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AC4 or Karma - Page 2

post #31 of 37
I demo'd the AC4 177cm last year in spring powder conditions. About 8" of pow. The AC4 does not float in powder, it looks for the bottom. My everyday ski is a Legend 8000 and that floats. However, on the groomers the AC4 is a blast. I didn't like it in the bumps though.
I have no experience with the Karma but if it's softer than the AC4, then you'd probably like it for WC skiing. I'll stay away from what size is best for you but I'm 6' & 160lbs after breakfast and the 177cm length was perfect. I don't know why you're obsessing about these 2 particular skis but there are a lot of different options out there to choose from. Don't pigeon whole yourself to one brand and two skis. Just my 2 pennies worth.
post #32 of 37
Great forum...

A few thoughts to add:
1) I've seen some very good skiers come from the midwest and east coast. I recall a ski trip in college where the guy from Chicago was literally smoking the Denver kid whose parents owned a pad in WP/MJ. After 4 years of annual ski trips, the Chicago kid confessed that as a kid he took "weeks of lessons" every year at Steamboat.

2) I was in the market this year for skis (converting my recons to a rock ski) and I tried both the Karma and the AC4 at a recent demo day. I love Volkls and was planning on buying the AC4 until I took them through the bumps. They want to "hook-up" way too much and are certainly not bump skis. On the corduroy they are simply sweet, but it sounds like you don't spend much time there. As for the Mantra, love the ski but it FEELS WAY DIFFERENT from the AC4.

3) It sounds like you know your way around a mountain and should definetely not buy a ski until you demo. Outside of hitting a smoking deal (which you won't on either ski), take your time and ride both of them.

4) I went with the Head Monster 82 and opened Grouse Mtn (Beaver Creek) this past Sat morning. Never thought I would buy a Head ski, but the demo day served me very well. If you like Volkl, there is a chance you'll like the another Austrian brand. Consider them...
post #33 of 37
Hum. I've skied none of those skis... So I won't offer any advice.
But I wonder the same thing as Toadman : Why a AC4 ? If, as stated ('Really I just hit the groomers on the run-out to the lift after an off piste run or to base at end of day (wouldn't go out of my way to do it if there were any good bumps or off piste), still love riding those rails though'.), you ski groomers mostly to go to the lift, and look for pow, crud, trees...? The AC4 is still a groomer-first ski, that can venture off-piste, with a lot of work, if necessary, isn't it ?
Are you stuck on Volkls ? Have you considered a Scott Mission, an Atomic Snoop Daddy, a Salomon XWing Fury, for instance ? They should fit your program, IMO.
post #34 of 37
Thread Starter 
Well, I probably shouldn't be pigeonholing myself, I just love that carved in camber core from the black forest, plus the damage is done; found a decent deal on last year's karma in a 185 just yesterday and its on its way. I know its a risk without demoing but I only get in so many days a year on the big hills and just want to hit the snow without running around shops, etc..

I'll keep you guys posted on what I think and if there's a tent on the hill I'll take a run or two on some of the others that you mention. From the specs the Sugar Daddy could be sweet for me but not a wood core.

But at least from your comments I know the AC4 was prob not what I wanted.

Thanks for all the input.
post #35 of 37

Volkl AC4


I demo'ed a Volkl AC4 in a 177cm length last spring
at Kirkwood. I'm 5'7" and 175lbs. It was a classic
great sierra spring skiing day. The ski was ok on the
grommers and too long and too stiff in the bumps, the
tip hooked alot.

For me the 170cm would have been better. I own a
178cm Volkl G4 and feel it's a better ski than the AC4.

I'm starting to prefer skis with less sidecut here in the
post #36 of 37
Thread Starter 
Just to follow up: Back from Whistler (unfortunately with separated shoulder) and I really like the Karma in 185, they def ski shorter than my G31 188's, bumps are cake. Tip a little too soft for powering thru the crud, but ease of turning in tight spots in trees and such worth that compromise for me. Landing airs also much easier than with my old narrower G31s, just don't hit any hidden tree trunks before a drop . Good in fresh too. In general, a playful ride.
post #37 of 37
I tend to agree with harkin. I am 5'10 180, and ski the Karma, mantra and gotama in the mid 180 length, although I would recomend the shorter length for most skiers my size. May sound silly, but I am usally in open bowls and glades. When I do ski the bumps and tight trees, I often wish for the shorter ski. Also not to confuse the situation any more, but I prefer the mantra to the Karma in all conditions, crusing, bumps and in the powder. Based on what I have read and my experience as a volkl dealer for the last 4 years, I would recomend the Mantra in a 177
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