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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › 184 vs 177 Mantra. lift? No lift binding?
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184 vs 177 Mantra. lift? No lift binding?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I am biting the bullet/buying Mantra's today. I'm divided on the length issue. Almost no one thinks I should be on the 184. I own a pair of 181 recons and was told they would be too long. Screw that!! They are the longest K2 Recon availabe and I'm glad I didn't follow what some had said. I know the Mantra is a different animal with a lot of surface area. I enjoy GS turns and my past skis (198cm K2 Four, 210cm Heart G.S.) reflect that. I'm just under 160lbs 5'11" and am an agressive skier. 177cm? Any convincing advice either way would be appreciated. Also I'm wondering if I should use my old Markers with their 30mm lift or get somthing new with a lower profile/center of gravity?
post #2 of 10
I would go 184 if you're agressive,like speed, and considering your history on lengthy skis. K2 measures long (I've heard) so your Recons may be equivelant to 184 anyway. Check out Teton Gravity Research Forums for Mantra sizes. Many say the Gotama (183) is better at most things over the Mantra - if I were you I'd strongly look at that ski as well. It definitely looks like a fun versatile ride. I'm using Look px 14 on my Watea 94's at about 22 mm lift in heel and 17 mm on toe and that seems to do well for me. I don't know that a few more mm will make that hudge of a difference- I'd say go with your Markers if you like them and want to save a few bones. Or buy brand spankin binders if you have the cash to match your new skis.
post #3 of 10
Mehama: Mantra is better on-piste and better for arcing turns on piste than Gotama, and Mantra is stiffer... I'm buying the mantra next year as well. I'm actually a lot like you. I'm 18 years old. About 140lbs and 5'11" tall. Right now I'm thinking I'll probably go for the 177cm, but that's just because I am that light. I'm a very aggressive skier and I just sold my 180cm Atomic gs12.. If I was you, I'd go for the 184cm..
post #4 of 10
Hope you went with the 184's. Since Mantras have a more forward factory mounting point, they don't ski "long". I have 184's from last year mounted on the factory line with S914's (slight ramp angle in the heel, but no "lift") and I have been happy with them. I would recommend no or limited lift, especially if you plan to use these as soft snow condition skis, although opinions are bound to be all over the board on that topic.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Mantra VS Gotoma's for pow and only pow

Now I'm thinking the Got's might not be a bad way to go since I've got the groomer thing covered with my Recons. Would there be less question about going with the longer 183cm if I were going with the Gotoma's? It would be nice to have a ski that was truely made for one purpose, such as pow.
post #6 of 10
I bought a pair of 177 Mantras recently. Before buying, I tried last year's 184 Mantra, and this year's 177 Mantra and 176 Gotama, as well as the 183 Katana and last year's 174 Snoop Daddy. You're not asking about the Katana or Snoop, so I won't talk about them.

I weigh around 145 lbs and stand 5'8". I ski everything but park, with an emphasis on off-piste, especially gullies and trees, and not a lot of time spent in the air.

For me, the 184 Mantra was a lot of ski, but not so much I couldn't ski it from when I rented it through the end of the day. When I was skiing aggressively down the mountain, it was a lot to handle, but a lot of fun. In soft snow I occasionally had a little trouble keeping both skis doing the same thing. Going more slowly, for example on traverses, I got some speed wobble.

I love my 177 Mantras. It's still a lot of ski, but it does what I want it to and the only condition I've found where I have trouble is hard moguls, which I'm not really good at anyway. It skis with a lot of authority in softer moguls and can feel slightly heavy, but it's stable enough that I didn't really get nervous hitting the occasional bump straight on and catching a little bit of air. It also makes landing from a larger air feel a lot more stable. Going slowly, I can get them to turn but they're happier going faster.

I didn't like the Gotama as much. The day I tried the 177 Mantras and the Gotamas was a few days after a fresh snow day, but there had been a little bit of rain the morning before, so there was a lot of crud around. The Mantra makes the mountain ski smoother. The Gotama is livelier and felt a little bit turnier to me, and I found it a little easier to initiate turns, but it got kicked around a lot by crud, which really turned me off. That day, I did two runs on each ski: a groomer run and an off-piste run that had some crud-over-hardpack and some soft patches.

I think if I were you, I'd get the 184 - it was only a little too much for me, and you're bigger than I am.
post #7 of 10
Yeah, I had the same dilemma. Guys in the Calgary shops were telling me 177, but I kept reading about guys my size skiing the 184s. I'm 5'8", 165 lbs, and an aggressive advanced/expert skier. In the end, I went with the 177 (I wish I'd been able to demo both lengths, but couldn't make it happen), even though I could have probably bought the 184 cheaper. I think it'll make a good slice 'n' dice ski for skiing steep tree runs, etc.

Theoretically, I think the shorter length should be a bit stiffer (but I have no scientific evidence to support this), which should make them nice for railing turns on the hardpack too. Anyway, I was told only to go for the 184 if I was looking for more floatation, which I wasn't. This is going to be my everyday stick, and not a powder board.
post #8 of 10
I'm 6', 160lbs, good skier with racing background, and have demoed both the 184cm Mantra and the 183cm Gotama. If you like to ski fast GS-type turns and have solid technique, you will like the 184cm Mantra - in fact, short turns were pretty easy too. I personally thought the 183cm Gotama skied very short and wasn't as stable as I would have liked. The 190cm Gotama was too long. If you decide to go with the Mantra, go with the 184cm. The 184cm seems to be the most popular length for that ski, so if you end up not liking them, you can probably sell them easily.

As far as the bindings, I wouldn't worry so much about the lift as I would the fact that they are Markers.
post #9 of 10
Go with the lift. I find the difference in soft snow performance negligable, and the improvement in packed snow performance huge.
post #10 of 10
There's another way of looking at this. Longer is not a substitute for picking the right ski for the right mission. I weigh 165, own 183 Goats, have skied the 176's, owned 177 Mantras, have skied the 184's.

Mantras are not meant to be high speed crud killers. They're meant to be smearable and turny, with a surprisingly good edge on groomed. They're lighter than many skis the same size and not particularly damp for a wood core with metal (which is why they're so popular with AT setups). Look at their tip to tail ratio and their turning radii. You don't gain that much stability by going to a 184, they just feel a bit more cumbersome in tight spaces where they should shine. If you don't believe me, go read Cirquerider's reviews of his Mantras. Even the mags mentioned this point years ago. Old news.

Goats by contrast are built to be smoother and damper, better at real pow. They slither instead of smear. They have longer radii at the same length, and they have a lower tip to tail ratio. Strongly disagree that Goats get pushed around by crud; almost everyone agrees Goats are better in deep crud than Mantras. If someone's fronts are getting pushed around, they're skiing them too long or waay above the ski's speed limit.

If you want a Mantra sized ski that kills crud and loves speed, get a Legend Pro Rider or a Stockli DP or the new Head Mojo 94. Don't ask a ski to do what it ain't designed for...
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