Skis too long?

This is the World Famous TelemarkTalk / TelemarkTips Forum, by far the most dynamic telemark and backcountry skiing discussion board on the world wide web. We have fun here, come on in and be a part of it.
ivymike

Rank: XCD Enthusiast
XCD Enthusiast
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2018 12:17 am

Skis too long?

Postby ivymike » Mon Jan 08, 2018 11:28 am

Hey everyone,

I've skied downhill for 20 years, but I decided to pick up XC skiing after recently moving to Oregon. I picked up some of the Asnes surplus skis on the cheap as my first pair. Unfortunately, I think they're too long for me.

I'm 5'10 and between 140-150lbs, and I got the 200cm. This was the smallest size available, and they were so inexpensive I won't be really bummed if they don't work.

My question is, will they function at all for learning the basics? What am I giving up with this length, and is there a way to compensate for the length and still enjoy them?\

Thanks!

littlevikingca

Rank: XCD Enthusiast
XCD Enthusiast
Posts: 10
Joined: Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:25 pm
Location: Thunder Bay, ON

Re: Skis too long?

Postby littlevikingca » Mon Jan 08, 2018 12:52 pm

Hi,

I expect that they will be fine. I'm about an inch taller than you. In the late '70s (when I weighed about what you weigh ) the initial "rough" sizing was from the ground to the "break" at one's wrist with your arm extended vertically. If one was a real serious enthusiast this was followed by the "paper test" on a smooth floor. I started on 215cm (probably on sale :D ) light touring Madshus Birkebeiners, then 210cm Europa 99's, now 210cm Madshus Pellestovas (with about 30 lbs addition weight). I generally ski with a pack (10 to 20 lbs) and I cannot recall ever experiencing a radical change in the "feel" of the ski if I wasn't carrying the additional weight (say at the groomed trails). Perhaps I'm not as sensitive to nuances..


I guess the point is don't worry too much -mount the bindings and enjoy them- From what I read on this site, those skis don't have as stiff a camber as the traditional nordic touring skis.

Also, if you ski with a pack the additional floatation off the hard packed trails will an asset (based on my experience with more downhill specific Telemark skis (another story).

Dave

Cannatonic

Rank: XCD Guide
XCD Guide
Posts: 543
Joined: Thu Nov 27, 2014 10:07 pm

Re: Skis too long?

Postby Cannatonic » Mon Jan 08, 2018 1:56 pm

If I'm not mistaken these are straight-ahead, cross-country type skis and therefore 200cm should be perfect for your size and weight.

teleclub

Rank: XCD Pinhead
XCD Pinhead
Posts: 100
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 4:49 pm
Location: Wasatch

Re: Skis too long?

Postby teleclub » Mon Jan 08, 2018 2:53 pm

Even if you eventfully prefer shorter skis, it's good to at least experiment with the longest skis when you're learning XC kick glide (the basics as you say), especially on tracks or where you can go fast. If by basics you mean breaking trail in deep soft snow, that's a different kind of thing, and depending on what the skis are like they could be good for that too. If by basics you mean XCD, cross-country-downhill turning, that's a different thing again, and those skis are less likely to be easy for that, even though many of us learned XCD on skis that long and longer. Even that can work, but tell us more about what you want to learn.

The key to learning classic diagonal stride is to feel that kick and glide. Many people who try to learn never get past shuffling and never feel the glide speed you get with properly long fast XC skis. Assuming it's a classic double camber ski, the key will be timing that kick so you engage the wax pocket effectively but otherwise you glide, glide, glide. This is really fun and great exercise when you get the feel.

You can try the piece of paper under the ski test to find out if your weight is sufficient for the skis. Most racers your weight would be on skis at least that long so I think they're likely to be fine. I'm 5'11" and when I was racing and 150-160 lbs I used 215 skis and that was pretty standard. (I know this is not about racing or racing skis--I'm only referring to racing because that's where you find fast kick-glide technique used fully.)

The paper test might be better explained already somewhere on the site, but it's how I used to test out skis, especially second hand buys. Something like this: stand on both skis equally and someone should be able to slip a piece of paper under the skis about where your feet stand on them. It should slide it pretty freely and be able to move around under there. Then put all your weight on one ski only and that piece of paper should be pinned under the ski so it can't move. That's how you know your weight can engage the wax pocket (one side at a time) but that you can glide on both skis without the wax (or scales) touching.

connyro

Rank: XCD Guide
XCD Guide
Posts: 773
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2015 12:46 pm

Re: Skis too long?

Postby connyro » Mon Jan 08, 2018 3:55 pm

I ski those skis, but the 210 cm ones. The main concern with these skis IMO is the camber and not the length. I'm at 5'10" 180 lbs and I have trouble compressing the camber fully. It's not a problem in fresh deep snow, but I really notice the camber on firmer packed trails and climbs. In my situation, I just extend my kick wax more towards the tips of the skis to make up for lack of camber compression/kick. I know based on conversation at this site that there's variability from one pair of those skis to the next: some have soft cambered 210s and some have a stiff camber and super stiff tips like mine. Each pair is a new adventure!

User avatar
lilcliffy

Rank: XCD KNIGHT
XCD KNIGHT
Posts: 1730
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2015 7:20 pm
Location: Stanley, New Brunswick, Canada

Re: Skis too long?

Postby lilcliffy » Mon Jan 08, 2018 5:15 pm

connyro wrote:I know based on conversation at this site that there's variability from one pair of those skis to the next: some have soft cambered 210s and some have a stiff camber and super stiff tips like mine. Each pair is a new adventure!

By all reports there is ALOT of variability between pairs- Connyro and I are about the same weight and height (me- 5'10"; 185lbs)- my 210cms sound perhaps a bit softer than his- the camber and flex is about right for my weight.

IvyMike-
Have you tried these skis out yet?

The paper test described can be done before you even mount a binding on them.

For a true double-cambered ski to offer effective XC performance, there must be an effective wax/traction pocket- in other words you should have to fully-weight the ski to fully compress the camber underfoot.

NOW- that being said- a double-cambered ski- designed for a groomed track- is a different tool than a double-cambered ski designed for fresh, soft backcountry snow.

For example- even my relaxed track touring skis (Atomic Moition) are waaaay to stiff and cambered to be of any real use off-track.

SO- if you find it difficult to effectively engage the wax pocket of these skis on fresh snow, they may well be too long and/or too stiff for your weight (just like Connyro describes above).

HOWEVER- there seems to be so much variability between skis that you can probably not be guaranteed that a shorter USGI would be better (i.e. it could be even stiffer than what you have).

Traditionally, variability in wooden double-cambered skis was expected, and the ski was chosen to suit the individual skier, standing on the skis in the shop.
The pursuit of XCD balance: cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry

teleclub

Rank: XCD Pinhead
XCD Pinhead
Posts: 100
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2016 4:49 pm
Location: Wasatch

Re: Skis too long?

Postby teleclub » Mon Jan 08, 2018 5:39 pm

I don't know this ski, but to add to what Lilcliffy says, the ~210 model of a track-ish XC ski always was(is still?) considerably stiffer than the ~200 model.

Almost doesn't matter though since it sounds like ivyMike has the skis in possession so he can do the paper test and answer this pretty easily.

ivyMike, you asked about how to compensate for a too-stiff ski so note Connyro's description of extending the zone you apply kick wax to. That works.

Another area of variability besides the skis and the snow is your technique. As you learn kick-glide you get better at timing your kick so you don't need the ski to be as easy-gripping. As I learned kick/glide technique I found I liked stiffer skis with deeper wax pockets that had more glide because my kick technique was better.

Everything I'm saying has to do with glide on firm snow where you want to glide efficiently. Scooting(level) through deeper softer fresher snow is different and more forgiving of ski flex variation.

User avatar
t-$

Rank: XCD Pinhead
XCD Pinhead
Posts: 237
Joined: Sat Dec 02, 2017 8:29 am

Re: Skis too long?

Postby t-$ » Mon Jan 08, 2018 9:05 pm

hey,

i'm betting the 200 in that ski will be just fine for you. i am lighter than you by a little bit, and they work great for me. so i am thinking they will be probably better performing for your little extra weight, actually. in shallow powder and choppy trails i have found them to be so much better than other long skis. nice and smooth.

hope they work for you. report back with your experience!!

User avatar
satsuma

Rank: XCD Pinhead
XCD Pinhead
Posts: 136
Joined: Sat May 03, 2014 10:31 pm
Location: Walla Walla, WA

Re: Skis too long?

Postby satsuma » Wed Jan 10, 2018 7:21 pm

I don't know where you are, but it's easier to learn good xc striding technique in groomed tracks, if you have any nearby. For that, you would need narrower skis. If you don't want to buy, you may want to rent a few times.


Return to “Telemark Talk Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Google [Bot] and 7 guests