Pugski Test Team

Testing skis so you don't have to.
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the_dps_logo_HiRes.jpg
F-Cassiar-82.png
DPS Cassair F82
Dimensions: 124-82-107
Radius: [email protected]
Sizes: 168, 178, 185
Size tested: 178
Design: Carryover

Philpug: (from last year) OK, now on to the Cassiar F82, which is available in 168, 178, and 185. We are testing the 178 cm length with dimensions of 124-82-107 and a 15m turning radius. The F82 is that 80/20 frontside ski that can be skied off piste and in the trees. The shape, along with the early rise in the tip, lends itself to being fun in the bumps as well. As I have said before, visually, the Foundation collection offers some of the cleanest and most stunning graphics around; unfortunately, pictures don't do them justice. As with our other Foundation skis, we mounted the F82s with Tyrolia Attack 13 demos and started the ski off with a proper tune from Skis & More. Soren set them up to shine on the groomers, and shine they did. Read Full "Long Term Test" HERE.

  • Who is it ski for? Yes, this is a great 80/20 ski with a huge sweet spot; it will work for someone who does not want to have to work the ski every single run.
  • Who is it not for? Name droppers. No, DPS doesn't have an extensive frontside resume, but don't look past this fine-looking ski as an option.
  • Insider tip: Sizing is dead on, as are the mount points. If any buyers are reading, stock this ski (and the Uschi 82).
18 Foundaition F95-TC.png
DPS Cassair F95
Dimensions: 129-95-116
Radius: [email protected]
Size tested: 168, 178, 185
Design: Carryover

Philpug: (from last year)I took the F95 out again on 1/9. Conditions were cold, crisp and chalky. Where I have posted that many of the 95mm skis are skiing short, even the predecessor Cassiar 95, I have found this newly shaped Foundation F95 skis true to length. The on-snow feel of the new F95 is just as smooth in feel as it is in looks; every type of turn I have asked the ski to make, it makes. I took the 95 on the groomers off of Comstock and Zephyr, the bumps under the Backside lift and the trees in Sugarpine Glades on Lookout. No problem. Late in the day when the lifts were staying open longer than my legs had life, the Cassiar just said, Fine, we will take it easy. It is a very refined feeling ski. Read full "Long Term Test" HERE.


  • Who is it for? Individuals who aren’t looking to compromise. These skis are on the finesse side of the scale and reward skiers who are neutral on their skis; they do not need to be driven to get the most performance.
  • Who is it not for? 11/10th skiers.
  • Insider tip: Since these are preproduction models, I asked what was going to change; DPS replied that it would make them 5 to 10 percent stiffer and add a bit more camber. Perfect: these are the exact two changes we would like to see.
F-Wailer-99.png
DPS Wailer F99
Dimensions: 123-99-113
Radius: [email protected]
Sizes: 168, 178, 184
Size tested: 184
Design: Carryover

Philpug: (from last year) The F99 -- with dimensions of 128-99-117 and an 18m turning radius in the 184cm -- skis differently than the Wailer 99s mentioned above. It is a lot stronger and has a much longer wheelbase, making it feel every centimeter of that 184 length ... and then some. I cannot wait to let @Drahtguy Kevin get on these, first to see how he likes them, then to hear the colorful description that only Kevin can put together.

As with the Cassiar F82, @Alexzn and I skied the Wailer F99 at Squaw Valley, trading it back and forth and comparing it to a Renoun ski, the Endurance 98. There is no comparison: these two skis have completely different personalities. Where the Renoun skis short and nimble, the Wailer F99 is stable and wants to charge -- again, this is the bad boy of the Foundation collection. The ski just wants to run. Both skis were 184, but where I had no problem playing with the Renoun, the Wailer took all of my attention. Not having an ego, I got @Alexzn on the F99 because he tends to ski a bigger ski than I do -- his daily driver is a 189 Kästle FX95 HP -- so the Wailer F99 fit his size better. I will let him post his own impressions. Read full "Long Term Test" HERE.

  • Who is it for? Skiers, not posers.
  • Who is it not for? Finesse skiers; the Wailer F99 wants to run.
  • Insider tip: From 176 to a big 184, the average guy might fall in between sizes. Don't be lulled by the numbers
18 Foundaition F106-TC.png
DPS Wailer F106
Dimensions: 142-106-125
Radius: [email protected]
Sizes: 168, 178, 185, 191
Size tested: 185
Design: Carryover

Philpug: (from last year) Maybe I am getting old but I am liking easy skis more and more all the time. The Wailer 106 with the new Foundation construction is just that, easy. Now, just because a ski is easy, doesn't mean it isn't good. We can now have easy, fun, and playful at only the cost of the Nth degree in top end; to me, that is an acceptable price to pay. If I want to charge, many skis will do that. The shape and feel of the new Foundation series is just nice and workable. These are 185s and the length is there when I want it but it doesn't get in the way in the tight trees of Northstar's Lookout Mountain. The Wailer 106 is just a deceptively easy ski to ski.Read full "Long Term Test" HERE.
  • Who is it for? Individuals who aren’t looking to compromise. These skis are on the finesse side of the scale and reward skiers who are neutral on their skis; they do not need to be driven to get the most performance.
  • Who is it not for? 11/10th skiers.
  • Insider tip: Could very well be the best balance of a all mountain One-Oh-Something ski
A-Wailer-106.png
DPS Alchemist Wailer 106
Dimensions: 138-106-124
Radius: TBD
Size tested: 186
Design: All New

Philpug: DPS has great shaped skis, and it creates different constructions for different skiers, which is a novel way to build skis, and a loyal following. The new Alchemist construction is the flagship of DPS’s new builds, and when put in the highly versatile Wailer 106 shape, it has a winner. Where the Alchemist differs from many of the other One Oh Somethings is in its turn shape: the ski feels like it is a 92mm ski with a 15m radius, although the numbers are nowhere near that. It is deceptive, with a nimbleness not found in other skis in this segment.
  • Who is it for? The nonconformist.
  • Who is it not for? Those who make figure 11s; these like to turn.
  • Insider tip: Not merely a Pure4, but a much better ski.

Women's

F-Nina-99.png
DPS Nina F99
Dimensions: 123-99-113
Radius: [email protected]
Size tested: 158
Design: Carryover

Tricia: (from last year)The Nina F99 has the same dimensions as the previous Nina 99 but sports the new Foundation construction. I found the F99 to be compliant, with nice float in the moguls and glades, but it took a little extra effort to make turn transitions when it was necessary to get back on the groomers.
  • Who is it for? Someone looking for a lightweight ski for trees and off piste.
  • Who is it not for? Groomer Greta.
  • Insider tip: I think the Nina may ski a little better mounted 1 cm forward.

SkiNurse: (from last year) This is the DPS that first made me giggle last season. At 99 underfoot, it is the perfect all-mountain ski including steeps, trees, and bumps. Turns quickly in the trees and bumps and floats effortlessly in chopped-up powder. Holds up well in the groomer, but not so much in the hard pack. LOVES anything off piste.
  • Who is it for? The girl looking for a light and lively yet powerful ski.
  • Who is it not for? The intermediate or novice skier who won't appreciate all it has to offer.
  • Insider tip: Let this ski rip all over the mountain and embrace the giggles!
F-Uschi-82.png
DPS Uschi F82
Dimensions:120-82-104
Radius: [email protected]
Size tested: 158
Design: Carryover

Tricia: (from last year)The Uschi F82 was one of the first DPS skis I’ve been on in a long time that wasn’t from the Pure3 line. As opposed to the Pure3’s carbon construction, the Foundation series uses a wood core, which gives the Uschi (pronounced oo-she) a warmer feel. Whether on groomers, bumps, or powder, I think the “F” must stand for “fun”!
  • Who is it for? Individuals who aren’t looking to compromise. These skis are on the finesse side of the scale and reward skiers who are neutral on their skis; they do not need to be driven to get the most performance.
  • Who is it not for? 11/10th skiers.
  • Insider tip: Since these are preproduction models, I asked what was going to change; DPS replied that it would make them 5 to 10 percent stiffer and add a bit more camber. Perfect: these are the exact two changes we would like to see.
SkiNurse: (from last year) At 82 underfoot, DPS has a winner with a ski that can go up on edge to carve, but also loves the soft bumps. Playful and light but not at all wussy. Doesn’t do well in the chopped-up bigger bumps or crud. This ski will make an intermediate skier feel more advanced.
  • Who is it for? The female skier who likes all mountain, but not big mountain.
  • Who is it not for? Big big-mountain skiers.
  • Insider tip: Great all-around everyday, non-powder ski.
F-Yvette-112.png
DPS Yvette F112
Dimensions: 135-112-124
Radius: [email protected]
Size tested: 158
Design: Carryover

SkiNurse: (from last year) I was a bit concerned taking these out in the conditions that day. At 112 mm underfoot, this is considered big for me, but the rep persuaded me to go have fun. I happened to be lucky and pretty much got the rope drop up in the bowl -- i.e., untracked, knee-deep snow -- and these skis just wanted to do big GS powder turns! What a thrill! Not only did they perform in the perfect powder conditions, but they also made tight, effortless on-the-edge turns on the way back to the tent.
  • Who is it for? The skier who loves everything but hard pack and bump runs. You might not ski this often during the season, but you’ll be happy to have it when the time is right.
  • Who is it not for? Racers, bump freaks, and people who don’t like big mountains.
  • Insider tip: If you can afford it, get it.
18 Foundaition A106-TC.png
DPS Zelda 106 Alchemist
Dimensions: 130-106-120
Radius: [email protected]
Sizes: 158, 168, 178
Size tested: 168
Design: All New

Tricia: DPS is changing its carbon construction line after many years of success with the Pure3 series. The Alchemist construction of the Zelda 106 has a bit more taper in the tip shape, which changes the quickness of a turn but offers more versatility for skinning and seeking backcountry turns. I skied the Zelda 106 Alchemist in a variety of conditions at Whistler, ranging from fluffy cold powder to heavy wet snow and skied-out crud. While it took more effort to initiate a turn in the heavier snow, the lightweight construction was a dream in the fluff and the steep bowls.
  • Who is it for? Someone looking for a lightweight ski with enough float for powder days in the bowls.
  • Who is it not for? Someone looking for a damp ski to ski powder and trees.
  • Insider tip: If you’re looking for a ski like this but want something a little more damp, look to its Foundation counterpart.
18 Foundaition Zelda 106-TC.png
DPS Zelda 106 Foundation
Dimensions 133-106-122
Radius: [email protected]
Sizes: 158, 168, 178
Size tested: 168
Design: Carryover

Tricia: With its traditional tip shape and carbon/bamboo/glass core, the DPS Zelda 106 Foundation stands out as a versatile ski with enough float to excel on a powder day and enough shape to make a quick turn when you need to make a split-second decision. The dampness of the construction makes it stable and calm in the choppiest of conditions. I had the chance to ski the Zelda 106 Foundation back to back with other skis in its class, in a variety of conditions, and I always came back with a smile on my face.
  • Who is it for? A skier looking for a narrowish powder ski that will hold up til the day gives out.
  • Who is it not for? Someone looking for an all-mountain ski with a frontside bias.
  • Insider tip: If you’re looking for something a little more backcountry-oriented, look at the Alchemist version of this ski.
 

squill

Getting on the lift
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Mar 21, 2017
Posts
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I spent most of my time at OR and WWSRA(before the tent blew away) swapping between Alchemist and Foundation models in the 99/106/112 sizes but ended up finding the 106 Foundation to be one of the best skis. Super intuitive, tons of energy return, loves high edge angles even in junk snow... Maybe a little more rebound in the Alchemist models but there was a definite speed limit in variable snow compared to the Foundation. Wasn't a big fan of the tail rocker in the 112, but I'm biased towards flat tails and although the weight difference was very noticeable I didn't find the Foundation to be anywhere near the word heavy.
 

ScottB

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Joined
Oct 29, 2016
Posts
623
Location
Boston
Colin Chapman would approve, lighter is better.
Phil,
Can you expand a little on your thoughts on the ski. I hear they are great "tight tree" skis and would like to use them in the East at mtn's like Mad River Glen and Jay. These would be the wider of a two ski quiver. They are on sale right now and I am seriously thinking about getting a pair. Do you sell them?
 
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Philpug

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Phil,
Can you expand a little on your thoughts on the ski. I hear they are great "tight tree" skis and would like to use them in the East at mtn's like Mad River Glen and Jay. These would be the wider of a two ski quiver.
For the hard snows (see: Ice) that is in the eastern trees, I owuld prefer something with a bit more dampening and would prefer the Foundations over the Alchemists.
 

fatbob

Making fresh tracks
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Nov 12, 2015
Posts
2,541
Can we get a Cliff Notes on the hierarchy of DPS constructions please and how they correspond to the old hybrid/pures.

Have to say despite the hype and loving Pure3 RPCs in really soft conditions at SIA trying Pure construction in Europe has always been fairly boneshaking and skittish in reset snow.
 

ScottB

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For the hard snows (see: Ice) that is in the eastern trees, I owuld prefer something with a bit more dampening and would prefer the Foundations over the Alchemists.
I can understand wanting a damp ski in icy conditions. When the mtn is iced over, I stay out of the trees and try to find some man made snow on the groomers. After some fresh snow, I go into the trees until the next freeze / thaw cycle hardens them up. I would use the DPS after fresh snow, and I would agree you can still find some ice in the trees, but you do your best to avoid it. The carbon construction appeals to me because of the weight reduction and making the skis easier to hop turn and flick around. Since I have never skied a DPS, are you implying the foundation (ie. fiberglass) construction is plenty flickable and the extra weight isn't a factor? The claim is the ski is very quick and turney, so the increased damping from the foundation out weighs the weight increase. I guess I am just surprised the foundation is preferred over the alchemist.

I sometimes use my 178cm SkiLogik Ullrs Charriots in the trees. They have similar dimensions to the Wailer, but no rocker and taper. They carve very quick turns, which is why I like them, but after a few runs, the swing weight of the tips and the weight in general wears me out. As long as the snow is soft, I prefer my SkiLogik Depth Hoars (191cm, 142mm underfoot, fully rockered) in the trees because I can pivot them and its a lot less work.
 

ScottB

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This may not be enough detail, but from what I have been reading:

Wailer original construction: ??? I am fuzzy about this, but I think it was carbon
Next Gen: definitely carbon, called Pure2 and at some point they made a carbon/fiberglass mix called hybred
Next Gen: carbon again and called it Pure3, not sure if they still made thehybred
Latest Gen: the carbon version is called Alchemist and the fiberglass version is called Foundation. The carbon version has some damping material added to the ski at key locations. Not sure of the details of the Foundation layup, other than it has fiberglass in it (maybe carbon too)

Final note: Wailer 112RP is not the same ski as Wailer 112RPC, which is a "charger" version and stiffer.

That is as much as I have deduced, and some of it maybe wrong. I expect Phil has it all straight (he's amazing)
 

BS Slarver

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Big Sky MT
@squill - how would you describe your skiing and what other skis would you find similar to the 106s in both the arch and foundation lines.
 

squill

Getting on the lift
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Mar 21, 2017
Posts
126
@squill - how would you describe your skiing and what other skis would you find similar to the 106s in both the arch and foundation lines.
(Sorry for the delay)

I guess I'm more of a finesse/technical skier — form follows function and the fall line. Coming from a telemark background I tend to have a narrower stance than say a racer and I've had instructor friends say that I need to widen it, but it works for me so I ignore their rule books.

Ski wise, notable skis were Nordica Enforcer 100/110 except they required more energy (I'm 6' 165lbs/ 26.5 120 Scarpa Freedom RS) overall to get them to do what I wanted, and I they only had the 191s in the tent, so a little on the larger side for me and my balding head. I liked the Fischer Ranger 108 as well, skied similar but tracked a little weird in crud and felt a little squirrely at speed. The Elan Ripstick 106 was good, but I could easily fold it if I pushed it to hard. Overall they're all great skis but the Wailer 105 synced with me on the first turn, and to be completely honest I was highly skeptical with the marketing talk in the tent, but for once it's actually true.
 

neonorchid

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@Philpug and others - I'm thinking the quiver can usean 80mm something frontside'ish ski capable in trees bumps and the typical NE ~ 6" of fresh snow day.

What can you tell me about the Cessiar85 Alchemist?

Also, does it ski short, i.e., which size would be appropraite @ my size 5'6.5" ~140 lbs, the 168cm or 178cm?

Have to say, based on demo's and quickly outgrowing my old 168cm Kastle BMX 88's, I'm very leery about going as short as 168cm in anything other then a full camber ski.

How would the Cessiar 85 Alchemist compare to a Kastle FX 85 which is available in 173cm, a lenght I think I'd perfer over 168 or 178?
 
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