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 Post subject: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 12:44 am 
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Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:54 pm
Posts: 8
I thought I should post a small novel about the split I put together this year. I'll add photos if i can figure it out.

EDIT: see photos on Flickr - Search keltron2012

In the past I was mostly telemarking but rode a Voile 166 that I bought used about 10 or 11 years ago. It saw a few days a season but was a little big for me so was a pain to take, especially when going out with skiers. Telemarking was OK but I really like snowboarding. I thought maybe AT skiing was going to be the answer so got a nice light setup, including the Dynafit TLT5 mountain boots, but I still thought snowboarding was more fun. So a few days before a new years hut trip this winter I decided to cut a deck and update the splitboard. Thanks to Barrows and others riding similar setups for the inspiration!

I bought a used Burton Fish (2008 model) 159cm that was in newish shape for $70 dollars. I also bought a $5 board to practice drilling and cutting upon, money well spent. I stripped most of the components off the Voile 166 and transferred the parts to the burton after cutting it. Cutting the board was a pain due to the inserts, I found a really thin grinding wheel worked great on the practice board but ½ way through the Burton the wheel self-destructed so I moved to a carbide saw blade. This worked OK except the blade heated up a lot cutting the inserts and then warped and then cut crooked… But it was late so I made it work out and the board ended up in 2 pieces, with a somewhat imperfect cut. Good news is it really doesn’t matter, it skis up fine and rides down even better. In future I would use a jig and table saw and if cutting a burton I would consider using a very thin cutting/grinding wheel rather than a carbide blade. I put some epoxy on the cut edge. In future I would just hot wax it. I think that boards don’t absorb all that much water when in use and gear is stored dry so why worry about a little water when you are using the board?

For mounting the split kit, I was lucky to have a few spare parts from the old setup, so I installed mostly new voile clips and tip and tail clips. The plates are super old (12 years?), and designed for the voile inserts. I was able to use one or two inserts on the Burton board, then drill the plate and board, grind down ski screws to the right length, and use enough ski screws plus epoxy to make what I thought would be a strong enough connection. Snowboards seem substantially thinner than skis so I used as many screws as I could. This looks like shit but is probably pretty strong. It’s worth mentioning that I am pretty small at 5’6” and 145 pounds. I didn’t want to use T-nuts for a few reasons – not wanting to screw up the base with lots of big holes, and not wanting to go buy t-nuts – I used ski screws on hand already. My stance is about 20.5” apart.

For the ski up I mounted some Dynafit toe pieces that I bought off a friend – I paid $200 for some old skis, with a complete set of Dynafit TLT bindings. I should try to sell the heels and skis I suppose to try to recover money. I would have paid about this much factoring in shipping to have toes shipped from Spark R and D and they would not have arrived in time for my trip. The Dynafit toes are old and well used but this is fine since they get locked in non-release mode for the skin up and they offer really good control for ski mode. They were mounted directly to the board, again with ground down ski screws. The addition of the Dynafit toes is probably the single greatest improvement to the setup that I have noticed since changing to hard boots. I was really frustrated by the lack of ski control with the soft boot setup.

I used the old climbing wires for the heels which are light and work great for me since they seat into the boot sole and can’t slip down.

For skins I cut down the ancient purple Voile tractor skins, which I believe are so old that despite the purple colour they are mohair. They are in decent shape and the glue still sticks fine - so fine that I added a centre strip of duct tape to make pulling them apart possible. No time for tail clips and no problems yet, if I have to I will get the G3 clips.

I got BD expedition 3-section poles. I took off the straps since I don’t like or need them. I was using an older model of BD pole with an annoying-as-hell button that would not release. Money well spent.

The Dynafit TLT5 Mountain boots were expensive but again were worth it. If I want to ski tour I can still use them with AT skis, but for splitboarding I have made no permanent modifications. The only thing I did was stick a small (a few square inches) piece of leftover climbing skin over the hole in the back so that walk mode can’t engage even with the buckle closed. In ski up mode I open the buckle anyhow, and in ride down mode I close the front foot’s buckle and leave the back foot’s buckle open. The piece of skin sticks on between two plastic layers of the boot so can’t fall out. This is just right for me. I’ll remove the power strap when I get around to it and I don’t use the extra tongue stiffener. I do up the bottom buckle on both feet but not very tight. I find these boots comfortable, they are very lightweight especially compared to a conventional soft boot and binding combined.

I bought new Voile Plate bindings. I had to cut them a little shorter so that they went tight enough to fit my sole length (size 27 mondo I think). They were 70 dollars, which might be a poor excuse for not re-engineering them since about what, 1985? The Voiles are OK but the wires seem much longer than needed, the plastic is not confidence inspiring, and they generally work but don’t inspire confidence. They are very light and were a total pain to mount and can’t be adjusted. Again, due to the 12 year old voile split kit, I had to drill a bunch of holes to make it work. I will get something like Burton race plates when I can which are light as well but look to be designed just a little better.

In all this took about 4 nights after work to do, plus a few trips out of the shed to get a board and get bindings and poles. Probably about 12 or so hours of messing around, but the lost sleep seems worth it.

I have used this system for about 7 full days now, mostly on powder conditions in the Kootenays and where i live in BC on the Coast, including open slopes, pillows, and tight trees and on slopes of varying steepness. Even some rocks. I can’t notice any disadvantage to the hardboot system I have compared to soft boots. I have no reduced foot mobility (in other words it feels no different to me than riding soft boots), it’s lighter weight, I have better ski control in ski mode, and so overall it’s more fun than the last setup, and certainly more fun than skiing!


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 Post subject: Re: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 10:05 am 
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Joined: Wed Feb 28, 2007 9:34 pm
Posts: 308
Location: kelowna bc canada
Talk about jumping into the deep end with the tlt5 setup.
Have fun, soon your skier friends will be trying to keep up with you.


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 Post subject: Re: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 8:41 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:09 pm
Posts: 37
Location: Seattle, WA
KF - can you post a link to your flickr pics? A search for keltron2012 didn't turn up any results, and I'm really curious about splitting the Fish :)


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 Post subject: Re: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Sun Feb 05, 2012 8:51 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:54 pm
Posts: 8
link for photos

http://www.flickr.com/photos/75881195@N03/


I'll try to paste one here, but it doesn't seem to show on the preview. Sorry about that.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 2:03 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jan 04, 2011 9:03 pm
Posts: 221
Location: British Columbia
You mentioned you don't feel any difference with hard boots, and no permanent mods. What type of stance do you ride? Forward or duck? Seems cool that you have found a boot you can use for both skiing and boarding.

I keep thinking about trying the hard boots, but every time I look at those plate bindings I change my mind..Seems so high off the deck.


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 Post subject: Re: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Mon Feb 06, 2012 4:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:54 pm
Posts: 8
My stance is 20.5 inches, back foot 0 degrees, front foot about 15 degrees. Back from centre a ways but i am not sure by how much. I suppose the voile plate binding raises the boot about 1cm above the Aluminum slider track, and so you are maybe not quite 2cm above the deck when riding. I'm not sure i would notice much difference being 1cm lower, especially mostly riding powder in the backcountry.


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 Post subject: Re: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Tue Feb 07, 2012 12:40 pm 
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Joined: Tue Dec 01, 2009 8:46 pm
Posts: 44
Nice work!! You might consider installing the heel of the dynafit bindings too. Its nice to have the ability to lock the heel and equally as nice to engage the 2 stage lift with your pole tips :)

_________________
(_______) Prior Backcountry 172 Direct Mount Dynafit w/Mtn Plates, for now...
(________) Donek custom "YETTY" 173 28.9 cm waist w/Catek
(____________)AK Bommer 'The Rhino Chaser' 210" (circa 1993)


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 Post subject: Re: Burton Fish, Dynafit TLT5, Voile Plates
PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:55 pm 
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Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 6:54 pm
Posts: 8
update:
I've had a few more days in the backcountry and a couple days on the hill at whistler-blackcomb with this setup riding the lifts.
-Added a leash in case i accidentally hit the release lever on the toe when on the lift. Otherwise same setup.
-I don't plan on adding the dynafit heel on the skis, i'd prefer to save weight and just lean back if i need to ride in ski mode.
-still need to cut off the power straps from the boots, i find the strap useless.
-carves really well, especially toeside turns. Groomers are especially amazing, not really a surprise i guess.
-i was worried that i'd be able to crank a foot out of the wimpy looking voile plate bindings, but so far have had absolutely no issues or even close calls, havent lost a foot or clipped in wrong or unintentionally released a foot.
-Rides great in bounds in all kinds of snow. Still best as a powder board, since the boots do feel a little stiffer than soft boots, notice this on the bumpier harder packed snow.
-someday i'll get another non-split board for riding, probably with soft boots, on the hill but until then this works fine.

happy riding!


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