Originally Posted by ski=free
Ok, here is the challenge. Find Mantras for under 450 (new) and jesters for under 150. It just doesn't happen. Of course you can find skis for short money but they usually aren't top of the line stuff. Like Mantras or hate them you cannot find them cheap, period. According to people here I can get that set up for 300 bucks new so it shouldn't be that hard.
Last 2 Mantra I purchased where $400 in wrapper. One was from Tramdock and one was from eBay (East Coast shop). There are some Best offer new Mantra 184cm on ebay right now. $450 would be a reasonable offer.
Why are you focused on the Jester? There are plenty of good 14+ bindings. There is a new PX14 w/ 100mm brake, perfect for the Mantra, that is sitting in the TGR's gear swap. I bought a pair of 14 din binding w/ 115mm brakes off the guy for my wife. If I did not have a pair of PX15 w/ 100mm brakes from tramdock sitting in the garage I would have gotten the PX14 too.
Search on Mojo 15 and Peak 15. Tyrolia's tends to go much cheaper than they should. While Marker Jesters are a little over priced right now. Dukes are probably about right (expensive) given the capabilities.
(New Mojo 15 for $170 5 seconds with google)
I have Mantra with 60 days on them and they are starting to give out. Probably dead in 20 more days. Right now I can feel the loss in Torsional stiffness. (This is why have 2 Mantra for $400) I'm heavy, ski on the fast side and like to load up my skis. YMMV....
You asked for input. It seems like people think it is bad deal.
My new Mantra setup will have hardware cost of $520(new Mantra and new PX15). So you looking at saving about 33% for getting well used skis and bindings. If you need skis now, that might be worth it. Otherwise keep the money in your pocket. Start looking for skis with 10-20 days (~$300 for skis) on them or pickup close outs in Apr.
If the deal seems right, than buy the ski and go skiing. Do not ask for approval from a bunch of internet know-it-alls.