Which binding for a slalom ski?

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Holger
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Which binding for a slalom ski?

Post by Holger » Tue Jun 09, 2020 3:47 pm

All,

I am looking for your help to select a binding for a summer bargain ski.

I have been telemarking since 1999, with a few years in between in which I skied mostly alpine. My last tele ski was a vintage 2003 Stöckli Stormrider with a Rottefella Chili. This ski is now falling apart, and as family skiing mostly keeps me on piste, I am very keen on buying a new bargain Stöckli Laser CX (at 163 cm, and I am 180cm tall). I have tested the ski as an alpine ski and love it, it is rather sportive and fast, slalom like and pretty responsive.

Now the question: should I stick with my old Chili, which I like, or should I go for something more modern and potentially powerful? I have been looking at the 22Design Vice (free pivot for touring is not really important for me, and converting to NTN is outside my budget). Any suggestions, and how does this binding "feel" compared to the Chili?

Thanks.

Holger

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Andy M
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Re: Which binding for a slalom ski?

Post by Andy M » Fri Jun 12, 2020 8:12 pm

I would go with the Vice for a couple of reasons. First, it is a better and more durable binding than the Chili (which was a good binding in its day, but it did have a history of snapped cables and cracked toeplates); and, second, the Vice has three positions of "activity" level, which are easily changed.

It's been a while since I skied the Chili, but my guess is that position 1 on the Vice (most forward and least active) is comparable to the Chili, and positions 2 or 3 would give you more powerful options to try, which you may or may not like -- but, for a slalom ski, the more active positions should give you a more quickly responsive ski.

P.S. Regarding the skiing feel of the Vice, I just skied a few days ago in some June powder, with 22Designs Axl bindings in position 3 (the Axl is, of course, the free-pivot tour version of the Vice) and some T2 Eco boots -- and, wow, what a great skiing binding. Even though I had not been on this particular ski/boot combo for a few months, turning was effortless.

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Holger
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Re: Which binding for a slalom ski?

Post by Holger » Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:14 am

Great, thanks for the encouraging feedback - I'll go with the Vice, and once I have skied I will report back. Now trying to find out if I should dare to go for a 163 cm ski length or the more cautious 170cm (I measure 180)...

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Andy M
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Re: Which binding for a slalom ski?

Post by Andy M » Wed Jun 17, 2020 11:12 pm

163cm seems a bit short for your height -- what do you weigh? I am 183cm and 84kg, and I would probably go for the length around 178cm -- and I tend to ski on a length shorter than some. If you're light for your height, it might work out fine. Then again, I just realized that one of my favorite firm-conditions skis is a K2 Backlash (92 waist, metal layer, quite damp) in 174cm -- it never feels too short with firm conditions.

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Re: Which binding for a slalom ski?

Post by Holger » Mon Jun 22, 2020 4:42 pm

Thanks - I got scared by 163 cm as well (approx. 85 kg), and went for 170cm. My previous ski was 174 and never felt too short.... I will report next season, can't wait.

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