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Old May 3rd, 2012, 11:01 PM   #55
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Location: Chicago, Near the Lake
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Originally Posted by SwisherTONE View Post
Well, Ill make it more simple:

1.) you're glossing over a key aspect - Human Nature. I have over two decades in competitive speed skating and I can't recall one time where I had a "constant" conscious thought about 'balance' (which is the focus of weight onto the plates). The only time I even remotely acknowledge the human ability and need for balance (weight focus, weight transfer, etc) is when I was slipping or pushing myself past the plane of balance. Other than that, when a skater is racing, the notion of balance is 100% natural and subconscious.

2.) Even more simply, this: A.) My main indoor race build consists of a beautifully engineered SG Avenger DA45 Skate plate. This plate has a 30* KP angle. It has a shortened nose (optimal for forward mounts, although I chose not to utilize that type of adjustment in my build); it has a three plane arch as its main feature for reinforcement, which makes it very stiff and very stable (pure Physics); it is light weight and extremely responsive. All the characteristics of what a good speed plate should be.

B.) the plate I no longer skate is the PowerDyne Reactor - a very renowned speed plate, and a very well engineered piece of skate gear, It too is fast, responsive, not as stiff as the Avenger, but still very stiff, and it is extremely well built.

3.) I'm not here to say that the Reactor is not a great speed plate (we all know or agree that it is, very much so... I think we all agree) but the reason I bring it up is this: The Reactor utilizes a 10* KP angle on its chasis.
The Avenger utilizes a 30* KP angle on its chasis.

I get around the tips of the diamond(tops of the oval) quicker, smoother, with more control and less effort than I did with the Reactor, PERIOD. All skaters who actually speed skate know that 99% of all moves and advancements during a race are made at those two points (the tops of the oval). I win more races on the Avenger than I did on the Reactor. All of this said for this:

Moral of the story: the Avenger is a Speed plate. Great to be utilized for other disciplines as well, especially Roller Derby. But it is by all characteristics, a speed plate.
Just because you do not think about the process by which your are maintaining your balance to direct the line of your rolling track does not mean that it is not happening. No matter how sharp your skills are, your foot is still oscillating somewhat as it targets your focus of weight where it needs to be to steer an optimally smooth line around the track. The more responsively your plate turns, the further your errors deviate from the optimal track. Nobody is perfect at this, and it is because of the geometry of the DA45 suspension that errors are more amplified.

You continue to compare apples to oranges and you also conflate two different plate suspension concepts. Turning responsiveness is mainly related to amount of degrees of plate turn for a given amount of degrees of plate lean, and this is dictated by GEOMETRY, not cushions.
It is an angular displacement ratio of plate lean to truck swing

Ease of turning is different concept, one that is more affected by the interaction of the cushions with the parts of the plate that they touch. The foot force necessary to make the trucks swing from plate lean is what this mainly affects. While the plate's geometry does also somewhat impact the amount leverage that the foot lean force has for squishing the cushions, other factors like the firmness and resilience of the cushions, combined with the level mechanical constraint placed on the cushions affect the ease of turning of a plate to a greater extend than the geometry does.

I doubt that you have ever skated on a Reactor with a similar level of ease of turning as an Avenger. If you had, I suspect your assessments of the two as to which is the better speed plate would be reversed.

Rollin' on AIR

Last edited by Armadillo; May 4th, 2012 at 12:14 AM.
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