Do we really need all that sidecut for powder skiing?

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lilcliffy
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Do we really need all that sidecut for powder skiing?

Postby lilcliffy » Tue Nov 14, 2017 7:36 pm

Why is it the default to add parabolic shape to EVERY ski- even BC skis supposedly designed for deep powder snow?

I find myself continuously underwhelmed by these "do-it-all" designs that just simply are not wide enough underfoot, and are too cambered and stiff (great for on-piste), to effectively perform in deep soft snow...

Remember the Volant Spatula?
https://www.evo.com/what-is-so-special- ... e-spatulas

As Asnes launches the new Ingstad- with its Nordic-world-shattering rockered tips- intended for backcountry snow- why is it so damn narrow at the waist?
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

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connyro
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Re: Do we really need all that sidecut for powder skiing?

Postby connyro » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:31 pm

I'm with you LC. I've never been a big fan of lots of sidecut, especially for touring skis. Sidecut is great for downhilling on groomed snow, but beyond that, if you can ski with control and balance, lots of sidecut is not needed and in fact can become a hindrance.

Nick BC
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Re: Do we really need all that sidecut for powder skiing?

Postby Nick BC » Wed Nov 15, 2017 1:06 am

I agree. For powder and most back country snow my Vector BC's perform flawlessly. 94 at the waist, 118? at the tip.

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LoveJohnny
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Re: Do we really need all that sidecut for powder skiing?

Postby LoveJohnny » Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:08 am

Why? I think it's just because it's what people want. It's the demand that drives the market, not the offer. If the kids don't like it, then there are no sales.

10 or 12 years ago, the straight, no sidecut, 150mm wide pontoons were the norm. That was what people wanted, because that's what you could see in all those crappy Black Diamond sponsored heli-ski movies. But I think the kids realized that dropping 500$ on a ski you can really enjoy one or two times a year was not the best investment. We don't see these straight pontoons anymore, I really wonder where they are now... Most powder skis on the market now have radius in the 18-23m... I think people are now expecting that if they spend 500$ on a ski, it will do it all: Piste, race, powder and freestyle all at the same time. If this is what people want, then the offer must meet the demand. The same applies for XC BC skis too...

Also, probably more important, I realize how lucky we are to ski every day when we want in our backyards. The average skier is skiing like what, 30-40 times a year? Chances are he will ski on week-ends, on leftover crud or uncertain conditions. Snowstorms tend to take their week-ends off too. He will probably find itself on the wrong side of the mountain too, because he did not observe winds and weather in that area for the last 20 years. My point is that most people rarely ski fresh power every day like we do. If they get 2-3 mornings of a few inches of powder, they are happy. Even if they dream of powder and like to brag about it, they actually do very little. So spending 500$ on an everyday ski, plus another 500$ on a dedicated, straight, fat or skinny powder ski doesn't make much sense. And manufacturers know about that... The culture of having one tool for each job is slowly dying... It's a MasterCraft Multi-Tools era...

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/...\ Peace, Love, Telemark and Tofu /...\
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Cannatonic
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Re: Do we really need all that sidecut for powder skiing?

Postby Cannatonic » Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:47 am

I agree, I never got on board the "shaped" ski revolution, but at 22cm I don't mind the Ingstad sidecut, that is the deepest of any of my skis and the acceptable limit. I'm not in bottomless powder often though.

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lilcliffy
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Location: Stanley, New Brunswick, Canada

Re: Do we really need all that sidecut for powder skiing?

Postby lilcliffy » Wed Nov 15, 2017 12:03 pm

I don't have a problem with 22mm of sidecut on a BC-XCD ski- it is the wasp waist that concerns me...

That being said- as long as the overall longitudinal flex of the ski is stable in deep snow- it works.

My 210cm Combat Natos are very stable in deep snow, due to the full-length stability of the ski.

It's the presence of a loose and very soft tip that is really the primary cause of the instability of these midwidth XCD skis...

The Nordic rocker should allow one to retain a more stable, integrated tip.

Skis like the Eon and the E109 fail in deep soft snow, at least as much for their ultra-soft tips, as they do for their waspy waists...

And you fellas are also right about the value of a versatile ski- I get it.

I just tend to be suspicious about claims of "do-it-all" design and performance.
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry


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