2016 Radar Vapor Review

HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
edited June 2016 in Ski Tests

VaporRevew16

Intro

The 2016 Vapor is the 5th high end ski from Radar* and is a completely new shape from the 2014 / 2015 Vapor. Manufactured from 100% carbon laminates and a PVC core, the Lithium Vapor is one of the  truly elite skis in the sport today. Radar also makes slightly less exotic versions of the Vapor from the same mold (Graphite Vapor and Alloy Vapor).

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General Feel

If this review had to be one word long that word would be “Refined”. The Vapor is not the fastest or the hardest turning or the most radical anything. It is a remarkable blend of speed and stability and predictability. The Vapor is one of the very best short line skis reviewed to date and is also one of the most user friendly and forgiving skis reviewed to date.

From Second Wake to Ball

Perhaps the one surprising attribute of the Vapor is its stability off the second wake. Typically slower skis are more stable and faster skis are looser at edge change. Skiers on faster skis often find it more difficult to stay connected and maintain rope tension after edge change. The Vapor is a legitimately very fast ski yet is surprisingly stable and tactile at edge change. The result of this stability is that it is easier for the skier to maintain additional connection through and after the edge change. This one attribute greatly helps the skier do what is needed to round more balls.

After edge change the ski easily flows out wide and early in front of the ball. The ski is not over stable but is simply comfortable approaching the ball.  

Toe Side (Off Side) Turn

Turns on the Vapor are a decreasing radius arc ending with substantial angle. Turns finish less abruptly and the ski carries more speed back to the inside than the previous Vapor.

Unless the skier does something unwise, the tip of the ski naturally stays down. Turns end with as much angle as anyone could want. Impatient skiers may find that pushing too hard at apex will result in more angle than anticipated but recovery from imprudent maneuvers is another of the Vapor’s strengths.

Heel Side (On Side) Turn

There is no such thing as a truly symmetrical ski or symmetrical skiing. Skiers all do things a little different on On Side vs Off Side.  On Side turns on the Vapor are as similar to Toe Side turns as possible.

The previous Vapors turned On Side fast and sharp if the skier kept their weight forward approaching the ball. Skiers should strive to be forward coming into the ball on any ski, but the 2016 Vapor gives the skier more latitude than expected approaching On Side.

Should the skier panic or attempt to “drop the bomb” at apex, the ski will resist stalling and maintain water speed. No ski can make up for all skier mistakes, but the Vapor is extremely forgiving.

From Ball to Second Wake

The tip almost always stays down exiting the ball, and the ski makes ample speed before the wakes.

Most modern skis reward skiers who do not overload from the ball to the wakes. The Vapor is moderately forgiving in this regard.

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Conclusion

With almost every ski reviewed to date, there has always been a quirk of the ski that stands out and a recommended focus for the skier to get the most out of the ski. In the case of the 2016 Lithium Vapor, you can forget about the ski and work on your skiing.

What about ski setup? I put the fin where Radar (Chris Rossi) told me and have not moved it. Rossi did recommend I try moving my bindings forward ⅛” and that worked a tiny bit better for my hardest pass. Original Settings 29.75 / 2.460 / 6.960 / 0.748 / 9


*MPD, RS-1, Strada, 2014-2015 Vapor, 2016 Vapor

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Tagged:
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Comments

  • jbwannjbwann Posts: 39 Baller
    Most anticipated review of the year! I need to switch it seems....the this MOASS!!!! Thanks again to @Horton for another great ski review. Chris Rossi's support on Ball of Spray for this ski with Radar brand skiers has been nothing short top notch. A lot to be proud of. It's been nice to see such enthusiasm for this ski.
  • gregygregy Posts: 2,378 Mega Baller
    The factory support is definitely part of makes this ski so awesome!
  • ozskiozski Posts: 1,379
    The fact that your not working through tons of fin setups speaks volumes. I've never ridden a Radar anything but they sure make nice boots... Might have to test one just to see, you can't argue with the number of skiers doing so well on them.
    'Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.'' Boat 2005 Nautique 196 6L ZO - Ski: KD Platinum

  • skidawgskidawg Posts: 3,082 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    This ski makes the rope feel long!!!
    Mr. Mom is Horton's favorite movie!
    MattPswc5150
  • HortonHorton Posts: 23,672 Administrator
    @ob1 what are your settings?

    Support BallOfSpray by supporting the companies that support BallOfSpray

    Connelly / DBSkis /   Denali / Eden Ski Lake  / Goode / HO Syndicate / MasterCraft / Masterline

    O'Brien / Performance Ski and Surf / PTM Edge / Stokes / Reflex / Radar / Wakeye

  • BoozeBooze Posts: 277 Baller
    @OB1 - weight?
  • gavskigavski Posts: 119 Baller
    have you tried the Rossi update numbers yet? They look 'fairly' close to what you have, just a binding move back to 29 3/4....
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,414 Mega Baller
    running new settings suggested by Trent at the BOS. I hadn't been on the Vapor in 3 weeks. First day back on it four at 38 five times, five at 38 once, ran it. Second day went 4/6 at 38 and the misses were operator error -- could have just as easily been 6/6. The Vapor is the real deal. Thanks to @tfin and @brooks and @skidawg for their help! I might have found my ski!
    Jim Ross
    skidawgMattPToddL
  • skidawgskidawg Posts: 3,082 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    That's awesome news, leave it at home next BOS cash-U might beat me
    Mr. Mom is Horton's favorite movie!
  • Fehlindra Fehlindra Posts: 183 Baller
    yee leave it at home but share your numbers
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,414 Mega Baller
    @skidawg - it's good to have goals!
    Jim Ross
    skidawg
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,414 Mega Baller
    Yikes! 38 head and tail today. Man is this ski working!
    Jim Ross
    TFIN6balls
  • TFINTFIN Posts: 71 Open or 55K Rated Skier
    Glad to hear it @Razorskier1
    skier2788
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,495 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    @razorskier1 six 38's in two days...that's running pretty well. Pretty happy with mine, still thinking I may go from 67 to 68 next spring, but also curious to try out the settings you are running.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
    ozski
  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,115 Mega Baller
    @6balls - I'm loving mine still as well and have more PB's on this ski than any I've owned. And oddly, in spite of that, I also wonder if moving to a 68" would yield even more results. I'm 5'11 and 185lbs and ski into, but never through 38. Curious about your weight, and thoughts on moving to a 68?
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
    ***Robbed out of Hundreds of Panda Worthy Posts***
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,414 Mega Baller
    @Texas6 -- I'm 6 feet and all of 190 on a 67, but these things are often personal preference.
    Jim Ross
    Texas6
  • DeanoskiDeanoski Posts: 684 Solid Baller
    @Texas6 I'm 6'1' 195lbs and on a 67 34mph -35 skier
    Texas6luckyosun
  • 6balls6balls Posts: 4,495 ★★★Triple Panda Award Recipient ★★★
    edited October 2016
    @Texas6 I'm 5'11" and 185-190 and currently riding the 67. Feels awesome at 36 but at 34 maybe a little small. Ran 35 at 36 on it, 1@39 at 34 on it, and an off the dock cold 35 off opener on it at 34. It's almost the bomb...but have played with settings fair amount so far. Would like to trial a 68.
    Dave Ross--die cancer die
    Texas6
  • Texas6Texas6 Posts: 2,115 Mega Baller
    Yeah, we're kind of on that line of "just give it a try and see what happens" - thx for the input guys. @Razorskier, curious where your bindings are at this point after dialing in with Trent?
    Daryn Dean - Lakes of Katy, TX
    ***Robbed out of Hundreds of Panda Worthy Posts***
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,414 Mega Baller
    @Texas6 -- 29.625. My conversation with Trent was about how I was having trouble with the ski sticking in the turn on the offside. While I was running 38 on it with Rossi's settings, sometimes it would just stop on the offside and chuck me off the front. Went deeper, shorter, and a bit more DFT. Those changes seemed to make the "window" bigger on the ski. Specifically, the ski lets me move around a little more without stopping and, surprisingly, the ski will now let me put the hammer down behind the boat and still come up for a nice pre-turn and turn.
    Jim Ross
    Texas6
  • gregygregy Posts: 2,378 Mega Baller
    @Razorskier1 I was having the same problem, I could be cruising through a passes then out of blue I was in the water. I kept moving the bindings back and it had little effect. I ended up with bindings forward shorter, deeper, more dft. I'm using small adjustments of DFT to adjust for water. Few thousands forward if it hard to turn and few thousands back if overturning. I think there still some room for improvement might have to go see Trent.
  • thagerthager Posts: 3,815 Mega Baller
    @Razorskier1 What settings are you running? I am feeling the same things on mine.
    Stir vigorously then leave!
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,414 Mega Baller
    @thager - it works so good I wanted to keep them top secret, but here they are:

    29.625
    2.505
    6.855
    0.755
    9 degrees
    Jim Ross
  • thagerthager Posts: 3,815 Mega Baller
    edited October 2016
    @Razorskier1 Thanks Jim! Needed a starting point. The shallow settings were feeling like a side slide on my offside turns causing me to lose space. This should help.
    Stir vigorously then leave!
  • mbabiashmbabiash Posts: 298 Baller
    Those settings are what I posted a while back. I've passed them on to several people and they all love Trents numbers.
    thager
  • UWSkierUWSkier Posts: 573 Crazy Baller
    Shorter and deeper seems to be working for many. Know a couple other guys running this setup and enjoying the results.
  • thagerthager Posts: 3,815 Mega Baller
    @Razorskier1 Skied your settings today and all I can say is WOW!!!! Wish I had them last summer!
    Stir vigorously then leave!
    Horton[Deleted User]
  • Razorskier1Razorskier1 Posts: 3,414 Mega Baller
    nice @thager!
    Jim Ross
  • JC McCavitJC McCavit Posts: 434 Baller
    @mbabiash - Are those the settings Trent is using on his 2017 Vapor Pro-Build or were those settings for the 2016 Vapor?
    JC McCavit
  • mbabiashmbabiash Posts: 298 Baller
    Pro build. But I had the same fin on my 16. So those worked well for both.
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