G3 Slayr Review
A very stiff, homogenous flex pattern from tip to tail.
At 1880g each they are very light for their size but notably heavier than advertised.
This review is for the 195cm length mounted +2.5cm from recommended.
Nimble, easy to initiate and rotate
Will win in a game of speed chicken.
Incredibly supporting shovels. You can really jump into the front of them if desired.
Crust or grabby snow. It just catches the tapered tip brutally.
Heavy snow. Even shallow spring snow can be very hard to control if the snow gets over the tapered tips.
First Impressions - Before Mounting
So stiff! The extreme tip taper looks even more dramatic in person. Th magnet system is very, very cool - they easily hold together.
Shape and Profile
The front rocker runs really deep at a nice shallow angle. Only the tapered portion of the tip shows significant splay. The tail rocker runs deep also but so shallow that it almost looks flat. Less tail splay than I was expecting for some reason. Both the tip and tail showcase some radical tapering. This tapered shape is going to have a big effect on the overall ski experience, no doubt.
Overall, the Slayr is very stiff. As far as I can tell by hand flexing, they seem to have a totally homogenous flex from tip to tail. In contrast to the majority of freeride ski designs which have a stiffer section underfoot, the extremities of the Slayr appear somewhat harsh while the midsection bends much more. A couple of my other favourite skis have similarly consistent flex patterns so I knew upfront this was something likely to perform well for me. I believe this pattern lends to skis which feel more forgoing in use than when inspected on dry land.
I especially don’t approve of tails which are substantially stiffer than their respective shovels. There is no shame for directional skiers to value symmetrical skis. Flex is probably the single most defining feature of a ski so having the opportunity to test different skis and being honest about what works for you is key.
My pair tipped the scales at 1874 and 1889 grams. On average this is 142g heavier than the advertised 1740g value. I emailed the company about this and was told (unsurprisingly) that although they consider that to be a little beyond their normal deviation, they still consider it okay. Fair enough I suppose. ~1880g is still very light for a 195cm length ski with a 114mm waist.
My 2021 Noctas weigh 95g more than advertised and my 2021 Faction Candide 3.0 weighs 175g more. Similar for previous pairs of Atomic and Black Crows skis. I do believe the industry in general has a tendency to report these weights with outright false optimism.
First, Some Context
I have these mounted +2.5cm from the recommended line with G3 Zed bindings. I’m using a 331mm BSL Salomon MTN Lab boot with touring-specific liners and G3 Minimist Glide skins in 130mm size, cut to fit.
These are 195cm in length. Given that the tip-waist-tail dimensions and construction remain identical between the unisex 180/185/190/195 lengths, with only the sidecut changing, there are going to be some differences in ski characteristic between those lengths.
I am 6’3” (191cm) and 205 lbs (93 kg). I ski directionally with a dynamic style including both long and short turns, tail slashes, jumps and drops. No spins or flips. The majority of my skiing takes place above the treeline in relatively open terrain, but invariably includes tight tree skiing as well.
Having skins precisely cut to the full width of the ski makes a major difference in edge grip on the skintrack. Overall, I prefer my other G3 skins: the 100% mohair “Speed” plush.
I’d like to see ski manufacturers tailor the dimensions and construction (flex) of the differing ski sizes to create a uniform ski experience per model. Smaller skis should be less wide and longer skis should be stiffer. This would obviously make the product experience more consistent between skiers of different sizes. And while I’m on this tangent: ski boot material should be thicker (in key flex zones) as the foot size increases, for the same reasons.
The stiff nature of the ski makes side-hilling feel extra stable. It's very torsionally rigid as well. The flipside to this is when crossing large depressions and concave hills, where the lack of conforming to ground can feel uncomfortable along with missing skin-snow contact.
As a ski with significant sidecut, you do get the feeling of swing weight when manoeuvring on the uptrack. This effect is accentuated by the length and wetness of the skins. Compared to skis with a straighter shape (less sidecut), the difference is surprisingly noticeable.
I do feel the extra 5cm of length (compared to my other touring skis) on kickturns, but I don’t personally find it to be a detriment worth considering in the bigger picture. And while I’m not bothered by kickturns, I find generally that swing-weight plays a big role in making the ascent feel fatiguing. Ski design/construction varies quite a bit in terms of swing weight but this is dramatically emphasized by the weight of the skins. The torque this puts on the hips and knees can be felt at the end of the day.
In Great Conditions
They absolutely fly. Its a magic middle-ground of loose and stable. No upper speed limit, but you can easily slash and get sideways. They turn on a dime.
In Heavy Pow
If any heavy snow finds its way up and over the diagonal portion of the super-tapered tip, it is liable to grab the ski and fling it cross-court.