2017-2018 LINE Sick Day 104

Jonathan Ellsworth reviews the Line Sick Day 104 for Blister Gear Review
Line Sick Day 104

Ski: 2017-2018 LINE Sick Day 104, 186 cm

Available Lengths: 172, 179, 186 cm

Blister’s Measured Tip-to-Tail Length: 185.5 cm

Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski: 1848 & 1903 grams

Stated Dimensions: 137-104-121 mm

Blister’s Measured Dimensions: 136.5-103.5-120.5

Stated Sidecut Radius: 19.3 meters

Tip & Tail Splay (ski decambered): 61 mm / 26 mm

Traditional Camber Underfoot: ~3 mm

Core: Aspen

Factory Recommended Mount Point: -10.15 cm from center; 82.6 cm from tail

[Note: Our review was conducted on the 17/18 Sick Day 104, which comes back unchanged for 18/19, except for the graphics.]

Intro: the New Sick Day Series

For the 17/18 season, Line has revamped their “Sick Day” series, and it will now include the Sick Day 88, 94, 104, and 114.

But a retooling of the Sick Day series isn’t the only change at LINE. We’re saying goodbye to the Supernatural 115 and the Supernatural 108 (which we love), as well as the Line Sick Day Tourist 102, which is one of our favorite touring skis.

We’ve been spending time on three of the new Sick Day models (the 94, 104, and 114), and will be offering our full reviews soon. And you can now also read our Flash Review of the Sick Day 104.

So what’s the story with these new Sick Day skis?

Line says about the retooled Sick Day series: “We took the LINE Sick Day Series, one of the more decorated lineups in skiing, and thought: how can we make this more fun? So we went back to the drawing board and retooled one of our favorite lines of skis. We realized we needed to make them arc better, make them surfier — all in all, we needed to make them…ahem, more funner.”

More funner. Got it.

And about the Sick Day 104 in particular, LINE says:

“This all-mountain, soft-snow beast features a more gradual rocker line and a tail that will break loose with ease. But don’t think of this as a slouch on hardpack, either. This everyday quiver of one offers the snappy, good times vibe that won’t overbear or clap out after half a season.”

So according to their copy, Line is positioning the 104 as an “everyday” one-ski quiver that is biased a bit toward soft-snow conditions.

Interestingly, they make no mention of backcountry skiing / ski touring. But the Sick Day series has always fallen squarely in the “50/50” category of skis, to be used both inbounds and out of bounds.

So the primary question we have of all of these Sick Day skis is whether they really are true “50/50” skis, or whether they are easier to recommend as dedicated inbounds skis or dedicated touring skis?

Weight

At a weight of 1850-1900 grams in the 186 cm length, we really can’t make the call just off of the weight — the skis are on the lighter side for inbounds use, and a touch on the heavier side for a dedicated touring ski. The 186 cm Line Tourist 102 came in at 1720 & 1747 grams per ski.

But in addition to reviewing the 186 cm Sick Day 104, we are also getting time on the 179 cm model, and are setting that ski up with a tech binding for use as a touring ski. And the 179 cm Sick Day 104 comes in at 1755 & 1792 grams per ski, which is only a touch heavier than the 186 Tourist 102.

Flex Pattern

Hand flexing both the 179 and the 186 Sick Day 104, I would describe their flex patterns like this:

186 cm Sick Day 104:

Tips: 5-6
Shovels: 7-8
Underfoot: 10
Behind the Heel piece: 9-8
Tails: 7-6.5

179 cm Sick Day 104:

Tips: 5-6
Shovels: 7-8
Underfoot: 10
Behind the Heel piece: 9-8
Tails: 8-7

I.e., they are very similar. If anything, the tails of the 186 might go slightly softer at the very end than the 179’s, but the difference is subtle.

So while the Sick Day 104 isn’t a noodle, it certainly doesn’t have a burly flex pattern, and won’t be confused off a hand flex with skis like the Faction Dictator 3.0 or the HEAD Kore 105.

Mount Point

While Line says that they have made the Sick Days more funner, they didn’t do so by giving the Sick Day a “funner,” more progressive mount point. At -10 cm behind center, we are in fully traditional, directional territory, unlike other Line skis like the Mordecai or the Sir Francis Bacon (where the “Eric’s Choice” mark is at – 2 cm). But don’t let the mount point freak you out; Line has proven that they can make some crazy fun, playful skis with more traditional mount points — e.g., the Line Pescado (-10 cm), which has been loved by every Blister reviewer who has spent time on it.

Shape / Rocker Profile

As you can see from our rocker pics, Line isn’t getting weird with the shape of this ski. There’s no heavy tip or tail taper (I mean, not that we care or anything, but YAY!!!), and the tail rocker on this ski is fairly subtle.

Similarly, the Line Tourist 102 was a really straight-forward design, it’s just that all of its straight-forward parts worked really really well together, making it a phenomenal ski. So we’ll see if Line can once again turn a straightforward design into something really good.

Bottom Line (For Now)

“More funner”? We’ll see. But the Sick Day 104 — like the other skis in the Sick Day series — doesn’t try to achieve its state of more-funner-ness by way of some goofy-ass design.

Stay tuned, and become a blister member to check out our Flash Review of the Sick Day 104 (and get a whole bunch of other perks).

NEXT: The Full Review

28 thoughts on “2017-2018 LINE Sick Day 104”

  1. After watching the promo video for the sick day series on line’s website, i’m sold on this skis for my style of skiing EXCEPT being able to use it more like a bacon (buttering, hokie 180s and 360s off side jumps). In that video, however, some of the riders appeared to be riding the sick day more center mounted than -10 cm. Any intel on how this ski would ride at maybe -5cm from center to allow some goofiness on the trail and slackcountry? I imagine there would be hardly any ski in contact with now in front of the bindings because of the generous looking rocker.

    Thanks!

  2. I am trying to find a more versatile ski for the PNW. I have some super wide powder skis for the deep days, but they kinda suck when the cascade cement gets tracked out and choppy. How would these skis do for a heavier guy (245lbs) for a fresh snow resort ski? I mostly ride at Stevens Pass in WA. The snow has a little more moisture content, and after the first hour, the pow gets pretty tracked out and compacted. The trees there are pretty tightly spaced together, so I would prefer something on the shorter side, but at my weight would the 179s be too noodley? Or any other recommendations for a 100-105mm wide versatile, but leaning towards shallow to medium pow days ski?

    • Hi, James – at 6’1″, 245, I think you’d overpower the 186 cm model of this ski in tracked-up heavier snow, and you would almost certainly overpower the 179 model. We really like this ski, but it shines as either a (1) 50/50 ski where you’d really want to save on weight, (2) dedicated touring ski where you’d also want to save on weight (3) fun, poppy ski for playing and jumping — not blasting through heavy chop (and not at your size).

      So go heavier. If you really want to keep things shorter, the 181 cm J Skis Masterblaster checks off a lot of your boxes. My second choice at this width would be the 188 cm Moment PB&J – don’t sweat the length, it’s got a ton of tip & tail rocker. It’s just a bit lighter than the Masterblaster, so pick your weight.

      But you might also check out the 186 cm ON3P Kartel 108, or the 184 cm 4FRNT Devastator – fairly heavy ski, tons of tip and tail rocker makes it easy to pivot in tight spaces.

      • I’m actually in a very similar position to James. I’m surprised you recommended the J Skis Masterblaster instead of The Metal – can you share some background? I’m 6’3″, 190lbs, also ski in the Cascades, and ride on ~5 year old Moment PB&J. I was looking for something a bit wider, a bit more directional, and figured the Metal would be perfect. But, both you and J Lev recommended the Masterblaster. What gives? :-)

        • Afarmer! how do you like the PB&J? I am considering that, along with the 4frnt devastator (super heavy), or the Bibby Pro (much wider) , I know those are all kinda different skis, but I am thinking I would still rather bias my next ski for new snow, then anything else..

          What else have you ridden on our heavy snow out here? Stevens Pass is my main mountain, and by 11am, light snow gets pretty heavy and super tracked out on a sunny day on the back side of that mountain…

          What else out there is great in the cascade concrete?

          • James, sorry I missed your reply.
            I do enjoy my PB&J, but I find them difficult to swing around. That’s probably due to my poor form :-) I was skiing on my backcountry setup inbounds one day, and really enjoyed it. I think I just really like the more directional, lighter weight ski.
            At this point, I’m tossing around the Atomic Backland 109 and the Salomon QST 106 as my new setup. They both get really good reviews from everyone I talk to, they both seem very versatile, and good in powder. The write-ups on these skis in Blister Winter Guide have been helpful, to be honest.

    • Again A Similar situation to JAMES (even the same mountains) though I am looking to get into touring 50/50 ski for next year. I’m 6’2″ & ~215lbs, a0nd my current ski is the enforcer 93 (which I love, except when things get bumpy). Looking to pick between the 18/19 Sick Day 104s or the 18/19 QST 106. is there anything that should sway me one way or the other?

    • James, my opinion for your size and location is that you definitely want something with some metal in it. Personally I run the enforcer 93s (185cm), but the 100s are also supposed to be great. You definitely give up some agility (especially in medium to large bumps) but, you can plow through basically anything else.

  3. Have you guys had a chance to try the 4FRNT MSP yet? It may be a little more narrow, but seems like it may be what I am looking for as well…

  4. Any idea how these compare to the Atomic Backland FR 102 and 109? I’m looking for a playful directional ski for east coast tree skiing and backcountry use – both the Sick Day and the Backland seem like they could fit the bill

  5. I have now spent a week in Obergurgl on these skis. Skiing mainly off pist in variable conditions some really fast gs slope skiing and some moguls. And I am super pleased with tjena skis. Very versatile (very) and really dependable. Easy to skid around in short turns and a very solid carver in medium to long turns. Surprisingly stable and shines in big turns at pretty high speed. Still very quick and agile. Maybe not the last Word on really hard/ice slopes but not to shabby either. Very nice ski that completely crush my former K2 Pinnacle 105. (In just about everything except slalom like carved turns in good conditions) Thumbs up!

  6. Moved away from skiing a big mountain resort environment every day (Big Sky) to a more 50/50 type of ski plan in the future. (Helena, MT) I’ve been on 182 Rossi E100’s for a couple years as my every day ski, and love them, despite limitations in deep snow and crusty variable pow. 6′, 230+ lbs (right now)

    Looking for a ski to put Shifts on for next season. Would the SD 186 be a good option? Or should I look for something a little burlier? I’m honestly not too concerned about weight going up, as I don’t do a lot of looong approaches. I demo’d the SD Tourists at Bridger Bowl on a soft chop type of day, and found them too noodly for me. I also found that I could easily overpower the original 188cm Soul 7 in roughly 6 inches of pow on a firm base on blue groomers. (Haven’t skied the HD)

    • Even though I find the Sick Days fairly damp and stable I suspect that a heavier/stronger skier could perhaps overpower them. (My weight is just below 80 kilos). To me the Nordica enforcer 100 is close to the Sick Day in overall performance and “feel” but the Sick days are a bit more “Lively and poppy” (and a fair bit lighter) while the enforcer may be a bit more damp and stable.

  7. Nice to read this full review :-). Thanks!

    But did I miss something? Not a word about pow? (I know we’re in April :-D)

    Jonathan if you read this, can you give your opinion on how they behave in pow against the Sakana?

  8. Thanks for great reviews! I just spent 3 days on these last week -186 version. Me= 155#, 6’1, advanced to expert. At +2 the turn initiation was noticeably easier, but I really liked these skis best at +1, especially in the morning refrozen spring conditions at Crested Butte. They like to charge and were really easy to throw around in technical terrain. I liked being able to break the tail free, but in hard snow they felt a bit skittery. I found the vibration of these to be a bit jarring at times and I had to keep on top of them as they could deflect when driving into hard conditions. For me these didn’t dampen anything in the terrain. They felt at home driving off the tips, but I found they liked a lighter touch with more agility rather than full charge mode. As soon as things softened up a little they were much more comfortable. I’d say this is a great ski for fair to good conditions, but not bad conditions. I was looking to replace my aging Nordica Hell and Backs with these, but in the end I’m still looking.

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