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2017 Kastle MX84 review!

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 

Kastle MX 84 review

 

The ski: Kastle MX84 176cm. All new ski: tighter radius, revised construction, new tip and tail shape. Still full camber, zero rocker, race room construction. 15M in 176cm. Mounted with Attack 13 demo binding.

 

Skier: 5 foot 9, 155-160lbs. Skis 10-30 days a year. See video for skill level and skiing style

 

Terrain: 4 runs at Copper Mountain. Groomers, steep bumps, some softer snow.

 

First off, a disclaimer and a little bit about me: we sell Kastle (and would love your business if you are in the market!) and were one of the original Kastle dealers in the US. We have most every model in stock, and I personally have owned around 80% of the skis that Kastle has produced since their re-introduction to the market in 2007. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions about the brand or would like to take advantage of special EPIC member pricing. The old MX83 and MX88 were probably my 2 favorite skis of all time: skis that could be amongst the best groomer skis on the market yet amongst the best off-piste as well. The MX is simply the best ski lineup ever conceived, IMO, and I have often said the MX88 was the one ski I would choose if I were stranded on a deserted snowy island. http://www.dawgcatching.com

 

In steps the new MX84 for 2017. It has a new length matrix: 168/176/184, in which the 176 is squarely in the meat for many skiers. It does ski true to length: no early rise, full camber, square tail. A new tri-radius sidecut replaces the old single-radius sidecut. The tail shape is refined, the tip as well, and construction is tweaked.

 

If you want the short version of my review, please see the following summary: this is the best ski I have ever been on.

 

Long version: first sensations on the MX were extremely positive. I was feeling a lot of energy out of the ski Just cruising, long arcs, very positive tracking in what was a choppy groomers (a few inches had fallen overnight). Amp up the energy a bit, start really flexing that long outside leg and rolling down the hill, aggressive releases, and the ski comes alive. It literally felt 97% as good as any of the new full-on carvers I tried (Fischer “The Curv” and Blizzard “quattro”). Maybe 98%. Just tossing me from edge to edge if I asked for it, a completely unweighted feel, yet accurately locked in when on edge. The ski has no mind of it's own; it completes the movements initiated by it's owner. If your skills aren't where they need to be, it's not the ski's fault. I was amazed at the energy, the snap, the edge grip, the dampness out of a 176cm, the stability, on groomers for the MX. Rough snow, bunches of late-day groomers: the ski blasted through them like they didn't exist. Yet is was easy to ski, relatively speaking. Big sweet spot, felt no more demanding than any other ski I tried, and less demanding than some. This was as much of a “race ski package in an all-mountain skin” as any ski I have yet tried. Isn't that the holy grail for many technical skiers?

 

In bumps, I found the MX to be about average. I could trust it. The ski required good input: this isn't a hack's ski. With that said, I hadn't been on bumps in about a year (we don't have bumps at Bachelor retirees complain and the runs get mowed down), yet I was as solid on the MX in my first bump run as I was all week. The ski just sucked up terrain, provided I was active, moving over the ski, committing to the turn. The tip was very solid and positive in feel. Steve and I skied the Laser AX and MX84 back to back: he preferring the AX in bumps, while I opted for the MX. He figured the reason might be that I skied a more “2 footed” style, he is more outside foot weighted. Hard to say exactly: I do know that the MX84 is a capable bump tool, as was it's predecessor, the MX83.

 

In longer bumps, the kind that have several ski lengths between them, the MX84 is as good as anything I have yet tried. It almost seemed to dance and drift between the snow piles.

 

Skied out trees; likewise, the MX84 was quick, and more versatile than it had a right to be. Just unweight and pull back those feet: the ski whips right around.

 

In softer snow, the MX didn't have a ton of float. It is only 84mm, underfoot, after all. It did blast through anything, and tackle rough snow in a manner uncommon amongst narrower skis. There is no stopping the MX84 in rough snow.

 

A word about the feel of the MX: it really hasn't changed from the last generation. You can look at the MX series as a BMW M3/M4: a race-derived ski that is an exceptional daily driver, and a ski that any enthusiast dreams to own. The combo of performance and practicality is unmatched. Smooth, snappy, powerful, huge sweet spot for what it is. The MX is uncannily damp, but with huge snap in the tail once woken up. It truly is worth the asking price.

 

What doesn't the MX do well? Given the size limitations, there isn't anything that comes to mind. You wont' find a more satisfying carver over 80mm; it is excellent in bumps and trees; has ridiculous top end. It may not be THE most forgiving ski on the market, but it is far from the most demanding.

 

 

post #2 of 23

Nice review, Scott!  Hope I get a chance to demo them this year. (Pray for New England snow.)

post #3 of 23

Hi Scott,

 

How would u compare the new MX 84 to the current model MX 83. I had a chance to demo the 83 yesterday and was quite blown away. It's the smoothest ski I have ever been on. Its quite easy to ski, but when you crank it up - the performance is always there. I tried to find a flaws, but instead the ski just kept getting better and better. I have a chance to save some cash on the 83 right now -  so I guess my question is - should I go for it or spend the extra $400 and get the new model.

Thanks in advance, Paul

post #4 of 23

Kastles are great skis. I have the FX84. But, even that ski is too stiff for me at 170lbs to really bend into high angle carves, so be careful. Fantastic ski, absorbs everything at super high speeds, but if you are really into deeper carving, I think they are too stiff. Just my 2cents, something to be aware of. I'm looking for a more compliant carver next year. That said, all mountain use it's great, but it's a difficult ski to do Reilly McGlashan style turns on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLozwm0S_5k.

oh boy, let the flaming begin...

post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by squawbomber View Post
 

Kastles are great skis. I have the FX84. But, even that ski is too stiff for me at 170lbs to really bend into high angle carves, so be careful. Fantastic ski, absorbs everything at super high speeds, but if you are really into deeper carving, I think they are too stiff. Just my 2cents, something to be aware of. I'm looking for a more compliant carver next year. That said, all mountain use it's great, but it's a difficult ski to do Reilly McGlashan style turns on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLozwm0S_5k.

oh boy, let the flaming begin...

Looks like you're after an SL ski, something with a radius of about 13m. I would try and demo the Head World Cup Rebels ISL or ISL RD (Difference in stiffness) or the Rossi Hero ST or ST TI. (The person in the video is on a Volkl Racetiger SL UVO - a beautiful ski as well). All three skis are Solid Short Radius Rippers. But if you must have a carver, The new Head Super Shape Magnum or Rally are quite nice and definitely worth a test drive - and u could use the rally as an all-mountain tool***

post #6 of 23
Yeah, the FX wasn't designed as a carving tool per se. The tip's no help, really. That doesn't mean you can't carve it, and that it's not easy to carve, you just need to be a little more aggressive. The FX I own bends just fine for me at 170 lbs, so I wonder about your experience, What year is your FX? Qcanoe had trouble bending that ski, but you and I outweigh him by fifty pounds.
post #7 of 23

I have no problem bending my 2013 FX84s (134 lbs), so there must be some differences from year to year.

.  

post #8 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by lakespapa View Post

Yeah, the FX wasn't designed as a carving tool per se. The tip's no help, really. That doesn't mean you can't carve it, and that it's not easy to carve, you just need to be a little more aggressive. The FX I own bends just fine for me at 170 lbs, so I wonder about your experience, What year is your FX? Qcanoe had trouble bending that ski, but you and I outweigh him by fifty pounds.

I don't have trouble bending it in a carving situation. My issue is that it's a bit stiff in bumps. The FX 85 is entirely different in this regard, btw. In any case the FX 84 is a very nice carver with good grip. But for that purpose the MX is more exciting.
post #9 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by qcanoe View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lakespapa View Post

Yeah, the FX wasn't designed as a carving tool per se. The tip's no help, really. That doesn't mean you can't carve it, and that it's not easy to carve, you just need to be a little more aggressive. The FX I own bends just fine for me at 170 lbs, so I wonder about your experience, What year is your FX? Qcanoe had trouble bending that ski, but you and I outweigh him by fifty pounds.

I don't have trouble bending it in a carving situation. My issue is that it's a bit stiff in bumps. The FX 85 is entirely different in this regard, btw. In any case the FX 84 is a very nice carver with good grip. But for that purpose the MX is more exciting.


Hi q :)!

 

You're talking about the non-HP 85, yes?

post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by squawbomber View Post

Kastles are great skis. I have the FX84. But, even that ski is too stiff for me at 170lbs to really bend into high angle carves, so be careful. Fantastic ski, absorbs everything at super high speeds, but if you are really into deeper carving, I think they are too stiff. Just my 2cents, something to be aware of. I'm looking for a more compliant carver next year. That said, all mountain use it's great, but it's a difficult ski to do Reilly McGlashan style turns on: 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XLozwm0S_5k.
oh boy, let the flaming begin...

I've never found the FX94 (own) or 84 (skied a bit) super stiff. More middle of the range IMO. I'm 6', 165, don't tend to like really stiff skis. But IME, the FX series are more demanding than the MX. Less metal but single longish radius and soft-snow tip, so will do what you ask, no more, doesn't leap into the turn. Designed for mixed snow, not firm. So wonder if it's about that stuff instead of stiffness per se. 😐
post #11 of 23
Buy last years. Some of the best reviews I ever read were on that ski.
Edited by levy1 - 6/13/16 at 9:45am
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by levy1 View Post

Buy last years. Some of the best reviews I ever read where on that ski.


FX 84? After skiing the 85s (HP & non), I was perfectly happy going back to the 84.

post #13 of 23
The first gen Fx 84 and the second are very different skis. Not distinguishing which you're talking about just adds confusion. Simply, the first gen has window panes tip and tail. Second gen only tip.
If you found the FX 84 too stiff likely you're talking about the 2nd gen as the first is pretty soft. I'm a big fan of the first gen, very meh to dislike the 2nd, and like the 85. Only tried the non hp.
post #14 of 23
Yes, sorry, 2nd generation. Preferred that to the non-HP on piste.
post #15 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tog View Post

The first gen Fx 84 and the second are very different skis. Not distinguishing which you're talking about just adds confusion. Simply, the first gen has window panes tip and tail. Second gen only tip.
If you found the FX 84 too stiff likely you're talking about the 2nd gen as the first is pretty soft. I'm a big fan of the first gen, very meh to dislike the 2nd, and like the 85. Only tried the non hp.


Exactly.  I've got the first generation, with teardrops at both tip and tail.

They are very light, and easy to flex longitudinally.  

Torsionally, they are stiff and will hold a carve easily.  

For heavy chop, they could be stiffer, and I'm saying this as a light skier, not a heavy charger.

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

The first gen Fx 84 and the second are very different skis. Not distinguishing which you're talking about just adds confusion. Simply, the first gen has window panes tip and tail. Second gen only tip.
If you found the FX 84 too stiff likely you're talking about the 2nd gen as the first is pretty soft. I'm a big fan of the first gen, very meh to dislike the 2nd, and like the 85. Only tried the non hp.


Exactly.  I've got the first generation, with teardrops at both tip and tail.

They are very light, and easy to flex longitudinally.  

Torsionally, they are stiff and will hold a carve easily.  

For heavy chop, they could be stiffer, and I'm saying this as a light skier, not a heavy charger.


The 2nd gen is great in chop, but it is somewhat heavier.  

post #17 of 23

Hey guys, I know there is a right place for selling gear on Epicski, but since I don't use this forum much (I'm a TGR guy) it says I cannot post to the gear trade. Do you guys have any suggestions as I am trying to sell a brand new pair of 184 Kastle MX84s that I am not sure why I ordered last spring. Must have been a groomer day ;)  Anyhow, just thought I would start here to see if anyone was interested. Located in Big Sky, MT. They are still in plastic and even though it would be a very small loss, I would ship to anywhere in lower 48 for $600. Still a lot better than $1,299 retail, right? 

 

Anyhow, if this is not appropriate here, just let me know and I will delete this post. Thanks.

 

https://bozeman.craigslist.org/spo/5874363915.html

 

Kevin

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

Hey guys, I know there is a right place for selling gear on Epicski, but since I don't use this forum much (I'm a TGR guy) it says I cannot post to the gear trade. Do you guys have any suggestions as I am trying to sell a brand new pair of 184 Kastle MX84s that I am not sure why I ordered last spring. Must have been a groomer day ;)  Anyhow, just thought I would start here to see if anyone was interested. Located in Big Sky, MT. They are still in plastic and even though it would be a very small loss, I would ship to anywhere in lower 48 for $600. Still a lot better than $1,299 retail, right? 

 

Anyhow, if this is not appropriate here, just let me know and I will delete this post. Thanks.

 

https://bozeman.craigslist.org/spo/5874363915.html

 

Kevin


Hi Kevin, 

 

Here are the rules from http://www.epicski.com/f/10/gear-swap-buy-sell-gear 

 

"You must be an active EpicSki Member to post a sale. Only members with 3 Reputation Points and 15 posts, can post thread starters, any member can reply. Be aware that EpicSki merely provides the forum, the exchange is entirely up to the buying and selling parties. EpicSki plays no role in the transaction and bears no responsibility for any problems that may arise.  Please do not post or provide personal information like phone numbers or email  address in post, use PM tool."

 

I've given you enough Reputation points — you just need to poke around and post a bit (9 more times!).  We don't do sales in other threads as a rule.

post #19 of 23
Thanks for that lakespapa!
post #20 of 23
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by lakespapa View Post
 


Hi Kevin, 

 

Here are the rules from http://www.epicski.com/f/10/gear-swap-buy-sell-gear 

 

"You must be an active EpicSki Member to post a sale. Only members with 3 Reputation Points and 15 posts, can post thread starters, any member can reply. Be aware that EpicSki merely provides the forum, the exchange is entirely up to the buying and selling parties. EpicSki plays no role in the transaction and bears no responsibility for any problems that may arise.  Please do not post or provide personal information like phone numbers or email  address in post, use PM tool."

 

I've given you enough Reputation points — you just need to poke around and post a bit (9 more times!).  We don't do sales in other threads as a rule.

$600? That seems kinda cheap....

post #21 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgcatching View Post
 

$600? That seems kinda cheap....

Hey Dawgcatching, first, thanks for your many awesome reviews of Kastle skis over the years. Second, I am not sure I understand your post. I am not sure if that is sarcastic or if I am mispriced that bad for this site. Was just trying to recover my cost. Really after a BMX115. Thanks. 

post #22 of 23

I think what he meant was that $600, if that's what you mean by recovering your costs, is waaay below what any MX84 is being sold for. As in, like half. So either you got hooked up by a friend who owns a store and doesn't mind losing the other $500-$600 he could be making by selling it retail right now, or something's off. Seriously, go check online. 

post #23 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

I think what he meant was that $600, if that's what you mean by recovering your costs, is waaay below what any MX84 is being sold for. As in, like half. So either you got hooked up by a friend who owns a store and doesn't mind losing the other $500-$600 he could be making by selling it retail right now, or something's off. Seriously, go check online. 

Got ya. Yeah, in full disclosure, I'm a ski Patroller in Big Sky and we can make wholesale orders in the spring at really good prices. I just ordered the wrong sticks. I will try raising my prices or maybe it will go for $600 on ebay. Thanks.
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