2017-2018 Line Mordecai, 193 cm

I generally agree with what Jonathan wrote in our First Look at the 193 Mordecai, so here, I’ll be adding to and qualifying a lot of his information.

Of course, the big question here is how similar or different the 186 cm Mordecai is to the 193 cm version — and the punchline here is that the 193 doesn’t actually feel that similar to the 186. In fact, if we were to do that blacked-out topsheet test that Jonathan wrote about earlier, I’m not sure I’d recognize the 193 as the bigger brother of the 186 cm Mordecai we reviewed.

Cy Whitling reviews the Line Mordecai for Blister

Cy Whitling on the 193 cm Line Mordecai.

Size

Let’s get this out of the way: I’m not a huge dude — not the football-player-turned-ski-racer type. I weigh about 180 lbs right now, and I don’t have the sort of thighs that ripple beneath spandex in beer league start gates. I stand somewhere between 6’ and 6’1, and I was the scrappy kid trying to play forward in basketball even though I was too small. I generally ride skis in the 184-189 cm range, and one of my favorite skis was the 189 K2 Shreditor 112, which measured just a half a centimeter shorter than the 193 cm Mordecai. So I’m not the guy complaining on the internet that nobody makes a good 195 cm ski, but I do ski skis this length pretty regularly.

I did, however, feel like the 186 cm Mordecai was a touch too short for me, not because I simply refuse to ski skis that short, but because it didn’t feel as stable as some similarly playful ~184 cm skis. So, I felt that the 193 cm version might be a better fit for me. And it was, in some regards.

Flex

Jonathan described the 193 cm Mordecai’s flex pattern as:
Tips: 8-8.5
Shovels: 8.5-9
In front of Toe Piece: 10
Underfoot: 10
Behind Heel piece: 10-9
Tails: 8.5

I’d agree, this is a pretty consistently stiff ski. No noticeable hinges or butter zones. What does that mean on the hill? Well, several things. This is a big playful ski, but not a big floppy ski. It’s very much not a 189 cm Hellbent, or something similar.

I also found this stiff flex to be less forgiving than the slightly softer 186 cm version. When I got bucked forward or back seat on the 193 cm, I found that the ski didn’t flex and absorb me, bouncing me back to center. Instead, it either wheelied out, or kept running until I mustered the strength to center myself. Bigger skiers should have an easier time with this, but I found the 193 cm’s flex pattern to be the biggest thing distinguishing from the 186 cm version.

Sure, this is a longer ski, but I didn’t notice the length difference as much as I noticed the flex difference. For example, in the aforementioned hypothetical blacked-out-topsheets test, I think I’d find that the 189 cm K2 Shreditor 112 skied much more like a longer 186 cm Mordecai than the 193 cm version. The Shreditor’s flex is much more similar, and it feels more like a natural sibling to the 186 Mordecai than the 193 cm Mordecai does.

To be very clear, I’m not saying the flex difference is a bad thing, it’s just a noticeable one. I’m used to skis getting stiffer as they get longer, it just feels like this ski got much stiffer than a ski usually would with that 7 cm length increase. Which, honestly, in the big picture, is sort of awesome. Skiing needs anomalies like this, because not every person fits perfectly into the common sizing / flex structure. If every 193 cm ski had a flex pattern that felt intuitive for me, a 180 lb man, we’d have a bunch of bigger skiers folding skis in half all the time. (And we do hear from 220 lb – 260 lb skiers frequently, so we certainly know you guys are out there.)

Shape

This is where the 193 cm Mordecai feels exactly like it’s little sibling. Both skis are happy to make a huge variety of turn shapes, and both are very, very easy to turn. They also feel light in the air, and have low swing weights relative to their measured weights, which I believe is a product of the combination of shape and mount point. The Mordecai’s taper makes for a very fun pow-slashing tool — even with the stiffer flex — and I found it did a good job of making the ski feel shorter, and keeping my edges from catching when I under- or over-rotated spins.

Mount Point

As Jonathan mentioned, this ski has a very progressive mount point. -2.1 cm is about as far forward as I’ve skied recently. I usually really enjoy mounts in the -2 to -4 range — that’s the sort of mount point I started out skiing, and they usually make me feel jibbier than I really am.

While riding the lift, however, I was surprised — I didn’t feel like I had that much more ski than usual in front of me, and mathematically speaking, I didn’t. The 193 cm Mordecai with a -2 mount point doesn’t have that much more tip than say a 186 cm ON3P Kartel 116 with a -5 mount. But as soon as I made my first turn I realized I had a lot more tail than I’m used to. It took me a few runs to get used to the longer tails. At first I kept banging them together and catching them on bumps after I thought I’d passed them, but they quickly became pretty intuitive.

Still, I ended up bumping them back to -4 just to see how they felt. I didn’t feel like this change drastically impacted the stability or playfulness of the ski (the flex has way more of an impact there), but moving back made it so I had a little less tail to worry about back there.

The more centered, recommended mount point of the Mordecai is great in the air though. I felt like shifties and grabs were much easier, and while I don’t really spin past 360 (on purpose at least), I had no problem spinning the 193 cm Mordecai. They felt very balanced and predictable in the air and on switch landings.
Point is, my recommendation is that you try -4 cm if you aren’t spinning, but stick with the recommended line (-2.1 cm) if you are.

Downhill Performance

I skied the Mordecai in a wide range of conditions, from fresh snow, to dust on crust, to icy park days, and usually we’d break down this section by how the ski performed in each condition. However, if we did that you’d find that I was repeating the same things over and over again in each category. So instead, I’d like to break the Mordecai down in two broader categories: Stability and Maneuverability / Playfulness.

Stability (compared to the 186 cm Mordecai)

Longer skis should generally be more stable than their shorter counterparts, but that leap doesn’t always have a 1-to-1 correspondence with the size change (e.g., you don’t always get a ski that’s, say, 3% more stable per cm of additional length). That’s because stability isn’t simply a product of length — mount point, flex pattern, camber, and shape all play a role.

But with the Mordecai, both models share the same mount point, camber, and shape. So it seems pretty fair to say that the stability difference should be a product of length and flex pattern. The 193 cm Mordecai is a lot stiffer than the 186 cm, which is usually a big plus in the stability department. It’s also (obviously) longer. But I didn’t find that the 193 cm Mordecai was really that much more stable and predictable in most conditions than its shorter sibling.

Even in the 193 cm length with the stiffer flex, this is by no means a “haul ass and take chances ski.” Sure, in perfect powder, I found it to have a very high speed limit, but in anything less than perfect, it feels like it has just a marginally higher speed limit than the 186 cm version before things start to fall apart. Why?

The Mordecai has a playful shape and profile with plenty of taper and rocker, and although it’s not a terribly light ski, it’s not that damp, either. It doesn’t do well trying to blast through chopped up powder, and it feels pretty scary on rough, firm snow.

There are plenty of similarly playful skis that are shorter than the 193 cm Mordecai yet still feel more stable and have higher speed limits (the 184 cm Moment Blister Pro, 186 cm ON3P Kartel 116, and 184 cm Moment Deathwish all come to mind.)

So if you’ve skied the 186 cm Mordecai and liked it, but want something more stable — especially in variable conditions — I don’t think bumping up to the 193 cm version is your best option.

Playfulness / Maneuverability

So if this ski isn’t going to be supremely stable, is it at least going to be fun?

Yes. Very much yes.

The 193 cm Mordecai’s stiff flex means that it’s not a butter machine, but it’s still very, very maneuverable — both on the ground and in the air. It responds well to any input, and it is happy to turn, slash, and stop wherever you need it to. In short, it doesn’t really feel like a 193 cm ski.

Cy Whitling reviews the Line Mordecai for Blister

Cy Whitling on the 193 cm Line Mordecai.

It takes a little more work to ski than the 186 cm version, and shorter skiers will probably feel more overwhelmed. But I found that this was a very approachable ski for its length. The progressive mount helps with that, as does the shape and profile.

I did notice that extra length in tight trees. This ski is not as easy to billy goat when things are really tight — there is a lot of tip and tail to get caught on things.

So if I felt that the Mordecai didn’t get that much more stable with the length bump, I also didn’t feel that it lost that much playfulness either. This is still a very fun, relatively easy ski.

Who’s It For?

This is usually the easy part, the part where we connect all the dots from the review and sum it up nicely with something like “skiers who liked the 186 cm Mordecai but wanted a little more stability at the expense of some playfulness will love the 193 cm version.” But while that’s the easiest line, I don’t think it’s quite the correct one here. There are plenty of other options for skiers who like the 186 cm Mordecai but want more stability — but that don’t want 7 cm of extra ski. The 184 cm Bibby Pro, 186 cm Kartel 116, 188 cm Black Crows Anima, and 184 cm Deathwish all fulfill those requirements pretty well. The Mordecai just doesn’t get that much more stable as it gets longer.

So who should go for the 193 Mordecai? Skiers looking for a long, stiff ski, with a progressive mount that is very playful. It might be better to think of the 193 cm Mordecai not as the longer version of the 186, but as a different ski altogether. Do you like long skis but also like taper? Do you like playful shapes but hate noodly flexes? This is the ski for you.

Bottom Line

It’s sometimes easy to get caught between sizes of a ski, to want the playfulness of the shorter length with the stability of the longer. The 193 cm Line Mordecai offers no such conundrum. It’s not the best choice if you’re looking for a more stable version than the 186 cm ski, but if you want a long, stiff, playful, pow-oriented ski, the 193 cm Mordecai is pretty unique.

Stay Tuned

Blister reviewer, Jason Hutchins, is also currently putting time in on the 193 Mordecai, and we will be posting his take on the ski in the next couple of weeks.

NEXT: Rocker Profile Pics

1 Comment

  1. Ash October 18, 2018 Reply

    HI there,
    I’m pretty keen on this ski, but I’m getting myself in a twist re: what length!? My current go-to powder ski is the good ol’ Mr Pollard’s Opus, which I’ve got in a 178 and it feels like that’s a good length for my height/weight (5’8’/154). I find it pretty stable, and has plenty of float (maybe even too much – I can’t sink these things!). I would have just pulled the trigger on the 179s BUT I skied some Black Crow Atris this year (178) and they felt really short. I realise that they’re a totally different ski, but I’m spooked by the numbers :)
    Any thoughts will be greatly appreciated!
    Thanks,
    Ash

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