UKC

Touring binding advice

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 R1gger 17 Jan 2021

Hi guys just looking for some advice. Just gettiing back into ski touring and i've bought a pair of Atomic BC 100 but, as i was unsure how i'd get on after 20 yesrs and to reduce the initial set up costs, i've had my old Silvretta 404s mounted on them so i can use them with my Scarpa Denali XTs. I've been out a couple of times now and really enjoyed it so i'm looking at the next stage of upgrade and thought about new bindings that could still take my Denalis. However, as they have no pin holes I appear to be limited to frame bindings or buying new boots and bindings (£££).

Anyone get advice, other than bite the bullet  

Many thanks

In reply to R1gger:

Bite the bullet,indeed...I got a price the other week to have shift bindings put on my skis..which are probably not ideal for touring..atomic vantages,little heavy...£450..ouch.

And then I want a new mtb...Happy days.

In reply to R1gger:

Not really much point in shelling out £450+ on a modern set of skis to use with nearly 20 year old boots. Just take the hit and get some tech bindings and boots, the backland are such lightweight skis it would be a shame to loose that benefit with a set of frame bindings. 

 daWalt 17 Jan 2021
In reply to R1gger:

one thing to consider.

if you're going to de-mount you classic bindings, the holes might get in the way in relation to where you want to screw your new shinny bindings.

once you've decided on a favored bit of kit, you should (hopefully) be able to get a template / layout info of some sort (or even borrow a jig) to allow you see where the drill-holes would go.

should always be possible to mount theme somewhere / somehow, perhaps not in the ideal position. this might just tip the balance between options - just don't ask me what clearance you need to leave between old & new drill holes.......

 HammondR 17 Jan 2021
In reply to R1gger: As pointed out above, you need to go the whole hog. The materials advances in touring boot manufacturer has enabled the development of boots which will outperform your Denalis on the way down and save you about a pound in weight on each foot. And if buying new boots there is no reason not to buy pin bindings (if you are predominantly touring rather than using the lifts). 

If you do go for new boots the key is finding a reputable boot fitter with a wide range from different manufacturers. Don't expect discount from a good shop. They will spend a lot of time selecting the best boot for your feet, your build and skiing ability. And then tuning the fit. 

Your choice of binding may be limited by a hole clash with the Silvrettas. Consult someone like Jon Coster at the Piste Office near Nottingham. What he doesn't know about bindings and their installation isn't worth knowing.

Good skis the Bentchetlers. 

 top cat 18 Jan 2021
In reply to R1gger:

?upgrade your 404 to 505.   Holes will match and there are some improvement s, most notably the pivot point for touring.

 critter 20 Jan 2021
In reply to R1gger:

Ditto John Costner @ Piste Office regarding bindings.

Unless your going very light, with an emphasis on height gained / distance travelled I would highly recommend the Salomon / Atomic Shifts.

Pin on the way up - alpine binding on the way down.

 kevin stephens 20 Jan 2021
In reply to R1gger:

I also recommend Jon Costner

i did all my skiing in Scarpa Denalis for a few years. It’s only when I moved to more modern boots that I realised how much the Denalis held me back.

i use Dynafit Radical 2 bindings (now called rotation) which have been great on and off piste, releasing when they need to and staying on when the need to. However if I was buying again I’d have a serious look at the Shifts

In reply to R1gger:

I will get burnt at the stake for what I am about to type. Oh well.

If you are not doing multiday hut to hut trips, there is nothing wrong with frame bindings. Depending on your tastes, balance on/off piste, balance uphill/downhill, preference, fitness and a myriad of other things, makes such as Marker or Fritschi still have frame bindings kicking around for sale that could be good for you. I had frame bindings then switched to Dynafit Vertical TLT pin bindings. They were a pain in the arse from day one until I sold them.

Post edited at 22:22
2
 facet 20 Jan 2021
In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

Burn.... Only joking. Yeah pin bindings can be a pain in the ass, but do save lots of weight! 

I still prefer my fritchi freeride for scotland day skiing/touring. Bomb proof, easy in/out but a bit heavier. 

In reply to facet:

Am Fritschi frame all the way!

 crayefish 20 Jan 2021
In reply to critter:

I didn't know about these types of binding.  Looks pretty interesting!  Would have definitely have gone for them if I didn't have the frame bindings on my Soul 7s when I bought them from a friend.

 top cat 21 Jan 2021
In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

> I will get burnt at the stake for what I am about to type. Oh well.

> If you are not doing multiday hut to hut trips, there is nothing wrong with frame bindings. Depending on your tastes, balance on/off piste, balance uphill/downhill, preference, fitness and a myriad of other things, makes such as Marker or Fritschi still have frame bindings kicking around for sale that could be good for you. I had frame bindings then switched to Dynafit Vertical TLT pin bindings. They were a pain in the arse from day one until I sold them.

This is spot on.  Pin bindings win hands down on paper but are fing awful in serious Scottish conditions.  Good luck getting them to out perform frame bindings in any aspect other than a bit of energy saving going uphill.

One multi day snowhole trip and my pins were off the ski and sold on..........

Two week trip in Norway, 12 people , 8 types of bindings.  Only the two on pins had issues....

ymmv, but I doubt it.

(Pins work fine on good snow when the sun is shining and all is tickity boo with the world)

 galpinos 21 Jan 2021
In reply to nickinscottishmountains:

I agree. I have Marker F12s on my Soul 7s. Total punter set up for idea for me. I can use the same skis for family piste, side country on the family holiday or touring in Scotland. It's a jack of all trades set up but does the job whatever the conditions. I am getting a dedicated ski mountaineering set up, and I'll go pins all the way, Marker Alpinists or ATK R12.

 crayefish 22 Jan 2021
In reply to galpinos:

I've got Soul 7s with frame bindings too and love them, though I'm not sure I'd consider them a jack of all trades

Really playful in the soft stuff, slightly flappy but very capable at speed on the groomers, but on a slightly icy piste its like someone ground the edges off my skis. 😅

 galpinos 22 Jan 2021
In reply to crayefish:

Well, I did take some big slides on icy pistes when I first got them but I've learnt their limits and can now ski within those limits! I'd probably get something like the Black Crows Navis now as an allrounder but I prefer a ski that's fun in powder/soft snow. 

 gooberman-hill 22 Jan 2021
In reply to top cat:

What is it about Scottish conditions that make pin bindings unsuitable? I've been touring on pin bindings in the Alps for 10 years now, in a range of conditions, and have never experienced a problem.

In Norway I have always been on a classic cross country binding - but then I have only skied in the Hardanger, never up North.

Steve

 Doug 22 Jan 2021
In reply to gooberman-hill:

never used pin bindings but have had problems with 3 pin telemark bindings in Scotland in wet snow around 0° which ices up in a way I've rarely/never seen in Norway or the Alps/Pyrenees although I have had a similar experience in the Vosges once.

In reply to Doug:

My 2p worth - on average, more likelihood in Scotland of heavy wet snow that ices stuff up, and also of being out in sub-optimal windy humid weather that makes hands go numb and doesn't make stopping to fiddle with iced up/malfunctioning kit any more enjoyable. 

Also, from a personal point of view, as a less than expert and not very lightweight skiier, the often unavoidable combat skiing over heather etc (with risk of awkward low speed falls) feels slightly safer. 

 kevin stephens 22 Jan 2021
In reply to DH3631:

Also there tends to be more oxygen in the air in Scotland than high up in the alps, so the weight saving from pin bindings may not be so important

 OwenM 22 Jan 2021
In reply to R1gger:

I've been using pin binding - vepec's  - in Scotland  for six years and haven't had a problem yet. 

 top cat 23 Jan 2021
In reply to gooberman-hill:

Very often we start through slush, then just wet snow, then as we get higher it freezes, then we are on very hard snow / ice.

Have you had to get into a pin binding balancing on hard, steep ice/ snow?  Bloody scary and next to impossible.

On the rare occasions we get deep snow being unable to see your bindings makes clipping in a long-term proposition: the frame binding guys will be skinning up for the next ascent by the time you are done.   With our mini hills this happens multiple times a day.

The rear release mechanism on pins is in the snow a lot of the time and tends to clog up (Scottish wet snow, then ices higher up).  The frame binding release is protected behind the boot and gets a snow releasing ' knock' at each 'footstep' so clogs less. Or not at all.

After a night out don't expect everything to work in the morning.  It might, it might not .

Pin ski crampons 'sing' to you which is very annoying, and lack the sophistication of the Axions on the frame binding.

I have a reputation for extreme professional patience, but this does not extend to equipment.   Nor do I like the prospect of using half a flask of coffee to unfreeze my bindings, which I witnessed in Norway.  Not my coffee, but i believe in learning from other people 's mistakes )

Having said all that, I'll tolerate just about anything from a Telemark binding !!e

Maybe I'll try some of the more recent pins?  Some look a bit easier to clip.  But my next purchase will be some 22 Designs tele bindings.  Way to go


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