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Which Black Crows skis are the most like the Kendo, Enforcer 90, etc?

Coolhand

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We carried Black Crows a couple of years ago. Consumer reception was tepid at best. Demo feedback was mostly, meh... They were just ok, nothing special. Yes, there is a bit of a design difference (mostly shape and camber profile) with their skis, but no distinctly, unique tech or materials. I understand the Amer model (Atomic, Salomon, Armada) all brands owned by the same parent company, with slight different materials and design ethos for each brand, but all the materials and technology are unique and "in-house". Black Crows now seems to be developing some momentum in the overall marketplace, but nothing dramatically new, as far of designs vs. two seasons ago. I'm just wondering what the buzz is about. They don't make anything targeted at my type of skis or skiing. (Traditional, Directional, carving oriented, two layers of metal, wood core) So there stuff is all lost on me.
 

Cheizz

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They don't make anything targeted at my type of skis or skiing. (Traditional, Directional, carving oriented, two layers of metal, wood core) So there stuff is all lost on me.
Black Crows is a freeski company. They're based in Chamonix, France. Freeride skis are what their base is. They're not a traditional European ski company that started somewhere back in the previous century when all skis were straight and max 67 mm wide. If you're a traditional race ski derivative-type skier, I can get why their skis don't speak to you (and maybe Peak, Van Deer etc might). But the fact that they produce skis with a different, distinct feel is what they're all about. And if they do so without any fancy tech or materials - who cares? That argument seems a bit silly IMO.
 

Coolhand

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My question still stands. If the OP wants a Black Crows ski that's most similar to a Kendo or Enforcer. Why not just buy an Enforcer or Kendo with more traditional construction? Why are you even looking at Black Crows, if they don't try to make anything like that? Admittedly, the brand doesn't resonate with me, no big deal. But, if you are looking for a more traditional construction and feel, then why look at a company that doesn't do that? I think that that is a fair question.
 

Cheizz

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'Something similar to Kendo, Enforcer 88, Blizzard Brahma' can mean something that has a similar feel (which would be difficult, because these skis already very different feel). It could also mean 'a ski around 88 mm underfoot that carves well on groomers but can handle crud and some soft stuff too'. In that case, there are about 10 skis that one could consider, including the Orb. My bet is OP is looking for that goldilocks 88 mm ski and likes other Black Crows skis (in terms of feel). Asking here if Black Crows has a ski in that category is not that idiotic.
 

AltaSkier

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My question still stands. If the OP wants a Black Crows ski that's most similar to a Kendo or Enforcer. Why not just buy an Enforcer or Kendo with more traditional construction? Why are you even looking at Black Crows, if they don't try to make anything like that?
Maybe the OP wants to try something a little bit different?
 

Ken_R

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Oh bonus question too, what does the freebird designation mean? Is that a lighter build or something for touring? If so I would have gone with shweatybird :)

Freebird models are light weight skis for touring.
Thank you! The Black Crows website says the Orb weighs 1625g per ski. That's with two layers of metal. I'd be interested to see if a ski that light has the ride characteristics I generally value.

Camox at 97 is wider then I'm looking for. I do see a lot of these out on the hill that's for sure

The Camox is a really awesome ski. It is not super demanding but still very capable. The Orb is light but stiffer and carves fantastically well. Very fun ski for those "it has not snowed in days" days. Black Crows skis in general are on the stiffer side and damper side but still have some fun built into them so they are not planky or dead.
 

In2h2o

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What is so interesting about Black Crows? Their skis are all made in the Elan or Atomic Factories. What tech are they offering that aren't in the majors offerings. If you want something like the Kendo or Enforcer, how about buying a Kendo or Enforcer? Not a facsimile from a "marketing" brand and not the company that actually puts it together and makes it happen?. Kind of like Peak Skis all built in the Elan Factory. I don't understand the interest in these brands, except the desire to have something that looks different on your feet. I guess that I don't "get it". The life of a ludite...
Edited after above post - They definitely have a different feel as mentioned. I find other more popular skis to feel pedestrian and dumbed down for the masses. Honestly they are one of the few ski brands that make a skis with a longer turn radius in my size.
 
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Hankj

Hankj

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My question still stands. If the OP wants a Black Crows ski that's most similar to a Kendo or Enforcer. Why not just buy an Enforcer or Kendo with more traditional construction? Why are you even looking at Black Crows, if they don't try to make anything like that? Admittedly, the brand doesn't resonate with me, no big deal. But, if you are looking for a more traditional construction and feel, then why look at a company that doesn't do that? I think that that is a fair question.
I'm just trying to know what's out there and give things a try before I commit to one of the down the middle choices. It's likely I'll end up on the Kendo or the Mindbender
 

FlimFlamvanHam

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Edited after above post - They definitely have a different feel as mentioned. I find other more popular skis to feel pedestrian and dumbed down for the masses. Honestly they are one of the few ski brands that make a skis with a longer turn radius in my size.
Sorry, you feel black crows do not feel pedestrian nor dumbed down? If yes, please go on. They are made just like any other ski and offer nothing innovative or groundbreaking. I'll give them credit for aluminum tip and tail inserts on a couple models (which does go a very long way with me as it's a quality touch). They are every bit as pedestrian and dumbed down and made for the masses as any other mainstream ski.
 

In2h2o

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Funny, Black Crows are unisex skis - just like Volkl ..... I see where you are coming from. Which was exactly my point a lesser package for women in the other mainstream skis
I like Volkl (and really any other well built ski that is not too light or left and right specific), but their women's skis are odd compared to the likes of Nordica and Blizzard or Salomon etc, who actually build their mirror women's models in a lesser package. ie: one sheet of metal (rather than 2) and/or a softer core. There are very, very few women who I believe would enjoy a Secret 96 beyond a groomer and even there, why? It's an M6 with different top sheet and some shorter lengths. Sure it can be ripped at speed (as we clearly saw in the vid) but anything less than that, IMO, it is way too much ski for a lighter skier or a skier without a top end skillset who is bending it through force.
 
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KingGrump

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Sorry, you feel black crows do not feel pedestrian nor dumbed down? If yes, please go on. They are made just like any other ski and offer nothing innovative or groundbreaking. I'll give them credit for aluminum tip and tail inserts on a couple models (which does go a very long way with me as it's a quality touch). They are every bit as pedestrian and dumbed down and made for the masses as any other mainstream ski.

Don't know where you ski and who you ski with. Lots of women I skied with rock the Kenja and Secret 96 in the steep, bumps and tree here. Thinking women as the weaker sex doesn't seems to apply here in Taos.

FWIW, the current M6/Secret 96 and the Kenja/Kendo series of skis has been moderated quite a bit from previous gens. I am certain they did that to make me feel better about myself as I get older and weaker.
 

Cheizz

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Here's our review of the new Orb:

 

DanoT

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The OP, who is considering a 90ish wide ski, might want to demo a Head Kore 93. While they are super lightweight, if you flex them longitudinally in a shop and then flex a Nordica Enforcer 94, you will discover that the Kore 93 is the stiffer ski. My Kore 93s are the first non metal ski that I have owned in years and they are holding up very well as my everyday ski.

When I worked at a ski shop demo centre, the first year we carried Black Crows we sold very few to the public (they are premium priced) but the staff all bought Black Crows (at staff discount price) and some more than one pair. For me, the BC Atris, a 108mm wide powder ski, was first ski over 100mm wide ski that I liked enough to buy.
 
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