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Blizzard Magnum 8.5ti vs. Brahma - East Coast

Poll Results: Which East Coast One-ski Quiver?

Poll expired: Dec 16, 2013  
  • 42% (3)
    Blizzard Magnum 8.5 Ti - 186
  • 14% (1)
    Blizzard Brahma - 187
  • 28% (2)
    Blizzard Brahma - 180
  • 14% (1)
    Other
7 Total Votes  
post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

These two skis keep popping up at the top of my wish list for an East Coast All-Mtn ski, but apart from Dawgcatching's "the 8.5ti is a more fun ski than the Brahma" remarks, I'm having a tough time getting a feel for the differences.

 

Anyone with time on them both, would you share your thoughts?

 

Secondly, for me personally, which should I go for? 

 

I'm a 6'3" 195-lb former instructor who is 40/60 between ripping groomers and hitting ungroomed shots, bumps, and trees.  I'm a strong skier, but not the absolute hardest charger on the hill.  I ski fast, but racers pass me but don't blow by me -- and that's OK.  This ski will be my one-ski quiver for East Coast duty.  Looking for a ski that will hold tight on New England hardpack, bust crud, and be serviceable in (but not necessarily purpose-built for) the trees and bumps.

 

Mag 8.5 TI in 186 or Brahma in 187 or 180?

 

Thanks!

 

-Gian

post #2 of 18
I've heard from a few east coast skiers that they liked the previous version (Magnum 8.7) better than the new 8.5ti. I do have both the Mag 8.0ti and the old Mag 8.1. I think the old versions were both more focused for frontside and thus better for some in the northeast. The new series may be a bit more versitile, less frontside focused.
Edited by Rossi Smash - 12/9/13 at 10:01am
post #3 of 18

Who is the Brahma for? Probably for someone heavier than I, someone looking for a narrower ski that is a less technical ski, primarily for off-piste conditions.  Who is the 8.5ti for?  Someone at least as heavy as I (although heavier skiers can use it), someone who wants a more technical all-mountain ski that can handle anything, but is still a very good carver. 

 

With how I ski, I don't want to make too many groomer compromises with a sub 90mm ski.  It needs to be able to ski anything, but hold it's own on hard snow (and by that, I mean energy, rebound, fun factor: not just grip.  Too many people equate hard snow performance with grip only; for me, it is more about "how fun is this ski"?  Getting a ski to hold on firm snow is easy.   I love the Soul Rider on firmer snow: it is just a blast, and in some video shots, the skis are clear of the snow on each and ever turn exit.  That is the definition of a "fun" ski, even though it isn't really a groomer ski.  It still skis like one).  

 

I have never skied on the EC.  I do like the 8.5ti for how I ski though: it is a technically oriented, powerful all-mountain ski.  The Brahma, while fun, it not technically oriented: you lose a lot of the tip and tail on hard snow, the top of the turn is neutered, and I feel the flex is tougher for me to handle in the bumps (although the latter is strictly a weight issue; I am pretty light and the 8.5ti has a bit better flex pattern for me).  The tip on the 8.5ti inspires confidence on crappy groomers in bad light.   The Brahma for me is a narrower off-piste ski (I would probably use my Kabookie if skiing Blizzard for those conditions) so it is a ski w/o a home in my quiver.    The 8.5ti is a more powerful, more fun ski on firmer snow, while doing just as well in off-piste conditions.  The downside is that the speed limit is lower in junk snow than on the Brahma; that Brahma is pretty beefy and you can run at serious speed, just like the Bonafide.  

 

For me, if I am going to ski something in the mid 80's up to mid 90's, I want something that is very good technically but can still rip bumps and variable off-piste conditions.  My off-piste ski is going to be typically wider than 88mm underfoot, more for soft snow.  I could split those and run the Brahma, but I find the 8.5ti/Kabookie type quiver to be more of the ticket on how I ski; no compromises really for either end of the spectrum.  If I skied a place that gets a lot of snow at once (I don't really), then I would probably opt for an 8.5ti/Scout quiver if staying with Blizzard.    

 

I say try both and see what you like.  There is really no right answer. A lot of people would tell you they prefer the Brahma for frontside skiing, meshes with their skiing style better.  Great that we have options! 

post #4 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post

I've heard from a few east coast skiers that they liked the previous vervion (Magnum 8.7) better than the new 8.5ti. I do have both the Mag 8.0ti and the old Mag 8.1. I think the old versions were both more focused for on frontside and thus better for some in the northeast. The new series may be a bit more versitile, less frontside focused.

I found the 8.7 to be too beefy for me, but you are correct, the bigger guys preferred the 8.7, especially those who wanted something along the lines of a wide race ski.  At my weight, I found the 8.5ti to be a lot more versatile. 

post #5 of 18

There is no such thing as a 186cm Magnum 8.5 Ti, is there? I'm pretty sure (99.9% of the way to completely sure) that 181cm is the longest length made.

post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whiteroom View Post
 

There is no such thing as a 186cm Magnum 8.5 Ti, is there? I'm pretty sure (99.9% of the way to completely sure) that 181cm is the longest length made.


Well, How do you like that?  I just took the length numbers from realskiers reviews.  Thanks for the clarification.

 

-Gian

post #7 of 18

I've heard magnums for mostly on-piste Brahma for mostly off-piste. People tend to describe the magnums as very stiff that goes well with power skiiers but can take it off-piste if you want to. The Brahma is described more as an east-coast swiss army knife (or a mini bonafide), Jack of all trades but master of none. I guess the magnums have a bigger cambered profile while the brahma's got more rocker. Keep in mind I've skiied neither, this is just what I've gathered from other's opinions.


Edited by Nikoras - 12/9/13 at 4:00pm
post #8 of 18
I would not describe the 8.5ti as "very stiff." Very stiff and I don't get along. I would call it snappy.
post #9 of 18

at demoed the 8.5ti in 181 and 174cm bought the 174, sold them after demoing the brahmas in a 180cm. I have now demoed the 187 Brahma as well.  I have also owned Bushwackers in 180cm and have owned the 8.7 in a

174cm.

I am 30 years old, 5'11 170lb, Level 9 and have huge quads.

 

174cm blizzard 8.5 ti - a ski that was actually pretty fun most place, made a mean medium radius turn on a groomer but honestly I felt as if the rocker was something that was unneeded and I never liked this ski as much as the bushwacker, 8.7, or brahma.

181cm Blizzard 8.5ti - harsh stiff ski to ski, I simply could not ski it in bumps and on groomers I felt like I was being taken for a ride. One of the most unskiable(for me) skis I have ever tried.

174cm blizzard 8.7 I really really like this ski, IMO best GS turner of the bunch, great short turner and better in the bumps for me than the 8.5ti. I kept this one till it died.

180cm Bushwacker best bump ski/ wood ski of the bunch surprising good for me on groomer doing carved turns or skidded turn, was scary to though sideways at speed

180cm Brahma - I own this ski and it is right now my skinny ski. Its nearly as good in GS turns as the 8.7 but does better at speed in rougher snow. IT excel at skiing fast and taking chances. easy to dump sideway at speed and get the edge to hook up again with nearly no effort. Almost as good as the bushwacker in bumps/trees and tighter situations. Basically its the best in crud and second best on groomer(for me) and second best in bumps/trees

187cm Brahma - more ski than the 180cm but the only difference being slightly more stable at speed and better in crud while be alot more work in bumps. Not nearly as bad as the 181cm 8.5s though. If I was buying a 187cm dual metal ski it would be a Bonafide.

post #10 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post

I would not describe the 8.5ti as "very stiff." Very stiff and I don't get along. I would call it snappy.

 

Ditto.  I can't stand very stiff skis -- I can ski them, but I feel like I've been worked by the end of the day.  Snappy is a good word for it.

post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post
 

 

Ditto.  I can't stand very stiff skis -- I can ski them, but I feel like I've been worked by the end of the day.  Snappy is a good word for it.

 

It's not that the skis are too stiff, it's just that you don't weigh enough to flex them  ;)

post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post
 

 

It's not that the skis are too stiff, it's just that you don't weigh enough to flex them  ;)

 

Or I don't ski fast enough to generate enough g-forces to flex them...

post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post
 

 

Or I don't ski fast enough to generate enough g-forces to flex them...

 

If you've got enough mass speed is optional :p

post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinF View Post
 

 

Or I don't ski fast enough to generate enough g-forces to flex them...

 

If you've got enough mass speed is optional :p

 

As has been said about most popes, at one time or another.

post #15 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post
 

 

It's not that the skis are too stiff, it's just that you don't weigh enough to flex them  ;)

 

Interesting comments here at the end of the thread and leading us the wrong way, I think.  Dawg is a smaller man (155, I believe) and known as a finesse, rather than power, skier.  I'm not sure he'd be in love with skis that are too stiff. I don't quite know where the "stiff" vs. "smooth" comparison came from.  In fact, Josh seems more like a power skier; it's no wonder he likes the Brahma.

I'm more interested in the very specific feedback Dawg provides about the entry/exit from turns and the way the ski behaves in crud at speed.  This is not info about stiffness only; it's about design also.
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Matta View Post
 

at demoed the 8.5ti in 181 and 174cm bought the 174, sold them after demoing the brahmas in a 180cm. I have now demoed the 187 Brahma as well.  I have also owned Bushwackers in 180cm and have owned the 8.7 in a

174cm.

I am 30 years old, 5'11 170lb, Level 9 and have huge quads.

 

174cm blizzard 8.5 ti - a ski that was actually pretty fun most place, made a mean medium radius turn on a groomer but honestly I felt as if the rocker was something that was unneeded and I never liked this ski as much as the bushwacker, 8.7, or brahma.

181cm Blizzard 8.5ti - harsh stiff ski to ski, I simply could not ski it in bumps and on groomers I felt like I was being taken for a ride. One of the most unskiable(for me) skis I have ever tried.

174cm blizzard 8.7 I really really like this ski, IMO best GS turner of the bunch, great short turner and better in the bumps for me than the 8.5ti. I kept this one till it died.

180cm Bushwacker best bump ski/ wood ski of the bunch surprising good for me on groomer doing carved turns or skidded turn, was scary to though sideways at speed

180cm Brahma - I own this ski and it is right now my skinny ski. Its nearly as good in GS turns as the 8.7 but does better at speed in rougher snow. IT excel at skiing fast and taking chances. easy to dump sideway at speed and get the edge to hook up again with nearly no effort. Almost as good as the bushwacker in bumps/trees and tighter situations. Basically its the best in crud and second best on groomer(for me) and second best in bumps/trees

187cm Brahma - more ski than the 180cm but the only difference being slightly more stable at speed and better in crud while be alot more work in bumps. Not nearly as bad as the 181cm 8.5s though. If I was buying a 187cm dual metal ski it would be a Bonafide.

About Magnum 8.5 in 181 ... I too was disappointed when I received them , they were nice on the groomed but were really too much work in the bumps ... I did not really understand why because I ' also have a M -Power 8.7 in 181 and it is really nice! Increasingly, I read the reviews (from dawgcatching among others) and I didn't understand why they said that 8.5 was better than the 8.7 ...


So I decided to do a test : I compared my M -Power 8.7 to the Magnum 8.5 and I realized that the bindings of the 8.5 were 2.5 cm in front of those of 8.7 ... So I moved back the bindings of the 8.5  2.5 cm and went to try them ... Right on! They are still as good on groomed but in addition, they are more agile at low speed and so much better in the bumps !

2.5 cm! That's a lot ! I was so unsure of how they would react in the beginning that I did not take any chances and I started a beginner track !

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgcatching View Post
 

I found the 8.7 to be too beefy for me, but you are correct, the bigger guys preferred the 8.7, especially those who wanted something along the lines of a wide race ski.  At my weight, I found the 8.5ti to be a lot more versatile. 

post #17 of 18

Good eye. Were the 8.5's true center mounted to begin with? If so, it's very odd that they would do that.

post #18 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nikoras View Post
 

Good eye. Were the 8.5's true center mounted to begin with? If so, it's very odd that they would do that.

I verified with another 8.5 (flat) because mine has the small suspension bindings system and it was on the line...Very odd indeed...

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