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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Backcountry, Telemark, and Cross Country › Request for Advice: NTN or 7tm Releasable Telemark Bindings?
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Request for Advice: NTN or 7tm Releasable Telemark Bindings?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

Hello all,

 

I'm a beginner telemarker, hoping to get some advice.  I have become a little worried about the possibility of injuring my knees, and would like to pick up a pair of bindings that will release in a fall.  I'm debating at the moment between NTN bindings, and 7tm Power bindings.

 

As I understand it, both are releasable, but the 7tm binding is actually DIN-certified while NTN is not.  On the other hand, I know NTN is a much newer technology.

 

Focusing just on safety rather than price (I really like my knees!), does anyone know how the two compare on releasability?  I've also heard some bad things about the power of the 7tm binding, would it work well for a resort-skiing newbie like myself?

 

Many thanks,

Fixx42

post #2 of 14

I've skied 7tms for years and just got NTN. I think the 7tm is probably a more reliable and adjustable release. On the 7tm you can adjust the release and the spring in the binding separately. On the NTN, how tight you clamp the binding dictates the release. 

 

As far as power goes, the change for me was like the first time I drove a car with power brakes- I had to learn not to stomp on it but use a light touch with the NTN.

 

Are they still making 7tms? If not, that might factor in your decision.

post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wayneski View Post
 

I've skied 7tms for years and just got NTN. I think the 7tm is probably a more reliable and adjustable release. On the 7tm you can adjust the release and the spring in the binding separately. On the NTN, how tight you clamp the binding dictates the release. 

 

As far as power goes, the change for me was like the first time I drove a car with power brakes- I had to learn not to stomp on it but use a light touch with the NTN.

 

Are they still making 7tms? If not, that might factor in your decision.

Thanks for the input Wayne.  I'm not sure if they're still in production, but I have found some for sale.

 

And from your power brake comparison, I take it you much prefer the power of the NTN's?  As a newbie, do you think that's a difference I would be able to appreciate?

post #4 of 14
The NTN provides a more solid feel, I believe. No experience on my part with the 7tms, just an observation from what I've heard users of both say. My telemark experience is from old 3-pin on skinny skis and using NTNs.
post #5 of 14
Speaking from experience, NTN. The 7tms don't ski anywhere near as well (your rear foot control is reason enough to go NTN, but the front foot is better too), and the 7tm brakes only deploy on release, and 7tms are really hard to put back together after a release.

But to address your safety concerns, my NTNs have always - always - released when they needed to.
post #6 of 14

Good point Bob- the brakes on 7tms only work when the binding releases from the ski. Once I had a ski come off (leash-less) the the ski went down the hill. It's also nice (with NTN) to be able to drop your skis on the ground and have the brakes hold them there. Although I haven't mastered the step in reliably.

post #7 of 14
7tm... Now there's a binding I truly dislike... How it skis, and for all the time wasted waiting for people fiddling around with it when we should have been skiing. Go NTN. Don't look back.smile.gif
post #8 of 14

I didn't find my 7tms "fiddly", but in the few days I've used NTN, I came out of the binding once (didn't get it clamped properly) and had it pop into tour mode two or three times while skiing.

post #9 of 14

I have put lots of miles over 7 or 8 years and 3 different sets of 7tm bindings. The 7tm, even the 7tm powers are a fairly neutral binding requiring more awareness of bending at the fore foot rather then just picking up the heel. I feel they ski a lot like the 3g Targas or early Rottefella Cobras. I got them because I make my living on my feet and If a solid release is available I will use it. I have not had any issues with the release, or lack of release. I love that when I'm teaching I can twist out and walk around. I've never had an issue getting the plate back on the ski, perhaps because I'm old enough to have had Alpine bindings with the brake mounted on the toe piece and learned you just have to slide the ski forward to retract the brake as you step back in. I do wear a leash on the heel throw to keep from releasing from the plate but the 7tm is about the only tele binding that I have never lost a ski by twisting out of the toe iron

 

The NTN is not a true DIN release. The release is more controllable then most tele bindings, but most tele bindings will release when over powered. The bigger problem to me is how stiff the binding/boot forefoot has to be to make the binding work. The consensus of skiers who I respect (including 3 current or former national D team members) is that NTN makes a great parallel and fake-a-mark turns, Tele, not so much. Because it's hard to bend the foot nearly all the skiers I see on them are standing on their tip toes rather then the ball of their foot when they do make tele turns.     

post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave W View Post

...The bigger problem to me is how stiff the binding/boot forefoot has to be to make the binding work. The consensus of skiers who I respect (including 3 current or former national D team members) is that NTN makes a great parallel and fake-a-mark turns, Tele, not so much. Because it's hard to bend the foot nearly all the skiers I see on them are standing on their tip toes rather then the ball of their foot when they do make tele turns.     

With all due respect, and from someone that has been skiing the NTN since it came out, ^that is wrong. In fact, it's really hard to fake-a-mark on NTN. IME it is not at all hard to bend the foot with a properly weighted rear foot and it offers rear foot control that is unexcelled.

The most valuable feedback will come from people that have skied on both. I gather that you haven't skied the NTN.
post #11 of 14

 Yes Bob; you are correct; I have not skied the NTN. However The OPs question was, 1st about the release of each binding. The 7tm is a true DIN release in twisting falls although lacking in an upward release. The NTN is an approximation of a din release; also without an upward component that many have found works well for them; others I have spoken to found that when they set the cartridges to release reliably for them the bindings ceased to be the active binding that attracted them in the first place.

 

2nd He was curious specifically about how 7tms ski and was it suitable for resort skiing. I have been teaching alpine over 30 years; and tele over 10 years. I know that I personally prefer a more neutral binding; others; apparently including you do not. As an instructor however I have found that alpine crossovers tend to develop solid skills more quickly when they start on less active bindings as it lets them feel how both feet work through the turns. I apologize to Fixx42 for not being more explicit on that point in my original post.

 

As far as knowing anything about how the NTN skis; this being the internet none of us really knows if any of us is qualified to answer any question. Perhaps I should not have passed along what I have been told by others. However, over the years I have met,and worked with, people who have spent more time on teles then most of us ever will that really know their stuff. I have asked people who I feel are qualified to have an opinion what they think because I really do want the NTN to work. As I stated it is their opinion that it isn't quite there yet for tele turns. I personally have only tried the boots (Crispi and Scarpa) and found that for me the flex wasn't what I felt it should have been(and that my duck feet don't fit). Admittedly that was in the 3'rd year of the NTN and some say both manufacturers have softened their bellows further since then. As a big part of my job is watching people ski, I do it a lot. I see a far higher percentage of the NTN skiers routinely skiing alpine then any other binding. I see a fair number who make pretty good turns. My CONJECTURE- not to be confused with fact- is that there are basically 2 classes of skier currently in NTNs. Experienced, strong Tele skiers looking for and knowing how to use their power. And Alpine crossovers who are happy to have some kind of release and strong enough alpine skills that, in part because of that power, never really learn how to tele. The one place I have seen a large population of strong Tele skiers on NTNs are at the World Cup Tele events. But I've skied on alpine race stock equipment and I'm not burly enough to get the most out of it all day, every day. And I really don't want to put beginner/intermediates on it.

post #12 of 14

This is my 4th season on NTN bindings. My first trip ever on NTN bindings ended in an ugly fall and injury (ankle) because the bindings didn't release. The power tube was set appropriately according to my weight and boot size. Since then i loosened the power tube as much as possible. I still haven't experienced my bindings releasing, resulting in me becoming a pussy on skis. I know someone who has had the bindings release once, though! This being said, I'm pretty light, and I think this can be some of the reason for the NTN bindings not releasing. 

 

As to the performance of the binding, I like NTN better than 75mm bindings (no experience with 7tm) as they are much more stable. I find the 75mm binding to be very wobbly, so NTN is in my opinion easier for a beginner, unless you have been cross country skiing more than you have been down hill skiing, then the stability of the NTN binding probably isn't needed. 

 

So all in all, NTN is a good binding for beginners, but I wouldn't bet my life on the bindings releasing. 

post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave W View Post

.As far as knowing anything about how the NTN skis; this being the internet none of us really knows if any of us is qualified to answer any question.

Well then, as far as that goes I have around 400 days of full time patrolling on NTN. FWIW.
post #14 of 14

Hi Bob

 

     I was thinking more in terms of no one here really knowing if MY word was worth the LEDs it's typed in.

 

Thank you for being a patrol. My mom was a senior NSPS for a lot of years, that's how I learned I'm too lazy to patrol. If I was hauling a sled I would probably go NTN as well,if not just clap on the training heels. 

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