Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

12" White Stickers
BallOfSpray $5 Donation
BallOfSpray $10 Donation

Why I've Quit Using a 13" Handle (again)

Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
edited June 2012 in Skis Fins Bindings
Ten years ago I quit using a 13" handle after having a couple of them fold up on me while skiing, been using a 12" ever since. First one was a Straightline, I almost didn't get my hand out of it before it was too late. The 2nd was a replacement for the first one, started to bend on the 4th set of usage, went to the dock and threw it as far as I could...

At the suggestion of the pro coach I've gone to for the past several summers (I'll leave his name out as he's not involved in this) this spring I bought a couple Masterline 13" handles, one radius and one straight. The photo is of the radius handle, which folded up on me during this mornings sets. Bought it mid-April so it hasn't had all that much use. Haven't used the straight one yet, just about afraid to. For now at least I'm back on the 12" ML handles which I've had for years and have never had an issue whatsoever with.

Felt this one folding on me coming off the one ball at 32 off this morning. Had to let go of it just after the boat was really picking me up at the end of the turn, which resulted in a fairly brutal 2 1/2 OTF. Kinda cranked my neck trying to stick the 2nd flip (I didn't stick it...) but no permanent harm and only a slightly stiff neck so I'm good.

Anyone else had any issues with folding handles lately?
Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
[Deleted User]


  • dislanddisland Posts: 1,201 Crazy Baller
    I bent a masterline 13" radius this year but not that bad
    Dave Island- Princeton Lakes
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,865 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Used to bend and break handles as well as ropes with ridiculous regularity when I weighed more, was stronger and skied wrong. Now have not for many years. @Ed Obermeier, please don't think I'm calling you a big strong dude that skis wrong...just relating my experience : )
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
  • liquid dliquid d Posts: 988 Crazy Baller
    They shouldn't break, but for your peace of mind, grab on the ends...outer sides at least. The amount of power needed to bend them goes way way up. At least at that point, you won't be thinking about it. The other idea is to get them made or do it after purchase- put a wood dowel in middle. I'll bet if you contact Russell , he'd be happy to do it for you- real good guy.
  • SkihackSkihack Posts: 448 Baller
    I would've thought the rope would break before the handle. I have broke tons of 64 strand but no 80 strand rope. I have bent some 12" handles but no performer handles (old style). I have learned to be light on the line and haven't broken any since. I wouldn't pull someone who bent handles like that for safety reasons.
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,425 Mega Baller
    I have used ML 13 inch customs for years and haven't bent one ever. ML makes another kind of handle that I got once that has rubber endcaps on it. I bent two of those after two uses. I won't order that type again.
    Jim Ross
  • Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
    @6balls no offense taken. I'm sure I ski all kinds of wrong... I took a small slack hit when this bent but nothing that should have caused this I wouldn't think. I'm 6' 2" and 193 so I'm not all that big (heavy). I admit I'm still trying to figure out this whole light-on-the-line thing but I'm generally reasonably smooth. Doo-doo occurs I guess. Only the 2nd time this has ever happened to me but both times with 13" handles, never with a 12". I really want to stay with a 13", makes it easier to get my shoulders back, but having only been back on a 13" for couple of months before this happened I'm a bit gun shy again.

    ML makes 3 levels of handles, this is/was the mid level ($65 buck handle). Guess I need to spend more money...
    Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
    [Deleted User]
  • Ed_JohnsonEd_Johnson Posts: 1,842
    @Ed Obermeier,

    Last handle I bought was a 13" ML Drew Ross Signature. It is their top of the line, but very Heay Duty, with really nice rubber to grip with. Should last a very long time. Also is anti-roll. I think you would be very safe and very happy with it. Huge selection of diameters available.
    Loving the Reflex Supershell with R Style Rear !!!
  • swc5150swc5150 Posts: 2,014 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    I'm wondering you just need a larger diameter? Like Ed said, ML has a large selection.
    Scott Calderwood
  • SkiJaySkiJay Posts: 2,208 Mega Baller
    edited June 2012
    @swc5150 Randy at MasterLine told me that all of the diameters of their top handles have the same aluminum pipe as the core. The large diameter handles just have thicker rubber on them.
    @Ed_Obermeier The pipe used as the core of their top handles is thicker walled tubing than their less expensive handles. That's why they are heavier ... and stronger. ... Your ski should be your dance partner, not a wrestling opponent
  • GAJ0004GAJ0004 Posts: 1,053 Baller
    I have never had a handle do that. You must have a better grip than I do. If I get a ton of slack in the rope I bail out. A half buoy or quarter buoy is not worth sacrificing your shoulder and ending your season. If there was that kind of torque on the handle I could not hang on. I use a 1.00 diameter handle. I have an old straightline radius, masterline 13''x1.00 traditional, and two straightline traditionals same size. I rotate 4 slalom handles/ropes each day I go out.
    Gary Janzig Streetsboro Ohio, skis at Lake Latonka, Mercer Pennsylvania slalom,trick,kneeboard,barefoot
  • Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
    As I said it was just a small hit, not the ton-o-slack type. I've had both shoulders rebuilt once so believe me, I know when to bail.
    Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
    [Deleted User]
  • Chef23Chef23 Posts: 5,620 Mega Baller
    I don't use the bent ones but I weigh about 215 now and was 240 and never bent a handle. I have been skiing primarily with handles from Brenda at InTow. I agree you might want to think about a different brand and/or a higher end handle.
    Mark Shaffer
  • epyscsepyscs Posts: 73 Baller
    Funnily enough our club has 5 or 6 bent Masterline Monster handles. Some with as little as a few days use on them. Havent heard anything back from Masterline on them yet as I sent them a note via their website.

    This year is the first time I have bent a handle and I never grab the middle. I can ski deep 35off and bent the handle at 32off.
  • slalom frogslalom frog Posts: 103 Baller
    Have never bent my US Gear handle.......
  • jdarwinjdarwin Posts: 1,379 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Odd. 90% of the folks at my record tournaments use Masterline as do 100% of my club members. I've yet to see one fail or bend. I would challenge anyone to put more force on a handle than Ward does at 41-off. I'm not certain if there is a difference in the core of the custom vs. team handles but most everyone I know uses the custom version.
    Joe Darwin
  • A_BA_B Posts: 3,980 Mega Baller
    edited June 2012
    I customized one of the cheaper ones like that and posted a pic out here exactly like that. They sent me one of the premium handles as a replacement.

    It doesn't have as much radius as I like, but better than straight.

    I sure miss the ARS original radius!
  • MattPMattP Posts: 5,973 Mega Baller
    I have never seen one fail or bend. I really only see people using the custom handles. I wonder if they got a bad or cracked batch of titanium.
  • Jim NeelyJim Neely Posts: 291 Baller
    @Ed Obermeier What diameter handle was it?
    68" Vapor
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,425 Mega Baller
    @jdarwin -- I use the custom 1.03 and have never had one bend. I got two of their "cheaper" handles one year and both of them bent in the first day of use. Some might say that I occasionally load the line a little hard, but neither broke from a slack hit. Just progressive energy against the boat into the first wake. Sent them back and ML replaced them, but I don't use those handles. Stick with the custom.
    Jim Ross
  • KillerKiller Posts: 322 Baller
    @MattP The Monster handles are aluminum core AFAIK.

    I didn't even know they made the higher end ones with Titanium, good to know as I just ordered a custom handle through @jdarwin and if its anything like previous masterline products I'm not concerned
    Steven Haines
  • skidawgskidawg Posts: 3,165 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    I've been using masterline for (as long as i can remember) and never had any worries, I even restring and flip them to get an extra year outa them and never had a custom bend or break.
    Mr. Mom is Horton's favorite movie!
  • kstateskierkstateskier Posts: 524 Solid Baller
    Too much muscle Ed! You're a beast!
    Bradley Beach - Lone Rock Ski Club, Missouri
    2004 Malibu Response LXI, 2014 D3 Helix 66"
  • A_BA_B Posts: 3,980 Mega Baller
    edited June 2012
    My customized "cheapie" radius after a couple sets.

    The upgrade has been fine, to clarify.
  • Ed_ObermeierEd_Obermeier Posts: 1,339 Crazy Baller
    @Jim Neely, it was a 1.00" standard issue Monster Radius Team handle.

    @AB that's a CUSTOM top-o-the-line handle? Damn...

    Spoke with Randy at Masterline today. Told him my issue, he offered to replace my bent handle with a Custom handle at no up charge. I offered to pay the difference but he was good with trading out even up. So I guess I'll give a 13" Custom a go (visualize me making the sign of the cross as I say that...). Bend this one, I'm done. I'll be sending the bent one in next day or two.
    Ed Obermeier - owner, EZ-Slalom Course Systems
  • A_BA_B Posts: 3,980 Mega Baller
    Ed, I haven't heard mine even make a whimper yet.
Sign In or Register to comment.