Thursday, October 18, 2012

More skis than you require.

I bought another pair of skis.  That makes six pairs.  I think i just managed to get out skiing six times last year (it was a bad snow year). That's unconscionable, I should donate a few pairs to poor Finns in need of decent skis.

(There is nothing to make you realize what a shabby bachelor lifestyle you live than taking photos in your kitchen.)

My collection (from left to right) includes:
  • Fischer RCR Skate: purchased for Arrowhead training and possible race use.
  • Bonna Waxless: my only waxless skis and a little too short for me; my go-to slush and road skis.  These are my worst skis and unfortunately my most used
  • Fischer Country Wax: the skis that finished Arrowhead.  Very nice all conditions on and off track skis.  The ski I recommend to others.
  • Fischer Europa 99 Wax: my first skis.  The full metal edge makes them nice for icy slopes. 
  • Åsnes Military Surplus: The new skis.  Set up detailed below.
  • Fischer RCR Classic: hopefully to be used at Arrowhead this year.
I really couldn't resist the new Åsnes skis.  They were $15 plus shipping, are very fat, came with skins (an additional $10) and white.

White is super cool.  Why?  When I was in Finland (btw, all of my conversations for the past year have included this phrase) we used white army skis and there is nothing cooler than watching someone ski on white skis.  It looks like they're just gliding along the ground; like magic.  Suomalainen taika.

(find the skis)

I intend to set up these skis to be as close to those skis I used in Finland as possible.  The size is approximately right.  The Åsnes are a little lighter and have a metal edge which the Finnish skis didn't have.  The main problem is finding appropriate boots and bindings.  The boots were like rubber galoshes and used a kind of cable binding.  

I thought I had a solution in the military surplus bindings below, and literally a pair of galoshes, but it turns out the bindings are a rather poor American copy of a primitive Italian AT binding.  Apparently they are known for breaking cables.  I'm not surprised as every step crushes the cable under the boot.  Who thought that was a good idea?  At least they were cheap ($10).

Now I'm thinking I'll have to abandon that idea and use some old three pin bindings and find some decent boots.  That kind of ruins the cheap theme though.  It looks like I've got some time before it snows though.  Maybe some good cable bindings will show up. 

I'm obsessed.


JSchlesinger said...

From a fellow nordic ski lover to another, thanks for the post! It's comforting to know that I'm not the only one with half-a-dozen skies. At at least our sport has cheap gear available at garage sales and thrift shops.

I'm hoping to build up a small supply so that I can introduce my friends and family members to the sport. For this reason, I purchased a pair of german 70cm kids skis at a thrift shop for $4. Needless to say I'm not married and don't have any kids!

Thanks for blogging! I look forward to following you!


Matt Maxwell said...

I'm lucky to work at a bike/ski shop that rents nordic skis. I've used the rentals to introduce both friends and family to it, though I don't know that any have really taken to it like I have.

I know a few people who have used kids skis to build gear sleds/pulks to pull behind them. I just use a regular plastic toboggan. But then if you can find a real live kid to use the skis, so much the better!

Soren Andersen said...

When mounting the military surplus bindings, you could try putting the cables above the plate and not below it ... but there are also the Nato 120 bindings from Rottefella though hard to get.