2020-2021 Armada Edollo

Durability

Just like the two other Armada skis I’ve ridden (the AR7 and the THall), the Al Dente’s edges have proven to be very strong. After a week of riding, I couldn’t find a single edge crack on the ski, and that’s very unusual given my experience with other skis. I am harder on my equipment than anyone I’ve ever met in my twelve years as a park skier; I’m used to noticing a couple of edge cracks after only 2 or 3 days on a ski, and the number of cracks usually increases steadily with use until the edge pulls out.

Not so on the Al Dente, and it doesn’t even incorporate Armada’s thickest edge; the Al Dente is built with a 2.2mm edge, where the AR7 and THall have 2.5 mm edges. I’ll certainly keep an eye on the Al Dente’s edges as I put more time on them, but so far, I’m impressed with how well they’ve held up.

While the Al Dente’s edge has remained rock solid, the brunt of rail impacts was apparently transferred to another area of the ski’s construction that wasn’t as resilient. Throughout the testing period, I designated one ski as my left ski and the other my right ski, so the same two edges always took the brunt of the rail damage. About four days in, ~12” of the topsheet began to pull away from the sidewall/core on one side of each ski, directly underfoot. However, I continued to use the skis, and this didn’t seem to affect their performance at all. So for the moment, I’ll say that this damage is really only cosmetic, and I will update this review if anything changes.

Scott Nelson reviews the Armada Al Dente, Blister Gear Review.
Damage to the Al Dente’s sidewall/topsheet (bottom) & opposite, unaffected side (top).

Bottom Line

The Al Dente is the widest, softest park ski I’ve ever ridden, placing it in a class of its own as the most jib-oriented ski I know of.

It can feel fairly cumbersome in the air and doesn’t provide much stability when landing bigger jumps, so I don’t recommend it if you’re looking for a serious, stiff comp ski.

But if you want a super-playful, very fun jib ski that can take on some mellow jumps, the Al Dente is a great choice.

10 comments on “2020-2021 Armada Edollo”

  1. Hey, I bought the Armada Al Dente, mostly to learn how to butter.

    I’m 5’9″, and I got the 168 cm. I was reading about buttering recently, and someone who was 5’8″ said he uses 178 cm for buttering, and wouldn’t go any shorter.

    Should I exchange these 168s for some 178s? Or will it not matter too much?

  2. Personally, I would recommend the 178cm over the 168cm for someone your height, particularly considering how much tip rocker the Al Dente has (and how much shorter it will feel as a result). As for how a different length would affect the ski’s ability to butter, I don’t have a concrete answer. My intuition says that longer skis will be harder to initiate butters, although the longer ski might excel in that it’s effectively a larger lever with which to apply pressure on the tips when buttering.

  3. I am 6’4″165lbs and am currently riding 178 J skis and I am looking at these simply because I want a softer and wider ski. Would you recommend getting the 178’s or 188’s, I feel like the 188’s will be pretty heavy in the air, that is my only worry.

    • Ben,
      The 188 may feel a bit bulky at first, but I think the pros of a longer version of this ski will outweigh the cons. While the extra 10cm may add a bit of additional swing weight, the Al Dente’s tip rocker causes it to ski like a significantly shorter ski than its actual length. At 6’4″ I think the extra 10cm will feel more solid under your feet and ski like a length that’s more appropriate and enjoyable for someone of your height. I enjoyed the 178 length (I’m 5’9″ 150 lbs) but would have preferred something in the 182-184cm range. I think the 178 might just feel a bit short for you.

  4. How do these skis fare as all-mountain skis in bowls and steeps? I spend quite a bit of time in the park (jumps mainly), but like hitting back bowls and steeps in CO equally (like lake chutes or highland bowl). I’m trying to decide between these and the Bacons. I’m an advanced-intermediate/expert skiier, and am a bit heavier (210lb) by the way. Thanks for your insights.

  5. I’m not sure what skis to get I’ve been considering the Al dente and the salmon nfx lab. Any Idea on what I should get. I am 5’11 160 any size ideas?

  6. Will,
    The Al Dente and Salomon NFX Lab excel in fairly divergent ways. The NFX Lab is significantly stiffer and doesn’t feature any rocker and will outperform the Al Dente on big jumps. With that said, it doesn’t touch the Al Dente with a ten foot pole in terms of playfulness as a jib ski. I’m 5’9 and skied the 178 Al Dente and found it to ski slightly short, but it may work as a size for you depending on what kind of a skier you are. For the Salomon NFX lab, I’d probably recommend the 181cm if you like your skis fairly long or the 176 if you’re more comfortable at a shorter length.
    Hope that helps.

  7. Dale,
    I actually ended up putting a decent amount of time on the Al Dentes outside of the park this past season. They’re not the dampest all-mountain ski that you’d find – the tip rocker ends up making the ski feel a bit loose and unstable at high speeds outside of the park, as you may have guessed from this review. Still, they’re light and nimble in initiating turns. As far as park skis perform outside of the park, the Al Dente isn’t a bad choice, to be honest.

  8. Hello,
    I would like to buy new Armada Edollo but I can’t decide what size to buy and I need your help. I am 171cm and I weigh 78kg. I am Intermidiate level skier but I am going to progress my skiing ability. I want those skis for all mountin freestyle riding. Some people recommended to pick 178cm because of its nose rocker and they say that it skis shorter. What size would you recommend?
    Thank you =)

Leave a Comment