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What ski to choose? Legend 8800, Mantra, Titan 9

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
I have been reading these forums for the past few months as I decide what ski I want to buy and can't make up my mind. Here is my profile:

6'2"
240 lbs
25 years
level 8 skier
Volkl 724 Pro 178
Like to ski anywhere that has snow, which out here is just off the side of the trail and is mostly crud, but like to get into bumps, trees (definitely out west) and like to cruise.

I Have skied the East Coast (mostly VT) my entire life and finally made my first trip out West last year to Tahoe and have seen the light. The pro's are good and great for busting through crud and making quick turns, but now that I will be skiing out West 1-2 times a year (Vail and Alta/Snowbird this year) need something else that I will use out West and locally when possible.

I have been looking at the Titan Nine's (181), Mantra (184), and Legend 8800's (188). I have heard good things about the 8800's, but a little nervous to jump to the 188 even though I am big enough to ski them I want to be able to get into the trees.

What do you think, anything else you would recommend? I am going to demo a few of these when I am out west, but wanted to get thoughts on these as well as anything else.

Thanks.
post #2 of 18
Check out a 186cm iM88 from Head.
post #3 of 18
I've never skied the Mantra, nor had first ahnd expeireince with them. I have a friend on Titan nines, uses them for what you describe and he loves them.

I HAVE skied the 8800 (in a 188, and I'm 5'10 and 195ish). In that size it's a great everyday ski out west. Takes a bit of work to muscle in tight, but not undue amounts. Good float and great crud busting.

The sizes you mention would be fine for you out west, though might not get a huge amount of use out east. I would say they are the right sizes for you though (at my size I'm looking at a 188 BRO soft for my out west ski, so don't be intimidated by a 188 8800).
post #4 of 18
Don't worry about the 188. If you can handle a 184 Mantra, you can handle a 188 8800. Another ski that is vastly undernoticed is the Dynastar Big Trouble. It is a twin tip and that is not all things to all people, but the BT has a great flex at the extremeties and is very solid underfoot. I think that the BT is quite a bit more nimble than the other two choices although not quite as powerful.

SJ
post #5 of 18
Definitely try to demo the 184 Mantra.

I weight 225lb and skied the 184 Mantra as my everyday ski last year. It will work for what you described. If I still lived in New England there a good chance the 184 Mantra would be my “when it snows” ski.
post #6 of 18
I'd agree - I am around the same size as you and loved my Mantra demo so much I bought a pair. They handle all but sheet ice well. Even then it's amazing what you can carve on that 94mm waisted edge.
post #7 of 18
Mantra.
post #8 of 18
I have been skiing the Titan 9's all season. Love them performance wise. I am a bit disappointed in the quality of the workmanship, the top sheet is flaking off. But as a east coast ski that you can take anywhere, they rock.
post #9 of 18
Thread Starter 
I appreciate the advice. How are the 8800's in 1-2' of fresh?

I dont want to be out West, get a good dump and be thinking that they dont float enough, since essentially this is the reason that I got them.

I am not opposed to a twin tip, just never skied one. My one concern is that if it will be sturdy enough at higher speeds?

Also, if i am looking at a twin tip in addition to the Big Trouble what else should I look at? Any thoughts on the following:

Fischer Atua, 186 (129/96/119)
Atomic Pimp 183 (126/99/117)
New Rossi Scratch BC

The Pimp and the Rossi are a little wider than I was originally thinking......
post #10 of 18
I ski the 8800 in 178 and I find it a superb soft snow ski. It is extremely easy to ski, initiates turns easily, forgiving - just about everything Dynastar is known for. I'm 5'8" and 165 pounds.

You're used to skiing a Volkl and you may not have an 8800 state of mind. The Dynastar is definitely different. Due to your size, weight, experience, and what you've been riding, you should consider the Dynastar Legend Pro.
post #11 of 18
Are you looking for one ski to take on your trips or would you be packing two skis?
SirriaJim and Dawg will give the best advice. I have come to really respect their honest reviews on different skis.
With that said here is my .2 cents worth of advice The Mantra is an excellent all around ski for this part of the country. The Head 88 is also an excellent ski My opinion is the Head88 would be a good for a guy your size. They may not be as good in trees as the Mantra, Mantra will also have a bit better float But over all the Monster will just rock! The 8800 would be best for trees it is light and nimble. All will be a great ski for out here. I would not worry about float. I have skied and had a blast on boards less then 70mm underfoot. I have fatties for those rare days. But I would be more then happy with one ski like the mantra or Head 88s
post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by MJB View Post
I ski the 8800 in 178 and I find it a superb soft snow ski. It is extremely easy to ski, initiates turns easily, forgiving - just about everything Dynastar is known for.
I don't think I could say it better.

I've skied it in a 188cm for 2 seasons now and I couldn't be happier.
post #13 of 18
Thread Starter 
I will likely be brining one ski on my trips out west and would like to be handle most anything. I gotta say the best thing out there was the trees and cant wait to get back.

In response to MJB I like the Volkl, and is good for a lot of things, but a little stiff which I feel especially when I get into the bumps. Before the Volkl Pro I had a a Rossi Bandit X which I really liked, but think the B line may be too soft of a ski for me now.

Thanks again, all of this help is great.
post #14 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermonster92 View Post
I will likely be brining one ski on my trips out west and would like to be handle most anything. I gotta say the best thing out there was the trees and cant wait to get back.

In response to MJB I like the Volkl, and is good for a lot of things, but a little stiff which I feel especially when I get into the bumps. Before the Volkl Pro I had a a Rossi Bandit X which I really liked, but think the B line may be too soft of a ski for me now.

Thanks again, all of this help is great.
There a couple of telling points here. First, you liked the Bandit X, second you think the 724 Pro is maybe a bit stiff. Given those two statements, I suspect that skis on the stiffer/aggressive side of the spectrum may not be to your liking. Yes, you do have some weight, and that speaks to maybe being able to handle a stiff ski, except that's what you have now and you express concern.

When I speak to someone face to face, I take their concerns seriously and don't try to overgun them. The reality here is that most folks don't need as stiff or agressive a ski as they think. Therefore, I'll often suggest an easier going ski first then let them convince me (and themselves) that they need something burlier..........usually they don't.

SJ
post #15 of 18
Vermonster92 is huge so I think those tips on the 8800s would crumble under him. The Titan Nine is probably the right beef but I don't think he'll get the float he's looking for. The mantra is probably the best of the three for him I think.

I just think for Vermonster to get the float he wants coupled with maneuverability for tight spaces and have it be a ski that will handle his girth I'd recommend something FAT, stiff and relatively short and not too much shape. I know he though the 724 pro was stiff...the stiffer fatties are just a different animal w/ the way they glide over irregular snow and don't hang up at all.

I'm thinking 1st generation 183 sugar daddy (with the plate), maybe even a 180 Powder Plus or 183 iM103/Supermojo 103. Get em used and cheap :
post #16 of 18
Thread Starter 
I am ok with the stiffness of the Pro most of the time. The only time I notice it not to be on my side is when I get in the bumps. In an ideal world I could have both but maybe that is not the case due to my size etc.

SJ, I like your reccomendation of the Big Trouble and will check it out. How does it handle speed and carving turns? Also what are your thoughts on the Fischer Atua?

With a twin I see a lot of people saying that it skis shorter than what it is, is this due to how it is measured or just the feel?
post #17 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vermonster92 View Post
I am ok with the stiffness of the Pro most of the time. The only time I notice it not to be on my side is when I get in the bumps. In an ideal world I could have both but maybe that is not the case due to my size etc.

SJ, I like your reccomendation of the Big Trouble and will check it out. How does it handle speed and carving turns? Also what are your thoughts on the Fischer Atua?

With a twin I see a lot of people saying that it skis shorter than what it is, is this due to how it is measured or just the feel?
Any twin loses contact length in the tail cuz.....it isn't there. They also usually have a fairly soft flex in the extremitites and this will detract from the stability feel that we are used to in conventional square tailed skis. Naturally some of the burlier big mountain twins (4FRNT MSP for example) are a lot stiffer in the tail but the utility of the twin shape is actually somewhat questionable in those cases.

It can be difficult to get the soft extremities without making the rest of too soft overall. The BT manages this through the use of the "spring blade" construction. This is just a staggered core and glass layup but it works quite well. The result is that the BT can be very firm underfoot and solid over much of the length but with a very soft and forgiving tip and tail.

I can't speak to the Atua. I hear good things but haven't skied it.

SJ
post #18 of 18
I own the BT and have skied the Atua. First off, SJ's descriptions of the BT are perfect. It really is an underestimated ski; because of the stiffness underfoot, it is quite good on harder snow and groomers, while the soft tips plow through or over just about anything. The Atua felt softer overall to me. For whatever reason, I found the BT to be quicker edge-to-edge (which sounds crazy to me as I write about a ski that's 92mm underfoot!) and stiffer in the midsection. I liked the stability of the Atua but didn't find the snap and responsiveness that I can get from the BT. Another factor was that I have a Salomon Z12 binding on my BT (I know all the knocks on the binding but have had no problems whatsoever). I like the light weight and found the Atua to feel heavier and slower to respond. Should note that the time spent on the Atua was mostly older chop and not in the best of conditions.
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › What ski to choose? Legend 8800, Mantra, Titan 9