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Kendo or Mantra?

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

I'm trying to decide between the Volkl Kendos or Mantras.  I've been skiing for almost 15 years now (I'm 17, 5'7" 150 lbs) and I can finally get my first pair of skis.  I ski in Utah and Colorado about 20 times a year, which I hope to increase soon, and need a good pair of skis that will let me go anywhere and everywhere.  I need to be able to go through the powder in the bowls but also be able to speed down groomers and do 360s and stuff.  I was also considering the AC30s or 50s.  Please leave any suggestions!  :D

post #2 of 23

do 360s and stuff is really niether of these skis forte'

 

Id say get the new Mantra out of these 2 choices.

post #3 of 23

Consider used skis.

There is no such thing as an all purpose ski that isn't also a second rate ski in all conditions.

I hate one size fits all tools.

post #4 of 23

The best ski that Volkl makes for your description is the Bridge.

 

SJ

post #5 of 23

Yep...Bridge.  360's and the like don't scream out "2 layer metal" ski to me, and they aren't true twins anyway.

post #6 of 23

I've had two pr. of Mantras (not the current model which has a bit of tip rocker) and currently have the Kendo.  Forget about doing 360s on either.  The Kendo is clearly the superior groomer ski and is also better in moguls, whereas the Mantra is much better in crud and chop.  I don't think either is great in powder, but of the two, the Mantra is better.  It really boils down to where you will spend most of your time.  If on groomers and bumps, go with the Kendo, it really shines in those areas.  If more off piste, the Mantra does well.  The Mantra is also fun on groomers at high speeds, but your turn shapes are limited to long sweeping turns.  Forget about moguls with the Mantra.

post #7 of 23

I have the kendo and they are too stiff to be playful enough for 360's (it's possible but not exactly fun).  The Bridge is a better option for what you're after than either the kendo or the mantra (which has the same stiff construction as the kendo).

post #8 of 23

if you'd consider used, there are a pair of dynastar 6th sense slicers listed here in classifieds.

i think as an all mountain twin with no metal and wide underfoot, those might be up your alley.

 

 

post #9 of 23

Last year, I skied on a pair of Kendo's.  This year, I bought a pair of Mantra's (rocker tip.)  Although I've only skied the Mantra's once, I prefer the Mantra.  Much to my surprise, the Mantra's felt quicker from edge to edge than the Kendo's.  I thought I'd have to give up quickness for width.  No doubt, the early rise tip significantly improves the responsiveness of the Mantra. Also, they held VERY good on ice (.5/3 tune.)  The Kendo is a great ski, but the Mantra, given my style of skiing - hard pack and crud busting, is better.  From what I've read, this years Mantra is very different from previous years ski.  Because this year's Mantra is wider, has a softer tail, and a rocketed tip, I think Volkl made a marketing mistake by call this year's ski Mantra.

 

With all that said, for your stated purpose, I agree with Jim in recommending the Bridge (if you can stomach the graphics, that is.)

post #10 of 23
New Mantra biggrin.gif
Edited by Mr. Crab - 12/10/11 at 9:27pm
post #11 of 23

As previously mentioned, if you have any intention of doing stuff in the park, you should look elsewhere (like maybe at an all-mountain twin).  The Kendo is definitely more frontside oriented, if you ski powder quite a bit go with the Mantra.  If you find yourself on the frontside mostly, go with the Kendo.  But NEITHER is a park ski by any means.

post #12 of 23

I'm asking myself the same question about which one to buy...

 

I'm an eastern skier: 6 feet, 210 pounds and like to ski mostly  glades,moguls and steeps... I'm a advanced skier...

post #13 of 23

Definately go with the Bridge. My friend has them, and they really do what you describe in your post. Haven't skied the Mantras or Kendos, though.

post #14 of 23

@mogsie: oops, sorry I didn't clarify that, but I wasn't answering your question, but the OP. the Bridge isn't really a ski for you, I think.

post #15 of 23

Why is Volkl the only brand on your radar?

post #16 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecimmortal View Post

Why is Volkl the only brand on your radar?



I'm open to any suggestions...any marks...

 

post #17 of 23

Both of the skis you mention are the stiffest in their respective width classes. Neither of them are particularly good in moguls but of the two, the Kendo would be the better choice. By glades, I assume you mean soft snow and there again, neither is great but of the two, the Mantra is marginally better at that. For steeps.....heck......steep what? Steep groomers? steep chutes? steep bowls? steep glades? steep moguls? steep trees?. Within reason, anything is good enough for steep terrain if the skier can handle the conditions.

 

You don't mention powder and apparently groomer performance is not an issue so I'll refrain from throwing those into the mix and assume that you don't expect deep conditions and don't care how the ski works on packed snow. It is a little unclear what you are looking for but of the two, the Kendo is probably the better choice.

 

SJ

post #18 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by SierraJim View Post

Both of the skis you mention are the stiffest in their respective width classes. Neither of them are particularly good in moguls but of the two, the Kendo would be the better choice. By glades, I assume you mean soft snow and there again, neither is great but of the two, the Mantra is marginally better at that. For steeps.....heck......steep what? Steep groomers? steep chutes? steep bowls? steep glades? steep moguls? steep trees?. Within reason, anything is good enough for steep terrain if the skier can handle the conditions.

 

You don't mention powder and apparently groomer performance is not an issue so I'll refrain from throwing those into the mix and assume that you don't expect deep conditions and don't care how the ski works on packed snow. It is a little unclear what you are looking for but of the two, the Kendo is probably the better choice.

 

SJ


Oups! Reading your comment, I must admit that I seem unclear... I'll try to correct but I'm new here and english is not my usual language ( I'm from Montreal;Quebec)...

By glades, I meant trees...Steeps: groomed,trees,moguls...and here, its mostly on mixed snow...

 

post #19 of 23

OK...I was sort of guessing but now you are more clear.

 

I skied Tremblant occasionally when I lived in Vermont and I know what the conditions are for the most part. I know that hard snow is common and truly deep snow is rare. With that in mind, I'll suggest that you have little need for a ski wider than 85-90mm. Between your two Volkl choices the Kendo is the better call and I'd drop the Mantra from your consideration. Actually, Volkl's best choice might be the RTM 84. I say might because it has a subtle, continuous rocker profile that gets mixed reactions. Some folks love it, some don't. If you can demo the RTM, I'd say try it out. If you cannot demo it.....I'm a little reluctant to suggest it. Personally, I like the RTM better than the Kendo because I don't care much for stiff skis and the RTM has a better overall flex. However, I ski at pretty high edge angles most of the time and the I can live with the slightly uncertain feel that the RTM has sometimes. 

 

Outside of Volkland there are other very good choices. In no particular order..........

 

Rossignol Experience 88

Dynastar Legend 85

Blizzard Magnum 8.7

Nordica Steadfast

 

Each of these has adequate grip and each has a broad spectrum of mixed snow capability. There are small doses of rocker in each ski but it is only in the tip so each ski feels more or less "normal" A purely conventional ski that might well be the gold standard for your needs is the Kastle MX 88. It is a very pricey choice but probably well worth the investment.

 

SJ

post #20 of 23

Thanks for your comments sierraJim!

 

"Outside of Volkland"...Funny!!!  

 

The legend 85 (2011) I presently own... I really like them but I'm beginning to find them a little amorphous (I call them my tanks!)... I have the chance to get another pair and am trying to find something a little more nervous or sporty... I've tried the Bushwaker but really didn't liked them on the hardpack because of the tip rocker who doesn't engage...But I loved them in trees and bumps!

I returned them and I have to go with what is in the store (they don't have Kastle; so here goes the mx88for now...)...I tought about the rtm 84 but hesitate now because of the rocker...I actually will get the Kendo I think... It is stiffer than my Sultan 85, one pound lighter for each ski , the fix is direct on the ski ( no rails) but the sidecut are allmost the same...should be interesting...

post #21 of 23

Given that you had trouble getting the BW to hook up, I suspect that you ski a fairly flat ski meaning lower edge angles. This is the type of skiing style that blends well with a conventionally cambered ski, hence, I suspect the Kendo is a pretty good call for you. The light weight, stiff flex and modest dampening will certainly make the Kendo feel "nervous and sporty". Whether they will handle mixed snow and bumps as well as what you have remains to be seen.

 

SJ

post #22 of 23

It will be verify tomorrow...roflmao.gif

post #23 of 23

Why just Volkles?  They are good skis but I would consider them the old school all mountain western conditions ski.

 

If you are going to be doing all your skiing in Utah and Colorado I wouldn't get either of those.  

 

I would look at the Armada JJ, Rossi S7, Atomic Bent Chetler, or similar type ski.

 

If I had to choose one (and I did), I'd get the JJ.  115mm underfoot with a rockered tip and tail but normal camber underfoot with a 14m turning radius.  They will absolutely crush those Volkles in powder or crud yet still carve surprisingly well on packed snow.  I used to ski the Mantra.  Good ski but the JJ kills it.

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