Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

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Woodserson

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Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby Woodserson » Thu Feb 12, 2015 9:44 pm

How I got these skis:

After falling out of alpine and AT skiing due to injury, I started getting heavy into the XC skiing on the 205cm Fischer Country Crown/Wax (60-52-57). After a few years of that, I decided I wanted a little beefier ski for deeper snow touring and maybe some downhills. I seriously considered the E109 Wax, but I couldn't find it in North America. Apparently, Americans are afraid of Wax, and those skis don't sell. I was disappointed, but that's OK, I ended up on a pair of Madshus 210cm wood skis that are obviously Wax, and they are everything I ever wanted in a long straight touring ski, but that's another story. At the time, I did a little more thinking, and then I stumbled on a super deal for a pair of S Bound 78s in a 189cm, and I couldn't refuse. I had at the time some spare NNNBC Auto's that I bought for $4.99, and there was no way I could justify buying Magnums at that point.

For reference, I am 160lbs without gear, 6'2".

So away we went. I had some low-cut boots at first, and then found a nice fit in the Rossi X-10, almost too much for lowland flat country stuff, but it was comfy and priced right. As with most semi-positive grip patterns, I feel they always need a day or two on icy snowmobile trails to grind down the more positive aspects of the pattern and increase the glide.

The biggest obstacle I had with them was the NNN BC. I come from a strong Alpine background with all the jazz of heavy high ankled boots and locked in heels. Turning down hill was a bear for me. This is a failing on my part, not the ski or the NNN BC set up, (I'm not poking this NNNBC vs 3pin debate with a 10' ski! Not the point of the review!). Just recently I ended up getting the basic Voile 3 pin binding. (I got the cable version, but use them mostly without the cables).

The 3 pin binding was a revelation for me, as now it mimicked the downhill skiing I'm used to a little bit more.

Now for the review:

Gliding:

They glide well, but are not as effortless as the significantly lighter Fischer Country's, as this is a real ski with a beefy base and metal edges, and all that jazz. They do, however, move along quite nicely, and they track straight with very little squirrel action, if any at all. I loved blazing up and down trails. I had them on roads, off roads, in the woods, on narrow double-fall line trails, and they shined everywhere, predicable performance with no big surprises either in the positive or negative sense. Not a lot of glide in the untracked stuff, but if it's a little packed you get nice glide going that's not astonishing but it's not dragging either. I would always love more glide, but then I would be reviewing a wax ski.

Gripping:

They have good grip with good technique. On the flats, no problem or excessive drag after the two days of snowmobile trail sand-down. I bought skins for more strenuous uphills, and I need to use them. I do prefer a gliding ski more than a gripping ski, so this is a personal choice, I am a little light weight for the recommended length.

Turning:

The 78 is quite nimble underfoot with great turn initiation and a crisp snap out of the turn that is very skier controlled. Basically, the straighter dimensions of this ski allow for a flexible turn carving around a corner with good grip on the tail if you want it, but none of the hookiness. I really like that with a free heel! I was linking paramarking turns down a moderate slope and they felt solid with a nice short turn. Big smiles, my first linked turns in years! Once the speed starts to come up, the lightness of the ski begins to make it's appearance for me, and they get knocked around in crud, but if I stay on them, I can power through. Again, this is probably in reference to my Alpine skiing, but in reference to the XC Fischer Country ski, they are rock solid.

In deep powder, downhill, then kick/glide:

Downhill powder, well, get going fast, point, commit, and own it. They are not wide in the shovel when the going gets super deep, there's no getting around this.

For Gliding, the shovels flex up and float, but overall the ski is not super soft, so there's positive and negatives with this: First, when kick and gliding, the tip rises right up and pokes out through the snow, but the rest of the ski doesn't go all bounce-snap--- for those that know what it's like to bound through the snow on a ski with a long, round flex, it's like being on a trampoline a bit-- a good rhythm and away you go! The S Bound 78 doesn't do this as much, since it's stiffer underneath and in the tail, so a little more slogging. However, this means that on downhills, it won't go all soft on you, and I believe this adds to the controllability and snappiness in small radius turns. A tradeoff.

Overall, a great ski. I like them for touring, they are light on the backpack, and they do everything I want for what they are. I skied one day on a pair of Atomic Rainiers and the 78 IMO blows them out of the water. I am really interested in trying the 88 and the 98, however.

ON a side note, I am a Fischer Man. I really like their downhill skis, and I like their construction, and they have a long heritage in nordic skiing. I make no apologies or excuses, nor do I have reasons. I just have a little love affair with Fischer, and that's that.

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby MikeK » Thu Feb 12, 2015 9:52 pm

Woodserson wrote:ON a side note, I am a Fischer Man. I really like their downhill skis, and I like their construction, and they have a long heritage in nordic skiing. I make no apologies or excuses, nor do I have reasons. I just have a little love affair with Fischer, and that's that.


Spoken like a true Alpinist ;)

Thanks for the review. Have you ever tried to ski them down hill on packed snow?

PS Get a 98 - you will LOVE it! It sounds a lot like this ski but turns like a go kart.

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CIMA

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby CIMA » Thu Feb 12, 2015 10:10 pm

Woodserson wrote:I am a Fischer Man.

Me too!
I had the Snowbound Crown, prior model of 78, but I gave it to a friend of mine, because it was half-edged.
The 78 seems very good on packed snow.
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Woodserson

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby Woodserson » Thu Feb 12, 2015 11:03 pm

MikeK wrote:Spoken like a true Alpinist ;)

Thanks for the review. Have you ever tried to ski them down hill on packed snow?

PS Get a 98 - you will LOVE it! It sounds a lot like this ski but turns like a go kart.


I have and they behave very nicely, with nice turns. I bootpacked up Cannon and Bretton Woods after the lifts stopped turning for the season, so conditions were packed corn. That's where I try to learn my tele turns and get adequate results. Better with the 3pin, but again, my Alpinist Deficiencies. I have not tried them on boilerplate. I've also skied down moderate slopes with packed powder from previous skiers, and they behaved spot on... (the Atomic Rainiers on the other hand)...

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby MikeK » Thu Feb 12, 2015 11:28 pm

I'm an Alpinist convert myself (it's also an inside Fischer joke due to them being an Austrian company)...

Hmm... so maybe I will start resort skiing again next year... Despite CIMAs convincing statements, I'd go with pins as well (probably risers too to keep the wings off the snow) because I suck at skiing these type of skis on consolidated snow... but I'm glad to know they have promise. I DO NOT like the 98s on hard snow BTW - totally skiable, they just feel nervous as hell.

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Woodserson

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby Woodserson » Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:08 am

If you ever come to NH, look me up and you can try my 78's.

Every ski with no heel attachment feel nervous as hell to me, so maybe my review is quite tainted.

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby MikeK » Fri Feb 13, 2015 10:13 am

Maybe nervous is a bad word. Yes, all these light skis with light boots bounce around on rutted up snow, but some just like to go straight. I should have said darty or squirelly, because anytime you catch an edge they want to GO!

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Woodserson

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby Woodserson » Fri Feb 13, 2015 10:27 am

MikeK wrote:Maybe nervous is a bad word. Yes, all these light skis with light boots bounce around on rutted up snow, but some just like to go straight. I should have said darty or squirelly, because anytime you catch an edge they want to GO!


Oh right, that makes sense. No problems there. I may have tuned down the tips and tails, but I can't remember.

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby MikeK » Fri Feb 13, 2015 10:30 am

I think that would not be a bad idea on the 98s... haven't tried it yet, still skiing the factory edges.

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Re: Long winded Fischer S Bound 78

Postby lilcliffy » Sat Feb 14, 2015 5:34 pm

Great review man.

What are your thoughts on camber? Do you think the S-78 is anywhere near as cambered as the double-cambered Fischer Country?
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