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# Should there be another way of calculating DIN settings? - Page 2

I could sit here and rant about din for hours. Without getting too ornary, i think it is a joke. I grew up ski racing and have seen two people (under the age of 20)die because there bindings have prerealsed and they have run into the a tree and a lift tour. A little harsh? Ask their parents how harsh that is. I am 195, 511 sole length of 314 and should be on a 8 din. Are you kiddding me. I can kick my ski off in the lift line on this setting. I ski on only race spring metal housing bindings and ski anywhere from 16 (atomic and tyrolia) to 20 (Marker and Salomon). I never want my skis to come off when skiing at speed. Obviously i am an unusaul case, but think of this. You are skiing down a run enjoying your day in the trees with some broken snow and crud, you are heading down the falline, that ski flys off you are now out of control heading for the trees. Right now you are wishing you buried the din.
It is like going to vegas, din is always a gamble.
I'm not sure I completely understand the objection.

"DIN," when used in reference to ski bindings, I think refers to:

- A set of norms so that the force required to release one binding at a given "number" is equal (as nearly as possible) to the force required to release another binding at the same "number." This allows you to set different bindings to the same number, and avoids errors where a binding is set completely wrong because an "8" on one binding has nothing to do with an "8" on another.

- Also: a set of norms describing the dimensions and shape of the boot sole lugs that fit into the binding. This ensures that when you put a Lange boot into a binding, it will act (release-wise, anyway) the same as a Flexon boot in the same binding. It also does away with the notch-cutting, screwing on of stuff and gross adjustments you used to have to do (and which would impair the binding's function if done wrong).

I skied for quite a while "pre-DIN," and still have some skis sitting around with old bindings on them. These include Marker bindings with numbers that go from "0" to "5," and Salomon bindings that go to "20." The Marker bindings are racing bindings, and the "5" setting (or even the 3) is much harder to release than the Salomon maxed at 20. There are some older Marker bindings whose numbers don't correspond to the later Marker. On some, the heel and toe have different scales. See the problem?

As for charts that suggest settings based on variables (which I don't believe are actually part of the DIN standard, though I could be wrong) -- what, you think skiers should just guess at the setting?

Those charts don't purport to be a guide for how bindings should be set for activities other than ordinary recreational skiing. They certainly aren't recommended (by the manufacturers or anyone else) as appropriate settings for racing downhill. This should be fairly obvious, since every manufacturer makes a racing binding, which typically starts at 10.

Two side points:

I can kick off a binding at 8 (or 9, for that matter). I can even twist out of them without kicking. I also stay in a binding while doing ordinary skiing at 8.5.

The vast majority of skiers do (and should) avoid situations in which a premature release could be deadly, or could cause serious injury. The obvious reason: even if you are 100% confident in your bindings, if you're in such a situation, you're also in a situation in which catching an edge or losing your balance (two things that the vast majority of skiers do from time to time) could be deadly, or could cause serious injury. In a well-run downhill race (or training) at the sub-World Cup level, particularly for minors, the possibility of death from a premature binding release (or from catching an edge or missing a turn or failing to press bump properly) should be remote. If it's not, someone needs to put up padding or fences, or re-set the course.
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I don't think there is anything stopping you from turning the screw to set the bindings between the numbers. They are just a guideline.

Weight is a factor that takes into account how strong your ligaments are by basing it on how much weight they are used to hauling around. Height reflects how bone-length affects strength. Longer bones give you a physiological mechanical advantage; all other things being equal, longer-boned people can apply more force with the same muscle mass.

Boot sole length compensates for the force at the binding being farther away from the axis of rotation yielding more torque with the same release setting.

I'm about 165 lbs, about 5'8 and 3/4", I don't know my boot-sole length but my old race boots were size 8 and my current boots are size 10 if that means anything. When I was flying down the hill at 70 mph (and 145 lbs) I considered the risk of pre-release greater than possible damage to my knee and set my bindings at 9. I had them release at that setting once, and I'm glad they did release.

I haven't set bindings above 7 for at least 15 years. I can lift my boot out of the bindings when they are set at 7, but have not had them release on the hill in the last 15 years. I usually ski at a Din setting of 6 or 7.

When I had trouble with my bindings releasing was when I was learning to ski, and it was because I was applying forces in directions that were not conducive to good skiing. For example they would release if I caught an edge, or drove my tips straight into a mogul after jumping over two, or made some other bone-head move.

I can see wanting to stay hooked up to your boards if your flying along at mach schnell, where an unintentional release could do some serious and maybe lethal damage, but for cruising and mogul bashing, you should be trying to pefect your technique so that you don't need a high DIN setting.

I am amused that according to the charts, my bindings should be set higher now, even though I'm not as strong as I was 20 years ago, and have accumulated damage to my knees over the years, Just based on 20 lbs of exra muscle in the chest and shoulders (ok, maybe 5 lbs in the beer-belly) .
Quote:
 Originally Posted by skideeppow I could sit here and rant about din for hours. Without getting too ornary, i think it is a joke. I grew up ski racing and have seen two people (under the age of 20)die because there bindings have prerealsed and they have run into the a tree and a lift tour. A little harsh? Ask their parents how harsh that is. I am 195, 511 sole length of 314 and should be on a 8 din. Are you kiddding me. I can kick my ski off in the lift line on this setting. I ski on only race spring metal housing bindings and ski anywhere from 16 (atomic and tyrolia) to 20 (Marker and Salomon). I never want my skis to come off when skiing at speed. Obviously i am an unusaul case, but think of this. You are skiing down a run enjoying your day in the trees with some broken snow and crud, you are heading down the falline, that ski flys off you are now out of control heading for the trees. Right now you are wishing you buried the din. It is like going to vegas, din is always a gamble.
I am not a racer, but I agree with skideepow. I think premature release is a big danger for anyone who skis agressively. I met a ski instructor opening day one fall who had preleased into the trees and had brain damage. I had shoulder surgery last summer after coming out of the heel of some Salomon mounted skis I was trying. I hate premature ejectulation!!!

I have skied Markers for years with absolutely no problem with the toe. I have found that the Marker heels can be a problem and set the heelpiece half a number higher. I don't think I have ever preleased from the toe and I have been skiing Marker's since the old M-4 in the '70's. I am tall so I figured that gave me extra leverage over the heel, but it could be that heels have inherently less elasticity, and they also have to absorb the shock when you hit a bump or compression.

It sounds like the Look users can ski with a lower DIN, which is what Look claimed back in the 60's when the introduced their single pivot toe which had great travel.

None of the magazines seem to do any serious testing of bindings anymore. Wonder what Carl Ettlinger has to say. Is he still around? LewBob
Quote:
 Originally Posted by LewBob None of the magazines seem to do any serious testing of bindings anymore. Wonder what Carl Ettlinger has to say. Is he still around? LewBob
Yep: http://www.vermontskisafety.com/
Quote:
 Originally Posted by skiingman It is a chart based on risk level. Type II and III simply mean "willing to accept a higher level of risk". Racers/etc need to accept higher levels of risk than the chart allows, but don't think for a moment that a "strong skier's" tibia is any stronger than an average Joe's. The stronger skier is willing to accept more risk if he/she screws up, partially because he/she is less likely to screw up. -Garrett
I like what you say here, it is all about risk. Where I work it seems to be about ego when people choose skier types, i.e. the customer says "I am an expert so I should be a type III" Then I tell them the skier type has nothing to do with ability. I also find it funny that a guy (yes it is us guys with the ego probs) with rear entry boots and 20 year old skis who skis 4 days a year can be a true expert.
When I turned 50, the shops set my DIN lower, and my bindings occasionally released during ordinary skiing with no falling or apparent traumatic event. In order to get my DIN set higher, I claimed that I am a Type III skier (previously, I had always circled Type II on the form).

Setting 50 as an age when DIN should be lower has irritated me, to say the least. I'm a better skier now at 63 than I was at 50. Since having my bindings set at a higher DIN than ever, I have never had them release when they shouldn't or fail to release when I was glad they did, regardless of brand.

DIN is the product of engineers, but it's application to the skiing public is decided by lawyers and insurance companies. The ski techies have no choice but to comply with their decisions. That doesn't mean you need to accept their determination of your DIN. You can decide on your own to set it either higher or lower - but then, you legally assume a risk previously taken by someone else.
Quote:
 Originally Posted by skiingman It was meant to reduce spiral leg fractures. It did so beautifully. It is a chart based on risk level. Type II and III simply mean "willing to accept a higher level of risk". Racers/etc need to accept higher levels of risk than the chart allows, but don't think for a moment that a "strong skier's" tibia is any stronger than an average Joe's. The stronger skier is willing to accept more risk if he/she screws up, partially because he/she is less likely to screw up. I get really defensive when people accuse the chart of doing a poor job. It does a wonderful job. I would call myself a strong skier, and a fairly strong guy. In good bindings, I can ski at Type III without more than a half dozen pre-releases per season. In some manufacturers' bindings, I can't keep the skis on for 10 seconds at that setting, but that is a different issue. The chart is about risk. It predicts risk level quite well. Perhaps higher resolution would be nice, but the concept is based on solid scientific data that applies every bit as much today as it did 20 years ago. The real issue, is that binding technology SHOULD progress into an area where it can protect ligaments as well as bones. That will require a capital investment on someone's part, and why do that when you can stuff a 15-25 year old binding on a ski and charge someone 300 bucks for it? If I set my bindings so I could twist out standing still, I wouldn't stay in very long. My Type III setting makes that possible, but very difficult. Depending on manufacturer, my Type III setting is 9 or 8.5. I'm a lot younger than you. Probably a lot stupider too. The two go hand in hand. Perhaps you should consider this: Although your muscles and technique may allow you to keep up/kick my ass down the hill, is your bone density the same as mine? Is your tibia going to hold up to the bending or torsional stresses that it would have 30 years ago? The chart predicts risk. Its my feeling that as you have gotten older, you've had to increase your risk level in order to stay on the hill having a good time. You must understand that you are more likely to go out and break a leg now than you were 40 years ago, at my age...all other things being equal. I don't see how you can blame that on the standard...unless you believe the standard should allow more risk for older people. Admittedly, the arbitrary 50 year old cutoff is, well, arbitrary. I definitely believe a better job could be done on that front. The Atomic binding is an expensive toy, no more. I check my forward pressure every time I put my skis on. It takes me about 2 seconds to do. Working in a shop, my skis/bindings get screwed around with too often to not check my forward pressure. I suppose that if I couldn't reach down to/look at my heel piece the Atomic binder might be worth the extra grand. The computerized binding I want to see would make release an electromechanically completed event. -Garrett
Lots of good points. I do not set my bindings above 8 but in my younger days I set them higher for racing and skiing steeps. Given that up, except for recreational GS type racing, for old age. As for bone density, I suspect that I might have lost some but I do work out with weights, heavy ones, on a regular basis and while not as strong as 20 or 30 years ago, still very fit. As I age and my condition changes I will consider lower settings.

Bindings were meant, as earlier noted in this thread, to protect against lower leg, spiral fractures. They do not protect well against knee injuries as the knee structure is weaker. There are many variables to that and soft tissue strength would be impossible to measure in skiers so the DIN chart is a good solution for most skiers. The injury numbers bear that out in spades.

Forward pressure...too many skiers forget that important variable. Also there are issues with plates and proper binding release. New bindings with built in risers and bindings that allow float seem to be a safer solution than traditional bindings.

I do not believe that the standards should be arbitrarily changed to suit higher level skiers. If a skier wants to take more risk, informed or not, they should learn to properly adjust their own bindings. The DIN tables are conservative but have served the industry (financial protection) and skiers (injury protection) well in general. The pre DIN world was one of frequent leg breaks (don't know how I avoided one...just lucky). But like most compromises they are not perfect and do not take into account individual differences other than boot sole length, weight, height, age and skill level.

Somebody talked about a 6'7", 220lbs skier and a 5'5" skier of the same weight and assumed that the shorter skier was not fit. I have a son who is 5'6", 220lbs and is a power lifter and very fit. So height and weight are variables that are independent of fitnesses, etc. Even so, the injury stats have proven that the DIN standards have done their job in general even if there are exceptional individuals who do not fit the assumptions or averages.

In time and with more sophisticated computer analysis the standards should evolve. As for computer controlled binding systems I remain skeptical and will not use any early implementations. The current bindings have kept me safe and until I see stats on these new systems I will not be a part of the experiment. One thing about old age is for sure...it takes a hell of a lot more time to heal if you suffer an injury.

I have also found that with some bindings I can set them lower...Look/Rossi and not prerelease. In the past I have set markers a little higher but have not done so with the Markers on my Volkls. No problems. Salomon, no problems. Atomic, no experience...this year is the first time to ski them on my own skis.
Quote:
 Originally Posted by ssh
Got to be a liability aspect. Binding testing should be left to a serious engineering group. Unfortunately, the insurance and legal profession has the final input as to how the results are applied to release tables.
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