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Buying my first skis - will I like the Bonafide in a little powder, if I loved the Brahma in hard pack and crud?

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 

The question I will work up to is whether the Blizzard Brahma or Blizzard Bonafide would be a better purchase based the information below...

 

I am an advanced skier, 6'1, 185lbs, 42yo, and ski 50% piste and 50% off piste (narrow steep bowls, back country, trees, etc). I like slower technical runs in fluffy powder but also like fast groomed runs. I tend to have a mostly forward stance on my skis (pushing shins into boots). I am not an ultra expert adrenaline junky skier, and I just tinker in the parks on small jumps. I'll hesitantly drop 5 feet in the air off a sheer ledge, but that's the max. I'll ski double blacks if there is powder on them, but I try to avoid them when they are icy. I'm not very good at moguls, but can manage... I'm certainly not racing down the moguls.

 

I skied Sun Valley this year which had virtually no powder when I was there. It was icy to hard pack in the morning and crud/slush in the afternoon. I rented the 2014-2015 Blizzard Brahma 173cm and for the first time in my ski history I felt that I already knew the ski on my first run. I normally need several runs before getting comfortable on a ski. In the icy and crud conditions, this ski felt and behaved great, was forgiving and turned with little effort. I was very happy with it. I would also like to add that I recently have been skiing with shorter than normal skis for my height and skill level as I find shorter skis more nimble and less tiring at the end of the day. I find longer skis more clunky, require more effort to turn quickly in narrow steep bowls, and tire me out more.

 

I normally take ski trips to Colorado, Utah, or Wyoming (Park City, Deer Valley, Canyons, Snowbrid, Vail, Jackson Hole, etc) so I am used to more powder than I skied this year on the Brahmas... although I don't usually get lucky enough to see a lot of real deep power so I won't likely need real wide big mountain skis. In the off chance I was at a resort when there was a ton of powder I could rent a powder ski.

 

I don't have the luxury of demoing skis and trying a variety of brands before I purchase.

 

Question 1: I loved the 173cm Brahma in hard pack, ice, slush and crud, in icy bowls and groomed runs... but I normally ski in much better conditions. Assuming the 173cm Bonafide behaves similarly to the 173cm Brahma but with 10mm more width, would I be just as happy with the Bonafide in more fluffy power conditions in CO, UT, and WY as I was with the Brahma's in more hard pack and crud conditions in Sun Valley this year?

 

Question 2: With regards to length... do my arguments for a shorter ski such as 173cm for a 6'1 185lb male hold any logical grounds? Or am I just imagining it?

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 25

Well just getting back from a ski trip where I wanted to try the automatic109 and called 10 shops and none had it for demo.  That was "I don't have the luxury".  So I call BS on your "don't have the luxury" especially since it seems your ski trips are to some pretty luxurious premier places.

 

The bonafide is popular enough that just about every shop has it.  Sure, don't get stuck in analysis-paralysis and thinking there's a better ski; but just take out the one ski and if it makes you happy buy it.  Given the snow this season, many shops should be able to give you a good deal, even onpar with lowest internet price you can find.

 

Most would say the 180 size would be the one that's designed and most people of your body size would choose.  Does not mean it's a hard rule, so try both sizes and see.

post #3 of 25
Poor guy gets slagged his first post. Giv'im a small break, Ray. smile.gif Need more, if you really like the brahma in that short a length, you'll probably be fine with a 173 Bonafide as well. My usual mantra is simple though. If you ski something that you really like, buy it. Buy for the conditions you usually ski, not the exceptions.
post #4 of 25

I have 10 lbs. on you, without your height and own the Brahmas in a 180. Great ski as you observed. I got to ski the 2016 Bone last week (180 too) and felt it would be a great ski to bring out West. It was a bit much ski for the little PA mountain where I skied with a 21M turning radius. Maybe the 173 would be better here, but I wouldn't buy it for here.

post #5 of 25
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by raytseng View Post

So I call BS on your "don't have the luxury" especially since it seems your ski trips are to some pretty luxurious premier places.

I thought I might get some backlash for being vague. I do get one good ski trip in per year but due to reasons I don't feel are appropriate for discussion here I am unable to elaborate. Also I will not be skiing any more this year, skis are on sale now and from my understanding the 2015-2016 bonifide has been changed.
post #6 of 25

I agree with Markojp above -- if you aren't skiing any more this year but want to take advantage of year-end sales, I'd personally be a lot more comfortable buying the ski I already know I like. I think you know the trade-offs -- the Brahma will be nimbler and better in the trees and bumps, the Bones will have more float and bust crud better. Similarly, you have a read on the performance characteristics of the 173 -- it shouldn't be too hard to project out whether you are comfortable there or better served going up 7 mm.  Good luck, and let us know what you decide.

post #7 of 25

Get the Bones, 180cm. I'm 6', 180, 64 y/o, not aggressive, and have no trouble handling that length, even in California cut off tight bumps or an California hasn't snowed in 2 months icy groomers.  And they will certainly be better in the deeper stuff than the brahmas.

 

What's a narrow bowl? 'Round these parts, we call that a chute, pardner. (If you're going to buy a wild west themed ski--even one made in Austria--you gotta learn to talk the talk, not just walk the walk.)

post #8 of 25
Thread Starter 
Thanks all for your input.
post #9 of 25

Forget the Bonafide and get the 185 Nordica Enforcer.  I've skied them both and the Enforcer is way better.

post #10 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by mtcyclist View Post
 

Forget the Bonafide and get the 185 Nordica Enforcer.  I've skied them both and I like the Enforcer way better.

FIFY.

post #11 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldgoat View Post

FIFY.

Lest we forget. smile.gif
post #12 of 25
Thread Starter 
I just did some digging up of rental skis I have used over the years and I think 90mm is the widest ski I have ever used... Even in Jackson Hole with epic powder last year. Although I do recall submarining in JH. Maybe I should hold off and try the bonafide next year. The other option would be to get both the bonafide and brahma but that would be $$.
post #13 of 25
This year's Bonafide is pretty much are 50% off.
post #14 of 25

One ski trip a year makes you a candidate for the 'don't bother owning skis, use demos for the current mountain/ conditions du jour' club.

post #15 of 25
Don't overthink it. Get the Brahmas and demo if there is more than 6-10" of snow. 88mm skis can handle 4-6" or more quite easily.

Demo for a week would cost at least $250-$300, net $200, if you want to count savings in airline luggage charge...
post #16 of 25
Thread Starter 
I ened up buying the same ski i previously demoed. 173 brahmas.

The ski shop put marker griffons on them with 110mm brakes which look wider than what i demoed. Ciuld the shop have fit the 90mm brake on a 88mm ski?... Maybe by bending the metal brake arms?
post #17 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by needmoreskiing View Post

I ened up buying the same ski i previously demoed. 173 brahmas.

The ski shop put marker griffons on them with 110mm brakes which look wider than what i demoed. Ciuld the shop have fit the 90mm brake on a 88mm ski?... Maybe by bending the metal brake arms?

Yes will fit with no bending needed and they should have.  Tell them to put on the right size brake.  Putting a 110mm brake on an 88mm ski is either lazy or stupid, unless they didn't have a 90mm brake and told you to bring it back after they get some in.


Edited by mtcyclist - 3/21/15 at 1:31pm
post #18 of 25
Yep. A 110 brake on an 88 ski screams "crap, we don't have any 90mm brakes left... Hope he won't notice."
post #19 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by markojp View Post

Yep. A 110 brake on an 88 ski screams "crap, we don't have any 90mm brakes left... Hope he won't notice."

 

Marker brakes are notoriously narrow; it may not have fit, who knows, or they had them on closeout in that brake width only, or he didn't want to pay an extra $40 for a different brake when the 110 worked fine.  I ran a 115 brake on my FX94 and it wasn't an issue.  We didn't have any 97mm brakes around at the time, I planned on swapping it, but once i got it on, there was no issue with it sticking out; therefore it wasn't an issue.  

post #20 of 25
Thread Starter 

Thanks all. I called the shop and it sounds like they don't normally use 90mm brakes. I guess it itsn't that big of a deal for some people. He said they would order one.

 

I'm fairly certain I demoed these skis with 90mm brakes and it was tight but fine. 

post #21 of 25
Thread Starter 
Here is a picture of the demo skis a friend had with the 90mm brake. It does look a little tight. As i recall it was a little tricky to separate the skis but not terrible.

post #22 of 25
Thread Starter 
Here is the 110mm they put on my skis.

post #23 of 25
What matters is how far it retracts.
post #24 of 25
Thread Starter 
Here it is retracted.

post #25 of 25
Thread Starter 
To elaborate. The prior retracted picture is the 110mm marker griffon on a blizzard brahma. I'm not an expert on bindings or level of retraction, but to my untrained eye it seems like the brakes stick out too much. Is that a fair assessment?
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Buying my first skis - will I like the Bonafide in a little powder, if I loved the Brahma in hard pack and crud?