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Wear on tx-pro from NTN Freeride & heavy ski?

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  • Wear on tx-pro from NTN Freeride & heavy ski?

    Hi all,

    I've just sent my Terminator-X pros to Scarpa to have the lower portion of the boot replaced as the toe had changed shape enough from just 2 seasons use with the Freeride binding that there was quite a lot of lateral side to side play. I'm wondering if any others have experienced this or if it's a common problem. It's going to cost me $180 USD/boot just for the part to have the lowers replaced so I'm looking at $400 in repairs on $800 boots after only two seasons and those weren't heavy use seasons. They didn't seem to have much sympathy even when I explained that my old 75mm T1's were still going strong after 6 seasons use. The bindings have a 2 year warranty and unfortunately there appears to be not much wrong with them as it's just expired, and the boots are only 1 year.

    Attached are two videos showing the lateral movement problem of my boot in a brand new sample binding screwed to the floor of my local ski shop. I'd already sent my (presumably broken) bindings to Scarpa (Rottefella dist in US) thinking this was where the problem was as the NTN's seem to have had so much breakage, but they couldn't reproduce it and said my binding seemed normal and in good shape, which lead me to testing the boots. One video is my boot the other is a brand new boot both in a brand new binding (the binding isn't mounted super solidly to the display board so it moves a little as well which is most apparent in the second, new bood video).

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/15508345970/

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/15073797393/



    So anyway I'm just wondering if others have had to replace/repair boots after so little use with the NTN bindings and if they've had success getting discounted or free repairs because it seems to be a bit of a design flaw. I wouldn't expect such wear on a boot.

    Oh, forgot to add: It occurred to me last night that lateral stiffness is one of NTN's weaknesses as can be seen with even the slight movement shown in the new boot new binding combo video. What I started wondering is if the heavy wide skis I'm on are producing more "swing weight" and therefore lateral forces than the boot/binding can handle. That being said though, I've certainly seen many people on some huge skis with NTN Freerides around the resort. I'm riding a pair of 186cm Line Influence 115's from 2012, so they have a metal top sheet and are a sandwich construction, ie a really heavy ski.

    Thanks,

    Brian
    Last edited by Nairb; 3 November 2014, 11:27 AM.

  • #2
    Honestly, there doesn't seem to be much difference in the two videos. Maybe a little more play in the used boot. Most of what I see is the binding moving around on the board and the board shifting around as well. Curious how were the power tubes set up on that demo binding?

    My old Tx Pros probably had 250+ days on them and they were a little loose but I didn't notice at all when skiing. What I did notice after so many days was that the sole had become very soft.

    When you say 2 seasons, how many days are we talking? 20 days? 50 days? I used mine for the end of one season and then two more and would call the boots shot. 250-300 days is a long life for a tele boot.

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    • #3
      The two videos were shot at a slight different angle, but there is considerably more play in the old boot, even a little up and down slop as can be seen. The distance between the binding and the green painters tape I applied for reference is changing by almost 5mm on the old boot. With the new boot, the movement is more like 1-1.5mm.

      I set the (blue) springs to 3 which is where I have my own bindings set. The board isn't moving around at all as it was screwed to the floor; the phone/camera wasn't being held perfectly steady which might account for apparent movement of the board, but it was very solidly screwed down.

      I should note also that my worn boot has the same amount of play when it is flexed fully or partially as it does when down flat like in the video, so I don't believe tightening the springs would change things as there is a lot of pressure when flexed with the same resulting play. I didn't test flexed movement on the new boot.

      My boots probably have 80 days total on them and lots of those I was only at the hill a couple hours as I go out for a quick ski before opening my business at 11am. I ski in Fernie where there can often be heavy snow conditions.
      Last edited by Nairb; 3 November 2014, 12:04 PM.

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      • #4
        The first video looks like either a small boot in a large binding or the preload is loose. The second one not so much but it's not easy to differentiate the movement in the boot from the movement of the binding itself.

        The force you are testing is nothing like what you are doing when you are skiing. In those videos, all of your force was purely rotational in a horizontal plane, as if you had a weight of zero. When you are actually skiing, most of the force is directed downward onto the edge. The rotational moment is very small and you don't feel it when you are skiing. I can do the same thing on all my T1/Switchback X2 rigs, though not as much as I'm seeing in the first video.

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        • #5
          It's a size 29 boot in a large binding. The new boot is a 28.5. Both have the same sole length. The binding is the same in both videos. I suspect the binding is moving a bit more with the new boot because there is much less play with the new boots tighter fit.

          The slop in the binding is something that can be felt when skiing probably mostly when in the transition between turns, but it can definitely be felt mid turn. This is why I contacted scarpa to see about addressing the issue because clearly something is wrong, and Scarpa has ruled out my binding. And my testing (videos) shows it to be a boot problem which I did not experience when the set up was new two years ago. It's happened over time. When scarpa saw the videos, they exclaimed "wow, you've really got a lot of movement there" (in my old boot).

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          • #6
            After 2 seasons mine were unskiable in an NTN binding. I've been mostly skiing a TTS system since which is fine.

            I've basically given up on NTN - there were some good aspects to it, but the sloppy interface (for me at least), weight, lack of activity, jerky flex and limited ROM combine to make it unworkable for me. TTS is my last gasp for tele - light, smooth flex, more activity, but I worry about what is happening to my toepieces (lots of wear on the pins after 2 seasons). Next step is AT

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            • #7
              Originally posted by ben_a View Post
              After 2 seasons mine were unskiable in an NTN binding. I've been mostly skiing a TTS system since which is fine.

              I've basically given up on NTN - there were some good aspects to it, but the sloppy interface (for me at least), weight, lack of activity, jerky flex and limited ROM combine to make it unworkable for me. TTS is my last gasp for tele - light, smooth flex, more activity, but I worry about what is happening to my toepieces (lots of wear on the pins after 2 seasons). Next step is AT
              Vurry interesssstink.

              ain't no turn like tele!

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              • #8
                Yeah - I'm a bit depressed by it TBH, although I have been skiing it fairly hard.
                The wear is a rounding of the pin where it transitions form the cone to the cylindrical part of the pin. The boot eyes are also seeing a lot. I haven't had any negative effects as yet so I'm going to ski it to the point at which it becomes a problem, but I could see accidental releases becoming more common. Watch this space.

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                • #9
                  Nairb, I have had the same problem as you on a couple different pair of Comps. I think the boots get crimped and the bindings get loose after around 50 days. It seems worse if the snow is wet and the boots get wet. I can feel the slop in the system but only slightly. It seems for me every time the system gets bad enough the bindings break and or I replace the boots.

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                  • #10
                    Yikes. On a couple pair of boots eh? Have you had any luck in getting them replaced by Scarpa?

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                    • #11
                      I have not tried because I never thougt they would replace them.

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                      • #12
                        I was hoping if I found others with the problem that I might get a bit more sympathy from them and perhaps a discount if its a common problem or design problem. Scarpa told me that after all the initial NTN binding problems, they convinced rottefella to extend their warranty to 2 years from 1. That's why sending my binding in I'd kinda hoped there was something wrong with them as the 2 year warranty was just about up.

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                        • #13
                          I rebuild NTN freerides. I drill out the $hitty aluminum set screw threads and mount a steel threaded insert. when I torque my binding on the base plate, I can goose the set screws and my bindings are rock solid on the base plate so they don't move around. In the past when I felt lateral slop, it was always the binding wiggling around on the base plate. It's hard to tell what is moving in your video....

                          All my NTN boots have the tattoo of the toe cup on them. It doesn't seem to have affected their performance.
                          the fall line is your friend.... resistance is futile

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                          • #14
                            Are you watching both videos or just the second one with the new boot? Because everyone I've shown the videos to in person is seeing the movement of my old boot in the binding as pretty clear and obvious. But I've had a couple people here say it isn't clear. To me it seems really clear in the videos how much movement of my boot in the binding is shown verses the second video with the new boot, so I'd thought I'd better check to make sure it's known there are two videos linked. Scarpa saw both videos and were able to see a clear difference.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nairb View Post
                              Are you watching both videos or just the second one with the new boot? Because everyone I've shown the videos to in person is seeing the movement of my old boot in the binding as pretty clear and obvious. But I've had a couple people here say it isn't clear. To me it seems really clear in the videos how much movement of my boot in the binding is shown verses the second video with the new boot, so I'd thought I'd better check to make sure it's known there are two videos linked. Scarpa saw both videos and were able to see a clear difference.
                              I am seeing way more slop in the first video than the second, not sure how others are missing that.
                              My Crispi boots exhibit the "tattoo" that tele.skier speaks of, but not much slop. No experience with other NTN compatible boot brands.

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