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Buying Jester or Dukes - few questions

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

Hi all


I am choosing a binding for my new Line MP's Opus ski.  Trying to decide between Marker Jesters and Dukes.  I already have Jesters on my other skis and I normally ski in places with lift access.  However, next season I am thinking about trying to for short skinning trips - hence I am considering the Dukes.  I have a couple of questions:


  1. I understand that Dukes stand a couple of cm higher than normal alpine downhill binding.  Would Dukes feel much different from alpine binding such as Jesters when skiing downhill?  Line Opus is a wide ski, will the higher position be noticeable?
  2. What break side would be better for a 118mm ski -- 110mm or 130mm?


Thanks in advance for replies!

post #2 of 7

It falls under the category..."If you have to ask..." If you have to ask, you don't need the Duke. It sounds like you will using the features of the Duke less then 10% of the time. If that is the case, why do you want to be skiing around with the extra weight the other 90%? I would be less worried about the extra stand height than the extra weight. I would suggest the 110 brake on either way you will choose.

post #3 of 7

Dynafits are for people who tour. Dukes are for people who think they want to tour (and people who tour a little or just ski--dare I say it--SIDECOUNTRY) . Suggestion--before you buy Dukes buy skins,beacon, shovel, and probe and figure out whom you might tour with.  If you don't want to do that you probably should listen to Philpug.

post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks Philpug and oldgoat.


About the extra weight of Dukes -- as we compare them to an alpine binding rather than another touring bindings, would not the weight only matter when carrying the skis from the car to the first lift? smile.gif  I.e. the extra weight would not be noticeable when skiing downhill, would it?


Considering that the price difference of between Jesters and Dukes is not that huge, what would be the real downside of acquiring Dukes?  My concern was the extra height of the binding.

post #5 of 7

As has been noted, the downside includes weight and stand height. There are conditions where the extra weight is noticeable.  I'd also note additional moving (or potentially moving) parts, and more impact on the skis' flex. And yeah - price differential. 


As others have noted, unless you are committed to avy training and the acquisition of all routine related gear - there is not much point in the Dukes. 


I happen to be someone who thinks there is a place in the world for bindings like Dukes, Guardians, etc. I have more than a couple such bindings. But they are definitely a quiver niche thing. Think about how committed you are to the training and equipment acquisition that should precede throwing skins on skis... If you are really stoked about the whole picture, Dukes likely make sense. If you are not sure, I'd suggest skipping them.

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks spindrift.


I am not an experienced sidecountry skier, but my plan was to explore more of the mountain in the coming season (I ski at Mt Ruapehu, New Zealand), which may require some short hikes (not longer than 45 mins).  Still, mostly I would ski the lift-accessible terrain.  I thought that Dukes may ease the walking when required, but had reservations about the downhill skiing performance (i.e. the extra height).


From the opinions here it appears that Dukes may be more than I need.  Then what do people do when they want to hike without touring binding - just carry the skis over the shoulder?   


Also, do everyone agree that 110mm break is preferable to 132mm break on a 118mm ski?

post #7 of 7

The complaint I have heard about dukes besides weight, is that they create a flat spot in the ski which changes how a ski performs. You would only notice this if you had skied the ski without the Dukes before buying dukes. I hear the new Tyrolea (don't remember the model name) doesn't change the ski's performance, performs well, and is lighter and less expensive. As far as the brakes go I would listen to Phil. The other option for well traveled paths to sidecountry would be to just shoulder them or strap em to your backpack. Be carefull out there!

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