OK, I have messed around with AT for a few years using some very used stuff I picked up cheap, or borrowed. I am looking toward upgrading. Here's the deal: I do an increasing amount of hiking to sidebounds terrain. But not a bunch of actual skinning so far. (That will increase only if I go for much lighter equipment overall.) Two years ago, I nearly bought it trying to navigate some rock bands wearing Alpine boots. Decided hiking required AT with some actual rubber and a walk mode. OTOH, I am not fond of AT bindings, although my experience is limited to Fritschi's and a few runs on a Duke. Former felt wobbly, latter was solid but massive, didn't like stand height or total weight. And neither seem very safe for knees; they're waay back to the future in terms of design. (Realize limitations of something you can walk in, just sayin') So I'm thinking how great it would be to have a boot I can hike in but my existing alpine setups. Not to mention cheaper than buying out a shop.
So it's time to do something really stupid and futile. My questions:
1) Can any AT boots be used with the full Vibram soles in Alpine bindings? I know they're not officially recommended, assume that is because the AFD won't work so well with the sole and/or the toe height is off. But has anyone tried this? And survived?
2) If I go with a heavier replaceable toe/heel block design, like the Factor etc., will the AT (rather than DIN) setup work in an Alpine binding? (Idea here is that it has more plastic on the sole and a fairly flat toe.)
I have a feeling I'm gonna be stuck with a Duke/Baron/whatever and hybrid AT boot, but hoping otherwise.