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How bad are Markers? - Page 3

post #61 of 152
Quote:
So I have to ask... What is it about the Markers that you like better than the Looks?

If any of you have Markers now, put an empty boot in your ski and really check out just how much sloppiness there is the coupling power of this binding. As Checkracer pointed out, the racers using Markers are not skiing on the same stuff we get as consumers and they have their bindings cranked. I doubt that their Markers have the sloppiness in them that we have with Marker's consumer level gear.
slop is so incredibly over hyped and discussed. i have never noticed play with any of the bindings i have been on in recent memory. maybe it's just me and not the binding? or maybe there is just a lot of hype over a binding doing what it is suppose to do. which ever. a lot of people complained about slop in AT bindings such as the freeride. again, haven't noticed it.

regarding marker vs. look, the biggest reason i think i like the markers better is easy in easy out. speed, efficiency, and ease of use are essential to me, especially when i consider performance to be similar. i will say that look will keep you locked in at a lower DIN when compared to the marker. big whoop, crank the marker up on more notch and they feel the same again.
post #62 of 152
My point about racers wasn't that Markers are bad, it was that racers are stupid so who cares what brand of bindings they use? Why on earth does anyone need a binding with a 22-30 DIN range? It is a recipe for injury. So why do racers feel they need bindings with such insane DIN settings in the first place? Well they believe that the only way to avoid pre-release is to keep cranking up the bindings. They believe they have the skill to prevent or recover from any fall and believe the risk from pre-release is greater than the risk from a failure to release.

I wonder what improvements in bindings there would be if racers had to use retail bindings and set at their recommended DIN according to the tables (or tibia head measurements). I think there would be a lot more focus on design improvements to eliminate pre-releases, rather than the current attitude of crank up the DIN.

I would rather look at ski patrollers as a group who spend a lot of time on snow and who ski more like me. People who have to pay for their own gear are a better indicator of quality than sponsored athletes.
post #63 of 152
A well deseved 1 star rating from me. :

IMO (as a Marker user who never had any problems) at least 80% of the readers are now thinking that Markers are bad, very bad. This has been discussed numerous times in the past and this thread is . Just look at the title: "How bad are Markers?". This says it all. The intention of the author is pretty clear to me. One should not bash Marker for a pre release or for what others think. Do you think that if one chooses Looks or Salomons they are safe?

Bottom line is: if you don't like Marker just dont buy their bindings. Buy Look or whaterver you like, just don't try to tell us they are bad because they're not. Why are you scaring people away from these bindings? They are just as good as any other top manufacturer's products.

Jamie
post #64 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwiski
My point about racers wasn't that Markers are bad, it was that racers are stupid so who cares what brand of bindings they use? Why on earth does anyone need a binding with a 22-30 DIN range? It is a recipe for injury.............. I think there would be a lot more focus on design improvements to eliminate pre-releases, rather than the current attitude of crank up the DIN.

Wow. That is an incredibly short sighted and uninformed quote. Regardless of technology to "eliminate pre-releases" there is NO WAY that a binding set on .....let's say ... 12 or 14 will hold you in on an icy, bumpy, steep, world cup Super G or Downhill at 70+ mph. Maybe you could get lucky for a run, carve well, stay perfectly balanced over your skis and somehow keep your skis on. But in reality, you're getting bounced around, skidding some, (often over icy chatter marks) and even totally throwing your skis sideways. In fact, I doubt many would stay in at those settings in a GS or SL even. And I don't care what brand of bindings you are on. Bindings, any brand, do not have brains. They don't know when you want to stay in. They are simply mechanical devices that will release at a pre determined point. They don't know whether or not the forces required to release were intentional or not. If a racer places intentional forces on their equipment, and they release unintentionally, they crank up the DIN. DUH! How is that a recipe for injury? If you are rounding a gate at 70 and your ski pops off, obviously the mechanical device which attaches your boot to your ski was stressed past the point where it will release. Turn it up. If the number marked on the binding reads "25" when you stop pre releasing, there you go! That's the number you need for Downhill! If you fall and start cartwheeling at 70, you will undoubtedly be putting more force on your bindings than you were when you just skiing on them, no? So chances are they will release. Could you still injure your knee in this situation?....... uh, well, in a 70 mph cartwheeling crash on ice? I would bet its a possibility...... Even IF the bindings released.

I'm using world cup racers as an example, but the principle is the same for all skiers.

(I'm really, really disapointed in myself again... I can feel myself getting stupider)


(is that a word?)
post #65 of 152
U.P.
Just let them say what they want. There's no point to continue this.

Look at the bright side: if they scare people away and fewer people decide to buy them, the shops will have to sell them quick and we will find the bindings we like at very low prices
post #66 of 152
I know there's no point..... I just can't help myself sometimes.
post #67 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by U.P. Racer
Wow. That is an incredibly short sighted and uniformed quote.

(I'm really, really disapointed in myself again... I can feel myself getting stupider)

(is that a word?)
Stupider is a word, but I don't know why you think I am wearing a uniform??

But this thread is definitely in the page 3 - off topic random ranting stage.
post #68 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwiski
Why on earth does anyone need a binding with a 22-30 DIN range? It is a recipe for injury. So why do racers feel they need bindings with such insane DIN settings in the first place? Well they believe that the only way to avoid pre-release is to keep cranking up the bindings. They believe they have the skill to prevent or recover from any fall and believe the risk from pre-release is greater than the risk from a failure to release.
I wonder what improvements in bindings there would be if racers had to use retail bindings and set at their recommended DIN according to the tables (or tibia head measurements). I think there would be a lot more focus on design improvements to eliminate pre-releases, rather than the current attitude of crank up the DIN.
Sorry but no way.
The difference between mortals and top racers as well as between WC slopes and popular trails is enormous. And, last but not least, it´s physics.
As U.P.R writes, the bindings "are simply mechanical devices that will release at a pre determined point".
They work with impulses.

Impulse = product of force F by time t during which the force acts.

If you ski slow: the impacts are longer, the force applies longer (t = higher) thus F must be smaller (lower setting)

If you ski fast: the impacts are shorter, F applies shorter (t = lower) thus F can be higher (higher setting)

The faster I go the shorter the time t and the greater the force F may be to achieve the same resulting impulse. At extreme speeds of WC DHs and SGs the impacts are extremely short and F (seting) may/must be correspondingly high.
And vice versa: you can´t be racing on retail bindings and settings.

BTW, the setting is always a dilemma: you set for (i) average situations vs. for (ii) the maximum possible impulse.
(i) means good protection but risk of prerelease
(ii) means less protection but hardly any prerelease.
The shop setting acording to charts doesn´t give you any option. Leaving safe waters of DIN -10 you (the racer, his serviceman) decide yourself what your preference is.
post #69 of 152
Checkracer - you not wrong, but you are relying on the assumption that bindings release instantly at a particular load and do not have any elasticity, which is not the case, so therefore your conclusion is invalid.

If you consider that Look and Salomon bindings claim 45mm of elasticity, then using the heel of the boot as the pivot point with a 300mm boot and 700mm of ski ahead of the boot (a conservative example) then the tip of the ski is able to travel 150mm laterally (6 inches) before releasing the boot. Now just how big are these race course ruts you are talking about?

I do find it amusing the way you are trying to argue that DIN settings should be higher the faster you ski. Let me just respond by asking if your knees ligamnets are stronger when you are going faster than when you are going slower?

DIN settings should be related to knee strength, and should not need to be changed for different speeds or snow types. The design should be able to absorb non-dangerous shocks which momentarily create a force greater than that required to cause the binding to release. But it is the lack of ability to absorb high intensity short duration shocks which makes Marker bindings such an utter, total POS.
post #70 of 152
This is a bizarre discussion. The people who don't like Marker quote personal experience, while those in favour invoke famous people. So let's have the same discussion about any other brand of bindings.

I'd be a short discussion, wouldn't it?!
post #71 of 152
I have had a pair of marker heel pieces shoot off the back of the skis and I fell on my a$$ and kepts sliding down the course.
post #72 of 152
Once or twice a year this forum can be counted on for a thread bashing Marker bindings. Sigh.

I like my Marker bindings - they let me out when I make a bad enough mistake that I'm going to fall. No complaints here about "pre-releases". I'm probably level 7/8, ski all black (steeps, bumps, crud, & powder) and easier double blacks and am probably average in terms of aggression for a 42 year old.
post #73 of 152
I actually had the toepiece of a Look binding pull (screws and all, not a pre-release) out on Regulator Johnson at Snowbird. But my Markers have never come unscrewed. Go figure:

Actually I have only owned 2 marker bindings since 1968. Got a M48 Titanium in 1990 and the AT Piston PCOS last year on some 6 Stars. Neither one was a problem except a snowboarder ran over the newer set last year and sheared off some plastic exposing the DIN. Marker replaced the part. I skied pretty much Looks all my life. Now have a Fritschi, but that's a different story. To much complainin going on; we need some snow soon.
post #74 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by ant
This is a bizarre discussion. The people who don't like Marker quote personal experience, while those in favour invoke famous people.
I'm not sure where you get the idea it's "bizarre," as you apparently haven't bothered to read it.

Posts 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, 13, 22, 27, 28, 30, 41, 43, 44, 48 and 63 quote personal experience and say positive things about Marker.

The "famous people" side-point was really started by an anti-Markerite, who said:
Quote:
because Hardly any big-mountain guys, and even fewer jibbers use Marker bindings.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ant
So let's have the same discussion about any other brand of bindings.

I'd be a short discussion, wouldn't it?!
Not that short:

Salomon:
Wound up on crutches for 6 weeks using them.
Same bindings used to pre-release constantly.

Look:
My father broke his leg using them.

Atomic:
Had a pair (still have them, actually, if anyone wants them) that pre-released at odd times.

OU-Matic:
Worked fine.

Tyrolia, Geze, etc.:
Never used.

Granted, there are reasons in each of these cases why the particular experience shouldn't be taken to indicate anything general about the brand (particularly not the current line).

But if one were just mindlessly to blurt anecdotes, you might get the inaccurate idea there's something wrong with these bindings.
post #75 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwiski
DIN settings should be related to knee strength, and should not need to be changed for different speeds or snow types.
Now that is absolutely, positively LUDICROUS!
post #76 of 152
Just Ski! You see the best skiers on older equip rockin' the mountain.
Forget all the HYPE. Ski DAMMIT!
post #77 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by checkracer
I just wrote I had nothing to add but this is (i) not about Marker and (ii) a special issue.

I recommend X-C bindings, e.g. Rotefella.
I would advise against that; I know a woman who broke her back cross-country skiing .
post #78 of 152
kiwiski:

I already quit the topic "Marker good or bad". I´m only ready to discuss some general questions concerning DIN setting and the way bindings work. I found that the parallel What DIN setting POLL and discussion
http://forums.epicski.com/showthread.php?t=29887
is more appropriate.
If you care to participate in that DIN setting thread istead of this "bizzare discussion" (I agree sjj) you find my recent post #33 there.

Added:
Since this thread has been moved to Ski Gear Discussion I will stay in the Marker thread when replying to kiwi´s general arguments.
I´m not happy about these two overlapping threads. Considering the pre-season date they seem to be each fall´s routine and probably inevitable. Next year I´ll just find the links, now I´m still fresh and communicative.
post #79 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwiski
Checkracer -
I do find it amusing the way you are trying to argue that DIN settings should be higher the faster you ski. Let me just respond by asking if your knees ligamnets are stronger when you are going faster than when you are going slower?

DIN settings should be related to knee strength, and should not need to be changed for different speeds or snow types. The design should be able to absorb non-dangerous shocks which momentarily create a force greater than that required to cause the binding to release. But it is the lack of ability to absorb high intensity short duration shocks which makes Marker bindings such an utter, total POS.
I must be getting too old. I could have sworn I posted this already. Maybe it was in the DIN thread. Anyway, at the risk of repeating myself.

DIN settings are a trade off, balancing the risk of having a binding not come off and damaging your soft tissues against the risk of having a binding come off and cause a fall that could otherwise be avoided.

At 30 mph having a ski come off is not so bad, but having the binding not release puts you at risk of soft tissue damage. Hence err on the side of having a lower setting for lower speeds.

At 70mph having a ski come off puts you at high risk of severe trauma. I think I would rather wreck my knee than ski into a rock face or large tree/stump at 70 mph because I couldn't make the turn on one ski. So I would use a higher DIN setting at higher speed.

Racers, like all competitive athletes, especially at international competition levels are flirting with injury just in order to be competitive. In addition to injury, racers include the risk of DNF in their calculations, they are in effect trading off some security for a better chance to win. So even if they are only racing a slow slalom course, they want higher DINS. I personally wouldn't put too much weight in that category, but then again I wouldn't take steroids either.
post #80 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost
I would advise against that; I know a woman who broke her back cross-country skiing .
How sad. Nevertheless I´m sure that the number of torn ACLs in skiers using alpine bindings dramatically exceeds that found in X-C skiers. Probably even if you add up the injured big toes.
post #81 of 152
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwiski
Checkracer - you not wrong, but you are relying on the assumption that bindings release instantly at a particular load and do not have any elasticity, which is not the case, so therefore your conclusion is invalid.

I do find it amusing the way you are trying to argue that DIN settings should be higher the faster you ski. Let me just respond by asking if your knees ligamnets are stronger when you are going faster than when you are going slower?

DIN settings should be related to knee strength, and should not need to be changed for different speeds or snow types. The design should be able to absorb non-dangerous shocks which momentarily create a force greater than that required to cause the binding to release.
kiwiski,
The F*t theory is not mine but from an article of a binding guru. I would be pleased if there was someone knowledgeable enough to tell and persuade me that it´s BS. I hope to be able to discuss it with either Premek Stepanek the ex-designer of Marker or maybe Gerhard Hammerle from Vist some day soon.

Higher DIN settings in racers skiing faster are not amusing, they are a fact.

Afaik, you´re right about different abilities to absorb high intensity short duration shocks. True, Markers aren´t said to be best here though I have yet to see some objective comparisons (I have always seen company handbooks with promotional arguments pro and contra).

You´re also right stating what binding designs should be able to do. They should but unfortunately they aren´t so good. Afaik, they are only - though pretty sophisticated - mechanical devices working with some simple data in a quite simple way. If there was some very advanced electronics reading, processing and deciding there would be only very few injuries left and we woudn´t have to pursue this debate.

(The other thread was moved and it´s probably better to stay here to prevent confusion.)
post #82 of 152
Kiwiski,

Clearly, when you say things like

"Now just how big are these race course ruts you are talking about?"

you haven't spent much time racing. They're a helluva lot bigger than 6 inches, that's for sure...

As far as release only being a function of ligament strength... if that were true, you'd make a compelling argument. However, if your knee is in a strong position (only a slight <30degree bend), your muscles are stabilizing your knee - that's how plenty of people that have had ACL injuries have skied on them for full seasons without even knowing it - your muscles stabilize your knee (not condoning skiing on a torn ACL, just using it as an example) a large part of the time, and if you're a professional ski racer, or even a solid expert skier, those muscles are quite strong. You're also a lot less likely to be put in a situation in which your knee is weak (backwards twisting, for example). Given an unlucky body position and unfortunate timing (muscles not engaged and stabilizing the knee), I bet almost anyone could tear their ACL with a binding set for skier type 2. The point is that "how strong are your ligaments" is not as simple a metric as you make it out to be - Remember last year when Bode walked out of his ski in a downhill? If you saw the video, it looked like it just was plucked right off, and it's set well north of 20.

Goran
post #83 of 152
oh, yeah, and on Marker bindings... They prereleased a bunch, then I thought I found the cureall with look/rossi, but then I went through a season of ejecting from those a lot (never as much as markers, though), and now
I'm on the race stock (FKS) bindings, which are just freakin' awesome, though a pain to take on and off and adjust... they feel a lot more solid than any other binding I've been on.

and, kiwiski, the literature with race bindings explicitly says "Do not crank these as you do regular stock bindings - they are designed to not prerelease".

And, fantastically, they don't!
post #84 of 152
Agreeing with some other posts (those by, among others, checkracer, Glytch and Ghost), and disagreeing with others:

No binding is an effective protection against knee injury. For one thing, the amount of force necessary to hurt a knee varies drastically depending on just how it's exerted.

At this point in history, bindings are primarily designed to protect against spiral fractures, which all of them do really, really well (particularly compared to bindings of 30 or 40 years ago).

A full-on electronic binding has been discussed here (among, I'm sure, many other places). Such a thing, properly designed and programmed, could really protect knees.

What DIN setting is appropriate varies with how (and how fast) you're skiing for at least two reasons: (i) the problem of distinguishing between "shocks" (meaning forces that are strong enough to hurt you, but of such short duration that they don't) and injury-causing twists and (ii) the relative risk of pre-release v. non-release. This is why there is the Type I-II-III distinction, as well as why racers often set their bindings at higher DINs.

Race bindings do, in fact release, even at the World Cup level. They release in falls fairly frequently. Somewhat less frequently, they release when they shouldn't.
post #85 of 152
There are a few points worth emphasizing.

(i) The protection philosophy. I had wanted to deal with this but sjj was faster pointing it out (it´s the time zone difference ). Historically, the issue and trauma were "broken legs", i.e. fractures and the aim was to prevent this sort of accidents. Over the years the bindings became fairly succesful and they offer good - though not 100% effective - fracture protection. It was a simpler task dealing with fairly constant bone strength (constant unless there´s strong osteoporosis in progress).
I´m sure that the old Marker Electronic of 1980 was a child of the old era and it concentrated on the simpler fracture prevention.

Otoh, the newer ligament issue is a much more complicated one because af all those variables involved (cf. also Glytch a few posts back). IMO that´s also one of the reasons there are no electronic bindings ready to hit the market.

(ii) Current mechanical bindings are strongly influenced by the time factor.
If the shocks/impulses are longer than about 1.5-2 seconds (which is typical for recreational falls occurring at lower speeds) the time plays little role. It´s the DIN setting that decides. The release takes place in a "quasi-static" regime.

Otoh, in t = about 1 sec the dynamic mode appears where the release mechanics works as I described yesterday and where the time t is decisive.
F = 200N and t = 1 sec equals F x t 200Ns
F = 400N and t = .5 sec equals the same impulse 200Ns
F = 1000N and t = .2 sec equals the same 200Ns
That´s why you can set the bindings with higher DIN if short-time shocks are expected (as in racing on ice). Truth is that if such a binding occurs in a "slow" release situation it won´t open. That´s the risk a racer with current ("non-intelligent") bindings has to take.

If the premise and technical explanation are correct we have a strong theoretical argument why skiers up to a certain level should stay with the "official" setting and not experiment.
At the same time it´s a fairly simple explanation of what top-level skiers and racers know already: you need more.

Again, I have used the article I already mentioned, written by a friend of mine and brother of Mr. Seidl, the producer of all Markers at a Czech place called Kostelec. Unfortunately, the author died four years ago. I miss him very much not only because I can´t discuss it now again.)
post #86 of 152
One thing bothers me: how can a binding be "unelastic" and have a lot of slop as to not communicate properly with the ski? I would think that a more elastic binding would translate into a less precise input transmission, no? (btw, i have no side here, i ski rentals)
post #87 of 152
Non-elastic means that once dispalced, it does not return to centre.
post #88 of 152
Isn't the DIN scale linear... at least until you hit 20 or something? My comment is primarily regarding the comments made by kiwiski. If it were required to make a DIN of 12 stay on at WC racing speeds/forces, an dyou made this DIN of 12 actually do that task you would be changing the very thing that DIN is based on. Being a constant scale - if you adjust one part of the scale... or adjust how it is read, you are adjustng the very scale that you are reading, and it no longer remains a constant. So if Herman was skiing a DIN of 12 in his DH races, most of us would never break a DIN of 5.

As for the Marker bindings discussion... I will stick to my original comment that a binding is a binding. If they really were so horrible do you think that so many major ski companies would use their bindings? ...and you can't go blaming "The Man" because in this day in age if a product is unsafe or harms even the smallest percentage of its users, the entire company goes under. Consumers will not tolerate it. Look to the pharmasutical industry for examples.

Later

GREG
post #89 of 152
the only thing faulty or defective around here is the idea that you wingnuts know how to ski!

that's right ... you just keep on blaming the equipment!
post #90 of 152
Which is it, faulty or defective?
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