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Almost embarassed to ask, but...

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
...any recommendations on bindings?

Thanks to everyone for the excellent advice on a good bump ski that works all over the mountain. I'm still demo'ing but I'm leaning heavily toward the new Mod X (Axis) based on my opinions when I skied it and the opinions of most people here.

The ski is waiting for my decision at my shop but I haven't even thought about bindings. For the last 20 years, I've skied K2's with Marker bindings but for no other reason that they are marketed together. I've never had an opinion on bindings but I'd like to have some idea of what to look for before I walk into the shop.

Also, what about lifter plates?

Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 18
My recommendation KevinH
yes get bindings. you need them to keep your skis on your feet.

Oh you mean which brand. Does K2 offer a better Warr with a specific binding, If so go for it. Salomon extends their warranty to 2 years on the skis if you install Salomon bindings. Atomic does the same. Otherwise the rest is up more opinion than anything else until you really start to get nitpicky. Some skiers like one brand over another due to an experience or what they read about problems but all bindings do pretty much the same thing. Attach your skis to your boots and release if a certain amount of energy is applied to them. Safety and lawsuits pretty much dictate that all the MFG are trying to make the safest binding they can. That being said, do a search on bindings on the forum. The experiences and opinions of the skiers on this site vary. from pre-release concerns, Weight, ramp angle, variable positions, turntable, affect on skis flex.
Do the colors match my skis? din rating.
As far as lifter plates. they give you more leverage on the skis but they can also make the ski less stable or feel less stable since you do not have as direct connection to the snow and you are higher off the ski. Some people can over power their skis by adding that extra lift until they learn to ski them properly. Just some thoughts. I do not use lifters per se but The Salomon s900 power axe has it's own "lifers" built in. <FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by dchan (edited April 26, 2001).]</FONT>
post #3 of 18
You are acutally not the first person to ask.
See this thread that yours truly started

Needless to say, I still haven't bought any yet, since I know the ones I want (Salomon 912) are going to be more discounted at my local ski shop as of May 1.
post #4 of 18
KevinH - I wouldn't worry much about lifters for bump skiing. Then more lift you have under your bindings, the slower you'll be able to change edges (quick edge sets = more fun in the bumps).

Most bindings offer some form of lift and that should be plenty. I'd avoid anything like plates under the bindings. They will give you more leverage for carving but hamper the ski's bumpability.
post #5 of 18
What Gill said is correct, but I'll add one addition to that. Make sure the bindings have the ability to "float", allowing the center of the ski to bend naturally when a boot is in it. Not allowing the ski to flex properly will lead to more stress on the ski, less forgiveness of the ski in the bumps, and therefore, making the skis harder to control and the ride less smooth. If the bindings don't allow the ski to flex normally, usually a lifter or plate can be added that will allow the plate to float, and the ski to bend at the center.
post #6 of 18
They are all pretty good. I have Markers. I probably would have been jsut as happy with Salomons. I have the M51 Turbo SC. These have a select control switch at the toe. This stiffens or softens the ski, giving you 3 skis in one. #1 is the softest which is good for powder and bumps as others said. 13mm lifts as they sit. This gives more edge pressure but a bit slower from edge to edge. Might not want to go any higher than 12 or 13mm. But that's your choice.
The only draw back to my bindings is I now have one more gadget to fiddle with. But then... I love gadgets, can't help it.
I do like the idea of teh afd device (anti friction device) protected under metal and away from all the mud & blood & beer we walk through in the parking lot with our boots on. (We're not supposed to ... but we do.)

Life's a pain... then you nap. Cat philosphy
post #7 of 18
One binding i wouldnt get is Salomon, i had the S850 binding and guess what, they dont release in a backward fall. I have the knee injury to prove it. Atomic bindings release straight back and even have a seperate setting on the toe for it. LOOK also are supposed to release straight back at the toe in a backward fall. Some others do as well but the Salomons i had didnt and i paid the price. I have LOOK pivot bindings on my K2 Mod X ski's and Atomic race race 310 on my Atomic 9.20 race ski's.
post #8 of 18
You'll hear emotional "facts" about Makers, Salomons, Looks . . . . etc. Fact is, they have all gotten pretty damn good these days. I'm only in my 30's and yet binding technology on all fronts is a far cry from what it was not long ago. In Europe the skiers are fanatics about comparing injury rates to bindings, settings and etc (though they don't SUE as much as Americans do! <G>). And the publicity keeps 'em all pretty honest, there may be technology gaps that last for a season or so - but in general, between corporate spying, worries about lawsuits and such . . . . they are all making pretty equivalent products now.

You won't hear this much, because it much more fun to compare and contrast. And if you have invested a lot of time in learning all the quirks about each brand, and now you can sound very omniscient by saying "here is what is wrong with brand X here is what is great about brand W --- well the last thing you want is some spoilsport saying "they all are pretty equal these days". I know, I've been on both sides.

But the fact is, in these days of computer aided design, composite high-strength and low friction materials . . . . there are a lot of damn good bindings out there. Folks will squawk - but just find bindings that are appropriate for you in DIN setting, and run with it.
post #9 of 18
First, I have Salomon bindings and they release whenever I am throwing an invert and land on my back, but that can probably be contributed to the impact of hitting the ground from a pretty good height at some speed. And I really can't think of any situation where a backward fall would need the binding to release. I guess if you landed on your back off a jump in deep pow and your ski got stuck or something, but the typical backward fall doesn't do a whole lot that could cause knee injurys from what I've seen.
post #10 of 18
why would you need a release in a rear falling position or upward release?

Every one keeps talking about knees however all the medical reporting has shown that the ACL injury happens long before even the best toe up release happens even on the bindings designed to pop the front toe piece! even on the burt or spademan binding the problem would still exist. The way to correct this or lessen the risk is to fix the boot (check out Lange's new design) Most of us have heard all the stories about how this binding is better for this and that. As mentioned before by me and others, Lawyers and the sue happy american public have pretty much evened the score on which binding is best. (none of them) each has it's marketing team to push one feature or another and one may hop out in front for a short (half season) for some new innovation but they all catch up real quick as far as safety.. I think it's more about looks, weight and din range. maybe the feature of moving your boot forward or backwards a little to change the way the ski behaves and product loyalty than about safety.
post #11 of 18
Gdubs- Your expertise in skiing is exceptional, but I might disagree about a backward fall/release not causing problems.

This is when the ACL injury occurs. Here... help me up on my soap box. Ugh! There! made it! OK... Class is in session, albeit, most of you probably know this stuff. Here goes...
Backward release is important during a slow, backward twisting fall which happens with beginners and intermediates, and even us sometimes. This is why...
The part of the ski sticking out behind you is sometimes refered to as the phantom heel. Where the tail of your ski is, that is where your heel now is. Next- We have a stiff boot which holds your foot and lower leg ridged, basically in one position. It can't move backwards. Put these two items together and you have disater when the skier gets into the backseat and the hips drop lower than the knees! Now the skier has 80 to 90% of his/her body weight behind his legs and lower than the knees. that's a tremendous amount of presure on the knees. When the beginner or inter, or sometimes us bails we fall backwards in this position and (especially the beginner and inter) will turn the body and try to put the hand down instinctively to break the fall. Result is torn ACL's! That phantom heel is a terrible amount of leverage against the knees. Even if we don't turn the body (the twist) it still happens. This is a medical and physiological fact.

Markers are designed with this in mind. They have an upward release for 180° from one edge around the front to the other edge. This so you are protected for any angle of backward twisting fall.

Your DINS have to be set right along with the forward pressure. Durnig ASTM they should test at least in teh 'in use' range. You have heard guys say, "Well, I'm pretty fast and I don't want my skis to come off so after my bindings are mounted I always crank them up a couple of notches." these guys are just asking for it, big time! Yep, you'll hear them say, "Well I've don it for years now and I've had no problem." So what?! There will come a time!
Gdubs would probably have his calculated at a III skier because he jumps. There's a lot of downward pressure happening there. A lot of shock. The DIN chart takes this into account. To crank them up even higher is dancing with the devil.

Life's a pain... then you nap. Cat philosphy
post #12 of 18
These medical reports don't take into account that the skier cranked up his dins. During a law suit the skier will definately not mention that. I and other techs have personally seen this happen. Tis is why we sign off on the paperwork, and when the customer comes to pick up his skis, regardless of his ability, we physically SHOW him the din setting on the paperwork and then SHOW him the din settings on the ski to prove that they match the paperwork! We do this without fail. If any tech doesn't do this it's lawsuit city time.
I've personally seen some come back to our other tech at the shop and threaten law suit because his bindings didn't release. They crank them up because in their minds they think a higher setting means they are a top skier. They get hurt, and before they come back to the shop they turn the dins back down. We know better.
I've done a backward twister at times. One time it happened becaue I did absolutely every thing wrong in a turn- backseat, weight on inside ski, probably thinking or looking at some pretty girl I just passed. Down I went. When I got up to pick up my yard sale I wondered where my right ski was. Found it. I didn't even feel it come off! Not even a tug. The upward release did its job.
No binding is perfect, but they've become a lot better over the years. Most of teh injuries due to bindings is from bindings that haven't been check for years, Bindings riding on top of the roof all the way up to the hill year after year, and the skier cranking up the dins because he knows better than the tech, or telling the tech he's a III skier when he really is a II skier. They think III skier means expert. Here's the egoski thing again. I have the III skier ability but I don't ski III skier anymore, so I go II skier. It doesn't mean I'm a worse skier. It's how you ski, not yuor ability level, per se.
Anybody interested in a set of good old bear claw bindings? .... cheap? They won't come off. We were taught during a fall, get your legs in the air, fast. You want macho? Here's macho for ya! 50 mph, wood skis, no metal edges, bear claws! Any successful law suits are due to a shark attorney, not the bindings unless there was a proven defect in the binding.

Life's a pain... then you nap. Cat philosphy
post #13 of 18
Good job Jyarddog, thats exactly what happened to me, all my falt and because i had the Salomon S850 my ski's stayed on and with that long lever(tail of ski) i had tremendous strain on both knees but my right took the brunt and iam still limping now. Plus i didnt have the din cranked up higher than it should be, in fact i had it set a little lower (1/2din) because i thought the shop set them a little to high. The Salomons work fine most of the time except the backward fall like i did. After that i did some research on which bindings release at the toe upwards so to help in backward falls. Any new binding can release in a regular fall, so for those who say i have had no problems, well either did i until this year. After that i would'nt use any binding that isnt made to release in backwards fall. Only thing about Marker is that when i looked at one of those sample plastic models that you can see how the binding can release, i noticed that on the markers they would only go so far up at the toe until the binding hit a stop which i wasnt sure if it went up enough to let the boot out but i guess it does from what that other guy said. But just to make it clear backward falls can hurt your knees without a doubt, dont let anyone tell you differnt or i could show them my MRI scan if they would like.
post #14 of 18
DC9mm- I wan't sure of the accuracy of Salomons not doing a backward release, but you taught me something new here! Thank you! Actually I thought all bindings had some kind of upward release, but I guess not. Doesn't Salomon have a pivotal head on some models? I remember us (Gart)one year having a hand held toe model one would squeeze a lever and the toe would move uppward and to the side. Maybe that was just one model, or maybe it doesn't do it as well as the selling toy shows!
Also, what about the beginner units such as the Quad series? Q300 & Q500? Since they are for beginners, do they have an upward releae? My younger daughter has a set of these; now I'm a bit worried.
When my M51's release I can't even feel it when they do! The newer ones are 20% more accurate in this respect. If you have any other neat info on safety, anomolies in ski products or tips you know of, keep in touch with me at jyarddog@spiritone.com . I'll be out of state in the first week of May for an in-laws wedding. After that it's back to Mt. Hood!

Life's a pain... then you nap. Cat philosphy
post #15 of 18
Phil,, yes the driver toe on the Salomons can release upward but first it MUST go sideways first and then they have a little upward ability but first they must go sideways. In my case i fell straight back on a mougul run and didnt have sidways pressure on the binding so what gave were my knees, pain on both but i couldnt walk on right leg at all because of knee injury. But your right about in most cases this doesnt happen and the Salomons work fine. One thing i should say is i never popped out of the Salomons when i didnt want them to come off, so they do hold you in quite well. Plus they did release well too in all my other falls, just not that one backward fall i had. <FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by dc9mm (edited April 29, 2001).]</FONT>
post #16 of 18
The Atomics have a rearward release feature but it may not do you any good, especially if your an aggressive skier. I was talking to a race coach earlier this season who was saying he had all his kids on atomics turn off the rear release after they started popping out of them in the middle of turns.
Anyone else had this problem?
post #17 of 18
This discussion is rather interesting re: Salomon bindings. My first inclination, as has been expressed in earlier posts, is that with all the litigation pressure, modern bindings are all pretty good and fairly similar.

However, I am wondering if it's coincidence that I have Salomon S710 bindings and am now recovering from left ACL surgery after a backwards fall. I'm an advanced skier who had never been hurt in 25 years of skiing. I wasn't worrying about the details while I was falling, but my best recollection is that I made a hockey stop to the right (with my left leg downhill), got caught in the spring snow and fell backwards. My skis stayed on and it wasn't a spectacular or violent fall at all, but nevertheless, blown ACL and MCL. Whether it was a straight back and a twisting back fall, I don't know for sure. I didn't have a protractor with me during the fall!

I've skied on Salomon bindings a fair amount through the years and this is my first injury. (A backward fall is unusual for me, but surely this isn't the first time I've ever done it. Unfortunately, all the factors must have lined up just right for the injury to occur.)

Salomon is a popular brand, so maybe anecdotal evidence builds (i.e. "my friend who got hurt uses Salomon bindings, therefore...), when really it's just a matter of percentages. However, I did find it interesting that the brand and type of fall brought into question here happened to match with my personal anecdotal evidence.

I'd be curious to see some truly scientific research on this subject.<FONT size="1">

[This message has been edited by Wags (edited May 08, 2001).]</FONT>
post #18 of 18
>>that can probably be contributed to the impact of hitting the ground from a pretty good height at some speed<<


>>Gdubs would probably have his calculated at a III skier because he jumps. There's a lot of downward pressure happening there. A lot of shock. <<

And see - here I thought that the greatest skiers tended to go big, but also intelligently pick nice steep landing zones, so actually the impact is not that hard. I thought is was mostly the 'wanna-be's' hucking their meat onto flat landings.

Well, I learn something new every day!
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