Thought I would see if anyone else here has had a similar problem and if there's any ideas out there to resolve it.
I've broken the pucks off my board twice this year. Both times it was the front binding that ripped off and both times the screws holding down the pucks were still screwed into the board. The plastic sheared around the screws.
I'm using Voile plates with Bomber plate bindings attached.
The first time it happened I didn't worry about it too much as it was the result of a heavy landing off a huck... figured I put a ton of force on the binding and it was a freak thing.
The second time it happened was just this morning. For those of you familiar with the Cottonwoods, I was on my second or third turn off of the ridgeline down into Argenta. I had to ski my Dynafit toe pieces the 3k vert back to the car and ended up late for work.
As a general rule, I avoid any product made by Voile since everything I've ever purchased from them has been complete crap. Once my Karakoram hooks get here, the only piece of equipment I'll have left from Voile will be these pucks and the plates. Unfortunately, I don't trust the pucks any more.
The common thread in both breakages is that it happened during a dawn patrol. That may be a coincidence but it may also be because it's sometimes really freaking cold in the morning. This morning my thermometer in the car read -10 after my ride... was probably -20 up on the ridge.
So does anyone have any suggestions? Until Karakoram comes out with a version of their binding for hardbooters, I'm stuck with the pucks. Would really appreciate any feedback as it's got me nervous something could happen on a multi-day trip.
Joined: Tue Aug 19, 2008 11:55 am Posts: 1001 Location: Wasatch
I used to work customer service for voile and if i remember correctly i don't ever remember seeing a puck break(which is a pretty big statement considering 98% that splitboard are on the voile interface with pucks) . my guess would be that it was from the cold, but there are a lot of people riding in the cold with no issues.
I know that there are some people making DIY pucks out of delrin/delron? which is a harder material. But harder usually means more brittle with plastics so i don't know if thats what you need. It's extremely weird that you have broken two pucks. I'm sure you already have contacted them but call, email, or stop by voile and tell them how you feel. They will take care of you the best they can.
Figured I'd copy what Sam from Voile had to say about my problem:
"That sounds interesting- This is certainly not anything we've heard of happening but a few times over the years- if I'm understanding correctly, the actual plastic on the pucks broke? How old were those pucks? Very early pucks did, in fact, have a different ratio of glass- plastic and a few had troubles in very cold temperatures, however, we have used new materials for many years now that are very strong in any temperature as long as they are not screwed down too tight- tight is good- over tight is not good. While it's important to get your puck screws really secure, make sure that the puck is not bowed out at all when it's screwed in- if it is it places the pressure in a different spot and can make the plastic weak and break. If none of these explanations make sense and you're still unsure of what is happening, please send photos if you have them of the old pucks and where they failed and we'll certainly take a look. Hope this helps! Sam"
Just to be fair to Voile since I am a hater... their customer service has always been great.
I bought a new set of pucks, I'll see how loose I can keep them while still keeping them secure. I'm still guessing it's the butal cold this winter.
You could make your own solid pucks out of 1/2 inch makrolon/polycarbonate. (McMaster-Carr) I really do not think that you could break them even in hard boots and plates-It is the stuff that hockey rink boards are made of and is relatively bullet proof, but really it may be better to crack a puck instead of have all of that load put on your board, Voile pucks are so light you could just ride with an extra set, and maybe save a board in the process. I am guseeing that solid polycarbonate pucks probably weigh as much as two sets of Voile glass filled nylon pucks. (solid glass-filled nylon is prohibitively expensive to buy)
Damn, that sucks You should replace the gaskets while your at it, and don't over tighten For what its worth I've been riding on a cracked disc for two seasons with AT boots and mt plates I'm just too lazy to replace it
Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 10:05 am Posts: 1510 Location: Colorado
I broke a set of pucks last season. This happened when I hit an unseen (flat light) compression at speed and all my weight and speed went forward, snapping the front pucks. My feeling at the time was that I would have broken my ankle if the pucks had not broken in this situation (I did sustain a very mild sprain, so mild it was fine in two days). In this case I was happy to purchase new pucks, as I actually expect the failed pucks saved me from serious injury. I would like to see stiffer (and stronger) pucks though, as I feeling riding response could be improved with a stiffer puck. I am pretty confident that the pucks could be made of carbon reinforced plastic for more stiffness and strength. I have an old Burton C-14 binding made of a carbon filled plastic, and it is very stiff and very strong, I would love to see Voile produce some premium pucks made of this type of composite.