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Slight change the the ski review process


Horton
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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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@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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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

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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.
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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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@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.
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@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!

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@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??
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@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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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...
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It is fun to read that most of the people are more interested of the baseline ski than the review itself. The great of the review by @Horton is that he is not sponsored by any company so his review should be pretty "honest". And his baseline ski is a good one for him but maybe not so good for anyonelse and that gives credit to his methodology.
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It is actually important to know the reviewer's baseline ski. A lot of important information can be gleaned from the reviewer's skillset and style which is reflected in the baseline ski.

 

So with that said, I will reveal @Horton 's baseline ski: Radar Graviton!

 

Now when can we expect the review of the Quantum and D3 Aria?

 

Eric

 

PS I know his slalom ski baseline isn't a Leeski - even if he copies my graphics (primer white all over).

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@Horton will you go back and ski a few sets on your baseline ski now before getting on your next review ski?

 

The speculation on baseline ski is kind of fun I realize you aren't going to tell us.

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@Chef23 I'm screwing around for a couple of days and then probably on to the next review ski. The first handful of rides on the new ski are usually messy anyway. Once I have a feel for the new ski then I'll return to the Baseline.
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