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Occams Razor 162cm 2012-2013

Took out the occams razor in a 162 last week. this ski is kim kardasian of the ski world, beautiful and curvy. no base structure from the factory, so we put a good slalom structure on it with our winterstieger. i had typical eastern conditions on the hill, hard and mix of scratchy ice and groomed surface. i found the bases a little sluggish, but that might have been the wax. the skis balked a bit on the super tight slalom turns, and also on the longer gs turns, but once i found the radius they liked they skied great. super solid edge hold, even at high angles, lots of pop when you load up the skis and un-weight to the next turn, and buttery smooth, fairly stiff flex. not a very versatile ski with one very specific turn radius, but a great ski for the very athletic, hard carver who likes to rip on east coast like surfaces.

By: josgood  Posted: Saturday, January 19, 2013 11:47:02 AM

2012-2013 SkiLogik Occam's Razor

132-76-113 @162cm r=11.5m

Manufacturer Info:

SkiLogik USA
P.O. Box 9480
Breckenridge, CO 80424
Ph: 970-453-8000
Fx: 6970-368-4400
http://www.skilogik.com

Suggested Retail Price (MSRP):

$750 usd

Usage Class:

Frontside Slalom Carving

Rating (with comments):

(1="get me off these things"->10="I have to own a pair")

10 on hardpack, 8 on soft corduroy

Ski Designer:

After years of designing and building skis in the U.S.A, David Mazzarella ("Mazz")  sought to build his own factory in China to his specifications and train his technicians to build his skis with care and artistry, not mass-production.  David moved his family to Hainan Islan where they produce "about 5 pairs a day". Mazz says creating a workshop in China allowed him to create a ski where "price of materials and workmanship" was much, much lower to achieve the quality of ski he wanted to produce for the skiing public.  Using the same quality of materials and labor hours in other countries would have placed the ski above the price point he was trying to meet for his target market.  95% of the wood used for the skis is sustainably harvested. SkiLogik works with the Nature Conservancy to plant one tree in the Atlantic Rainforest of Brazil.  The black locust wood comes from family farmers.

Mazz claims:

"I moved with my wife and kids half way across the globe and set up our own factory so that I could design and produce with the best methods possible. I brought in engineers who shared my vision. We designed machinery that didn’t exist, hired craftspeople with better hands than ours, and taught them how to make great skis. And they taught me a lot. After working for two years to get the production center fully capable, I turned my focus to designing a new line of skis using better materials and more craftsmanship per pair.  Our production facility pays all workers above the market rate to attract and retain a quality team. Our turnover rate is low and new hires are often friends of existing employees. On work days, all employees eat a hearty lunch together provided by our company. After 3 months on the job, all employees receive the following benefits: Health insurance, retirement, unemployment, disability, workers’ compensation, and 90 day maternity leave with 100% pay."

Summary:

["Occam's Razor" is a principle of parsimony, economy, or succinctness that states that among competing hypotheses, the one that makes the fewest assumptions should be selected.(wikipedia). This often means eliminating unecessary elements to produce the core essence of a thing and one should not make more assumptions than the minimum needed. ]

Dave Mazzarella has created a simply elegant frontside carving ski with a purity of purpose: carving exquisite short-radius turns on hardpack with ease. Nothing more, nothing less.  Occam's Razor is an example of a no-comprimise design to allow a wide population of skiers to carve precise, smooth, sweet arcs on hardpack surfaces without being olympian atheletes or technical experts.  SkiLogik's Occam's Razor is not a racing slalom, but a "slalom race carver" meant for sporty carving fun by experts and civilian skiers.  It is not a "Richochet-Rabbit-into-the-weeds-if-you-don't-pay-attention" type of slalom carver, but a refined and elegant ride at a variety of edge angles ranging from mellow to radical. The Razor has a sweet-spot radius turn which is nearly effortless to execute by rolling onto your downhill large toe and uphill pinky toe with a bit of ankle flex (no need to do angular gymnastics from the ankle up unless you want to), and has a secure, composed and "elegant" feel at low, medium or higher speeds.  The only limitation is its narrow waist, which craves hard surfaces and can sink a bit under heavier skiers on soft surfaces, resulting in a perceptable slow-down, but then again, this ski is meant to ride hardpack and lay down slicing arcs, not pound through mixed conditions.  It can make larger and smaller-radius turns than it's sweet-spot, but it really shines when it is on its preferred arc. Pure, elegant, smoothly executed carving with minimal effort in a stunningly attractive wood-inlay package with top-quality materials and construction at a compelling price compared to bigger brand names.  A true bargain for a state-of-the-art carving machine in an impressively gorgeous-looking package.. Spunky and tenaciously grippy enough for hard-core experts, yet friendly enough to raise nearly anyone up a level in their carving skills without stressing them out. One of my favorites.

Technical Ski Data:

Mixed hardwood (proprietary), vertically laminated core, selectively-placed metal components (not full-width, but they appear along some perimiter areas of the ski, perhaps to enhance edging behavior and torsional integrity without interfering with longitudinal flex...another proprietary design with patent pending according to SkiLogik - not indicated in diagram below taken from the SkiLogik website in January, 2013), Black locust hardwood widewalls, proprietary carbon/fiberglass matrix matting, rubber dampening strips, German carbon-infused racing bases, hand-inlaid wood veneer topsheet.

Construction Details From SkiLogik website - January 2013

Bindings and Boots Used:

Tyrolia SP 12 demo bindings (stock - no riser plate) mounted "on-the-line".
Lange Comp Pro 120 boots.

Pre-Skiing Impression:

One of the most attractive and beautiful skis on the market with a stunning hand-inlaid wood veneer topsheet with mother of pearl elements (see photos).  Glossy topsheet coating. Superb fit and finish, with factory stone grind and tune out of the box.  Smooth, rounded hand-flex with moderate rebound and dampening feel.  Unique black locust sidewalls grab your attention.

Test Conditions:

Eastern hardpack (the kind you can bounce a baseball off of), packed powder groomers, ungroomed packed powder with small bumps, 3 inch powder conditions and icy, chunky old surfaces.

Test Results:

The first turn I made with the 162cm Occam's Razor from SkiLogik, I was hooked.  I simply when straight, letting the skis run flat for about 10 meters straight down a moderate slope, then applied a little pressure onto my big toe of the downhill ski and pinky toe of the uphill ski...and I was immediately pulled into a smooth, accelerating arc, automatically urging me to apply pressure from the forebody of the ski down its length to a finishing zing off the tails that felt like butter.  Smooth, silky, zippy and really, really secure along the entire length of the ski's edge in the surface.  I rolled the skis in the opposite direction and the same thing happened with nearly no effort at all.  I stopped and looked back to see two precise, perfect little cuts in the snow.  I immediately began to rattle off multiple short-radius slices in both directions with the skis never leaving the surface, just rolling them back and forth in different radii and running speeds, increasing edge angles as I went until I broke into an ear-to-ear grin laying down arcs in the hardpack, realizing I was creating some crazy angles and lickety-split turns with nearly zero effort - just rolling the skis left and right.

The next set of turns I went into a punchy, rocket-off-the-tails style, and the Razors were quick and zippy, but always controlled.  They did not have the explosive power of some hard-core slalom skis which, if you get caught in the back-seat, would send you into the weeds, but rather the Razors have a deliberate, zingy snap and forward acceleration with quiet, controlled, but definitely high-performance manner.  They felt more like a technical slalom carving ski than a racing slalom (if that makes any sense to anyone).  If you ski some slalom skis vigorously all day, you feel like you've been run through the ringer trying to stay on top of them.  The Occcam's Razor lets you ski vigorously, making the same kinds of turns, but allow you to do it while expending 1/3 to 1/2 the energy. That's impressive.  Don't expect a rowdy ride, but a sweet and tasty authoritative ride.  The Occam's Razor feels like a ski that knows exactly what it wants to do, and it does it really, really well.

If you force these skis to turn under their ideal radius, they will do it, but you loose the feeling of "flow" along the ski, almost like crabbing the wheel of a car too much in a turn, generating oversteer, but rather than having the rear-end swing out like an oversteering car...the Razors sink the edge in and scrub speed a little, always maintaining their arc rather than sliding out in an unbalanced manner like some skis turned too hard.  Hopefully that makes sense to someone out there.  Like Jeremy said in his comments, the ski "balks" at overturning, which to me means it is setting the arc the pilot has chosen, but that arc merely means the momentum is reduced and redirected along the turn direction...which I like the feeling of.  This is by no means a problem, it just shows the ski does not lose composure during excessive turn radii, but obeys the pressure to bite and flex in the chosen direction and intensity, which means it can turn tight enough to slow you down without skidding....and I like that feeling.

If you run larger, GS-like radius turns, the Razors are quiet and really well composed, never feeling nervous (even for an 11m radius ski), but at 162cm in large-radius, high-speed turns, you feel the short length and quickness, and the narrow waist and short length can mean there is a lot of pounds-per-square-inch pressure concentrated in a short, narrow area of contact with the snow, and if the surface is somewhat soft, you feel the waist submerge in the surface a bit at higher speeds, scrubbing your momentum.  Again, a slalom carver is not a GS ski, and if you run such a ski at high speeds, the surface can affect your momentum.  I think this has always been the case, but with everyone getting used to 95-115mm+ skis these days in all kinds of terrain, the underfoot feel of a narrow SL race carver can be forgotten and feel foreign to people if they don't get out on this kind of ski in different surfaces frequently. 

Analogies: (this ski is like...)

A finely honed chef's knife with a curvature designed for carving like butter across nicely baked surfaces.  The more you carve, the more you crave the feel of making the next slice.

Things I Would Change About This Ski:
 
Since Occam's Razor is only available as a 162cm length, the only thing I might change would be to offer a slightly longer size ...perhaps 168cm or 170cm for bigger or heavier skiers.

Short Answer When Someone Asks "What Do You Think About This Ski?":

This is a curvy, slice-like-butter slalom carver that could be considered a reference standard for this class of ski.  It's a specialized tool designed for recreational and athletic short-radius carving, not racing, and could give intermediates a taste of carving they might have difficulty finding in other skis.  It's also one of the most beautiful looking skis I've seen, and at the same price or lower than many big-name brands, it's a bargain.

Advice To People Considering This Ski:

Occam's Razor is for carving the hardpack groomers with slalom turns.  If you want an all-mountain ski, look elsewhere.  If you want to lay down serious carving tracks with minimal effort, this ski is just the ticket.

Self-Description of Skiing Style, Ability, Experience, Preferences:

5' 11", 180 lbs. 53 year-old expert, "old-style" race inspired, "foot steerer" with fairly sensitive edging feel. Loves to hold long arcs with lots of pressure on the downhill ski (you know the type),  but also loves the feel of both skis on-edge leaving tiny railroad track edge tracks.  Loves powder when it's not tracked out. Trees and odd terrain angles are fun.

Other Reviews:

"The edge hold of, for example, the Fischer RC4 SC, with the beauty of an art piece."
"Super poppy energy, a 'slingshot' ski."
"Super lively and fun, but not for the faint of heart."
"AWESOME! (tester's caps) Would be a fun beer league ski."
RealSkiers.com

 

Pics:

 

 
(left to right) SkiLogik Rock Star, Frontside Burner and Occam's Razor

 


Occam's Razor midbody artwork

 
Occam's Razor tip detail. Note the metal layer below the topsheet.


Occam's Razor tip view



Occam's Razor tails with burly tail protector and metal layer below the topsheet


SkiLogik Black Locust Sidewall

 Occam's Razor base view

Occam's Razor Tip Detail

 

By: e.edelstein  Posted: Thursday, January 24, 2013 8:35:31 AM

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