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      Best place to buy skiis     

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08/20/2014 09:00AM   (Thread Older Than 3 Years)
online in the U.S. or stores in Minnesota?
 
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08/20/2014 09:20AM  
i wouldn't buy skis online, they should be fitted for you. this is very important if you want good performance out of your skis. rei does not do this, the employees at rei will send you to a different store if you are a serious skier looking for skis. i'm not sure where you are, my daughter in law used to work at ski hut in duluth, but when they (my son and her) were buying skis they would come to the cities, either finn-sisu or gear west are outstanding. the last pair of skis i bought at finn sisu the sales guy spent an hour testing different skis, and i am an overweight fifty something. if you are back country skiing fit is not such an issue, i would still want a knowledgeable rep get me in the right gear, hoigaards and midwest mountaineering are also very good for back country gear.
 
cheesewiz
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08/20/2014 01:40PM  
quote jwartman59: "i wouldn't buy skis online, they should be fitted for you. this is very important if you want good performance out of your skis. rei does not do this, the employees at rei will send you to a different store if you are a serious skier looking for skis. i'm not sure where you are, my daughter in law used to work at ski hut in duluth, but when they (my son and her) were buying skis they would come to the cities, either finn-sisu or gear west are outstanding. the last pair of skis i bought at finn sisu the sales guy spent an hour testing different skis, and i am an overweight fifty something. if you are back country skiing fit is not such an issue, i would still want a knowledgeable rep get me in the right gear, hoigaards and midwest mountaineering are also very good for back country gear. "

+1
 
zehyani
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08/20/2014 04:25PM  
Hoigaards in St. Louis Park is another great place. In addition, Pioneer Midwest in Osseo.
Try going to www.skinnyski.com and looking around. that will give you some ideas
 
08/20/2014 05:55PM  
Been looking at the Country crown in Fisher which I have had something like that the last 30 years in a 205 cm lentgh and very hard use and it held up good but old age is catching up to it.

Also looking at the

Spider62 skis

in a 189 length in a NNN BC binding which I have now.

Most of the online places at present don't have many skiis in stock yet.

Yes it is much better to buy in the store,but I could mount my own binding.
Bought my last pair aT REI in Bloomington,may go that route again. FitzHarris in St. Cloud use to have a lot of skiis once also. Looking for ideas>

I am in the Mille Lacs area.
 
Banksiana
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08/25/2014 02:25AM  
Pengals in Ely has a decent selection and is experienced with fitting skiers (he takes care of most of the high school teams on the Range and loads of citizen racers). Not sure when he starts fitting skis. I've found lots of deals there.
 
08/25/2014 09:36PM  
quote Banksiana: "Pengals in Ely has a decent selection and is experienced with fitting skiers (he takes care of most of the high school teams on the Range and loads of citizen racers). Not sure when he starts fitting skis. I've found lots of deals there."

Thanks.
 
08/29/2014 10:49PM  
Fitzharris in St Cloud is good.
 
NotLight
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09/20/2014 08:32PM  
quote PINETREE: "Been looking at the Country crown in Fisher which I have had something like that the last 30 years in a 205 cm lentgh and very hard use and it held up good but old age is catching up to it.

Also looking at the

Spider62 skis

in a 189 length in a NNN BC binding which I have now.

Most of the online places at present don't have many skiis in stock yet.

Yes it is much better to buy in the store,but I could mount my own binding.
Bought my last pair aT REI in Bloomington,may go that route again. FitzHarris in St. Cloud use to have a lot of skiis once also. Looking for ideas>

I am in the Mille Lacs area."



I think it depends on what you are looking for. If you want in-track skis, then yes Finn-Sisu and Gear West are really good. I also thought Boulder Mountain Sports was going to open a store in Bloomington. But, if you want out of track skis, these guys have nothing for you.

Hoigaards usually carries the BC Crown. I think they also had the BC wax last year. REI carries the Rossignol EVO OT, which is a similar ski to the Spider 62, with the 3/4 metal edge. I got those for my daughter last year at REI and they are fantastic - super light.

If you want fat backcountry skis, then you can go to Midwest Mountaineering in Minneapolis. Neptune Mountaineering in Boulder, and OMC in Portland also have backcountry skis, if you want to order online. Also, ORS seems to be good, but I have no experience with them. I would not hesitate to order backcountry skis online, if you research enough and know what you want, because it is hard to find that kind of thing locally, even in MN.



 
09/20/2014 09:12PM  
Thinking maybe waiting to winter stuff comes out and check REI in the cities,also the Fischer 78 S bound might be something to look at?
 
NotLight
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09/20/2014 10:59PM  
I think you'd like the EVO OT much better. The full length metal edges on the Fischers are heavy.

But I've heard others on this site warn about the metal edges sticking to grass, etc. So even the EVO OT might not be a good choice if you are skiing on thin snow on grass. I like the metal edges because we usually ski on the lake where there's no grass, and lors of crusty snow and sometimes bare ice.

 
09/21/2014 08:06AM  
quote NotLight: "I think you'd like the EVO OT much better. The full length metal edges on the Fischers are heavy.


But I've heard others on this site warn about the metal edges sticking to grass, etc. So even the EVO OT might not be a good choice if you are skiing on thin snow on grass. I like the metal edges because we usually ski on the lake where there's no grass, and lors of crusty snow and sometimes bare ice.


"


The EVO look like good skiis and are lighter,and really I wonder if a metal edge is a over-kill for the flat country of the BWCA? The partial metal edge would be all you may want if any?
 
09/21/2014 09:05AM  
unless you are planning to ski at lutsen i think any metal edge is overkill for minnesota. the metal stiffens the ski and makes them unresponsive.
 
09/21/2014 09:45AM  
quote jwartman59: "unless you are planning to ski at lutsen i think any metal edge is overkill for minnesota. the metal stiffens the ski and makes them unresponsive."

That is what I am starting to think,but no experience in the metal edge by me. Fluffy snow,across lakes I know they wouldn't help,maybe on glare ice or hard packed trails?
Maybe just stick with the 60mm width range instead of going wider?
 
NotLight
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09/21/2014 04:14PM  
quote PINETREE: "quote jwartman59: "unless you are planning to ski at lutsen i think any metal edge is overkill for minnesota. the metal stiffens the ski and makes them unresponsive."


That is what I am starting to think,but no experience in the metal edge by me. Fluffy snow,across lakes I know they wouldn't help,maybe on glare ice or hard packed trails?
Maybe just stick with the 60cm width range instead of going wider? "


It's seems hard to find skis wider than 60mm without metal edges. I have seen some old school wooden ones like that, but I have zero skills to make them.

I have looked at the Asnes breidablikk at Neptune Mountaineering in Boulder. That's a 60mm+ ski without metal edges. Also very light. Also very expensive. Did not have much of a camber to it. Wish I could read Norwegian to learn more.

 
09/21/2014 05:23PM  
I noticed that 60mm is about as wide as you get without medal edge as you said.
Might be something to it,that a wider flat ski bigger than that would really slide around but under 60 mm your O'kay.

I have the Fischer Country crown ski in a 205cm and they are 20 years old,but they did me good,maybe just have to buy me a new pair of them. It does show the Country Crown is time tested and still around.
Just though maybe a little more floatation with a little more width in fresh snow ,like over 2 feet last year.
 
tonyyarusso
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09/21/2014 09:54PM  
quote NotLight: "I have looked at the Asnes breidablikk at Neptune Mountaineering in Boulder. That's a 60mm+ ski without metal edges. Also very light. Also very expensive. Did not have much of a camber to it. Wish I could read Norwegian to learn more."
If you're curious enough to pay for it, I have an uncle who is a Norwegian-to-English translator. I'm sure he'd enjoy a break from contracts to write about skis!
 
NotLight
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09/23/2014 06:13PM  

I noticed that REI now shows the Fischer S-bound 98 and 112 as available on their website. They seemed to run out early in the season last year. Not much interesting for NNN or 75mm boots though.
 
Banksiana
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09/23/2014 09:27PM  
If you want wide skis without metal edges look on ebay and craigslist for some old Epoke 900. Last forever, keep their camber forever and float like a pfd. Not fast or very light but hey will get you there. It's what Shurke and Steger rode to the north pole.
 
NotLight
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09/27/2014 09:52PM  
I bought Crispi Antarctic 75mm boots today, in Boulder. I should be way more excited. But, they seem like overkill for skiing around lake Minnetonka. Way too heavy. I think you could lift a car with the 3-pin rubber tab. I think I read about some Arctic explorer losing some fingers to frostbite fixing a binding. I can see why, think the boots just rip them right out of the skis. The engineering is appalling to me.

But, I'll have the fun of trying something new and seeing how it works this winter, and at the same time I'll be providing artifact ski boots for archeologists to dig up several hundred thousand years from now. I think the 3-pin rubber tabs will last that long.

But yeah, hard to shop for that kind of thing - travelled a long way to get it.
 
Mocha
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09/28/2014 09:04AM  
ski equip sale found this... maybe they still have some things for sale.
 
NotLight
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09/30/2014 12:57PM  
quote Mocha: " ski equip sale found this... maybe they still have some things for sale."

I looked there, but they only seemed to have skis for "normal people" there, not really fat gigantic stuff. Assuming I didn't miss it. Thanks.

I now have backordered Fischer S-bound 98's from REI. They sold out everywhere early last year, so I figure I am not alone in my choice of these and thereby safe. I paid full retail, which I'm not 100% comfortable doing, since there is probably a more suitable and lighter old school setup on craigslist if I looked long enough. But, whatever.

I'm going to put 75mm Voile bindings (from REI) on the new skis. But I think my E109's that I bought last year will remain binding-less for another season. I want to try the 75mm for a year before I maybe "ruin" the E109's glide with too heavy of a boot and binding setup.

 
09/30/2014 01:37PM  
Let us know how you like the Fischer 98,been looking at the Fiscer S78 series. Still wondering if you need the metal edge in Minnesota and the wider ski than a 60mm. Would like a wider ski for when woods skiing on untrampled snow. Still reading reviews.
 
NotLight
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09/30/2014 01:46PM  
quote PINETREE: "Let us know how you like the Fischer 98,been looking at the Fiscer S78 series. Still wondering if you need the metal edge in Minnesota and the wider ski than a 60mm. Would like a wider ski for when woods skiing on untrampled snow. Still reading reviews."

I have a pair of 58mm or so non metal edge Fischer S-bound or whatever's that I got about 7 years ago to supplement my old high school racing skis. They are standard NNN bindings. When I ski on ungroomed snow over 4", I get a lot of ankle fatigue trying to keep the skis squared up in the snow. Not much better overall then my high school skis. But I like them because of the light weight, no wax, and shorter length. I can always keep them in the van in the winter with no space or sticky wax hassle, and sometimes when there is fresh light snow I'll ski to the grocery store and such in them, and I don't care if they get beat up on the sidewalk and stuff - because I kind of hate them because they are not really what I wanted to buy. So they are ok.

I also have a pair of S-bound 78's with NNN BC boots that work much better. Much less ankle fatigue. I think it is a combination of the width and the metal edge holding power, and maybe the binding. The boots are not drastically stiffer even though they are NNN BC (they are actually the Solomon version of NNN BC, a bit different.) I do not think the metal edge is too heavy - the weight penalty is far outweighed by less fatigue on my lower legs. I think you would be ok in those, or in the EVO OT's like I got my daughter last year that I really like. But, they might not work in groomed trails or on thin snow where there's grass to catch on.

But wanting a bit more float, but still some glide, I got the S-bound 98's and E109's. They are kind of a compromise, and may be too heavy to glide and still to skinny to float. But because they seemed to be "popular", I went that route. I am hoping they work out, and will repost here in the Spring. As you referred to in your original post, it is hard to find what you want in the store, or find the right store, and then you cant just try them out for a week before you buy. Well, which is why I read this website.

EDIT: the reason that I wanted more float is different I think than people traveling in really deep snow or slush, or telemarking, or carrying heavy packs. For me, after a really long 8 hour day or so on the S-bound 78's, I still find that I am having to recruit too many small muscle groups to keep the skis stable all day. I want more float for stability - so that I can really only use the larger muscle groups that I normally use for running, etc, so I have less fatigue. I think my larger muscles can bear the weight of a heavier fatter ski and metal edges more than the rest of my muscles can handle lack of stability.



 
09/30/2014 02:28PM  
skinnyski has a classified section. all sorts of stuff here. also this is where the experts can answer ski questions.
 
caribouluvr
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10/06/2014 12:35PM  
I can vouch for Continental Ski in Duluth. My wife and I got top-notch service and fitting there a couple of years back for classic skis.
 
NotLight
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10/14/2014 11:43PM  
The Fischer S-Bound 98's that I ordered showed up at REI today. They are lighter than I expected. Getting the 3-pin bindings put on at REI ($22.50). I'll post pictures and a review as soon as there's snow.








Tiny bit of snow in the mountains on my run today. Maybe not long.


 
NotLight
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10/23/2014 11:12PM  

Posted a picture of the S-Bound 98's, the Voile 75mm bindings, and the Crispi Antarctics in edited post above.... Skis and bindings were REI backorder bought online sight unseen, and the Crispi's I had to buy in Boulder, CO in person. I would not recommend buying boots online, as the fit is so person specific, and sometimes it is hard to return online things. And, that makes it hard to really buy the bindings until you've picked out boots.... But finding someone who sells 3-pin boots or even NNN BC boots is not easy.

I'll post a review once there is snow here in the mountains... What I can say, is the idea that the S-bound 98's have 1.5 camber is quite generous. I think a 6 year old could flatten out the kick zone on these. I think my S-bound 78's and E109's have much more camber, and I suspect will be much more enjoyable for all but the really deep snow.




 
10/24/2014 08:18AM  
Been looking at the Fischer s78'sdo you like them and do they fill heavy at all. How do you think they will perform mostly on flat country and deep snow?
 
NotLight
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10/24/2014 08:29AM  
quote PINETREE: "Been looking at the Fischer s78'sdo you like them and do they fill heavy at all. How do you think they will perform mostly on flat country and deep snow? "

Hard to say. I really like my 78's for lake skiing. I don't think they are too heavy for that particular purpose. But, the lake snow I ski on is never very deep, often somewhat compacted, and sometimes icy. I think the 78's are too wide for groomed trails. It may be that a 3/4 metal edge is a better choice. I got my 78's because they were on clearance.

If the snow is not deep, and you can catch on grass, then the Fischer BC wax is maybe a better ski. The BC's are a "safer" choice than the 78's in many ways.

I think if the snow is really deep, then fatter skis are better. But the skis get heavy. I am still trying to figure that out.

 
11/06/2014 09:29PM  
quote NotLight: "quote PINETREE: "Been looking at the Fischer s78'sdo you like them and do they fill heavy at all. How do you think they will perform mostly on flat country and deep snow? "


Hard to say. I really like my 78's for lake skiing. I don't think they are too heavy for that particular purpose. But, the lake snow I ski on is never very deep, often somewhat compacted, and sometimes icy. I think the 78's are too wide for groomed trails. It may be that a 3/4 metal edge is a better choice. I got my 78's because they were on clearance.


If the snow is not deep, and you can catch on grass, then the Fischer BC wax is maybe a better ski. The BC's are a "safer" choice than the 78's in many ways.


I think if the snow is really deep, then fatter skis are better. But the skis get heavy. I am still trying to figure that out.


"


I have the Fischer BC waxless and really they have been a very good ski for me,just wish maybe a little more floatation. Probably not a perfect ski out there?
 
12/05/2014 05:55PM  
Any sales going on?
 
NotLight
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12/05/2014 08:58PM  
No. All my 20% off black friday email coupons were emphatic NO SKIS, NO BOOTS, etc. - and they don't even have the no Hilleberg no Western Mountaineering exceptions.

But if the warm weather keeps up, that'll change.
 
12/05/2014 09:12PM  
quote NotLight: "No. All my 20% off black friday email coupons were emphatic NO SKIS, NO BOOTS, etc. - and they don't even have the no Hilleberg no Western Mountaineering exceptions.


But if the warm weather keeps up, that'll change.
"


I think the ski sales are coming,they are hoping we will buy at full price now.
 
02/20/2015 06:53PM  
Just bumped to tell you in many places you can get awesome ski prices now.
 
NotLight
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02/27/2015 01:04PM  
quote Pinetree: "Just bumped to tell you in many places you can get awesome ski prices now."

Campsaver has the Fischer BC wax, and no wax, both on sale in their outlet with the SAVE20 code for about $100 shipped. Not bad.
 
02/27/2015 01:50PM  
quote NotLight: "quote Pinetree: "Just bumped to tell you in many places you can get awesome ski prices now."


Campsaver has the Fischer BC wax, and no wax, both on sale in their outlet with the SAVE20 code for about $100 shipped. Not bad.
"


I have used that ski in a no wax for over 25 years and it has done me well.
 
NotLight
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09/03/2015 04:18PM  

3-pin boots still seem to be the toughest thing to find....

I've been scouring ebay for a second set of 3-pin boots all summer. No luck. Lots of boots though, if you happen to be a mens size 8 or so.....

I will probably end up paying full price for another pair of boots. I called Neptune Mountaineering last week. They have boots in, but they are not put into their web store yet. Maybe a couple weeks. Expensive (Crispis and Alpina Alaska), but very nice.
 
09/03/2015 07:41PM  
Got a pair of Crispis(not 3 pin) last year. Built very well-should last much longer than I am going too. Look forward to winter skiing.
 
NotLight
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09/28/2015 12:42PM  


Was looking at boots again today. This year REI has Alpina Alaska NNN BC, all sizes. $249. $20 gift card offer right now, plus regular dividend makes them a bit cheaper. OMCgear.com (I've bought from them before), has Alpina Alaska 3-pin 75mm and NNN BC for $219. Neptune Mountaineering has Alpina Alaska 75mm 3 pin for $249. Neptune also has the Crispi Antarctics now, but limited sizes, and $300.

So still hard to find good 75mm boots, and when you can they are often expensive.

 
09/28/2015 02:09PM  
Very happy with a crisi boot in leather I bought last year in a NNN binding.
 
NotLight
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07/21/2016 10:01AM  

Not the best idea to buy boots online, but ORS has a couple of styles of 3-pin Alpina boots on sale now 50% off. The 3-pins are hard to find.


link
 
12/11/2016 11:05AM  
any sales now?
 
NotLight
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12/11/2016 11:19AM  
quote Pinetree: "any sales now?"

No. I saw some ski swaps on skinnyski.com, but they were earlier in the month. Could chack again.

LL Bean handles those Altai Hok skis with the berwin type bindings. I know they had a 20% off sale about black Friday or so. Might be expired.

 
NotLight
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12/11/2016 07:50PM  
Just got Midwest Mountaineering newsletter. They have a big xc ski sale right now, like 20-40% off. Lots of other good sales too - like 20-25% off subzero sleeping bags.
 
schweady
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12/11/2016 09:36PM  
quote NotLight: "Just got Midwest Mountaineering newsletter. They have a big xc ski sale right now, like 20-40% off. Lots of other good sales too - like 20-25% off subzero sleeping bags.
"

They do a top-notch fitting, too, along with finding the unique pair of skis (even after you have decided on the brand/model) that have the proper wax pocket/camber for your weight and stride. Not every pair is exactly the same, even in identical length/brand/model #.
 
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