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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 11:37 pm 
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Location: Chamonix
BGnight wrote:
Irish, thanks for clarifying what happened. I'm sure there are a lot of K owners on here who want to know exactly how they failed. I don't think you're intentionally misleading people, I just think your story wasn't clear as to what happened with the product exactly. So was your lever opened after you stopped and inspected it? You made it sound like it might have been opened from an alder bush. I would think when you stopped the latch was either open or closed with the black safety catch in place or not. Just looking for clues as anyone who rides this stuff would want to know. You also said your front K clip was loose which could have contributed to strange pressures on the plates..


Yeah dude no worries,you got me thinking about it more also and how it did happen,as i said i dont really know how my foot came free,i just rode a 700m line in blower pow right back to the highway,so i'm pretty sure the pin and latch were in there.I was definetly walking out with a binding attached to my foot,3 other splitboarders were with me.

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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Thu Feb 02, 2012 11:43 pm 
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Location: Chamonix
barrows wrote:
While it is true that every company is going to have some failures, especially relatively new companies, with entirely an entirely new concept, it is important to take these kind of failures seriously, and make sure that people report them, both to the riding community, and to the manufacturer.
I am no hater, I have a great deal of respect for Karakoram, as they have spent a great deal of time and money in the development of an innovative splitboard interface system. But, a failure that allows the binding to separate from the board is totally unacceptable. Many of us ride in situations where such a failure could result in very serious injury, or even death.
IrishGav: I do hope that Karakoram has demanded that the broken pieces are returned to them for a thorough investigation of what caused the failure, and how they can guarantee that such a failure will never happen again, either through a design change (in case they determine that a design flaw is responsible) or better QC practices (if a manufacturing flaw is to blame).


Well said Barrows,they were'nt demanding the parts be sent back but i am sending them back pretty soon anyway and hopefully they will be able to figure out why so many parts failed.
Bryce did ask me in the last email,what they could do to win my trust again and i basically said the same as you said above.A more stringent inspection of the metals pre and post cutting/bending.Because from what he told me they don't do it on everyone.

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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 7:48 am 
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Posts: 27
I kind of lost count, how many failures have been recorded of the Karokorams?

I reckon that there will always be a 0.5% production error margin, it is the service that counts afterwards.

If they replace the broken parts, and try to figure out what went wrong I see no reason not to trust the brand.

Looking at the bending, I assume one of the clips wasn't tightened properly, this caused the board halves to move and bend the plate.

The problem and advantage is the aluminum. real stiff, but if you have a real flexy board underneath it, it will cause stress.

I say lets make some carbon or thermoplastic ones!


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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 9:19 am 
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Jarno wrote:
I kind of lost count, how many failures have been recorded of the Karokorams?

I reckon that there will always be a 0.5% production error margin, it is the service that counts afterwards.

Your point is interesting-I believe a failure where the foot separates from the board is never acceptable, as the potential consequences are just too grave.

If they replace the broken parts, and try to figure out what went wrong I see no reason not to trust the brand.

Replacing the parts is nice, but will not do much for you if you break your femur in the backcountry and bleed out.
Looking at the bending, I assume one of the clips wasn't tightened properly, this caused the board halves to move and bend the plate.

The problem and advantage is the aluminum. real stiff, but if you have a real flexy board underneath it, it will cause stress.

If you are right, this would be a design flaw.

I say lets make some carbon or thermoplastic ones!


I am somewhat distrubed that Karakoram did not demand the broken pieces be returned for inspection. This seems to indicate a rather cavalier attitude to the potential outcome of such a failure-I hope I am wrong, and that they are taking this failure very seriously.
I also do not suspect a design flaw, as I would expect to see more reported failures if a design flaw was to blame. IrishGav, can you give an estimate as to how many hours these bindings might have on them? Looking at your moniker, it appears thta you may be getting in a lot more riding than most users.
Metal quality seems the most likely cause for this failure-perhaps K received a bad batch of metal (not to their normal specification) and they did not confirm the metal's spec through testing?

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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 10:30 am 
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Location: Salida, Flagstaff
I've had several binding failures over the years (mostly on plates) that have left me one-footed at speed; it's a horrible feeling and hugely dangerous, something I wish to never experience again in my life.

As a big guy whose riding entails a lot of lateral foot twisting and binding torquing; I think I would be prone to this sort of metal torquing and failure if it is endemic to Karakorum's design. Short of hearing a clear explanation as to why this happened, I have to say that I would be scared to ride this set up.

I think Karakorum would be smart to (1) examine parts from this and any similar failures, (2) provide a clear explanation on this forum as to what the problem was, (3) describe whether it was unique to those cases (bad metal), a production hick-up, an endemic design flaw, or something else, and (4) provide a clear explanation as to how that problem will be remedied in the future.

Not knocking Karakorum at all; just saying that I think this is what they now should do... And, at least for this one consumer, need to do.

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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 12:22 pm 
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Posts: 27
barrows wrote:
Jarno wrote:
I kind of lost count, how many failures have been recorded of the Karokorams?

I reckon that there will always be a 0.5% production error margin, it is the service that counts afterwards.

Your point is interesting-I believe a failure where the foot separates from the board is never acceptable, as the potential consequences are just too grave.

If they replace the broken parts, and try to figure out what went wrong I see no reason not to trust the brand.

Replacing the parts is nice, but will not do much for you if you break your femur in the backcountry and bleed out.
Looking at the bending, I assume one of the clips wasn't tightened properly, this caused the board halves to move and bend the plate.

The problem and advantage is the aluminum. real stiff, but if you have a real flexy board underneath it, it will cause stress.

If you are right, this would be a design flaw.

I say lets make some carbon or thermoplastic ones!


I am somewhat distrubed that Karakoram did not demand the broken pieces be returned for inspection. This seems to indicate a rather cavalier attitude to the potential outcome of such a failure-I hope I am wrong, and that they are taking this failure very seriously.
I also do not suspect a design flaw, as I would expect to see more reported failures if a design flaw was to blame. IrishGav, can you give an estimate as to how many hours these bindings might have on them? Looking at your moniker, it appears thta you may be getting in a lot more riding than most users.
Metal quality seems the most likely cause for this failure-perhaps K received a bad batch of metal (not to their normal specification) and they did not confirm the metal's spec through testing?



With the 0.5% i dont mean that this margin will have the binding fail completly. It is the percentage that something is wrong. Let it be cnc tolerances or a fault in the raw meterial.
And in the real world, nothing is 100% safe. Prius brakes fail, mountainbike frames crack, boards delaminate...

If the faillure is because the binding or clip wasnt mounted properly or any other kind of impact damage or loose bolts, then you cant blaim the company. Though it would be good to look into the how it could be that could happen and maybe alter the design to prevent it and make it more user friendly.

And as with all products, you need to clean, service and inspect all parts on a regular basis. If it gets used, stuff can corrode, crack, rattle loose or get bent or damaged (even in transport).

I would love to see more pics of the broken parts...


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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 12:52 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 10:05 am
Posts: 1510
Location: Colorado
Jarno wrote:
barrows wrote:
Jarno wrote:
I kind of lost count, how many failures have been recorded of the Karokorams?

I reckon that there will always be a 0.5% production error margin, it is the service that counts afterwards.

Your point is interesting-I believe a failure where the foot separates from the board is never acceptable, as the potential consequences are just too grave.

If they replace the broken parts, and try to figure out what went wrong I see no reason not to trust the brand.

Replacing the parts is nice, but will not do much for you if you break your femur in the backcountry and bleed out.
Looking at the bending, I assume one of the clips wasn't tightened properly, this caused the board halves to move and bend the plate.

The problem and advantage is the aluminum. real stiff, but if you have a real flexy board underneath it, it will cause stress.

If you are right, this would be a design flaw.

I say lets make some carbon or thermoplastic ones!


I am somewhat distrubed that Karakoram did not demand the broken pieces be returned for inspection. This seems to indicate a rather cavalier attitude to the potential outcome of such a failure-I hope I am wrong, and that they are taking this failure very seriously.
I also do not suspect a design flaw, as I would expect to see more reported failures if a design flaw was to blame. IrishGav, can you give an estimate as to how many hours these bindings might have on them? Looking at your moniker, it appears thta you may be getting in a lot more riding than most users.
Metal quality seems the most likely cause for this failure-perhaps K received a bad batch of metal (not to their normal specification) and they did not confirm the metal's spec through testing?



With the 0.5% i dont mean that this margin will have the binding fail completly. It is the percentage that something is wrong. Let it be cnc tolerances or a fault in the raw meterial.
And in the real world, nothing is 100% safe. Prius brakes fail, mountainbike frames crack, boards delaminate...

If the faillure is because the binding or clip wasnt mounted properly or any other kind of impact damage or loose bolts, then you cant blaim the company. Though it would be good to look into the how it could be that could happen and maybe alter the design to prevent it and make it more user friendly.

And as with all products, you need to clean, service and inspect all parts on a regular basis. If it gets used, stuff can corrode, crack, rattle loose or get bent or damaged (even in transport).

I would love to see more pics of the broken parts...



Agreed, in a general sense. But in this case, what we see is a critical piece of metal, broken in half, which allowed the binding to release from the board. There is no user error here, the only possible explanations of the failure are: bad material which does not meet specification, poor manufacturing, which allowed a crack produced during manufacturing to go by unnoticed, or, a design flaw.

I am also agreed that frequent close inspection of critical parts is a very wise thing to do, and would hope that all Karakoram (and other bindings) users are inspired by this thread to thoroughly inspect their bindings and interfaces under a bright light for any hairline cracks which might exist.

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Quiver Killer inserts

http://protectourwinters.org/
http://14ersnowboardproject.homestead.com/


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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 5:58 pm 
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Location: Chamonix
Hey Barrows,
This was day 4 on the Karakorams when it happened.I'm 170lbs rider so not massive by any means,I like to throwdown some big turns and pow slashies although I'm no Jeremy Jones!
The day in question I decided to just straightline a small section of alder scrub at the bottom of a run near the highway on a slope of about 20 degrees going pretty slow and I felt my back foot catch and then come free - binding still attached to my foot - base plates still attached to board.

I agree that they should seriously investigate the problem and it did look like a very bad batch of metal because I had 4 independent parts bend or break on this pair.

Alot of people including myself believed that Karakoram is the way forward,but in what happened with my bindings has created a small bit of doubt in the back of everyone who owns a set of these,is there other pairs out there that are at fault like mine? ,everyone should double check their gear and be sure of no bending like my pictures show.
Because the 2 ears are pre bent and stressed pieces which broke at the weakest part.Again I still have not determined how the binding came free from the board?
Say for example I did this 700m line without the back pin or latch engaged,then how would the ear break off? The pin is not engaged so no stress would come on the ear?
Anyways I'm pretty sure I did this line with more than just the toe piece,but it still doesn't explain how the binding came off my foot.
The only explanation I can think of is that upon catching the alder branch it blew out the ear as shown and disengaged the latch and pin? The latch is directly above the ear in question and could see that popping open if that ear snapped off,but the pin should have stayed in,the latch does not hold the pin,it's more like a secondary safety system.

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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:06 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 17, 2009 11:57 pm
Posts: 269
Location: Chamonix
Jarno wrote:
barrows wrote:
Jarno wrote:
I kind of lost count, how many failures have been recorded of the Karokorams?

I reckon that there will always be a 0.5% production error margin, it is the service that counts afterwards.

Your point is interesting-I believe a failure where the foot separates from the board is never acceptable, as the potential consequences are just too grave.

If they replace the broken parts, and try to figure out what went wrong I see no reason not to trust the brand.

Replacing the parts is nice, but will not do much for you if you break your femur in the backcountry and bleed out.
Looking at the bending, I assume one of the clips wasn't tightened properly, this caused the board halves to move and bend the plate.

The problem and advantage is the aluminum. real stiff, but if you have a real flexy board underneath it, it will cause stress.

If you are right, this would be a design flaw.

I say lets make some carbon or thermoplastic ones!


I am somewhat distrubed that Karakoram did not demand the broken pieces be returned for inspection. This seems to indicate a rather cavalier attitude to the potential outcome of such a failure-I hope I am wrong, and that they are taking this failure very seriously.
I also do not suspect a design flaw, as I would expect to see more reported failures if a design flaw was to blame. IrishGav, can you give an estimate as to how many hours these bindings might have on them? Looking at your moniker, it appears thta you may be getting in a lot more riding than most users.
Metal quality seems the most likely cause for this failure-perhaps K received a bad batch of metal (not to their normal specification) and they did not confirm the metal's spec through testing?



With the 0.5% i dont mean that this margin will have the binding fail completly. It is the percentage that something is wrong. Let it be cnc tolerances or a fault in the raw meterial.
And in the real world, nothing is 100% safe. Prius brakes fail, mountainbike frames crack, boards delaminate...

If the faillure is because the binding or clip wasnt mounted properly or any other kind of impact damage or loose bolts, then you cant blaim the company. Though it would be good to look into the how it could be that could happen and maybe alter the design to prevent it and make it more user friendly.

And as with all products, you need to clean, service and inspect all parts on a regular basis. If it gets used, stuff can corrode, crack, rattle loose or get bent or damaged (even in transport).

I would love to see more pics of the broken parts...


Hey Jarno,I will take some more pics of the parts and post them,living in an RV now so might take a couple of days.
I can testify that I had the board and bindings set up pretty good,all parts loctighted.I had the toe pieces tight as per the Karakoram instructional video on YouTube,I had exchanged numerous emails with Bryce per and post purchase on boot size fitting also.I even had a friend help me out who is a gear whore and geek also!

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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 11:37 pm 
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Joined: Mon Dec 21, 2009 12:03 pm
Posts: 51
irishgav sorry to hear about your issue and pleased to hear no harm done.
A couple of questions, out of pure selfishness, e.g. will this happen to me......

1. did/do your binding mounting plates move significantly up/down when the bindings were mounted in ride mode? (as reported elsewhere on the forum)
2. what angles and stance width are you riding

my hypothesis being...IF there is significant movement in the binding vertically (due to your unique angles/stance width, the positioning of the mounting bolts are a long way from the pre-bent "ears") then this up movement would cause lots of force/stress on said "ears".

This coupled with materials issues, could then explain that you had an issue whilst some people have no problems.
either way would be "nice" for an expert to manage the thinking and remove my worries... just off to the cellar to look for stress fractures in my Ks.


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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:01 am 
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Joined: Sat Nov 28, 2009 1:48 pm
Posts: 19
Location: Snoqualmie, Wa and Sandy, UT
Hello Splitboard.com Friends,

First I want to say we at Karakoram (it's just Tyler and me at the moment with some part time help) stand behind our product 100%. The part failure that Gavan experienced was a manufacturing defect caused by the bending process. Each of these parts is bent by hand on a break press. It appears that this part was over bent which caused what is called Orange Peeling (stress fractures caused by bending). Each part is inspected for this as it comes off the break press, but this one slipped through. This is 100% our mistake and we have added a step to our inspection process to make sure this does not happen again. We have offered to replace the bad parts or give Gavan a full refund. With that said this is one failure in thousands of parts. It is unacceptable to us, but mistakes do happen in all companies. This part as designed can withstand 4604 lbs in tension and 560 lbs in bending before yield even higher for breakage. We test our bindings to the ASTM standard F2546 and ISO standards 14573 and 15344. We've ridden this part for five years and this is the first time we've ever seen this part break. If any of our current users have concerns you can inspect the bend of the heel loop to see if there is any sign of orange peeling. We will replace the heel attachment loops for you at no cost.

Tyler and I are 100% confident in our bindings and we stand behind our product 100%. If any of our customers ever have any issues large or small we will make it right. We are not a big corporation making a product to get "market share" or hit "growth numbers". We are just two snowboarders who have put our life savings into developing products we are passionate about. We are the end users as well. Thank you to everyone who has supported us and we'll see you in the mountains.

Best Regards,

Bryce and Tyler


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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:36 am 
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Posts: 295
Location: Washington
Yeah Bryce. On the real.


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 Post subject: Re: Karakoram breaking after couple of days
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 2:35 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 17, 2009 11:35 pm
Posts: 69
nice to see you posting on here bryce. for what it's worth, i have the 1st season k'ram split 30s and have had zero problems with them other than a toe strap breaking which the klosters promptly replaced. the interface in my opinion is 100% reliable.


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