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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    157

    Touring for turns ski for the alps. Mantra V-Works or BMT90?

    150lbs soaking wet, doing day tours in the alps (typically 1500-2000m of climbing) on tele bindings, got to do double duty for winter and spring conditions. I've been skiing the Dynastar Mythic 177 this year (Last years version, not the new softer CA version). This performed well in powder and steep icy slopes, but I haven't gelled with it. I feel like you need to get over the tips to get it to turn consistantly and being on tele bindings it just seems to like arcing big turns at speed. Quite stable for the weight and great in wide open spaces but just too much hard work when I slow it down in the trees or when conditions get a bit grabby / variable. I felt like it was hard to flex the body of the ski (tip fairly soft, but underfoot was super stiff for my 150lbs to flex). I also found that huge tip would hook up in the variable.

    So I'm going to sell them on and try something else and my shortlist is probably:

    Volkl Mantra V-Werks 178 - looks good on paper but I've not found any reviews that I'd trust.
    Fischer Ranger 98 ti - great reviews & good value. A touch heavy and not sure on size (I'd normally shoot for 174-178 range).
    Volkl BMT 90 - Getting a bit narrow nto enjoy the soft stuff? Too light to enjoy the down or a good option?
    Salomon MTN Explore 95 - I have tried the Salomons in a shorter length and enjoyed them but they have a mounting plate which may not align with my binding.

    Any thought on the above, or other suggestions? - in particular has anyone been on the Volkl Mantra V-Works or BMT90s?

    Skis in my quiver that I enjoy:
    Nordica Enforcer 100 (177) - Everyday resort
    Praxis Freeride (174) - Rocks and everyday resort
    DPS L120 Hybrid (~2010) (178) - Deep snow touring
    Praxis GPO (180) - A little too much ski but I take it out when skiing bigger / more open stuff.

    Ta.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    497
    I've toured on the BMT 94 since it came out. Probably 40 days or so. Really like it, good float for pow, maneuverable at slow speeds, easy to jump turn, stable (for their weight) at speed. And the longish tr makes them un-hooky. I'm 190/83 and on the 186s.

    I planned to upgrade to the BMT 90s, since I thought I wanted a slightly narrower, shorter, turnier, lighter ski for spring skiing, and demo'ed the 90s. I skied them on a crappy day, with very gloppy snow. Had to ski from my heels, and it felt like the 90s tail had far less support than the 94s.

    I'd demo, or consider getting a pair of used 94s.
    Last edited by sf; 03-17-2019 at 02:44 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    FR&CH
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    113
    I have the BMT 94 and also like it for spring and second the maneuverability at low speed. They're even good enough inbouds on slopes, when riding them for lift accessed touring. I'm 179cm / 69kg and ski the 176 with Ion.

    I'd love to try / upgrade to the Mantra V Werks next year though as they seem more burly and I don't do super long touring days and most of my touring is from the lifts.
    I'm even considering selling the BMT 94 to get the Mantra V Werks later but not sure yet.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Swiss alps
    Posts
    442
    If the Vwerks mantra is as good as the vwerks katana Id say go for it... if you can find an affordable one.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
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    FR&CH
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    Paul Bonhomme at the Dent Blanche with the Mantra V Werks. I know that kind of video is useless to get a clue of how it skis but fun to watch

    http://www.facebook.com/PaulBonhom/v...4992955563679/

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Winthrop, WA. Methow valley
    Posts
    742
    My spring ski is a BMT94 and I can't say enough good about it. Last year I took one groomer (rained on, refrozen, bulletproof) run on the Vwerks mantra and came away stunned at how nice a ski it was in those conditions. Could happily use it as an inbound, low tide board. I suspect it would be a nice, though heavy, touring ski. If you are interested in the Vwerks mantra but want something more touring weight you should look straight at the VTA98. Very similar rocker profile to the M5 and Vwerks mantras, and skis like a lighter version of both. Again, on the same bulletproof groomers the had better edge grip than any other touring ski that both my wife and I tried (same with the VTA108). In terms of edge grip they were in another class above the Mtn Explore 95 and G3 SEEKr 100, and better than many of the inbounds skis we tried. The only other touring ski that was close in terms of confident grip was the Backland 95

    The VTA's don't get near the attention they deserve

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    157
    Thanks for the feedback - I'm a bit gutted to have missed the BMT94 - sounds like a great option, but the newer 90 just looks a bit more hard snow orientated / turny. Does anyone have any direct experience with the BMT90?

    I was on 174 Freerides which felt like a good length and use 177 Enforcers in the resort. So depending on how long they ski I could probably go 170 or 178 in the Volkls. Any thoughts on how long the VTA and Mantra V-Werks ski?

    Interestingly the 170 Mantra VW is not far off the 177 VTA in weight.... so would you consider a shorter length mantra over a longer VTA? Obviously there are benefits to going shorter for kickturns etc...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Winthrop, WA. Methow valley
    Posts
    742
    gritter,

    The BMT 90,, VTA98 and Vwerks Mantra all have a very similar rocker profile. The latter two also flex very similarly and although I've never actually laid hands on one I suspect the BMT is also very similar. Pretty strong skis. I'm 5'11' and in the vicinity of 220lb and both the 184 VTA98 and 178 Vwerks held up just fine on bulletproof. I wouldn't be to concerned about sizing down on any of these for touring. A 170 Vwerks mantra would be a super cool touring ski.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    83
    Quote Originally Posted by stuntmanbo View Post
    I'm even considering selling the BMT 94 to get the Mantra V Werks later but not sure yet.
    I'm interested in some of the same skis as the OP. Let me know if you decide to move on from your BMT 94s (ideally, I'd be interested in them without the Ions). I defer to the OP if you decide to sell and he's interested.

    Thanks for the info from those of you who have skied on the BMT, VTA, Mantra, etc.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    FR&CH
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    I'm in Europe, reading the thread I think gritter is too ?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    592
    I've owned both the BMT94 (sold before using - had to liqudate some cash) and v-werks Mantra (own, but have not used) and neither is very stiff when hand flexed imo. I was very surprised at how the Mantra flexed to be honest - I thought they would be stiffer then they turned out to be. Mantra VWs are nowhere near m5 stiffness imo, though they are probably very supportive for their weight.

    That being said - BMT94s and Mantra VWs are very different skis. One is a slim full rocker, the other is a cambered ski with much wider tips and tails. Personally I prefer BMT94s as a concept for across multiple backcountry conditions (slimmer shape = slices through stuff real well), but having never tried either it is hard to provide any meaningful feedback. Sport Bittl still have 90s and 94s in stock, if perhaps not in your length: https://www.sport-bittl.com/search.php?query=BMT

    To the OP - I would 100% get Mantras over BMT90s if you plan to charge. BMT90s seem a kind of water down 94, modified for better touring (flat and uphill) while giving up some downhill prowess. I would not size down with either as both are so traditionally mounted that their fairly short tails will not be an issue while touring imo and the longer length will both improve soft snow performance and provide more stability at speed.

    For reference - I am 175 and sported/sport 176/178s.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    157
    @kkashkooli & stuntmanbo - if you guys want to strike a deal then go ahead. I think I'll probably go for the mantra.
    @kidkapaow - that's useful info - I'm 30lbs less than you though so if you are on the 178s then perhaps the 170s are about right....

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    592
    my appologies for being a bit unclear - I am 175cm tall, weighing about 70kg/155lbs.

    I would recommend 178s, but I might be too geared toward the skis doubling up as occasional resort chargers. That might also be why I thought that the V Werks would be a fair bit stiffer than they turned out to be. Their on snow flex might be very, very different than how they hand flex (like Rustler11s that hand flex soft, but charge none the less).

    I like the design concept of the Mantra V Werks alot. Pairing carbon with titanal for a ski that is light enough, yet can charge is a really good idea imho. Sure, an even lighter ski is nice when going uphill, but at 1630gr in 178 they are pretty light, yet still packs enough of a punch to be able to handle a wide range of conditions on the down. Their main issue - like all light weight touring skis - is that they are a bit on the brittle side of things and respond unfavourably to encounters with rocks, but then again - most skis do not respond well to encounters with rocks either.

    If you plan on using them for multiple day trips and whatnot, 170s might be the way to go. I bought some Praxis EXPs in 173 for that use that should be only a smidge longer than Mantras in 170. For going up to charge on the way down - 178s.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    157
    ^^ Thanks for that.
    I'm actually reassured to hear that it's not insanely stiff - A lot of lighter skis seem to be using stiffness to compensate for lack of weight in an attempt to make the ski stable at speed and IMHO it makes them very intolerant to slowing things down a bit (perhaps this is exaggerated by a reduced ability to drive the tips on tele). My Mythics are the stiffest ski that I own underfoot and that just doesn't fit well with skiing in the trees or other places where you might want to slow it down a bit. For this sort of skiing my Enforcers are much more mellow (but at ~2.1kg I'm not going to tour very far on them).
    If I could get something close to the Enforcers but 4-500g lighter then I'd be happy.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    FR&CH
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    @Kid Kapow, how is the flex of the Mantra VW vs the BMT 94 ?

    I agree about the carbon ti construction, I’d love to see a Katana VW with a layer of titanal.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    592
    Stuntmanbo - it has been >6months since I sold my BMT94s, but I think MVWs are ever so slightly stiffer. I would not quote me on it though as I have been fondling skis that are a lot stiffer as of late, so my recollection might be all outta whack.

    Again, I have not skied either, so I have no idea how they compare when on snow.

    A BMT94 in similar updated v-werks construction including Titanal would be very interesting to try imo. The straighter shape of BMTs with full rocker makes a ton of sense in lots of snow conditions, even if camber will increase a skis walkability and hard snow grip.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Sun Valley, ID
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    1,584
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Thomas View Post
    My spring ski is a BMT94 and I can't say enough good about it. Last year I took one groomer (rained on, refrozen, bulletproof) run on the Vwerks mantra and came away stunned at how nice a ski it was in those conditions. Could happily use it as an inbound, low tide board. I suspect it would be a nice, though heavy, touring ski. If you are interested in the Vwerks mantra but want something more touring weight you should look straight at the VTA98. Very similar rocker profile to the M5 and Vwerks mantras, and skis like a lighter version of both. Again, on the same bulletproof groomers the had better edge grip than any other touring ski that both my wife and I tried (same with the VTA108). In terms of edge grip they were in another class above the Mtn Explore 95 and G3 SEEKr 100, and better than many of the inbounds skis we tried. The only other touring ski that was close in terms of confident grip was the Backland 95

    The VTA's don't get near the attention they deserve
    Interesting. VTA98 is a good weight too, 1440 in 184.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    157
    Ordered some 178 Mantras VWs to fondle (no ski shops locally) They look nice - have a substantial feel but not crazy stiff like the Mythics. They are long though - they measure 179 with a straight pull (the same as my 182 GPOs) so I'm thinking I may go for the 170 length on the assumption that they are closer to 173/174 and that might be a touch easier in tight spots + I save a bit of weight and have a shorter tail.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    592
    FriFlyt - my local mag - disagreed with me and found both BMT90s and BMT94s to be stiffer than the V-Werks (if I understand their metric correctly). Go figure eh - though, if one hand flexes them in the center then that kinda would make some sense in a weird way.

    https://www.skitest.com/Ski/Voelkl-BMT-94
    https://www.skitest.com/Ski/Voelkl-Mantra-V-Werks
    https://www.skitest.com/Ski/Voelkl-BMT-90
    (all the skis they've tested, not all translated: https://www.skitest.com/skilist/ski-tested )

    Other than the technical data their tests are somewhat worthless imo. From the tests I've seen and their findings over time they seem very prone to cognitive biases and strong user preferences as a guide to ski evaluation, as well as testing each ski a fairly short time and not always across conditions. Oh well, there's always stuff to be gleaned from these kinds of test regardless.

    And yes - sorry - forgot that you were one tele bindings. Is a size shorter then the norm, or what? Not that 178s should be a handful regardless

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    157
    I'm not aware of any particular bias with people skiing tele on shorter skis (in fact if anything the opposite). I'm 172 and my existing skis range from 172 - 180 (straight pull). The 178's just measured really long - 179 straight pull. If the 170 measures long as well then they would probably be close to a 174 which would still be ~my height.
    I've stolen my GF's 169 MTN Explore 95s for a trip in a weeks time so I'm going to see how I get on with them lengthwise.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Posts
    113
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post
    And yes - sorry - forgot that you were one tele bindings. Is a size shorter then the norm, or what?
    Not the norm, but (all things being equal) typically people ski slower on tele bindings, which lends itself to having a shorter ski. It is also much more of a two footed turn, and so you don't decamber a ski as easily as you do with fixed heels. The difference is pretty small though, so most people will be on the same size for both. If I locked it down, my skis would all be the same length as they are now, though I would have given the 189 wren96 some more serious consideration (probably ultimately ending up on the 184, which I have currently). For touring a size (or two) shorter is definitely the norm though.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    592
    thanks for the clarification on tele. Being from Scandiland I guess I should have known, but alas - my tele career was pretty short lived

    I have sized down for my narrow, long trip touring skis, but everything else I run more or less the same lenghtwise (178-181 range - straight pull measurement).

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    $teaux
    Posts
    1,079
    I currently own and ski both 178 v werks mantra and 177 bmt 90 . Not tele, lighter tech bindings (solly mtn on vwerk, ssl2.0 on bmt). Clearly you’ve gotten a bunch of input on this thread. Happy to chime in if you have specific unanswered questions, just pm me.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Squaw valley
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    2,546
    Quote Originally Posted by rangerjake View Post
    I currently own and ski both 178 v werks mantra and 177 bmt 90 . Not tele, lighter tech bindings (solly mtn on vwerk, ssl2.0 on bmt). Clearly you’ve gotten a bunch of input on this thread. Happy to chime in if you have specific unanswered questions, just pm me.
    I weigh 175 lbs and i ski the 184 vwerks katanas

    Do you think the 178 mantra will be stable enough at speed?

    Sent from my Armor_3 using Tapatalk

  25. #25
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    Mar 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by rod9301 View Post
    I weigh 175 lbs and i ski the 184 vwerks katanas

    Do you think the 178 mantra will be stable enough at speed?

    Sent from my Armor_3 using Tapatalk
    I also have the 184 v werks katana. I weigh a few lbs less than you. I have the 178 vw mantra. "stable enough" is a subjective statement. I don't know what speeds you are hoping for stability at. Likewise how stable it feels is a product of what boot you drive the ski with. I have used both TLT6s and Hawx XTD 120s with my vw mantras and vw katanas. How stable they feel changes very much depending on the boots I have on at the time.

    What I can tell you is that the 184 katana is on par with the 178 mantra. And the 191 katana would be on par with the 186 mantra. If you find your Katanas to be just right for you and want the mantra to be a good complimentary ski: quicker turns, better hard snow grip then you will def want the shorter one. I have never felt the mantra was lacking in stability, and though I have wished it was a touch longer at times- mostly for floatation in moderate powder- I solved this by mounting at -1.

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