EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Should a Novice Install FS11 RailFlex2 Bindings?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Should a Novice Install FS11 RailFlex2 Bindings?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
I did a search on these bindings and didn't quite find the info I was looking for...pardon me if I'm treading old ground here.
I just bought new Fischers online and they came with FS11 Railflex2 bindings. I stopped by my local ski shop (the only one left, and I sort of hate the place) and they wanted $60 to install the bindings. I only paid $30 for my last drilled bindings up by the ski areas, so I felt this was highly unreasonable.
So, if I want to use the skis this weekend, I have to install the bindings myself. They were advertised as not needing a shop install, but...I have never adjusted my own bindings in the slightest, or even looked really closely to see what's going on in there. I am an engineer (=like to take stuff apart) and reasonably mechanically inclined, but hardly a whiz at this stuff. I am proud of myself for remembering to bring a boot back home with me!


Given all this...would you recommend that I go ahead and try to put the bindings on, or will I end up really regretting it? I think that it is no problem to look up appropriate DIN settings...but, if anybody has any good recommendations for that, I'd appreciate that, too. 6'2", 225lbs, intermediate skier who is eager to try any run without moguls as long as there is SOME snow, ski on Eastern crap exclusively. The skis are 175cm Red Heats, in case that has any bearing on this.
post #2 of 22
Save your knees - get it done right. But $60 to do a Railflex install seems steep to me. I know that shops around here do those system installs for about $30 or so. I'd check with other shops .
post #3 of 22
My barometer for this is that if you have to ask, it's probably a bad idea to do it yourself. That said, a good hands-on engineer should be able to figure out RailFlex just by looking at it. It would help to have some experience with Tyrolia bindings in order to set the forward pressure properly.

Some shops charge more for a mount when you haven't purchased the gear there, which may be why they want $60, hard to say. They would certainly do a full on torque-test which is worth something even if the mount itself is trivial.
post #4 of 22
Check your pm.
post #5 of 22
Definitely install it yourself. I own railflex bindings. Actually, I have one pair of bindings for multiple skis, so I'm constantly mounting/unmounting them. They're so easy to install, a caveman could do it....

Read the manual - http://www.tyrolia.com/certification...al.english.pdf

The instructions are on page 27. DIN chart on page 65. Go to town.

Basically, there are numbers on the binding that correspond to your boot sole length. You just line up the numbers corresponding to your boot. Then you slide the binding forward onto the rails. Then you take a screwdriver and screw in the one screw in the middle. Set your din--all done!

If you have questions, just ask.

It's basically impossible to get it wrong, unless you're a complete moron (which I doubt you are, if you're into engineering)....
post #6 of 22
if a shop quoted me $60 to put a pair of railflex bindings on, i would never go to that shop again for anything. it takes 5 minutes. a drugged monkey could do it.
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrzinwin View Post
Basically, there are numbers on the binding that correspond to your boot sole length. You just line up the numbers corresponding to your boot. Then you slide the binding forward onto the rails. Then you take a screwdriver and screw in the one screw in the middle. Set your din--all done!
Aren't you leaving out a key step? Forward pressure? It would be real easy for a newbie to follow the instructions on page 27 and not know to do the rest (which is on a separate page).

I also see zillions of people mounting RF plates without a jig (because the plates serve as a template) but they forget to space the front and rear plates before marking the holes (the jig would do this spacing automatically). The end result not only kills the key benefit of RF, it goes to the other extreme by binding up the middle of the ski and impeding flex.

Quote:
It's basically impossible to get it wrong, unless you're a complete moron (which I doubt you are, if you're into engineering)....
I am all for DIY, but you still have to know all the steps, know to look for them in the manual, and know how to handle situations that occur when the proper training/tools is not available. And as an engineer, let me tell you that it's entirely possible for engineers to be morons who are dangerous to themselves and others. I realized that the first time we had a machine shop lab project in college and metal parts were flying out of lathes and milling machines like shrapnel... Many engineers don't have common sense or hands-on skills. Heck, I have an engineer neighbor who can't even fix his lawnmower.
post #8 of 22
If you know your DIN requirement they are easy to install yourself.
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier219 View Post
Aren't you leaving out a key step? Forward pressure? It would be real easy for a newbie to follow the instructions on page 27 and not know to do the rest (which is on a separate page).

I also see zillions of people mounting RF plates without a jig (because the plates serve as a template) but they forget to space the front and rear plates before marking the holes (the jig would do this spacing automatically). The end result not only kills the key benefit of RF, it goes to the other extreme by binding up the middle of the ski and impeding flex.



I am all for DIY, but you still have to know all the steps, know to look for them in the manual, and know how to handle situations that occur when the proper training/tools is not available. And as an engineer, let me tell you that it's entirely possible for engineers to be morons who are dangerous to themselves and others. I realized that the first time we had a machine shop lab project in college and metal parts were flying out of lathes and milling machines like shrapnel... Many engineers don't have common sense or hands-on skills. Heck, I have an engineer neighbor who can't even fix his lawnmower.
you're right--I forgot to mention forward pressure, although if you installed the bindings correctly, it shouldn't be a problem. But it's easy enough to check that it's within the scribed marks--doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure that out.

I also happen to be one of those people who mount RF plates myself. That's a bit tougher, although I think I've gotten the hang of it. And yes, I always remembered to leave that gap between the foward and rear plates (My biggest problem was with drilling technique and getting the holes exactly where I wanted them).

But honestly, installing the bindings onto the plates should not cost someone $60. It's fairly straightforward, and I would be comfortable teaching someone how to do it in 5 minutes.
post #10 of 22
Assuming that the rail itself is already mounted to the ski, you can do it yourself. If you're nervous, do it and then have it function checked at a shop, which shouldn't be more than $20.
post #11 of 22
RF boot sizes are ±5mm increments if I remember right (though you can play games for ±2.5). Forward pressure generally needs to be within ±2mm. So it's important to check/adjust forward pressure regardless of how easy the install is, or at the minimum, be aware that forward pressure is critical to binding function.
post #12 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by epl View Post
it takes 5 minutes. a drugged monkey could do it.
I can confirm this from personal experience.

RTFM, install yourself, and get a $10 - $20 release check for peace of mind before you ski. Should be able to do this at the rental shop or ski shop wherever you're skiing - faster and cheaper on the hill, and you sort of hate the local shop anyway.
post #13 of 22
Thread Starter 
OK, I'm going to take a shot at it.
If I feel uncomfortable at any point, I'll either cry for help or just take them to a shop.
Thanks for all the feedback, everybody!


I am DEFINITELY done with that shop. We used to have some choice of ski shops here, but so many have gone out of business (Ski Market just this year). I'm amazed that this is the one place that survived. They did mention that the price was high because I didn't buy the skis there...seemed offended that I had sullied their shop with "foreign" skis.
The other skiers I've talked to in the office had already given up on this place...one guy bought used race skis for his son, and one of the bindings fell apart at high speed on the first day of use. He brought the skis back to the shop, explained what happened, and politely asked for a new binding. He was told that he wasn't getting anything unless he had EVERY piece of the binding that had fallen apart, because they were going to put that binding on another ski.

I bought my daughter a jacket there a few months ago, and the people selling clothes were fine. They definitely pushed the pricier stuff, which is fine, and also what I bought. But, no more of that, either.
I didn't tell about the best part. After I got the $60 quote, I just said, "No thanks", picked up my stuff, and was leaving. The punk at the desk sneered, "What, are you going to do it YOURSELF?!?!!?"
I just replied, "I paid $30 for drilled bindings last spring up North, so maybe I'll go back there."
Response...
"Umm...oh."
post #14 of 22
Thread Starter 
Well, assembling the bindings was a piece of cake. Very simple and intuitive. I wasn't able to start until very late at night, but I was even able to "assemble while drowsy".
I did run into one snag. I didn't have a boot caliper (or even a metric tape measure that I could find ), so I just used the boot length printed on the sole (349mm...yes, I am a Sasquatch). Set up the bindings for 350mm, and I was able to get the boot in there, although it seemed like I had to push very hard. But, then I couldn't even see the scribed marks to judge the forward pressure...I was going nuts looking for them, then figured that the sizing must be way off. This must be why the instructions said to measure the boots with calipers instead of just reading the size off the boots!!
I'm going to try resetting the bindings at 355mm, maybe more if I can get a good reading on the actual boot length and it looks like even more than that. If things still don't look right, I'll probably punt and ask a shop up in the Whites to tweak them for me. I guess if I need more than 360mm, I'm going to have to buy parts somewhere...that's as long as it goes with what I have.

I noticed that somebody mentioned you can adjust the boot sizes in 2.5mm increments...is this by making the front/rear readings not match? As in, one at 355mm and the other at 350mm?
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtus_Probi View Post
I just used the boot length printed on the sole
Which is what I've always done, and I suspect that the majority of shop techs do as well. When you're working in 5mm increments, a +/- of 1mm or so isn't likely to make a difference.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtus_Probi View Post
I couldn't even see the scribed marks to judge the forward pressure...
I'd take the boot out and make sure that the forward pressure setting is at its lightest (furthest out) position, then try again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtus_Probi View Post
I noticed that somebody mentioned you can adjust the boot sizes in 2.5mm increments...is this by making the front/rear readings not match? As in, one at 355mm and the other at 350mm?
Yes.
post #16 of 22
Here's something I always found interesting regarding bindings and the need to have binding installations done by a trained binding technician and all the installation detail and adjustments that are critical, and I believe its probably prudent to leave this work to the professionals. I don't follow that rule, and accept that if I screw up I deserve to suffer the consequences. Anyway, I forget the name of the book but it was published about 10 years ago and chronicled a year on the US downhill ski team. Anyway, one of the racers wanted to try another downhillers skis out on a training run and his boots were a good bit smaller than the other guys and he didn't want to readjust the bindings, so he took a piece of plastic and wedged it between the heel of his boot and the heel piece to take up the space and ran the course!

What's up with that! So much for fixating on the last mm of adjustment!
post #17 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quick question on the DIN table...I would assume that weight should take precedence over height on the left side of Tyrolia table (for example)? I fit into the 210lbs+ category at 225lbs, but that matched up to 6'5"+ in height in the next column, and I'm about 6'2". I figured that weight was more important and kept myself in the "M" code for 210lbs+.
I would also assume that somebody who weighs, say, 300lbs should probably get a pro to help them pick their binding settings instead of just going with 210lbs+??
post #18 of 22
You are supposed to use whichever factor results in a lower DIN. So drop into L based on your height. That is for a type I skier. Move down one row for a type II skier, or down two rows for type III. If the skier is less than 10 years of age or greater than 50 years of age, move up one row.

EDIT: just follow the instructions in the tech manual under the chart -- it's all there.
post #19 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by skier219 View Post
You are supposed to use whichever factor results in a lower DIN. So drop into L based on your height. That is for a type I skier. Move down one row for a type II skier, or down two rows for type III. If the skier is less than 10 years of age or greater than 50 years of age, move up one row.

EDIT: just follow the instructions in the tech manual under the chart -- it's all there.
Thanks, I missed that. I did count myself as a type II and adjust based on that. Guess I'll dial the DIN back a bit.
Years of reading wordy tech reports that have all the info you really want in graphs, photos, and tables have taught me to skip most of the text and find the meat...probably a bad habit for this application.
post #20 of 22
If your boot is 349, then 350 should work just fine. You should be able to see the scribed marks at all times--they're located at the back of the binding. If you can't see the scribed marks, then you're not looking in the right place--it has nothing to do with the boot.

Before you even put the boot in, find the scribed marks and look for the plastic housing of the binding. You should see that the plastic is located in front of the scribed marks. Once you insert your boot, the plastic should be located within the scribed marks. That's how it works.
post #21 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrzinwin View Post
If your boot is 349, then 350 should work just fine. You should be able to see the scribed marks at all times--they're located at the back of the binding. If you can't see the scribed marks, then you're not looking in the right place--it has nothing to do with the boot.

Before you even put the boot in, find the scribed marks and look for the plastic housing of the binding. You should see that the plastic is located in front of the scribed marks. Once you insert your boot, the plastic should be located within the scribed marks. That's how it works.
I started to suspect the "moron engineer" factor this morning after looking at the photos in the manual again. I have to plead "midnight madness", since that's when I was doing this work.

Thanks for the tips, hopefully I'll get this all cleared up tonight.
post #22 of 22
Thread Starter 
OK, I figured it out.
I somehow attached the brakes to the toe parts of the bindings, and then mounted them both on the bottoms of the skis.



Didja really believe me?!?!?


Actually, I looked too closely at the manual pages I printed out from the link above and not closely enough at the pictograms in the binding instructions. My bindings don't have a scribed piece of metal at the back, but a piece of plastic with a "safe zone" indicated by a change in depth and texture. Both of my bindings are in the safe zone with a boot in them, although they are a tad different from each other...a bit odd, since I tried to set them both up for 350mm. Maybe I got an inadvertent 2.5mm shift when I snapped the lock down on one of them?

Anyway, I think that they're good to go, although I would still like to have them tested. Should be up in Waterville on Sunday...I'll only have one ski day this weekend due to Xmas prep time, and Saturday looks a mite cold. Might be getting some fresh snow while we're skiing Sunday, too!!

Thanks to all, and happy skiing!!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ski Gear Discussion
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Should a Novice Install FS11 RailFlex2 Bindings?