My goal for the 06/07 season was to reduce the skinning effort. Since then, I was using a Burton S with Burton interface and I wanted to reduce the total weight and increase the efficiency of the boot-binding system. How to find a good solution?: read all posts in splitboard.com, off course! After two weeks of researches, I decided to:
1. Buy a pair of A.T. boots to use with Dynafit toeclips
2. Buy a split kit from Voile
3. Buy a custom made carbon board to be splitted
4. Convert my Burton to the Voile interface and continue to use it with soft boots and bindings for the big days of powder (I did not imagine that 06/07 would have been the poorest in the last 30 years Ã¢â‚¬Â¦).
So, the registration to splitboard.com is free but do not underestimate the collateral effects Ã¢â‚¬Â¦
Step 1 : A.T. boots
I chose the Garmont Megalite, a three buckles boot, very light, not too stiff if used in walking mode for the descent too. I felt very comfortable since the first time I wore it, and I luckily followed the suggestion of the shop guy to not thermofit the liner if you don't feel any pressure on the foot. Then I had to test it with a soft snowboard in order to find the right stance and angles, trying to reach my usual setting with soft boots (-9/-6 rear, 18/21 front, 53 cm stance). I carefully started with a semi-hard 12/30 and closer stanceÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ step by step I ended to ride without problems in -9/25 at my usual stance of 53 cm.
I added a little canting to the back binding:
Meanwhile the Voile split-kit was arrived : time to go to the shaper for the board, here is it:
Board measurements: 162 length Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 24.5 center Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 29.5 tip Ã¢â‚¬â€œ 28.5 tail . Tip and tail are low and the running edge is as long as in my Burton 170, the board tip is very soft to help the tip float over the powder.
I tested the board with AT boots and Voile plate bindings, with soft boots and binding mounted on slider track and then finally with Dynafit toeclips.
On the board I made only four holes for Dynafit and drilled the touring bracket to fit it.
For hard snow traverses I chose the excellent B&D crampons
Bill, the owner of B&D, is a very kind and expert man that friendly helped me in choosing the material I needed. No problems at all with payment and delivery.
They are very well made, suitable to Dynafit crampon mount, as light as the Burton crampons and providing even a better grip. You don't need to unhook the boots to position the crampon, but with the Dynafit mount you have to keep the boot almost at 90 degrees, sometimes this is not an easy position and it requires a little time to get accustomed.
The inserting operation is easier with the B&D crampon mounts, but they requires two more holes so for the moment I try with Dynafit. The B&D mount is for sure stronger than my Dynafit (mod. Speed, all plastic, no metal reinforcement as in other new models)
The B&D crampon mount that I fixed on the converted Burton
This is a side view of the whole thing
B&D produces also an interesting crampon lock to be used when the heel lifter is in the upright position. This part needs two more holes so I'm waiting to mount it because I don't use very often the heel lifters and if the situation requires both heel lifters and crampons, probably I'd better prefer to fix the board to the backpack and use boot crampons.
Well, that's all regarding my dynafitted custom splitboard, I'm very satisfied on the result : skinning up is much easier than with my previous equipment, everything is lighter, the step is firm, steady and at the same time more fluent (can I use the adj. fluent in this case?). I have sweet sensations during the descent too: I can use the same stance and angles as with my soft freeriding board and I found a good regulation of the A.T. boots.
In the next post I'll give you some information about the weights.
Many thanks to all the splitboarders that shared their experiences & experiments on this forum, especially : BCrider, jimw, ttriche, dacksdescents, sanfrantastico, utahgirl, jack, dishwasher-dave, boardergirl, brett, burton and all the others that I can't remember now . Without your help I would never been able to survive this dry, hot, green and, in one word, poor winter Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ thanks a lot to all of you !
One question, not sure if this is covered elsewhere: Is it possible to use the rear dynafit atachemnts on a splitboard? you could use the dynafit heel lifter, and the have the option of locking the heel. But looking at the pictures it would probably interfer with the pucks.
clint: not a matter of space but the rear Dynafit binding is too heavy for the splitboard
Damian: I can't even think myself doing such a dangerous operation! I just called a good old friend who is a snowboard shaper. Together we decided the dimensions and features of the board and then he did all the work. So I will pass your congratulations to him !
Hey Bruno, my girl and I had an apartment in Milano last season. Even though we weren't split boarders at the time, I sure wish I had known about your skill (and enthusiasm!) back in those days. It would have been great to see your split set up.
We did most of our snowboard touring in the Alps to the north and west from our home, but we still managed to pass by Verona every now and then.
Man, if we were still in Milano this season I'd be out your way with a board, a split-kit, some Dynafit toe pieces and 12 bottles of Classico for you and your board shaper buddy
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2006 10:10 am Posts: 1119 Location: Denver
Nice looking setup there! Im surprised you can have a negative stance angle with hard boots, maybe those Garmonts have more flex then my Scarpas, as that would be painful for me ( my stance angles are 15 and 30 )
Damian: we are just living on the opposite sides of the Alps, not an ocean as with other splitboarders.com here, so keep in touch an maybe we will able to arrange a trip to Stubai or Hintertux glaciers that lay at halfway between us. Btw I'm so jealous of yr experience on Chamonix and Mont Blanc area, a zone that I've never visited. You are doing a very nice work in your website, I loved the video in which yr girlfriend is filming yr descent of a nice couloir and the little dog is whining in the background Ã¢â‚¬Â¦ lucky boy
Hikeforturns: believe me, I was so surprised too! Maybe the boots, maybe the board shape or /and softness, maybe my old and loosed knees, I really don't know. Now I'm using them at the resort on groomed, hard snow, with an old semi-soft board, my friends looking at me and shacking their heads, but I don't really care, I feel good.
>we are just living on the opposite sides of the Alps, not an ocean as with other splitboarders.com here, so keep in touch an maybe we will able to arrange a trip to Stubai or Hintertux glaciers
Sounds good . I tour pretty close to Stubai each weekend and have been to Hintertux back in November when that early (only) storm hit. This weekend I'll be touring 5 minutes down the road from a shitty resort called Kuhtai, if you know the area, near Innsbruck. There's 50cm of fresh on the cards... enough to force me to take out the split . I am all set and capable for some good glacier touring as well, in fact I have been missing out on a lot of it lately as my lady is away and the guys I am crewed with right know aren't really capable of handling a glacier accident, so we stay off them and tour at the group's level.
Thanks for the comment on the site, and yeah, my girl and dog are a really cool pair. I'm lucky and I respect them both.
Looks like a really wicked setup.How do you find the ride with those boots compared to softs??? is the skinning that much better than with softs??WHy i ask is i ride a race board and have a hard boot setup for the groomed days but i cant imagine being in stiff boots all day(no comparison in my 2 boots for comfort)....have softs for the powder=== resort and BC.
Hi Sheffy, forget race boots, they have nothing to do with the A.T. boots that I'm using. I would rather compare the Megalite to a stiff soft boot. Anyway, consider that boots are a very personal affair, I mean what is good for my feet should be terrible for yours. I think hard boots can never beat the feeling that soft boots deliver in the powder.
Here you find some other considerations on the topic: http://talk.splitboard.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=3414 The question I ask to myself is: it is better to have the best setup for the descent (soft boot and binding) or the best setup for the ascent (hard) in order to arrive to the top in a better condition and then have more energies to enjoy the descent? For the present, I have no answers but two splitboards to try in different conditions ...
Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 5:39 am Posts: 19 Location: Norway
Hi Bruno, nice setup
I have a new Prior ATV and are planning to mount Dynafit bindings.
I am wondering why you drilled four holes in the touring bracket. Do you switch beethween Voile and Dynafit bindings?
At my old board i mounted the Dynafits on top of the touring brackets. Not completely satisfied, so; Does the screews at the Dynafit last when mounting them at the board? - Have been afraid that the wide "skis" would put to much strain on them. - My board is made with a wooden core.
Thanks for any advice.