Results 1 to 23 of 23
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2019
    Posts
    85

    Does the DPS Koala 103 suck?

    Super intrigued by this ski but aside from the blister homies I canít find much reliable info. Anyone have some insight on them? On paper they are exactly what Iím looking for but Iíve never skied a DPS ski so Iím hesitant to blindly pull the triggerÖ

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    no, they are great.

    That is, if you like a ski that is relatively stiff - both torsionally and lengthwise, is not too heavy, and that doesn't have metal. They are fun on and off le groomers. They are a very logical ski as a narrower koala - aka a ski that is meant to progressively mounted and is to be used to ski fast and hard. Their relative lower weight and stiff flex favor a stronger skier if you want to hatefuck variable, they do not do all the work for you like a heavier ski would. Awesome shape though.

    The only issues I have with my pair is that a) they are DPS and b) I will most likely keep my woodsman102s of the two.

    I prefer 184 K103s to both 182 MF99s and 182 MF108s, which says a lot as I really like both those skis. I would happily ski a K103s as my narrower ski in a two ski quiver, and would not mind a Koala119 being the wider - both are awesome.
    Last edited by kid-kapow; 01-19-2023 at 02:26 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    Posts
    227
    No experience with the 103 but the fat version (OG 119) definitely doesnít suck. Neither did the Lotus 124 until last year or the dearly departed Lotus 120 and various Spoons.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    monument
    Posts
    6,379
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post
    no, they are great.

    That is, if you like a ski that is relatively stiff - both torsionally and lengthwise, is not too heavy, and that doesn't have metal. They are fun on and off le groomers. They are a very logical ski as a narrower koala - aka a ski that is meant to progressively mounted and is to be used to ski fast and hard. Their relative lower weight and stiff flex favor a stronger skier if you want to hatefuck variable, they do not do all the work for you like a heavier ski would. Awesome shape though.

    The only issues I have with my pair is that a) they are DPS and b) I will most likely keep my woodsman102s of the two.

    I prefer 184 K103s to both 182 MF99s and 182 MF108s, which says a lot as I really like both those skis. I would happily ski a K103s as my narrower ski in a two ski quiver, and would not mind a Koala119 being the wider - both are awesome.
    Need to ski my Koala 119 more.
    (Or sell it).

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    Quote Originally Posted by pfluffenmeister View Post
    Need to ski my Koala 119 more.
    I found it really interesting that Paul Forward - aka Blister's resident AK heliguide and MD - listed the K119 as his wider pick in a two ski quiver (in one of Blister's podcasts), for use both in resorts and while guiding. That made me have identical thoughts to what you mention in the quote.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    2,071
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post
    no, they are great.

    That is, if you like a ski that is relatively stiff - both torsionally and lengthwise, is not too heavy, and that doesn't have metal. They are fun on and off le groomers. They are a very logical ski as a narrower koala - aka a ski that is meant to progressively mounted and is to be used to ski fast and hard. Their relative lower weight and stiff flex favor a stronger skier if you want to hatefuck variable, they do not do all the work for you like a heavier ski would. Awesome shape though.

    The only issues I have with my pair is that a) they are DPS and b) I will most likely keep my woodsman102s of the two.

    I prefer 184 K103s to both 182 MF99s and 182 MF108s, which says a lot as I really like both those skis. I would happily ski a K103s as my narrower ski in a two ski quiver, and would not mind a Koala119 being the wider - both are awesome.
    How does the K103 compare with the WD102? Specifically when it's firm.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    Quote Originally Posted by thejongiest View Post
    How does the K103 compare with the WD102? Specifically when it's firm.
    That question is to be decided as I have not skid them back to back. I just remounted my wd102 at +1 post a retune yesterday, and will not be able to ski either this weekend.

    I do not really expect to find too major differences tbh - other than a slight difference in balance point within the turn (k103's front camber is longer) and that wd102s will be a tad looser and float better in soft snow (longer front rocker and more splay). I also think that wd102s will be a tad more forgiving in variable due to their slightly softer flex. My wd102s are 50/50 layups though, so not a "true" wd102 vs k103 comparison.

    I have found ON3Ps to be no better or worse than comparable skis on firm snow. Sure, they are not terribly inspiring carvers on ice, but then again they are not meant to be.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    two more days in on the koala103s and I must admit to liking them now more than ever. I already thought well of them in soft snow. The conditions here have been awful the last two days, aka soft snow turned into refrozen crap after tons of rain and above zero temps, where the snow has only marginally been made more skiable by grooming. So crap snow. Sure, they did not feel as solid on edge as the Bonafide97s I skied them b2bk with yesterday, but they feel more than solid enough on edge. They feel better than bonafides everywhere else for how I ski. I really like them.

    The promised comparison to woods102s is still pending as the shop that tuned them for me did not do a good job. They feel base high and ski like snowlerblades - especially the left ski/inside edge, very different to woods110s that I skied the k103s b2b with today that worked well.

    The real question for me is just how many other skis my koala103s can make surplus to requirements. I took a few runs on the koala119s today too - if just for shits and giggles (as the conditions are very much not playing to their strengths) - and they worked fine as well, if a bit lethargic from edge to edge.

    Dammit, I am supposed to hate DPS, but the Koalas are just very enjoyable skis for those who like stiff skis with fairly progressive mount points.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2018
    Posts
    227
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post

    Dammit, I am supposed to hate DPS, but the Koalas are just very enjoyable skis for those who like stiff skis with fairly progressive mount points.
    That jives with my experience of the 119 189. The 189 is a heavy and stiff ski that seems designed around a more progressive style than most comparably heavy and stiff skis.

    Also seems like being tuned like shit out of the wrapper is very much part of the DPS brand. Hoping I get to use the 119 this year with the fixed tune.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    man, Koala119s are freaking great. Sure, they are really, really stiff - but one can just ski soooo fast on them. Variable or stuff in the way, no matter - just go straight on through.

    Koala119s are so fun to ski that they make me curious to try their slightly softer little brother aka the Koala118s.
    Blister’s Measured Dimensions K119: 145.2-118.5-130.9 mm
    Blister’s Measured Dimensions K118: 144.9-119.6-134.3 mm
    Kinda weird naming convention, but a 120 might sound more intimidating to some skiers than 118 - who knows.

    hm, the tune on my k119s x2 and koala 103s have been fine, so to my Lotus117. The Lotus124s the 117s replaced where not up to scruff, though the tune was not their issues.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    I've been fortunate enough to spend the last three days on Koala119 184s, and my main take away is that I cannot understand that this ski is not a bigger deal here on TGR as it seems to tick so many boxes (stiff, heavy, long sidecut, did I mention stiff and heavy?). K119s are just freaking great. They quickly took the spot my upuntilthen beloved Dynastar PR-OTO had as the perfect ski to compliment my much adored ON3P BGs.

    My main "criticism" of / thing I would want improved on the koala103 is that the core feels different to the K119. As such, I wish DPS would add the poplar+bamboo mix to it too, and not a full poplar wood core like they're supposed to have now (I know the DPS webpage states differently aka it already has the poplar+bamboo mix, but it doesn't feel like it). Making the K103 a tad heavier and damper would make it pure magic, and would arguably makes sense given their already stiff flex.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2023
    Posts
    15
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post
    my main take away is that I cannot understand that this ski is not a bigger deal here on TGR as it seems to tick so many boxes (stiff, heavy, long sidecut, did I mention stiff and heavy?).
    9 out of 10 dentists do not recommend stiff, heavy skis that could rattle out your fillings

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    Quote Originally Posted by jimbojones View Post
    9 out of 10 dentists do not recommend stiff, heavy skis that WOULD NOT rattle out your fillings
    fixed it for you.

    DPS regular offerings on the other hand

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    monument
    Posts
    6,379
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post
    I've been fortunate enough to spend the last three days on Koala119 184s, and my main take away is that I cannot understand that this ski is not a bigger deal here on TGR as it seems to tick so many boxes (stiff, heavy, long sidecut, did I mention stiff and heavy?). K119s are just freaking great. They quickly took the spot my upuntilthen beloved Dynastar PR-OTO had as the perfect ski to compliment my much adored ON3P BGs.

    My main "criticism" of / thing I would want improved on the koala103 is that the core feels different to the K119. As such, I wish DPS would add the poplar+bamboo mix to it too, and not a full poplar wood core like they're supposed to have now (I know the DPS webpage states differently aka it already has the poplar+bamboo mix, but it doesn't feel like it). Making the K103 a tad heavier and damper would make it pure magic, and would arguably makes sense given their already stiff flex.
    You ever try the 189 119?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    BC
    Posts
    1,676
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post
    I've been fortunate enough to spend the last three days on Koala119 184s, and my main take away is that I cannot understand that this ski is not a bigger deal here on TGR as it seems to tick so many boxes (stiff, heavy, long sidecut, did I mention stiff and heavy?). K119s are just freaking great. They quickly took the spot my upuntilthen beloved Dynastar PR-OTO had as the perfect ski to compliment my much adored ON3P BGs.

    My main "criticism" of / thing I would want improved on the koala103 is that the core feels different to the K119. As such, I wish DPS would add the poplar+bamboo mix to it too, and not a full poplar wood core like they're supposed to have now (I know the DPS webpage states differently aka it already has the poplar+bamboo mix, but it doesn't feel like it). Making the K103 a tad heavier and damper would make it pure magic, and would arguably makes sense given their already stiff flex.
    The K119 is sick. I just think it was a mix of price point, topsheet and dps marketing that didnt really shine there. They also changed it after a season and a half which is never great.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    DPS Koala news for 2024:

    There’s also new news for the Koala freestyle skis: a Golidlocks Koala 111. Slotting between the Koala 103 and Koala 118, the Koala 111 offers a more responsive ride in tight terrain, while floating better and being more stable in choppy conditions.

    Other Highlights

    The Koala 103 recieved an update to the flex, the core, and rocker profile. The 118 remains unchanged.

    edit to add: it turns out that k103s have the same core / construction as the current k118 - so bamboo+poplar+triax glass
    Last edited by kid-kapow; 02-07-2023 at 11:22 AM.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2019
    Posts
    85
    Quote Originally Posted by kid-kapow View Post
    DPS Koala news for 2024:

    Thereís also new news for the Koala freestyle skis: a Golidlocks Koala 111. Slotting between the Koala 103 and Koala 118, the Koala 111 offers a more responsive ride in tight terrain, while floating better and being more stable in choppy conditions.

    Other Highlights

    The Koala 103 recieved an update to the flex, the core, and rocker profile. The 118 remains unchanged.

    edit to add: it turns out that k103s have the same core / construction as the current k118 - so bamboo+poplar+triax glass
    Well damn - thatís an intriguing update. New K103 top sheet is wayyyyy better than the brown/gold motif. Softer Flex is hopefully minimal.

    K111 could be a pretty rad ski if the do it right!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Posts
    35
    Quote Originally Posted by RadSkier_ View Post
    Well damn - that’s an intriguing update. New K103 top sheet is wayyyyy better than the brown/gold motif. Softer Flex is hopefully minimal.

    K111 could be a pretty rad ski if the do it right!
    That ski in the pic might be the K111? I'm afraid the K103 might still carry the same top sheets as before...

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    Quote Originally Posted by ejj View Post
    T I'm afraid the K103 might still carry the same top sheets as before...
    Nein, all Koalas get new graphics. I do not actually mind the current graphics. Sure - they are not the best ever, but look ok on snow imho and the ski is fun, so I do not mind. I am assuming that the depicted ski is the new 111 yes.

    As for the K103 v2 - from DPS: "We pulled up the tips and tails of the 103 a touch to match the rocker profile of the new 111. Tips and tails will also be a touch softer but remains the same underfoot. On the other hand the 118 remains unchanged."

    aka 118 gets new graphics, same construction and shape. Slightly softer tips/tails should add a bit of suspesion, which should in theory make enable the sturdy midsection to shine even more. Will be fun to try.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Canmore
    Posts
    44
    Awesome to hear you are enjoying them - not a lot of intel online about them. How is the edge hold on hard snow? The blister review doesn't seem to jibe with the (albeit limited) amount of description online by folks who own them - am looking at them in a 189 (2022 model) as a lower snow ski to replace some QST106s and sit below a pair of QSTBlanks. Any thoughts on how they stack up to the QST?

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    I've never skied any QSTs, but I've thus far found that the Koala's sturdy torsional flex (from the triaxal fiberglass) gives them more than good enough grip on hard snow compared to similar skis.

    This class of ski will never grip or finish a turn like a flat tailed double titanal freeride ski, but their grip will be more than sufficient for any conditions I actually want to ski. Like, I like to do other things when the option to ski is on blue ice in the rain.

    Slightly softer shovels/tails and more weight would improve their suspension and ability to charge in variable, but they ski decently in their current guise too imho.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Canmore
    Posts
    44
    Makes perfect sense bud - appreciate the insight!

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Posts
    1,948
    so I've skied my k103s a fair bit now across a lot of conditions. I still really like them. They are a shit ton of fun in lighter snow where their supportive tails make them super surfy and fun, but their stiff flex and relative lack of weight (what makes them so fun in lighter snow) makes them a bit less inspiring in denser, heavily tracked snow. Or that was my experience with them yesterday in seriously tracked out, kinda refrozen, kinda sunbaked, kinda slushy, kinda crusty snow. Their stiff flex and relative lack of mass make them deflect rather than push on through, though my lack of technique, speed and stature might be a big factor there as well. I would imagine that the new version will lessen these traits a bit.

    I also have a few days on Koala118 184s now. They ski a fair bit differently than Koala119s, or rather - they are a lot less ski. The tips are noticably lighter and softer, the tails are softer, they do not have the same crazy pop when loaded (good thing) and they should be a lot more approachable to most skiers. They float well, but are also super fun in shallower fresh.

    They were not great at absorbing the aforementioned conditions yesterday, though I suspect that is more just the conditions being difficult, not any fault of the skis. Sure, BGs would probably just hatefuck their way through the same conditions, but then BGs and K118s are not meant to be skied the same way. I am pleasantly surprised by K118s - they are a ton of fun and very easy to ski.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	image0(2).jpg 
Views:	24 
Size:	269.8 KB 
ID:	452424Click image for larger version. 

Name:	image1(2).jpg 
Views:	26 
Size:	294.1 KB 
ID:	452425Click image for larger version. 

Name:	k119.jpg 
Views:	21 
Size:	113.5 KB 
ID:	452428Name:  k103.jpg
Views: 89
Size:  101.0 KB

    The rocker lines are bit deeper up front compared to K118s, so I imagine K103s will get the same front rocker as K118s next season - and not the same as k119s (third picture) re the fourth picture above (k103s).

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •