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First set of SL skis; help will be much welcomed!

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Hi guys,

this is my first post here, and I could use some of your advice.
I rented a pair of Stockli Laser SL 165cm when I was in Zell Am See last time, and I admit that it helped me a lot to work towards my quick turning because of that rebound effect (first time on SL skis). I realised that if you do it right, these type of skis would catapult you instantly to the next turn. I love that feeling and I think I should invest in a set of SL skis and take it from there.

I have noticed that Stockli (and Fischer) has an SC series ski as well. Fischer's SL range is FIS rated. After a lot of reading, it seems that FIS is stiff, and hard work.

I am not an expert, working through my tight turns, focusing on technique, I like a bit of a challenge and looking to improve further of course.

Before you ask me, I am 185cm tall, athletic build and 110kg. I think I should stick to the 165cm for a playful ski probably, but I don't know if my weight could take any stiffness no problem, so I could look into the FIS as well.

I hope you are all doing well these days and that we should be able to be up on the mountains soon...

Thanks in advance Very Happy
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
doberman wrote:
I realised that if you do it wrong, these type of skis would catapult you instantly to the next turn.

FIFY.
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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?
Doberman, I too enjoy nice SL skis, even if it could be quite a workout to ski them for a week in a big resort. I would recommend SC type of skis in Fischer and Stockli terms, which are slightly detuned version slalom skis. They will be more forgiving than full blown FIS version and more suitable for full day of skiing. Some companies make them also in 170 size, might be better for you frame
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Surely you should be looking at Nordica Doberman SL WC's or the Doberman Spitfire's?
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Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Pretty sure Stockli SL come in FIS and regular versions. Been having a great time on the non FIS 165 last few years.
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Head Supershape Magnum’s were my choice and I didn’t regret it. Tight turn radius with plenty of kick.
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Supershape is a great line of skis: I really liked Titans and was going recommend them, but they do have a different feel than traditional SL skis OP was talking about. But Supershape are probably a better choice as a "week long vacation" ski with SL bias
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
So I should not even consider FIS stiffness, regardless how much I weight, correct?

I did like the Stockli Laser SL, I admit (I used them for a whole week). Is the SC in general a softer version with a more forgiving behaviour?

Spyderjon, I did have a look at the Nordicas, they have an SLR and an SLC version; I suppose they are the equivalent of the SL and SC, correct?

Thanks for the advise guys!
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Doberman, I think spiderjon was mostly referencing your handle/screen name ....but Nordica are great skis in their own right. I would guess if you rented Stockli they were probably not FIS version. Normally FIS skis come with the plate, not integrated binding as would be used for rentals. So if you like SL buy them, but probably de-tuned version would be more suitable for day long skiing....Or as suggested something along lines of Magnum or other Supershapes. They are burly enough to handle your power
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I had to check these Nordicas, anyway! Laughing

The set I had was not the FIS version, you are right.
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To answer your question about Nordica: SLC are softer version of SLR otherwise similar, but neither of them are pure racing skis. I had to check out Stockli since we dont have many of them this side of the pond. SL and SC simply very diffent skis with different sidecuts. SL are probably close to pure slalom skis, where SC closer to Supershape Magnum, piste carving skis.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
alex_sauvage wrote:
To answer your question about Nordica: SLC are softer version of SLR otherwise similar, but neither of them are pure racing skis. I had to check out Stockli since we dont have many of them this side of the pond. SL and SC simply very diffent skis with different sidecuts. SL are probably close to pure slalom skis, where SC closer to Supershape Magnum, piste carving skis.


You are right, just checked the specs myself!
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Get the maths right and you can pick whichever colour/brand you like, such minimal differences once the skis are in action
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I'm wondering if you should hire a stiffer SL ski and see how you get on with them before making your final choice. Some people do prefer them, I have a pair of Dobermann WCs and despite being 35kg lighter than you find that they are great as an all day ski but you do need to drive them. My other half is 50kg and she skis all day on full on ex racer SL skis with no probs. However, if you load them incorrectly they will rebound you very aggresively and you need to be confident in your technique.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
As @Scarpa says, treat them right and they will be great fun, get it wrong and they buck.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I think if you enjoyed Stockli SL (and managed to handle them somewhat) you may find their SC / SX models a bit tame in comparison.
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essex wrote:
I think if you enjoyed Stockli SL (and managed to handle them somewhat) you may find their SC / SX models a bit tame in comparison.


The Stockli SL were very good yes!
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Scarpa wrote:
I'm wondering if you should hire a stiffer SL ski and see how you get on with them before making your final choice. Some people do prefer them, I have a pair of Dobermann WCs and despite being 35kg lighter than you find that they are great as an all day ski but you do need to drive them. My other half is 50kg and she skis all day on full on ex racer SL skis with no probs. However, if you load them incorrectly they will rebound you very aggresively and you need to be confident in your technique.


I think an even stiffer SL would be a FIS version, not sure you could hire them?
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You can hire them, but it won't be many shops. About 10 years since I bought my very nearly unused Stockli FIS SL from the rental/test fleet at Central Sport Wengen (Helps to be on good terms with the shop manager!). They've now been retired, as barely any base and edge left. Get in touch with Stockli, they may know which shops offer them.

Alternatively, get in touch with @Swiss Tim of Kneissl UK. I replaced my Stockli with Kneissl White stars (A step up even from the rock solid Stockli FIS SL), but Red stars are superb and comparable. Looks like he might have stock again... who knows he'll bring test samples to the autumn ski tests Wink
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@doberman, Until a few seasons ago, Stockli's SLs were (effectively) FIS (I think) - I think they now have a slightly not FIS SL for Joe Public but FIS versions are reasonably available. But I woulnd't take my word for it Happy
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under a new name wrote:
@doberman, Until a few seasons ago, Stockli's SLs were (effectively) FIS (I think) - I think they now have a slightly not FIS SL for Joe Public but FIS versions are reasonably available. But I woulnd't take my word for it Happy


They do have SL and SL FIS now, you are correct. It's the standard SL I rented and used all week in February, but ski resorts closed the day I was going back (15/3) so I never had the chance to continue my search and try at least a FIS version for the shake of it...
Let's hope we are all ok and next season finds us all healthy with what is going on right now! Sad
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I'm 6ft 7 and 105kg so a pretty similar build to you. Can't comment on our ability comparatively but if it helps, I tried various different slalom skis whilst I was in Canada in the winter and for me, I found Head to be consistently good. World Cup Rebel range this is.

I found the FIS SL ski the "World Cup Rebel i.SL" a bit much for me. The "World Cup Rebel i.SLR" though was utterly fantastic. I had so much fun, it seemed to be a similar spec to that of the i.SL but a bit less lethal. And also cheaper.

They do the i.GSR as well - I actually own some of these which I bought second hand - which are also brilliant fun but of the long turn variety.

All the Heads I tried were among my favourite that I tried so since we're similar size people I'd not discount that range.
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Can’t help you with different brands because I’ve only skied one pair of FIS SLs (Salomon) but I had a couple of days in a pair this season and bloody loved them. Loads of fun and totally useable for recreational skiing on piste. The smoothness, grip and precision are really rewarding. Bit more of a handful off piste. Of course they really work if you are the kind of skier that wants to be carving nearly all the time. If not there are probably better choices
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Oh and I’m 75kg and 49
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@dp,
The ISL RD are the dangerous ones. ISL are only just challenging wink
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It seems the only way to find out is to try a pair and take it from there; thanks for all your time and feedback!
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
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@musher, I'm not sure whether it was the ISL or the ISL RD. I presume the RD is the actual race model for people who actually race?

The ISL I had was a great ski no doubt. I just found that it needed 100% focus. The SLR could be driven hard with absolute focus, but if I was mid turn, an oh look a pigeon moment didn't have to be the precursor to a mach 3 wipe out.
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Atomic redster s9 Great ski. Easy to ski but responds when you push it.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
In my mind things are pretty simple. If you need to ask if FIS WC ski is right ski for you, then answer is simple... no it's not for you.
Alpine skiing is the only one of sports, which I do, that better equipment actually doesn't mean better result if you are not capable of using it. It actually gives worse experience then lower end equipment. And if you write "am not an expert, working through my tight turns, focusing on technique, I like a bit of a challenge and looking to improve further of course", then believe me, you won't be skiing with proper race ski, but fighting it trying to get one decent turn here and there, and I don't think that's point of skiing. But on the end, it's up to you to decide.
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@doberman, where are you based? If you're in the UK you could do a lot worse than (assuming we're not all still locked up at home) getting along to your nearest Oktobertest.
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@primoz, agreed. Although the problem with judging one's own ability is that often, the better you get, the more aware of how bad you are, you become.

Me after about 4 weeks skiing thought I was hot sh*t. Would have definitely bought SLs not knowing owt about them, in the belief my kit was holding me back.
Me after about 8 weeks skiing became acutely aware I wasn't very good. Stopped buying gear. Focussed on technique. Got lessons. Etc.
Me after about 12 weeks skiing became aware that I was becoming quite reasonable and my skis were limiting my ability to progress. Bought some Head i.GSRs.
Me now, after about 14-15 weeks, notices that my skiing has improved with better gear. However, there are still inadequacies which I now can't blame on the gear since I'm very aware that my skis are capable of it. Next stop will be more lessons.

Point being... it's possible that the OP is somewhere in the right area to be buying good skis, but doesn't know it yet. Self awareness is difficult in a sport where people tend to be taught at the beginning and go solo from there onwards.
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Mjit wrote:
@doberman, where are you based? If you're in the UK you could do a lot worse than (assuming we're not all still locked up at home) getting along to your nearest Oktobertest.

It's a 200 mile drive, but sounds like a good day out! Very Happy
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@dp, I totally agree with you to some extent. But one thing are store skis, while real race skis arecompletely other thing. I'm pretty sure anyone who can handle those skis properly knows this by himself. To handle real race skis properly, you need to have race technique and you need to ski at race speed. Once you comfortable ski at 80+km/h (ok for SL it's less, but still) you know this yourself without needing "confirmation" from someone on forum... or even ski instructor, as you ski better then any ski instructors.
So I agree completely when it comes to question one or the other rang of store skis, but when it comes to real race skis, I still stand with this, that you know perfectly well yourself if you can handle them or not.
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in the alpine shops there are plenty of skis marketed as "World Cup" but they are obviously not. Nevertheless they are quite hard work, will likely have a heavy plate and so on. Then quite some time a go the bloke in the shop ( in Tirol) suggested I try the Fischer RC4 "SC" version which he described as a detuned version of the punter WC skis. I have had a couple of these and still have some in my Keller, and have had similar models from other manufacturers like Blizzard and Atomic. All excellent. If you carve a nice turn you get a slight kick up the back bottom feeling.
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There's a few threads on this forum that you'll find helpful - like this one https://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?t=139396&highlight=skis+basi and others on choice of skis for L2 Basi courses. Last season I changed from Head Titans to Dynastar Speedzone14 (after the Titans delaminated) and the SpeedZones are substantially stiffer and quicker to turn. Like you I was looking for a ski to help me improve my short turns and I'm happy that I made the right choice. I'd love to try a full-on pair of SL skis but I think I'd find them tiring if I skied them for a week.
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@primoz, Using your definition, most people competing in FIS races are using "not race skis".
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There are full on WC skis the top podium stars use, generally tailored for an individual. But the same companies also provide a lot of skis for the lower levels of racers, often sponsored skiers and those coming up the ranks.
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@rjs I'm pretty sure most of skiers racing FIS races, would know how to ski. Of course it's not meant U7 will be running men GS ski, but I guess noone is talking about that. I have been, and still am, skiing enough of real WC race stock skis, so I can safely say that such skis are not meant for someone who is "not an expert, working through my tight turns, focusing on technique", or who doesn't know how good he is really skiing.
But as I also wrote, anyone buys what he or she wants. And if someone think he can ski with his mediocre ski knowledge real WC DH ski, I'm sure there will be enough people who would be happy to sell it... hell for right money I'm ready to do that, and contrary to low level ski in store, this one would be ski made for and skied by someone who's currently top 10 on WC Laughing
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@primoz, I had the chance to ski LBs SG race skis just to see what they were like but after discussion decided that a) my legs were not strong enough to hold them in a turn and b) the chance of me blowing a knee would be huge.
I know my limits and I usually ski 90+ days a year Laughing
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@Scarpa, gs are normally too much for most of people, sg are completely different class. So yeah... good move Very Happy
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