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Suggestions on Ski Purchase (6'4" mid-forties male getting back into slalom after 25 year break)

tobornetoborne Posts: 5 New Baller
Did a huge amount of slalom skiing in the 80's during the summer as a teen as we lived on the water... 30 years later have now bought bow rider for our family and want to get back into slalom skiing. I'm 6'3 male around 215 lbs. Any suggestions on ski? Just want for recreational open water, no slalom course. Just want something I can do decent smooth cuts with. Way back skied on Connelly Elite and Jobe Open Class, but way to small to get my 215 lbs out of water on now. Perhaps my 160 lb son?

Anyways, suggestions?


  • TallSkinnyGuyTallSkinnyGuy Posts: 543 Crazy Baller
    I'm like you in that I am mid-40s, did a lot of open-water slalom skiing in the '80s, took a long hiatus and got back into it about three years ago. I started with a Connelly V and really liked it but got lured into going to a high end ski, which I ultimately regretted. I am now back to a mid-level ski and this is what I would also recommend for you. A mid-level ski with a PU core and all fiberglass layup or fiberglass/carbon mix will give you a nice smooth ride for open water and have plenty of performance for those days when you are feeling in the groove.

    Skis to consider would be Connelly V, Radar Senate Alloy, HO TX, O'brien Synchro. Your size probably puts you on a 69" for all these skis, but you can check the size charts for each.
  • tobornetoborne Posts: 5 New Baller
    Thanks so much for the info. Will check them out. Was thinking as well that a 69" will probably be my size for my weight.

    Anyways, appreciate the feedback and will check them out.

  • aupatkingaupatking Posts: 1,447 Mega Baller
    same story here, but mid nineties and mid thirties. I'm into the course in the -22 @34 and -32 @ 32 area, and I've got to say, the HO CX and the Radar Senate are phenomenal open water skis, as well as good course skis. I rode a 67 Graphite Senate for the first time ever today and, once you figure out what that ski is asking for, it's a fire breather. I actually skied it a little too long, a little too tired and overturned the crap out of my offside. I got ready for the hit and eventual OTF catapult, and it never came. I think I looked dumb for expecting it.
    The TX is a great ski too, but if you're an experienced skier, with an aggressive bone in your body, of the CX vs TX, I'd go CX. Not a knock on performance, but if you get the TX, and get good again, you're just gonna end up buying the CX too.
    Of everything I've ridden, I'd agree 100% with @TallSkinnyGuy Alloy or Graphite Senate would be my first choice. Haven't ridden the Connelly or O'Brien though.
  • Orlando76Orlando76 Posts: 1,191 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    The Senate is an easy, forgiving ski but I wouldn't recommend the Alloy, bump up to the Graphite.
  • KRoundyKRoundy Posts: 390 Crazy Baller
    What did you ski back in the 80's? I have a VERY similar story to yours. Skied a lot, did some course work back in the 80's and then kids and life got in the way. Back then I found out that high-end water skis suited me the best, even if I wasn't a pro. When I got back into skiing in the last two years I at first skied on my trusty old Kidder. But I was heavier and was drowning the ski. So I got a larger ski and found out just how far water skis had come. I got a Radar Senate Lithium and am VERY happy with the purchase. I have to be ready for that ski because it wants to fly, but once I did a few passes I found that I love it. Very happy with the Senate. I'd also recommend you at least get a Graphite if you were used to high-end skis in the 80's. It is so fun to lean in hard and fly across the wakes. The ski is stable and very confidence-inspiring. And if you really get back into skiing it can run the course. There is a video of Horton running a Senate through the course on this site somewhere.
  • LovellLovell Posts: 101 Baller
    I'm 41 and returned to skiing this year. Best decision ever. My practice average (hope to ski tourneys next year) is about 3 at -32 at 34 mph.
    one piece of advice that I found helpful was don't change ski brands. I grew up skiing Kidders when I was young and tried the Radars early this year and found that I was much more comfortable on skis that were from the Kidder/d3 mold.
  • Bill22Bill22 Posts: 1,682 Mega Baller
    @Orlando76 for someone who freeskiing are doesn't chase buoys, you would say don't get the Alloy?
  • Orlando76Orlando76 Posts: 1,191 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @Bill22 Reading comprehension issues on my part. I guess strictly free skiing Alloy will be great but if budget allows, step up to Graphite just in case you get bit and start chasing buoys.
  • tobornetoborne Posts: 5 New Baller
    Thanks everyone. Sounds like the Senate might be the one to look at for me. Will check out and see if I can find any online deals. Cheers.
  • MattPMattP Posts: 6,091 Mega Baller
    edited November 2015
    @toborne check out they have some sales going today. might also have what you are looking for. Both are sponsors of the site!
  • sunnydaysmnsunnydaysmn Posts: 40 Baller
    It is amazing how far the skis have come over the years, shapes,materials, sizes..rocker & bevel designs..
    Lots of good ones out there.. I have always looked for stability & ease of turning in a ski..
  • gsm_petergsm_peter Posts: 785 Crazy Baller
    Modern bindings also bring a lot of benefits.
    I started on Vectors and have just steped up to Profiles.
    I really like Radar bindings.
    Life is too short not to enjoy every day!
  • Jeff_70Jeff_70 Posts: 24 Baller
    Not to hijack your post but I am looking at skis too. Well sounds just like my story I was trying to post, then puter said not. Mid 40's, 190 lbs getting ready for the new boat. But I am in better shape now then I was 10 years ago, healthy eating and the gym do wonders for your health. I started on an O'Brien Team Comp, skied some buoys, saved my lawn money and bought my own ski, a Kidder Redline (1985), loved that ski, but I sold it a long time ago, too heavy for it now anyway. I can still ski the Team Comp as it was to big for me back then, my mom found it at a garage sale and surprised me with it.
    The main thing I want in a ski is for the ski to carry speed threw the turn, a ski that buries too deep builds too much slack and that stuff hurts now that I am 45. Have been looking at the newer Kidder stuff, HOLY **** skis are expensive!!!! I had read many of yalls post and have been searching for some of the above suggested skis. Have been looking at the Senate and some of the Connelly stuff, what was the last year they made the F1, or do they still make it?
  • Fast351Fast351 Posts: 207 Baller
    If you're not right on the ragged edge of performance, you could do a lot worse than buying a couple model year old ski. I bought my Radar Senate that was last years model for a ridiculous discount. I think it was about 1/2 of MSRP. We're maybe getting a little late in the season, but keep your eyes on Ebay and the like for smokin' deals.
    Mike van Meeteren
  • chris55chris55 Posts: 362 Crazy Baller
    @Jeff_70 you should go to and you will find what you need at a very good price. Then you need to tell if you ski at 30mph, 32mph, 34mph or even 36mph in order to get the best help you need.
  • Jeff_70Jeff_70 Posts: 24 Baller
    edited December 2015
    Back when I was young I skied @34, I now ski around 30-32, but would not be opposed to going back to 34 if the water is perfect.

    Do like this ski but do not know much about it.
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