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Line Mothership

post #1 of 49
Thread Starter 
I figured it's time to review these babies; I keep seeing threads where similar skis are discussed with no mention of the Mothership, and in general there is not a lot of talk about the Mothership here on Epic.  It's a pity, as I consider it to be an outstanding ski in the 110mm waist range.

Me: Age 40, 6'1", 200 lbs
Skis: 185cm Line Mothership (measure 189cm), sidecut 142-111-131
Bindings: Head Mojo 15, mounted on the line for a 325mm BSL



I experimented with a bunch of wide rockered and semi-rockered skis last spring, and virtually stumbled backwards into the Mothership.  What a find.  The Mothership has an early rise tip, traditional (but minimal) camber in the middle, and an upturned tail.  They measure longer than spec -- these 185cm skis really compare to a 189cm traditional ski in length -- but I think the conservative sizing is representative of the effective length of the ski.

 

When tipped on edge on firm snow, the relatively deep (for this class ski) 24m-radius sidecut and traditional contact points allow the skis to hook up very nicely and predictably, and the materials/construction (two layers of titanal sandwiching a macro-block maple core) make for a damp and fairly stiff ski that handles a range of hard snow conditions well.  This is important to me, as almost every other ski in this size class ranges from a comedy to a liability on hard or groomed snow.  Not the Mothership; earlier this week I skied them locally in the mid-Atlantic, with conditions biased towards east-coast packed snow, with ungroomed man-made snow and death cookies thrown in, and the Motherships ruled.  I tried my best to upset the skis and find a speed limit or envelope, but couldn't.  I literally beat the crap out of the skis all day long over a wide range of conditions, and they took it with margin to spare, and returned a fun ride on top of it.


When skied powder style in soft snow, skier weight cancels and reverses the minimal camber on the Mothership.  Combined with the early rise tip, it makes these skis feel like a low-rockered ski, which is to say, great.  They plane up with little effort, and before you know it you're practically carving turns on top of the powder.  I'd say this ski gives you about 70-80% of the benefit of a fully rockered ski with none of the liabilities.  And keep in mind I am on the 185cm; the longer 195cm would be even better in powder.  

Crud?  What crud?  I had a hard time evaluating crud performance of these skis because they simply keep you on top of the crud, and the beefy construction pretty much makes the crud seem invisible.  Forget about notions like plowing crud or slicing through it.  The Mothership rides right over it.

So what we have is a very good wide powder/crud ski that also happens to do well on hard snow.  But beyond that, I found the Mothership to be about the most "bomber" ski I have tried in a good many years.  They get better and more solid the faster you go, and they let you blow over, through, and down the most gnarly conditions imaginable.  If you want to be confident about your skis, these won't disappoint.  And if you're looking for a wide one-ski quiver, look no further.  I already knew the Motherships would be good in soft snow, but their performance on harder snow makes them an obvious choice when you can only pack one pair of skis in the bag.  I have been looking for a full range ski for out west, and I think this is it.  The Motherships will rock those powder and soft snow days, but not let you down if it's a high pressure week with more challenging and more varied conditions.

If there is a downside to these skis, it's weight.  At  185cm, they weight nearly 6 pounds each.  Yeah, I said 6.  Each.  Thankfully, I never noticed that weight when they were underfoot; if anything, it was part of the bomber freight train feel that I dug.  But you probably wouldn't want to carry these skis around too much, and touring with them would be insane unless you're Conan the Barbarian.  Then again, Conan had some lines that sum up the Mothership pretty well.  "What is best in life? To crush your enemies, to see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentations of their women."  Yeah, that about says it.


 

post #2 of 49
Great Review...  Line makes some good skis.  I have the Prophet 100 and the Chronic, and they are both a great ride. 
post #3 of 49
Skier 219,

Nice review and could not agree with you more...  I demo'd a pair of 195's last year and absolutely fell in love with them and was ready to pull the trigger on 195s and at the last minute pulled away from my purchase as I ended up supporting Scott over at ON3P and picked up a pair of 191 Wrenegades...  The Mo Ships were even cheaper, but I am so blown away by the guys at ON3P and what they are doing I had to support their business... 

My current quiver is 184 Volkl AC4s (going bye bye as the Stocklis are just so smooth), 186 XXL Stocklis, 187 Movement Thunders (killer skis) and 190 Gold Goats and I was looking for a ski with better float and major crud buster and the Mo Ships hit the mark on all points...  I really wanted to try the 191 Movement Goliaths, but dam is it hard to get your hands on these boards...  After looking into ON3P and reading reviews on the Wrenegade (read 2 reviews who both were using the 195 Mo Ship as their daily driver) this truly seemed like this might be Nirvana...  It is suppose to have better float and crud busting abilities than the Mo Ship and if this is the case I will have found the ski of my dreams...  If for some odd reason I dont like it than here I come 195 Mo Ship!  Def. a great ski with big balls and the only limit it has is that of the skier...
post #4 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye View Post

Skier 219,

Nice review and could not agree with you more...  I demo'd a pair of 195's last year and absolutely fell in love with them and was ready to pull the trigger on 195s and at the last minute pulled away from my purchase as I ended up supporting Scott over at ON3P and picked up a pair of 191 Wrenegades...  The Mo Ships were even cheaper, but I am so blown away by the guys at ON3P and what they are doing I had to support their business... 

My current quiver is 184 Volkl AC4s (going bye bye as the Stocklis are just so smooth), 186 XXL Stocklis, 187 Movement Thunders (killer skis) and 190 Gold Goats and I was looking for a ski with better float and major crud buster and the Mo Ships hit the mark on all points...  I really wanted to try the 191 Movement Goliaths, but dam is it hard to get your hands on these boards...  After looking into ON3P and reading reviews on the Wrenegade (read 2 reviews who both were using the 195 Mo Ship as their daily driver) this truly seemed like this might be Nirvana...  It is suppose to have better float and crud busting abilities than the Mo Ship and if this is the case I will have found the ski of my dreams...  If for some odd reason I dont like it than here I come 195 Mo Ship!  Def. a great ski with big balls and the only limit it has is that of the skier...

Have you been on the wrens yet?  I'm looking into the wrens as a compliment to my Moment Night Trains.  I'd be interested in a review from you on them.  I've read the reviews on TGR and they sound good.  Was thinking Billy goats, as well, but they seem very similar in size and performance to the Night Trains..
post #5 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hokiesnow View Post




Have you been on the wrens yet?  I'm looking into the wrens as a compliment to my Moment Night Trains.  I'd be interested in a review from you on them.  I've read the reviews on TGR and they sound good.  Was thinking Billy goats, as well, but they seem very similar in size and performance to the Night Trains..

 


I'm on the fence right now between Wrens, and Billygoats myself. I'm also curious as to what their plans are as far as next season. If they will press through the summer so that people can start their season with their ski's. And if there will be any changes to the lineup shapes, topsheets, etc.
post #6 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by ecimmortal View Post





I'm on the fence right now between Wrens, and Billygoats myself. I'm also curious as to what their plans are as far as next season. If they will press through the summer so that people can start their season with their ski's. And if there will be any changes to the lineup shapes, topsheets, etc.

Yeah, I was originally torn between Billygoats and Night Trains.  I went Night Trains because Moment is local; I live in Minden, NV.  Actually still interested in goats, but I fear they may be way too much of an overlap with NT's; that being said,  my home mountain is Heavenly, and all the best terrain at the heav is in the trees, so I really wouldn't mind having two killer skis for the trees.  My wife, however, would disagree.  Anyway, I figure if on3p has another pre-order next summer, with the pricing they did this past year, I may try to slide a pair by....
post #7 of 49



Hokiesnow,

I have not been on the Wren yet, but hope to soon...  I have trips coming up the next 2 months and will be in Telluride (hope to have them strapped to my back for the hike up to Palymyra Peak) and than will be at Alta than Bachelor...  I will def post a review for sure on the Wren as soon as I get a chance to take them for a spin...

I really like my 190 Goats, but was looking for something that was a little surfy and better crud busting ability and started taking a hard look at the 190 Bibby Pro, 191 Movement Goliath and 195 Mo Ship...  The Katana would have been on the list, but I have not been thrilled with the way some of my recent Volkl's have been holding up...  I than heard about ON3P and discovered the Wrenegade...  I am not a jibber and much prefer stiff demaning skis that push you and only get better the faster you are going...  I ended up speaking to Scott several times (phone and through email) and after our conversations I knew the Wren would be for me...  The float is suppose to be fantastic as well as its crud busting abilities and still perform well all mountain...  The Billy Goat was very interesting, but off the bat it was going to be to short for me (I am 6'4" - 215 lbs - ex racer)...

For me I believe moving forward I will only be supporting Indie companies...  The passion that Scott and the rest of the ON3P has for skiing and their products is fantastic...  They are def. behind in production and have run into some issues, but through the entire process Scott has over communicated with us and has been extremely apologetic...  In addition to this many have received their Billy Goats as this was the first ski he ran through production and the reviews have been short of stellar and everyone has commented on how well the skis are finished...  If you love skiing the trees and like a fun snappy ski in POW the Billy Goat is your ticket...  I do know about the Night Train and I believe you are right as their would be overlap with the Billy...

 

As soon as I get the Wrens I will throw up a review and hope to have them in my hands by the end of this month...  According to some of the hints that have been dropped from the ON3P guys new sizes will probably be added as well as another new ski added to their line up...

Buckeye

post #8 of 49
I'm looking forward to building an ON3P quiver over the summer in preparation for next winter. How can I not support guys pressing a couple of miles from my front door. And they are getting good reviews.
post #9 of 49
Thread Starter 
 I really like the specs of the Wrenegade.  I doubt I will be able to demo a pair (not widespread yet) so please post more info on Epic when you have some solid time on the skis.

Do you have more info on the construction?  Any metal layers?
post #10 of 49
Here is the website: http://on3pskis.com/

You can also find a bunch of reviews on TGR here: http://www.tetongravity.com/forums/showthread.php?t=104129
post #11 of 49
Skier 219,

No metal in the bad boys and the core is bamboo (light under foot and lively)...  The ski is suppose to be very light for its size and the boys that sport the Mo Ships said that the Wrens win hands down when comparing weight (that to me was the only draw back to the Mo Ship as they were HEAVY)...  The reviews did state that the Mo Ships hold a better edge on very firm, but it was marginal, but even though it was lighter the Wrens were better crud busters and provided great float...  What the Wren sounds like is a Katana that is built better, livlier and with bigger balls...  Again, if this is what it ends up being than I will def. have my dream big mountain ski...  As stated above there are many reviews that have been posted on TGR commenting the Wren as well as the other ON3P skis...

And yes, as soon as I get a chance to put them through their paces I will def. post a review...  Cannot freaking wait...

Buckeye
post #12 of 49

The ski has to be a real chrger if it can hold an edge in eastern ice at 111 under foot and that is certainly the reputation it has from the reviews on TGR. You are absolutely right that big stiff charging skis are not reviewed here very frequently. Nor were the skis that these evolved from like the squad and im103. Its too bad really since they are perhaps the most fun skis to be on when you have your A game working and conditions are right. You should do a follow up review once you get out west. Nothing in the midatlantic is going to do those skis justice and show what they really can do.

Also to add a counter point to your review: The problem with charger type skis is they have the tendency to kick your butt if you don't have your A game and even if you feel good for all day skiing they are alot of work. Also, sadly if the conditions are not good, e.g. low visibility, often combined with deep snow and digging tips they can be the most frustrating skis in the quiver to use. 
 


Edited by tromano - 1/15/10 at 5:02pm
post #13 of 49
Thread Starter 
Buckeye, I spent a fair amount of demo time on Katanas last spring, and they were OK, but I like the stiffness/damping  advantage that the Mothership brings to the party.  I would hope the Wren has some of that too.  The Katana definitely got noodly in some conditions; in fact you can wiggle them in hand and start to see some of that.  In contrast, the Mothership is very structurally rigid and that shows at high speed on hard snow.  I sort of feel like you need some amount of metal to attain that, even if just for the damping.

Tim, I had some concern that the Mothership would be tough as an all day ski, and the appearance/weight suggests that.  But it is not the case at all.  My iM88s are *far* more demanding than the Motherships, which was both a surprise and a relief.  I normally can't push the iM88s hard for a full day, as they demand my A-game with every single turn (I believe it's due to the combination of stiffness and deep camber that takes a lot of energy to bend and carve in 186cm, and it adds up over a full ski day).  In contrast, the Motherships "invite" an A-game, but don't really require it.  I'd say they bring the bomber/charger feel to enable/support aggressive hard skiing, with reasonable skill requirements and modest demands.

When I had the Motherships out locally 2 weeks ago, my goal was to see if I could live with them as an all-day ski even in less than optimal conditions for a 111mm waist ski, and they definitely exceeded my expectations.  I planned to start my morning runs on them, with a possible bailout to narrower skis at lunch, but ended up skiing the Motherships for the whole day.  It was just plain fun, and I never saw major downsides.  I think the skis' high confidence level offsets any potential disadvantages, and the added fun/capability makes up for any issues with the size/bulk.
post #14 of 49
Thread Starter 
 Time for a followup after four solid and rigorous days on the Motherships at Alta.  Some points I want to hit:

1) They are very livable skis, and I had no issues driving them for full bell-to-bell ski days.  And keep in mind that I live at sea level, and usually have to pace myself to manage effects of skiing at 8500-11500 feet elevation when I go to Alta.  Though big and burly, the Motherships are really gentle giants and very livable as an all-day ski.

2) Groomer performance, especially at ultra high speed, is simply amazing.  The Motherships are clearly the best performing of any ski I have tested in this waist range on groomed or hard snow.  I still have not found a speed limit.  When cranking a hard 120-degree turn at high speed several times this past week, I kept thinking that the Motherships would put some of my narrower skis to shame.  Tremendous amount of confidence at high speed, and the skis will charge through uneven terrain smoothly, without disrupting the skier at all.

3) Weight has not been an issue on downhill runs.  On one traverse where I was breaking trail in wind-packed snow, I might have wished for a lighter ski.  But I do that sort of thing once every 5 years myself.

4) Maneuverability in soft Utah moguls is very good.  You must maintain a minimum speed (which is a good idea in bumps anyhow), but once there, the skis easily come around to make quick turns in tight spaces.  Over a period of days, I got the mixture of upper/lower body balance perfected for these skis.  Ride up onto the backside of the bump, toggle the upper body weight forward and then down/around to the front side of the bump, and whip the skis around.  The early rise tip and upturned tail allow the skis to spin easily.

5) The Motherships are outstanding in deep crud.  I believe the weight/bulk really helps here, serving as the backup "grunt" behind the tip rocker and ski shape.  Super confident in crud conditions.

6) Finally, powder.  The first 1-2 turns feel traditional, but as soon as speed builds, the tips plane right up.  Very nice.  Once going, I stick with my earlier assessment that you get 70-80% of the goodness of a fully rockered ski.  At speed in powder, the Motherships will keep me on top of the snow, and I can maintain a normal forward stance the whole time.  I found the skis got better and better, and more confident, the more speed I added in powder.  This made for some mind blowing steep tree runs in 16-20" of powder, where I felt like I was having an out of body experience of some better skier.  I give full credit to the Motherships for enabling me to do that.  I hesitate to say gear is making me better, but these skis are definitely "enablers".  I think they eliminate shortcomings and restrictions of other skis that have been holding me back.

7) In terms of length, I found 185cm absolutely perfect for my height/weight at Alta.  Never felt the need for the longer 195cm models in powder and crud, or at high speed on groomers, and I appreciated the relative nimbleness of the shorter 185cm skis in bumps and tight spaces.  Finally, it seems I have stumbled on a perfect combination for my needs.
post #15 of 49
Great, thanks for the review but remember you ain't one of the smaller dudes. Pretty big I'd say. 
post #16 of 49
Quote:
Originally Posted by apeyros View Post

Great, thanks for the review but remember you ain't one of the smaller dudes. Pretty big I'd say. 

well ski out west and go faster!! but yeah lighter guys on the east coast this probably isnt a good ski for them.
post #17 of 49
I'm on 191 Lhasa's. Think the 185 Mships would be no problem as well. 
post #18 of 49
Thread Starter 
 In general, I have found that my "ideal" east coast skis often feel like toothpicks out West, especially at Alta/Snowbird/Jackson, so upsizing a bit might make sense in general.  Then again, I saw a dude killing it in Supreme bowl under the chair this week, and when I got close I noticed he was skiing RX-8s from 5-6 years ago, which is the last ski I'd choose for a powder day out West.  So talent definitely matters!
post #19 of 49
 so I wonder if these would feel less ponderous on hardpack than my thugs? 

you want to come to stowe so we can trade?

this is a ski that I always looks like and think damn I would want to ride that worried I am too light for them though.
post #20 of 49
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by BushwackerinPA View Post

 so I wonder if these would feel less ponderous on hardpack than my thugs? 

you want to come to stowe so we can trade?

this is a ski that I always looks like and think damn I would want to ride that worried I am too light for them though.

 

Heh, I left my Motherships in Utah for my next trip out.  Though with the snow we just got in VA, maybe I should have brought them home....

I remember looking at the Thugs in 07 or 08 (green graphics) but never skied them, so I don't have a good feel how they would compare. 
post #21 of 49
From what I can imagine the Mships are not a ski you should ski on while on the EC.

BTW, Josh, have you tried the lhasa's. These are really cool,  IMO. 
post #22 of 49
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by apeyros View Post

From what I can imagine the Mships are not a ski you should ski on while on the EC.

BTW, Josh, have you tried the lhasa's. These are really cool,  IMO. 

Heck I skied them on mid-Atlantic snow and had a blast!  I think they would make a great Vermont ski for the right skier/location.
post #23 of 49
I just wanted to say they prefer more open spaces. When it comes to the snow type they can handle they are the most versatile fat guys in the world. 
post #24 of 49
I still cant say enough about these ski's. I just got back from  5 days in Telluride and never wished I had anything else.
They are perfect in almost all conditions and floated my 250lbs effortlessly.
post #25 of 49
great review
post #26 of 49
Anyone have any direct comparisons of the Mo'ships with the Katana and Elan 1010?  On paper they look like fairly similar skis.
post #27 of 49
Thread Starter 
 My experience is with last year's Katana.  It's a similar ski, and I liked it a lot, but I was able to find its speed limit when skiing fast on hard snow.  I haven't come anywhere close to finding the Mothership's speed limit (it's obviously higher than mine).

I haven't skied the new 09/10 Katana, but I am thinking the changes that were made wouldn't have improved high speed stability on hard snow -- perhaps the opposite.  But those same changes have probably made it better in powder for sure.
post #28 of 49
After looking harder at what Line is doing I'm actually leaning toward the 2011 Line Prophet 115 now.  It's just a crazy triple sidecut ski (called their P-cut geometry like on the current Prophet series) with a ridiculously deep sidecut for a ski that's 115 underfoot (just how I like it - I spend my time on my edges, not my bases ).

Check out these specs:  153-115-142 (by my calculations it's something like a 19m radius, but they don't list it in the new catalog).  In the 186cm length that equates to a huge load area (1866) for float along with an early rise tip.

I really liked the Prophets that I rode at the SIA demos, but I didn't get on the Prophet 115 - I'm assuming that the ride would be similar.
post #29 of 49
Thread Starter 
 I am sorry to see the Mothership is not in Line's 2011 offering -- almost makes me want to buy a spare pair and put them in storage.  They must be thinking the Prophet 115 will fill that niche, but the construction looks identical to the 90/100 models, which are much lighter and less beefy skis than the Mothership.  When I skied the P100 a couple years back, I found it wasn't that great on hard snow, and was a bit of a handful in bumps.  One of the things I like about the Mothership is that it's surprisingly good on hard snow and groomers at high speed, and nimbler than expected in bumps.  Be interesting to see reports trickle in on the P115.
post #30 of 49
skier219,

When checking out the blog from NewSchooler's web site they had a video with Line's Pres and when going through next years line they showed the Mo Ship...  No changes except for a really nice clean looking top sheet...

Buckeye
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