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View Full Version : Silly question about slalom skiing


209er
08-29-2007, 09:36 PM
Not long ago we bought our first MasterCraft, a 209. We absolutely love it! I grew up learning to waterski (combo ski, knee board and slalom) on I/O's.

A life long dream of owning a MasterCraft, I was anxious to slalom off of it. Problem is, I have a heck of a time getting out of the water (I either drown, get drug under water, etc.).

We have 350 hp MCX engine (plenty of "cuuhones").

What's the deal?!

Do you guys give full throtle, half, what?? Please give me some pointers.

I've gone to waterski.com (magazine) and seen video of beginners and their neck doesn't even get wet, let alone their hair. I don't get it, what am I doing wrong??!!

Make matters worse, I get my wife out of the water within seconds, dry hair!

Feel free to comment, please!!

TNH2oSkier
08-29-2007, 09:37 PM
what size ski, and how much do you weigh?

209er
08-29-2007, 09:40 PM
67, I weigh 188lbs. I lift weights, bike, etc.

dsoby
08-29-2007, 09:43 PM
Keep your knees bent and put most of your weight on your front foot. The most common problem beginners have is trying to stand up too soon which burys the tip of the ski.

SoCalBrew
08-29-2007, 09:44 PM
There are so many reasons why it may be difficult... Usually with a slalom ski, you are going to hit it decently hard... but, not pull your shoulders out. It is kind of to taste. If you go out too slow, you will drag a lot and not get on top of the water quick enough... and have to fight the water too long.

A major factor is your size verses the ski's size. If this is the same ski your wife uses, that may have something to do with it. (assuming she is smaller than you.)

Do you start with both feet in, or have one foot in and the back foot is used like a rudder? Usually, it is easier to get up with one foot in, and use your other to balance you out until you are on top of the water. Then stomp your foot anywhere near the back boot, and when you are good and balanced, then slide your foot under the strap. This is assuming you don't have double high wraps on your ski - in which case you will need to have both feet in, and you will pull hard against the boat... more weight on the front of the ski - and keep the knees bent.


You can try a wider/bigger ski, like a big daddy to make it a little easier to get up.

so many other possibilities... any of these spark anything?

sand2snow22
08-29-2007, 10:14 PM
Have you ever been able to get up on one ski behind another boat? If not, try dropping a ski first. If you have been able to get up on one, without seeing you in person, my guess ist the boat has too much power for you. I have the MCX and we give it full power, unless it's for someone half your size. In order to counteract all the power, lean back more in the beginning. Sounds like you are getting pulled forward and are submarining.

east tx skier
08-30-2007, 12:28 AM
Our mantra for getting up on slalom is arms straight, knees bent, ski tip out of the water, let the boat pull you up.

If you're still having problems, invest in a deep-vee training rope. You put your ski in the vee and it keeps it straight and out of the water while you get up. Best invention for beginner slalom ever.

As for driving, there's no reason to bury the throttle. I nice, steady throttle up to whatever rpm you're ultimately shooting for will do just fine. Opinions vary as to what each person likes though. So when you're doing the pulling, ask the skier. He may like the mayhem-up. If so, oblige.

Bruce
08-30-2007, 12:52 AM
Our mantra for getting up on slalom is arms straight, knees bent, ski tip out of the water, let the boat pull you up.

If you're still having problems, invest in a deep-vee training rope. You put your ski in the vee and it keeps it straight and out of the water while you get up. Best invention for beginner slalom ever.

As for driving, there's no reason to bury the throttle. I nice, steady throttle up to whatever rpm you're ultimately shooting for will do just fine. Opinions vary as to what each person likes though. So when you're doing the pulling, ask the skier. He may like the mayhem-up. If so, oblige.

I could have written this! It is word for word what I have done/taught for roughly 60 yrs. I bought one of the first V ropes many moons ago. The other tips are right on the money. I have NEVER had a skier I couldn't get up. My grandsons girl friend was almost the exception. She kept ending up on one so we started her on one instead of two. It worked. To me throttle is look and feel. I look at the skier and give him/her what they need . Usually a nice steady pull, slowly increasing power and then easing back as needed. (Great minds Eastie!)

rektek
08-30-2007, 01:22 AM
you'll toss that swizzle stick in the garage forever

TI Skiier
08-30-2007, 01:24 AM
The real trick to driving the start is a moderate progressive roll of the throttle. Hit it is a terrible misnomer. Not many people can hold on to an MCX that's had the throttle hammered down. Have the driver give you a continuous power up out of the hole.

Also, be sure to bend your knees. If you lock your knees straight, you'll be in a fight with the MCX - and trust me the 350 HP will always win!

Farmer Ted
08-30-2007, 02:23 AM
The real trick to driving the start is a moderate progressive roll of the throttle. Hit it is a terrible misnomer. Not many people can hold on to an MCX that's had the throttle hammered down. Have the driver give you a continuous power up out of the hole.

Also, be sure to bend your knees. If you lock your knees straight, you'll be in a fight with the MCX - and trust me the 350 HP will always win!


TI Skiier said it!

If your driver is trying to start like they're driving the old I/O you're going to have some pretty sore arms

try having them put it in gear and drag you a bit then when you're ready have them steadily increase the throttle until you're up, one thing my wife said is that when she sees that I'm mostly out of the water and the ski is doing it's thing she'll give it more throttle

88 PS190
08-30-2007, 11:28 AM
They way I drive 90% of skiers is they say hit it, I slide into gear, trans engages and I push straight to 2K rpm smoothly but quickly. Then I sit at 2K rpm and watch the skier for a second, if they end up buried into the tip I wait, and most of the time the skier can stand up. If they are "plowing" immediately I will just keep accelerating.

I find that 2K is enough to set the skier and not so much that people feel tugged.

Remember with your old I/O you'd floor the boat, it would throw the bow up into the air and sit there at full throttle while you dragged, so it couldn't out pull you, then you'd probably muscle above the water.

jss101
08-30-2007, 11:32 AM
Everything everyone has said here is true!

There's one other funny thing that we tell people about getting up - (Ok, so this sounds funny, but... read on)

"Eye's open, mouth closed!"

You'd be surprised how many people try to get up with their eyes closed. They get a little spray and clamp-em shut. It actually makes a huge difference in your ability to make minor corrections and get up if you can see. The best thing to do is to look at the boat (not at your feet!).

The "mouth closed" part is kinda obvious, but it has a nice ring to it. :D

east tx skier
08-30-2007, 11:39 AM
I could have written this! It is word for word what I have done/taught for roughly 60 yrs. I bought one of the first V ropes many moons ago. The other tips are right on the money. I have NEVER had a skier I couldn't get up. My grandsons girl friend was almost the exception. She kept ending up on one so we started her on one instead of two. It worked. To me throttle is look and feel. I look at the skier and give him/her what they need . Usually a nice steady pull, slowly increasing power and then easing back as needed. (Great minds Eastie!)

And relatively close geographically. We ought to open a ski school! :)

Upper Michigan Prostar190
08-30-2007, 11:46 AM
Lots of great advice here. The one thing is, be patient and let the boat pull you out. ONce you feel that water break away from your body a bit, then push down on your rear foot and stand up. and yes, I agree, get the V slalom rope for learning.

One different note: I like LOTS of snort comin' out of the hole. Full throttle!!! and I have a powerslot trans too. My boat is all about holeshot, and its hammer down for me on starts. I get reminded of that when I ski behind other boats. So you might wanna try that full throttle thing. I find I hate the dragging on a slower start. I wanna pop out of the water NOW. If its too much, you just wont be able to hang on. But more power MIGHT be of help.

WAT8415
08-30-2007, 11:49 AM
Great tip from JSS101 when I close my eyes I have trouble

ProTour X9
08-30-2007, 11:51 AM
Personally I don't know what you're saying with the MCX having enough power. We have to really give 'er the gas to get a skier up. Now I'm saying this coming from a 319hp LT-1 with powerslot in a 190. Even when you give it all shes got it doesn't have half the power the old boat did. I really wish we'd have gotten the LQ9 or L18(I think it was offered??)

east tx skier
08-30-2007, 11:56 AM
Personally I don't know what you're saying with the MCX having enough power. We have to really give 'er the gas to get a skier up. Now I'm saying this coming from a 319hp LT-1 with powerslot in a 190. Even when you give it all shes got it doesn't have half the power the old boat did. I really wish we'd have gotten the LQ9 or L18(I think it was offered??)

It's not the motor, it's the more wetted surface and hook drag and the lack of gear reduction that's causing the boat to not feel as powerful out of the hole.

I also think that part of it might be that the throttle by wire system seems to lack the driver feedback inherent in the old cable throttle systems. In my brief experience driving a 197 w/ MCX and TBW, I couldn't figure out how much juice I was giving the skier out of the hole. But he got out of the water quick enough so it must have been enough.

JohnE
08-30-2007, 01:59 PM
I don't have any advice to offer that's different from what's already been said. But did we hear whether 209 is starting with both feet in or dragging a foot?

ProTour X9
08-30-2007, 02:04 PM
It's not the motor, it's the more wetted surface and hook drag and the lack of gear reduction that's causing the boat to not feel as powerful out of the hole.

I also think that part of it might be that the throttle by wire system seems to lack the driver feedback inherent in the old cable throttle systems. In my brief experience driving a 197 w/ MCX and TBW, I couldn't figure out how much juice I was giving the skier out of the hole. But he got out of the water quick enough so it must have been enough.

I know that, but a bigger motor should have improved the speed and hole shot. Plus on the old hull there wassn't a lot of drag; and the throttle response was like a hair trigger. I'm just worried about pulling 10 Skiers out of the water.:)

Lennyp04
08-30-2007, 02:05 PM
We have a X-1. Before this we had an I/O. I find that if i give my dad to hard of a pull he doesnt get up because the water is moving so fast it knocks his back leg out. Tell your driver to give it a little less throttle. It worked for us but sometimes I forget and he gets mad.

With the I/O i would go all the way down and bring it back. The holeshot is so great on the MC that you dont need as much throttle.

Lennyp04
08-30-2007, 02:05 PM
We have a X-1. Before this we had an I/O. I find that if i give my dad to hard of a pull he doesnt get up because the water is moving so fast it knocks his back leg out. Tell your driver to give it a little less throttle. It worked for us but sometimes I forget and he gets mad.

With the I/O i would go all the way down and bring it back. The holeshot is so great on the MC that you dont need as much throttle.

Lennyp04
08-30-2007, 02:06 PM
sry double post......i think i clicked it twice by accident

pkskier
08-30-2007, 04:05 PM
I drag a foot when coming up and i like to have full power. Can never have too much power but you can have to little. Would rather err on the side of too much.

east tx skier
08-30-2007, 04:40 PM
I know that, but a bigger motor should have improved the speed and hole shot. Plus on the old hull there wassn't a lot of drag; and the throttle response was like a hair trigger. I'm just worried about pulling 10 Skiers out of the water.:)

If you're pulling 10 skiers, you should've gotten another pslot! :)

ProTour X9
08-30-2007, 04:46 PM
If you're pulling 10 skiers, you should've gotten another pslot! :)

Shoulda coulda woulda, MC stopped making X9s when we decided upon one. The dealer didn't have any w/ slot. 5K for slot they said:( So thats where propping comes in:)

Ric
08-30-2007, 04:52 PM
Lots of great advice here. The one thing is, be patient and let the boat pull you out. ONce you feel that water break away from your body a bit, then push down on your rear foot and stand up. and yes, I agree, get the V slalom rope for learning.

One different note: I like LOTS of snort comin' out of the hole. Full throttle!!! and I have a powerslot trans too. My boat is all about holeshot, and its hammer down for me on starts. I get reminded of that when I ski behind other boats. So you might wanna try that full throttle thing. I find I hate the dragging on a slower start. I wanna pop out of the water NOW. If its too much, you just wont be able to hang on. But more power MIGHT be of help. ahh ump, that reminds me a lyric from a fine Pat F Green song... Somewhere between Texas and Mexico.... "Full Throttle Captain!"

mccobmd
08-31-2007, 12:14 AM
I focus on pulling my front knee up against my chest, that keeps you back and keeps weight off the back foot. When I went from I/O to my X1 I found with the faster pull I was putting weight back sooner. Pulling the knee against you chest also prevents the previously mentioned tip sliding down. I feel for you, my wife gave me plenty of grief about " why did you buy an expensive boat to not get up behind", good luck. PS my 13 year old daugther got up behind it the first time.

Kevin Hickey
08-31-2007, 10:38 AM
Great advice on this thread. I would like to make one additional suggestion. Consider the length of you shorts. If they are the really long, baggy kind, they are likely to fill with water on the start and anchor you like a water-filled parachute. It has happened to me a bunch of times.

88 PS190
08-31-2007, 11:04 AM
Great advice on this thread. I would like to make one additional suggestion. Consider the length of you shorts. If they are the really long, baggy kind, they are likely to fill with water on the start and anchor you like a water-filled parachute. It has happened to me a bunch of times.


HA HA! but to add to this, get board shorts with out elastic, that fit snugly. This way they do not come off in back.

And finally, there is such a thing as going too short... shudder.

chudson
08-31-2007, 12:00 PM
I'll just throw this into the pot, if you have a rear toe hold and not a boot I'd try coming up dragging a foot. I'm a RFF so I bring the ski tip out of the water, rope on the left side of the ski, my chest up as close to my right knee as I can. When the boat takes off I lean foward and just follow the ski up coming up on top of it as you come out of the water. Put your back foot on the ski and slide it forward into the toe hold. Now if you have a rear boot forget everything I just said your on youy own "Dude". Just kiddin! Good luck!!! ;) :D

88 PS190
08-31-2007, 12:37 PM
I've really never understood how people get up one foot in, I've tried and tried because my father thought it was the way to go.

Now we've taught my father to get up both in and he prefers it, less strain in the legs and back. More consistant.

But whatever works for you.

pkskier
08-31-2007, 12:43 PM
I learned to come up on one foot due to a lack of horse power and we had to do anything we could to help the boat. Since I have on occasion started with both feet in the ski and for me it puts a lot more pressure on my arms, shoulders and back. I have less strain on my entire body by dragging a foot.

SoCalBrew
08-31-2007, 02:08 PM
I have to agree with UMP about getting a lot of power out of the hole... but, then again, I'm at 200lbs. It used to be (when lighter) that for me you could drag me up slow or fast - and it didn't matter... but now, with more weight... I need to get popped up much faster, or I waste WAY to much energy getting going... I think this is all about size - and the size of your ski... if you are having a difficult time getting up on the ski you are currently on... try one size bigger - or a wide contour ski... I've taught well over 100 to ski and wakeboard behind my boats... and it is a little different with every person... every person reacts to the water, the ski and the boat differently. So, if all else fails, get a really good skier out there with you to help point out what is going on... or video tape a bunch of attempts, and send it to one of us here, and we'll help you come up with a solution... probably only need a very few really sublte tweaks.

Is any of this helping?

Commandohorn
08-31-2007, 04:33 PM
Do you guys give full throtle, half, what?? Please give me some pointers.

Full throttle for sure! When your skier is up, pull back to ski speed

pkskier
08-31-2007, 04:40 PM
Full throttle, baby!

Thrall
08-31-2007, 04:43 PM
Ok, let me qualify this w/ the fact that I'm not a very good slalom skiier.........but I can get up pretty easily, unless the driver just "hits it."
What I found to work the best, and I get up w/ both feet in/on the ski, is for the driver to ease into the throttle up to maybe 1500-1800 rpms until my fat arse is "splitting" the water. Then put the pull to it.
If the driver just clocks the throttle from a dead stop, the handle gets yanked out of my hands every time.

chudson
08-31-2007, 05:35 PM
209er, everyone has their favorite way to be pulled out of thew water and this is a great place to find out every way there is! Best thing to do is try'em all and figure out "your way"!!!

edit:
Do you guys give full throtle, half, what?? Please give me some pointers.
My daughter weighs about 120 and from when she says "hit it " to full throttle is about a 2 second count ( 1001,1002 ) and she has both feet in the ski and works real good for her.:twocents:

88 PS190
08-31-2007, 06:01 PM
What I will say about full throttle.

Universally people who say give me full throttle if you truely give them it just punching you will rip the handle.

Very few people can take it.

The trick is that most skiers if you set it and pop to 2K or 2.5K will be out of the water and by flooring it in the second after that will get to speed rapidly.

but if you just give them full throttle the handle will just come flying away unless they are in proper posistion.

Light skiers can take more throttle because they pop out so fast.

Trick is just judging what they need and repeating it.

My father mentioned before I sit at 2K for probably 4 seconds watching him in the mirror because if I keep accelerating he gets pulled forwards.

My older bro and younger bro, heck if they care what I give them.

SoCalBrew
08-31-2007, 06:03 PM
I think this is going to depend on the boat and prop you have... I have to give a lot more throttle to get my x-15 out of the water then I do my PS190... with my PS190 (Powerslot), we tried (for fun) to see if anyone of us could get up with a full throttle slam... and not a single one of us could even hold on to the rope... Zip - gone!

For wakeboarding - you have to give even less throttle.

Do you guys give full throtle, half, what?? Please give me some pointers.

209er
09-06-2007, 07:21 PM
First of all, sorry about the delay in responding-been hitten the water as much as possible before winter comes.All good advice and you hit it on the nail about the wife "why did we buy this expensive boat if you can't slalom ski behind it!"

I am going to try all the advice, a lot of things I haven't tried before. With the I/O, it was always full throttle and muscle. With the new MC and it's MCX, full throttle about rips my arms off and my eye lids get cleaned with the amount of water.

I'm about 190# and I think I should try a different ski. I've always put both feet in, never dragged but I'll try it.

I get up on the wakeboard in about 2 seconds but I'm kinda old school, I used to love to slalom.

Thanks for all your input! Love being a part of this MC world!

Cloaked
09-06-2007, 07:44 PM
First of all, sorry about the delay in responding-been hitten the water as much as possible before winter comes.All good advice and you hit it on the nail about the wife "why did we buy this expensive boat if you can't slalom ski behind it!"

I am going to try all the advice, a lot of things I haven't tried before. With the I/O, it was always full throttle and muscle. With the new MC and it's MCX, full throttle about rips my arms off and my eye lids get cleaned with the amount of water.

I'm about 190# and I think I should try a different ski. I've always put both feet in, never dragged but I'll try it.

I get up on the wakeboard in about 2 seconds but I'm kinda old school, I used to love to slalom.

Thanks for all your input! Love being a part of this MC world!I'll mention two things, one relevant to the other.

1) A fine bunch of folks here that share opinions and experiences, thus the responses to this thread.

2) MagMania is about 6 - 7 hours of drive time for you. Invest in a nice trip down to Lake Cumberland (leave the boat at home) this coming weekend and I feel certain that you and the Mrs. will go back home (whenever) as better-skilled waterskiers. The folks here will see to it that you improve any current skills. Of that I feel certain.

Doesnt' get any better than that.

I drag the right foot when getting up. It's only natural... :D

Be patient and allow the boat to pull you out, in lieu of you pulling on the rope. The 209 is a larger Cadillac boat and it has it's own merits and sweet time for a quick up. As pointed out already, props will make the difference in the hole. Top end speeds are useless to me (as a characteristic of a boat) as long as it hits about 40 - 42 for footing. Otherwise, don't sweat a prop for the top.

From my experience, two feet in usually ends up in placing more weight on the rear than the front. A very common and hard to break habit. Thus I too suggest one foot in, then slide the rear foot in the toe piece when you get on top of the water. What this will also assist you in is stepping off of a single ski to barefoot. You will have already established that point of balance for one foot out to step onto the water.

BoulderX45
09-08-2007, 01:16 AM
I just want to toss the two cents in on the subject of getting up on a single ski with two feet in.

1. When they say bend you knees. They mean to your chest. If you weight lift your knees should be in the same position as a 45 degree angle weight slid that you sit in and push the weight up.
2. Arms are straight. Let the handle go to the tip of the ski.
3. I do not like the reference "push with your legs" You should "resist" with your front foot. The closer your front knee is to your chin the less drag you will have in the water (faster you will plane). At this point let the boat do the work. If you have any balance at all you should be able to come out of the water in the stance with your legs still bent.

OK, it maybe only be worth one cent.

BoulderX45