Taking Advantage of the Radar Vapor’s Unique Skill Set

SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
Fast skis are wonderful in the way they sprint across the course for a nice, early approach to the next ball. But there are usually two tradeoffs for this easy acceleration. Fast skis are more likely to arrive at the next ball with too much speed riding precariously high in the water, and their flat rocker profiles require a lot of smear to achieve tight turns. High-speed, sliding turns are simply less reliable than the turns of slower, deeper riding designs that have more rocker.



Enter the 2018 Radar Vapor, the mullet of slalom skis. And by “mullet” I don’t mean “making a disturbing fashion comeback;” I mean all business in the front and party in the back. While accelerating, most of the any ski’s tip is out of the water, so from the boots back, the Vapor’s design delivers fabulous acceleration. Then when the front of the ski gets driven into the water through the pre-turn and turn, the Vapor’s tip goes to work in a way that is somewhat unique among current water skis—if the skier knows how to use it.

At rest, the new Vapor has significantly more tip rocker (upward bend) than the previous model. So the more the skier loads the tip in the pre-turn, the more braking effect there is. This ski has a huge set of brakes if the skier has the skills to approach the ball with the water breaking more than eight inches ahead of the front boot.

Then as the skier drops into their maximum lean around the ball, 2 G’s of centrifugal force load more rocker into the Vapor’s soft tip (one of the softest tips ever delivered on a modern ski), so less smear is required to deliver spectacularly tight turns. Here again, the water-break needs to be about eight inches or more ahead of the front boot to deliver this mind-bending turning power.

Admittedly, using the Vapor’s tip this aggressively takes a fair amount of talent, power and courage, but it’s there for the taking for intermediate to advanced skiers who understand how to work it.

This all sounds wonderful, but what about the rest of us mere mortals who are still sneaking up on the tip; a ski capable of delivering such high levels of tip pressure can be skill testing. Here again, this unique design delivers. So long as the skier isn’t stuffing too much tip into the water, the Vapor is “merely” a fast, great turning ski with the potential for even higher performance as technique progresses.

Knowledge is the key to getting the most out of this ski—regardless of skiing ability. I you understand how the 2018 Vapor’s tip works, you can strive to tailor its performance to your current needs. Want a quick, nimble ski that doesn’t require a ton of effort? Ride your Vapor with consistent balance over your front foot and it will deliver in spades. Need a big set of brakes and crazy-tight turns for those last few colors on your rope? Just move further forward on this ski to fully unleash the beast.

SkiJay
www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
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Comments

  • Mateo_VargasMateo_Vargas Posts: 829 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    So what are the @SkiJay recommended numbers for the ‘18 Vapor?
    Success is failure that just hasn't happened yet
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    @Mateo Vargas
    I do video analysis for a wide range of skiers and not surprisingly, their personalized setups fall into a range, not a single set of numbers. The following numbers are a generalization of that range.

    If the skier doesn't habitually use a lot of tip or is not comfortable with a lot of tip pressure:
    • Wg: 9°
    • Bf: ⅛" back from stock
    • FD: 2.450
    • FL: 6.955
    • DFT: .010 longer than stock
    If the skier likes using a lot of tip:
    • Wg: 9°
    • Bf: ⅛" forward of stock
    • FD: 2.450
    • FL: 6.960
    • DFT: .025 longer than stock
    The Stock numbers can currently be fount at: Radar Factory Specs

    FWIW, Radar's current factory specs are an excellent one-size-fits-most compromise falling somewhat mid-range.
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
  • Bruce_ButterfieldBruce_Butterfield Posts: 1,444 Mega Baller
    @SkiJay great analysis. If you really want to make it work, add a cg fin.
    I'm Ancient. WTH do I know?
    Wish
  • oldjeepoldjeep Posts: 3,355 Mega Baller
    Ok, so what happened to the vent windows? Now my 2017 just looks silly
    Chuck P
    Not a mechanic but I play one at home
  • C5QuestC5Quest Posts: 225 Baller
    What size ski are those numbers for?
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    @C5Quest
    FD and FL is the same for all Vapors, so the FL numbers I've listed are also for all sizes.
    DFT and binding settings changes from ski to ski, so I've listed how much to add or subtract from those numbers. I also included a link to the stock numbers for your convenience.
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
    JordanballsohardBill22
  • ballsohardballsohard Posts: 200 Baller
    I have the 66" 2018 Vapor and I feel the same way about the ski, I'm at 6.965 2.455 .765. with the boots at 30.00. How much should I try moving my DFT? @SkiJay
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    @ballsohard
    I don't know what you are trying to achieve with a DFT move.
    Your fin numbers are definitely in the ball park, but your bindings may be too far forward. Binding location isn't about keeping the tip down, it's mostly about adjusting the radius of your turns by changing how much ski there is behind your feet. Moving forward increases how much ski you have behind you which reduces smear and increases turn radius. 29¾" is about as far forward as I'd go on your 66" Vapor.
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
    ballsohardjipster43
  • JASJAS Posts: 242 Solid Baller
    @skijay . Assuming nominal body position and stock position reflex with RTP. What would be first ski adjustment to improve offside tip engagement. Onside seems dialed. Currently running stock short/deep settings
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    @JAS
    Move the fins leading edge (LE) forward by either moving the whole fin with DFT if you also want more smear, or by increasing FL if you want less smear (cause this also increases fin area.
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
  • ballsohardballsohard Posts: 200 Baller
    @SkiJay I remausered and it turns out that I'm at 29 3/4
    SkiJay
  • tjmtjm Posts: 315 Baller
    @ballsohard Brooks W gave me these numbers for my 66. Likening them a lot.
    .760
    2.505
    6.865
    9
    29.5
    ballsohard
  • tjmtjm Posts: 315 Baller
    C
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    @tjm
    You bring up a good point about the new Vapor. Where the previous model tended to favor long/shallow setups, the new ski is more indifferent between long/shallow and short/deep. And as short/deep setups go, the one you've listed from Brooks is a good example falling into the aggressive side of the range. So without knowing how you ski, do you occasionally find the ski's tip bites harder than you'd like?
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
  • tjmtjm Posts: 315 Baller
    edited July 2018
    @SkiJay No, I find it very consistent on both sides. Full disclosure I am on a Lithium as opposed to a pro build, and at 65 I ski at 32+mph. I found the long and shallow to be a lot of work. Explaining it to Brooks he suggested the above saying it should "free it up". For me it's much better.
    SkiJay
  • LobonatorLobonator Posts: 59 Baller
    @tjm I just ordered a lithium after demoing the probuild a few times. How are you finding the lithium so far?
  • tjmtjm Posts: 315 Baller
    edited July 2018
    @Lobonator I like it. To be honest I meant to order the pro but had a brain crash when I placed the order. When I got it I realized the goof but went with it anyways. I had a 2016 lithium so I guess “lithium” was on my mind.
    Funny though, and to @SkiJay observation, on the 2016 I was long and shallow, the deep short just didn’t work for me. The 2018 was the opposite for me.
  • LobonatorLobonator Posts: 59 Baller
    @tjm awesome! Do you still find the lithium quick crossing the wakes? How's it int he turn? Haven't heard too much about the 2018 lithium compared to the pro.
  • tjmtjm Posts: 315 Baller
    edited July 2018
    @lobonator I never rode the pro so can’t compare. The lithium is plenty quick though. It turns great with the settings Brook gave me. The long shallow gave me bus turns that didn’t finish as well.
  • LobonatorLobonator Posts: 59 Baller
    Unreal! @tjm I will get out for a set as soon as my ski comes in this week and let you know if you missed much by getting the lithium!
  • ballsohardballsohard Posts: 200 Baller
    The more that I ski on my 2018 Vapor the more that I realize that it loves speed into the turn especially if you get onto the tip of the ski approaching the turn, The addition of differential fin depth by way of adding two washers beneath the middle fin block screw makes the onside turn insanely effortless and snappy, this makes you early into your offside turn with a good edge change and a tight line.
  • addkerraddkerr Posts: 161 Baller
    @SkiJay

    What stock settings are you using as base line. The Radar site has a short deep and long shallow stock settings?

    Just rode .775, 6.955, 2.45 on a 67. Cant achieve 1/8 forward due to not having a microjust, so its more like at 301/4.

    These settings felt way more stable vs the stock long shallows but this thing is losing angle through the offside pull but with crazy slew offside.

    I must say Iv been riding another ski for the past year and performance has got to the point that I don't want to ski and cant even run 22 at 34mph. Jumped on the pro and straight into running super early at 28 36mph. This thing is super fast but gives good confidence under foot.
  • HortonHorton Posts: 26,978 Administrator
    @SkiJay I have to respectfully disagree about long shallow verses short deep. I spent a ridiculous amount of time trying to make long shallow work on that ski and was never really comfortable. As soon as I switched to short deep I was pretty darn happy.

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    ballsohard
  • JASJAS Posts: 242 Solid Baller
    Where does new Denali come into picture with this ski?
  • HockdogHockdog Posts: 167 Baller
    Agree with @Horton, the short and deep setting woke this ski up, fast behind the boat and pitches you up on the buoy line better.
  • MSMS Posts: 5,105 Mega Baller
    Every skier is differant.
    Shut up and ski
    Than_BoganAndreballsohard
  • HortonHorton Posts: 26,978 Administrator
    @ms that is the first insightful thing you have said in years.

    Support BallOfSpray by supporting the companies that support BallOfSpray

    Barts ★ Connelly ★  DBSkis ★ Goode ★ Hobe Lake ★ HO Syndicate 

    MasterCraft ★ Masterline ★ MOB ★ Performance Ski and Surf ★ Reflex ★ Radar ★ Stokes

    Than_Bogan
  • MSMS Posts: 5,105 Mega Baller
    edited July 2018
    That’s insightful
    Shut up and ski
    Than_Boganandjules
  • jimskijimski Posts: 336 Baller
    @Horton what are your numbers
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,314 Mega Baller
    edited July 2018
    @Horton
    Which ski did you not like the long/shallow on, the 16/17 Vapor or the 2018?
    www.FinWhispering.com ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent

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