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Kastle reviews: MX88 & RX SL

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

43 year old advanced skier, mostly east coast with Utah & Banff trips each year.  6', 220.  I'm pretty aggressive most of the time.  Enjoy most conditions except for hard bumps and tight trees.  I've had a variety of skis the past 10 years.  Favorites have included Nordica Top Fuel, Head Monster, Head XRC 1400, Elan 888, Sultan 85.

 

Longtime lurker on this site...love the reviews, tips etc.  I purchased two Kastles this past year and wanted to post some non-technical impressions.

 

Kastle MX88, 178cm:  Took these out for a demo last year on an empty day at Statton, VT.  Purchased a pair the same day.  I had read the reviews but really didn't think these could be that much better/different than other quality gear.  Wow, was I wrong.  These are fun, exciting, etc... all the other positives that have been mentioned apply.  The thing that surprised me the most was the total control I had when skiing very aggressively.  I took them out west last Spring (not much fresh snow) and used them a few times this season here in the east, and they make average conditions lots of fun.  The fun factor is hard to put into words...these are just a blast to ride and are the best skis I've ever been on.

 

RX SL, 166cm:  I've never owned a pair of slalom skis and wanted a ski for day trips to the Catskills.  Got these relatively cheap (skis, plate, bindings for around $675) from STP.  I probably would have gone with the a narrower MX or RX 12 if I could have found a deal.  These are more work for me than the MX88s.  I'm not a former racer and really don't know how to get the most out of these...I have the feeling I'm skiing them like the all-mountain skis I'm used to.  Right now they are sort of like a novelty in my quiver...they are different and fun to make short turns on, but I need to learn how to really ski them.  I'm still on the original factory edge bevels (1,2) and will change it to a 1,3 soon.

post #2 of 5

^^^ Nice. Suggest a coupla lessons on the SL's will make you love 'em. My RX12's want some edge angles and forward attention; would guess the SL's moreso. But assuming they're a (slightly) detuned WC SL ski, they'll make hard days into a hoot, and surprisingly good even blasting crud as long as you keep them on edge. They'll like speed, incidentally; people underestimate how fast SL's can go. Bumps, maybe not so much...

post #3 of 5

agree with Beyond on the SLs.  The really great thing about a pair of skis like those is that they do make you work hard (if you are skiing them correctly) and will help you to ski better and stronger (if skied correctly).  I love the G-forces that a good sl or gs race ski can generate.  What these skis will show you is how movement in your ankles and knees translates into carving.  Next time out on the SLs have some fun and play with how well the skis hold with greater angulation.  Big smiles!

 

I have the 178 MX88s and they are a fun ski.  Had them out last weekend and skied groomers, bumps, steeps, crud and chutes on snow with the consistency of styrofoam (with some crud and powder on top) - they worked great across all conditions and felt solid. 

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

RX SL follow up:  I've had several more days on the Kastle SL and am beginning to get dialed in and see their potential.  As canadaskier and beyond suggested I'm working the edge angles and getting forward.  I did a few simple drills with a former coach working on transitions and skating movements.   Last week I had the edges changed to a 1/3 and noticed some improvement today in hardpack VT conditions.  I'm also skiing much more agressively as my confidence grows on this ski.  Biggest surprise to me is that they are much better/more fun in open spaces than I thought they would be...I don't only have to make slalom turns on them.

 Added side benefit: I skied an all mountain ski today for an last hour the end of the day and was using some of the movements I've been using on the RX SL...seems like they will help improve my skiing on other skis.

post #5 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Station17 View Post

RX SL follow up:  I've had several more days on the Kastle SL and am beginning to get dialed in and see their potential.  As canadaskier and beyond suggested I'm working the edge angles and getting forward.  I did a few simple drills with a former coach working on transitions and skating movements.   Last week I had the edges changed to a 1/3 and noticed some improvement today in hardpack VT conditions.  I'm also skiing much more agressively as my confidence grows on this ski.  Biggest surprise to me is that they are much better/more fun in open spaces than I thought they would be...I don't only have to make slalom turns on them.

 Added side benefit: I skied an all mountain ski today for an last hour the end of the day and was using some of the movements I've been using on the RX SL...seems like they will help improve my skiing on other skis.

Good observation!  I have noticed the increased feedback I get on narrower skis helps me ski cleaner on my other wide skis.  Even though I can get away with more crappy technique on my wider skis, skiing cleaner is still necessary when it is steep and conditions are challenging.  Narrow skis are much easier for building skills on too, they are more responsive as well as offering more feedback. 

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