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2016 Radar Vapor Review


Horton
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http://www.ballofspray.com/images/2016/Vapor/VaporRevew16.JPG

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).

http://www.ballofspray.com/images/2016/Vapor/VaporRevew16-2.JPG
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.

http://www.ballofspray.com/images/2016/Vapor/VaporRevew16-3.JPG

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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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.
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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.
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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!
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@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?
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@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.
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@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.
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@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.
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@mbabiash - Thanks, there is a bit of confusion concerning the late model 2016 Vapors that have the new 2017 fin and fin block which is the same as the new 2017 Vapor Pro-Build, and the 2016 Vapors that have the 2016 fin and fin block. If you have a late model 2016 Vapor or 2017 Vapor Pro-Build with the new fin and fin block, you have to be very careful you don't try and chase 2016 Vapor settings that have last years fin and fin block, they are different! I'd like to give a big shout out to @SkiJay for bringing the difference between the 2017 fin and fin block to the attention of all of us here at ballofspray, @SkiJay recommendations are spot on.
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I have an early model 2016 and have 1 set with deep short # and like OB1 I loved it!

 

water is 58 air 57

 

2.505 6,855 75.5 10 wing FB 29 5/8 I'm 195lb on a 67

 

Thx to the info on this thread or I would of never tried such a big fin change.

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10 Deg...interesting. I am lucky travel back and forth between orlando and the UK on a regular basis...So going from warm to cold water is very familiar to me...i have even managed to take a warm water set (83F) and a cold water set (53F) within 18hrs of each other...

 

I have become v sensitive to how different the ski feels through the water.

Firstly, Cold water is 'draggy' as hell - i can feel it right from the pull out for my gates..As a result, i have to take 1 deg of wing OFF to get the ski moving without feeling like i am dragging a plastic bag behind me..

Secondly, the ski reacts so much faster - i have to tone down all my movements. As a result, the 1st pass on cold water is always a shocker. Best analogy i can find is you spend 1 week skiing powder all day long long and on the last day - you have nothing but boiler plate ice.....

 

Anyway, i will certainly re-look at adding more wing to the above settings - the ski felt like it was on nitro...had the wind set to 8deg...

 

 

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