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 Post subject: Hmmm...
PostPosted: Tue Aug 30, 2005 11:21 pm 
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You make good points about the difference in style and technique between the two different disciplines Zach.

huevon:
Quote:
Go try to drive your tight-suspension racecar on some nasty mountain roads...


Ummm ... okay. I'd love to take a rally car with a relatively stiff suspension and defintely damp suspension down a nasty road. Now, if I can just convince someon to let me borrow a million dollar car I'll go on tour ...

I started the imperfect analogies I guess - but I disagree with yours. I disagree with the implication that you lose suspension with HB's. It is a different technique than with softies and I do not think that I can state it better than Zach did. Further, with my stance, style and technique with HB's, I can use the board more effectively as a means of suspension and dampning as well. I will say, also, that the boards I prefer are defintiely more suited to my style however and what I do on the type of board - the way I use it- cannot be achieved as effectively with softies and vice versa. Different equipment all around. I ride stiffer, narrower and longer boards with larger sidecut radii than the average softie does. Not just a carving deck in particualr, but all mountain rides as well.

Same end result however.

Quote:
This is fine when you want to commit all-or-nothing to a turn, and it's great for holding an edge statically. But locking down your knees and ankles makes subtle adjustments more difficult, and makes you much more prone to jolty riding on anything besides smooth terrain.


I can make incredibly subtle adjustments. Further neither my knees nor my ankles are locked - they are always flexing, absorbing and dampning the ride. HB's flex forward very well and the stiffness incorparted is predominatly for lateral support and sole support - neccesary for my style. That lateral and sole support, coupled with foward flex (adjustable resistance on most HB's) is precisely what allows my subtle adjustments. I can with incredible subtlety, precision and quickness direct edge pressure to very small to very large portions of my edge. If I rode softies at my angles there would be no subtle adjustments - it would be difficult as hell to make any lateral adjustments period. Again, different technique does not equate to inferior performance, feel, precision or subtelty.

In addition, as already mentioned by somebody else, there are softies that are stiffer than some HB's in certain flex directions.

patroller420:
Quote:
mending fences you asshole snowboarders tore down


I resent that remark. Give credit where credit is due dude. I single handedly tear down hundreds of yards of rope and dozens of boo a year with my tiller - way more than any damn knuckledragger can. You damn redcoats put the stuff up in the wrong places all of the time and I have to ... umm ... relocate it with my cat. You know, to show you guys where not to put a boo and rope.

':lol:'

Ooops.

Ski patrol at 7:00 AM on the radio: "anything else trail maintenance?"

Me: "Yea, I got ahold of some boo on {insert run here} last night."

Ski patrol: "Alot?"

Me: "Umm, you better send a guy up on a sled with about 50' of rope and 3 or 4 boo."

Ski patrol: "Okay. Have a good day."

Me: "You too {insert name of who I am talking to here}."
Off-mike: "giggle, giggle, giggle."

If it is any consolation, cutting 40' rope out of one's tiller at 3:00 AM at over 12,000' in a snowstorm with a leatherman is less than fun.

Quote:
I was thinking about switching to hard plastic boots, but if they dont fel right I will go back to soft boots.


I think that most people transition to HB's for carving purposes. I know many excellent carvers that still use softies all mountain because it is what they learned on, do not feel like learning another technique (carving HB is different than all mountain HB which is different that all mountain softie) or think, quite wrongly, that there is some inherent benefit to softies all mountain and that you can't do certain things on HB's. I stay away from carving forums, for many reasons - one of them being that impossibility mindset from people who just have not learned a technique to make it work and learn to appreciate the joy of it.

Obviously I am biased, but carving is fun as hell and enough reason for most, but HBing all mountain kicks ass too. My preference as well - carving is merely to pass the time until there is enough snow on the real terrain - off piste. Don't waste the money if you do not want to spend some time learning a different technique and feeling like a gaper all mountain until it clicks for you. But, if you can swing it, well, I have found that the more eequipment you use, the more styles you incorportate, improves your riding on anything with any setup. I am a hell of alot better skier after become comfortable on HB's than I was before I learned the dscipline of HB. That is to say that HBing made me a better skier without ever putting on a pair of skiis for a few years. Pretty cool. After all, riding, skiing, they are both using the same basic thing to achieve the same goal.

You can never have too many snow toys. Priorties must be realized and sacrifices made.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:19 am 
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bcrider wrote:
aren't John Griber and Stephen Koch considered professional?

Speaking of Stephen Koch, he had some interesting things to say in the Couloir forum last year where he answered questions:

http://www.telemarkskier.com/cgi-bin/ul ... 000896;p=1

Some excerpts:

Quote:
The best thing for steep no fall situations is to not fall! My 'mountain' set-up is Dynafit TLT 700's with Thermoflex liners, Rome Anthem board with Burton race-plate bindings. I have been riding mostly in soft boots and bindings other than when snowboard mountaineering. It is quite a transition to the hard boots after not riding them for a while. This winter I will ride in La Sportiva Olympus Mans Boots with thermoflex liners and soft bindings. I have put Da Kine Snow Claws on the outside of the liner to add support and stiffness. This has worked well. I did not trust the soft bindings enough to use them on Everest. Also, when I ride soft boots/bindings, I use the Rome Flag, a wider board. On steep icy terrain the soft boots don't work because of drag and overhang. When I ride hard boots I can use a much smaller / narrower (lighter!!!) board because my stance is steeper, about 35 degrees back 40 front. My soft stance is 21/9. I am currently working with Rome Snowboards developing both a soft boot (wider) and hard boot (narrower)board for snowboard mountaineering.

Quote:
Hard boot descending: The ride of hardboots is generally a bit taller and stiffer than soft boots. It is less 'surfy' and more snowboard mountaineering. When I am using hardboots I am usually concerned with safety first.

Quote:
username: I don't think steeper stance angles leads to better edge control. That being said, I do believe hard boots lead to better edge control. Hard boots transfer the movement of the rider more precisely through the boots/bindings and into the board. I have used tiny carving boards as narrow as 205 mm wide at the waist.

Quote:
Jon Dahl: Do you mean snowboard hard boots like Burton's or Reichle's with the beveled heal and toe? These are fine for resort but not good for step kicking in firm snow. If you are always using a crampon they might work in the mountains but look out for fatigue in the metal because you won't have a platform for the metal to sit on near the frontpoints. I have always used Rendonee boots for snowboard mountaineering (first year was in Sorels) except my second year of riding when I used a pair of two buckle rental ski boots. I am now in soft boots regularly and have been skiing more since last year. The rubber and non-rocker sole is important for snow/rock travel and for kicking a platform to get the board on/off on steep terrain.


And perhaps most relevant of all?

Quote:
I am all about people getting jiggy on whatever type of snowboard they like best. Fun is what got me into snowboarding and is what keeps me stoked today. Have fun and let others have fun. If you poo-poo others it usually means you are hiding an inadequacy. The toughest guy is usually the softest inside, too afraid to show his true nature. Too bad for the rest of us. If he was willing to trust himself and us to go there we might really like him. At least he would be true to himself.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:29 am 
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Ecobrad wrote:
I like punk rock.

Of course, this is the #1 reason that soft boots will always rule over hard boots.

:)


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 Post subject: Well...
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:31 am 
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...bcd, I will make this my last post in response to you to prevent this from getting out of hand and let you have the last word. Get ready to not be offended by that blunt thing again.

Quote:
I don’t doubt the fact that hardboots offer precise control in certain conditions.


Good. You shouldn't. Further, you shouldn't suggest, as I am reading from your words, that HB's offer inferior control to HB's in other situations - they don't. Your lack of experience with the technique, or lack of witnessing that technique are not evidnece of that either. Roughly 1% of the riding population uses HB's and of them, many never venture off-piste with them. This however means nothing more than I am a small segment of the population, not an incapable one.

I have just as much and just as precise control in powder, steep, bumps, etc. Don't believe some knucklehead like me on the net? Look at the examples Zach provided.

Quote:
Hauling ass down a race course becomes ridiculously easy once you have mastered the basics of halfpipe riding. Riding a halfpipe requires skill, edge control and precision that snowboard racers can’t even comprehend.


Ludicrous statement. Period. Ridicuously easy once the basics of half pipes are mastered? An utterly laughable statement. I am not denying the skill invovled in halfpipe, riding. I am saying that your appraisla of what it takes to be a racer and the, umm, what was it? Yes, the skill, edge control and precision required in racing is incredible. Racers comprehend these things very well - at least, and I stress at least. as a pipe rider. You obviously are unfamiliar in what racing is all about and the skill set required to do it.

Can't comprehend? That's a pretty strong statement, as well as flat out wrong, and an incredible slap in the face of professional like Fawcett, Jay, Klug, etc., that spend years perfecting the skill, edge control and precision that racing demands. Hell, your weekend warrior competant carver has a damn fine mastery of such things.

You know not of which you speak dude.

Quote:
So how many halfpipe riders wear hard boots?


Maybe, instead of your wrong suggestion that HB's are inferior means of control, precision and take less skill it has to do with the fact that the forward stances, narrower, longer and stiffer boards are not as well suited to that very specific discipline.

A professional pipe rider uses different equipment and different stance than does a professional all mountiner or a professional racer. Get it?

And again, if what your argument is forwarding is true, where the hell are these guy's Sorrels? You know, the ultimate softie affording maximum feel and sensitivity of the snow.

Quote:
Here’s the thing: Precise edge control of the snowboard goes FAR beyond the simple pressure of your feet. Precise edge control in variable, steep, and technical terrain goes far beyond the boots on your feet. Precise edge control is dependent upon body position, body tension, and flexibility. And it is very dependent on the sensitivity of your footwear. This sensitivity includes the ability to feel the terrain under your feet, and make minuscule lateral movements to adjust your balance and center of gravity.


I agree with most of that, except the sensitivity part and the inference that you cannot feel anything with HB's or not as well. How much of what the snow is transmitting is absorbed by your softer board? Your less rigid binding? Absorbed in the soft sole of your boot? So much more of this sensitivity thing your talking about is absorbed by a soft setup, not felt by you. You want to feel it, well, transmitt that to your body through the more rigid connection of a plate setup instead of absorbing before it hits your little piggies like with a freestyle set up. But, in the sense you are talking about it, I don't think it matters that much anyway.

And again, I do make miniscule movements to adjust my balance and center of gravity with precision constantly - just like you do. I feel the terrain under my feet, slight changes in snow conditions, etc.

Quote:
In order to hold an edge in steep, variable conditions a snowboarder needs to be able to make movements that I do not believe are possible with hard boots.


Yea, and people believed the world was flat too. I stick an edge in steep varible conditions with no problems. Very precise edge sticking as well. My issue with your stance is that you are saying things are impossible that are not just possible but actually done. You obviously do not have experience with the technique or equipment, despite what you may claim in response, and I am not trying to say that softies suck and HB's are better. I am telling you where you are wrong about your appraisals, beliefs and statements about something you are not experienced with - that is all.

What you claim to be impossible, I, and many, others do.

Quote:
Many people think it is possible


That is because it is done by myself and others. It has been and is shown.

Quote:
You might think a certain descent or certain conditions require “precise” control, while other people would consider it to be ridiculously easy. Different people have different viewpoints on the definition of “steep” and “technical”.


That is not what I am talking about. I am stating, correctly, that I have precise control over my board and movements on the same terrain a softie does, precise enough to be comfortable in no fall zones, which we can all agree upon as far as perspective. You are saying that it is impossible for me to have such control in HB's. You are wrong and obviously lack the technique and experience with the equipment to make such defintie appraisals.

You are ripping on a technique and equipment you do not understand. That is all I am trying to correct here.

As far as your appraisals of what the pros use, well I would accept it if you could also show that they have experimented equally with both setups before they made their decisions. Look at the snowboarding market dude. It is all about softies as has been for a long time. Go find me a Burton race deck in their cataloge. Get it? Most riders, your professionals included, never put HB's on their feet, and if they do, not for any length of time to relearn or flat out learn a technique. Again Zach's one example disproves your assertion here.

People are doing what you say they cannot - there just isn't alot of us. People used to say the same thing about tele's as well dude. Guys are doing things on tele skis today what 15 years ago the "pros" were saying couldn't be done. They are different techniques dude, different styles, but equally capable equipment - with the exception of the pipe.

I don't even know you, but I bet I have more experience on softies than you do HB's. Try them and learn a differnt way to get down the mountain before you start saying they are inferior - cause they ain't. They are merely different.

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Okay, God, I see you don't want to do it just now. Well, all right, suit yourself, you're the boss, but we ain't got a hell of a lot of time. Make it pretty soon, goddammit. A-men." - Seldom Seen Smith.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 1:16 am 
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To each his own. BCD has certainly shown via his insane trip reports this season that soft boots/strap bindings can get you down the most incredibly gnarly terrain in style. Here are just a couple examples:

http://www.splitboard.net/talk/viewtopic.php?t=652
http://www.splitboard.net/talk/viewtopic.php?t=725

And I'm sure that people can do similar stuff with hardboots. I'm planning on reading some verbose TR's from Cat Jockey next season demonstrating just that. :)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 6:38 am 
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Well this has been a healthy discussion. I do believe that there are definite performance advantages to hard boots. Thanks Cat Jockey for shamelessly spraying on everyone and pointing some of these out. Hopefully some more eyes are opened.

I hope you'll not abandon us just yet though, because as you seem to know a lot about HB setups, I want to know what you think about current offerings from splitboard manufacturers, and get some advice on what you think comprises the best HB setup for splitboarding?

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 9:48 am 
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Just for the record; I think that what Cat Jockey was trying to point out is that neither system is inherently better than the other. It's really just a matter of personal physiology, balance and prefrence.

As for the perfect splitboard set-up;
- Garmont Mega Rides; they have the most forward lean of any AT boot on the market and can be modified to get a little more. If you get the new ones, though, you may want to order the softer tongue.
- Bomber, splitboard bindings... they've been lightened up this year, and they are much better at power transmission than the Voiles... of course, some people like a sloppier ride, so they go with the Voiles.
- Cant and lift shims underneth the slider pucks. The way to do this is to set up a pair of normal, plate bindings on the split board (obviously without mounting them), then take the cant and lift angles from that and fashion the shims. If you use the Bomber, TD2s, there is a spreadsheet on the Bomber site that calculates the compund angle... You can take this compund angle to a machine shop to create the shims. Otherwise, you can create some fairly crude ones using plastic cutting board materials.... I'm pretty sure that you would need a grinder to accomplish this. I tried to do it with a miter-saw and couldn't figure it out.

As for a board: I prefer a skinnier board, now that I'm on plates. There are two shapes that I want:
1. A Prior 172 split powstick (swallowtail), cusomized to a 24.5 cm waist.
2. I also like the look of the ATV, perhaps with a wider waist... but I won't know until I've demo'd it, which I plan on doing.

Zach

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 Post subject: Pssst....
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 10:17 am 
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you guys have never seen Jasey Jay Anderson in the pipe on a race board and hardboots? Who dude it looks SICK.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 10:28 am 
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Zach,

You should really add in my opinion or for my intended uses before your comments on the perfect splitboard set-up…

:)


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 10:36 am 
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Well, that settles it. Softies for now, when I am doing most of my riding, then hard boots for mountaineering in sketchy situations or serious multiday trips, when I probably wouldn't be caring about the surfy feel anyways. In other words, 90% of the time on softies and 10% of the time with HBs.

Actually, not to thread jack or anything, but this discussion brings up an interesting point about pushing the sport to a wider market. I assume that the wider market most likely means the younger demographic, since that's where most of the purchasing goes on. My guess is that getting this demographic into HBs would be very difficult (the stigma of racers & HBs), therefore making the development of more advanced softboot systems necessary to attract the market.

This means that the development of soft systems might have to precede pushing the HB systems. That is, of course, unless someone can get on the ball with those vibram soles for softies!

For all those with HB setups, what's the approximate total cost for your setup? I'd like to have that option, but am not sure that I have the $$$ at the moment.

Oh, thanks for the quotes from Steven Koch, jimw - he seems to have it dialed.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 10:57 am 
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Nomad,

I don't think that boots and bindings are holding back splitboarding, at all.

I had an interesting conversation with Paul Parker about the boot issue... one of many attempts that I've made to fenagle a pair of Mega Rides, customized with an Intec heel-piece. He chuckled and said "Yeah, i'll get right on it. We need to seriously put in some R&D time for all of the snowboard mountaineers out there; all 4 of you." :D

Note: This was a friendly conversation, and he was not being condescending.

The point is that there are very few people out there who need anything beyond the current offerings. 99% of the backcountry terrain in the US can easily be accessed in soft boots, and there is no reason that it shouldn't be. In my marketing work, I try to stress that when dealing with potential converts. All you need to do is take your strap bindings and mount them on the slider plates... it's really pretty simple.

The very few people on this country who climb more technical terrain or go to extremely high altitudes before making turns, are either on these sites vocaly expressing their opinions, or their names are Stephen Koch and John Griber. Most bc snowboarders just want to skin up and drop into something fun.

Zach

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 31, 2005 11:11 am 
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Thanks nomad!

You brought up a point that I starting typing this morning but ran out of time…

I feel that if a boot/binding company is to offer a specific boot for splitboarding, they should start with a softboot/strap binding set-up.

The splitboard market is small but the hardboot users in this segment are even more finite.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2005 6:19 am 
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+This was fun watching. :D

I like Soft Boots and straps. I wanna try AT boots with plates. Ill decide then.

I also like Metal, Beer, and an occasial Oatmeal Raisin Cookie.

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