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PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2006 11:01 pm 
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Location: Calgary
Sorry BCR - didn't mean to sound so pedantic. :oops:

Someone once said that life is a series of tradeoffs. :D Of the various features in a crampon that I can think of, I would order my priorities like this:

1. Grip
2. Bulletproof
3. Easy installation
4. Lightweight/packable
5. Low drag
6. Low cost

I'm sure other people would order their priorities differently. Karma Surf's new design does a pretty good job of capturing my main priorities, but of course any design that could nail all of them would be superior.

But if the question is whether the new design is superior to the current one, I would go with the new one, no doubt. That's because the current design loses on items 2, 3, & 5.

- For me it isn't bulletproof because on my board the climbing bracket is slightly misplaced so that to install the crampon in fixed mode I have to hammer the pin in and out of the bracket with something heavy. :shock: I think a better design should handle bigger tolerances.

- Ideally you wouldn't even have to unstrap the skis to install the crampons. That would make ski crampon vs boot crampon a no-brainer if the terrain isn't too sketch.

- The current design loses on low drag because the mobile mode isn't useful enough to be used under most cirumstances.

Those are my two scents...


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Sep 25, 2006 11:19 pm 
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Location: Now Oaktowntastic
I'm not sure how that happened ^. That last post was from me.


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 Post subject: Re: Splitboard Crampon debate - fixed vs floating
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 12:46 am 
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Posts: 211
Location: somewhere in the middle of germany
SanFrantastico wrote:
The problem in 'mobile mode' (Voile's term) is that the crampons barely reach the snow surface when the climbing bars are up.



this is why I like the old ones more ... mostly used in mobile mode.

Image

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 7:55 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 18, 2004 6:27 pm
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Location: Denver
BCR, I think you hit the nail on the head when you said you haven't used crampons in two years. For me, there are about three traverses that require me to use the crampons. I don't have to use them for that long, but it's a death slide if you go. So I guess I prefer fixed. Also with the freeheel mode, I was having problems with the pivot locking up on me. For the amount of time and distance I am going to use a crampon, I am fine with the fixed mode. Being that I am ok with that, a smaller fixed crampon would be nice so that a lot less room is used with the pack. I would also bring them along more often.

A crampon that works in fixed mode and freeheel where it bites down with the riser up and doesn't lock on ya? Sure, that would be perfect. :P

For my needs, I'll settle for the fixed mode at this time.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 8:11 am 
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Location: Denver
Oh yeah, if you can put the crampon on and take it off without removing the sliders or getting out of your bindings, I would consider that a huge win.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 10:15 am 
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Location: California
Good stuff guys.

KS, SF, Kill, Jive,

You guys make some great points and have helped open my eyes a little on this. I think it's safe to say that I got off on a tangent about the design when it was deemed that a floating option was not important. In a perfect world I think that option does have some benefits along with the fixed method but when it comes to our not so perfect world, the compromises raised make a lot of sense. I love the way you reminded me of my own quote too SF! Life is a series if tradeoffs! :)

I think it makes perfect sense that if there is something that has to be compromised it should be drag and not bite. Having my eyes pried open now I also support the new crampon style and wish you the best KS in convincing the powers that be its what we want. It really does make the most sense given our options. Since we've thrown the floating need out the window and determined fixed is the safest and most secure, the new style of crampon is the way Voile should go. This will solve the easy installation need, secure bite, and probably even improve the packability and lighten them up a tad.

I respectfully raise my white flag. :)


Jogi,
Those old ones did work better in the floating mode but man are they bulky. Compromises had to be made.

Flatlander,
Thanks for the suggestion, I've thought about similar ideas but it always seemed kinda rigged and more trouble than it was probably worth.

Thanks again for the good discussion all.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 11:11 am 
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Joined: Fri Nov 19, 2004 8:41 pm
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Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Here's my thoughts on this issue.

I like the Burton crampons, and I do use them a lot. Maybe I just utterly suck at skinning (which the UT contingent may agree with after splitfest! - my excuse is the crappy Burton skins probably don't help :)), but unless I'm in pow, the crampons usually come out when I'm traversing or skinning up a steep slope. (I tend to do more touring in the spring, when hard snow is more of an issue.)

That is exactly the situation where I don't want to have to take the interface completely off the board to put the crampons on, which you have to do with the current Voile crampons. With the Burton crampons, I see two main advantages:

- You can put them on without removing the interface
- They pack small and inside each other

So, I usually have the crampons strapped neatly on the outside of my pack, which I can reach without even taking the pack off. I can then reach down and install the crampons without taking my foot out of the binding. Simple and easy.

About the floating issue, I do like the fact that the Burton ones float when your weight is not on the ski, but sometimes I do wish I could lock them down when things get really sketchy. I think I'd be OK with a fixed-only crampon if it could be installed w/o removing the interface and packed smaller, and was at least as effective as the Burton ones were in terms of grip. This sounds like exactly what karma surf is proposing with making the new Voile ski crampons available for splits as well, so I'd love to see that.

(Oh, speaking of the "effectiveness of the Burton ones", I would have to agree with bcr that Jive's experience with the Burton crampons was an anomaly. I use mine a lot and haven't had any issues. Perhaps the earlier ones weren't heat-treated or something?)

Alternatively, maybe Voile could come up with a way to make the existing board crampon work better. Some ideas:

- Flare out the edges slightly so that they lay inside each other for packing (already mentioned), like the Burton ones.

- Come up with a way to install them without removing the interface. You'd probably have to redesign the touring bracket and mod the crampon to attach similarly to the way the Burton one did. For reference, I tried getting my Burton touring bracket/crampons to work with the Voile slider plate; there's a description here. Didn't work out quite as planned in the end, but clearly if one manufacturer were designing the whole system, it could work.

- If you want to support a better floating mode, then you either have to add an extra set of climbing bars to the crampon itself like flatlander mentioned, or actually move the climbing bar to the interface itself. I tried to rig up a way to do that, also mentioned in the post referred to in the previous point.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 1:52 pm 
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Location: in between
I think Voile is going in the right direction here.

Packability is pretty important, but I've found that a sandwich fits nicely in between the crampons without getting squished. :P

I don't like the drag in fixed mode too, BCR, but it is a trade of I'm willing to take to have confidence inspiring grip.

I don't think I used crampons at all last year. I found that whenever I thought I'd need to bring them, that I was also bringing boot crampons and ice axe, so bringing both crampons was pretty impractical and seemed silly.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 4:00 pm 
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Location: seattle
the new wingnut crampons are probably better than the old style for the simple reason that crampons are rarely used and the new ones are smaller and lighter. i often carry crampons for the sole reason that if you need them and don't have them it can really suck, but then often don't 'cause the existing ones are some honkin chunks of aluminum.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Sep 26, 2006 4:28 pm 
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Location: Santa Cruz, CA
powderjunkie wrote:
I don't think I used crampons at all last year. I found that whenever I thought I'd need to bring them, that I was also bringing boot crampons and ice axe, so bringing both crampons was pretty impractical and seemed silly.

gregm wrote:
i often carry crampons for the sole reason that if you need them and don't have them it can really suck, but then often don't 'cause the existing ones are some honkin chunks of aluminum.

These reasons are exactly why the Burton crampons were great. They are very small and light, and you can easily put them on the outside of the pack for easy access. And when you need them, you can install them without unstrapping your foot or taking the interface off. So, for me it's a no-brainer to bring them... that's the point where I'd like to see the Voile ones to get to.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Sep 27, 2006 6:16 pm 
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jimw wrote:
These reasons are exactly why the Burton crampons were great. They are very small and light, and you can easily put them on the outside of the pack for easy access. And when you need them, you can install them without unstrapping your foot or taking the interface off. So, for me it's a no-brainer to bring them... that's the point where I'd like to see the Voile ones to get to.


Actually, aside from sacrificing the free floating mode and living with some crampon drag…the new crampons karma surf is pushing for will fill those needs very nicely. 8)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2006 10:38 am 
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Yup, that's why I said:
jimw wrote:
This sounds like exactly what karma surf is proposing with making the new Voile ski crampons available for splits as well, so I'd love to see that.
:)

Though I still think they could take a look at what worked well about the Burton design, and design something even better.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Sep 28, 2006 12:58 pm 
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Have it all:
Image[/img]
Fixed, non-elevated

Image
Free, non-elevated

Image
Free, elevated

Image
Fixed, elevated

Image
Free, elevated a bit more

Install and remove on the fly:
Image


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