Rossignol Experience 84 AI initial impressions

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Rossignol Experience 84 AI initial impressions

Post by MSU Alum » Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:07 am

Bottom line: Great frontside ski.
Good carver. It has a LOT of sidecut, but carves turns of varying radii effortlessly and skids without catching. An easy to ski frontside carver really designed for intermediate alpine skiers, so on tele gear, it's easy to drive.

More details:
I’m 5’8”, 155 pounds. Skiing in the Wasatch
160cm length has about an 82mm waist. Advertised at an 11.5m turn radius at this length.
Crispi Evo, 26.5 mounted boot center over recommended point with Meidjo 2.1, single spring on 5.

It's been a slow start to the year, with only one run open at PCMR and one at The Canyons. The conditions are mostly hardpack on man made snow with some icy sections (nothing you can read a newspaper through, though, so not East coast ice).

These were specifically chosen to follow on as a frontside carver to complement my last pair of Atomic Vantage 85 CTI's in a 165cm that have been my go-to for bump skiing - since that ski is finally sold out everywhere.

The two skis are similar, in the way they ski on groomers, with the Rossis taking the nod in pure carving and at least comparable in edge hold (my Atomics are tuned to 3 degrees side bevel Vs. the stock 1 degree on the Rossis - I may up that bevel on the Rossis as well). The Atomics have a turn radius of 16m at 165cm and the Rossis have a radius of 11.5m at 160cm. It's functionally noticeable and you can see the sidecut difference at a glance. The tails on the Rossis are slighlty wider than on the Atomics (114mm Vs 107mm) with the tips about the same. Weight is 1400 grams per ski.
The tape indicates the relative position of the running surface.
20191102_073143.jpg
Correction: I said "running surface" but it's actually the estimated length of the edge, engaged in a turn, which is much more useful for my application. My son's 4FRNT Hojis (a reverse camber design) are 187cm, but the running surface is literally the length of his boot! Given the variations in design now, I don't really look too hard at running surface length.

The amount of tail rise is plenty for skiing switch without worrying about the tail catching.
20191102_073303.jpg
The nice thing about the increase in sidecut is that, in a pure carve the Rossis can create the same tight turn as the Atomics with less angle on the ski. It is easier on my 67 year old lower back muscles. I went into some off piste mank on the side of the trail and 4" was not a problem. I'm guessing that they'll be pretty similar to the Atomics in that regard. I haven't had the opportunity to ski bumps with them. Initially, I was skeptical that they would be good in that application because of their radical sidecut and slightly increased tail width, but you can vary the turn easily and skid them at will, and I stay out of the troughs, so I'm looking forward to getting them in the bumps.

If I were to use these as more of an all round ski, at my ht/wt I'd probably be using the 176cm version, but even that carves a tighter turn than my 165cm Atomics. I think these will work out very well.

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Re: Rossignol Experience 84 AI initial impressions

Post by Woodserson » Sun Dec 01, 2019 8:00 pm

Thanks for this great write up on another killer intermediate ski that rocks frontside for tele skiers!

I really like the tape idea, it gives a good visual, I'm going to borrow that for future reviews. There really is something joyful to mid-80 waisted skis with tight radius numbers, nothing but fun, especially if the tail clears the end of the turn. Catching tails can be interesting, to say the least. I'm going to keep an eye out for this ski going forward. Let me know what you think about the bumps... would you say they flex evenly with the Atomics or are softer/firmer?

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Re: Rossignol Experience 84 AI initial impressions

Post by MSU Alum » Mon Dec 02, 2019 10:03 am

Right now my impression is that they flex in a very similar fashion to my Vantage 85 CTI's.

Edit: Actually, they have a similar even flex pattern but slightly stiffer overall. I think the CTI's are a little stiffer than the Vantage 85 but really mostly torsionally.
I hit some baby bumps yesterday on my Vantage's with Freedom bindings (and was reminded yet again why I like them so much).

I took the EXP 84's out and got in some skiing in some newly forming bumps this morning.

I'm finding double springs on "2" on the Meidjos is pretty close to what I'm used to on Freedoms now that I have a few days on the boots and bindings.
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The moguls are fairly soft - which I didn't expect these to do very well in. I figured they'd be fine in set up bumps, but in and out of variable conditions, I expected them to hang up a bit more that the Atomics, being so short and inclined to carve (henceforth known as "carvy").

It took about 3 runs to get back into the game + breaking the code on a new ski.

I'd been carving on groomers with these, so it took the full 3 runs to readjust. On the first run, since these are so carvy, the outside ski was turning into the back ski so that in a quick edge change bringing the back ski forward it would ride up over the front....not fun. Also, in these variable conditions if you get any pressure against the back of either boot, they'll stop skidding!

By the third run though, I'd resolved that and the skis worked really well. They are a little more precise than the Atomics in responding to differences in edging, but nothing wierd. I'm having my LAST pair of Atomics mounted up and will try them with the Meidjos this week.

I ended up with 6 bump runs and was very comfortable on the last 3.

If your technique is to stay more in the troughs, bump skiing, these would not be a good choice as they just have too much sidecut for that application.

I found a run that was tracked up 2 day old powder, about 8" deep and once again, these things just turned. No deflection problems even at this absurdly short length. I couldn't charge like I was on a pair of 185 JJ's for sure, but they still did well....once again, very much inclined to tight turns.

I'm probably going to be using the Atomics for the most part for frontside skiing on non-powder days, but these might be a very nice replacement for them, since they aren't made any more. I got the 160's but if I were to replace my 165 Atomics, I'd have been better off with the 168's I think.

One thing, these are a pleasure to carve on. Using the Atomics, I get going pretty fast, unless I throw in a skidded turn every once in a while. With these, as long as traffic isn't a problem, I can carve right across the hill and use that to control speed. So, the EXP 84's will definitely be my "carving day" ski.

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