2021 Völkl Deacon V.Werks

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Philpug: This ski blew all our testers away. It is safe to say that it was the overwhelming shocker of the test, in the best possible way. The Deacon V.Werks is a scalpel; yes, we have had skis like that in this category, and while some have had the tenacious grip of the V.Werks, none have had its feel, even the original RTM V.Werks.

Völkl has something special here; I think it is very well the best and most successful application of a carbon-based premium ski. Make sure you bring your A-game, though, because where some skis will let you relax from time to time, the new Deacon demands your attention -- and rewards you in spades when you provide it. It has probably one of the smallest sweet spots of any ski in this class, and it makes no excuses for that.

Insider tip: If you are in between sizes, go with the shorter of the two. No one will think lesser of you.​
Drahtguy Kevin: Clicking into the Deacon V.Werks provided a surprise. It is extremely light and extremely connected to the snow. On edge, it grips like a gator but is easy to release at any point in the turn. I varied turn shapes, speeds, and terrain, and the V.Werks handled it all admirably. A consistent flex and predictable tip are other attributes of this ski.

Insider tip: Don’t let the weight fool you; the Deacon V.Werks is a smooth, stable, ripper.​
 
Awards
Who is it for?
Good skiers who are on their game and are looking for a light, narrower all-mountain ski need look no further.
Who is it not for?
While this ski works well at slower speeds, it excels as the mph grows. To paraphrase Col. Jessup, ”You want this ski? You can’t handle this ski.”
Skier ability
Expert
Ski category
Frontside, All Mountain
Ski attributes
Groomers
Segment
Men

Specifications

HighFives
Available sizes
167, 172, 177, 182
Dimensions
132-84-115
Radius
21/15/[email protected]
Rocker profile
Camber with tip rocker
Construction design
All new
Binding options
System
right ad
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Fleece82

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How does the new V werks Deacon compare to the old RTM V werks?

Several years ago I was able to demo the RTM V werks and RTM models. I didnt care for the regular RTM but absolutely loved the V Werks! Particularly the confidence they inspired with their edge hold and grip on extreme hard pack and ice we see here on the east. I also enjoyed how they just shoved you out of a turn and into the next. The one downfall was it really only liked one turn shape.

Right as I was about to pull the trigger, I ran across a barely used/like new set of Kästle mx88's for less than half the price of the Völkl. So I couldnt pass it up.
The Kästle has been a good ski. Smooth. Buttery. Great at speed. Damp. But they really fail in one area. Edge hold when charging down groomers once they are scraped down and iced up. I've tried different tunes/race tunes. Help a little but never inspired the confidence the RTM V werks did. Nor does it give you that shove coming out of a turn. Looking back maybe the MX83 or 76 would have been a better choice.

So over the past 5 years or so I have slightly regretted not getting the V Werks. Then I saw these got released and immediately got excited. However when I checked with my demo shop, they really dropped the ball on higher end Völkl demos. So no dice.

I'm just trying to figure out if these maintain the characteristics of older V werks just improved and up to date.. Or if they are a different animal all together.

For reference im 39y/o 5'11 190lbs. Athletic skier. Im solely using these on the east (WV, PA, MD) regularly. I stick to groomers, don't do moguls. Typically a high speed charger making a mixture of turn shapes depending on trail and conditions. I know a narrower waist ski may be a better choice and am open to other suggestions. But have grown to like that 80mm group bc they can shred, bust through junk, and handle a few inches of fresh when we get it. And they really handle the sub par conditions we typically have here. We go weeks with no snow, rely on man made, and suffer from continuous thaw and freeze cycles all winter.

Anyway, sorry if I got long winded. Any input and opinion is appreciated!
 

Tony S

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The Kästle has been a good ski. Smooth. Buttery. Great at speed. Damp. But they really fail in one area. Edge hold when charging down groomers once they are scraped down and iced up.
Valid criticism IME.
 

Philpug

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How does the new V werks Deacon compare to the old RTM V werks?
This ski is NOT the old RTM V.Werks...at least the one I remember. The original RTM V.Werks was a carbon infused version of the zero camber RTM84. It was a nice ski bit it had to be doing something as in it had to be on edge. I think @Drahtguy Kevin's and my review pretty much sum this ski up. I agree with @Tony S that I can understand why the MX88 didn't float your boat after skiing the RTM too but this one is much more of a serious ski than the original version.
But if the goal is to address this...
For reference im 39y/o 5'11 190lbs. Athletic skier. Im solely using these on the east (WV, PA, MD) regularly. I stick to groomers, don't do moguls. Typically a high speed charger making a mixture of turn shapes depending on trail and conditions. I know a narrower waist ski may be a better choice and am open to other suggestions. But have grown to like that 80mm group bc they can shred, bust through junk, and handle a few inches of fresh when we get it. And they really handle the sub par conditions we typically have here. We go weeks with no snow, rely on man made, and suffer from continuous thaw and freeze cycles all winter.
It is a viable option.
 

Fleece82

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This ski is NOT the old RTM V.Werks...at least the one I remember. The original RTM V.Werks was a carbon infused version of the zero camber RTM84. It was a nice ski bit it had to be doing something as in it had to be on edge. I think @Drahtguy Kevin's and my review pretty much sum this ski up. I agree with @Tony S that I can understand why the MX88 didn't float your boat after skiing the RTM too but this one is much more of a serious ski than the original version.
But if the goal is to address this...

It is a viable option.
Thanks for the response! Really appreciate your insight.
Do you have any other recommendations/suggestions that I should take a hard look at?
The Sforce/bold, 21' SR88, and though wider new Mantra M6 have also crossed my mind as its getting rave reviews!
I also don't mind stepping up to the 90's if ripping groomers is part of their skill set.
 

anders_nor

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New v-werks deacon 84 arrived, will be up against regular deacon 84, which in turn again was tested against the k2 mti/rossi lt (of course a bit different), regular deacon 84 has been run last 2 days(with a rough estimate of 32 days on snow total with that ski), v-werks today/tomorrow, then will switch skis on same day. new tune(88+1), basegrind, wax on the regular 84 to freshen it up. imho the regular deacon 84 for me ends up beeing the refernse ski for what I want ont he frontside for most days.

Im amazed at how light they are, and the construction is just cool, with pretty amazing CF work. binding also seems lighter? like the m-werks kingpin vs regular? The lightness, plastic protector tips, and just flexing them vs regular makes me think quicker edge to edge, but less brute force? so a more finesse version of the regular? very excited for the on snow now.

Conditions last few days has been bluebird days and -6ish during the day with -10 to -15c at night, so fairly cold, if you put a pole on the "snow" and press down hard, you will barely leave an imprint, conditions are *fast* and hard, probably the fastest I can remember for years.
 

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Fleece82

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New v-werks deacon 84 arrived, will be up against regular deacon 84, which in turn again was tested against the k2 mti/rossi lt (of course a bit different), regular deacon 84 has been run last 2 days(with a rough estimate of 32 days on snow total with that ski), v-werks today/tomorrow, then will switch skis on same day. new tune(88+1), basegrind, wax on the regular 84 to freshen it up. imho the regular deacon 84 for me ends up beeing the refernse ski for what I want ont he frontside for most days.

Im amazed at how light they are, and the construction is just cool, with pretty amazing CF work. binding also seems lighter? like the m-werks kingpin vs regular? The lightness, plastic protector tips, and just flexing them vs regular makes me think quicker edge to edge, but less brute force? so a more finesse version of the regular? very excited for the on snow now.

Conditions last few days has been bluebird days and -6ish during the day with -10 to -15c at night, so fairly cold, if you put a pole on the "snow" and press down hard, you will barely leave an imprint, conditions are *fast* and hard, probably the fastest I can remember for years.
Very curious to see how you like these compared to regular version. I'm hoping to demo the regular version this week. No V werks version available . But it will atleast give me an idea and reference.
 

James

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Thanks for the response! Really appreciate your insight.
Do you have any other recommendations/suggestions that I should take a hard look at?
The Sforce/bold, 21' SR88, and though wider new Mantra M6 have also crossed my mind as its getting rave reviews!
I also don't mind stepping up to the 90's if ripping groomers is part of their skill set.
You went away from what you wanted last time.
Stick with the Sforce Bold and this Vwerks.
 

Fleece82

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New v-werks deacon 84 arrived, will be up against regular deacon 84, which in turn again was tested against the k2 mti/rossi lt (of course a bit different), regular deacon 84 has been run last 2 days(with a rough estimate of 32 days on snow total with that ski), v-werks today/tomorrow, then will switch skis on same day. new tune(88+1), basegrind, wax on the regular 84 to freshen it up. imho the regular deacon 84 for me ends up beeing the refernse ski for what I want ont he frontside for most days.

Im amazed at how light they are, and the construction is just cool, with pretty amazing CF work. binding also seems lighter? like the m-werks kingpin vs regular? The lightness, plastic protector tips, and just flexing them vs regular makes me think quicker edge to edge, but less brute force? so a more finesse version of the regular? very excited for the on snow now.

Conditions last few days has been bluebird days and -6ish during the day with -10 to -15c at night, so fairly cold, if you put a pole on the "snow" and press down hard, you will barely leave an imprint, conditions are *fast* and hard, probably the fastest I can remember for years.
So what are your thoughts between these two? I got to demo the regular 84 today and was extremely unimpressed! Big step backwards from my Kästle mx88.
Now with that said all the shop had was a 172 and I usually ski 180ish. 5'11" 190lbs. Athletic and aggressive skier.. Also they didn't seem to have the best tune. So that may have had a lot to do with my experience. But I could not get the tips to hold. They danced everywhere. And when I did start to get the tips to behave the tails would break loose... skis were just very unsettled, lots of chatter at speed.

I would hope the Vwerks version are more damp, provide more rebound energy and have better edge hold. Atleast that was my experience with the RTM vs Vwerks RTM.
 

anders_nor

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we ended up with -22c (and amazing conditions + bluebird,) but as my porsche decided air suspension was cold and throwing messages we were delayed waiting for service info, then trying to find indoor parking + other mishaps my 2 test days in the mountains were somewhat cut short so didnt even get the v-werks out of the bag.

tune on the 84 is important for sure though, I got mine back a few weeks ago after loaning them out, and they were just not right when I got them back and I gave them to the local race shop here. have about 5 days on them after that, and I realized why I liked them so much. I have some gopro 360 video from the 2 days in hemsedal I might publish.


I will bring deacon 84 (5 day old tune) + deacon 84 vwerks( factory new tune) to hafjell this saturday and do half day switchover. we have an "experts only" day with friends.
I will look over tunes on both skis tonight if I have the time for some fine tuning by hand. I will see if I can get some of my friends to film me, at 243lbs Im fast (fat) enough that most have trouble keeping up even when Im on edge and they straight line though ;)


I have not skied the mx88. Skiiing to small skis with a bad tune, will not be right on pretty much any ski.
 

anders_nor

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Skied for 7 hours today (actual times on skis), we found the perfect slopes with 0 liftlines and just lapped all day. conditions were bluebird and -15c (which is way way warmer than we had for a while) , snow conditions were epic, we started off on PERFECT corderoy as we grabbed the first gondolas, even the steepest black runs didnt have any ice. so tons of grip, but firm.

v-werks is finesse, and faster edge to edge for sure but it does have some power, Im 6'3 and 243lbs "bare" this morning, another buddy testing is 6'6 and 244lbs, neither could make it fold out even when really pushing it, so it does keep the power of the regular one, with such fun rebound, CF is applied well here.

Regular is more power, more umph, slower edge to edge, less precise, probably better for crud/ice/snow pile mixups, 2 buddies liked the regular better (pricepoint was also considerd here) but last buddy favored the v-werks

Its quite big differences between 2 "identical" skis, and at the same time, small?

v-werks reminds me more of a narrower ski (with its quickness)


I did bring the v-werks for a few laps in the woods (tight trees) , it did surprisingly good, think the light swing weight was key + me beeing used to heavy heavy skis.

spent about 40% of the day on the v-werks, 15% on regular deacon 84, 40% on k2 MTI distruption and 5% mantra 102. we were 4 buddies, doing the switcharoo game, with me supplying skis ;)

I will probably bring them out for some ice skiiing our local black runs tomorrow.


Not sure it helps @Fleece82 ;) but I really did like it, need to test crud performance if it gets knocked out more, and I do think you need to test a proper tuned regular as well.
 
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Fleece82

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Great write up! Thanks for taking the time! It def helps out! 7hrs of hitting it hard had to wipe you out but glad you got some good snow and weather!
 

anders_nor

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Great write up! Thanks for taking the time! It def helps out! 7hrs of hitting it hard had to wipe you out but glad you got some good snow and weather!
haha you are more correct than you think ;) were on the K2 MTI at the end of the day, lost leg strength going over a roller and down on edge, this if course means getting back on ski, and some 1 legged woooopsie action. I let the guy who had the most tired legs ski the v-werks near end of the day, the lightness makes them pretty easy on the legs vs the other skis actually. Rules of the ski day were set up front, there would be no stops on slope or skidding sideways, just carving fun all day + a 45minute lunch.

v-werks also feels narrower than a 84 when on piste, like a skinnier ski since they are so fast edge to edge. I feel like the v-werks could be the ski if you want something that feels skinnier, but is wider so it works with some snow and has more float/rocker than a skinny. compared to say an an enforcer 88 its slaugtherd by the v-werks in every way, not even in same league. I'd be very suprised if the Kästle mx88 can keep up.

its 9:38 AM here now, gonna hit the local black runs that is 10 min frommy house (mostly ice) at 11-12 ish with the v-werks, will also let me see how the stock tune is on ice
 

anders_nor

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I went lightweight today! regular 130s atomics were changed for hawk prime 130 XTD. the v-werks easy outskies the boot for sure.

That beeing said I had a blast, 3 hours, 90% on our "black" run, only -9c but sun & bluebird day made conditions at parts amazing, and as I worried the boots would collapse at any time, I even managed to scrape hips briefly. I feel the v-werks does indeed have the power of the regular deacon, even when punching through crud, on the ice parts it was just as fun as a fresh tuned deacon 84, maybe even more so?

Not sure how they did it, but this is a quicker lightweight version that keeps the power of the heavier ski. and the regular deacon 84 is pretty darn fun, and imho one of the very best 80mm skis that can handle somewhat mixed conditions.

2021-02-07 15.15.47.jpg
 

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Fleece82

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You have really helped me out here. Like I said earlier, I was not impressed with the deacon but length was wrong and sub-par tune.

I skied the M5 and while it was solid. It took my legs from me after a handful of hard charging runs. Just too demanding for my taste. But loved the edge grip and stability at speed.

My favorite ski of the day was the Kore 87. Super lightweight and VERY easy to ski. Almost automatic. Quick transitions and had A LOT of fun with that ski. Busted through crud and chopped up snow with ease.. It just lacked in dampness, stability at speed and edge grip where snow was really hard or scraped off and iced up. The Kore 93 wad better in that area. But not as quick and poppy in turns.

Sounds like the V Werks may be perfect solution. The other skis I was considering was elan wingman cti. Was waiting to see if they came out with a black edition or updated them with more carbon. Also eyeballing the Sforce Bold and RC One 86GT. But the V werks sounds pretty on target for what I'm looking for!

I found the regular deacon to be a noisy ski. Chattered alot on hard snow. Is the v werks quieter? That was the big difference I noticed between the RTM and RTM V werks. Imagine it's the same this time around.
 
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anders_nor

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I thought about the chatter aspect both yesterday and today, and I have to say I dont find the regular version very chattery either, nor the v-werks, I did probably hit 60mph both days, I asked the other guys as well. But I have only ever skied the 182 versions, I do have access to the 172 so I will give that a shot.. but it hasnt been super high priority, but I did ski with a buddy who has the 172, he was carving solid turns going like 50 and I was trailing him very close (teaching purposes) and I have to say his skis were also quite composed. Not trying to be rude, but could it be to little weight on shovels? And is it just on straight lines or on carve with high edges?


The 3D radius allows you to choose how demanding they should be. I don't find the mantra M5 to be very wow I do love the M102 for going mach1 on edge.

Most chattery 80mm ski I ever tried is probably the enforcer 88, that thing just goes flap flap flap flap flap, I think enforcer has the flapping down for 90mm category as well.... ;)

I sadly kinda had the sforce bold written of as not that interesting by just holding it and flexing it, didnt even bother to demo, the RC one 86GT I do wanna demo, but the model, and fischer in general are very hard to find for demos here where I live. and honestly I prefer more time on a ski than a demo will often often, and demos are not always wellkept... hence I just buy skis and sell what I dont like a lot.
 

Fleece82

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It could have been weight distribution as I was trying to figure the ski out. If I got weight forward or gas pedaled a bit to try and get tips to bite, the tails seems to get loose. Then as I let weight get back to center under boot, the tips started dancing and slapping around but the tails really got glued to the snow and engaged.

I dont know. Just could figure the ski out. But I also havent skied something that short for over 20 years... so it could have def been me.. The shop guy felt if I had the 177 or 182 I would have had a much different experience.
 

Philpug

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Screen Shot 2021-03-26 at 4.02.28 PM.png
Long Term Update: I skied the Deacon V.Werks this AM for a few hours (than switched to the K2 Disruption MTI). Ohemgee what a fun preciise ski the V.Werks is. The V.Werks is Völkl's technical tour de force of skis with its Carbon layups and Tailored Carbon Tip and Tailored Titinal Frame and I will add their 3D sidecut is truly a game changer for me and that is coming from someone who was never really a Völkl zealot, I am a true believer.
Where so many skis that have this much technology going on, the ski is usually very cold and binary but with the V.Werks, it just werks. The Deacon V.Werks feels intelligent without feeling like it is, for lack of a better comparision, Sheldon Cooper. it has an inate connection to the snow, a spring and a flair almost an AI feel, if that makes sense.
 
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