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  1. #101
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    Mantra 102 - where to mount it?

    Finally got a chance to ski these today at Blackcomb. I was on the 184. Very much agree with what has been stated here. Stable and strong, but easy to break loose, especially in soft, variable snow off piste. Not as demanding As I thought it might be. Impressed with the multi-radius sidecut. I think I need a pair.

    My buddy (6’2”, 200-lbs) who normally skis a 187 Bonafide skied the 191. He was amazed how manageable they were. He thought they felt shorter than his Bonafides...except for very tight trees. He agrees with my assessment...very stable but not punishing. Rewards solid technique and is tremendously versatile in all kinds of conditions. He wants the 191’s.
    In constant pursuit of the perfect slarve...

  2. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bandit Man View Post
    Impressed with the multi-radius sidecut.
    Let's chat this out. This is my first ski with a variable sidecut. (I don't even know what that means in real life.) It's hard to understand the physics behind a short radius underfoot and a longer radius in the tips & tails. I can't see that shape in my head.

    But when I ski it's just so easy. At low/medium speeds I can just throw my ankle to the side and get a short radius arc. Like a little mini GS ski. But when I decide to rip the face apart, that short radius isn't there anymore. Usually on a ski that is easy to zipper at lower speeds I feel the ski is being out-skied at high speeds. That isn't the case with this sidecut.

    I don't know what that means. And I can't understand how a ski can do both medium speeds with quick arcs and high speeds with long arcs.

    In reality, I guess the underfoot just kind of "misses out" on the long radius/high speed turns... and maybe that's where the speed limit is... all while hidden by tip/tail engagement.

  3. #103
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    In my mind, it makes them not hooky whatsoever and allows a varied radius turn. Skiing is believing. If you love that locked in feeling, these aren’t the ski. Good edge hold, but not locked into a given radius. Similar to the OG Cochise (or at least that is the closest comparison I can see), but a different feeling for how the ski behaves. Skis like a substantial ski but without any punishing attributes. The Blister Review is pretty accurate on these, IMO.
    In constant pursuit of the perfect slarve...

  4. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bandit Man View Post
    In my mind, it makes them not hooky whatsoever and allows a varied radius turn. Skiing is believing. If you love that locked in feeling, these aren’t the ski. Good edge hold, but not locked into a given radius. Similar to the OG Cochise (or at least that is the closest comparison I can see), but a different feeling for how the ski behaves. Skis like a substantial ski but without any punishing attributes. The Blister Review is pretty accurate on these, IMO.
    Have you skied the mindbender 108? Looking for a good comparison of the two.

  5. #105
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    Mantra 102 - where to mount it?

    Quote Originally Posted by CaliBrit View Post
    Have you skied the mindbender 108? Looking for a good comparison of the two.
    Unfortunately I have not. I was hoping to back to back those two skis yesterday but the MB 108 was out all day.
    In constant pursuit of the perfect slarve...

  6. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bandit Man View Post
    Unfortunately I have not. I was hoping to back to back those two skis yesterday but the MB 108 was out all day.
    Ahhh shame. I mean I’ve disliked K2 for so long but all opinions seem to be good.

  7. #107
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    I skied the Mindbender 108ti (18x?) last spring on slush and refrozen slush. I was surprised at how well it skied those conditions and said at the time that it would be my next ski. And if it were cheaper than my M102, I might have purchased it.

    That said, the M102 has a quieter tip, smoother arcs and has a damper metal feel. The 108ti released easier and had a softer tip and is therefore probably better than the M102 in the deep, but that's just speculation for me.

    Both are good skis. The Völkl feels more durable but who knows.

  8. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaijin View Post
    I skied the Mindbender 108ti (18x?) last spring on slush and refrozen slush. I was surprised at how well it skied those conditions and said at the time that it would be my next ski. And if it were cheaper than my M102, I might have purchased it.

    That said, the M102 has a quieter tip, smoother arcs and has a damper metal feel. The 108ti released easier and had a softer tip and is therefore probably better than the M102 in the deep, but that's just speculation for me.

    Both are good skis. The Völkl feels more durable but who knows.
    Thanks for that. I may just buy the mindbenders and be the tgr guinea pig. Not many reviews in real conditions except blister.

  9. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaliBrit View Post
    Thanks for that. I may just buy the mindbenders and be the tgr guinea pig. Not many reviews in real conditions except blister.
    My take is that if you're getting a deal on it, you probably won't regret the purchase. If you're building a quiver and want the cusp of 2020 design to last you 10+ years, you might want to look at the M102. But I have absolutely no history to articulate why the K2 won't also last 10 years.

    I don't think the K2 is easier or more forgiving, per se, but I do think the Volkl is more ski.

  10. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaijin View Post
    My take is that if you're getting a deal on it, you probably won't regret the purchase. If you're building a quiver and want the cusp of 2020 design to last you 10+ years, you might want to look at the M102. But I have absolutely no history to articulate why the K2 won't also last 10 years.

    I don't think the K2 is easier or more forgiving, per se, but I do think the Volkl is more ski.
    Yeah I found a killer deal. Can’t get them shipped though so might be over it.

  11. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by roQer View Post
    First day on a Mantra 102 in 184. All kinds of snow from blank ice to powder. Those are my impressions:

    1) It’s an excellent ski but it has in this length for me definitely a lower top end than OG Cochise in 193, OG Bodacious in 186, OG metal Katana in 191, Kästle BMX 105 HP in 189 and Faction Dictator 4.0 in 192, all of them I still own or recently owned.
    2) Thus it‘s not some ballistic missile as Blister and some other reports suggest. In fact it’s very pivoty and quite easy to ski. Reminds me pretty much of my Rustler 11 in terms of accessibility. As with OG metal Katana and OG Cochise any turn shape is possible but with the Mantra you get more energy from the turn than from those both.
    3) If you’re used to more centered mounts go at least 1 or 2 cm forward. The tail is softer than expected and provides not much support, much less than OG Bodacious (with a very similar mount point) or OG metal Katana. The ski responds very well to a more centered stance and I assume going +2 would make it better balanced.
    4) If you’re a strong skier don’t listen to Blister and downsize if between the sizes. I really wish I had gone 191 instead of 184. Maybe it gets better if I remount the binding at +1.5 or +2.

    In summary: nice but not a variable conditions charger revelation which for I hoped. Gonna keep my OG metal Katanas as there is still no replacement in sight.
    Honestly based on the other skis you normally use, it's not surprising that a smaller ski was less stable than you expected. It seems like you are solidly in the pick-the-bigger-ski camp and not between sizes at all. I also don't think going forward will get you what you want at all. If anything that will make it ski even shorter and less stable.

  12. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaijin View Post
    My take is that if you're getting a deal on it, you probably won't regret the purchase. If you're building a quiver and want the cusp of 2020 design to last you 10+ years, you might want to look at the M102. But I have absolutely no history to articulate why the K2 won't also last 10 years.

    I don't think the K2 is easier or more forgiving, per se, but I do think the Volkl is more ski.
    I think I’m down to the m102 or next years bodacious. Less out there on the blizzard but what there is is very encouraging.

  13. #113
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    Any feedback from people mounting +1 or +2 on these or is the accepted wisdom still that's stupid?

    Looking at the 191 and was thinking a -9 or -10-ish mount might help keep me from blowing up when I land on my tails because I'm bad at drops. Don't think I need the ski to feel quicker particularly.

  14. #114
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    Quote Originally Posted by DumbIdeasOnly View Post
    Any feedback from people mounting +1 or +2 on these or is the accepted wisdom still that's stupid?

    Looking at the 191 and was thinking a -9 or -10-ish mount might help keep me from blowing up when I land on my tails because I'm bad at drops. Don't think I need the ski to feel quicker particularly.
    I wouldn’t say that mounting at +1 or +2 is stupid. My M102 in 184 is mounted at recommended and I don’t like it there very much. No problems on groomers and in consistent snow but in variable shit fuck where I’m getting occasionally out of balance I wish I had more tail. 184 could be to short for me, though, so I might overpower the ski. On a 191 I would definitely go at least +1.
    In the past I went +2 on all my Völkls (2x metal Katana & 1x V-Werks Katana, all in 191) and never regretted doing so.

  15. #115
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    After a quick 2-hour jaunt on the 184 this past weekend, I saw no need to deviate from the suggested mount point, however, that is a very limited sample size. Also, other than when I was in tight trees, I thought I could size up.

    Weird how the ski hand flexes quite stiff, but doesn’t ski as stiff as one would think, at least IMO.
    In constant pursuit of the perfect slarve...

  16. #116
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    Quote Originally Posted by roQer View Post
    ... On a 191 I would definitely go at least +1. In the past I went +2 on all my Völkls (2x metal Katana & 1x V-Werks Katana, all in 191) and never regretted doing so.
    Again, I started this thread with that very question given my similar experience with both versions of Katanas and multiple Mantras. If I had to do it all over again I would mount it right where I did - on the line. If there is consensus on anything in this thread it's that the M102 is nothing like the Katanas and previous Mantras.
    Who cares how the crow flies

  17. #117
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    Just bought a M102 in a 184cm and am headed to Revelstoke next week. Been a while since I've been on a Volkl and never been to Revy... Excited to let fly on some vert! Enablers in this thread I say!
    Last edited by singlecross; 02-22-2020 at 08:17 PM.

  18. #118
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    I hand flexed, fondled a pair of M102s in a whitefish shop last week. I was smitten. Cool to read everyone's thoughts in this thread. So, would the M102 be a proper way to retire my beloved OG black buddah 183 gotamas? Carry forward some of the DNA?

  19. #119
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    Mantra 102 - where to mount it?

    Dude, read the first page of this thread. “The Mantra 102 should have been called the Gotama 2.”

    It’s sad, in a way, but yes— this is the ski that replaces our OG Buddha Gotama.

  20. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaijin View Post
    Dude, read the first page of this thread. “The Mantra 102 should have been called the Gotama 2.”
    Agree with that. Marketing wise M102 is flying completely under radar here. All the shop dudes don’t even know M102 exists what I learned when I tried to get a demo ski.
    You see tons of M5 over here but never saw another M102.
    Mantra(M5)-Gotama(M102)-Katana(K108) would be much more consistent with the history of Völkls freeride line.

  21. #121
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    Quote Originally Posted by roQer View Post
    Agree with that. Marketing wise M102 is flying completely under radar here. All the shop dudes don’t even know M102 exists what I learned when I tried to get a demo ski.
    You see tons of M5 over here but never saw another M102.
    Mantra(M5)-Gotama(M102)-Katana(K108) would be much more consistent with the history of Völkls freeride line.
    Man I’m going to end up buying it. Then I’ll do the enforcer 110, M102, mindbender 99 shootout. Donations appreciated

  22. #122
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    Quote Originally Posted by gaijin View Post
    Dude, read the first page of this thread. “The Mantra 102 should have been called the Gotama 2.”

    It’s sad, in a way, but yes— this is the ski that replaces our OG Buddha Gotama.
    Before skiing it and only handling it on the wall, I completely disagreed with this comment. After spending time on them, it does SKI much more like a next Gen Gotama despite very different design characteristics.
    In constant pursuit of the perfect slarve...

  23. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaliBrit View Post
    Man I’m going to end up buying it. Then I’ll do the enforcer 110, M102, mindbender 99 shootout. Donations appreciated
    Yep, I'm bringing my Enforcer 110 and the new M102 to Revy... will be interesting to see which gets skied more. I have a feeling that mountain will be able to separate the wheat from the chaff.

  24. #124
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    Mantra 102 - where to mount it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bandit Man View Post
    Before skiing it and only handling it on the wall, I completely disagreed with this comment. After spending time on them, it does SKI much more like a next Gen Gotama despite very different design characteristics.
    I don’t know how Völkl guys did this but M102 pivots very much like a subtle fully rockered Katana or Gotama having actually a good amount of camber. Also very similar to a Rustler 11/OG Cochise which are basically flat under the binding. Those who know recognize this feeling immediately after first few turns.

  25. #125
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    To the engineers out there: the beam load chart that shows up in this thread in tapatalk (couldn’t locate in thread)...

    Is it to be assumed the geometric center of any beam is the best mount point, or is it to be assumed the factory recommended mount point is in fact the location based on construction, and one should not deviate from it if they want the best performance?


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