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bindings 101

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'm feeling guilty about skiing with antique bindings on my SGs. I now know next to nothing about current bindings. I do like the fact that my old bindings didn't release upwards at the toe the last time I got thrown into the back seat. That would have been ugly: . Still I'm thinking about replacing them. I'm also feeling just a little guilty about skiing the SGs on public hills; they don't come to life until I get over about 50 mph. So I'm thinking about getting some GS skis. There are some Nordica GSRs on E-bay. It's ok if you beat me to them. I'm just using them as an example. It seems that the best bargains come flat, or maybe with a race plate made to be drilled for bindings that go on flat skis. I've also seen some skis that require "race interface" bindings : and some salomons that need : . In any event I will likely be buying some binders this year.


So tell me what I need to know about bindings.
post #2 of 21
Skis come three ways:
Flat- No plate, rails, nothing. Bindings are mounted directly to the ski, drilling directly into the core. Usually found on race skis, junior skis, freeride skis, and twin tips. Race skis that come flat are designed to work with a plate, like a VIST or Marker piston control. Twin tips and freeride skis come this way to preserve snow feel underfoot.
Plate- A plate that is just drilled into the core of the ski. May or may not have free floating properties that allow the ski to maintain a natural flex under the binding. Most require a certain binding. Usually found on race, intermediate, and advanced skis. Race skis do this to increase both torsional and longitudinal stiffness and provide lift. Intermediate and advanced skis do it to provide freefloating properties without the cost of integration.
Integrated- Core is milled and a rail is mounted into it, thus providing the best power transfer and smoothest flex. Found on expert carving skis. Expensive.

As mentioned above, some systems only work with certain bindings. the affiliations are:
Marker: K2, Volkl, Nordica, Blizzard
Look/Rossignol: Dynastar, Rossignol
Tyrolia: Head, Fischer, Elan
VIST: Stockli, 4FRNT
Atomic and Salomon both use their own bindings. Line used their own bindings back when they were still in production.

A quick rundown of each binding brand:
Marker: Poor amount of brand loyalty due to former prerelease problems, now solved. Flagship technology is "piston control." Uses a piston at either the toe or midsole to dampen vibrations from the tip. Marker claims only "true mechanical" toe which causes low elasticity and increased toe release. Pairs with Nordica XBS, Volkl IPT, K2 M1, and whatever the Blizzard system is called.
Salomon: Generally good brand loyalty. The original system binding pared with old Pilot technology. Adjustable wings on "S" series cause problems for some with prerelease, but is easily solved with some loctite/epoxy. New "Z" binding boasts light weight and high rigidity and s used with new Smarttrak system.
Rossi/Look: Highest amount of loyalty due to now discontinued Pivot heel. Still uses turntable heel in race bindings. High elasticity, highest forward pressure. Look claims the Pivot was discontinued so a binding with more forward pressure could be developed; real reason is most likely to create a system-compatible binding. Fairly heavy.
Tyrolia: Growing market share because of success of Mojo 15 for freeriding and FF17 for racing. Diagonal release, zero residual fricton AFD. Mojo is light. FF is pretty heavy.
VIST: Heavy. Previously used by Nordica until dumped for Marker. You probably won't see these much.
Atomic: Heavy binding, poor rep as a result of recalls several years ago concerning springs that caused massive amounts of prerelease. Atomic will now be using Salomon Z bindings.

Some terms:
Elasticity- How far the boot can travel in the binding before being released. Highest in Look, lowest in Marker. High elasticity translates to good freeskiing/bump performance where the binding is continuously being subjected to high forces, low elasticity translates to more reliable, but also more frequent, release.
Rigidity- A binding shouldn't twist or flex laterally. This allows power to be effectively transmitted to the ski. Highest in Salomon and Look, lowest in Tyrolia.

I may have missed a few things, but that's the gist of it.
post #3 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
I'm feeling guilty about skiing with antique bindings on my SGs. I now know next to nothing about current bindings. I do like the fact that my old bindings didn't release upwards at the toe the last time I got thrown into the back seat. That would have been ugly: . Still I'm thinking about replacing them. I'm also feeling just a little guilty about skiing the SGs on public hills; they don't come to life until I get over about 50 mph. So I'm thinking about getting some GS skis. There are some Nordica GSRs on E-bay. It's ok if you beat me to them. I'm just using them as an example. It seems that the best bargains come flat, or maybe with a race plate made to be drilled for bindings that go on flat skis. I've also seen some skis that require "race interface" bindings : and some salomons that need : . In any event I will likely be buying some binders this year.


So tell me what I need to know about bindings.
They're SG, and you'll be doing over 50 in them, so you need to crank up the DIN. By a wierd coincidence, there's an Atomic 1018 race binding put up today for sale or trade by someone with my exact handle in that forum. :
post #4 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2-turn View Post
They're SG, and you'll be doing over 50 in them, so you need to crank up the DIN. By a wierd coincidence, there's an Atomic 1018 race binding put up today for sale or trade by someone with my exact handle in that forum. :
Let me guess. The DIN goes from 10 to 18? I'm not that heavy. Besides I've heard about those heavy Atomic bindings with the bad springs. You must think I know next to nothig about current bindings! Still, I may be interested. Did you post them on the free stuff forum?
post #5 of 21
Thread Starter 
BTW, What's a good price on Look P12s?
post #6 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
I've heard about those heavy Atomic bindings with the bad springs. You must think I know next to nothig about current bindings!
You asked a vague, open-ended question with a lead in that makes you seem like you havent paid any attention to bindings since rotomats were current. I gave you a big, long winded state-of-current-affairs on bindings. Responses like this make you seem like the HighwayStar of the gear forum. Don't be that guy.

Look P12s- $80-100 shipped is pretty fair used, $130 new is a standard shop price.
post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Takecontrol618 View Post
You asked a vague, open-ended question with a lead in that makes you seem like you havent paid any attention to bindings since rotomats were current. I gave you a big, long winded state-of-current-affairs on bindings. Responses like this make you seem like the HighwayStar of the gear forum. Don't be that guy.

Look P12s- $80-100 shipped is pretty fair used, $130 new is a standard shop price.
Just trying to be funny. Sorry. Thanks for the input.
post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 
I really haven't looked closely at bindings since I bought the 490s on the SGs.
post #9 of 21
P12s do not match an SG ski....
post #10 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by doublediamond223 View Post
P12s do not match an SG ski....
They were the first binding that popped up when I searched e-bay. When I last did research, i.e. when I decided on the 490s, the runner-up was was a Look binding with a turntable heel. What bindings would you suggest? I'm not a big guy.
post #11 of 21
If you're really going to be moving at SG speeds , you should definitely be looking at P18/FKS180s, S916, and S900s.
post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Takecontrol618 View Post
If you're really going to be moving at SG speeds , you should definitely be looking at P18/FKS180s, S916, and S900s.
Ditto. Add the Atomic 1018 and the Tyrolia FR/FF17 as slightly inferior options.

What din do you ski at now, ghost?
post #13 of 21
Thread Starter 
When I was into pushing my luck I would crank them up to 11. I now ski at 7.5, though I've been contemplating 8 as I find myself very tempted to return to my old ways (maybe it's a good thing there are not long steep hills here). I have never had a problem with the 490s releasing prematurely, even at those low settings. In fact, to the best of my recollection the last time they released was many many years ago and had they not released I would quite likely have suffered two broken legs, but that's another story. There can be some violent up-down motions, but I don't put sideways forces on the bindings at all.
post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Takecontrol618 View Post
If you're really going to be moving at SG speeds , you should definitely be looking at P18/FKS180s, S916, and S900s.
The hills here aren't that big, so I won't be going very fast for very long, but I expect to be going around 50 - 60 mph for a few seconds every run, just long enough to get a couple of good turns in. Obviously, I won't be adjusting the binders on the fly to cover those seconds though.
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
The hills here aren't that big, so I won't be going very fast for very long, but I expect to be going around 50 - 60 mph for a few seconds every run, just long enough to get a couple of good turns in. Obviously, I won't be adjusting the binders on the fly to cover those seconds though.
DIN 8 AT 50 mph?!?!?!?!? : How are you still alive? I've pre-released at 10 and 11 on an icy course at a lower velocity.
post #16 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by doublediamond223 View Post
DIN 8 AT 50 mph?!?!?!?!? : How are you still alive? I've pre-released at 10 and 11 on an icy course at a lower velocity.
I give all the credit to my guardian angel.
No upwards toe release:
No markers:
post #17 of 21
Keep in mind that if you're just railing turns using the ski's natural radius while staying well centered you aren't putting that much force on a binding- almost all of your energy is being transmitted straight down to the binding. Its when you sart adding rotary movements at high speeds, like in a race course, that the forces really start to add up. That's what makes it possible to ski at a lower din at high speeds. The problem comes in when you have to make emergency moves or encounter variable snow conditions while moving at 50+ with a low din, and end up prereleasing straight into the woods.
post #18 of 21
Thread Starter 
I don't "steer" the skis as in pivot them. Many years ago I used to allow the snow to steer them a bit using edging and pressure control, but now I pretty much just slice and dice. I pretty much bend these skis to point the tips where I want to go and ski them where they're pointed. Sometimes I will get caught out and have to pivot them, but if so I do that with skis in the air, and am very careful setting them back down.

I have found with other skis (yard-sale wonders, rentals, and demos with dubious bindings), the only time bindings would release was when I've had to reset a line via a mid-air pivot and it was in slamming the edge back down on the snow at the new direction that the bindings would release, particularly if the surface was rough enough to bounce them up and down before the new edges had a chance to set, or if I had a hard landing.
post #19 of 21
Thread Starter 
Is the Atomic 614 any good?
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost View Post
Is the Atomic 614 any good?
We have had a ton of them on our race & rec skis. they work absolutly fine!!!! No problems!
post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by doublediamond223 View Post
DIN 8 AT 50 mph?!?!?!?!? : How are you still alive? I've pre-released at 10 and 11 on an icy course at a lower velocity.
Pre-Releas is seldom a binding or DIN issue. usually, you get light on a ski in the wrong part of the turn and it pings off or you are skidding through a turn get light on it (usualy get too much weight on the inside ski) and it gets ripped off by a track in a rut.

i don't care what your DIN is on, if you are not standing on your skis correctly at just the wrong time, no binding at any DIN will stay on. How do you explain World Cuppers pinging off skis with DIN on 18 or for instance a friend of mine personally saw Lasse Kjus skis they were on 24!!!

Bode has lost skis and the DIN goes to 18 on his bindings!

it is just like some light weight women I know have bent a lot of skis. when my older boy was 13 he bent or broke 7 pair of skis in race courses ofr training that year and only weighd maybe 125. some folk just stand on their skis different. '

The only tome I have ever prereleased is in a race course. it was my fault, got light on a ski.

Other wise freeskiing i can't remeber the last time i came out and I ski almost exclusively on Atomic's.
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