One of the popular options in aftermarket skis comes from Curve Industries – the Curve XS. Previously previewed in SnowTech Magazine several years ago, the Curve XS skis continue to gain attention as being one of the preferred replacement skis for those seeking more predictable and precise handling from their sled. We figured it was time to get a set of their newest skis and bolt them onto one of our sleds.
I had the opportunity to speak with Cody from Curve Industries at Hay Days this past fall regarding the Curve XS ski. I was interested in upgrading my factory Pilot 5.7 skis on my late release 2018.5 MXZ600R which I ran last winter. The Pilot 5.7 skis felt “loose” compared to the C&A Pro skis I ran on my previous sled. Cody explained the design of the Curve XS ski, noting it has a parabolic design to increase the edge surface area and give a wide intake profile so that the snow is brought in to form rails under the ski. It has a single keel design to decrease the steering effort.
Cody set me up with a pair of sunburst yellow Curve XS skis, XSX black loops and 4” carbides. The color match was perfect for my sled. Install is straight forward.
Thus far I have put around 600 miles on them in various trail conditions. I found the skis to perform very well. Cornering was excellent with the keel design and the 4” carbide. They did seem to channel the snow under the skis so you feel as though you are riding on “new” snow and therefore darting was minimal. The steering effort is minimally increased when compared to the factory Pilot 5.7 skis however the improvement in handling is worth the effort. The parabolic design with wide intake also allows better flotation for when you do encounter deeper, fresh snow, also making this a ski to consider for crossover sleds as well.
One of the most frequent mistakes riders make when selecting a set of aftermarket skis is to install carbide runners that are too long for the track length and type. In our case, the 4” carbide runners were a great match for the 129” track length and the amount of grip it provides. Steering effort of course is what we wanted to keep in check, while providing a more positive and predictable handling response. We were quite pleased with the end result.
I think the questions each of us have about aftermarket accessories are “would I buy it again” or “is it worth the money”? In the case of the Curve XS ski the answer is definitely yes. We get improved handling across a wider range of conditions, added lift in fresh or deeper snow, added durability and the cosmetic enhancement as well. They come in your choice of 13 different colors, sure to match most any sled. A complete set, with ski bottoms, loops, carbides and mount hardware retail for about $500. Again, they are very durable and should easily outlast the OE skis.
To learn more or to order a set of Curve XS skis contact Curve Industries at 315-841-8730 or visit www.curveindustries.com
By Dr Kurt Martinson