D3 Helix 2 Review has started

HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
After a bit of delay the review has finally started. I am 3 rides in plus the 5 or 6 rides took a month ago.

First impressions are as follows:
Ski is a little faster than average - but not mega fast
Off side turns are unusually smooth. It is easy to carry a lot of speed & angle back to the inside.

The ski is as user friendly as you would expect from D3.

20 or so rides to go.

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Comments

  • kstateskierkstateskier Posts: 518 Solid Baller
    You're going to really enjoy this ski!
    KStateSkier
    Bradley Beach - Lone Rock Ski Club, Missouri
    2004 Malibu Response LXI, 2014 D3 Helix 66"
  • jbwannjbwann Posts: 39 Baller
    edited March 2015
    @Horton I'm on the Nano One XT and sometimes I feel like I am maybe too aggressive and not good enough technically for that ski. I've been considering a D3 for a while after watching one of my fellow club members kill it on his Helix at 36mph. The turns just look so sharp and effortless. I ran more 32's @34mph than ever last year on the XT and finally ran it in a tourney...but i am yet to get past 4 ball at 35 off. I know that it's mostly "the skier" and not the ski....but I also feel like certain ski's can be a better fit for different styles. Am I crazy for wanting this ski?? Any advice??
    bogboyjmvana1
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    edited March 2015
    @jbwann I can not make that call for you. I think the H2 is a better ski than the H1 so.... the more I ride the H2 the more I like it.

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  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 4,856 Mega Baller
    @jbwann we are about the same level so take my thoughts for what they are. Running mid 35 you definitely don't have too much ski in the XT. That said I do believe there are skis that fit skiers better. I struggled with my ski last year after getting rid of my Goode Mid (the only ski I have still ever run 35 on) in a fit of winter boredom and getting a Nano 1 which I was never fully comfortable on. I skied on a Helix for a while and went back to the N1. At the end of the day I think the Mid was a better match for me than the N1 or the Helix.

    Regarding -35 it takes a lot longer to get comfortable and run -35 than it did to run -32. I have run 4 @35 a lot including in tournaments gotten to 5 ball 6-8 times and run it once and not in a tournament. I think to get through 35 you need to reach the point where you run 32 pretty much every time and run it clean then you will start to get further down the line at 35.

    None of this means you shouldn't try a H2. I love trying new stuff. I would say if you do get an H2 don't get rid of your XT.
    Mark Shaffer
    jbwannGloersenrockdog
  • drewski32drewski32 Posts: 203 Baller
    @Chef23 I skied on a N1 for about a month and always felt behind on it. I was running around the same buoy count, but couldn't progress, so I went back to my fusion. I tried the helix just for the heck of it last july and it blew my socks off. Within two weeks I picked up 6 full buoys and started running midway into 35
  • jbwannjbwann Posts: 39 Baller
    @Steven Haines I laughed at that response it's as if you know me ha ha ha. @Horton thanks for the input on that. I've been wondering what your "everyday" ski is but really appreciate all the reviews you do here. I can't imagine changing ski's that often!! @Chef23 thank you for the input. You are right I really need to clean up my 32's. Working on better (earlier?) edge change and "Staying on the handle" this spring. OH and opening up on my offside turns. Heck I need to open up better on my ON side. @drewski32 is who i was referring to in my first post. Kid can ski! But right now he's supposed to be IN SCHOOL! On ball of spray at school...can you believe that??
    phauswirth
  • jayskijayski Posts: 520 Crazy Baller
    @Horton so out of curiosity what basis do you state "I think the H2 is a better ski than the H1" when in your previous H2 first impressions post you stated "I never rode the H1"...
    kstateskierozski
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 4,856 Mega Baller
    @drewski32 I could never get the Helix to turn on my offside the way I wanted it to. It felt good up until 32 off then it didn't behave like I wanted it to. On the N1 my 22s and 28s felt a little sketchy sometimes but 32 was much better. I skied the N1 for a month and then got on the Helix for about 6 weeks and never consistently ran 32. I went back to the N1 and started running 32 more regularly.

    I had a bad year last year with some health issues though so I never quite got into the season the way I wanted to.

    This year I am thinking about trying a Vapor although the H2 sounds interesting.
    Mark Shaffer
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    edited March 2015
    @jayski I watched a number of skiers on the H1. Tried to help set one up.

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  • jayskijayski Posts: 520 Crazy Baller
    @Horton and all these skiers are now skiing better on the H2?
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    edited March 2015
    @jayski just my opinion. I did not love what I saw when other people rode last years ski. I'm at the very beginning of my review process but I think the H2 is probably very good.

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  • drewski32drewski32 Posts: 203 Baller
    edited March 2015
    @Horton what did you not like? What about the H2 would fix it? Just curious
  • bishop8950bishop8950 Posts: 877 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    When I rode the original Helix I immediately noticed it was fast for a D3. Much less work side to side coming from a Quest, which I liked. I ran within a buoy of my PB after a few sets but I found I was more consistent on my Quest. I felt I had to be more dialed in with my skiing to ride the Helix effectively and I stayed with the Quest as a better ski for me.

    The H2 is a significant upgrade from the Helix. The thing I notice most is that the bevels are slightly softer than the Helix but still sharper than the Quest. This makes the ski more user friendly in the turn than its predecessor. The speed remains as well. Both side to side and back to the handle from the apex of the turn - which I like. I was skiing well on a 67" early this spring until Crawford let someone else ride it and they bought it. I have another coming soon.

    I love my Quest 45 and it would be hard to get me on another ski. I like deep riding carving skis and don't care if they are "slower". This said, the H2 had me thinking that maybe a ski that was faster and still cranks turns would be a better package. I bet I stay on a Quest 45 but I will be taking plenty of rides on the H2 before that decision is final.

    I would bet that there will be some skiers that did not like the Helix and will like the H2. I would also bet that most people that like the Helix will really like the H2. The tougher question is H2 vs Quest 45. Keep you posted on that one.

    Lastly, if there is any question, just demo. D3 and other companies give you a chance to ride before you buy. No amount of forum text can inform you if you are going to like a ski. Plus, its fun to ride different skis!
    santangelo
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    What @bishop8950 said matches my understanding

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  • drewski32drewski32 Posts: 203 Baller
    @Horton so basically you thought the original Helix looked quirky and difficult to manage? That would be undertandable for many skiers. Personally I don't mind it
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    edited April 2015
    @drewski32 There are a number of skis on the market that I find require more precise weight distribution at off side apex when the rope gets short. To me the H1 looked this way. It looked like with just the right inputs and settings it did good things but with slightly wrong inputs or settings it was less friendly.

    I am not saying it was a bad ski - maybe 1/2 of the high end skis on the market are this way. I like a ski with a bigger sweet spot at the ball. Of course more sweet spot comes with compromise somewhere else.

    Fast and forgiving often require different design features. So far the H2 seems to be a very good balance. Since I am just starting to run 35s and not even thinking about 38 yet it is very premature to pass judgment on this ski.

    Gimmie a few weeks. Later this week and this weekend I am tweaking the fin settings.

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    drewski32
  • Stathis VentourisStathis Ventouris Posts: 75 Baller
    chef23 the MID was the best ski I have ever had and when it broke and hade to replace it with N1 I really struggled and never was as consistent as with the MID and also my buycount fell. Last September I got an XTM and in my opinion is even better than the original. In your shoes I would definitely try an XTM.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    I took rides # 7 and 8 last night. I will say that this ski is not mega sensitive to fin settings. I tried two radical changes from stock last night and neither was terrible. Neither setting was very good but it is impressive that I could go that far off the map and the ski still behaved. Tomorrow back to semi stock-ish settings.

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  • schroedschroed Posts: 142 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    @Horton - What wing angle are you using? I just increased my a bit to 8 degrees and the ski felt even better. I heard some others are running even more with this ski.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    @schroed I've been using 7. I will try some more

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  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    I got a visit from some D3 EVPs to day*. They suggested that I move my bindings back a little. Holy Sheep Dip! Now I see what this ski is all about. Yea it is good. Another weekend or so and I will need to shorting another loop.

    *when @bishop8950 goes through the gates is really does look like he could cartwheel at any time

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  • jbwannjbwann Posts: 39 Baller
    @Horton On my Nano one xt at 32 off....when i'm skiing bad...if i dont nail 1 ball and get a good stack going into 2 (i'm rff), and sometimes even if my 1 ball is pretty good...my 2 ball TURN can be just absolutely awful. It's as if I'm on the ski too much. my instinct is to try to turn the ski myself since it's my strong side turn. I go to turn the ski and do some silly hip move and i'm basically dead because nothing happened. my guess is that i'm pulling too long into 2 but geez it seems like i should be able to turn ANYTHING at 2. This is one of the several reasons i'm considering trying the new D3H2. Any thoughts on that?? I know it's my lack of technique but it sure would be nice to jack 2 ball and get back into the pass. it angersssss me.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    @jbwann Gosh. I think the final review of the H2 is going to say it is forgiving, fast and extremely well balanced. On the other hand I am NOT at the end of the review yet and have not yet really shortened the rope as far as I can yet. Until I get to the end of the review it hard to really give a straight answer.

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  • NandoNando Posts: 347 Solid Baller
    So, Horton, where are you now relative to the factory settings? A micro-just move back with the bindings, or bigger? Still using the "special" fin settings?
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    edited April 2015
    @Nando I am very close what guess is stock. My bindings were too far forward. Way better a tick back from where I was.

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  • skibrainskibrain Posts: 865 Crazy Baller
    Not to hijack but since there is some H1/H2 reference. H1 is better for me (Will Bush, Jayski counsel, Thx) with bindings back. And it works best for me, no let me rephrase that. It is particularly responsive to specific body position with some front knee bend in the pre-turn that gets weight on the tip earlier. Result is a smoother finish.
  • Stevie BoyStevie Boy Posts: 1,487 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @ Horton, when skiing the H2 would you in any way, describe the way it feels, similar to a mid ride ?
    I was looking at the weight range for each size of ski, which backs up some of the conversation, I had with the D3 Guy's at the worlds last year or though not categorized as a mid ride by dimensions, I was told it maybe a good alternative, because of the way the ski rides.

    "How Nice Is It, When You Feel The Boat Release You ”

  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    @Stevie Boy I have never spent a lot of time on a Mid and would like to. My educated guess is that they are not a lot alike. I think the H2 is faster, makes more space and makes more arcing turns.

    The Mid is a very successful design => I think it is really an apples and oranges kind of thing. If you already have a Mid and want to try an H2 call D3. They will take the ski back if you do not like it. (check D3 web site for details)

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  • MickeyThompsonMickeyThompson Posts: 103 Baller
    @Horton, hows it going with the H2?
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