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Some "idle" thoughts on mounting position offset...

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
So, I just got my 183 cm Head iM82 mounted with the PX12 lifter bindings. I requested that they be center-mounted. When I got them home (actually already suspected this before I got home), I noticed that the boot-center on both skis/bindings was offset forward by 3.5-4.0 mm. Being the anal-retentive perfectionist, I wasn't too happy. I was thinking about taking them back to the shop even though it looked like they had really done a careful job otherwise even, apparently, marking the ski center with some white paint for visibility while installing - also seemed like they may have put sealant right at the screw mounting positions. Once I calmed down I started thinking more rationally about it, or was I just rationalizing...

First, they were both identical offsets - pretty hard to do just by chance I would think.  I also checked my Fluid PX12 binding setup (factory premounted "rails") on my Legend 8000s. I notice that those bindings positioned appropriately (using settings on the rails) for my 342mm boot sole length put the same boots about 3.5mm BEHIND the boot center marks on those 8000s.

So, I am wondering, even with all of the advanced technology, and ignoring potential human error, it would seem that an offset of 4 mm would have to be within the error of the positioning jigs and adjustments when mounting bindings. Does that seem reasonable? I think it is interesting to note this because many of the discussions on this forum seem to delight (no offense) on the necessity of moving mounting points forward or back 5 to 15 mm to get the most out of a pair of skis and specific ski technique/conditions.

The final realization - and which I would be interested in hearing opinions on - is this. The boot sole length mark on the boots is for exactly that, but it has nothing to do with the positioning of the foot in the boot. I have long feet (size 14.5) but very long toes. So, the ball of my foot could easily be 5 mm offset horizontally from someone else who uses the same boot but has a different shaped foot. Add to that the variability in positioning of the foot resulting from different orthotics and instep height and the 3.5-4 mm offset between boot and ski center does not seem critical - unless of course the natural ball of foot offset and the ski offset are in different directions culminating in an overall offset of 1 cm.  Yes, this is why I realize I have a "tendency" to be anal - I am a scientist too.

Perhaps I am just trying to rationalize a bad mount.... Ha Ha Ha. Any thoughts????
Will I notice anything?
OK..... I know what some of you will say..... "JUST SKI!!!!!"

Nick
post #2 of 6
I am no expert, but I do have three pair of skis (powder and all-mt.) mounted with changeable position bindings, and I've tried them is various positions.  IMO, since size, forward lean and stiffness of your boots, flex and sidecut of the skis, and individual body type and skiing style all contribute to the equation, the optimal fore/aft binding position is a very individual setting that can vary with snow conditions and terrain.  Bottom line, what you are talking about is a very minor issue that you will be able to easily compensate for if you are a decent skier.

If anything, the slight forward mount will make your skis initiate a turn with less effort.  If this is a problem you can de-tune the edges on the tips a little, or loosen your top boot buckle a little to soften the turn initiation.
post #3 of 6
I've got a couple of Railflex setups which allow +/- 15mm mounting adjustment. IMHO 4mm is pretty minor.  I certainly notice the difference between the +15 and -15 position but I'd just go with it. If after a while you feel they are too unstable maybe a rearward remount would be called for but I'd go much more than 4mm in that case.
post #4 of 6
some skis I intentionally mount forward more than that.

Are these set up for crud and variable, or deep pow? that's a factor with respect to tip float. unless you are going back for some sort of compensation, I would ski them and see how they feel. re-drilled, you'd have to move about a cm away from those holes to be safe.

I got new boots with a longer BSL so I'm about 2mm back on some of my skis. I don't think I'll notice. How old are your boots? that's another factor. for all you know your next boots will have a slightly different BSL.

good luck.
post #5 of 6
I know the answer .... you're nuts!

Seriously, if you said 3-4 "cm" I'd be a little ticked.  But 3-4 mm is not bad as long as the skis are consistent.  It's still surprising though; I do all my mounts with a paper template and the accuracy is basically a pencil lead thickness, so I'd expect a jig mount to be at least that good.  I guess it all comes down to the operator.

I will leave you with a final thought, and it's that the boot center on the iM82 is biased rearward quite a bit.  Too much for my tastes in fact.  You could probably mount these skis 1-2 cm forward and still be OK.  So if anything, going 3-4mm forward is a slight bonus.
post #6 of 6
I have had a pair of Snoop Daddy's mounted with Freeride bindings for a few years which I like a lot.  However, I don't feel quite as balanced on them (fore/aft) as I do on my Head Magnum SS or Atomic B5's (early season/rock skis).  The mounting positions relative to the other two skis (using center of running surface not the manufacturer's mark on the ski) is however within 5 mm or so of each other with the Head skis being back a bit and the B5's forward of the Snoop Daddys. I have increased the delta angle by taking out the toe piece spacer on the Freeride binding and this helped a bit.  However, I still think that if I moved the bindings forward a bit I would gain even better control of the skis.  I felt this way once before with a pair of Salomon Pocket Rockets and moved them forward about 1-1.5 centimeters and I was quite pleased.  I am thinking of trying the same with the Snoop Daddy's.

Out of this I would give few bits of advice: 
1) Use the center of the running surface for comparisons as opposed to the manufaturer's mark.  This mark is a judgement call by the manufacturer and probably has assumptions about skier type and ski characteristics that may or may not fit you.

2) If you can get a binding that allows you to readily modify the binding position.  The B5's Neox allows you to do this and in fact I have mine set up in a more forward position than the standard. 

3)  I think that the only way to really tell about binding position is by feel.  A Campbell balancer may be one way to go but it doesn't takes into account flex patterns or sidecut paramters.  I have a starting point of my current boot center, about 3 inches behind the center of the running surface for myself.  This works great for 2 of 3 skis and I'll have to wait to see if my "feelings" about the Snoop Daddy are correct.  Worst case is that I have the bindings moved forward and then have to put them back in the old holes (should be minimal or no cost to do that).  Either way, I don't think an extra set of holes is a big deal.
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