Author Topic: Head Rev 85 review  (Read 1807 times)

Perry

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Head Rev 85 review
« on: March 09, 2013, 01:27:24 pm »
Rev 85  review 184cm mounted 1 - 1.5cm forward (86mm under foot at this length)
6'2" 200lb level 7.5 -8 skier.

I bought these as my western 50/50 ski.  I ski a Head SS magnum at 177cm for out east.  I have also owned the RX8 at 170cm which I loved, and the Watea 98 which was a very good off piste ski and capable on piste, not exactly boring but kinda ho-hum on the groomers - this ski replaces the Watea 98.

Conditions - Skied 5 days at Steamboat, 4 days of fresh snow 16", 8", 6" and 3" and one bluebird day.

Overall - a very versatile ski.  It does everything well except for powder more than 12-14 inches.  Great in powder up to a foot.  Very playful.  I skied them up to just above the knee - a wider board would have been more on top. 

Groomers - very predictable, nice even flex, soft tip.  The early rise is very slight and I didn't notice it at all.  No tip flap, no sudden engagement when the rocker tip engages.  I did ski a series of turns PMTS style, pulling up my free foot after the top of the turn to get bigger angles and they started digging trenches and laid over very predictably.  Even gave a little rebound when pressured this way.  Now - these were soft groomers, hero snow so east coast skiers will need to consider accordingly. They are very stable.  Not an MX 88 that begs you to just let it rip personal safety be damned....but not many skis are!  I had them going as fast as I wanted; 40 - 45 MPH and did not find their limit at that speed.

Bumps - I am not a great bump skier which is why I hesitated to rate myself a full level 8 skier.  For me, these are excellent bump skis, the best I have been on (but then again I am not a bump guy so judge accordingly)  If you are an aspiring bump skier and want a ski that will help your confidence in the bumps and will also perform elsewhere, then this was a great choice for me. For example I was able to ski Rolex at Steamboat, a black bump run and never stopped due to control issues, just fatigue.  This ski turns best for me when I lighten the inside foot and with flexing.  My problem in the past in bumps was that I would panic and lift the inside ski to get around a bump and then loose speed control. People who know what they are doing in the bumps will tell you to keep both feet in contact with the snow to help with speed control.  I was able to use my uphill edge to "scrape off speed" Clendenin style and it worked great.  A BIG difference in bumps for me.

Trees - Again, I am not the guy to ask about tree skis.  For me chasing my 24 yo on his snowboard into the trees they helped me.  Don't think they were as good as the Watea 98 at 186cm but they were very close (but I didn't ski them back to back)  Mid-shin snow, floating through and they were agile enough for me to save some "old man honor"

Crud - really fun. On the runs with pushed up piles I was just plowing through, carving around.  Solid and playful - Very fun.

Edge to edge - Not quick or slow - I wasn't impressed nor was I disappointed.  About what you would expect for an 86mm ski.

Also, snow feel is very good. I can feel the transition at the top of the turn and re-centering on the inside edge.

I am very pleased with this ski so far after 5 days.


byronm

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2013, 09:20:27 pm »
Nice review Perry...I too am enjoying the Revs.
 
Very interesting and encouraging to hear a review from someone a couple digits above my skill level. Tells me they have a higher end that I can grow into.
 
Their amicability and forgiveness is proving to be an advantage as I progress. A real pleasure to ski.
 
 

LivingProof

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2013, 06:40:18 am »
Perry,

Nice review, and, glad you like them...hope I feel the same way when I return from Jackson and Big Sky. We probably ski around the same level, Gary tells me you like speed a little more than I. The reviews of the ski are what attracted me to it, so, I'm confident it will work. I intend to try the Clendenin scrape movements when I use them this week to prepare for bumps. Like you, they are not my strength as a skier.

I owned the Kastle 88 for a few seasons, so, it will be interesting to experience the Head Rev for the comparison. Sold them to obtain more versatility in soft snow and a lower turning radius, which the Heads should provide.

Perry

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2013, 12:39:06 pm »
Byron
Glad you like the Revs too.  They are an easy ski in the sense that you don't have to say right on top of them all the time.  You can push them and they perform but if you want to chill out and just relax and cruise, they won't sneak up and bite you.  Very big sweet spot.  They are not as exciting on groomers as some higher performance skis because of that but a great all-rounder.  It is a ski I can take out west, or for powder days in the east and have fun on 95% of the time.

LP
They definitely come around quicker than the MX88 although I just skied that for a day.  I remember it as a really great ski and unbelievably stable.  I was skiing with some fast downhill GS types and one of them had a GPS that said we were going over 50 MPH.  I felt fine until the wind wanted to take my helmet off my head and was pulling on my chin strap.  The Rev is more playful, better in powder and bumps, probably not as good in crud and cut up at speed but still very good.

hobbes

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #4 on: March 11, 2013, 09:22:20 am »
New to the mix here, but wanted to know if anyone on the Rev 85 had also skied/demo'd the Rev 80?  The Rev 80 was one of about 12 skis I demo'd this year for frontside/resort-based-all-mountain Eastern skiing.  I heard good things about the Rev series and wanted to like it a lot ... but I just didn't.  Wondering if the 85 skis differently enough that it is worth a separate demo?  Also wondering if it was just a bad tune on the Rev 80, since it just didn't hold an edge as well as several of the competitors models in the 76-82 mm width range?

jim-ratliff

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2013, 10:24:36 am »
New to the mix here, but wanted to know if anyone on the Rev 85 had also skied/demo'd the Rev 80?  The Rev 80 was one of about 12 skis I demo'd this year for frontside/resort-based-all-mountain Eastern skiing.  I heard good things about the Rev series and wanted to like it a lot ... but I just didn't.  Wondering if the 85 skis differently enough that it is worth a separate demo?  Also wondering if it was just a bad tune on the Rev 80, since it just didn't hold an edge as well as several of the competitors models in the 76-82 mm width range?
Yes, probably so (depending on a number of things, including your level, the tune, and the binding location).  One web site with reviews called the Rev 80 the "entry level Rev", the Rev 80 Pro the ski "for fast, energetic, skilled skiers", and the Rev 85 Pro as a "truly great all-around 1-quiver ski".  In the Head line, the current SuperShape Titan with a 78 mm waist is also a better ski than the Rev 80.  In last year models, the Peak 78 Pro and Peak 84 Pro are also very good skis and worth a demo is you find them.

And welcome to PeakSkiers -- tell us a bit about yourself??
"If you're gonna play the game boy, ya gotta learn to play it right."

LivingProof

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2013, 10:52:18 am »
Sneaky Head marketing to have both a Rev 80 (without metal) and a Rev 80 Pro (with metal). ::)
I did not realize this until the above 2 posts and then checking Heads website. Head markets the Rev series as "all mountain" and the Rev 80 as more of an intermediate ski. Count me as a non-fan of Head marketing....call a basic ski for what it is and don't confuse it with a higher end ski.

Hobbes....were you aware of that and which did you demo? I'm not surprised you found them wanting for grip. Where do you normally ski?

Pure speculation, but, on eastern conditions, I would expect the wider carving skis, like the Hart Pulse, to have more grip than the Rev series. The Head Supershape Titan with a high 70 waist, found in Heads website "Racing" skis section, is another example of an eastern ski I would demo, but reviews are a little up and down.  There have been some very nice reviews of next seasons Head Titan, totally redesigned, that would spark my interest in a wider eastern ski.


Perry

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2013, 11:01:42 am »
Hobbes,
Could definitely be the tune - I had mine "new ski prep" which included grinding the bases to be sure they were flat and getting the edges right.  I does make a difference!

Also for an eastern ski - I would wait til next year and consider the Super Shape rally, or go to Asogear and get last years Ipeak 78 or 84 or a Super shape speed - they have some very good prices!!!  Will handle most conditions better and you won't loose much (except maybe this year when there were a lot of days with over 6" of new snow)

hobbes

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2013, 11:56:24 am »
Yes, probably so (depending on a number of things, including your level, the tune, and the binding location).  One web site with reviews called the Rev 80 the "entry level Rev", the Rev 80 Pro the ski "for fast, energetic, skilled skiers", and the Rev 85 Pro as a "truly great all-around 1-quiver ski".  In the Head line, the current SuperShape Titan with a 78 mm waist is also a better ski than the Rev 80.  In last year models, the Peak 78 Pro and Peak 84 Pro are also very good skis and worth a demo is you find them.

And welcome to PeakSkiers -- tell us a bit about yourself??

Did not realize there were 2 different Rev 80 models! :o  Checked Head's catalog info., and it looks like I demo'd the Rev 80 Pro ... must have been the tune.

About Me - I ski WAY TOO LITTLE, as I currently live in NC.  Getting out 12-18 days per season, primarily in Vermont ... Smugglers' Notch, Killington and occasionally Stratton/Bromley.  165 lbs., 50 y.o., and, according to the last ski pro I took a lesson with, a low-Level 8 skier (I always call my self an upper Level 7/lower Level 8 to have some room for error!)  I have a serious ski gear disease/obsession, even though I have absolutely no excuse based on how little I ski! 

jim-ratliff

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2013, 12:01:05 pm »
A serious ski gear disease, no matter how many or few days you ski, is symptomatic of almost all of us. Welcome.
BTW, Perry is also from NC.
« Last Edit: March 11, 2013, 07:23:55 pm by jim-ratliff »
"If you're gonna play the game boy, ya gotta learn to play it right."

LivingProof

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2013, 12:33:22 pm »
Check out the video review that Start Haus did on the Rev 85, and, it features some skiing by Philpug. Phil, ya gotta stop putting your speaking lines on the floor. Get Obama to lend you a teleprompter.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=QPozx6Vmpdc#!

Perry

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2013, 07:06:44 pm »
Hobbes,
I am from around the Winston-Salem area.  Maybe next year we can make some turns together.

hobbes

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2013, 07:58:10 pm »
Hobbes,
I am from around the Winston-Salem area.  Maybe next year we can make some turns together.

I am just north of Charlotte in Cabarrus county.  Always looking for an excuse to make some turns!

Perry

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2013, 03:28:10 pm »
Great,
Next year we will have to make that happen.
P

LivingProof

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Re: Head Rev 85 review
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2013, 05:17:20 pm »
Did my first day on the new Rev 85 pro today. It was a tale of two cites, or, perhaps, the worst of times, the best of times. Not about the skis, about the conditions. Yesterday, it poured rain and was foggy, my home mountain froze overnight and was groomed, a little. For the first 90 minutes, it was boilerplate, slowly softened, and, by early afternoon, the mountain skied very well.

At day's start, even the racers were going slow. The Rev's held their own, given the technique of the driver. Better on hard snow and death cookies than I would have expected. They were skied without any tuning other than the factory tune. I hate the noise made when skis just slide all over the place. Little vibration, the dampness in the ski showed very nicely. Was a positive experience given how tough the conditions were.
94
As the snow soften, the Rev's showed as a very nice, neutral ski. Lighter than traditional sandwich construction Head and Hart skis in the quiver. Did not find a speed limit, easily went through piles of crud on the lower mountain. Predictable with longer radius turns, the radius is 15.9. More of a GS cruiser. They get from edge to edge closer to a narrow ski than a wider skis, nowhere near as cumbersome of wider skis I've been on. It's a forgiving ski, far less stiff than the Pules and last years Sultan. All in all, they compare favorably with the Hart Pulse, Pulse better in hard snow, Rev's more comfortable in soft crud - what one would expect from these similar, but, different skis. The nice broad tip of the Rev promises to be a much better ski in the west, I'm thinking it would handle moderate powder very nicely.

Of interest was I had a fall where a ski came off. Putting them back on, I must have switched skis and the result was one ski just had no edge holding power. Switched skis, everything was fine...came home and did some edge work. The resulting clean smooth edges were far better than the original factory tune. I should have known better than to ski the factory tune and should have worked the edges prior to going out on day one. Another  find was that the skis were bought on ebay from a distributor and not a ski shop. There was a dime sized area in the base that had perforations, not deep, not as bad as a good rock hit, so, I'm thinking Head considered this as a defect and the skis became "blems". Very easy ptex repair to correct.

So, at the end of day one, I am smiling. Just a very nice ski. One of the people I skied with was demoing an Elan 888 and was not at all happy, but, he demo'd the Rev a few days ago and was very positive about it. He stated next years model has minimal changes - different graphics with minor changes, will drop the "Pro" designation, slightly different tip and tail trim and a lengthening of the turn radius. Pretty much the same ski.

Can't wait till Montana in another week to continue the relationship.