new/2122/dynastar-s-line-skis/


Looks very nice ski indeed, and really good value. I'm keen to try a mix of slalom skis and GS skis and see what I prefer, Jon mentioned as I'm quite light I'm better off on something a bit more narrow underfoot, so that 78mm Rossi plus TI may have been a bit wide for me. I do like to work up a sweat while skiing so something more sporty isn't really that off putting, think stiffer boots will really help in that area too.

Bigtipper wrote:
@menatarms, Having had the same pair of 190 carving skis for over 20 years now, I will highlight the downside as I saw it over that period.

1. The turning circle can be a bit wide when you are trying to navigate narrow off piste couloirs. I would look for a smaller ski now, maybe 180s.

2. The ski and binding instruction manual either did not exist, or I ignored them. The bindings had an on off switch, for a piston, which I never used for almost 18 years until I looked it up on the internet. I now turn it on sometimes! Read the instruction manual before you buy for the ski and the bindings if you can.

3. Learn how to wax and edge your own skis early, as you will probably do a better job and a more frequent wax. (eventually after making some mistakes)

4. My skis and bindings are quite heavy, and this can be a problem when you put them on your back and carry them with ski boots up a mountain before you ski. I would look for a lighter, smaller ski for this reason, which would make them easier to carry on a back pack. (obviously a snowboard would be easier, but I am too old to learn new games)

Not much of an issue for a 99% on piste skier, but over a period of time you might change what you want to do.


Thanks that's really interesting feedback. I haven't tried any off piste couloirs as yet but am keen to have a go, I've probably stuck to pistes a bit too much tbh. Good tip I really don't know anything about bindings. I was looking at getting the DPS Phantom treatment so I wouldn't have to worry about waxing, I've heard good things about it and sounds pretty convenient, although I'd still need to learn about edging my own skis. For off piste/touring I was thinking of in a few years getting a fatter lighter ski for this purpose tbh to use in Scotland around the Cairngorms and Perthshire, whereas the ones I'm looking for now are mostly just for Pistes in Europe.
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@menatarms, FWIW. I have personally found, that ski construction has the biggest effect on whether the ski will be too stiff for me.....and ski width/sidecut/design, is about how good the ski will be in different applications - You can have Damp and Playful skis in all widths ie. Choose the Width based on where you are going to ski; and choose the Construction that suits your weight/aggressiveness.


Last edited by Ski the Net with snowHeads on Tue 26-04-22 8:54; edited 1 time in total
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