Bad Bob

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How does skiing an older ski affect the skier?

A number of members on here with a lot of retro equipment, but I am not one. Skiing an old pair of VR17's or Hart Javelins has to require a lot of different stimulus than our modern skis, but it can't be the same as in the skis' time. My old Henke's were a far site from my current Solomon's, arguably a bigger difference than the skis of then and now. Remember going from those old Henke's to a Lange Standard and how the skiing altered on the same skis.

If you are skiing a vintage ski does the required inputs change depending on the vintage of the skis?

Have you tried the same skis with period appropriate boots? If so how did that affect the stability and required input of a ski? Can you even use vintage boots with indemnified bindings?

The reason for the questions is beyond curiosity. It may be the alcohol of these past few weeks, but contemplating picking up a couple pairs of 60's/70's skis from the local sources, after the thrift stores reopen, tuning them, mounting indemnified bindings and giving them a go next season. Would really be interesting to find something really old and try with newer boots. If I go there would be interested in picking up a pair of leather boots to get the full on experience, fully understand that plastic shells from the way back are a really bad idea(I like rolling in the snow). Which brings back an earlier question: Can you even use vintage boots with indemnified bindings?

Would appreciate hearing from members of the collective and getting their input based on their experience. Thanks.
 

Tim Hodgson

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Buy all three videos. I did. They are awesome videos because Lito is an awesome instructor! And because they predate parabolic skis, the videos are specifically tailored to the movement patterns required of the straight, parallel skis of the time.


And get ready for rotary!

(BTW, Tom Gellie, is in my opinion, the Lito of today's parabolic skis.)
 

Philpug

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Interesting. Do I start from the ski up or the boot down?

SKIS: As one who does take out older straight skis from time to time, Rossignol 4S, The Ski, K2 710, it is for novelty reasons only. It is kinda like riding a bike, the technique regresses immediately...except for the one time at band camp...err Northstar I forgot I was on some 4S's and as I went into 15m turn, the 45m sidecut went straight and I fell over. It was on the flats of West Ridge and my shoulder was sore the rest of the season.

BINDINGS: When taking the older skis out I will try to stay period correct but with a binding that I would be confident in (Other than a Spademan S4). it is usually an all metal version ie Marker M30/MRR, Look Z/ZR, Salomon 957E/R. I will usually torque the binding to make sure it is performing within range and I would also set it on the lower side because I am just out there playing around and not pushing the ski/binding near it's limit.

BOOTS: The oldest I have skied this century have been from the very early 1980's, Scott Superlites, Nordica Polaris and Kastinger Porsche Design. The Scotts are very uncomfortable and I don't know how people skied then back in the 70's and 80's. The Polaris and Kastinger "lever design" actually ski pretty darn well, even today.

As far as inter era compatability.

SKI/BINDING: Any narrow braked modern binding will work on an older ski. As far as an older binding on a modern ski? This first is limited to brake options. You really cannot go prior to the late 1980's to find a binding that has a removable brake and that starts with the Salomon *57 series. Look Pivots ie RS89/89 could have a modern brake pedestal work with the heel. Personally, I would not consider any older binding that is not all metal. The Delran plastics from this era were just not good.

BOOT/BINDING: DIN toe and heels designs were standardized in the late 1970s so any boot from that era will work with a modern binding but as with the plastics of an older binding, I would not suggest using one. Getting into an older leather boot with a modern binding, I would nore recommend that either. IF you are to consider that, because there were no standards in boots, just guidelines. You will need a binding like a Salomon Driver that has both toe height and wing adjustments to get a somewhat usable interface.

DISCLAIMER: Again the one case bad judqement that was against this was at Stowe in the mid 2000's when I took my pair of 1974 The Ski down Goat. At that time the skis were mounted with some period Tyrolia 350's...with straps. About three turns in the bindings released and as I tumbled for the next 50 yard, the skis while still attatched to me kept hitting me up side my head and other various parts of my body saying "You stupid idiot..why did come down this trail.." I think @mdf or @Erik Timmerman still have pictures.
 
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Bad Bob

Bad Bob

old n' slow
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@Philpug thank you for your input that will help a bunch.

The object of the proposed exercise is to how different the input will be to make a ski perform. To see if within the limitations we mere mortals can extract enjoyment from the skis. In the 60's/70's probably logged over 1500 days skiing and could turn both ways, so thinking it might be interesting to revisit some old friends and spend a few runs with them again. Suspect that it would sharpen some skills that haven't been used much for quite a while (haven't done a wedeln for a LONG time).

So how much do the skis define what we must do to obtain any performance?
 

Tim Hodgson

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One more observation. Rotary whether Killy or Lito was, IMHO, to compensate for the relative inability of people like me to really get forward enough to make the old straight parallel skis to carve.

So to promote pressuring the ski's tips, the boots of that era had a more pronounced forward lean.

And to assure that the skier actually leaned forward to transmit weight/pressure to the skis tips, in addition to more pronounced forward lean the boots of that era had a hard plastic "spine" on the back of the boot to make sure that the boot prevented the skier from leaning back.

When I went from my 1999 Lange L10 Race boots (which had that forward lean and heavy plastic spine) to the modern Lange RS 130 (with a more upright stance and without that heavy plastic spine), I immediately noticed that "technical skiing" (i.e., carving the ski around and under and to the other side -- all on edge) with modern shaped/parabolic skis was decidedly harder to do on the newer more upright RS 130's than it was with the older Lange L10's because it takes more "active" forward lean/pressure against the cuff of the newer more upright stanced RS 130 to hook up and to keep hooked up the tips of the skis though that type of carve.

When I told that to my boss, our trainer who was also standing there said "Yup."

I would like to hear what Phil and others who went through the same boot desing transitions have to say about this.
 
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François Pugh

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Going back to straighter skis, if you wanted to carve arc-2-arc back in the day on the old skis, the physics and General Theory of Carvitivity (:ogbiggrin:) was the same then as it is now; you had to bend and shape the ski using the available forces and put it on edge. The Specific Theory of Carvativity (:ogbiggrin: )differs in that you needed to exert quite a bit of leverage on the tips and fore body of the skis to get them curved before, or at the latest as you put them on edge, and you had to start slicing your groove with the tips and follow through with the rest of the ski. Today with greater side cut, you can just weight and tip the skis without the forward bias and all the extra leverage applied to the tips, although if you do apply a forward weight bias, it will still start the turn just fine (and finish it too if you remember to shift to the middle and tail as needed).

Boots from the '80s still work fine, although many suffer from poor plastics and plastic fatigue. Ditto for bindings; beware of plastic failure. In fact I still prefer the greater forward lean for high performance skiing.

I occasionally take my old SGs out to play, and they still carve fine, but turns are much wider, and it takes me a while before I'm not in danger, as Phil said, of falling to the inside on a 70-m ski after skiing 13-m skis for most of the year.

Going back to leather boots, YOU have to judge if the boot is going to be held in the bindings. Ankle-high boots, leather with plastic and the leather lace-ups will seriously limit the amount of leverage you will be able to put on the skis. I would save those for skiing the somewhat softer all-wood with metal screw-on edges and cable bindings, speaking of which, good luck skiing those on ice unless you have old-school skills at keeping them sharp!

As far as wheedling, short radius turns, and the like, I was never into that technique back then. All I wanted to do was ski faster; I was too heavily influenced by those crazy Canucks.
 
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Bad Bob

Bad Bob

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There was very little carving in the 60's till really the 90's other than in a race course. Was fortunate enough to spend a week with Warren Witherell in Spring of 74 at A Basin with some really fine skiers, there was not much carving once we got off the lower blues. The only way you carved a wedlen was on a pair of Ciff Taylors.

The boots ran a gambit; the higher end Nordicas and the like did a great job of making you flex your ankle, and so long as you used the tongue steering and edging. The Hanson's and that whole ilk just kind of promoted skiing in the back of your boots. It will be interesting to ski and old ski with current boots, then as time goes by with an older leather boot. We will see.

By the time the thrift stores open again, it should be the happy hunting grounds for old gear.
 

Paul Lutes

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I'd consider going back to old gear only under one condition - my concurrent body for the gear at the time was part of the package and I get to keep all my knowledge and skill gained since then. The idea of going back now with my current body? Not in a bazillion years, nor for all the Willy Gates dollars.
 
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Bad Bob

Bad Bob

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No intent here to give up on modern gear. I am a little nuts, but I am not crazy.
 

falcon_o

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This past winter, at Killington, I pulled a very old arrow / boot combination out of my retirement quiver - 212 cm Salomon 1S GS skis driven with Salomon SX91 Equipe boots deserting my newly acquired 177cm K2 Mindbenders and Dalbello Krypton Pro boots.

It was a religious experience eliciting cries of OH GOD these Fing things don't turn !!!!!!! But half way down the first run of the morning on black diamond corduroy and passing Mach 3 I remembered why I enjoyed these skis way back when and what it took to drive them. But after a few runs down memory lane it was time to return them to hospice care.

One of my friends suggested I try them on Outer Limited moguls but I am certain it would have been I in hospice care if I had.

100_0652.JPG

100_0653.JPG
 

Philpug

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This past winter, at Killington, I pulled a very old arrow / boot combination out of my retirement quiver - 212 cm Salomon 1S GS skis driven with Salomon SX91 Equipe boots deserting my newly acquired 177cm K2 Mindbenders and Dalbello Krypton Pro boots.

It was a religious experience eliciting cries of OH GOD these Fing things don't turn !!!!!!! But half way down the first run of the morning on black diamond corduroy and passing Mach 3 I remembered why I enjoyed these skis way back when and what it took to drive them. But after a few runs down memory lane it was time to return them to hospice care.

One of my friends suggested I try them on Outer Limited moguls but I am certain it would have been I in hospice care if I had.

View attachment 100975
View attachment 100976
I never understood putting Marker M48T bindings on these, the S957E (IMHO) were so much better. but is shows the loyalty that Marker was starting to command.
 

Bill Talbot

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This indian is still at least as comfortable on a 80's-90's ski as on a 2018 pair.
When swapping back and forth it is really quite interesting how you almost immediately switch gears and just go about the business at hand.
At my local ant hill where I can ski evenings after work, I can park at the edge of the snow/parking lot. So I will bring 3-5 pairs and change out
skis every 30 minutes or so. Great fun really :)
So perhaps a pair of Volkl Snow Rangers to a modern Rossi 165cm SL ski. Then a Rossi Freestyle to a Dynastar Legend Pro Rider to a Volkl Dragon Slayer. The possibilities for me are almost endless with about 140 pairs of skiables in the working museum.
 

Philpug

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@falcon_o here are my S9000 1S PR8 with the proper Salomon bindings S977E. Salomon had the fore mentioned S957E for the first year of the S9000 in the US, when the second year model was released is when they switched to the 977E.
F33E3C51-CC2F-4C7D-8181-CDEE95ED936B.jpeg
655710A1-5502-463B-8CC1-86A449604F43_1_201_a.jpeg
FA92741A-BBA6-422A-B799-E1B6C3861B6A.jpeg
 

Jjmd

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Volkl P9 RS super race stock 207. I had a complete base and edge tune done and they were good to go. Believe it or not, the Salomon suspension race bindings on these have been indemnified despite being 30+years old. They ski great, all things considered, you obviously have to initiate more forcefully as a 70 radius? ski doesn’t exactly draw you into the turn.With a decent effort you can make short turns on these, which was surprising since that is not what they were designed for. Not a ski to relax on but fun nonetheless. One word of caution when retuning these old race skis, don’t forget to detune the tips and tails more than modern skis. They won’t turn if you don’t.
D34A78EA-9967-4F7B-8A18-7A34F6F54A5B.jpeg
D34A78EA-9967-4F7B-8A18-7A34F6F54A5B.jpeg
 

Philpug

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Volkl P9 RS super race stock 207. I had a complete base and edge tune done and they were good to go. Believe it or not, the Salomon suspension race bindings on these have been indemnified despite being 30+years old. They ski great, all things considered, you obviously have to initiate more forcefully as a 70 radius? ski doesn’t exactly draw you into the turn.With a decent effort you can make short turns on these, which was surprising since that is not what they were designed for. Not a ski to relax on but fun nonetheless. One word of caution when retuning these old race skis, don’t forget to detune the tips and tails more than modern skis. They won’t turn if you don’t.
View attachment 101025
That S997 Suspension is not indemnified but I am sure it would pass with flying colors if tested. Personally, if someone came into my my shop, I would test it. IT would fail visual because it is NOT on the current list but I I would test it on my ASM machine. I skied that binding when it came out, I had a pair on my Salomon S9100 1S and it skied very well. I have a few pairs of Suspensions in my collection.
 

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