As a former collegiate ski racer, I feel that the comparison is very weak at best. I've been a hardcore skier since the 1967, and a hardcore biker since 1972, so have directly experienced the 'modern' transition in equipment. My first pair of skis were solid wood with screw in metal edges and lace up, ankle high, leather boots with bear trap cable bindings. This I think would be the penny farthing of the ski world. It wasn't until the 70's with the introduction of release bindings and plastic boots, that ski technology took any significant step forward from the original skiers in Norway probably hundreds of years ago. While bikes of the 50's were highly refined machines, really not much different from todays, ski equipment of the 50's was pretty primitive. So while the bike in it's modern form has had lets say 100 years of evolution, the ski world has really had at best half of that. While it is fun to get out on the old boards now and then (and for me, old is early '90's), you couldn't pay me to put on a pair of mid-70's Lange Banshee's. And, having experienced 2 knee reconstructions, I would never even think about clipping into a pair of mid-70's bindings.
If anything, you could make the argument that older bikes (30's through the 90's) are more comfortable and safer, in that new hyper-specialized race bikes don't handle rough pavement as well, and the new superlight carbon fiber frames and parts are more likely to fail catastrophically.
I compare modern skis with modern, full suspension mountain bikes. Full suspension allows people with less skills to easily handle more difficult terrain than they could with a fully rigid or front suspended bike only. Same with modern, short, shaped skis compared to the old, long, skinnies. And as always, just my opinion.
John Wood Red Lodge, MT
On Wed, Mar 12, 2008 at 9:22 PM, dan kasha <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> I have been meaning to ask this question for a long
> time. I have a few vintage bikes that I really like
> riding. I also have many sets of vintage skis and
> bindings that I also enjoy using. The question to the
> list is this. What makes bikes so desired, but other
> sports less so?
> An old Marker Simplex releasing toe I think is as
> interesting as an old campy record derailleur. The
> feel of an old ski is much like an old bike. Not
> likely to win the TdF, but can be a hoot to ski and
> can keep up with the best - it is about the skier as
> much or more than the ski, just as with the bikes.
> But bike stuff really has a following and a
> desireability. But other sports, beautiful NOS
> equipment sometimes goes unsold. Why? Is it the age
> of the sport, is it the large diversity of components?
> Is it the world wide access to the sport? Oh, yeah,
> safety. But an old bike has issues too, and those old
> bindings, some of them, were great.
> Other sports that don't get much interest must be out
> there too.
> Anyway, just been wondering, and I hope this is not a
> stretch of the subject.
> Dan Kasha
> Seattle Wa
> PS Last night was a great night skiing on old Olin
> Mark IV's with Look 77 bindings and straps.
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