2019-2020 Blizzard Zero G 105

Ski: 2019-2020 Blizzard Zero G 105, 188 cm

Available Lengths: 164, 172, 180, 188 cm

Blister’s Measured Tip-to-Tail Length: 185.2 cm

Stated Weight per Ski: 1650 grams (± 50 grams)

Blister’s Measured Weight per Ski: 1606 & 1641 grams

Stated Dimensions: 134-105-120 mm

Blister’s Measured Dimensions: 133.3-104.3-119.2 mm

Stated Sidecut Radius (188 cm): 24 meters

Measured Tip & Tail Splay (ski decambered): 71 mm / 25 mm

Measured Traditional Camber Underfoot: ~3 mm

Core: Paulownia + Carbon Fiber Laminate

Factory Recommended Mount Point: -9.2 cm from center; 83.4 cm from tail

Blister reviews the Blizzard Zero G 105
Blizzard Zero G 105
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Review Navigation:  Specs //  First Look //  Bottom Line //  Rocker Pics

Intro

We are pretty big fans of Blizzard’s current Zero G touring skis. The Zero G 108 is a surprisingly strong and stable ski that could be pushed hard in the backcountry, and the Zero G 95 is (especially when it was introduced a few seasons ago) is a shockingly light ski that still performs quite well on the way down.

But for 19/20, Blizzard is overhauling their Zero G skis, and the 19/20 skis use a new construction technique, new shapes, new sidecuts, and new rocker profiles. The new line will consist of the redesigned Zero G 85 and Zero G 95, and then the brand-new Zero G 105 will be the widest ski in the line.

So just how much has Blizzard moved away from the previous designs? Let’s take a look at the new Zero G 105 to start to answer that question.

Construction — “Carbon Drive 2.0”

The first generation Zero G skis were made with Blizzard’s first iteration of their “Carbon Drive,” which is essentially a layer of unidirectional carbon fiber that extends from tip to tail. The current Zero G skis’ carbon layer extends from edge to edge in a large section of the tips and tails, and then narrows in the middle of the ski.

For the new 19/20 Zero G skis, Blizzard tweaked this design, and they’re calling it “Carbon Drive 2.0.” The new carbon layer doesn’t span edge to edge across as much of the tips and tails, which is designed to make the skis a bit more playful and easy to release in fresh snow. Blizzard also added edge-to-edge, bi-directional carbon plates under the bindings to help with binding retention and power transfer underfoot.

Blister reviews the Blizzard Zero G 105
19/20 Blizzard Carbon Drive 2.0 Construction

Shape / Rocker Profile

The current Zero G 108 uses the same exact mold as the Blizzard Cochise. The result was a ski with a pretty mellow amount of tip and tail taper, and pretty deep, but subtle rocker lines (the tips and tails didn’t splay out / rise up much till the end of the ski).

The new Zero G 105’s rocker profile looks pretty similar to that of the current Zero G 108, but there are a few notable differences. First, the Zero G 105 has shallower tip and tail rocker lines. But the Zero G 105 also has more tip and tail splay. Given that the Zero G 108 wasn’t amazing in deep snow compared to similar skis, we’re very curious to see if the new Zero G 105 will perform better in those conditions.

As for shape, the new Zero G 105 isn’t a major departure from the Zero G 108, with the Zero G 105 having a tiny bit less tip taper, and maybe slightly more taper in the tails.

Flex Pattern

Here’s how we’d characterize the flex pattern of the Zero G 105:

Tips: 7-7.5
Shovels: 7.5-8.5
In Front of Toe Piece: 9-9.5
Underfoot: 9.5
Behind the Heel Piece: 9.5-8.5
Tails: 7.5-6.5

This is a pretty strong touring ski. While the ends of its tips and tails are fairly easy to bend, its flex ramps up quickly. And it’s worth noting that the softer “6.5” section of the tail only reflects the last ~5 cm of the ski.

Compared to the Volkl BMT 109, the BMT 109 is a touch softer at the very tip, but stiffens up quicker in shovel. The BMT 109’s tail is a tiny bit stiffer, and the BMT 109’s flex ramps up a bit quicker as you move from the tips or tails to the middle of the ski.

Dimensions / Sidecut Radius

The current 185 cm Zero G 108 has stated dimensions of 136-108-122 mm and a stated sidecut radius of 27 meters.

The new 188 cm Zero G 105 has stated dimensions of 134-105-120 mm and a stated sidecut radius of 24 meters.

So there aren’t any huge changes here, but given that the current Zero G 108’s sidecut fell on the longer end of the spectrum, we’ll be keeping in mind the new Zero G 105’s shorter radius during our testing.

Weight

One of the biggest differences between the current Zero G 108 and new Zero G 105 is weight. The 188 cm Zero G 105 is coming in roughly 100 grams lighter per ski compared to the 185 cm Zero G 108. That’s a noteworthy difference, especially given that the Zero G 108 now falls a bit on the heavier side compared to other modern touring skis.

The Zero G 105 still isn’t the absolute lightest ski in its class, but its updated construction seems to have narrowed the gap between it and skis like the Black Diamond Helio 105 Carbon, K2 Wayback 106, and G3 FINDr 102 (especially when you consider the size differences between the skis).

For reference, here are a number of our measured weights (per ski in grams) for some notable skis. And as always, pay close attention to the length differences to keep things more apples-to-apples.

1446 & 1447 Line Vision 98, 179 cm (19/20)
1476 & 1490 K2 Wayback 106, 179 cm (18/19–19/20)
1477 & 1482 G3 FINDr 102, 184 cm (17/18–18/19)
1547 & 1551 Black Diamond Helio 105 Carbon, 185 cm (17/18)
1562 & 1566 Scott Superguide 105, 183 cm (17/18–18/19)
1605 & 1630 Line Vision 108, 183 cm (19/20)
1606 & 1641 Blizzard Zero G 105, 188 cm (19/20)
1642 & 1651 Renoun Citadel 106, 185 cm, (18/19)
1706 & 1715 Volkl BMT 109, 186 cm (17/18–19/20)
1720 & 1747 Line Sick Day Tourist 102, 186 cm (16/17)
1733 & 1735 Blizzard Zero G 108, 185 cm (17/18–18/19)
1745 & 1747 4FRNT Raven, 184 cm (16/17–18/19)
1755 & 1792 Line Sick Day 104, 179 cm (17/18,–19/20)
1814 & 1845 Elan Ripstick 106, 181 cm (17/18–19/20)
1825 & 1904 Black Crows Corvus Freebird, 183.3 cm (17/18–19/20)
1843 & 1847 Head Kore 105, 189 cm (17/18)
1848 & 1903 Line Sick Day 104, 186 cm (17/18–19/20)
1849 & 1922 Elan Ripstick 106, 188 cm (17/18–19/20)
1898 & 1893 Armada Tracer 108, 180 cm (18/19)
1913 & 1943 Sego Condor Ti, 187 cm (18/19)
1923 & 1956 DPS Alchemist Wailer 106, 189 cm (17/18–18/19)
1941 & 1965 Fischer Ranger 108 Ti, 182 cm (17/18–18/19)
1950 & 1977 Blizzard Rustler 10, 188 cm (17/18–18/19)
1970 & 1979 Atomic Backland FR 109, 189 cm (17/18)
1980 & 2016 Liberty Origin 106, 187 cm (17/18–18/19)
1996 & 2012 Dynastar Legend X106, 188 cm (17/18–19/20)
2022 & 2047 Faction Dictator 3.0, 186 cm (17/18–18/19)
2026 & 2056 Black Diamond Boundary Pro 107, 184 cm (17/18–19/20)
2030 & 2039 Rossignol Soul 7 HD, 188 cm (17/18–19/20)
2036 & 2064 Salomon QST 106, 188 cm (18/19)

Some Questions / Things We’re Curious about

(1) The current Zero G 108 is one of the better touring skis we’ve used when it comes to staying composed at high speeds and in variable snow. So will the new Zero G 105, with its lower weight and new shape, be similarly stable?

(2) Deep powder was one area where the Zero G 108 didn’t perform as well as many of the other skis in its class, so will the new Zero G 105 be an improvement?

(3) Given Blizzard’s decision to decrease the amount of carbon in the tips and tails of the Zero G 105, will it feel notably easier to slarve / release from a turn?

(4) Will we notice the Zero G 105’s tighter sidecut radius compared to the current Zero G 108?

Bottom Line (For Now)

While Blizzard hasn’t seemingly strayed too far from their Zero G 108, the new Zero G 105 looks like it could bring some (or all?) of the Zero G 108’s performance in a lighter, and potentially more forgiving package. We’ll be getting the ski on snow soon, so stay tuned for updates.

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Rocker Pics:

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Tip Profile
Tail Profile
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9 comments on “2019-2020 Blizzard Zero G 105”

  1. I’ve been a huge fan of the ZG 108. My favorite all around touring ski ever. You can count on it in all conditions from deep snow to steep, firm jump turns. If I’m not sure what type of snow I’ll be getting, it’s the ski I reach for. Not the floatiest ski out there, but more than adequate in pow if you ask me. Its strong suit is how well it handles variable snow for its weight (wind crusts, wind board, sloppy mank, etc). For me this is what distinguishes a great touring ski from a mediocre one – performance in variable snow at a weight that you can tour on all day, multiple days in a row.

    I’m a tiny bit disappointed about the smaller sidecut radius. I think the long radius is one thing that makes it ski so well in variable snow. This is a personal preference, but I think most touring skis out there have too much sidecut. Sidecut is your enemy in variable snow and in steep, firm snow if you ask me. We’re not carving trenches on groomers when touring so why do we need sidecut? But if this ski is easier to release and slide around, maybe this won’t matter.

    I also prefer a more traditional mount to my skis, so I’m also a little wary of the new mount point. But that’s more of a personal style thing. -9 cm is still pretty traditional.

    All of that being said Blizzard makes great skis and I’m optimistic this thing will rip. When my current ZG 108s die they will need a replacement and this will be a strong contender.

  2. They need a wider zero G ski. I really like my 95s but would be interested in a powder took maybe based on the rustler 11 mold.

  3. This will be my 3rd season on the current Zero G 108 and love it for many of the reasons stated by Michael above. This ski is the most predictable ski I’ve used in variable backcountry conditions since my 2nd gen Coombacks, which while considered light at the time, would be a resort weight ski now. I bought the current Zero G as a 50/50 ski for travel to resorts with ample side country, like Whistler, Targhee and Whitewater, and paired with a wider ski (Bodacious) for bigger days, they’ve been stellar, but they’ve become my first choice for all touring now.

    I chose them based in large part on Paul Forward’s review, and welcomed their extra mass for pounding thru tracked out resort powder while waiting for BC gates to open. To my style of skiing, they are a totally capable on piste ski, and I wouldn’t give any of that up for better powder performance! Same goes for the BC. They’re stable, damp and unflappable in marginal conditions or crappy/dicey, tired legged, low altitude ski outs to the car where a light pingy ski can be scary! And they ski powder just fine as does any decent ski. Maybe the tips don’t rise as aggressively, but they ski IN the pow, not ON it which makes boot top days feel deeper.

    As far as the new model goes, I hope they haven’t changed what makes this ski so great, just to slightly improve its float. Like Michael mentioned above, the shorter side cut radius is of concern. I do like the 180 length option for easier kick turns. If it just improves upon the old model, I’m all in. Fingers crossed! Do you guys know if they are releasing the new models mid-season or Fall 2019?

  4. I love the Zero G 108 for all the reasons identified above. Total agreement. I will add that this ski works great in spring mashed potatoes in the resort. As a soft snow resort ski, I like it better than it’s heavier twin, Cochise. I do have shift bindings on it so it doesn’t lose any thing in the resort going fast downhill. I hope the new version don’t lose anything that makes it so good.

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