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Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 8:41 pm Posts: 1619 Location: Santa Cruz, CA
This should've been a trip report, but the trip didn't happen. I was headed up to Tahoe on Saturday evening with Larry and breadbox. We decided to take breadbox's car since it could accomodate all our stuff, and we figured it would get the best gas mileage. We were driving through Sacramento when we noticed a car pass us, and this guy was staring at us with a really strange expression. We were wondering WTF was up with this guy, and were about ready to Keep It Real (tm), when we noticed a bunch of smoke starting to pour out of the back of the car, and then this horrendous noise from the rear axle. Somehow we made it off the freeway into the parking lot of an auto shop (closed of course). It appeared that the rear differential had lost all its oil and was basically burning up. Not good. So we spent a couple hours in the parking lot there on the corner of Q and 3rd street brewing up tea, checking out pics from other trips, and BS'ing while waiting for breadbox's buddy Troy to come pick us up. That guy racked up some serious karma points for coming out from Berkeley, picking us up and taking us back.
Not quite the trip we expected, but from what I hear the conditions in Tahoe weren't that great on Sunday anyway. Still, I gotta say...
So instead of splitting on Sunday, I had some time to work on this little project. I've been wanting to try putting the Burton mounting hardware directly onto a pair of Verts. I love the Verts, but last year I had one of the straps break on a climb, and I thought that if I could mount the binding directly to the Vert deck, it would be a more secure connection, and it would save time when changing over.
In the end, I think that it doesn't work as well as I thought it would. The main problem is that the things are heavy when you add in the weight of the binding. I think when I'm climbing something steep and scary, I want my feet to be as mobile as they can possibly be, so I'd rather have the extra weight on my back. But it was a nice thought.
Anyone else try something similar and been happy with the results? I know they used to actually have a version with a K2 clicker plate, but that one seemed heavy too. If you could do that with a stripped down mounting plate along the lines of what Steve did here, that would seem like a good way to go.
Anyway, in case anyone else is interested in trying this out, here's what I did.
First, supplies. You can get the Vert decks by themselves direct from the manufacturer for $40. I picked up some extra crescent rings now that everyone is ditching the Burton system. For mounting hardware, I picked up some button head machine screws, washers and nylon lock nuts at the hardware store.
The end result. Here's the regular Vert, next to the Burton-modified one.
Here the regular Vert with boot attached:
And the Burton-modified one:
The tricky part is figuring out where to drill the holes. There are a few issues:
1) For optimal performance, the toe of the boot should be in the same place front to back as it is when using the normal mounting straps.
2) In the Burton case, the crescent ring will need to be rotated depending on what angles you run, and this will probably be different for each boot.
3) Some of the holes might run into the cross pieces on the underside of the Vert deck.
To get as close as possible, first I put the screws in the two crescent pieces, and placed them in the interface, closing the interface onto the assembly, as shown here:
Then I put the boot into the binding, took the other two crescent pieces, taped them together (with a couple extra pieces of tape hanging off the sides), and slid them just barely onto the ends of the exposed screws.
I then put boot w/interface onto the Vert deck, put my other boot in the regular Vert, and aligned the interface using the other boot/Vert as a guide. Once it was in place I used the extra pieces of tape to secure the crescent ring at the right location, then carefully pulled the interface and exposed screws out of the lower crescent ring. Then I added some more tape for good measure.
At this point you can just stand on the thing and use a handheld drill to drill the holes. I ended up with two holes hitting one of the cross pieces, and one being so close to the cross piece that I could only put on 3 nuts, but that was enough to secure it to the point where I could test it.
I immediately noticed the weight when I tried it out, so I aborted the mission at that point. You could probably notch out the cross pieces where the bolts are and not affect the rigidity of the deck, but I didn't try it.
Nice try! Save that one for the Museum of Obscure Splitboarding Mods!
I think BCR once posted a picture of Voile pucks mounted on Verts, which would be a much lighter solution. The thread is
here but the pictures are broken. It would be interesting to hear how well those worked.
PS Thanks for the tip on buying direct from the manufacturer. At $40, I think I'll finally get a pair. When I read the epic Mt. Cowen TR I couldn't help thinking they would have come in handy here:
Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 8:41 pm Posts: 1619 Location: Santa Cruz, CA
I think BCR once posted a picture of Voile pucks mounted on Verts, which would be a much lighter solution.
I was actually going to do the same mod for a Voile version. I don't think there would really be much weight difference, because most of the weight is in the binding. The Burton crescent rings and interface are actually pretty light. In retrospect I think I could have also gotten away with thinner diameter bolts/nuts as well, shaving off a bit more weight.
In that other thread DJ mentioned doing the Voile puck mod, and also noting the increased weight underfoot, but the tradeoff seemed to be OK in his opinion. YMMV.
PS Thanks for the tip on buying direct from the manufacturer. At $40, I think I'll finally get a pair.
Actually, that's $40 for just the deck. If you want the normal Vert (i.e. deck plus straps) it's $75. Still a hell of a deal and I can't recommend those things highly enough. I use them everywhere that's too steep for me to skin. I haven't used crampons in over a year. As usual, YMMV...
Jim...how are you liking those boots? Do they stay tight in the crimping device on the side. They seem convenient but I was wondering after a bunch of skinning if the laces start to slip.
So far I like them. They have a lot more support than the Ions I used to use, and so far they haven't developed that crimp in the back over the achilles. The Vibram sole seems to be a lot better too. I am getting an annoying hotspot below the achilles though... Anyway, the laces seem to work fine. I haven't had them slip yet. The inner nylon lace cuff works great but makes it kind of a pain to remove the liners.
Post subject: Weight savings recommendation for VERTS mods
Posted: Thu Dec 06, 2007 12:00 am
Joined: Sat Nov 24, 2007 1:12 am Posts: 829 Location: PNW Hood Canal
I start adding my two cents after using a pair of verts a ton when I lived in Europe. I was a burton si binding/boot rider. I added an old pair of bindings to my verts. I removed most of the binding parts though. Do you really need the highback? Not in my opinion. What about the angle adjustment ring? Again, not in my opinion, the angle for your riding stance may need to change, but on your verts? I mounted mine with the baseplate and heel cup only. Those using straps and soft boots would still need to keep the toe and ankle straps. For my mod the heel cup and side to side step in connections kept me well engaged in the binding. I used four tee nuts and drilled two holes front and rear for four point attachment between the vert plate and the burton si binding after stripping it down. I wish I still had them, they worked, were fairly light and packed decent. I bet the strap system was lighter that I removed, but the step in ability was way more convenient.
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