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Preview: 2015-2016 Line Sir Francis Bacon

Ski: 2015-2016 Line Sir Francis Bacon

Stated Dimensions: 135-104-131

Stated Average Sidecut Radius: 17.7 meters

Available Lengths: 178, 184, 190

Core Construction: “Cloud Core” – vertically laminated balsa plywood with flax fiber reinforcements

Stated Weight per Ski: 1,760 grams (184cm length)

The Line Sir Francis Bacon has been completely redesigned for the 2015-2016 season.

The new model is 4mm narrower than this year’s version (the 2014-2015 model), and features a stiffer flex, a lighter core construction (~400 grams / ski lighter), a new tip and tail shape, and a camber profile, all based off of the design of the Magnum Opus.

The new Bacon’s tail has a solid medium flex, and its shovel is a touch softer, but the ski’s entire flex profile is very even and consistent.

While the new version of the SFB shares the same 17 meter sidecut of previous iterations, we’re curious to see how its stiffer flex and the (presumably) lighter swing weight affects its playfulness. Will the new, stiffer model be more difficult to butter and press? How much more? Will its firmer flex increase the ski’s stability? Will the new Bacon retain its quick, maneuverable feel thanks to its lighter swing weight, slightly narrower waist width, and new, more tapered tip and tail shape?

We’re big fans of the current Bacon, and we’re excited to answer these questions.

 

 

Alex Adams reviews the Line Bacon for Blister Gear Review

2015-2016 Line Bacon 114, 184cm

 

Blister Gear Review reviews the 15/16 Line Sir Francis Bacon

Line Sir Francis Bacon

 

 

Blister Gear Review reviews the 15/16 Line Sir Francis Bacon

Line Sir Francis Bacon

 

 

Blister Gear Review reviews the 15/16 Line Sir Francis Bacon

Line Sir Francis Bacon – Tip Profile

 

 

Blister Gear Review reviews the 15/16 Line Sir Francis Bacon

Line Sir Francis Bacon – Tail Profile

 

 

Blister Gear Review reviews the 15/16 Line Sir Francis Bacon

Line Sir Francis Bacon – Bases

19 Comments

  1. Ed January 30, 2015 Reply

    Sold. Not sure of the construction of the Icelantic Nomad RKR, but these new SFBs seem pretty similar. Either way, every word here is exactly what I want to hear :D

  2. Noodles! January 30, 2015 Reply

    Is their a weight deference between 14/15 and 15/16?

    • Vlad February 1, 2015 Reply

      According to the 2015/16 Line catalogue, the new SFB comes in @3500 g per pair (I guess it is for 184 cm version), which translates into some 300-400 g weight gain per ski vs this year’s model.

      • Mortimer February 5, 2015 Reply

        Weight gain?!!
        I hope you mean weight loss.

        • Vlad February 6, 2015 Reply

          Yeah, should read weight loss.

  3. Dale February 4, 2015 Reply

    Love my 2014 bacons- Can’t wait to hear if I should upgrade next year. Thanks for the info- you guys have the best reviews and info.

  4. Dale February 10, 2015 Reply

    Any idea when demos/reviews will take place for you guys on the line skis this year?

  5. Jamie March 14, 2015 Reply

    Great looking ski.

    Lengths sound right. Underfoot sounds right – although I’ll be curious to see how this affects its float.

    Could this be the one to pull me out of my analysis paralysis.

    Any thoughts and how they are likely to ski are what they are likely to be most comparable with? Or what type of skier they are likely to suit?

    • Will Brown March 15, 2015 Reply

      Hey Jamie,

      Obviously we won’t know for sure till we get them on snow, but two things stick out to me on paper: the skis’ 17m turn radius (that’s pretty damn snappy) and the stated weight of 1,760 grams per ski in a 184 – that’s really damn light for an all-mountain ski (we’re getting into touring-ski territory with that weight). In fact, in thinking about that weight, the only ski I can think of in remotely the same neighborhood is the DPS Wailer 99 Pure3, which weighs 1,665 grams / ski, but it’s a little narrower than the Bacon and is probably considerably more directional all-mountain ski. In terms of shape, similar skis would seem to be the K2 Shreditor 102, though it’s a little heavier (but not all that heavy), and maybe the Faction CT 2.0, which is probably closer in weight to the Shreditor (probably not that heavy in its own right, but not as feathery as the Bacon would seem to be).

      With that said, I fully expect the Bacon to be SUPER quick (compared to almost any all-mountain ski wider than 95mm underfoot, and certainly for it’s width), given that radius and weight. So it ought to be very quick in bumps, super easy to throw around in the air, and it should carve pretty nicely, but I’m interested to see how hard it can be pushed when things get bumped up / cruddy. That firmer flex will either lend it some stability, despite the very light weight, or will make the ski feel too rigid for its weight. Who knows. In any case, I think this ski will almost certainly favor lighter skiers, or skiers with a light, more fluid and playful approach to terrain.

      Cheers,

      Will

      • Vladski March 15, 2015 Reply

        Sounds like a message to heavy skiers: grab a hold of the old SFB while you still can.

        • Ed April 13, 2015 Reply

          I am not an expert skier but, wouldn’t a stiffer ski (New Bacon) be better for a heavier skier? And the softer ski (current model) be better for lighter skiers?

          I have the 2013 SFB in 178cm and I love using them in almost any conditions, all the time. I had the bindings mounted in the “all mountain” position as I rarely, if ever, ride backwards or rails.

          For some reason, I am trying to convince myself that I need to upgrade to a 184cm SFB in the next year or two. I only weigh 190# so I’m not sure if it’s necessary (or wise). Anyway, looking forward to the review of the new SFB.

      • Jamie March 19, 2015 Reply

        That all sounds very promising.

        Having grown up skiing on skinny skis I’ve found it difficult getting used to the wider skis. I’m just not used to the more surfy feel although I did seem to find my mojo on a pair of Soul 7s in Hakuba earlier this year skiing fresh power in a nice open bowl.

        I’m also having trouble working out the right length for me. The 172 Soul 7 felt too short whereas I felt too far back on the 180. They were rentals so I’m not sure where the bindings were mounted.

        I’m not a good enough skier to know what I am looking for, haven’t skied enough skis and don’t have the technical knowledge to guide me through the endless choices of length, width, sidecut, rise and so on.

        I’m 172cm, 70ish kgs and a strong skier – albeit a soft 45yo white collar worker. I am looking for the elusive OSQ. I have skied mainly Japan in recent years but try to get to the NZ clubbies or Australian back-country for at least a couple of days each year. I am also planning a trip to Alaska this time next year. I typically keep my feet on the ground and enjoy controlled, smooth skiing rather than bombing down. I don’t jib at all but enjoy the odd 80s style trick and taking the odd drop and can do so comfortably. I also love skiing couloirs when they are available and tricky rock faces. However, my main skiing is either back-country touring (focus on downhill rather than up) and side-country.

        I’m convinced I can find a ski to take me from the relatively firm slopes of NZ too the bottomless powder of Japan – after all, we used to ski all conditions on slalom skis. I still pine for the feeling I got from a magnificent too-long pair of Elan Slalom skis. I wasn’t racing seriously and the extra length turned them into a useful club racing ski and gave me extra surface in powder. Man I loved those skis. Beat my previous shorter Rossi 4Gs hands down.

        After 16 years of infrequent skiing, I have been getting out again regularly and have discovered a love for skinning up to new places to ski. I have been content renting skis and not demanded too much from performance – until now. The problem is that I know nothing about the new ski technology. I am liking some skis that review as though I shouldn’t and hating some that I should love in theory. I’m putting a lot of it down to my own poor form, conditions on the day, poor choice of length or wrong binding mount position – all of which really makes choosing hard.

        I’ve tried a heap of skis so far this year and I haven’t loved the Soul 7 and really didn’t like the Sin 7. I did love the Mantra (180) and wanted to have a go on the shorter version. I also really liked the Bonafide (173) although I did feel like I lost the tails a bit (although that was probably my poor form). It was fantastic in nicely spaced soft bumps but I really got chucked around in bigger, firmer bumps. I also really didn’t like the Blizzard Scout at all as I felt that there was no real rebound.

        I have read a couple of your 101 articles and they have been really interesting and very helpful. It would be useful if you did a 101 on all the different features of a ski and what would appeal to one skier versus another (apologies if you’ve done this). Also, a 101 on binding mounts would be very helpful (again, apologies if you’ve done this).

        Hands down the best ski and bike site available. Would be great to know where in NZ you’ll be this year as I expect to be skiing the clubbies in late July.

      • Blister Member
        Jeff May 2, 2015 Reply

        Will- Looking forward to your full test and review. When do you think that will happen? Love your site. Keep up the great work!

        Jeff

  6. Dale March 26, 2015 Reply

    Well now I’m concerned that my weight (190lbs) will create a choppy-snow-stability issue compared to my current Bacons– I’m rethinking the new models. Everything else sounded great. Hopefully this will be adressed in the upcoming review.

  7. peter May 19, 2015 Reply

    What was wrong with the 2014 Bacon? I’m 6′ 1″; 180 pounds and ski Alta exclusively. At 63 I’m still flying and the Bacon’s “solidness” worked well for me. The only thing I wanted more of was a bit more “pop” (or more of a snappy character) but I always thought there was a trade off between snappy versus solid, especially in crud. So I am curious about the new balance in these qualities. I am doubtful that the shorter width under foot will be a good thing. Why reduce this but keep the turning radius the same? Anyway, I alpine on 190’s and tele on my older 184’s. The 190’s were a great improvement for me when bombing it or cruising at higher speeds. I may get an old pair of 190’s for insurance!

  8. peter August 16, 2015 Reply

    Had a pair of 184 SFB’s first in 2011. Loved them except felt a bit short (I’m 6’1′, 175 pounds, ski Alta – oh and I’m 64). Started tele skiing too so put tele bindings on the 184’s and alpine on the 190 SFB’s I bought in 2012. OMG the 190’s were even better! Faster more stable cruising and better in crud and pow. First thing I did when I heard they were changing the ski entirely was buy another (2015) pair of 190’s. As far as I am concerned 108 under foot is perfect. And yeah the SFB’s are a bit heavy carrying them in the parking lot and the first run on them after a day of tele skiing but after that not a thought except how solid and forgiving they are. And so fun, whether in the pow, cruising, or playing around on the tails too. I don’t ski hard bumps at 64 anyway. Although the new version might be better my guess is for what I want it won’t be. But good luck! Skis do tend to always get better, except when they don’t.

  9. Blister Member
    Gregory January 11, 2016 Reply

    I demoed the 2016 184cm SFB this weekend at Alta. The snow was in great shape.. soft, and plenty of it. I am 5′-8″ 155lbs. I found the ski very difficult to work in the bumps skiers left of Extrovert, and turned it back in after doing one long bump run and a few groomers. I just couldn’t flex the nose enough to make it work well for me in the bumps. It felt very good on the groomers. I had skied the 172 2014-2015 SFB the day before and thought it was fantastic in all the bumps, (both skis were set at -4cm, closest I could get to Eric’s choice because of where the Alta Ski shop had the plates mounted at the traditional line). I don’t know what impact that has on my evaluation of the ski. I am not a great bump skier and the shorter 2014-15 Bacon made me much better an more capable than I have been on any other ski in the bumps. Obviously the shorter ski made it easier for me. Coming from a non-experts view, it may be that my form isn’t great, I am not skiing fast enough in the bumps to flex the nose or whatever but I just couldn’t make it work in that terrain. I currently ski the 174 Moment Deathwish which I am very happy with. As a contrast I think my Deathwish feels more confident going fast and straight and the old Bacon allowed me to do the bumps off of Catherine’s, Wildcat and other areas better than I can on my Deathwish. Also as a reference I think I like heavier medium flex skis vs. lighter stiffer skis.

  10. Roland November 21, 2016 Reply

    Bought a pair of 2016 Bacons late last season and when time has now come to put a pair of marker king pins on them (mainly backcountry, no park nor switch or airs), I am at a loss when it comes mounting points: seems that early versions (like mine) of the ski has only one indication: ‘Recommended midsole’ at -2cm (measured distance from true center), whereas later iterations seem to state Eric’s choice at -2cm and Recommended at -6cm. Looking at your reviews, this seems to be confirmed by looking at pics; initial review of skis shows -2cm only (text as above), wheras pics in later reviews show -2cm and -6cm. Anybody else encountered this conundrum reg their bacons? Seems I have gotten some kind of early production pair? Finally: assume I should just go ahead and add -4cm to get to the real, final recommended position (acc to Line) if skiing ? Thanks!

  11. Mark October 14, 2017 Reply

    Pretty disappointing ski. Supper stiff and light, gets bounced around easily

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