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Review: Atomic Crimson 176

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Reviewed 12/20
Squaw Valley
Limited cover, machine groomed and 12" fresh off trail

I'm about 5'10 190ish 47 yo
Suppose I'm a level 9 or 10, pretty much anything at most speeds. Never a "formal" racer, but taught a fair bit.

I've got a set of M:11's that I just love and some LP's that fill in the other end of the spectrum for me. Except for the LP's and some Volkl's, I've been on Atomic skis for as long as I care to remember. Suppose my style has adapted to the ski over the years. If you don't now what that means, go ski some Atomic's.

The reader's digest version of this is that they are a better M:11. I skied the B5's a few years ago, and thought their focus was too narrow. I liked the M:11's for the same reason these Crimson's are so good - they do a lot really well.

In soft, crud, or untracked they were a blast. Light, responsive, yet stable. I had some hero snow on Saturday, but these skis can't be overlooked. I absolutely love skiing the crud and these did not disappoint. More lively (and a little hookier) than my LP's these were a complete blast to just turn it up and rip.

In the afternoon I went over to the hardpack, not ice but certainly firm. The edge hold way typically atomic and I must say that this early in the year as I increased the speed, and laid down some insanely tight arcs my legs cried uncle before the skis did.

Back to the weight room!

I did find these lacking as I tried to drive them through turns that their 16m radius was not designed. As I tried to really drive them into some real quick turns with little to no skid I'd have to say that it was really a lot more work than I'm willing to exert at this stage in my life. No real surprise though. Guess I could have figured that outcome.

I would say that these are a lot of ski, particularly when prepared at 1 and 3. I wouldn't say that these are demanding like a race ski, but you ought to be on an edge or doing something with them or they could wander off to points unknown!

Very impressive effort.
post #2 of 16
Nice review. Do you know whether you skied the Crimson Ti (new this year with the layer of titanium) or the basic Crimson (last year's version with no metal)? Earlier this month I demoed the Crimson Ti and liked them. I thought they were a little stiff for my all around needs & am interested in trying the non-metal version. Just curious.
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Basic Crimson. Thought I'd want the Ti.... now I"m not sure about that.
post #4 of 16
My .2 cents! I am 6'0 190 lbs.

I skied a pair of 176 Crimson (don't believe it was the Ti)yesterday for a couple of runs. Lots of chopped up snow and soft snow. the groomed was predominatly groomed by skiers. some very soft bumps.

I thought this was a very nice ski. But!! The but is that every little imperfection in the snow was magnified by the ski. rather jarring actually. Also I experienced a considerable amount of tip deflection. this lack of smoothness and jarring was very unnerving. it felt like the ski was too stiff underfoot longitudinally. Made it difficult at time to keep the ski in contact with the snow.

As you may know I have skied Atomics extensively fro many years and own the B5, have skied the M11 numerous times, own the sugar Daddy and numerous Race skis.


I skied the Crimson back to back with my Head Monster 88's tuned to a 1/3 (should be same tune as the Atomic)

Hands down, I preferred the Monster 88. Much smoother, and consderably damper. Much more solid and absolutely no tip deflection. None of the jarring ride of the Crimson. I could ski much faster on the i.M 88 The Monster 88 seems more supple longitudinally and at the same time stiffer torsionallly. I also felt the Monster has a slightly more versatile sidecut which is 126/88/112 19.2M the Crimson is 128/86/114 18M. the x-tra couple of MM of waist width provides a bit more float in deeper snow.

My Monsters are mounted on the deck with MOJO 15, so this was a very fair comparison.

One issue may be these were mounted with some weird on the deck Salomon binding. they belong to one of the CMAC coaches who is an onhill Rep. for Atomic & Head. Don't know why he had them mounted with that binding and not an Atomic.


In all seriosness, if you are considering some iteration of this ski, try a head monster 88. I have not skied it yet but another alternative that should be even better off-piste and in the chop is the Mojo 94. constrction almost identical to the i.M 88 but wider profile. i am going to try to demo a pair tomorrow.
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
When I tried the Crimson I actually wanted to try the Ti, but all they had was the Crimson.

As I indicated in my review, the Crimson is a lot of ski. Not sure what I'd want the Ti for, and I typically like pretty burly skis. I was making big GS turns through soft bumps at enough speed to slice through the bumps, and so long as I had the ski over and the edge engaged... very predictable.
post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by skitoolong View Post
When I tried the Crimson I actually wanted to try the Ti, but all they had was the Crimson.

As I indicated in my review, the Crimson is a lot of ski. Not sure what I'd want the Ti for, and I typically like pretty burly skis. I was making big GS turns through soft bumps at enough speed to slice through the bumps, and so long as I had the ski over and the edge engaged... very predictable.
Yes the ski was predictable. And was not the Ti
post #7 of 16
Quote:
One issue may be these were mounted with some weird on the deck Salomon binding. they belong to one of the CMAC coaches who is an onhill Rep. for Atomic & Head. Don't know why he had them mounted with that binding and not an Atomic.
the binding system on this years crimson and crimson ti is a salomon smarttrack protrack with whats essentially a z14...there is no other option for an integrated system with this ski as far as i know...
post #8 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by broad View Post
the binding system on this years crimson and crimson ti is a salomon smarttrack protrack with whats essentially a z14...there is no other option for an integrated system with this ski as far as i know...
this must be last years Crimson. It was a separate toe/heel setup with no track.

We have a bundle of new snow, it's cold and I am demoing the MOJO 94 tomorrow! I'll report back!
post #9 of 16

A tamer version of me

Thank you, Atomicman!
You are the first one who has seconded my sesations.
I was going crazy. And, maybe, I am.

I thought it was just me complaing of extremely unnerving tip deflection at high -speed super agressive carving.

A little about my recent skiing history.

As many on this forum, I was among the first ones who jumped on B5s and felt that it was a real one-ski quiver for me - nothing that I tried could compare with a virgin B5. I have gone through 4 pairs of B5s -after about 80 days of hard skiing I had to get a new one-either the ski got tired or the edges cracked ( I had two pairs warrantied and one was sold early). After and injury a couple of years ago, I was easier on my skies (and did not get to ski 162 days in one season as during my sabbatical). It took me almost two seasons ( about 110 days of skiing in CO + about 50 in Midwest) to discover that I had a cracked edge. I kept skiing for two weeks going easy on the ski unil the end of the season. When the skis were sent back, I was hoping to get a new pair for the season, as my contribution to the fact that the ski had become an official gaper ski must have been noticeable. I doubt that anyone had given more exposure to the ski and is resposible for so many people bying that ski in Midwest and in CO. But it did not happen.

I had to reluctantly move on. I had demoed Crimsons last year and was not at all impressed - it was not a ski for me - far from a one-ski quiver. Definitely not for the piples I ski and teach on around Cleveland AND in CO .

Trusting the opinion of most respected authorities on this forum and hoping to become a more versatile skier, I decided to keep the injured and limp B5s for the Midwest and get the TIs without demoing them. I had demoed what I thought was similar skis-Watea 84 (84 waist) and Nordica Helldivers (90)waist and similar (17)turn radius and loved both, especially Helldivers.

I finally got on my new TIs a few days ago.
I was fresh and full of enthusiasm for them. I started easy, and they responed very well, although not as eagerly as i had hoped for. I had not required any adjustment for Wateas or Helldivers at all - they had just accomodated my increasing efforts.

The TIs, on the other hand required a bit of adjustment, They were good and stable but washed out once in the softer snow, and I had to go easy on them. AS I got more confident on the untouched groomer, I pushed them harder, alternating turnradii. They had an excellent grip. But as I opened them more and more, as with the other skis, I was shocked to dicover TERRIBLE tip deflection, especially on the steeper and firmer terrain.

I barely made it down, thinking that something was wrong with the skis. I went out with other instructors to watch me, they said my turns looked good and precise and they could not understand what I was complaining about. There were people on the mountain , and I could not just let them go. When I let another instructor try it, he liked it a lot - but he never really opened them up!
So for the last three days, I have been a tamer version of myself...

Sorry got to hurry to catch the first chair at Kestone,
AE
post #10 of 16
This might be a stupid question but do you think Atomic would be willing to do something for you? Don't the have a warranty against defects and craftsmanship?
post #11 of 16

Talking sense into the manufacturer and "Taming of the Ski"

Now that I am back from CO and my winter rut is not that intense, I am planning to see if I can talk some sense into the Atomic and get them to stand by their product.

In the meantime, having skied my Crimsons non-stop for more than two weeks (some of the days for 12 hours), I must say that either I have adapted to them or I have tamed the skis -
no matter how hard I push the ski, I can' get the tip to deviate! The skis feel as lively as my B5s! The most likely reason is that the tips got naturally detuned and/or the skis got softer. The hold on ice is still perfect though.

As there were no takers on my offer to trade my Crimsons for B5s, and I have some offers to buy those "official gaper skis" , I am considering just buying a pair of B5s which do not have any cracked edges yet for midwestern skiing while I am haggling with the company over my B5s (with TWO cracks now).

I am making the call later today after I get back from my cross-country skiing - it is -10F here in OH now, but I have been staying warm on the trail cross-country skiing all week!
Off into the cold I go...
AE
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by AE View Post
Now that I am back from CO and my winter rut is not that intense, I am planning to see if I can talk some sense into the Atomic and get them to stand by their product.

As there were no takers on my offer to trade my Crimsons for B5s, and I have some offers to buy those "official gaper skis" , I am considering just buying a pair of B5s which do not have any cracked edges yet for midwestern skiing while I am haggling with the company over my B5s (with TWO cracks now).

AE
Good luck with your discussions with Atomic on warranty coverage & keep us posted here on the outcome. I have 4 cracks in the edges of my B5s - one on each edge of both skis. I'm very interested in whether Atomic steps up on this issue. They really should when you consider the selling price of the B5s.
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by madskier6 View Post
Good luck with your discussions with Atomic on warranty coverage & keep us posted here on the outcome. I have 4 cracks in the edges of my B5s - one on each edge of both skis. I'm very interested in whether Atomic steps up on this issue. They really should when you consider the selling price of the B5s.
One of my very close friends had cracks in his edge and they replaced his ski, no problem.

it is very obvious whether the edge has been abused (rock impact damage) or a defect. My guess is they will replace them. Your best bet is to take them back to the dealer you bought them from and demand they get an RA# for warranty return and inspection.
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atomicman View Post
One of my very close friends had cracks in his edge and they replaced his ski, no problem.

it is very obvious whether the edge has been abused (rock impact damage) or a defect. My guess is they will replace them. Your best bet is to take them back to the dealer you bought them from and demand they get an RA# for warranty return and inspection.
As I have mentioned before , I had had two pairs warranted for the same reason previously. ( I made sure the bases looked decent.)
This time I skied on them till the last day of the season and had no time to take care of the bases. The skis were sent back by the dealer in CO who had obtained the RA #, but they refused to warranty them based on some scratches on the bases (none near the crack, though) and the fact that the warranty had run out(?).

I tried to contact the Atomic yesterday,but none of the listed phones worked. They had moved to Ogden...
The only phone working was the recall line for the bindings. I left a message, and they called me back last night. They listened but only suggested to contact the dealer- that's it!
I will try today in OH, but not the dealer I got them through.
Will keep you posted.
post #15 of 16
See if you can find an atomic dealer & go through them. My b5's developed some cracks on the edges as well. I went into a local shop to ask what I should do about them because I was worried that might separate. The shop said that it's a known problem & replaced them with new pair no questions asked. My pair were 2 seasons old, so I didnt even think that they under warranty anymore. Get a 2nd opinion from another shop
post #16 of 16
I demoed the Atomic Crimson Ti 169cm at Elk Mtn. PA on Fri. 1/23/09. Me: 6' 210 lbs. solid advanced intermediate. Conditions: Groomed packed powder, some ice, some moguls, temp 35 degrees.

The Atomic rep said the 169 cm is the right length! This ski is totally awesome. Carves great & is wide enough for good flotation. At 169 cm the ski is plenty stable enough and will make any radius turn you want. Will ski nice and slow if you want, but if you are not paying attention you will find yourself going at breakneck speeds in no time. Ski is so stable at high speeds. Hit a big patch of rock hard skied off ice and was able to very easily set the edge into the ice and gain total control. I feel the Crimson Ti in the 169 cm length is a true go anywhere do anything ski.
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