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Any objective evidence on the increased ease of release of turntable-type (Pivot) heels?

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

Hi Gang,

 

I know that the advantages/disadvantages of the Look/FKS Pivot-type turntable heel bindings have been covered in this and other forums ad nauseum. Yes, they are lower, have less delta, lighter, simpler (maybe not), solid. They also have less adjustability, a bit finicky to put on in deep snow, etc.

 

The one aspect that is repeatedly mentioned is that it is easier on the knees because of the rotational freedom of the turntable heels. But, in reality, all of that has been based on subjective evidence, etc. Has anyone ever seen actual measurements that have shown explicitly that the turntable heel is so much safer? (I know that is not an easy thing to prove).

 

I have been thinking about this for a bit since I am trying to decide on either the Look/FKS Pivot 14 versus the standard PX-12/Axial 2 type of bindings for my next pair of ~105 mm skis.  Looking at the Pivot type of binding, it seems obvious that a turntable heel allows the foot to pivot if disengaged from the toe binding and still attached at the heel. But, thinking about this carefully, I am starting to doubt my own observations.

 

For a non-pivot type of binding,  If during a fall your ski twists sideways, I would expect, if all settings are appropriate, that the toe and heel would release virtually at the same time since the wings on the toe would move sideways and the heel no longer being pressured from the toe binding would also release.

 

OTOH, on the pivot type of binding, if the same thing happened, somehow the conventional wisdom believes that the ease of release would be more "instantaneous" or less stressful, since the turntable allows the heel to rotate. BUT, once the toe begins to release, I find it hard to believe that the heel, without that consistent fore-aft pressure would still somehow be attached to the turntable, rotate, and then release more safely.  Is it even possible to remain locked in the heel without the toe being engaged - seems unlikely to me - maybe someone has evidence of that?  So, if the functionality of the heel as being more free to rotate is its great selling point, not sure if it is truly an advantage.

 

All of the above assumes that the binding settings are all appropriately set for the skier's weight and ability.

 

By the way, I love the elasticity of the Look/Rossi bindings and don't think I would ever go with anything else. I am just trying to get a better handle on the advantage of the Pivot-type of heel relative to the standard binding. Is it truly worth it for us mere mortals that don't need a 14 DIN binding to go with the Pivot 14 versus a regular PX12. I normally ski at DIN 8-9 on the PX12 and never experience any pre-releases; the built-in elasticity is amazing!!

 

Has anyone seen any objective comparisons between the two types of bindings that truly address my question? I am planning on buying some new bindings this weekend, so input would be greatly appreciated.

 

Cheers,

Nick

post #2 of 19

Both are great bindings, go with the one of your choice.

Which ever one's "advantages" better line up with your needs. PX12 is a great value as

they can be had for around $100 if you shop around.


Edited by Rossi Smash - 3/8/14 at 4:02pm
post #3 of 19
You seem pretty argumentative about this; since you already own and like PX's, what's the issue? FWIW, the conventional wisdom is based on biomechanics, not epidemiology. Assigning cause of actual injuries post hoc to normal binding design variation is beyond the capability of current science. And the alleged advantage is less about whether the rotation of the heel helps toe release - makes sense but conjectural, somewhat like the ink spilled over AFD's - than about the pivot spring's orientation to the tibial shaft; it is linked to reduced tibial loading during twisting falls. My orthopedist, who's an avid skier and knows his biomechanics, swears by this.

But if that's a benefit I'd guess it's a small one. Knees blow up more than bones nowadays. Personally, I like Pivots because they hold me in during high impact activities like racing better than any other design I've tried.
post #4 of 19

Both heel designs rotate.  IMO the big advantage of the FKS style bindings is the METAL construction.

 

otherwise what Rossi Smash said.

 

Royal

post #5 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by royal View Post

Both heel designs rotate.  IMO the big advantage of the FKS style bindings is the METAL construction.

otherwise what Rossi Smash said.

Royal
Agree about the metal. But how does the PX heel rotate? It releases straight up, just like any other traditional rig, no?
post #6 of 19

my mistake, I was thinking about the the pivot heels that rotate but not as much as the FKS style heels. too many letters and numbers designating the Same models across brands.  I get confused. 

 

Royal

post #7 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post


Agree about the metal. But how does the PX heel rotate? It releases straight up, just like any other traditional rig, no?

 

IT does not rotate but the boot heel does in a lateral toe release.

post #8 of 19

I would chose the binding that st the least troublesome to step back into in deep snow.

post #9 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by DanoT View Post
 

I would chose the binding that st the least troublesome to step back into in deep snow.

 

IF deep snow is what you ski in often...

 

not a problem out this way  :mad 


Edited by Rossi Smash - 3/9/14 at 12:08pm
post #10 of 19

In soft snow, I find the FKS/Pivot is one of the easier bindings to get into.

post #11 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post

In soft snow, I find the FKS/Pivot is one of the easier bindings to get into.

school me on this Phil, is that because you can easily pull up the heel piece instead of clicking in or you're saying that actually clicking in by pushing the boot heel against the binding is easier compared to sth/royal bindings?
post #12 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post

You seem pretty argumentative about this; since you already own and like PX's, what's the issue? FWIW, the conventional wisdom is based on biomechanics, not epidemiology. Assigning cause of actual injuries post hoc to normal binding design variation is beyond the capability of current science. And the alleged advantage is less about whether the rotation of the heel helps toe release - makes sense but conjectural, somewhat like the ink spilled over AFD's - than about the pivot spring's orientation to the tibial shaft; it is linked to reduced tibial loading during twisting falls. My orthopedist, who's an avid skier and knows his biomechanics, swears by this.

But if that's a benefit I'd guess it's a small one. Knees blow up more than bones nowadays. Personally, I like Pivots because they hold me in during high impact activities like racing better than any other design I've tried.

 

This^^^.  No reason to think the Look pivot bindings offer an advantage in mitigating ACL injuries compared to other conventional bindings.  They are just as bad as the rest of them.

post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post


school me on this Phil, is that because you can easily pull up the heel piece instead of clicking in or you're saying that actually clicking in by pushing the boot heel against the binding is easier compared to sth/royal bindings?

it is much easier than most bindings. The Royal/ Axial/ PX bindings being some of the hardest to step into for lightweights.

post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by BackBowlin View Post
 

 

This^^^.  No reason to think the Look pivot bindings offer an advantage in mitigating ACL injuries compared to other conventional bindings.  They are just as bad as the rest of them.

 

Maybe, maybe not.

 

I can ski a LOOK binding at a lower DIN setting without pre release, which can bring me down one "skier type". THIS is a good thing.

 

I don't think ACL injuries are the end all of skiing injuries. These work just fine for me without ANY compromise. So, I can't agree that they are "bad" at all.

post #15 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post


school me on this Phil, is that because you can easily pull up the heel piece instead of clicking in or you're saying that actually clicking in by pushing the boot heel against the binding is easier compared to sth/royal bindings?

 

It's because of the cam/spring arrangement, which is also what gives it so much elastic travel as well.

 

Other bindings can be more of a light switch type action, on/off, which can require a stout slam down of the boot into the heel piece.

post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfa81 View Post


school me on this Phil, is that because you can easily pull up the heel piece instead of clicking in or you're saying that actually clicking in by pushing the boot heel against the binding is easier compared to sth/royal bindings?


@Whiteroom and @Rossi Smash pretty much answered your question. But the Sth/Sth2 heel are on the easier and the Royals (specifically the Squire) are some of the hardest.

post #17 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post
 

 

"Maybe, maybe not.  I can ski a LOOK binding at a lower DIN setting without pre release, which can bring me down one "skier type". THIS is a good thing."

 

Agree, lower DIN setting is a good thing for your tibias, especially for aggressive skiers who are at high DIN settings.  Unfortunately, the ACL does not benefit here.  It's still bad in that regard.

 

 

"I don't think ACL injuries are the end all of skiing injuries. These work just fine for me without ANY compromise. So, I can't agree that they are "bad" at all."

 

Very true.  Poor retention or "pre-release" is as bad on the mountain as it is apres ski in the chalet.  After an episode on Vail's North Rim which left me helplessly sliding down the cliff wall and could have easily resulted in serious bodily injury, I learned a lesson on the value of retention.  I subsequently switched to Look bindings because of the poor retention characteristics of the other manufacturer's bindings. 

 

Look's ARE a compromise though because the ACL remains at risk.  Wish they would offer an improved version providing both outstanding retention and ACL protection. 

post #18 of 19

I thought the low delta sounded wrong to me!

 

Look/Rossi/VIST                       + 5mm       
Look/Rossi Pivot/FKS                +5mm (only flat with their 5mm toe shims)  

 

this is the height the heel is above the toe. +5mm is higher than most

post #19 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post

@Whiteroom
and @Rossi Smash
pretty much answered your question. But the Sth/Sth2 heel are on the easier and the Royals (specifically the Squire) are some of the hardest.

Thank you guys! I think I got confused with the look px which was actually the one I heard was pita to click back in!
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Any objective evidence on the increased ease of release of turntable-type (Pivot) heels?