These things are locked-in. That’s the best way we’ve come up with when it comes to describing the Kastle MX 84. They are pure, polished, and poised. I don’t think I felt a single vibration when I tested them, they’re just so smooth. We get caught up in a world of strange rocker and taper profiles and shapes, and we forget what it’s like to rip on a straight-up ski with camber and flat tails. From the second you roll the MX 84 on edge, to the last bit of contact with the tail, these skis are all business. They’re playful in the sense that it’s fun to make these turns, but they’re pretty far from toy-like skis. The pilot should be skilled and balanced enough to handle the precision of the MX 84, but when the skill and the ski line up, these things make some of the smoothest, cleanest, and roundest arcs out there. With a 16.3-meter turn radius at the 176 cm length, these things are ready to carve. Built with a Fir and Beech wood core, dual titanal laminate, and a fiberglass layer, these skis are ready to shred. They’re stiff and burly, but still responsive. Our testers were all fairly unanimous in their praise for these skis and their ability to rail turns on groomers.
Chuck Waskuch was pretty succinct with his review, calling the MX 84 a “great trail ripper.” His top score was a 5 out of 5 for overall impression, with 4’s given for stability, torsional stiffness, and edge hold. The rest of his scores were all 3’s out of 5, so it’s fair to say that Chuck is on board the MX 84 train.
Parker Herlihy has more of a freeride background, so it’s always fun to hear his opinion of a front-side carver. He thought the 176 was too short for him, as the 184 would most likely be the right size for his taller frame and more aggressive ski style. Aside from similar scores as Chuck in stability, torsional stiffness, and edge hold, Parker was on the other side of the aisle for quickness, playfulness, and forgiveness. For the most part, this is not a playful ski, as the build and shape are more business-like. Parker calls them “damp and dope. Not as playful as I would like, but solid at speed.” He also notes that the construction and the flat tail make the ski a little “slow edge to edge.” You’ll have that when the tail wants to dig in and hold on pretty much all the time.
Dave Marryat found the 176 to be the right size, and he had a bunch of 5’s on his scorecard. His top marks were given for stability, quickness, torsional stiffness, and overall impression. Dave calls the MX 84 “stiff and confident, a true cambered carver. Lays trenches with the right driver.” And expanding on that thought as to the intended audience, “not for the timid or beginners.” Fair enough, and we agree that beginners should not really be on skis with metal and full camber.
Another fan of the 176, Rick Randall gave his top marks for stability, torsional stiffness, edge hold, and versatility. He didn’t have a top score for overall impression, with that category getting a 3 out of 5, but remember that skis are all about personal preference. Rick calls the MX 84 “stable at speed and good at varying turn shape. Good for firm groomer skiing.” In terms of that shape being best for corduroy and groomed terrain, Rick notes that the ski is “more of a carver versus an all-mountain ski as there is no rocker in the tip or tail.”
Best for laying trenches on groomers, the Kastle MX 84 is a high-powered weapon that loves speed and angles. When you put this thing on edge, the build quality and design really shine through, and although there’s not a huge number of skiers out there that can access all of the performance that these skis offer, those that can, should consider themselves lucky.