Own planks, yay or nay?

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Own planks, yay or nay?

Started by Marksman in Ski Hardware - 7 Replies

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Own planks, yay or nay?

Marksman posted Apr-2011

Evening all.

Not the most original of topics I'm afraid but if you'll indulge me I'm after some advice on whether to buy my own skis...

I'm really in two minds. I'd pretty much decided to stick with some boots and rent the planks. However having paid for crap rentals this year and seen what difference your own boots make I'm swaying towards buying some skis. I'm not usually an indecisive person, but in this case I don't feel qualified to make up my own mind

Pros:-
(a) No more getting used to different kit each time.
(b) No more waiting around in hire shops.
(c) Low mileage skis that can be well maintained.


Cons:-
(1) Initial expense
(2) Transport costs
(3) Service costs (or more kit / time if DIY)
(4) Stuck with same model for a while.
(5) Risk of loss or damage.

So a couple of questions:-

(i) How quickly do skis evolve? Would nice skis now mean heavily out of date skis in a couple of years time? (I intend to ski each year from now on, but probably only for a week a year.)

(ii) Do you find it a hassle traveling with your own skis?

(iii) Do you use a hard case to transport your skis or a soft bag? Any issues either way?

(iv) In other sports I've played in the past any bit of kit designed to do more that one thing is compromised before you even use it. So is there a ski that is comfortable for an early intermediate but that I won't feel the urge to upgrade as I improve? Is there a ski that is happy plodding along with the family in the morning but will come alive on an afternoon blast?

(v) What's the second hand value of skis like? Ex rentals sound like a risk , but a person upgrading to new kit sounds possible... What about end of season sales? Is this season's high end kit respun as next year's intermediate? (Seemed to get this impression on boots when I was looking.)

(vi) How can I educate myself as to the characteristics of different skis. (I'm ashamed to say that so far being a Star Wars nerd and a techie if a ski has "X-Wing" and "titanium" in it's name I don't care how it performs I just want them…) There has to be a more informed way to make a choice!



As ever any advice welcome.

Cheers,

Owen.

AllyG
reply to 'Own planks, yay or nay?'
posted Apr-2011

Hi Owen,

I don't own my own skis, but I have observed another negative about owning your own skis to add to the list.

Skiers never seem to be satisfied with owning just one pair of skis. It's as though buying the first pair opens the flood gates and they keep looking at ads, and in ski shops, until finally they can't resist the temptation and they buy another pair. Ski manufacturers are crafty, and each year they seem to 'improve' ski design and whatever the new development is, it becomes the next 'must have'. The skis I hired this year, for example, were last year's K2 True Luv's and on my return out of curiosity I looked them up and discovered that this year's model have 'rockers' (whatever those are).

So, I would guess that owning skis is like buying a computer - within a fairly short space of time you'll want a laptop as well, and then a new pc after about 2 years.

If you do buy a pair of skis I'd advise you to buy a double ski bag because it won't be long before you'll be wanting a second pair - for ski-ing in powder, in the park, or whatever the latest excuse is

Ally

Marksman
reply to 'Own planks, yay or nay?'
posted Apr-2011

Hi Ally.

Thanks for the reply. After your write up on boots I hold you personally responsible for my credit card bill. Now you're leading me into temptation to buy TWO sets of skis! That said some "fast" skis and some "going backwards" skis would be nice…

Hang-on, methinks you should come with a warning sticker attached.

Cheers,

Owen.

Pablo Escobar
reply to 'Own planks, yay or nay?'
posted Apr-2011

i)It depends, the marketing gimmicks evolve pretty quickly but over the past few years classic shaped skis haven't really changed, most of the development has been at the higher end of the performance bracket. I have a pair of piste skis from a few years ago and the ones released for next season are identical.

ii)No, I usually travel with 2-3 pairs and whilst it is an extra bag that can be a bit of a pain on trains as far as planes are concerned it's not really an issue.

iii)I use a soft case and usually throw some other bits and pieces in. I have a Dakine Concourse roller that can happily take 3 pairs or 2 pairs and a pair of boots.

iv)Kind of/kind of not. It really depends what your definition of plodding along and having a blast are. The best thing to do would be to test a variety of skis.

v)It depends what you buy... I've had a couple of pairs of second hand skis over the past few years and if you make a shrewd purchase then you can get your money back. I've also bought skis not much off full retail and taken a pretty heavy hit on them. I've got a couple of pairs sitting about that are worth more to have lying around than to deal with the hassle of selling.

vi)Demo!

Additional: I've gone from having 1 pair in 2008 to 6 pairs last year and I've thinned it down to 3 so be careful out there. Sometimes it's tough to resist buying
Edited 1 time. Last update at 04-Apr-2011

Andymol2
reply to 'Own planks, yay or nay?'
posted Apr-2011

I'd say yes. Far less hassle than the scrum of the hire shops and at least you know what you are getting in terms of the ski and it's condition.

Downside - cost & hassle of lugging your ski's around. If you drive to the ski resort then the cost is nil. Flight charges vary.
Hiring does let you try a variety of skis which is sensible the first few time you ski - as you get better you'll probably need different ski's and you will also get a better appreciation of the type of ski that suits you.

Do you need several sets? If the answere is that if you'd only stick with one set of hire skis for a week you can make the same case for owning 1 pair.
It may be nice to have some for different snow conditions but most people tend to ski on the prepared pistes.

You may want 2 or more pairs but that's not the same as needing them! As for Pablo having 6 pairs....sounds like he's a shopaholic!
Andy M
Edited 1 time. Last update at 04-Apr-2011

Trencher
reply to 'Own planks, yay or nay?'
posted Apr-2011

I think the multiple pairs of skis thing much depends on how much time you spend on the snow. It makes life more interesting to be able to change it up, and if you ski a lot, you're less likely to compromise on the best ski for the job.

My personal choice for a one ski quiver at the moment would be the Rossignol Avenger 82ti. I'm Looking to acquire a pair for next season.
because I'm so inclined .....

Ian Wickham
reply to 'Own planks, yay or nay?'
posted Apr-2011

I'm for taking my own planks ...... But the daft ski shops are missing a trick by charging more to hire than to transport your own, I have looked into it a couple of times and the hire shops have always been higher priced then what some budget airlines charge, a little 10% tweak from the ski shops could increase their income.

Tony_H
reply to 'Own planks, yay or nay?'
posted Apr-2011

AllyG wrote:Hi Owen,

I don't own my own skis, but I have observed another negative about owning your own skis to add to the list.

Skiers never seem to be satisfied with owning just one pair of skis. It's as though buying the first pair opens the flood gates and they keep looking at ads, and in ski shops, until finally they can't resist the temptation and they buy another pair. Ski manufacturers are crafty, and each year they seem to 'improve' ski design and whatever the new development is, it becomes the next 'must have'. The skis I hired this year, for example, were last year's K2 True Luv's and on my return out of curiosity I looked them up and discovered that this year's model have 'rockers' (whatever those are).

So, I would guess that owning skis is like buying a computer - within a fairly short space of time you'll want a laptop as well, and then a new pc after about 2 years.

If you do buy a pair of skis I'd advise you to buy a double ski bag because it won't be long before you'll be wanting a second pair - for ski-ing in powder, in the park, or whatever the latest excuse is

Ally
With the greatest respect, I'd pretty much ignore everything thats been said in this post.
Firstly, there is nothing to make anyone want to own more than 1 pair, other than vanity, greed, limitless funds, or being some kind of serious/pro skier. Having never owned your own Ally, you really cannot imagine what goes through a ski owners mind when he/she is in the shop.
Also, owning a double ski bag nowadays is NOT good advice, because of all the issues we have previously covered on this forum about ski carriage - just in case anyone isn't up to speed, most airlines now charge you for only 1 pair of skis and/or a weight limit per bag, so be prepared to pay 2 lots of ski carriage if this is the case. BA might be your best bet if you have a double bag.

In response to the first post, I have now owned 4 pairs of skis. My first pair were for an improving intermediate and were, looking back, quite rubbish. I bought them after having only skied a couple of weeks and getting the bug, and wanting to have everything. I improved quickly and was advised to get some better and quicker skis, which I did.
I then developed an interest in skiing off piste and powder, which my skis were not really designed for, so I bought a 2nd pair and took them on a trip when I got away with taking 2 pairs in my ski bag! But I found them too long for me, and sold them for more than I paid for them, and sold my other pair and bought a pair of all mountain skis, which enable me to ski on or off piste, or in fact on anything I want without too much trouble. I'd suggest you seek advice and think seriously about what you want to ski and where you want to ski it. Do some research on the net, talk to sales people in the shops, but most importantly don't kid yourself you're a better skier than you are or that you can handle stuff that you can't, and buy the appropriate skis for your level, or that might help take you to a higher one.
Remember this though - the most important thing you'll buy are your boots. Get them right and you can ski any old skis pretty well. Having said that, I do find I am now "at home" with my current skis. In fact, I regard them as good friends. You need to have a relationship with your skis. Respect and care for them, treat them well, love and caress them from time to time, and they will look after you on the snow.

Owning my skis enables me to get used to what they can do, and it takes away any bedding in period you have with a new pair of skis when you rent, or the risk of getting some right old dogs that haven't been cared for, which is more than likely!

You'll need to consider ability, speed, length, turning radius, terrain etc before committing to buy, but do the research and take advice. This is not a bad place to start. Technology IS changing all the time, but to be honest a lot of it is either not necessary or a bit of a gimmick. Only the really good skiers and pros will be able to tell you what they allow them to do better.

Don't buy 2nd hand, you just don't know what they've been through. You can buy new skis cheap in resort, at the end of the season, or from the previous years collection. For example my skis were half price new - why? Because the graphics on the top sheet were different. In fact I preferred the graphics on the older seasons model, which was nice

How tall are you? What do you weigh? What do you like to ski? Do you aspire to ski anything else, ie moguls, off piste, powder etc? How many times a season will you ski? Can you afford £30 each time you go in order to get them serviced and tuned up so they remain in top condition? And are you happy to pay £30 to send them on a flight? Answer all of these and you'll be able to come up with some kind of plan.

As for carrying them around - its only from the car to the check in, and then from the baggage carousel at the other end to the coach....hardly a big deal. Invest in a decent bag though, padded or solid.

I'm sure theres a million other things to discuss, but thats all I can add at this moment. Hope its useful. My skiing has come on leaps and bounds since I got the right boots and my current pair of skis, but going 3 times a season probably has something to do with it as well.

T
www  New and improved me

Topic last updated on 04-April-2011 at 20:05

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