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NTN Freedom binding popping into tour mode while turning

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  • NTN Freedom binding popping into tour mode while turning

    I have a new pair of Rottefella NTN Freedom bindings that I am having a small problem with on the resort slopes.


    Occasionally, mid turn, the binding on the inside ski "clicks" and pops into walk mode and that ski becomes very hard to control.


    Is there something wrong with how my bindings are set up or have been installed? Is there something I can tighten to prevent this from happening again?

    I've read a suggestion to zip tie the binding and tour leavers together, so that the tour mode stays closed. That'll work well for resort skiing, but would still leave me unable to use tour mode in the back country.

  • #2
    LM,

    You didn't give a lot of detail, but this sounds like an icing issue. I noticed it my first day in snow with any depth.

    Originally posted by Dostie - Freedom Review on EYT 19nov12
    If you look at the area in front of the boot toe, the touring switch with the pink rubber tab on it creates a lot of cavities that collect snow. If the snow gets packed down it can prevent the touring switch from locking the toe for making turns. When you give the binding a strong forward flexing push it can pop up, putting you in “insta-tele” mode.
    The negative aspects of this binding were "hidden" on page 2 of this review.

    I think this was discussed at TTips a bit too, and the suggestion was to spray with silicone to prevent snow from glamming on to the plastic parts. Please chime in if you know better.

    ain't no turn like tele!

    Comment


    • #3
      Welcome to the forum.

      While it could obviously be something else I think Dostie nailed it. Everyone I know has had this problem on occasion if we are not careful making sure the binding goes fully in to ski mode. A little snow or ice under the mechanism can keep it from seating properly so it will pop back up once you start skiing. I try to shake out any loose snow and make sure I push the latch down extra firmly and tap it pretty hard with my pole handle end. I have not had this problem since I started doing this.

      I know someone who posts here keeps a golf tee in his pocket to clean out any snow or ice. I think bottom line where you live can effect how often this happens. Areas with warmer sticky snow tend to make the problem worse. I am on record saying that if I lived in the PNW I would not ski the Freeride or Freedom.
      Last edited by James; 29 September 2014, 07:28 PM.

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      • #4
        I always made sure to clear snow out from my bindings fully and it still happens to me.
        The first time it happened was in a steep couloir. So now my solution to this problem is to use other bindings if I'm skiing somewhere that has consequence.

        I still do enjoy the bindings in powder though. Although the problem still happens.
        No one cares that you can't tele

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by LastMile View Post
          I've read a suggestion to zip tie the binding and tour leavers together, so that the tour mode stays closed. That'll work well for resort skiing, but would still leave me unable to use tour mode in the back country.
          I recall the zip tie solution was for the freeRIDE binding because it has 2 parallel concentric levers that can be easily zip tied together so the tour lever doesn't jump open. I never heard it as a solution for the freeDOM binding which has an inch worm type mechanism to enable/disable tour mode.

          My solution for the freedom bindings inch worm mechanism is to use the GRIP end of the pole to bump the tour mechanism firmly downward after I close the binding throw lever. It's never popped up since I started doing that. I've had a pair of bindings replaced under warrantee after the toe blocks jumped the stop mechanism. I was pretty worried that the binding was going to have continuous issues for a few years,.... like the freeride did. Mostly, I only have freedom bindings on touring skis, and haven't had any trouble with them after I got my broken pair replaced.... knock on wood...
          the fall line is your friend.... resistance is futile

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          • #6
            What boots were you using with the Freedoms?
            I was using Garmont Prophets and experienced the tour mode pop a few times BUT since I've changed over to Scarpa TX's I've had no problems.
            The Prophets seemed to have thinner toe soles which made them very easy to get in and out of the Freedoms and really easy to change between modes but the increased thicker toe soles of the Scarpa's made it quite hard to even step into the binding let alone close down the forward latch and really hard to change between tour and downhill modes ------ so much so that I filed some rubber off the toe soles to thin them down a tad to make the system easier to use on the go!
            Anyone else experienced this difference in boot dilemma?
            Last edited by tele-whippet; 29 September 2014, 10:30 PM.

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            • #7
              A related phenomenon is that the icing will prevent flipping the release lever to get out of the binding. Not so hazardous as the instant free pivot in coolers but frustrating.
              It's turns! Of course it's worth the hike!

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              • #8
                My experience is that the Freedom on the trailing ski pops to touring mode only when I'm poodling. Some might call it a feature, but I kind of wish my bindings wouldn't critique my skiing, particularly when I'm in a narrow chute.

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                • #9
                  I have skied the Freedoms a lot with Scarpa TX Pros, and the Prophets. Only had this happen once, when I didn't fully depress the black Tour/Ski thingy at the front. Like James, "I push the latch down extra firmly and tap it pretty hard with my pole handle end"

                  More important, is where are you skiing a resort in September?
                  Last edited by chamonix; 1 October 2014, 09:02 AM.

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                  • #10
                    One thing I would add is obviously it is frustrating or even dangerous to have the binding pop in to tour mode at the wrong time. For me I noticed it would always happen on the first or second turn. So now after I double check that I have put the lever down I then make a few deep shuffles with my feet trying to see if the binding is secured in ski mode. While this is another thing in the long list of annoying tele gear problems I try to look at dealing with these problems as things that makes us unique in the ski world and the way things are headed we are going back to being more unique every year.

                    I think most people are having the same problem as me. However given the narrow parameters in which the mechanism on this binding goes between tour and ski mode it does not surprise me that people like Alex are having it happen a lot more frequently no matter what they do.
                    Last edited by James; 1 October 2014, 10:28 AM.

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                    • #11
                      People have said that they wouldn't use the binding in the PNW / SWBC... since we have higher than average levels of moisture and it likes to stick places that are hard to see.
                      No one cares that you can't tele

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Alex View Post
                        People have said that they wouldn't use the binding in the PNW / SWBC... since we have higher than average levels of moisture and it likes to stick places that are hard to see.
                        People have said a lot of things.... not all of which are true in every case...

                        I ski at one of the lowest elevation regions of the PNW... "Snow Crummy" pass is what some call it. I have had my freedom binding pop into tour mode, which prompted me to make sure I give the mechanism a good tap downward before I launch into my first turn. James has a good idea too, giving a compression or two before you launch into a the fall line to make a real turn.

                        When I ski freedom bindings, I am usually touring in relatively soft boots with blue power tubes set on 2.5 . Even though I am a larger person, I tend to let the ski flow rather than muscle it because none of my backcountry gear is designed to pound out resort turns. I don't think the NTN freedom binding is the best choice of binding if you want to use the most powerful boots and the most powerful springs to ride the lifts... It's NOT designed to deliver hammerhead levels of leverage...

                        ... Yeah, I know, most of you are tired of hearing me say it.... and mostly, I am tired of saying it to you all... All gear choice is a compromise...

                        Some bindings aren't designed to generate a lot of leverage.... If your technique is based on having a lot of spring tension in your binding, you should probably ski a binding that can generate a lot of leverage... like the Axl or BD01's or Burnt mountain bindings. NTN doesn't really generate nearly the same amount of ski tip pressure as some other bindings do.

                        I don't think the freedom binding is going to last long, or be reliable for people who are putting large stresses on them, riding the lifts with 4 buckle boots with the highest spring tension maxed out on them.

                        The new 22 design NTN binding probably will be a more bulletproof NTN binding for those skiers who like a heavily sprung binding....
                        the fall line is your friend.... resistance is futile

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Alex View Post
                          People have said that they wouldn't use the binding in the PNW / SWBC... since we have higher than average levels of moisture and it likes to stick places that are hard to see.
                          I would be one of those people. Or more accurately I would prefer not to use them but have no choice since that is what I own.

                          I like NTN but mostly because the boots fit so well. I think they ski pretty well especially the Freerides with a race ski type set up on groomers but like most gear and what tele.skeir said there are compromises. For me the compromises are worth it living here. The few times I have been to SEBC the snow sticking to and around both the Freerides and Freedoms tilts the compromise factor towards a T-1 X2 set up. Obviously YMMV.
                          Last edited by James; 1 October 2014, 01:47 PM.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by chamonix View Post
                            More important, is where are you skiing a resort in September?
                            Thredbo, Australia.
                            Awesome corn BC skiing left up high now , resorts were still great until 2 weeks ago but now only a few lifts turning at a couple of resorts with the dwindling cover low down.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by tele.skier View Post
                              My solution for the freedom bindings inch worm mechanism is to use the GRIP end of the pole to bump the tour mechanism firmly downward after I close the binding throw lever. It's never popped up since I started doing that.
                              That didn't do the trick for me- I find it necessary to take the ski off and really get the snow out of there with a ski pole tip (a little ball of snow forms in the triangle created by the tour mechanism while touring and that needs to be broken up and removed). Not ideal but hey every tour-mode binding has its issues and this one is not too bad, but no more ripping skins with skis on though.

                              Not sure why the OP is having trouble at the resort though- if you are storing your skis inside at night and not using the touring mechanism, it makes me think you have a bad binding.
                              Reluctant enthusiast, part-time crusader, half-hearted fanatic

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