Moderators note: The below post and first six replies were moved from another thread:
Hi all, I wanted to share my rationale for finally purchasing a pair of Kneebindings as I have not seen a similar post yet and it remains difficult to assess the situation given the legal fights. I purchased a set of Kneebindings in 2013 and skied on them this past season. I experienced no problems, however, also didn't have any falls that would have tested their release. I had no pre-releases also. I am early 40s and an intermediate skier so I am not pushing them to the limits that more experienced skiers might. Before the purchase I thought long and hard and did as much research as possible, coming close in 2011 and 2012 and finally taking the plunge to purchase the bindings in 2013.
The main point that got me over the line was that I found who I believe to be a well respected US orthopedic surgeon who has served as a physician on the US Ski team and is an examiner for the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery who recommended I go ahead with the purchase. I emailed the surgeon directly in Dec 2012 outlining my situation and indecision and asked for his opinion. The following is his exact and complete reply "Yes, I am on KB's this season and so far, so good. My concern was whether they had a tendency to pre-release, and although the season is too early for me to fairly judge, I suspect there won't be a problem. I am very excited about the product as I believe it truly addresses the Phantom Foot etiology for ski-fall ACL tears. I highly encourage you to go ahead with the purchase. There are some minor performance gains apparently (wider boot contact/floating ski fixation), but clearly the real reason to use them is obvious.I have zero financial agreements or kickbacks with KB, btw. Have a great & healthy ski season,". So unless this surgeon is a fraud, which I have no reason to believe he is, that seems a pretty good endorsement to at least give them a try which I did. FYI I have not yet followed up with him to hear if his view has changed or what is experience was through the season, but I will do. While the surgeon didn't ask for my exchange to be confidential I would prefer not to disclose his name without his permission, so please do not ask me.
I should also share my interaction with the Kneebindings company itself which wasn't totally positive. JSM told me they would be delivered to a ski shop that would install them for me (Whistler), but when I called them they said they would not do so and that they had told Kneebindings this many times. Eventually JSM found a shop who would install them. JSM also asked me to send him a photo of my skis so he could confirm that the bindings could be fitted to those skis. I did this for both my wife and my skis. He confirmed they would be OK, however, upon reaching the shop with my skis the shop advised that both skis could not be fitted with the Kneebindings, so I had to buy new skis. From this perspective I did have some concerns about the company. However, in the end I decided that new companies often 'bend the truth' a little as they get started, so took the view that the service wasn't so concerning as not to proceed.
Given Howell's comments this year still on the quality of the bindings and failing TVU and ISO standards I remain not fully sure I have made the right decision hence continue to research. It is very difficult, almost impossible, to work out fact from fiction.