2021 Kästle MX88 or 83

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David Edwards

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someone in Aspen go investigate;This could be the next great ski to compete against the Stöckli SR88 and the Kästle MX88.
 

Wasatchman

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someone in Aspen go investigate;This could be the next great ski to compete against the Stöckli SR88 and the Kästle MX88.
You should have bought a pair. If the ski is any good you could have contacted them and provided some graphics to order a small run of the Edwards 88. Imagine @markojp and I carrying on like we've been on this thread and you say what's up, forget this nonsense, the Edwards 88 is where it's at bitches

:micdrop:
 
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David Edwards

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Edwards 88 on a pair of skis might not get much attention; People will ask, who is Edwards?
 

Spinning Wheel

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Feel like I am a little late to the party here but for the better part of the past decade I have been a Kästle devotee and last February I got to ski the new MX88 and the outgoing MX89 back-to-back in Jackson Hole. My first pair of Kastles were the MX78 that I bought when I lived back east. A few years later, those were followed by a pair of 2nd gen FX94s which became my daily drivers after moving to Seattle. I've skied those into the ground and while at Jackson, I was told they were basically on life support and they spend 48 hours at Teton Village Sports having some delaminations epoxied. I've been trying to replace them for a couple of years but just haven't found the magic ski.

I have probably skied just about every model of Kästle except for the park skis. I had high hopes for the FX96 but was disappointed with it overall. I won't call it a bad ski, I recognize that I have some very strong opinions of certain skis that many people love, but what was clear was that Kästle had changed the recipe and it no longer suited my taste. I was disappointed to be sure. As a family, we have a garage full of Kastles and we are all fans. I'm not concerned where they are built as long as they are built well, and I could see that they construction of the newer models seemed better constructed than my MX78s which might as well have had top sheets made out of porcelain. I knew the brand feel well, and I liked some aspects of the FX96, but it was just... different, and not for me.

While I had ridden the MX89s on many occasions and alway loved them, I was looking for wider all-mountain ski. I was however very interested in redesigned MX88s after Phil's early word on them after the SIA show in January even they weren't quite what I was looking for. There was a private demo going on while I was in town at Jackson and I spent some time chatting with the Kästle rep who like me was also a fan of the earlier FX94. He told me to come back later in the afternoon and he'd let me take out the new MX88s.

I have to say, I did like them and was a bit relieved about Kästle's overall direction. They skied wonderfully and had that wide sweet spot of capability I've come to enjoy from Kästle. Stable at speed, but still nimble in bumps and tight spaces, balanced and poised with accessible performance. It was not the ski to replace the FX94, but it was a great ski and fun to try. I took them back to the tent and then an interesting thing happened. The rep told me to take out the MX89.

As I said, I've been on the MX89 before, but putting it back to back with the MX88 was eye opening. It's such a different ski. The minor thickness difference in the metal sheets and slightly different geometry make it a more fierce ski. Its more a GS ski, more hungry for speed and happier when it gets it, yet able to smash through crud and dance through bumps. My first run was down Tower 3 Chute and I felt like I was right at home. I got back to the tent and sheepishly told the rep, "I think I might actually like these better". He didn't seem too surprised. He just said, "They're different skis".

And so, I think that's the bottom line. They are both great skis, they will both have their fans, they clearly have common DNA and will each have their fans. Me, and ex-east coast speed demon who's more brute force than finesse... I like the older style. It's certainly not unusual for a company to chase broader appeal for their products and I guess I can't blame Kästle for that. Of all of my skiing friends, I only know two that ski Kästle - a friend who demoed and bought the BMX105 and a guy who bought his wife the LX82, both on my recommendation. They deserve broader success and they are still making a damn good product, even if it doesn't suit me as well anymore. Maybe they could have called the new MX something different and kept the old one, but as simple as that sounds its realistically asking a lot of a company. I'll still look forward to their new models and try them out, and I've already recommended to a couple of friends that they get on the MX88 this season.

As for my FX94s, I came to the realization that there just isn't one pair of skis that will replace them and do everything I want. I hit the late season deals, so in the garage is a new pair of Black Crows Navis (another Jackson demo, and another ski being replaced with a newer model seeking broader appeal) which will be mounted with Salomon Shifts and do double duty as my good snow and backcountry skis. Next to them, for when the snow is not as fresh and the need for speed is a little greater, is a new pair of MX89s.
 

Philpug

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Isn't that guy an ex-Kästle dude? Maybe he approached Miller and said I'll make a ski for you and you can slap on the Miller name.

@Philpug , you ever hear of a private label ski made for a ski shop before?? That's a new one I've never seen. Kästle wouldn't be happy about this I wouldn't think as they are one of their dealers.
Yes I have heard of private brands but it is pretty uncommon in the US market more common in Europe. Blossom has been known to make small batches of skis for private labels. Original+ is not a relabeled Kästle if that is what you are saying.
 

Swede

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Back to the cult following. it reminds my of my days with Subaru. When the square Loyale was introduced in 1985, the purists said "Oh my god, you are ruining Subaru, I will never buy one again"....you know what happened? Sales when up. When the Legacy was introduced in 1990, the purists said "Oh my god, you are ruining Subaru, I will never buy one again"....you know what happened? Sales when up. When the redesign of the Legacy happened in 1994 and the Outback was introduced, the purists said "Oh my god, you are ruining Subaru, I will never buy one again"....you know what happened? Sales when up. the same thing happened in 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, 2014. The cult following does not pay the bills. FWIW, I could replace Subaru with Volvo and Loyale and Legacy with 240, 850, 940 and S60/V70. ;)
Porsche and the Cayenne...
 

Alexzn

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I have been to Miller sports in Aspen (the rented me a demo MX99 which ultimately led to a purchase in Tahoe later that season). This is a Kästle shop in Aspen and Ted Davenport (brother of a Kästle athlete Chris Davenport, and a former WorldTour skier himself) works there. I highly doubt that this particular Miller ski is a rebranded Kästle, as all Kästle skis, including limited editions have the hollowtech tiip. Like all Aspen shops Miller sells high-end gear, but unlike many that sell high-fashion gear, Miller sells high-performance gear. If I lived in Aspen, I would have tried to get to know these guys.
 
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Alexzn

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Feel like I am a little late to the party here but for the better part of the past decade I have been a Kästle devotee and last February I got to ski the new MX88 and the outgoing MX89 back-to-back in Jackson Hole. My first pair of Kastles were the MX78 that I bought when I lived back east. A few years later, those were followed by a pair of 2nd gen FX94s which became my daily drivers after moving to Seattle. I've skied those into the ground and while at Jackson, I was told they were basically on life support and they spend 48 hours at Teton Village Sports having some delaminations epoxied. I've been trying to replace them for a couple of years but just haven't found the magic ski.

I have probably skied just about every model of Kästle except for the park skis. I had high hopes for the FX96 but was disappointed with it overall. I won't call it a bad ski, I recognize that I have some very strong opinions of certain skis that many people love, but what was clear was that Kästle had changed the recipe and it no longer suited my taste. I was disappointed to be sure. As a family, we have a garage full of Kastles and we are all fans. I'm not concerned where they are built as long as they are built well, and I could see that they construction of the newer models seemed better constructed than my MX78s which might as well have had top sheets made out of porcelain. I knew the brand feel well, and I liked some aspects of the FX96, but it was just... different, and not for me.

While I had ridden the MX89s on many occasions and alway loved them, I was looking for wider all-mountain ski. I was however very interested in redesigned MX88s after Phil's early word on them after the SIA show in January even they weren't quite what I was looking for. There was a private demo going on while I was in town at Jackson and I spent some time chatting with the Kästle rep who like me was also a fan of the earlier FX94. He told me to come back later in the afternoon and he'd let me take out the new MX88s.

I have to say, I did like them and was a bit relieved about Kästle's overall direction. They skied wonderfully and had that wide sweet spot of capability I've come to enjoy from Kästle. Stable at speed, but still nimble in bumps and tight spaces, balanced and poised with accessible performance. It was not the ski to replace the FX94, but it was a great ski and fun to try. I took them back to the tent and then an interesting thing happened. The rep told me to take out the MX89.

As I said, I've been on the MX89 before, but putting it back to back with the MX88 was eye opening. It's such a different ski. The minor thickness difference in the metal sheets and slightly different geometry make it a more fierce ski. Its more a GS ski, more hungry for speed and happier when it gets it, yet able to smash through crud and dance through bumps. My first run was down Tower 3 Chute and I felt like I was right at home. I got back to the tent and sheepishly told the rep, "I think I might actually like these better". He didn't seem too surprised. He just said, "They're different skis".

And so, I think that's the bottom line. They are both great skis, they will both have their fans, they clearly have common DNA and will each have their fans. Me, and ex-east coast speed demon who's more brute force than finesse... I like the older style. It's certainly not unusual for a company to chase broader appeal for their products and I guess I can't blame Kästle for that. Of all of my skiing friends, I only know two that ski Kästle - a friend who demoed and bought the BMX105 and a guy who bought his wife the LX82, both on my recommendation. They deserve broader success and they are still making a damn good product, even if it doesn't suit me as well anymore. Maybe they could have called the new MX something different and kept the old one, but as simple as that sounds its realistically asking a lot of a company. I'll still look forward to their new models and try them out, and I've already recommended to a couple of friends that they get on the MX88 this season.

As for my FX94s, I came to the realization that there just isn't one pair of skis that will replace them and do everything I want. I hit the late season deals, so in the garage is a new pair of Black Crows Navis (another Jackson demo, and another ski being replaced with a newer model seeking broader appeal) which will be mounted with Salomon Shifts and do double duty as my good snow and backcountry skis. Next to them, for when the snow is not as fresh and the need for speed is a little greater, is a new pair of MX89s.
My summary of this post: new MX88 is a very very good ski. MX89 is a great ski.
 

Spinning Wheel

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My summary of this post: new MX88 is a very very good ski. MX89 is a great ski.
Well I can't disagree with that summary, but I would not be surprised to find others think the opposite. A certain kind of skier is always going to like the MX89, but the MX88 could find broader appeal. I'll be interested to see what people are saying once the season starts and more folks can try them out.
 

ARL67

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Blossom made a ski for Hart and PM Gear -> the Hart Fuelie Boss and the PM Gear SuperBro

195 SuperBro: 121-91-111 29.4m radius ( a ski where only Bro's need apply )
 

Philpug

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Blossom made a ski for Hart and PM Gear -> the Hart Fuelie Boss and the PM Gear SuperBro

195 SuperBro: 121-91-111 29.4m radius ( a ski where only Bro's need apply )
The Wind Shear was also the Hart Pulse.

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