Head-to Head: The Aero 125 vs. Aero 150
October 16, 2004 - By Mike Muha
This summer, I finally got the chance to try out the Jenex Aero 125 skate rollerski while visiting Dick Fultz from the Cross Country Ski Shop in Grayling, MI for the Michigan Cup Committee meeting.
I've had a pair of the Aero 150's for years but had been scared away from the 125's because of all the 125 wheel failure issues. I haven't heard of any issues in the last year, however - it appears that Jenex has actually solved the failure problem after coming out with new rim and tire designs.
I've already reviewed the Aero 150 and Jim Hull did a nice review of the 125, so see those articles for details about the specific models. In this article, I'm just going to compare the differences.
A reminder: Jenex recommends the Aero 125 (also called the 125SR - SR stands for the new "split rim" design) only to people who weigh under 165 lbs. If you weigh more, go with the Aero 150. I weigh in at 150-155; Jim weighs in at 160.
So we're skiing along the roads near Roscommon. I'm on my 150's, Dick's on the 125's. The road surface is mixed: some sections brand new smooth pavement, others worn-away pavements, some places with a light splattering of gravel or sand from the shoulder. My 150's have no problem with any of it.
We stop and trade skis. I V2 off. Within a hundred feet, the first revelation comes: The 125's are so much lighter than the 150's! The comparison is striking. They're not as light as the 100 mm diameter rollerskis like the Pro-Ski S3 or Ski-Skeet Shark, however.
In the next hundred feet, there's a second revelation: These skis are more stable than the 150's! Although I've never had an issue with stability on the 150's, I've always used a good stiff boot. Occasionally, I've put the ski down when skiing in such a way that it plows and wants to turn my foot over. The 125 seem rock stable by comparison.
I also took the 125's through all the rougher pavement and road-top gravel or sand I could find during my short ski. The rollerski handled it well. It wasn't as smooth as the 150, but handled the roughness a bit better than a 100mm wheeled skis would, a certainly far better than any of the older-style, wide-wheeled, narrow diameter rollerskis.
I was also surprised that they were not a fast as I thought they might be. I'd assumed that at 100 psi, these wheels would have exceptionally low rolling resistance. Actually, they felt very similar to my 150's. That's a positive in my book.
If you weigh less than 165, don't mind pumping up the wheels every time you ski, want wheels that roll over just about anything, but don't need to ski on dirt roads, the 125 is a fine choice.
I tried to leave my 150's with Dick and sneak his 125's into my car, but he caught me. Guess I'm going to have to see if I can get my 150 frames drilled out so they take the 125 wheels (the newer models of the 150 and 125 accept either size wheel).