Skis For Sale

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Fischer ski details
Madshus ski details
Salomon ski details
Ski Request form

The 50K at the 2011 Oslo World Championships was the last race of the event, run on the final Sunday. Maybe more important than being a World Championship event, it was the Holmenkollen 50K. In any event, the combination of being the Holmenkollen and a World Championship event, on a (rare) sunny Sunday in March made it, perhaps, the biggest ski race of all time. The official estimate was 110,000 spectators according to the Oslo police.

Noah Hoffman found himself skiing in second place during the second of six laps. Afterward he told me he thought he had some of the best skis in the race. This was a big satisfaction for me, since I had picked those skis (strong 118 for violet conditions) from Madshus inventory earlier in the week, and ground them (L2-0S) on a Tazzari machine at a shop in Oslo. It’s not often you get to take a pair of skis from the rack to the front end of the biggest race in the world in one week.

What goes into getting it right at that level, aside from some good luck? The same factors we focus on anytime we’re picking skis; good absolute quality, and the right characteristics for the conditions.[/column]

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Fischer Speedmax – $795
Madshus REDline – $775
Salomon S-Lab Carbon – $775
Grind on new ski – $50

Rottefella Xcelerator – $110
Rottefella SSR – $130
Rottefella R3 – $92.00
Salomon Pilot Carbon RS or RS2 – $110
Salomon Propulse – $110
No installation charge on new skis

Grind – $80
Heatbox (2-stage) – $30
Heatbox & Race Hardening – $45

Fleet Evaluation
Please Call (we won’t charge you if we think we can sell you something)

Please contact us at (802)536-4719[/column][end_columns]

Absolute quality is the first order of business in ski picking. While it sometimes seems that great skis are magic, they’re not. The trick is learning what combination of attributes adds up to great quality, while still allowing room for conditions-specific characteristics. A great pair of skis is usually really good in a broad range of conditions, but if you’ve got one pair of skis that is just plain better than everything else in all conditions, it’s a good bet that everything else just isn’t as good.

Understanding Quality
So, we accept that quality is not the same as magic. I’d be lying if I said I was never frustrated or mystified by which skis turn out to be great. Understanding quality is an exercise in understanding materials and design, and keeping an open mind. Quality generally isn’t a question of matching flex numbers or precision of fit. It’s a balance in the distribution of strength and tension in the ski, especially when it expresses your skiing energy on the snow. Understanding quality is brand specific and model specific, and it depends on knowing what contribution each element of the ski is expected to make, and how it all fits together.

I mentioned an open mind above. One of the most dangerous tendencies is to start thinking you’ve got it all figured out. I know that I have pronounced some great skis to be “unskiable” in the past, simply because I didn’t understand their design, and they didn’t fit my preconceived notion of how skis work. There’s always more to learn because the ski companies continue to push the process of design forward.

Flex characteristics are what determine a ski’s suitability for a certain range of conditions. This is where we look at bridge length and camber action; the load and pressure distribution of the gliding surfaces, and tension carried by the materials under load. Different conditions present different frictional challenges, and the characteristics of the ski need to address those challenges specifically.

Understanding Characteristics
Like quality, characteristics are specific to brand and model. Different materials respond to similar levels of load and tension differently, and what’s optimal for one brand and model of ski may be quite wrong for another. There are certain universal truths – like, wet conditions require focused pressure distribution – but picking skis is a matter of levels and degrees, and that is where things get specific. Great “green” skis from one company might be low resting camber with a stiff finish, while another company might have better “green” skis from a model that has a higher resting camber and a softer finish. You need to know the materials.