or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › Bindings - integrated vs non-integrated
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Bindings - integrated vs non-integrated

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Looking for clarity, 

I was walking thru a local ski shop this afternoon and the sales guy walks over and starts talking as I look - I picked up a ski that is a non integrated type and the sales guy goes on that off piste skis are typically non-integrated system (the ski I was holding at the time was the Salomon Enduro) - where if you want front side performance - integrated is the way to go. He started talking about flex patterns and the like. Now I wasn't sure if he was just blowing smoke or what - but as I looked across the wall - most (I say most, not all) of the skis that I would associate with a front side ski - had integrated systems and skis that I would say be a park or more of a off piste ski (Armada, Line, Salomon Enduro, Lord etc) were flat or non-integrated.

The question that I have - is this the case? Considering that my new skis (Sultan 85's) come with the Flex integrated or as a 'Flat' 

allowing me to mount a binding of my choice. Is this marketing or is there some other reason?

 

Just thought I would ask

 

Regards

Stephen

post #2 of 11

Yes this is the case. The system can enhance how the ski works. The reality though is that in Europe (which drives the ski market) people hardly buy skis anymore. It's all about the high-end demo and the integrated systems are a cleaner way of doing the "demo" thing.

post #3 of 11

The biggest advantage of the integrated binding systems is to allow some flex in the ski underfoot allowing easier cariving, edgehold and a bit more forgiveness.  Good traits for carving up the groomed on the front side.  That advantage isn't as important in deeper and softer snow where you aren't carivng as much as you are floating down the hill.

 

Personally I have been in love with Volkl/Marker's Motion system.  My current main board, the AC30 with IPT wideride integrated binding is the best combo I have ever encountered in my 40 years of skiing.  Fantastic response in all conditions with an uncanny ability to keep you centered on your skis.  Take it or his big brother the AC50 our on a demo day and see for yourself.

 

Rick G

post #4 of 11

This is a bunch of crap.  Sorry.

 

Integrated systems tout advantages, but they're really just a way for the manufacturers to lock you into their binding of choice.  You can buy free flexing bindings to mount on flat skis too.  For some people the integration provides simplicity which they value.  For me I much prefer to not be locked into the manufacturers choice of binding.

 

Also note that some integrated systems make it impossible to select your own fore/aft binding mount position which is a real problem for me.  There are some integrated systems though that make it easier to provide a custom mount position.  So it's really up to the consumer to consider their needs and educate themselves on the capabilities of the particular system in question.  The idea that integrated systems out perform other systems cannot be generalized across all integrated systems and bindings produced.

post #5 of 11

I agree with Noodler.

 

As I just posted a couple days ago I got burned by assuming the Marker M20 had enough lift to fit on the Volkl Racetigers without a plate.  I bought it over the Internet and had it mounted.  Now I am buying Marker Piston Plates (for another $200) to put in between the ski and binding.

 

Ironic thing is I would buy a lot more equipment (especially skis) if I did not have to keep up with all the integration options. Skid should be flat and bindings should have standard lift and devices that fit on all skis.  I think the industry had done this wrong - funny thing is that "back side skis" probably make up more of the sales than when these systems starting to appear.

 

Best development since I stopped racing 15 years back - rear entry boots have gone away after years of racers telling people they were horrible.  The worst is the integrated binding, lift, ski, combination that I don't have the time or wallet to keep up with.

 

If anyone thinks that improved performance is just coming from the "integration", rather than ski shapes, leverage, etc, I have some bridges to sell you in NYC.

post #6 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Moose32 View Post

I agree with Noodler.

 

As I just posted a couple days ago I got burned by assuming the Marker M20 had enough lift to fit on the Volkl Racetigers without a plate.  I bought it over the Internet and had it mounted.  Now I am buying Marker Piston Plates (for another $200) to put in between the ski and binding.

 

Ironic thing is I would buy a lot more equipment (especially skis) if I did not have to keep up with all the integration options. Skid should be flat and bindings should have standard lift and devices that fit on all skis.  I think the industry had done this wrong - funny thing is that "back side skis" probably make up more of the sales than when these systems starting to appear.

 

Best development since I stopped racing 15 years back - rear entry boots have gone away after years of racers telling people they were horrible.  The worst is the integrated binding, lift, ski, combination that I don't have the time or wallet to keep up with.

 

If anyone thinks that improved performance is just coming from the "integration", rather than ski shapes, leverage, etc, I have some bridges to sell you in NYC.


Butt your ski is NOT an integrated ski. You can choose to run a plate or not. You can choose to run a VIST plate with a  Look binding if you want. On the consumer Racetiger SL, you have a built in Marker binding plate system that you can't take off.

post #7 of 11

I love blanket statements. While I agree that some systems do hinder performance and limit movement in the ski, Elan Fusion is one of the worst that come to mind, there are very good ones out there like Blizzards IQ-Max system. The IQ-Max even allows you to put on your binding and even TYPE of binding of choice. The Blizzard and Volkl systems (with very similar bindings too) look alike but Blizzards works much more seamless. K2 along with some manufactures are also offering their skis two ways, both with a system and flat. The (magnificent) Salomon Enduro was to be offered both ways but Salomon decided to offer it just flat.

 

I agree that a good amount of the reason was for the manufacturer to create a larger sale by masking profit with the word performance and on some cases it worked but over the past few years the pendulum of wanting the choice of a binding is swinging back. last year I was just at 50% flat vs. system (which included entry level skis) at my old shop, at Start Haus we are well over 70% flat. 

post #8 of 11

I think the accurate question is whether any performance gain from an integrated system out weighs the performance gain from having a custom stand height & ramp angle/delta & cant (if under the binding)?  One obvious performance gain is in the margins of the big-box retailer, since there is little need for a big box store to stock an inventory of bindings & parts.  For example, if a Sports Chalet only sells integrated systems, they no longer need to spend $ training staff on all the binding options available (I was just in there buying a tarp), and they don't have to worry about the kid doing their mounting drilling holes in the wrong place.  This is a smart financial move on the part of Sport Chalet, but it also helps raise the value proposition of the quality ski shops that are capable of providing more optimal solutions to the skier.  How many skiers realize this is another matter.

 

Personally, I loved the old ESS-VARs because they taught me (at least with the boots that I used a zillion years ago) that the suggested manufacturer mounting point isn't optimal for every skier. If I ever demo skis from Philpug, you can be sure I'll play around with the fore/aft adjustment on the integrated or non-integrated bindings.


Edited by quant2325 - 10/24/10 at 7:55am
post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by quant2325 View Post

I think the accurate question is whether any performance gain from an integrated system out weighs the performance gain from having a custom stand height & ramp angle/delta & cant (if under the binding)?  One obvious performance gain is in the margins of the retailer, since there is little need for a big box store to stock an inventory of bindings & parts.  For example, if a Sports Chalet only sells integrated systems, they no longer need to spend $ training staff on all the binding options available (I was just in there buying a tarp), and they don't have to worry about the kid doing their mounting drilling holes in the wrong place.  This is a smart financial move on the part of Sport Chalet, but it also helps raise the value proposition of the quality ski shops that are capable of providing more optimal solutions to the skier.  How many skiers realize this is another matter.

 

Personally, I loved the old ESS-VARs because they taught me (at least with the boots that I used a zillion years ago) that the suggested manufacturer mounting point isn't optimal for every skier. 

 

First point should be made..where to shop, at ski shop that sells skis or a ski shop that sells tarps?

 

 

Other than the Nordica/Look boot/binding system, the first ski/binding combo that comes to mind for me was the short lived Tyrolia ski (yes ski)/binding combo. Anything before that? 


 

post #10 of 11

Not that I remember.  Hey, I usually buy tarps at Harbor Freight but I was in the neighborhood getting something for my wife at Target.  The Webolos Cub Scouts have some requirements to knock off in the rain today, and building a quick shelter is one of them.

post #11 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post

 last year I was just at 50% flat vs. system (which included entry level skis) at my old shop, at Start Haus we are well over 70% flat. 


Comparing the wall at Wicks in PA to Start Haus seems like an unfair comparison since you are selling more big soft snow skis which tend not to have integrated bindings. Do you think that there are less system skis on the wall at Wick's this year?

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 › Bindings - integrated vs non-integrated