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How tough will skiing in tournaments be if my practice boat has Perfect Pass with no add-ons

swbcaswbca Posts: 124 Baller
edited December 2020 in Technique & Theory
Just bought a 2004 ProStar with Perfect Pass . . I Probably won't afford to add Stargazer with Zbox right away.

Skier weight 175lbs Practice 38off @ 30mph (M9)

If Perfect Pass is calibrated right on the practice boat, how difficult will it be to ski behind Zero Off ?
Does the Stargazer with Zbox do enough or is a Zero-Off upgrade needed ?


  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 3,123 Mega Baller
    It will be different. PerfectPass always seemed quite soft to me when I went back and forth. To better approximate Zero Off, you could crank up the Kx and Px settings to be a bit more responsive (a.k.a harsh). Using a rope switch could help improve responsiveness as well.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • swbcaswbca Posts: 124 Baller
    @MISkier When you say "quite soft" does that mean it would accelerate to compensate when you changes edges off the wake ?
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 3,123 Mega Baller
    Actually, I meant that I could pull the boat speed down and then it felt like it wasn't quite there for me quick enough (and/or strong enough) off the buoy.

    It's been a long time, but I think we were using something like kx 80 and px 15 on version 6.0xy. On the initial versions of StarGazer, probably Kx ++. I am not sure what would be used on StarGazer after about 7.05. With Zbox add ons, of course, the ZO emulation is already available.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • Mike GileMike Gile Posts: 372 Crazy Baller
    Perfect pass = personal best.
    I agree with @Horton. If you are just getting into course skiing you probably won't notice too much. I do most of my skiing behind a PP boat and don't have a problem adapting to the Zero Off in tournaments.
  • PatMPatM Posts: 788 Crazy Baller
    Kx+ and add 10lbs to your weight for settings.
  • WishWish Posts: 8,198 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    You could try this. It feels much closer. No upgrades needed. So 1mph faster then you ski a ZO boat.

    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • jcampjcamp Posts: 929 Mega Baller
    I've found that Stargazer with Zbox is close enough for me. I can back and forth between it and Zero Off and not really have any problems with it. Same with my ski partners.
  • lpskierlpskier Posts: 3,067 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    Also try Px +10. And plus 1 for site familiarization.
    John Wilkins- Si non pro sanguine quem ludus ne. #iskiconnelly
  • Jody_SealJody_Seal Posts: 3,164 Mega Baller
    Just put it practice mode and ski a half a mile an hour faster! Firms things up like zo!!
    Hobby Boats can be expensive when the hobbyist is limited on their own skill and expertise.

  • hackerhacker Posts: 65 Baller
    to glom on a bit to what @Horton was saying... most of my course skiing is done behind an older 196, PP, no z-box. Even though I always want more, I'm generally happy any time I get beyond 2 ball at 32off. Most often my tournament scores are within a buoy or 2, of what I do in practice. Often times I'll ski better at a tournament than I did during the week skiing behind PP.
    Jim Ecker - Founder and President of the Hacker's club
  • lazznlazzn Posts: 50 Baller
    To echo what Jody mentioned, some of the older higher end skiers I pull (on their boats of course) will usually have a pretty significant RPM add bump that they've played with to get the feeling they want. Something to feel out, but if PP is running (slightly) hot times in practice the ZO will probably not feel like as much of a kick as some people describe. I myself at slower speeds really only notice the difference between courses with magnets and without magnets in classic PP. Otherwise it's much harder to tell
    Wisconsin Waterski Team
  • chrislandychrislandy Posts: 180 Solid Baller
    When I added it this year, I was advised by PerfectPass not to bother adding the zbox until the skier is running shortenings, and even then only once they get down the line quite a bit. But we were discussing towing <120lb kids training rather than 180lb+ adult kids like me.

    my understanding is you can make ZO mimic PP by using a later setting and a softer reaction by setting it to C2 or C3, so you can make tournaments feel more like training, but I'm sure someone will correct me if I've go the wrong end of the stick.
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 3,123 Mega Baller
    @chrislandy, I think the softer, later setting you are looking for is A1.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • swbcaswbca Posts: 124 Baller
    edited December 2020
    I posted this question . . several comments talked about skier performance and weight being a variable in PP suitability for practice. . 175lbs, SKIING PRACTICE at 38 off @ 30mph (men9)
  • MISkierMISkier Posts: 3,123 Mega Baller
    @swbca, now that you reminded me of your parameters, training with PerfectPass might actually help you a little. I say this because you may be working hard to learn how to control yourself at the new slower speed for you. And, it does seem to be more of a challenge at that short length to work with a slower speed. But, when you ski ZO at that same speed in a tournament, you may be rewarded with that little extra boost. That could make attempting the short line at the slow speed a bit easier than practice. That is, you might suddenly feel more efficient and earlier at the buoy.

    It will be interesting to hear how you progress through this adjustment and your eventual results.
    The worst slalom equipment I own is between my ears.
  • scokescoke Posts: 704 Crazy Baller
    huh, I was going to go the other way:
    1) Don't be frustrated when you are minus 6 buoys when you ski tournaments or behind zero off. Go ahead and chalk up [email protected] as your score if you're training behind perfect pass.
    2) Skiing behind perfect pass is like playing tic-tac-toe while skiing behind zero off is like playing chess.
    3) if you're serious about tournament skiing, invest in a zero off boat. If not, you'll be wasting a year of skiing then asking yourself "why didn't I do that earlier?"

    But since there are guys in this thread who run PB's after skiing behind PP, saying train behind PP and ZO will be easier due to your speed, none of my theories from above hold true and are all incorrect. So disregard them!

    We'll really see about 8 weeks into the tournament season though.
  • WishWish Posts: 8,198 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited December 2020
    I’ll add this to the idea of upping your PP spread 1/2-1mph. If you have any opportunity to ski ZO outside of a it. And don’t listen to any suggestions of settings for ZO. Ski them all. It may take several sets but you will land on one that fits your style. Don’t try to emulate PP with a ZO setting. Once you have that, ZO may even become an advantage. And yes, I train behind PP. I do feel a difference. I have found a setting that works for my style and my tournament scores have matched practice for the most part. Nerves plague the tournament scene for me far more then the cruise control change.
    >>> 11.25..a different kettle of fish. <<<
  • HortonHorton Posts: 30,191 Administrator
    it really matters how much you load the rope. if you are the light on the rope you will feel almost no difference- if you are heavy on the rope you will feel a huge difference. at your weight and boat speed I'm curious what you're going to feel.

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  • RichardDoaneRichardDoane Posts: 4,537 Mega Baller
    it's a huge difference between ZO and PP, let's not sugar coat it. Get a little late in the course, and start to scramble, and ZO will punish you for bad behavior just like the nuns used to do in Catholic School
    BallOfSpray Pacific Northwest Vice President of Event Management, aka "Zappy"
  • JackQJackQ Posts: 396 Open or Level 9 Skier
    I practiced behind PP (in salt water to boot) for over three years while skiing in tournaments with ZO at a fairly high level (frequently running [email protected] 34 mph) at the time weighing in the upper 180s. If you let it bother you it will, if you just ski it will be OK. The biggest difference I felt was in a tailwind where ZO does a much better job than PP in not “running” away from you.
  • swbcaswbca Posts: 124 Baller
    @teammalibu is a good dealer for adding or upgrading Perfect Pass. I ordered the PP Upgrade, StarGazer and Gauge from him. Save a $$ and it was drop shipped from the manufacturer in 3 days. Installing it my 2004 ProStar-TT when the ice goes out. Just send a BOS message to @teammalibu with questions or for a quote.
  • VONMANVONMAN Posts: 233 Crazy Baller
    Have you experienced Zero-off? If not you are going to love it. B)
    Ernie Schlager

    A Good One Ball Gives You Six
  • ozskiozski Posts: 1,714
    @Horton nailed it. The bigger you are the shorter the line you ski the more you feel in both systems, PP and ZO.
    'Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.'' 2021 MC As soon as it lands Ski - KD Platinum

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