Japan ski

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Budgiesmuggler, Apr 20, 2017.

  1. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    I'm looking for a power/big mountain ski for off piste skiing in northern hemisphere, usually Japan but sometimes NA and Europe.

    Current skis are Blizzard Bonafide which I love for everything except pow where they don't float much and ice got to seriously lean back to keep thrmmmoving.

    I also have a pair of Praxis GPO which I took to Japan in 2016. They didn't float well, really hooked up on slow turns through trees (maybe due to the amount of snow and size of the ski), and I had to ski with an aggressive weight forward. The result was I felt I had not much control on the ski when it got steeper.

    I'm not a big guy - 175cm and 75kg so is this experience going to be the same for all wider pow skis?

    I'm looking at the Armada JJ - not usually the sort of ski I go for but I know people rave about it's Japan performance and i demoed it in Australia a couple years ago and quite liked it even on groomers.

    Also looking at Blizzard Cochise or bodacious which are the bigger models of the Bonafide.
     
  2. Froff Life

    Froff Life Dedicated Member
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    The Fischer Ranger 108 Ti looks reallllllyyy nice. Only 3mm wider underfoot than the Cochise. You can find the Rangers for a decent price online too
    [​IMG]
     
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  3. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver Dedicated Member

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    Un-matched and light weight. My DPS side-kick is smaller than you & he steers his Wailer 112's in a 178cm through anything in Japan or Canada without any issues.
    [​IMG]
     
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  4. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Part of the Furniture
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    I'd pick the 112s over the rangers or bonafide for Japan. Mind you, if I were to take a DPS ski to Japan it would be a pair of 120s, 138s or if I had the balls a pair of spoons.
     
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  5. PMG

    PMG Dedicated Member
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  6. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room
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    You(or perhaps I should say "I") really don't need skis as wide as that in Japan.... anything around 110mm is as wide as you need IMO.
    Depends more on the shape than 3-5mm either way.
     
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  7. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver Dedicated Member

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    Well this is, as you say totally your opinion.

    Over the 15 seasons i did in Japan across both Honshu & Hokkaido I skied everything from 76mm underfoot to 149mm (The Spoon - TPhat) and had a ball on them all.

    Your ski preference also depends on what type of skiing you're doing. For me rarely does piste come into consideration but it is a reality so you do want something that can handle the piste, as most off piste is accessed from a resort base. Generally we're moving across the ground at a decent pace, so I want something to handle both tight spaces and speed off piste. Based on my experience anything under 110mm is a waste of time. My two favourites are my 115mm RPC's and my Lotus 138 Spoons.

    So whilst we all might have an opinion they are based on our own skiing preferences. My wife for example is more than happy with a pair of W99's or C95's because it suits her skiing preference.

    Sure you don't need anything over 110mm but as I say to my kids all the time, "needs and wants are two separate beasts".
     
  8. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    I can only talk around my personal experience. You're considerably lighter than me. The widest skis I've used in Japan are 99mm underfoot and I found them fine, including in waist to chest deep snow. Mind you, on one particularly deep day (one) I thought extra width would be helpful.

    I am coming to the view that top profile, extent of early rise, tip and forebody flex and flex generally are as important as width alone for predicting soft snow performance.

    To be honest I would have thought 98mm underfoot is pretty wide for a 75kg body, but they are pretty stiff skis. I remember I also didn't like the tip dive on my Line Supernatural 100's which are reputedly similar to the Blizzard's, so I "feel you"!!!

    Have you thought about mid 100's skis like the Salomon QST106, Head Core 105, K2 Pinnacle 105 etc that are lighter and softer flexing? Reputedly they offer similar off piste performance to other, stiffer, skis with another 10mm width on them.

    Anyway, nothing wrong with the JJ. A friend skis them and loves them. I'd guess he's around 85kg and a very strong skier.
     
  9. Rimey

    Rimey Dedicated Member
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    I'm 75kg, 180cm and my DPS W112 Pures (184cm) are just perfect in the pow.
    They turn by themselves, so are perfect in the trees.
    Piste, no problem.
    In the last three years they've made my trips to Hakuba (x2) and this year, Chamonix.

    Float. One day in the pow in Italy, this year, I remember playing with my weight forward on the ski.
    I got my tips just under the snow surface so they'd spray a little, rather than the full face shot.
    These W112s are fun.
     
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  10. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    I'm thinking a mid 100 may be too similar to the. Bonafide at 98. I agree they're skiable and fun in pow but I'm not "skiing" them I'm riding the tails to keep the tips up.

    Have done some reading and wailer sounds interesting.whats he difference between pure and hybrid in how they ski?
     
  11. CarveMan

    CarveMan aussieskier.com
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    Strongly agree with this. You will see that the industry has backed off on the really big 120+mm wide skis.

    My ideal Japan ski is 115-120mm wide, front and rear rocker, directional, tapered tip profile and pretty soft. JJ fits this profile, as does the K2 Pinnacle 118, Black Crows Anima, Salomon QST 118.

    Overall I think the Blizzards are a little stiff for Japow, I think they're better in a steeper situation like Jackson / Snowbird / Tahoe etc etc.
     
  12. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver Dedicated Member

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    Let's skip forward into this year the:
    • Pure is now the Alchemist
    • Hybrid is now Foundation
    Alchemist (Pure) is stiffer, lighter and more lively. They hold a solid edge and give you plenty of rebound out of a turn. They will hold a better edge than anything in a similar width and at a lighter weight due to the carbon fibre construction.

    Foundation (Hybrid) is silkier, still lively but not as dialled up as the Alchemist, still light weight due to the bamboo core and more forgiving than the Alchemist.

    I hope this helps.
     
  13. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    Any thoughts on the JJ for Japan?

    I demoed in NZ about 5 years ago on hardpack and they surprisingly were a lot of fun.
     
  14. CarveMan

    CarveMan aussieskier.com
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    JJ is standard issue powder rental ski in Niseko, we sell tons of them after people get back & have fallen in love.
     
  15. craighelo

    craighelo Well-Known Member

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    The JJ is a ski that puts a smile on your face as soon as you click in and has you looking for jumps and deep powder stashes.
     
  16. Zimboo

    Zimboo Addicted Member

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    So IMO if you do your homework (away from what is cool and sells in Australia / USA), you will find that the Fischer Rangers are magic skis full of the latest tech with the biggest bang for your buck!!! I just purchased another new pair for 299 Euro ($420 Australian) which wifey will bring back in September! Interestingly, Fischer came down from 122mm max waist width last year to 115mm this year.
     
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  17. Dumph

    Dumph Active Member
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    Big fan of the Fischer Ranger 108 nomination, amazing ski and you can find if for incredible value. Unbelievable. I've got the 180 which is good for Japan and tight trees but if skiing bigger lines more open terrain would go for the 188.
     
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  18. Beerman

    Beerman Dedicated Member
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    Too many good skis, not enough ski days..................:(
     
  19. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver Dedicated Member

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    I'd prefer not to make comment about other skis. Some are great and some are good. There's not many bad skis made these days. Suffice to say that my offsider and mate who helps me with DPS demo days was on a pair of JJ's prior to moving across to DPS. He loved his JJ's.
    After his first run on a pair of DPS Wailer 112's he said, quote "these kill the JJ's". His words not mine.
    That first season when he went back to Canada he stopped a few people on DPS. One guy he'd seen just tear apart Powder Assault in the North Bowl at Revelstoke. The guy pulled up next to him and Chocko asked what he thought of his skis, the guy gave a two word answer...."Life Changing"... and skied away.
     
  20. bluess57

    bluess57 Active Member

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    Btw there's been a pair of dps wailer 112rp @178cm on gumtree in ACT region.
    Might be worth investigating.
    I have no affliation to seller.
     
  21. expatgm

    expatgm Active Member
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    Hi David on the DPS site they don't specify the weight of the Alchemist Ski, I'm guessing it's a tiny bit heavier than the pure3 ( not that it would make any difference in my case) Also what's the go with the binding riser plates on the Alchemist ski.
     
  22. Ajmit321

    Ajmit321 Active Member

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    I got some never used 116 mm Factions for sale for $400 in Vic.........................
     
  23. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    I'll hang out for $200 in June :)
     
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  24. Ajmit321

    Ajmit321 Active Member

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    Yep probably a wise idea ha ha
     
  25. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    So long until we can indulge our Japan skis in Japanese snow. Soooooo loooooong. Boo to that.

    I do have some Line Supernatural 108's "lined up" to use in Niseko next year and can't wait to see what they're like. I have to confess though I'm getting excited for what I'll be skiing on in Oz from June to October. Which will be Brahmas as an everyday ski and some Salomon QLabs for new snow days.
     
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  26. craighelo

    craighelo Well-Known Member

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    and level9 have them for US$299 with $29 shipping https://www.levelninesports.com/fischer-ranger-106-ti-skis
     
  27. Zimboo

    Zimboo Addicted Member

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    If we are talking apples for apples then this is not correct compared to my post. The 106 ti you are quoting is 3 seasons old. I was talking about our last seasons model (current model in Nth hemi) which has Carbon and Aeroshape. Further improvements!!!
     
    #27 Zimboo, Apr 24, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2017
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  28. DPS Driver

    DPS Driver Dedicated Member

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    Hi expatgm, I don't actually know what the weights are for each new Alchemist models. We've gone quite a bit beyond weight with this ski but I believe they might be a tad lighter than the Pure 3. It's funny at DPS we don't talk weight much at all and so the conversation has never came up to date with Alchemist because it was so much of a quantum leap in dampening and that's been the whole story.

    I'll explain why I think they're a bit lighter and it's to do with your second question. The flex is a critical component of the damper ride and ski contact with the snow. We've narrowed the profile of the Alchemist and semi capped the sidewall. The riser plate as you call it is actually a mounting plate to bring the ski back to the required width (thickness) to hold the binding. So there's a bit less Aspen in the core and bit less sidewall hence weight should be slightly reduced.

    We're not telling anyone how we managed to get the ski so damp (for a pure carbon fibre ski) but it's something we've been working on for three years. It's way out there as far as ski manufacturing is concerned and we don't want to give away our competitive advantage just yet. If you've skied our Pure3 then jump on a pair. You will be blown away at the difference. I think Darryl has his stock landed in QT if you want to see them in the flesh.
     
  29. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    Hey guys so I've found the skis I want and have had a look around online.

    We've just had a new baby and my wife is on at me to save some money, so I've been looking at some ex demo skis.

    The ski stopped being made in 2017 so my options are:

    2016 - new, not mounted - most expensive

    2016 - used demo - mounted with demo binding. Cheaper. Skis in decent condition have spoken to the shop. Skied about 15 days.

    2014 - used demo. Not much info on condition. I called the shop and they said that they would be in decent condition give the year, and bangs would have been fixed, and have been skied every year. But these are significantly cheaper - approx $250 cheaper than the other demos

    So what to do - take a risk on the Cheapies?
     
  30. Froff Life

    Froff Life Dedicated Member
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    W
    What are the actual skis you are looking at?
     
  31. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    Atomic Automatic 117
     
  32. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    I always like shiny shiny but the used ones will probably go just as well and (if you're like me) avoid the sense of disappointment when the shiny new toys have their first scratch
     
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  33. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    I like shinny new too - but trying To do my it to Dave money (but without actually having to not
     
  34. Dumph

    Dumph Active Member
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  35. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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  36. Telemark Phat

    Telemark Phat Part of the Furniture
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    Go to the Jindy Ski Swap on the opening weekend. There are always a lot of second hand fatties.
     
  37. Pink

    Pink Active Member

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    To the OP, what length are your GPOs? Aren't they much the same waist width as JJs? I know waist width isn't everything but I was wondering if maybe your GPOs are too short, mounted too far forward or (god forbid) there was some user error involved. The last two possible explanations are fixable without buying new skis.

    I'm lighter than you (similar height) and l've skied 175 and 185 rental JJs in knee to waist deep Japow. Tips were diving with 175 JJs so I swapped to 185 and loved them. Given that experience, I'd be happy to buy wider powder specific skis if I had the need or means. I day dream about needing to buy a pair of Praxis Protest or similar.
     
  38. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    Yes similar waist to the JJs but a much stiffer ski and less rocker. I found they didn't float that well for me. Mount point may have had an impact as they are more a centrally mounted ski.

    I've been on similar sized skis before and really liked it. Trying to stick to sub-180 as easier to get around trees etc.
     
  39. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    I'm much bigger than you and use 180cm skis +/- a cm or so. My ski bag is 180cm so I can't fit much longer in them!!!

    I'm sure there's an element of not skiing fast enough to test them but I find that sort of length ample off piste, and fine on piste. I don't really think I ski that slowly by the way - faster than the vast majority but slower than racers or local season long ski bums - but I don't ski at speeds I scare myself.

    My point here is at your weight that sort of length would be ample.

    Were you on 187's for the Praxis? If so no doubt that's part of the problem right there - too long! But it sounds like you just need a more forgiving wider ski. The Atomics sound perfect - go for it.

    I can't wait until June to start testing my new toys.
     
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  40. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    Gpo was 184cm - I don't think that much ski was the problem. It was just stiff soma lot of work. Maybe someone stronger or more aggressive could have driven harder but I found Japan depth soft snow was not their natural environment - others have also said it's not a natural pow ski
     
    #40 Budgiesmuggler, May 6, 2017
    Last edited: May 6, 2017
  41. Froff Life

    Froff Life Dedicated Member
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    Level 9 now have the latest Ranger 98Ti's available for delievery to Australia/NZ. And only 3 days after my birthday LOL
     
  42. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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  43. Budgiesmuggler

    Budgiesmuggler Addicted Member
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    I also found powder7.com has a big range of ex demo gear at decent prices and also gives good photos and descriptions of condition
     
  44. Zimboo

    Zimboo Addicted Member

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    No longer available in your size (188cm) Froth. :(
    Don't go for 180cm as you are way too big..........would be a bad buy.IMO
     
    #44 Zimboo, May 9, 2017
    Last edited: May 9, 2017
  45. Froff Life

    Froff Life Dedicated Member
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    Hmmm yes i did see they only had up to 180cm available....
    The longest ski I have ever used is only 178cm, Is it really going to make a massive difference going for the longer skis (185cm+)?
     
  46. Zimboo

    Zimboo Addicted Member

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    There is alot of rocker, so they ski very short for their length.
     
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  47. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    I just felt like reviving a gear discussion as the northern season approaches!!!
     
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  48. Sandy

    Sandy Dark Sith Lord of the Pool Room
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    I've seen these in the Tokyo ski shop area for about $250. Not sure if they are still there...
     
  49. Tanuki

    Tanuki Dedicated Member
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  50. Annabuzzy

    Annabuzzy Part of the Furniture
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    I had those skis.

    First, they’re a fantastic ski, full stop. The 100mm width would be fine (my last two trips were on 98mm and 99mm respectively). But the truth of it is I didn’t really like the feel of those skis in powder. They were entirely adequate, but I didn’t like the feel compared to some other skis, in that medium. True to say not everyone feels the same.
     
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