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Slight change the the ski review process

HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
edited May 2016 in Ski Tests
In years past I rode one test ski after another. Each ski for 3 to 5 weeks (20 – 25 rides). 9 times out of 10 I look back on my previous reviews and feel pretty darn good about it. Going forward I am making a change to my methods with the hope that I can make it 10 out of 10.

I now have a “Baseline Ski”. I know this ski in and out - backwards and forwards. I will ride the baseline ski before and after every review cycle and even during the review if needed.

I think the brand, model, size and settings of the baseline ski needs to be confidential. I am not promoting the baseline ski. It is not the MOASS. it is not a current year ski and it is no longer being made. When I go from the baseline ski to a test ski the differences are clearer.

A very short review of the baseline ski would say something like: Fast as bat guano and temperamental at the ball. When I say “fast” I always mean the ski makes a lot of space and width with the least effort. Fast does not mean it feels fast approaching the ball. “Temperamental at the ball” is exactly what it sounds like. It means that if you make technical mistakes such as being on your back foot the ski is going to do bad things at apex.

As always the goal of the reviews is to describe the review ski and what it does more than define one ski as better than another.

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bkreisMattPgsm_peterJordanThan_BoganSkoot1123Bill22ALPJrSkiJayDWskigirlGaryWilkinson
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Comments

  • Ralph LeeRalph Lee Posts: 492
    Is it an A1? We all want to know. When does the T3 get its turn?
  • DeanoskiDeanoski Posts: 723 Crazy Baller
    the blue Vapor the base line ski?
  • dchristmandchristman Posts: 1,040 Mega Baller
    My educated guess would be the Razor would be the baseline ski. RTM ski presumed less likely to change over time and his short review is a good match for his original full review.
    Is it time to ski, yet?
  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,172
    +1 Blue Vapor
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
    ***Robbed out of Hundreds of Panda Worthy Posts***
  • Than_BoganThan_Bogan Posts: 5,993 Mega Baller
    Seems like a prudent idea. Baselines are useful in most forms of testing.

    But it's kind of a bummer to have extra sets in there considering the massive backlog of Probably-Awesome skis to review!
    Nathaniel Bogan -- GUT Padawan
  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,172
    Can we convert this to a poll meant to identify the baseline ski? :)
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
    ***Robbed out of Hundreds of Panda Worthy Posts***
  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
    @Texas6 no

    @Than_Bogan believe it or not it could make things go faster. Sometimes mid review I get lost. The baseline ski offers a fast dose of reality. I rode the Baseline ski yesterday and it substantially clarified my thoughts on the current ski. Now I have to write a darn review : ( the bad part

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  • DaveDDaveD Posts: 665 Crazy Baller
    What? Adding in a little scientific method to the ski reviews? I think the Adam's are having a bad influence on you.
  • Bill22Bill22 Posts: 1,411 Crazy Baller
    Great idea. Too bad we don't get to know the test ski. Monza is my guess.
    In gear. Hit It. Thank You!
  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
    @Bill22 haaa

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  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,172
    Yep, def the blue Vapor
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
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  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
    @Texas6 or the Vogue

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  • WolfeieWolfeie Posts: 165 Baller
    You better paint it!!! You never know who is in the bushes at Ski West Lake number 3
    spying! Are going going to have all your drivers sign confidentially releases. Arvin is
    a very small community
    Brad Wolfe - Ski West Village, Arvin, Ca; Radar Pro Build, SN 200, I can see Ball of Spray headquarters from my lake house.
  • ozskiozski Posts: 1,538
    I used my Helix as a baseline ski through this last summer, it was certainly beneficial to jump back on it from time to time to gauge the performance of the other ski's I tried this year. I learned more about ski behavior, settings and what I needed in a ski in one season than ever before.
    'Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.'' Boat 2005 Nautique 196 6L ZO - Ski: KD Platinum

  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
    @Wolfeie Don't make me come other there and shorten your rope!

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  • scotchipmanscotchipman Posts: 3,943 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    I agree with @Wolfeie if you really don't want people to know, otherwise just tell us.
    - President of the Utah Water Ski Club
    - Owner at Still Water Lake Estates
  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
    I change skis and so often watching through the bushes is not going to help. Move on

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  • DWDW Posts: 1,801 Crazy Baller
    Great move, always good to have a drone to reset the baseline. Even more helpful since you test in variable conditions.
  • Skoot1123Skoot1123 Posts: 1,767 Mega Baller
    Gotta be a Monza. Any guesses on what year? 2006 is my guess.
  • markchilcuttmarkchilcutt Posts: 862 Crazy Baller
    @Horton This should be fun I say baseline ski = MONZA
    Ski it if you can!!!!
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 5,479 Mega Baller
    I am thinking Warp.
    Mark Shaffer
  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
    edited May 2016
    I'm sorry I mentioned it now. Each review is about that one review ski not about the baseline ski or about any other ski. Just trying to share my methods.

    And I suppose if someone from skiwest gets a picture of me riding it or posts about it I will literally ban them from the site.

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  • AdamCordAdamCord Posts: 585 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    @Horton as someone who also tests lots of skis I understand. My baseline is an old Sixam 1. Not the greatest ski by today's standards, and I can run a higher buoy count on plenty of other skis, but it's a known quantity and it won't surprise me. Works great as a baseline.
  • WishWish Posts: 7,227 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited May 2016
    ;) S2. My guess.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • Skoot1123Skoot1123 Posts: 1,767 Mega Baller
    edited May 2016
    @horton - all kidding aside we appreciate your ski reviews. I think a baseline ski is a fantastic idea. I regularly practice a "baseline" methodology in my everyday work. When you are riding and testing so many different ski's it is important to be able to have something to "compare" it to, otherwise ski tests and results can get blurry. (Not insinuating that you do this.)

    For us Ballers - many who have only touched the water a couple times this year - we are ever antsy to get on the water - hence the banter we are posting about the baseline ski. On the other hand we are going to give you a hard time ANYWAY!
  • jbwannjbwann Posts: 43 Baller
    @Horton how many sets does it take you to get pretty comfortable on most of the skis you review? I am wondering if switching from one brand ski to another vs buying the latest and greatest version of your current ski brand is more difficult. Have you ever jumped off of your "baseline" ski to review another ski and had immediate difficulty running an easy pass?? Say 28 off 34mph??
  • HortonHorton Posts: 25,199 Administrator
    edited May 2016
    @jbwann part of what I think makes me good at ski reviews is that I can ride any high end ski to about the same score right away. If I can't run 35 off in the first ride on a new ski the settings are radically wrong or it's not a high in ski.

    You would think if I could do that I could run 38 all the time on a ski i love. Unfortunately 38 has never been a guaranteed pass for me on any ski. Bottom line is I'm better at jumping from ski to ski then I am chasing down that ultimate high score. I sort of wish it was the other way around.

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  • KRoundyKRoundy Posts: 151 Baller
    This is a great idea. The "scientific method" somebody mentioned above is very valid. I have missed the reviews a lot and look forward to their return. Many happy turns @Horton !
  • Ralph LeeRalph Lee Posts: 492
    You got it tuff @Horton
  • ToddLToddL Posts: 2,702 Mega Baller
    I was going to say, Warp, too. But if @Horton is smart, he will have picked a ski that is old-school construction and not break down for a long time. Or maybe he has an endless supply of baseline skis...
    -- The future of skiing depends upon welcoming novice skiers regardless of age to our sport.
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