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Purchasing a KneeBinding???? - Page 2

post #31 of 136
If the company is successfull in producing an effcient and proven technology that 'significantly' reduces ACL injuries, when other manufactuers have tried but claim this is technically impossible given the dynamics of skiing and the nature of the ski/binding/skier interface , then they certanly are going to make a lot of money and have an eventual monopoly.

It's one thing to create a binding that releases laterally as intended in the lab when the bidning is attached to a static device and forces are applied. It's another thing to have a real live skier attached, with moving parts that bend, compress, twist, and sheer. I thik this is what all the manfuactuers have been saying.

The real world test comes on the hill, not the lab.

I am not disparaging the product as I have never used it and have no data or stats to go by. I am just obviously a bit skpetical as everyone else has been syaing this is impossible. It is going to take some time to really judge the real-world efficacy of the binding in 'significantly' reducing ACL injuries. Lab Testing, Strength Testing, and Vermont Calibrators cannot substitue for real-world experience out on the hills.
post #32 of 136
Has anyone tried these bindings yet? If so, what is your impression so far. I'm considering mounting a pair on my new Christmas skis.
post #33 of 136
I have to say I agree with Mojoman here. These just sound to good to be true. No pre-release, great ski interface, and it reduces ACL injuries. I'm pretty skeptical about their claims.

I have yet to see any real data that proves these claims. I know the manufacturer has claimed to have great lab results but, they're the manufacturer. I am not saying their claims are impossible but highly unlikely. It would be nice if they're accurate and could be a real benefit to lots of skiers. But show me the numbers!
post #34 of 136

KneeBinding Article in the NY Times:

http://travel.nytimes.com/2008/12/26...6ski.html?8dpc
post #35 of 136
Thread Starter 
I had my KneeBindings mounted today in Stowe. I brought them home and checked them out. They are superlight and the build is similar to my Geze bindings of the past, even down to the slight sqeak when you adjust the tension at the heel. The bindings are definitely made with high tech materials with the plastics and metals seeming to be bullet proof. The construction is simple and seems to have a "no-nonsense" feel.........I tested in the house and can get the bindings to consistently release in all directions including the heel w/o snafus.

I am very happy that they are "Made in Vermont" as spending locally supports the economy of our small state. Call it a VT pride thing but keeping our cash local is major positive point and keeps people in our community employed.....this state is currently really hurting for jobs..... as for the price, I don't mind paying extra to keep our community going........

I'll give a thorough on the hill report as soon as we get some snow. The rain turned this place into an ice rink......my girfriend and I were joking that we can ice skate to work now.....the rain took out the snow, the hills are now a mess......we need some serious snow
post #36 of 136
Yo..yo,

Where did you get them mounted?

What did you mount them on?

Please post a full review in the gear review section.
post #37 of 136
post #38 of 136
Thread Starter 
-Mounted on a set of Mantras, my primary everyday ski.
-Purchased and mounted at Pinnacle on the Mtn rd. Usually have my work done by PJ and Piper @ Race Stock over in Waterbury and Edgewise in the lower village but Pinnacle had the goods and did a wonderful job....I was headed to see Benny at Inner Bootworks anyway to get some work done for a buddy from NYC......
-I'll post a full review in the gear review after I've skied on them for 5-10 days.
-I'm new here and not sure how the picture post setup works. On Hardcore Sledder I could post directly from my computer....I can't do that here so not sure how the setup works.......also I live in the sticks and all we have here is dial-up (my area was skipped by Fairpoint) so photos are tough to work with.
post #39 of 136
Very interesting; thank you Rick Howel esp. for posting such detailed comments.

I've looked at the youtube vids which are very interesting
esp. http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=1sH7Y68v6bE&NR=1
which contains video in an engineering lab showing how the binding was tested. Really interesting.

Two questions please:
1.I don't understand however why the binding only laterally releases to one side: why not both ? surely a force in the phantom foot zone, in the "-ve" direction; could produce a similarly dangerous torque in the knee just with "anti clockwise" sense: but if I understand this correctly, the binding will not release? Why has this not been designed into the binding?

I'm sure there's a really good reason, as Rick clearly thought really hard about this: but it would be interesting to understand.

2.What is the full list of "conventional" binding release modes that the system performs ? esp. does the binding have an upward toe release, that is missing on many "old school" bindings?

Thank you for being so open with technical info Rick. I wish all binding manufacturers/designers were. What you've written in this thread has enormously enriched my understanding of what a binding has to do.
post #40 of 136

I am an expert skier and have had the past 19 of my 33 ski days so far this season on Kneebindings in NH (mostly WV). I have had NO pre-releases skiing all terrain in all conditions at normal DIN settings. I did have one bad collision on steep terrain (hit from behind) in which I was very briefly knocked unconscious, and both of my skis released properly and the brakes worked very well keeping my skis nearby. My injuries were just bumps and bruises from the physical contact, a chipped tooth, and a very slight concussion (thankfully I was wearing a helmet). After a couple minutes I skied away from this shunt, and continued skiing that day. Obviously, I had NO knee injuries or bone breaks. My wife and sister-in-law are also skiing on these bindings with NO pre-releases and NO injuries.

post #41 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmblur View Post
It would need to be tested and proven more, with careful analysis done on cadavers and actual ski injuries (as much as is possible) in addition to FEA simulations of ACL/MCL/LCL failure before I'll buy the claim that it can help reduce injuries. In theory it seems like a likely failure mechanism for ACLs, but I'd need to see the data without it going through the marketing buffing machine or at least have a preponderance of real-world data ("10000 knee binding skier-days, 1 ACL injury, average for the year being 12/10000" for example).

This pretty much sums it up. IMO there are some proven designs out there that appear to be slightly more knee friendly than others (I like Tyrolia and Marker for this particular issue) but others hate them precisely because knee friendly bindings may release sooner than than an aggressive expert wants). And they are about half this price even at peak season. In truth, there's only so much a binding can do, especially as far as soft tissue injuries. Lessons probably reduce your risk a lot more. 


Edited by beyond - Mon, 02 Feb 09 18:23:33 GMT
post #42 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by beyond View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by jmblur View Post
It would need to be tested and proven more, with careful analysis done on cadavers and actual ski injuries (as much as is possible) in addition to FEA simulations of ACL/MCL/LCL failure before I'll buy the claim that it can help reduce injuries. In theory it seems like a likely failure mechanism for ACLs, but I'd need to see the data without it going through the marketing buffing machine or at least have a preponderance of real-world data ("10000 knee binding skier-days, 1 ACL injury, average for the year being 12/10000" for example).

This pretty much sums it up. IMO there are some proven designs out there that appear to be slightly more knee friendly than others (I like Tyrolia and Marker for this particular issue) but others hate them precisely because knee friendly bindings may release sooner than than an aggressive expert wants). And they are about half this price even at peak season. In truth, there's only so much a binding can do, especially as far as soft tissue injuries. Lessons probably reduce your risk a lot more. 


Edited by beyond - Mon, 02 Feb 09 18:23:33 GMT

 

Yea, there is only so much you can do.

It is good to hear the industry focusing on this now instead of just putting out a product.

The tyrolia design really helped my crash, the binding performed and sliped out sideways. Though, they might have been set a bit to high for me, but by design, I am walking like I should with just some tendon swelling. A product like this would be great for a skier like me, however the price tag is not.
 

post #43 of 136
Deleted per court order.

Edited by rick howell - 4/2/2009 at 09:02 pm
post #44 of 136

Update on my Kneebinding Experience

 

21 ski days on Kneebindings (of my 35 total ski days so far this season), and well over 1/2 million vertical feet, by an expert skier in all conditions and on all terrain. Still NO pre-releases, NO knee injuries, NO bone breaks, just GREAT skiing!

post #45 of 136
Deleted per court order.

Edited by rick howell - 4/2/2009 at 09:03 pm
post #46 of 136

Update on my Kneebinding Experience

 

25 ski days on Kneebindings (of my 39 total ski days so far this season), by an expert skier in all conditions and on all terrain. Still NO pre-releases, NO knee injuries, NO bone breaks, just GREAT skiing!

 

Footnote: This is purely my personal experience, so please see it as such. My personal experience should not be viewed as a statistical analysis since it's a small sample size, nor an explanation of how/why the thing works (as I could only guess and would be wrong by guessing). I am merely a paying customer that knows how to ski really well, and is actively using these things. I have attempted to report my personal user experience here in the event anyone is interested, and am sorry if my positive experience so far seems to upset some people.

post #47 of 136
Deleted per court order.

Edited by rick howell - 4/2/2009 at 09:03 pm
post #48 of 136

 Rick - if i may ask, what bindings are you personally skiing on right now?

post #49 of 136
Quote:
Footnote: This is purely my personal experience, so please see it as such. My personal experience should not be viewed as a statistical analysis since it's a small sample size, nor an explanation of how/why the thing works (as I could only guess and would be wrong by guessing). I am merely a paying customer that knows how to ski really well, and is actively using these things. I have attempted to report my personal user experience here in the event anyone is interested, and am sorry if my positive experience so far seems to upset some people.

 

Your positive experience is in no way upsetting. 

 

However, based on your n of 1 sample size - and your completely anecdotal experience - the outcomes you mention re. no injuries are completely irrelevant.  Your 'study' (LOL) is, to say the least, inadequately powered to make any conclusions .

 

post #50 of 136
Thread Starter 

Chris this is interesting.........three sets of the Kneebinders, that is 12 sets of AFD's on 6 skis (you , wife and sis) and none have come off..........even the manufacturer admitted this problem to me...........one came off every time I skied......and I could peel the AFD's up with my blunt fingernail.....and you're not even curious about that?.....hmmmmm?

post #51 of 136

Kneebinding has some 'mid-stream' production updates, the rear AFD is now being replaced by a plastic cap...

 

The front AFD's require exact toe height adjustments to stay on... err, yeah right, that's the problem, techs aren't adjusting toe height correctly causing AFDs to fall off... sure.

 

I think the binding has promise, it just needs some time to be refined (and the brakes suck, sorry Rick but they could be better and for $500 they NEED to be better than a $79 kids binding brake).

post #52 of 136

Nice try Rick, but no I am unfortunately for you not a puppet for anyone else. As far as Stockli Laser SLs go it was the only FLAT slalom ski I could find, and the men's length is 166cm. My tech couldn't mount the Kneebindings on my old Dynastar Slalom skis as the holes in their race plates wouldn't cooperate with the mounting jig, otherwise I wouldn't have replaced those skis. WRT my use of the english language - what can I say but I use it the way I was taught to, and I don't believe I've used it improperly.

 

Others: I bought 5 sets of these bindings (3 for my 66, 75, and 82mm wides, and 2 for my wife and sister-in-law's 75 wides) and all the brakes work fine after a couple days "breaking-in" and a little grease/vaseline during the "break-in" period. There is now an update to a part of the brakes that eliminates this "break-in period", but ours are already broken in and work fine so we have no need for that. BTW, the first hour I was on the Stokes I got whacked on steep terrain, both skis released, and the brakes worked just fine and kept the skis close-by (with minimal break-in). Let's talk about AFDs, if you're losing toe AFDs I think your toepiece height is set too high. Since my race tech began using his normal toepiece height adjustment method ours are just fine, they stay on and NEVER fall off. On the heel AFDs, my wife and sister in law haven't lost a one, though I've lost a few skiing in bumps and trees. I haven't felt a need to say this this before for two reasons: First, I have been assured by the company that the heel rest has been re-designed with some different slippery plastic, eliminating the separate stick-on heel AFD altogether, and has passed some critical testing in Germany in its new Teflon-free configuration. Furthermore, I was assured we will receive the new heel part as soon as they're available. In essence, I consider the heel AFD obsolete, and old history. Second, in the meanwhile as we're waiting for the updated heel part, the company has generously supplied us a bag of stick-on replacement AFDs - which just peel and stick-on easier than a postage stamp. I guess it's a minor inconvenience to occasionally stick-on a new one while I wait for the new heel part that eliminates them altogether, but an inconvenience I'm certainly willing to endure for even a slightly improved degree of ACL protection through the lateral heel release feature I cannot get with my other bindings. I'm not a binding expert but it seems logical to me that not having a heel AFD in place (e.g., say it just fell off when the ski bent on the last bump) on a lateral heel release binding is still safer for my knees than my Marker and Looks that have NO lateral heel release feature at all. Speaking of inconvenience, all of this AFD drivel is in my mind totally insignificant compared to the "inconvenience" I experienced last year rupturing my ACL, having ACL reconstruction surgery and then 6 months of rehab PT, an injury that occurred while I was using Looks. No thanks, I'm not going back to the status quo in bindings until the Kneebinding company tells me to return them. I did indeed call and ask them about this after seeing Rick's scary comments, and they told me it was absolutely safe to keep skiing on them, and updated parts would be forthcoming. So ski on them I will...

post #53 of 136

You can say what you will Chris but AFD's falling off IS a big deal. And I'm not so sure the 'replacement' heel piece cover instead of the AFD is a step in the right direction. They will not be seeing any of my skiing gear $$$'s any time soon, that's for sure. Add to that the fragile nature of the adjusting screws and the ski brake issues and I can only see an undeveloped product using the PAYING public to do the R&D.....bad idea.

 

I do like the idea behind this product but rushing it to market before it's truely ready may be the death of them....time will tell.

post #54 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by CHRISfromRI View Post

   

Let's talk about AFDs, if you're losing toe AFDs I think your toepiece height is set too high. Since my race tech began using his normal toepiece height adjustment method ours are just fine, they stay on and NEVER fall off. On the heel AFDs, my wife and sister in law haven't lost a one, though I've lost a few skiing in bumps and trees.

 

I haven't felt a need to say this this before for two reasons: First, I have been assured by the company that the heel rest has been re-designed with some different slippery plastic, eliminating the separate stick-on heel AFD altogether, and has passed some critical testing in Germany in its new Teflon-free configuration. Furthermore, I was assured we will receive the new heel part as soon as they're available. In essence, I consider the heel AFD obsolete, and old history.

 

Second, in the meanwhile as we're waiting for the updated heel part, the company has generously supplied us a bag of stick-on replacement AFDs - which just peel and stick-on easier than a postage stamp. I guess it's a minor inconvenience to occasionally stick-on a new one while I wait for the new heel part that eliminates them altogether, but an inconvenience I'm certainly willing to endure for even a slightly improved degree of ACL protection through the lateral heel release feature I cannot get with my other bindings. I'm not a binding expert but it seems logical to me that not having a heel AFD in place (e.g., say it just fell off when the ski bent on the last bump) on a lateral heel release binding is still safer for my knees than my Marker and Looks that have NO lateral heel release feature at all. Speaking of inconvenience, all of this AFD drivel is in my mind totally insignificant compared to the "inconvenience" I experienced last year rupturing my ACL, having ACL reconstruction surgery and then 6 months of rehab PT, an injury that occurred while I was using Looks. No thanks, I'm not going back to the status quo in bindings until the Kneebinding company tells me to return them. I did indeed call and ask them about this after seeing Rick's scary comments, and they told me it was absolutely safe to keep skiing on them, and updated parts would be forthcoming. So ski on them I will...

 

Your post really says it all.

 AFD's falling off is not insignificant at all.  Bindings just don't work properly without afd's - I don't care what the company told you.  Talk about studies! Probably the one easy thing they know from studies is the importance of the afd device.  It's about the easiest thing to test - don't even need skiers!

I've yet to see any study that calls anything to do with an AFD "drivel". Quite the opposite in fact.

The fact that you are given afd's to put on "like postage stamps" is really stunning. For a product that needs to work right to work at all this is terrible and irresponsible. 

The amazing thing is that it actually has little to do with the actual mechanics of the binding.  Yet they're sinking the whole ship by having faulty afd's. It's actually a shame. Investors in that company should be pissed.

 

Congratulations on being a binding tester!  You can count me out though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rossi Smash View Post

 

You can say what you will Chris but AFD's falling off IS a big deal. And I'm not so sure the 'replacement' heel piece cover instead of the AFD is a step in the right direction. They will not be seeing any of my skiing gear $$$'s any time soon, that's for sure. Add to that the fragile nature of the adjusting screws and the ski brake issues and I can only see an undeveloped product using the PAYING public to do the R&D.....bad idea.

 

I do like the idea behind this product but rushing it to market before it's truely ready may be the death of them....time will tell.

^^^Totally agree with this!!!

This binding right now is a complete disaster.  Obviously it has potential, but I'm shocked that they are having the general public do their testing for them.  I can't see a shop touching these things for awhile, if ever.

post #55 of 136
Thread Starter 

I was told by the manufacturer in their shop while checking my skis and boots, that my toepiece was adjusted correctly. The boot needs to be firmly pressed down on to the toe AFD. This was the case and mine still came off.  I was given 4 extra AFD's for my toes but was told that the glue will only stick if both the  plastic of the binding and the teflon pieces are warm.........Stop in the lodge warm my skis in-between runs?........What if it comes off at the top of a gnarly cornice, chute or gulley? You've hiked up, it comes off during the hike or an earlier run you're at the top with a busted binding and the glue won't stick? .........simply unacceptable.........the field testing was inadequate..........

 

 

 

I had my heel upgraded to the new plastic design......It is not a slippery plastic. It is the same plastic that the rest of the heel piece is made of. In fact it is not a smooth piece of plastic at all. It had a set of channels w/ holes for screws and grooves, unless they did a second redesign on the heel..............Why did they redesign the heel in the first place?........Because they knew there was a flaw in the AFD setup...........so why was this released to the public prior to the redesign?............this entire ordeal could have been avoided with some real world testing prior to public release..........

 

Again kudos to Kneebinding for braving this territory, but they should have crossed their T's and dotted their I's........especially the issue of the plastic stripping on the heel adjustment screw...........

post #56 of 136
Quote:
Originally Posted by rick howell View Post

 
(3)Toe piece design. Do you think that with my background in ski bindings this toe piece is anything but the best? The design of the KneeBinding toe has one of the finest pedigrees of any binding – having been originally invented by Coberlini (former Cober bindings of Italy), (patent expired long ago); then refined by Geze in many models over 20 years; then refined, in part, by Rossignol in many bindings over 15 years. This toe is minimal, solid, robust, light, durable and is long-proven to provide great release, retention and edge-control in the harshest skiing environments. The KneeBinding refinement of this toe includes the use of solid stainless steel components, engineering grade resins that are far stronger than any binding in use today by any other ski binding company (including super-cold, super-dry conditions); and an AFD that generates super edge-control (due to its extreme width and straight front edge) and which provides the flattest ASTM forward-release-envelope of any binding, ever (thank you Gordon Lipe and Gene Bahniuk). The KneeBinding toe also utilizes pure virgin (and thick) DuPont Teflon rather than a mechanical AFD. Teflon has the advantage over mechanical AFD’s because when a mechanical AFD is severely contaminated and highly-used it can go to “catastrophic failure” (completely blocking release during major forward-twisting falls), whereas Teflon provides predictably good release even after years and years of heavy use (though all AFD’s should be visually inspected and replaced if obvious wear or damage exists).

 

Well-performing AFD’s also play a major role in mitigating twist-pre-release, because a predictable, low-friction interface between the ski and boot is at the heart of rapid recentering (retention should be based as much on the spring as possible, and as minimally as possible on friction -- in order to maximize the recentering energy that a ski-boot-binding system can supply to hold them together during high “disturbing” forces that enter the system from the skiing environment …. though no toe piece design, no level of release setting and no AFD can overcome poor skiing technique when the skier self-induces high twist loads that are not a component of controlled skiing. Good skiers with good technique don’t need high toe settings – whereas forward release settings in the heel are a different story that we’ll discuss some other day.)

 

What happened to the thick pure virgin Dupont teflon afd of the design?

post #57 of 136
Deleted per court order.

Edited by rick howell - 4/2/2009 at 09:04 pm
post #58 of 136

Does anyone else out there have 25 ski days on Kneebindings? If not, and you've been on them, what have you got?

 

Also one other note that may be of interest: I spent several hours skiing the day before yesterday with one of the PSIA East Div Examiners, and we both happen to have the same size boot sole lengths, so we stepped into each other's skis/bindings for a good number of runs. It's always good fun to drive test something different! We both skied well on varied terrain, and he obviously skis even better than I do. We skied a lot of runs over those several hours and both liked my Monsters/Kneebindings combo, had no pre-releases, lost no AFDs, and had no issues with the brakes. Could it be that better skiers just don't have these problems to any significant degree - or is it that that the people here that are having problems are inflating them while they try to damage the good and building reputation of the best/only product out there that is attempting to reduce the current ACL rupture epidemic - as they themselves endeavor to protect the status quo in bindings that they may have some personal or financial interest in? WRT to Rick, I'm thinking he's just currently got an axe to grind.

post #59 of 136
Thread Starter 

15 - 20 days on the Knee bindings here..............it could have been more as I ski 60 + days per year and no longer keep count.............

 

When you report no problems w/ the binding and then in a later post report that you have been carrying around a bag of AFD's ...........What are we supposed to believe?

 

Anyone of us who skis, knows that an AFD problem is serious enough to report in a review. This is an open forum and we want to hear ALL the facts.


Edited by Yo Momma - 2/17/2009 at 09:07 pm
post #60 of 136
Deleted per court order.

Edited by rick howell - 4/2/2009 at 09:05 pm
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