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To Knee or not to Knee

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Johnny-come-lately to the encyclopaedic amount of entries/info/opinions on the Knee binding.  No conflicts of interest here - but an interest in new products that could be better than what's historically been available.  It would be great to to see/hear independent, detailed, for-the-record reviews from top skiers who have used the product at levels requiring extreme performance for extended periods of time.  For example, guys like Chris Davenport and Daron Rahlves in places like Haines and La Grave.  If they're willing to put their reputations and well-being on the line to really run the product through the traps and then be able to say that it is actually bomber under pressure - super secure toe and heel, excellent transfer of energy to the ski and extremely well-made and reliable when needed most - no fall zones under dicey conditions after days of abuse in the back country - AND with the added benefit of some potential knee injury mitigation, that would be a big deal.  Everyone knows about the negative bias towards early adopters - who wore a bike helmet growing up?  But when TdF riders started showing up in early edition Giro and Uvex helmets - and periodically avoided (worse) injury in severe circumstances, the bias and the trend changed, for good reason.  Most people are incapable of judging the at-the-limit benefits and detriments of the product.  Which is why it is often reasonable for consumers to rely on those at the very top of their game to endorse products that the rest of us can take comfort in knowing we are very unlikely to push to similar limits, but in the off chance we did, we'd probably be ok. History on this site would suggest that there is little to be gained from more bickering about the ins and outs of myriad specifications and other criteria.  If we gave a pair of racing skis to Ted or Bode and then made the slightest adjustment to the bindings between runs without telling them, they would detect it in an instant and have an opinion about it under the harshest of conditions. So perhaps this discussion should be "taken outside" - no more dueling engineers, partisans and good skiers but instead, professionals at the absolute top of their game (no offense to lifers, ski bums and PSIAers but this means currently or recently competing adult free skiers and world cuppers). 

post #2 of 6

Well, i don't know if the Knee binding is going to end up skiing's equivalent of the Tucker automobile and don't get me wrong, i'm all for advancing the saftey factor, however the way i see it, they don't need to be "bomber" for their intended purpose and target market. They're no more intended for Vonn to use on the Lauberhorn as a Marker Squire or Dynafit. I'm under the impression, mechanically, they haven't proven "not" to work as well as any other weekend warrior binder out there. Although i have to say i'm leery of the Knee binding toe piece up ward release capability vs. something like a Tyrollia or Look. I knew a guy from my high school who got tossed on a mogul run landing on tails resulting in a knee cap splitting in half. A upward releasing toe piece like what Look introduced with their "XM" of the early nineteen eighties and several years prior to that guys life changing injury or as i believe Spadman's had a decade before that, probably would've prevented it. Really, i'm thinking i'd be more impressed seeing lots of rental fleets/Knee bindings than a few hard core top of their game pro's going big on them. But that's just my antiquated opinion. Seriously, if you guys think i should put Knee bindings on this years new skis instead of the Look Pivots i plan on getting please let me know, after all the purchase price isn't that different to be a factor for me one way or the other.

 

 

 

post #3 of 6

there was a long, long discussion of this not too far back, with a big split among Bears.  FWIW, I don't think the knee binding has an upward realeasing toe, instead it is a true lateral heal release (to one side) that is suppose to make it safer.  You could ask the chairman to clarify.

post #4 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by neonorchid View Post

Well, i don't know if the Knee binding is going to end up skiing's equivalent of the Tucker automobile and don't get me wrong, i'm all for advancing the saftey factor, however the way i see it, they don't need to be "bomber" for their intended purpose and target market. They're no more intended for Vonn to use on the Lauberhorn as a Marker Squire or Dynafit. I'm under the impression, mechanically, they haven't proven "not" to work as well as any other weekend warrior binder out there. Although i have to say i'm leery of the Knee binding toe piece up ward release capability vs. something like a Tyrollia or Look. I knew a guy from my high school who got tossed on a mogul run landing on tails resulting in a knee cap splitting in half. A upward releasing toe piece like what Look introduced with their "XM" of the early nineteen eighties and several years prior to that guys life changing injury or as i believe Spadman's had a decade before that, probably would've prevented it. Really, i'm thinking i'd be more impressed seeing lots of rental fleets/Knee bindings than a few hard core top of their game pro's going big on them. But that's just my antiquated opinion. Seriously, if you guys think i should put Knee bindings on this years new skis instead of the Look Pivots i plan on getting please let me know, after all the purchase price isn't that different to be a factor for me one way or the other.

 

 

 


Funny you mention the Spademan and specifically the Look XM, they are two bindings i have in my garage right now in my binding collection and both defunct designs (but not the XM heel, that is current).

 

The OP, mentions two skiers that I do know and one that I interact with regularly. Daron WAS just risking everything on a prototype binding this past season, the Atomic Tracker, Salomon/Atomic's competitor to the Marker Duke and had interaction with the manufacturer on design. 

 

As far as what YOU should be putting on your skis, the "Big 4" all have designs that date back into the 70's/80's with their top of the line designs. IMHO, that in confidence for me and if there is one word that encompasses the word "safety" in a binding it IS confidence. I want the binding to release when I need it to release and hold me in when I need it to hold me in, there cannot be any doubt for me. While I might not have the aggressiveness of some of the people here let alone Daron and Davenport, these peoples also don't have to pay my bills if I get hurt. This doesn't sound like this is your first season on snow, you have to go with what you feel you have the most confidence in. FWIW, I do also like your reference to the Tucker and I don't think you are too far off. 

 

post #5 of 6

Bought these bindings and had them put on a new pair of Kendos.  I'm dying to try the whole setup since I haven't been on skis since the day I was injured (Jan 27th).

 

I'm neither optimistic or pessimistic about how these will perform.  There is so little info from skiers in the field on them that it's impossible to get an impression.  I take a small comfort that a couple of magazines claim to have tried them and felt they performed as a typical binding should...but very small. 

 

During this recovery season I won't be putting these through even basic bumps and trees anytime soon unless I just snap right back to form.  In any case I doubt a skier of my caliber will find whatever the limits are on these things.  If I never injure my knee again I will be one satisfied customer.

 

With Kneebindings being sold in so many more stores this year you would think a picture will start to form and the desired info will pour in over the next couple of seasons.  The manufacturers must be on the edge of their seats.

post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by ed_d View Post

Bought these bindings and had them put on a new pair of Kendos.  I'm dying to try the whole setup since I haven't been on skis since the day I was injured (Jan 27th).

 

I'm neither optimistic or pessimistic about how these will perform.  There is so little info from skiers in the field on them that it's impossible to get an impression.  I take a small comfort that a couple of magazines claim to have tried them and felt they performed as a typical binding should...but very small. 

 

During this recovery season I won't be putting these through even basic bumps and trees anytime soon unless I just snap right back to form.  In any case I doubt a skier of my caliber will find whatever the limits are on these things.  If I never injure my knee again I will be one satisfied customer.

 

With Kneebindings being sold in so many more stores this year you would think a picture will start to form and the desired info will pour in over the next couple of seasons.  The manufacturers must be on the edge of their seats.



Good luck  wink.gif

 

 

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